The mortgage market today requires professionals to build relationships with real estate agents to be successful. If you want to create a lasting relationship with real estate agents, you will see an increase in business and a wider network of connections.

If you want to improve your performance and be successful, forming strong business relationships is key. While it does take some time to build these relationships, it’s worth it in the end. Here are some tips to help you create strong partnerships with real estate agents and ways to make yourself stand out from the competition.

7 Tips to Strengthen Relationships with Real Estate Agents

1.) Be Proactive

For real estate agents, it is much more satisfying to deal with borrowers who take the initiative to stay in touch and update them on their progress. It shows that the borrower is taking their loan process seriously and is willing to communicate openly – two qualities that will make the transaction go much more smoothly.

It is important to be polite when you are giving updates and listening to your agent so that they can do what the client wants. You both have to work together to serve the client.

A good relationship with real estate agents is important for mortgage brokers to get referral sources. This can help your business grow and set you apart from the competition.

Skylar Welch, an AIME member, notes that realtors expect mortgage bankers to prioritize their referrals. Welch believes that providing this level of service strengthens the relationship between mortgage bankers and realtors.

2.) Hold Yourself Accountable

Working in the loan industry can be complicated and unpredictable. You might have to learn how to adapt to unexpected situations and experience hardships beyond your control. However, any good real estate agent will understand that you have limitations. As long as you are honest about what’s going on and take responsibility for your mistakes, you can still develop strong business relationships even when processes do not go as planned.

You should tell your real estate partners if you think there might be a problem with getting the home loan approved. If you’re not sure, it’s better to be honest and say so. Waiting until the last minute to tell them could ruin the deal.

Accountability is a key factor that can attract high-performing real estate agents.

3.) Establish a System for Communicating

It is just as important to communicate as it is to be accountable. Real estate agents and their clients look forward to hearing from you, and the longer you go without communicating, the more difficult the situation becomes for the agent. When a loan officer does not communicate effectively, the real estate agent is left to deal with the consequences.

You will be miles ahead of the competition if you establish a system for maintaining communication with your real estate partners. After you have made a connection with them, let them know about your system and follow through with your commitments. This will demonstrate to the agent you are working with that you are not just interested in the transaction or making money; you are just as focused on helping them achieve the final goal.

If you’re an independent mortgage broker looking for an effective way to communicate with your real estate partners, a customer relationship management (CRM) system could be a good option. CRM systems can help you share customer data, streamline processes, and increase profitability for both parties.

If you want to spend more time finding mortgage clients in your local community, you need to strengthen the tools you use to communicate with real estate partners. A CRM system will help you develop clear and consistent procedures, which will in turn create transparent and trusting relationships with real estate agents.

Our network partner Lion Desk is a CRM platform that is easy to use and customize. It has features like video emailing, text messaging, and lead nurturing.

4.) Connect and Communicate on Social Media

One way that real estate agents and loan officers can improve their communication and grow their brands is by having a social media presence. Today, many people are using social media to stay relevant in the industry.

Tag each other in posts, share content, and link to each other’s websites to create opportunities for both parties to be more successful.

If you can find ways to connect with potential business partners through social media, it will demonstrate to loan officers how to get clients as mortgage brokers using contemporary communication methods. This is a very effective tactic, and it benefits both parties. The more you help each other promote your businesses on social media, the more likely it is that your businesses will grow.

If you want to find a system that will assist you in your social media endeavors, you should check out leadPops. It is a cutting-edge platform that can help you take your social marketing to the next level and create efficient lead generation funnels.

5.) Realize You’re on the Same Team

It’s common to not get along with some people you work with. However, there will also be many people who make it easy for you to win. The best way to use your real estate partners to your advantage is to approach them with the mindset that you are on the same team.

If you want to grow your business as a mortgage broker, it can be helpful to partner with real estate agents. Both parties are typically focused on providing a good experience for the client and helping them through the home buying process. If you’re able to help the agent’s clients be happy with the outcome, the agent will likely continue to send business your way. This can help to establish trust between you and the agent.

When we close a deal, we’re also marketing to our real estate agents. We let them know that they’re our clients, too, and we hope to have a conversation about continuing to work together.

6.) Create Value

The way that real estate agents get mortgage clients is changing. In the past, agents would simply drop off rate sheets or send emails once a week. However, in order to get agents to start sending business your way, you need to offer something of value to them. This doesn’t necessarily have to be leads, but it should be something that the agent will find beneficial.

It is easier for a real estate agent to reciprocate your positive intentions when they see that you are trying to contribute to their success. Try to establish both a business and a personal relationship with the agent. If you treat the agent like a friend, it will be easier to create trust and work together to build your businesses.

It’s important to us that we have a good relationship with our realtor, one where we can pick up the phone and be honest with each other, and that it feels more like we’re talking to a friend than a business associate.

7.) Take the Initiative to Get to Know Them

Like any relationship, business relationships are built on trust. Trust is the foundation that these relationships are built on and without it, there is nothing to build on. The problem is that sometimes people want to skip over building trust and get right to what’s in it for them.

When building relationships with real estate agents, you need to take things slow. You can’t expect them to work with you immediately. Social media is a great place to start. Find and follow agents on social media to get started.

The goal of interacting with someone you see online is to get to know them better as a business person and to evaluate if you would be able to work together successfully in the long term. You can achieve this goal by liking, commenting, and sharing information on their posts.

