8 Real Estate Lessons from Digital Mortgage Trailblazers

Digital Mortgage Trailblazers brought together the most forward-thinking leaders in real estate today to discuss the future of the industry. Where is it going? What should I do to stay relevant as a lender, title agent, or broker? What should we be doing to keep up with the changes?

Delve into these eight lessons we learned from our speakers and what they envision for the future of real estate.

1. Don’t wait to innovate.

One thing we learned at Digital Mortgage Trailblazers is that adopting technology is no longer optional: it’s a requirement in order to stay relevant.

Jaime Borashko of United Wholesale Mortgage recommends adapting to new technology, not only for the sake of the end consumer, but in order to advance the industry in general. The norm for anything new in mortgage is to wait out the changes but she recommends embracing change to meet growing customer demands for quicker, more secure transactions.

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2. For real estate technology, seeing is believing.

Real estate technology is changing whole stages of the home buying process: we're seeing everything from loan origination to the home closing move away from paper and towards the digital world.

For those skeptical of technology, Marvin Stone of Stewart Title recommends seeing the technology first-hand to get a better feel for what it does. Working with your technology suppliers to get personalized walkthroughs and demos can be all it takes to envision exactly what that technology can do for you.

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3. Technology on its own won’t revolutionize the industry.

The key for making technology work doesn’t lie in it simply being available to use. It's knowing how it works with what we do everyday. 

Erin Dee of Thrive Mortgage explains that we as an industry at large need to understand the how behind the technology and how it reshapes our roles. With that in mind, we'll be better equipped to adapt to the technology and use it to the best of its ability. 

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4. Now is the time for modernization in real estate and mortgage.

The industry has lacked major change for the greater part of 20 years but we’ve seen major movement in only the past few years. What does this mean? This signals to us that the industry is ready for change, now.

For Frank Obringer of Coldwell Banker, he sees the modernization of real estate everyday. But the true motivator for embracing technology at a leadership level is knowing they need to serve as tech role models for their agents. Their staff look up to them to be the agents of change and innovation. 

The lesson here: the key to staying relevant in real estate from a leadership perspective is staying ahead of and adapting to industry change.

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Learn More about Online Closings

5. Consumer education is key in the adoption of online closings.

The purchase of a home is one of the most stressful things a person may experience in their lifetime. But an online closing can help relieve stress at the closing table: by empowering the customer to close, when and where they want. No more coordinating schedules, wasted time spent traveling to the title agent’s office, or delayed move-ins due to a missed signature on the closing documents.

But it’s up to us the industry to set online closings as the gold standard. Jaime Borashko of United Wholesale Mortgage stresses that education is key in setting that standard. 

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6. Going digital is all about moving things online.

When thinking about going completely digital, it can quickly feel like an insurmountable task. How do you register your note? How will the signer get access to their documents? How can I get a notary online to notarize these documents electronically?

But it's not as complicated as you would think.

When defining the digital mortgage, Marvin Stone of Stewart Title simply described it as moving things online. The industry needs to reframe its outlook on going digital, not as an impossible task but simply as meeting the growing consumer demand for convenience.

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7. Don’t be afraid to take the digital road.

Taking the first step to go digital is a hard one. There’s uncertainty with the unknown. And change can be downright uncomfortable, especially if you’ve been doing closings the same way for years.

Angela Lozano of Title Forward’s advice: don’t be afraid to take the first step. That first step might be easier than you think so be sure to include your partners early on in the process of going digital.

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8. Adapting to technology is a competitive advantage.

It’s no secret: the real estate industry has been slow to adapt to new technology. But James Duncan of Thrive Mortgage has seen first-hand that, for those that resist complacency, they gain a considerable competitive advantage in the market.

Lenders, title agents, and consumers are able to close on a home quicker than ever before, all thanks to technology. Quicker closes mean more business: and that's a huge advantage over your competitors. For those that resist change run the risk of getting left behind.

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What lessons did you learn at Digital Mortgage Trailblazers? Share yours with us on Twitter by using the hashtag #Trailblazers18

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