As one of the principals of a large, seven-member real estate team (The Colorado Dream House Team), I get a lot of phone calls from mortgage lenders wanting to earn our referral business. They would like to meet with me, take me to lunch, grab coffee, and the like. We probably get four or five inquiries a month. While we are extremely flattered by all of the interest, we cannot meet with everyone for lunch or coffee, or even schedule an appointment at our office. If we did, we wouldn’t sell any real estate. In fact, during the height of the selling season, I kept my non-sales lunches and appointments to a bare minimum. There were just too many buyers and sellers that needed our full attention. I have a family that needs me as well and that’s always a tricky balancing act. With that said, I often get the question, “How do we get on your referral list, Dan?” The answer may be best answered with the following ideas:
1) I am Italian and as such, I am extremely loyal. It’s in my genes. I had a lender who came along side me when I first got out of real estate school and he got me off the ground. Without his support in the first year of business, my real estate career would have been short-lived. Many years later, he is still my number one referred lender for our team. I am loyal. While it may be too late to get on our referral list, I always tell this story to lenders because I believe that their best source of business is to befriend an up and coming agent. If they can help a new agent start their business, chances are, they’ll have a recurring source of referrals for years to come.
2) You may not actually want to be our lender. I say that because we are tough on our lenders. Closing late or not on time is not an option here at the Colorado Dream House Team. Delays, not meeting contract deadlines, poor follow ups and/or poor performance with our clients will mean a quick end to our relationship. We are always looking for people that go above and beyond what anyone would expect and I am not talking about sending out birthday cards to our clients.
3) If you really want to know the best way to get your foot in the door with us or any other big team (lean in)… send us a referral so we can see how you perform. Seriously, I am amazed at how many mortgage lenders don’t think of this as a strategy. I am not going to refer a new lender to one of my clients until I am confident that they are going to perform at a high level.
Lastly, we love our relationship with the lending community. There are many fine mortgage brokers and bankers out there that have done an outstanding job for us over the years. Let me close by saying that … without you, we would have no business. Thank you!