It’s no secret that 2023 is going to be a different market than the past few years. According to MBA President and CEO Bob Broeksmit, “The mortgage market began 2023 on a positive note, with a decline in mortgage rates leading to an uptick in refinance applications. Purchase activity was down again on a weekly and annual basis.” The MBA expects mortgage rates to move lower over the course of the year, which should bring more homebuyers back to the market.
It’s safe to say that 2020 and 2021 were outliers for the housing market. Rates were historically low, demand was surging because of the pandemic, and bidding wars became a normal part of the process. In 2022 rates rose faster than any other six-month period in history. By the time brokers and LOs got used to the change, the market shifted again. Most industry observers expect this year to be much more consistent which will give originators a chance to adapt to the current market rather than constantly reacting to fast-changing elements.
In addition to originators having to adapt to the new market, homebuyers will too. People still need homes, and there is a large pool of potential first-time homebuyers, as well as those whose current home isn’t a good fit anymore, who are waiting on the sidelines because of uncertainty in the market. So how do you reach these potential customers? By working with them the way they expect.
Opportunities in 2023
The mortgage and housing industry is cyclical. It always has been and always will be. LOs and brokers should use this time to double down, hone their craft and become even better resources to their clients…especially when others are pulling back. There is still business to be had and getting in front of those leads as early as possible is crucial. In fact, getting in front of a potential borrower at the beginning stages of the loan process through a POS increases the likelihood of capturing their business by 70%.
Converting to new technology is assumed to be a time-consuming project and can be a real sticking point for brokers. But implementing a simple, quick, and cost-effective solution is now more important than ever.
Advanced digital mortgage technology enables brokers to make material improvements that speed up operations and meet borrowers’ ever-increasing expectations of the mortgage process. McKinsey reports that speed is a crucial factor in overall customer satisfaction. In a recent study, borrowers said that they prioritized a quick-to-complete loan application, responsive communication, and a fast time to close. Without such a system in place, brokers are left with roadblocks that make it challenging to compete.
Consumers’ appetite for a contact-free mortgage is stronger now than ever, and borrowers are increasingly using remote tools like online applications, digital document submission, real-time loan status updates, and eSignings. Digital solutions are the new norm for many people who now favor the ease and convenience provided by technology. According to industry reports, 70% of overall digital media time is spent on mobile phones, and 66% of consumers prefer to use their phones to complete a purchase. So, having a tech stack in place to work with borrowers the way they want to conduct business is crucial.
Digital loan origination technology like Calyx’s Zenly® enables originators to address and overcome these challenges. Zenly is specifically designed for busy brokers to help build better customer relationships, grow their business and decrease the time to close. With Zenly, originators have an integrated, mobile-friendly point of sale at their disposal to capture more leads. Zenly allows originators to efficiently handle the needed steps to complete a mortgage application and deliver it, with the accompanying documentation, to a wholesale lender. The no-hassle implementation can be ready to use in as little as 15 minutes. As a result, brokers and borrowers alike benefit from reduced process times and the convenience of an on-demand, cloud-based mortgage experience.