As with most industries, the increased use of technology has changed many aspects of the mortgage origination experience. When I first started in this business over 15 years ago, 90% of my interactions were in person and I computed my calculations/payments by hand.
The trust and confidence developed between the borrower and lender during these face-to-face interactions. Personally, a good portion of my days involved setting up meetings and driving to houses in the evenings, sitting at kitchen tables with customers. The purchase of a home, which is one of the biggest financial transactions that most people will make, deserved this high level of personal connection. Over the past 10 years, the mortgage industry has become increasingly digital and less personal…BUT small boutique mortgage companies continue to provide a high level of service that remains unmatched by bigger players.
While digital signing and portals have become the norm, personal and authentic communication continues to be a valuable part of the customer experience in this industry, whether in-person, by phone or via email/texting. Generally speaking, fully digitalizing the mortgage industry on a scalable level has been somewhat limited by the many rules, regulations and nuances of obtaining a mortgage loan. As advancements are made in the automation of the mortgage approval process, the future proves to be more and more digital and less relational. Currently, up to 70% of all mortgage originations are being processed online and at centralized call and processing centers. Borrowers today are more likely than ever to feel comfortable online with no face-to-face connection, but some kind of personal interaction is still highly beneficial for such an important purchase. The interaction between the mortgage originator and borrower has moved more towards texting, online and navigating portals, but the value added by a small boutique company far outweighs the lack of any personal connection with completely digital platforms.