Justin Crowley's referral-driven mortgage success story

First Western Trust Bank originator conquers turbulent market

Justin Crowley's referral-driven mortgage success story

“I witnessed the manager firing an assistant, and I saw my chance,” said Justin Crowley (pictured), senior mortgage loan originator at First Western Trust Bank, as he reminisced about the unexpected beginning of his mortgage journey.

Looking for new opportunities after his IT work got canceled, Crowley found himself at a mortgage company the following Friday. “I approached him, expressed my eagerness to learn and work hard, and secured a job starting Monday. That’s how I got my foot in the door,” he recalled.

Today, Crowley stands out with his unique approach in the industry, managing approximately 40% of his loans from clients across the country, relying solely on referrals.

“I don’t do any marketing; it’s all word of mouth,” he asserted, emphasizing the importance of cultivating strong relationships with clients. “I believe in building trust and rapport. When you treat people well and provide excellent service, they’re more likely to recommend you to others.”

This approach has made Crowley a trusted name, empowering clients to confidently refer him to their friends and family.

Handling an extensive range of clients, Crowley offers various loan options to suit their needs. “We cover the basics of conventional, VA, USDA, down payment assistance, and portfolio programs for doctors and professionals,” he explained, highlighting his expertise in catering to individuals from all walks of life.

Crowley’s well-structured and efficient team plays a pivotal role in his success. “Yes, I’ve got a pretty, pretty efficient small team,” he shared, referring to his three assistants, two processors, two underwriters, and two closers who handle a significant portion of his mortgage volume.

Beyond his core team, Crowley collaborates with other originators within his network, creating a synergistic environment that enhances the overall expertise. “I’ve got other originators working with and around me, each with their own book of business and clientele,” he said.

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One of Crowley’s distinguishing factors is his ability to cater to clients outside his immediate area. “Over the years, I became known to my clients as someone who can help them with real estate transactions anywhere,” he said. Whether clients are relocating or investing in out-of-state properties, Justin’s team acts as translators, guiding them through the nuances of different markets.

The top originator acknowledged the uncertainty that comes with forecasting the mortgage market. “It’s anyone’s guess, of course,” he said. However, his team adopts a practical approach by focusing on what works best in their specific market. “We’ve been through so many cycles and different markets over the last 22 years,” he added, emphasizing the importance of adapting their skills to meet clients’ needs.

As low housing inventory remains a challenge in many markets, Crowley pointed out that land development processes can take up to five years to yield sellable lots. Despite the scarcity, high demand for desirable locations keeps the housing market buoyant.

“So as long as people want to live in their own spaces and move to more desirable locations, I think those markets will continue to remain in high demand even if rates remain elevated,” Crowley predicted. “And when rates do find an opportunity to come back down a little bit, I only see that adding fuel to the fire and hopefully allowing people to refinance to lower payments.”

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