Building the ideal mortgage experience requires a thoughtful balance of technology and personal interaction.
Technology brings many benefits to the mortgage process. Not only does it add transparency and flexibility, but it also increases efficiency and scalability, accelerating the process for borrowers and decreasing errors. Technology makes the loan origination process less stressful on consumers as it is a familiar way to engage them in the process and help them understand it better. However, there remain specific points in the process at which borrowers prefer the option for human interaction, and real estate lenders must ensure their tech stack leaves space for a human touch.
According to ServiceLink’s State of Homebuying Report, more homebuyers want to leverage technology in the mortgage process and improve the experience. The reasons? 63 percent of respondents note the added convenience and ease of use while 59 percent seek efficiency. While technology doesn’t play a unique role in everyone’s experiences, it is still important to innovate and offer as an added benefit. For those entering the market at a younger age, they want to have their questions answered and seek assurance that their loan process is on track. Additionally, technology can increase transparency – building the confidence that borrowers seek.
A winning formula
The challenge for lenders is to get the mix of digitization and human touch just right, making the most of both technology and people to maximize efficiency, quality control, and customer service. By combining an attention to customer-service and an experienced team with the ability to schedule appraisals and closings at their convenience, ServiceLink helps lenders find the perfect balance.
Matthew Woodhouse, managing director, valuations, at ServiceLink, explains, “It’s important to identify the critical human touchpoints in your process and then determine how to enhance them. Building the EXOS® technology platform from the ground up allowed us to make strategic decisions about which parts of the process should be fully automated and which would benefit from continued human touch. We always rely on insights from subject-matter experts — those with hands-on involvement in the processes — to make sure we’re getting the balance right. For example, we built our appraiser module with appraisers not just in mind, but alongside us in the room.”
In some places, full automation not only makes sense but is expected, Woodhouse adds. Many back-end processes benefit from full automation as well. Here, too, choices must be carefully considered.
Technology enhances the personal experience
In addition to adding efficiency, speed and savings to the mortgage process, technology can help lenders know their customers, prospects, and markets better, which can lead to more meaningful engagements and stronger brand loyalty.
“Technology enables us to analyze hundreds of thousands of transactions quickly, which helps us adapt products to the changing market and provides lenders with insights to help them better serve their customers,” says Woodhouse. “For example, by analyzing borrower behaviors in a particular geographic market, we can help lenders see that their process is being slowed not because of internal issues but because, when scheduling an appraisal, borrowers in their market tend to skip over three appointments before locking one in. We communicate this to lenders through their dashboards; they can then advise their loan officers to take proactive steps such as alerting the borrower of a scheduling request and making sure they understand that cleaning their house isn’t necessary for the appraisal.”
Lenders that are taking advantage of the opportunities to strengthen their customer relationships through technology understand that personal service and digital experiences deliver best when they work together. “Technology can certainly add efficiencies, accuracy and speed to the mortgage process,” Woodhouse concludes, “but personal service will always be essential to outstanding customer experience.”
With decades of experience and commitment to service, ServiceLink guides lender clients effectively and efficiently through these processes – and matches them with the technological enhancements that best suit their needs. Our team is dedicated to supporting our lenders as they use technology to modernize their workflows, without sacrificing the consumer experience.
The bottom line: lenders and their service providers must invest in understanding the needs and preferences of today’s consumers and using that insight to continue advancing the digital mortgage experience. Lenders who get it right will inevitably gain share and increase revenue.
Visit svclnk.com to learn more about mortgage technology built to enhance service and profitability.