As Massachusetts gets more diverse, being able to authentically market themselves to specific homebuyer demographics could give some mortgage loan originators an edge.

Capturing the refinance boom has been and will continue to be critical for loan originators. So many people have lost their jobs, and refinancing options will be essential for many families. 

I expect the demand for cashout refinances to rise within the Latino community given the low rates and loss of income felt by many. large percentage of Latinos are relying on their home equity to make it through these tough times. Family is so important to us, and we’re all doing our part to maintain financial security for both our immediate and extended family at home. 

Even those who are not necessarily pulling out equity are realizing life can be a little easier with a lower rate. We’ve refinanced hundreds of customers in the last few months who are now appreciating a significant monthly savings. So many are consumed by the daytoday in the world we currently live. They just need a reminder that we can help with some of the financial burden if they just take five minutes to call so that I can evaluate their finances.  

 Industry Stepped Up 

There is definitely a shortage of inventory in the housing market, but I recently am starting to see this change. People are slowly starting to entertain buying and selling, and I credit my partners in the industry for this transformation 

Showing properties in a safe manner was certainly a challenge at first. I have the privilege to work with some of the best realtors in the business. They have worked tirelessly to make our clients feel comfortable about buying and selling a home during this pandemic. They’re finding ways to complete every stage of the real estate transaction in the virtual world, something I honestly could not picture just a few months ago. 

I have so much respect and pride for how my real estate friends have rallied together to help their clients. They really didn’t have a lot of time to react, but they found ways to adapt and get deals done to help their clients. They quickly learned how to sell homes while practicing social distancing. The amount of people who are buying properties without seeing them is incredible to me. They’re managing to complete every stage of the real estate transaction in a virtual world, and for the most part, we’re meeting deadlines and closing on time.  

Who were the top loan originators in your region in 2019? See the complete listings.

It’s not just the realtors who are doing a wonderful job. It’s also the attorneys, title agents, appraisers and everyone in the industry who have come together. I’ve always loved being a part of the real estate community, but I have never been more proud of my colleagues than now. I’d be lying if I said there weren’t hiccups and delays in the beginning, but we all have adjusted, deals are getting done and clients are happy.  

Most of the home appraisals are now being performed without an in-home visit. They’re surveying the exterior and reviewing photos remotely. This was uncomfortable at first for many, but the guidelines now offer more flexibility for appraisers to evaluate how much a home is worth without actually entering the property.  

Crisis Opened New Doors 

Virtual tours are certainly not new to the real estate industry, but before COVID-19 they certainly weren’t the norm for my real estate partners  it just wasn’t necessary for our client base. Being forced to adapt sometimes opens new doors. I expect to see more virtual tours even after COVID-19 in my community, and who knows, it might just become the norm.  

Now more than ever, loan originators need to be financial advisors to our clients, especially those who are looking to purchase their first home. Many will have trouble paying their bills as the coronavirus pandemic continues, and we need to help them protect their credit score.  

Luisa Bedoya

It’s so important to let them know that there are other options. I am trying to make my past and present clients aware that there are many hardship programs that kick into gear when disaster strikes. I’ve been advising them to call their credit card companies to make them aware of the financial impact the coronavirus has had on their ability to pay.  

Remind your clients to protect themselves now so that when they’re back on track, poor credit won’t have an impact, and they’ll be ready to buy their home. It’s more important now than ever to maintain a high level of service for our customers and partners. They’ll remember how you treated them when it’s all over. Be safe. 

Luisa Bedoya is the senior loan officer and branch manager at MSA Mortgage in Revere. 

A Positive Outlook on the Coronavirus Pandemic

by Banker & Tradesman time to read: 3 min