A big boom can also mean big backups

When your pipeline doubles because of a drop in rates, remember -- everyone else's doubles too. That can mean big-time backups, and you have to adjust customer expectations

A big boom can also mean big backups
By Dave Hershman
Special to MPA

My pipeline is the largest it has been in a year. I thought it would be easy to get things closed, but it seems like everything is backed up -- from appraisers to underwriters. I feel like I am drowning and can't market. Please help!
--From several loan officers.

I have seen a call for help or just complaints from several loan officers in the past several weeks. I have been in this industry for almost 35 years (of course, I started when I was 7!). It never changes. Rates go down and we get a boom. But loan officers many times do not see the big picture, so they don't change their expectations. If your pipeline doubles from one month to the next and so does every other loan officers' pipeline, what is going to happen? Big time back-ups. So you must adjust expectations.
The key to getting more referrals is exceeding expectations. If the processing time for a refinance is 50 days and you tell a client 40 days, you will never exceed expectations. If you tell that same customer that it will take 60 days to process and get to closing, you have a good chance of exceeding expectations. Same timeline but you are setting a different expectation.
There are also other adjustments that can be made -- for example, letting your clients know how busy things are and if they don't come up with their documents quickly, others will get in the door ahead of them. Create a big time sense of urgency is a key part of the service equation.  
--Dave Hershman

Dave Hershman has been the leading author and a top speaker for the industry for decades with six books authored and hundreds of articles published.   His website is www.originationpro.com.  If you have a reaction to this commentary or another question you would like answered in this column? Email Dave directly at [email protected].