The Most Important Conversation A Lender and Agent Must Have

Do you focus on getting loans, or on building relationships? In this video, Todd Duncan discusses why he chose relationships, and how that has led to his success. Check it out. 

Recently, I created this video for Dave Savage. I wanted to share it with all of you today because of how important it is.

Choosing Relationships Over Getting Loans

When I was a rookie loan officer my mentor asked me a question. “Do you want to focus on getting loans or on building relationships?” I was confused and he knew it. Then he stated, “Transactions can make you a living but relationships can make you a fortune.”

I chose relationships and I never looked back. Watch this ten minute video to learn more about why I made that choice, and how making this choice can change your life as well. 

In just ten years with a total of 7 key agent relationships, we were able to help 5,962 families

buy and sell real estate. The quick math tells you that each agent averaged 85 sides per year. What is most important to know about this number is that half of them came from me, my team and our buyer/seller loyalty program which today I have trademarked, the circle of cash flow.

How Relationships Build Business

Here’s a key example from one of my top agents, Brenda. She referred a physician to me who was buying an $800,000 home and needed me to do the financing. John and his wife Debra and I met and we had a pre-purchase consultation. (Agents – refer everyone to your lender to have this conversation). 

Shortly after they went into contract and a month later, they had the keys to their new home. A day after closing, my assistant Nancy called as she did on every deal to get a survey on how we did. She’d been cross trained that when that survey was exceptional, ask for referrals. John referred us to Tom Danielson who was a golfing buddy, but more importantly, the president of a local community bank. Tom and I met and by the end of that meeting, we had the most important conversation a lender and agent must have.

The lender for Eldorado Bank and their 3,500 depositors. Over the next 10 years, I provided real estate financing for more than 1,000 of those depositors and Brenda received an average of 25 buy or sell sides from the bank through me every year.

How to Build B2B Relationships

Since I consider myself an expert in B2B relationships, I will suggest that you ask the question, loan officer or agent, do you have this type of sales and marketing engine built? If the answer is no, you both are leaving hundreds of thousands of dollars on the table for someone else to grab.

When we teach lenders and agents the secret sauce to building productive partnerships together, it comes down to 4 simple things. I call them the 4 C’s:

  1. First, there must be Chemistry
  2. Second, there must be Connection
  3. Third, there must be Collaboration (irrefutable principle #1 and #3)
  4. Fourth, there must be Conversion

To keep it super simple it comes down to two things.

The Agent Must Refer All Potential Buyers to the Lender

First, the agent must refer every potential buyer they come across to the lender as soon as they come across them whether they are ready to buy or not. and if they are approved somewhere else, and you want commission insurance, your lender must offer a “second opinion”, and perhaps win the deal from the other lender. The agent must refer strategically. 

The Lender Must Cross-Sell the Agent

The most important conversation a lender and agent must have second, the lender must cross sell the agent, secure the appointment successfully close that loan, link that buyer to that agent and build a “referral tree” so that every buyer that is referred who then refers a friend or colleague that referral can be traced back to the initial agent. 

While there are a lot of conversations that lenders and agents should have to be super productive, one of the best conversations is entitled, the lost leads conversation.

How Lenders and Agents Will Naturally Make Each Other More Money

If it becomes super clear, super quickly that because we do this together every week, both the agent and the lender will continue to do more and more business. the agent makes money they otherwise would not have. the lender makes money they otherwise would not have. And the partnership attracts a constant stream of buyer and seller referrals.

To keep this growing, meet weekly and explore three powerful questions together.

  1. Who have you met in the last 7 days that you’re not sure will use you as an agent?
  2. Who are you showing property to that I have not yet conducted a pre-purchase consultation?
  3. What open houses are you hosting this week where I can help you strategically?

The most important conversation a lender and agent must have then the lender must update the agent on the family tree and where new referrals are coming in from previous weeks marketing efforts.

Done well, this type of partnership will have years and years of productivity and profits and life will be much more simple following this type of strategy.


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Todd Duncan speaking at a High Trust Sales Academy event

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