CEO Opinion: Screen Sharing is the Key to Online Mortgage Lending in the Digital Age

In a world where networ­king is highly valued by indi­vi­duals in many diffe­rent indus­tries, there is a curious upsurge in the use of Internet tools in the mortgage industry. While opinion is divided, statis­tics speak for them­selves, showing that screen sharing and other online tools are beco­ming popular means, which mortgage brokers can leverage to improve their offe­ring to clients and thereby increase turnovers.

These days, a consumer can buy anything online — from music to health products, groce­ries, cars and clot­hing. Finan­cial insti­tu­tions are beco­ming incre­a­singly aware of the bene­fits of being a click away from their target audi­ence, hence the online upsurge in avai­la­bi­lity of payday loans, credit cards and insurance. Would this be true for the mortgage lending industry? Let’s look at what the facts have to say.

1. Mobile Technology Drives Growth

With mobile tech­no­logy constantly growing and beco­ming more widely avail­able, consu­mers expect quicker access to avail­able solu­tions. This is demons­trated by the fact that the UKMor­tgages appli­ca­tion, which was laun­ched by Mortgage Brain in 2012, has been down­loaded well over 81,000 times. It has also been accessed and used more than 826,000 times

It has resulted in consu­mers viewing broker contact details more than 43,000 times, resul­ting in an increase in low-cost lead genera­tion for the company.

2. Despite Online Availability, the Mortgage Broker is Still Needed

Like many other players in the finan­cial services arena, mortgage brokers have had a bad rap in the past. Instead of working through a mortgage broker, many clients have opted to go directly to lenders for a loan. However, with credit laws and lending poli­cies constantly being tigh­tened or changed, it is beco­ming more diffi­cult for appli­cants to present approval-worthy appli­ca­tions. When they are declined, clients are left with no choice but to contact mortgage brokers for assistance.

Lacking the capital and the infra­st­ruc­ture of big finan­cial insti­tu­tions, the indi­vi­dual mortgage broker can use screen sharing to fulfill a number of important customer service-related func­tions at a frac­tion of the cost, and without the hassle of trave­ling to see clients.

Our company recently spoke with Ian Symmonds, director of Surrey-based Easy Street Finan­cial Services in the UK, who uses Mikogo to meet with clients who are not keen to travel. When Symmonds and his team receive calls from poten­tial new clients, they can instantly invite them over the phone to a screen sharing session and proceed to present and discuss mortgage options with the visual aid of their proprie­tary mortgage advice software.

3. The Market is Ready

Robert McLister from Cana­dian Mortgage Trends recently published an article which high­lighted asto­un­ding statis­tics related to clients’ open­ness to using online tools in the finan­cial services arena, and speci­fi­cally where mortgages are concerned. The study was origi­nally published on Busi­ness Wire and stated that:

  • 47% of home buyers surveyed used tech­no­logy to save money.
  • 92% felt that tech­no­logy saved them time.
  • 90% had a posi­tive experience.
  • 71% used tech­no­logy to submit applications.
  • 94% of appli­cants still commu­ni­cated with their service provider telephonically.
  • 86% of recent home­buyers were comfor­table sharing personal infor­ma­tion online.

And the most promi­sing statistic from the survey:

93% of respondents felt that working remo­tely enabled them to save time, energy and money on things they woul­d’ve had to do in person, had it not been for the tech­no­logy at their disposal.

Discus­sion: As a mortgage broker, how do you see your role chan­ging with regards to the market’s desire for more stream­lined, online systems? As a customer, have you engaged with mortgage lenders or other finan­cial insti­tu­tions via modern online communications?

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