Mortgage lender, builder pairings have higher satisfaction levels

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Homebuilders that team with mortgage lenders get higher levels of borrower satisfaction with the finance process, according to a loanDepot study. This comes as more consumers are evaluating financing options first, highlighting an opportunity to reach them earlier on.

About 76% of consumers who financed through a homebuilder were satisfied with their experience, citing ease of use, competitive rates and incentives as top reasons for their positive sentiments. But only 39% of respondents reported being offered this opportunity.

"Homebuilders who leverage the services of experienced, new home lenders—and especially those that focus on exceptional borrower experiences—will definitely have the advantage in competitive markets," said Dan Peña, senior vice president of National Joint Ventures for loanDepot, in a press release. Over the years, loanDepot or its subsidiaries entered into several joint ventures with homebuilders.

On both sides of the fence, teaming up has benefits; mortgage lenders can leverage homebuilders as a means of acquiring new customers, while builders have a dedicated financing source they can offer to buyers. It's an opportunity to get in front of prospective shoppers at a time when more than two-thirds reported being pre-qualified or pre-approved prior to seeking out a house.

"Preapprovals are invaluable for giving prospective home buyers peace of mind, especially first-time buyers," said Pena, adding that "there is significant opportunity for home builders to diminish negative connotations regarding time and stress as it relates to the purchase process."

Higher levels of customer satisfaction increase the opportunity for referrals, which are essential to customer acquisition; about 92% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family over all other forms of advertising, according to research and data company Nielson.

Results from the loanDepot survey are based on 1,000 nationwide customers who purchased a home over the past 18 months.

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