Thinking of becoming a new mortgage agent in Ontario? You’ve passed the REMIC exam and are excited to get started. But in your search for the perfect mortgage brokerage, what is expected from you in an interview?
In this video, I’m going to share with you 5 steps on how to prepare for the interview. Not only will this get you on the right path to success, but it will help you NAIL the interview and stand out from your peers.
Victor here, and welcome to a series of videos that goes behind the scenes of the mortgage industry. If you’re a new mortgage agent, and want to receive easy to understand mortgage industry tips, hit that subscribe button.
Brokerages Have Different Hiring Practices
Now, in your search for the ideal mortgage brokerage, you’ll quickly discover that different brokerages have vastly different hiring practices. The feedback I’ve received from my interviewees is that they’ve seen everything from a large group zoom meeting, to impersonal presentations of commission structures and fees.
However, what I’m about to share with you is my own hiring practice, and what I would look for in a potential candidate or new mortgage agent. I believe these 5 steps are a great way to start a mortgage business, because it helps identify and reach your goals.
But before I get into that, I want to share 2 main questions that most employers are looking to answer about you, regardless of the industry. And that is 1) Can the person do the job. That is, do they possess the skills, the knowledge, the expertise and experience to do the job. And 2) Will the person do the job? In other words, do they have the energy, the drive, the character traits, the leadership skills and persistence to carry out the job. I want you to consider these questions as we proceed.
Ok, let’s get into the 5 steps to help us establish the framework for a conversation with a brokerage.
1. Have a Passion for Real Estate and the Mortgage Industry
As Steve Jobs famously said, “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
That passion, or that fire inside of some people that drives them down a certain career path — is difficult to fake. Either you feel it, or you don’t, and if you’re not sure if you feel it, well, there’s your answer.
So what does it mean, really? Perhaps it’s a constant desire to learn about the industry, about sales, marketing, or business psychology, through books, seminars and youtube videos. It can translate into how you create your online presence, and how much energy you bring to your audience. But most importantly, the people who will notice your passion the most are your clients. This takes us to step #2.
2. Develop a Marketing and Sales Strategy
Think about who’s in your network and who can be centres of influence, such as real estate agents, financial advisors, accountants and lawyers. Who is your natural market? How do you plan on building this network and developing trusted relationships with these referral sources?
Perhaps you’re thinking about marketing online with social media. While this is a great way to generate leads, plan ahead and create an advertising budget that you’re comfortable with. Think about your target audience and what message you will want to convey to help you stand out from the crowd. In order to do that, you’ll need to do some research on the industry. Take a look at your competitors and what they’re doing. Study what makes them successful, and identify their weaknesses and strengths.
3. Forecast Your Revenue
Here, you set an expectation for your sales goal in the first 90 days. Be realistic. You need to be able to justify any assumptions or projections. What is your expected closing ratio for qualified leads, and how many leads would you have to obtain to meet your sales goal? For example, if you want to close 1 deal in the first month, and you’re anticipating a closing ratio of 20%, it might look something like this. You talk to 20 people, and out of the 20, 5 become qualified leads. 20% of 5 is 1. So 1 deal closes. It’s important to understand and keep track of your closing and conversion ratios, so that you align your marketing efforts correctly, saving you time and money.
4. Describe your ideal mortgage brokerage
Once you’ve worked on the first 3 steps, now you’re ready to identify the brokerage type that is a good fit for you. Is it, perhaps, a super brokerage with hundreds of agents? Or a smaller, more personal boutique brokerage. What kind of training do you require? Do you prefer group or individual coaching and mentoring? What are the tools and technology you require to run your business efficiently and carry out your objectives as per steps 1-3?
Finally, if you’ve done all of the above, you’re now ready to…
5. Create a simple 90-day business plan
You’ll take all of the work completed in steps 1 – 4 and formalize it into a business plan. Why is this important? Because it will help identify your goals and establish a framework to achieve them. Far too often I’ve asked interviewees about how they intend to build their business in the first 90 days, and the answer is “I don’t know”. Now to be fair, some people are looking for brokerages to supply them leads, and that’s ok. But that’s more of a mortgage “order taker”, and not so much a mortgage agent.
So back to the business plan. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate 30 page plan with pie charts and graphs. As I mentioned before, you’re basically taking all the information and research you’ve already done in steps 1 through 4.
Basic Business Plan Components for a New Mortgage Agent
Here’s a guideline to just a few key components:
- Mission Statement. Just a quick note this: Ask yourself, what makes you unique and stand out? And what can you offer that will make a difference in the lives of your clients? And why will it be successful?
- Market Analysis
- Marketing and Sales Strategy
- Forecasted Income
Here’s a bonus tip: Always, always conduct yourself in a professional manner. Professionalism goes a long way in this industry.
Now, if you’ve done your homework and can bring all 5 steps to the interview, you’ll absolute nail the interview. I know I would be impressed! In fact, we’re always looking for outstanding candidates and new mortgage agents to join our elite team. If you think you have what it takes, and want to take your business to the next level, then I invite you to apply on Indeed with your resume. Or visit our contact page.