The most important thing to focus on when meeting a real estate agent in person is having a good conversation. Talk to them about their business interests and make sure to exchange contact information so you can stay in touch.

Our top priority is making sure our real estate partners look good by being on schedule and having great options that leave clients with an amazing experience that they’ll tell their friends and family about.

The real estate industry is driven by relationships. If you want to be successful in this industry, you need to build strong relationships with your colleagues. The tips above will help you become a trusted partner in the eyes of your real estate colleagues.

5 Ways to Increase Your Real Estate Referrals

1. Create Buzzworthy Client Events

Strategy cost: $500 to $1,000

Time commitment:
1 day plus follow-up

Go-to Close resource:

10 Unique Client Appreciation Event Ideas

One way to get your clients talking about you with their friends and family is to invite them to be a part of events that they will remember. These events can be live or virtual, and as simple or elaborate as your budget allows.

Top 1% Chicago Realtor Akos Straub has perfected this strategy. Here’s what he has to say:

” Some of the best opportunities to generate referrals come from private events that my past and current clients hold, which usually involve no more than 20 couples or families.

Before the outbreak of COVID-19, I had arranged a private screening of the new Aladdin film at a downtown AMC cinema. I had booked all the seats for a Saturday morning showing, and provided popcorn, drinks, and a goody bag with Aladdin-themed gifts. So when anyone was asked about their weekend, my name and the event was bound to come up in conversation.

2. Build Community & Connection Online

Strategy cost: Between $3,500 and $6,500 a year, depending on your market

Time commitment:
About four hours a week

Go-to Close resource: 
How Parkbench Helps Agents Drive Community Connections

If you want to continue receiving referrals from your past clients, you need to stay top of their mind. Share both real estate market and lifestyle content online regularly, and encourage your social connections to share it with their friends and family.

A community website can be created with Parkbench to be a source of information for the community to learn of events happening near them. Business owners can be interviewed and recommendations given for the best places in the town or city for food, drink, and leisure activities such as parks and dog walking.

To see if your market is available on Parkbench, check the website and reserve your spot. You can then start talking about local hot spots in your community.

Miami luxury listing agent Brad Cooke suggests a way to make your online content and social messages highly shareable:

I stay visible to my clients by advertising new listings, sending out postcards and e-blasts, and so on. But I also try to include content like “My Favorite Places.” People are more likely to share something if they agree with it, so if I can give them a reason to share my message, I will.

3. Stay Top-of-Mind Using Key Market Insights

Strategy cost:

Time commitment:
One hour a week

Go-to Close resource:

How to Do a Comparative Market Analysis: A Step-by-Step Guide

If you want to get more referrals, don’t assume that your clients’ only interest in real estate is buying or selling a property. Share market insights with them to show that you’re an expert who can advise them on how a property will perform as an investment. Make this information easy for them to share, and you’ll reach a wider audience.

This will help you keep in regular contact with your clients, keep them updated on the market, and make you look like a rockstar. Use your real estate customer relationship manager (CRM) or your email marketing platform to create templated messages you can use to send timely stats to your different client types. Then, pull the numbers from your market every other week and fill in the blanks. This will help you keep in regular contact with your clients to keep them updated on the market, which will make you look like a rockstar.

Manhattan luxury real estate agent Alyssa Martin uses this strategy regularly. Here’s her take on it:

You need to be aware of the latest real estate trends and share this information with clients, both current and future. This way you can stay on their minds and educate them at the same time. Most people don’t use the same agent twice, so it’s important for me to let my clients, their friends, and all New Yorkers know that I’m reliable, compassionate, and determined.

4. Cross-pollinate Your Prospecting & Referral Game

Strategy cost:
$100 to $500 per postcard mailing, depending on volume

Time commitment:
Three hours a month

Go-to Close resource: 
15 Clever Real Estate Prospecting Ideas to Boost Your GCI

Your chances of getting referrals from people in your neighborhood go up when your different marketing efforts all send the same message. It’s a good idea to start with people in your neighborhood because they’re already in your sphere of influence, even if they’re not active clients yet.

Before you start, you should make sure your prospecting tools are in good condition. Lab Coat Agent’s Marketing Center has everything you need to create professional-looking business cards, postcards, flyers, door hangers, and more. It’s like Canva, but specifically for real estate agents. This site will help you create media that is recognizable and consistent, making it easier for people to refer you.

Brooklyn expert and New York real estate rock star Marie Bromberg shared with us:

I often network in Bushwick, the neighborhood where I live, and it just so happens that a parent, whose daughter went to the same school as my daughter, got my postcard in the mail, and we matched. This person was a part of my school circle, but my extra touch with the postcard helped to make the connection.

5. Ask for Real Estate Referrals at the Happiest Moments

Strategy cost: FREE

Time commitment:
30 seconds

Go-to Close resource:

9 Tips to Earn More Reviews & Help Build Referrals & Repeat Clients

Although the closing table is definitely a time to celebrate in a real estate transaction, don’t forget about the other moments that are worth celebrating as well. These would include finding the perfect property for a buyer, or getting a full-price offer from a seller.

Some of the best times to remind your clients how appreciated their reviews and referrals are when they’re feeling emotional. This lets them know how much you value their positive experiences.

We heard more about this strategy from commercial real estate guru George Smith:

” The best time to ask for referrals is when your client is happy.

I was able to negotiate free rent for a client once. I congratulated them and asked if there was anyone else they knew that I could help. If you ask, you will receive.