Midwest Top Producers see first-time home buyers as key to success

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Mortgage originators expect first time home buyers to be a big source of business for mortgage originators this year. But a larger share of Midwestern loan officers compared with their counterparts nationwide said working with that group was extremely important for their personal success this year, the 2019 Top Producers Survey found.

Since many first-time buyers have problems saving for a 20% down payment, Midwestern loan officers placed a higher emphasis on the ability to offer high loan-to-value ratio products as the key to their prosperity this year.

Of the Top Producers that work in the Midwest, 91% said it was extremely important for them to meet their origination goals in 2019 by working with first-time home buyers, while another 7% ascribed a lesser degree of importance.

For the national sample, 83% said it was extremely important to work with first-time buyers to meet their production aims.

Many among this cohort of potential borrowers lack the savings for a down payment.

The biggest misconception about the mortgage process that consumers had, said Jeff Dulla of United Home Loans, is that they need to put 20% down and that private mortgage insurance "is for certain an awful thing.

"To correct this, I model out different down payment and loan program offerings that fit the client's down payment and monthly payment needs," said Dulla, a vice president in the company's Westchester, Ill. office. "Often clients are shocked that a 10% down option with PMI is well within their budget parameters."

So being able to offer low down payment mortgages was extremely important to 70% of Midwest loan officer plus slightly or somewhat important to another 23%; for all loan officers, 56% called it extremely important, while 29% said it was slightly or somewhat important.

When it comes to drumming up new business, a higher percentage of Midwest originators, 59% said social media marketing was important for their job satisfaction, versus 44% of all respondents.

"I have adapted by branding myself personally within Guaranteed Rate," said Christin Luckman, a senior vice president in one of the company's Chicago offices. "My puppy is my mascot and he is present in all of my ad campaigns for social media, billboards, email marketing, postcard marketing and digital."

Here are the top 20 mortgage originators based in the Midwest:

Rank Name Company City Volume # of loans
1 Samuel Sharp Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 136,145,662 434
2 John Noldan Guaranteed Rate Elmhurst, Ill. $ 128,516,615 442
3 Tom Lavallee Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 84,597,926 292
4 Daniel Rogers Guaranteed Rate Palos Heights, Ill. $ 81,970,074 489
5 JD Cortese Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 81,488,529 218
6 Amber Arwine Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 80,636,243 307
7 Stephen Delagrange Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 76,992,100 261
8 Christin Luckman Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 71,885,859 201
9 Matt Paradis Guaranteed Rate Geneva, Ill. $ 64,591,351 289
10 Dan Rock Guaranteed Rate Glen Ellyn, Ill. $ 59,648,702 234
11 Joshua Jones loanDepot Park Ridge, Ill. $ 57,506,736 226
12 Danny Delgado Guaranteed Rate Naperville, Ill. $ 57,269,093 260
13 Thomas Kuehl Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 56,613,095 185
14 Jeff Dulla United Home Loans Westchester, Ill. $ 54,894,413 139
15 Ben Milam Guaranteed Rate Naperville, Ill. $ 54,242,735 201
16 Kyle Gillespie Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 48,328,790 122
17 Matthew McDevitt Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 46,687,760 203
18 Matt Carr Guaranteed Rate chicago, Ill. $ 44,474,651 159
19 Michael Murray Guaranteed Rate Chicago, Ill. $ 43,175,073 142
20 Randy Ernst Guaranteed Rate Schaumburg, Ill. $ 37,221,660 123
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First time home buyers Purchase Down payments Referral marketing Housing market Guaranteed Rate Illinois Top Producers