It’s Not About the Mortgage


In the past few weeks, we have been honored to add a slew of great mortgage professionals to our lending team. While this is extremely exciting on its own, it also presents a great opportunity every time we add someone for me to get clear on what makes our mortgage team unique.

Mindset versus Skill Set

So much of our success is about having the right mindset. I believe this is what separates the elite professionals from the rest. Many mortgage lenders have similar skill-sets in that they can close loans well, they understand lending guidelines, and are somewhat adept at understanding the financial markets. But to me, the first thing I must do is get my mortgage advisors to begin thinking differently. I must change their mindset.

I must help my mortgage advisors stop confusing what they do with how they get paid. Sometimes this can be difficult since unfortunately, not many lending institutions think this way. Yes, we get paid by closing new mortgages for our clients. But what we do is so much bigger and more important.

What we do is help people make smart financial decisions. What we do is help homeowners and soon-to-be homeowners understand the short and long-term financial impact of different financing options.

And above all else, what we do here at our company is help people enjoy new levels of clarity, confidence, and direction on how to achieve a bigger, better, and safer financial future.

We do this by helping them get crystal clear about where they are today, identify where they want to go, and then begin to map out a plan to get there. The painful fact is that most people have no one else in their life to help them do this! And the house and mortgage play a critical factor in all of this!

“It’s Not About The Mortgage”

So, one of the very first things I find myself telling my loan officers when they come on board is that “it’s not about the mortgage”! I find this usually causes an initial, awkward pause. I imagine part of their brain is saying, “What in the world did I get myself into coming over here?!”

But once I go on to explain that what they do, and how they get paid, are two completely different things, I see a light turn on. I see a glimmer of renewed excitement about being a mortgage professional and helping people. I watch as their conversations with clients begin to change and become more meaningful. As a result, I see less trivial conversations about rates and fees, and more conversations about financial goals, accountability, improving cash flow, maximizing savings, paying off debt, and more.

Too many mortgage lenders spend too much time talking to their clients about mortgages. I believe what people prefer to talk about is their financial future. They just need someone who will ask the right questions, listen, and stop selling a product they don’t even want in the first place if they didn’t have to have it. Stop selling mortgages (insert your specific service or product), and focus instead on what a bigger, better, and safer financial future looks like for your client. Then, show how the mortgage and real estate will help achieve that vision.

As a mortgage lender, if you don’t adopt this mindset, you’ll find yourself constantly being treated like a commodity by clients and referral partners, and eventually, you will burn out. It’s not a fun way to do business, and we have all seen too many colleagues fall out due to this.

If you DO change your mindset, you’ll find yourself with happier clients, more dedicated referral partners, and you will enjoy a new sense of excitement about what you do every day when you go to work!

About Trevor Hammond

Trevor Hammond, NMLS# 74846 Division Vice President, Neo Home Loans 📞 (503) 680-5360 📧 📍 4380 S Macadam Ave, #150, Portland, OR 97239 🌐 Connect with me on LinkedIn:
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