Maintaining a Well Prepared Arsenal
Loan brokerage is a profession that can yield high returns on your start-up investments and create a large annual income. You’ve gone through all the appropriate training and any certification you might need, and you’ve read all the literature on how to find success as a commercial loan broker. You probably feel like you’ve got all your bases covered. Have you thought about what other materials you might need in order to run your operation smoothly and successfully? Consider these items to maintain a well-prepared arsenal.
First, make sure you speak extensively with your lenders to be sure you understand what materials and information they require. Depending on the type of loan or the individual preferences of the lender, requirements are sure to differ. Keep a current directory of all your lenders and the financial materials they demand for lending to serve as a quick reference. It is a good idea to check in regularly with lenders to see if they have changed their policies or requirements.
Likewise, understand the legal paperwork that goes along with commercial loan brokerage. Not having the right paperwork completed will undoubtedly hamper the progression of the loan. Scrutiny in this field is fierce, and paperwork mistakes can be costly in many ways. Regardless of whether it’s legal paperwork or a financial requirement from the lender, if you are unsure if it is needed, ask for it anyway. It’s better to have too much information than to delay the lending process by having to back-track.
Loan brokerage is incredibly reliant on email correspondence. It is an easy way to transmit documents and other information. Due to the large amount of emails received every day, an email system that allows for easy archival and categorization is crucial. You will want to organize your emails so you can quickly find information based on lender, borrower, and type of loan. Create labels and categories for your emails that are simple and easy to remember.
Try to utilize an email service that allows you create reminders and place things into your schedule directly from your email. Keeping dates and running on-time is essential in this fast-pace industry. Despite being so email-intensive, you will frequently encounter conference calls, and possibly face to face meetings. Stay on track through the use of a scheduling system that creates automatic reminders for you. Look for email systems that have large memory capacity in emailing (for sending large documents) and immense memory space for archiving past emails.
Loan brokerage doesn’t require a lot of start-up funds, office space, or equipment, but there are a few things that all good commercial loan brokers have in common. First, if you don’t already have one, invest in a smartphone (like a Blackberry or iPhone). You will want to be able to read and respond to emails and view documents when you are out in the field. Download apps that allow you to manage your business information and make the most of your time away from your office. A laptop computer is also good for this.
Consider using an all-in-one printer with fax and scanning capabilities. You can keep all of your documents electronic and will be able to send information quickly. Keep a large-capacity flash drive or portable hard drive handy to back-up electronic information and transmit data between multiple computers. There are online services that allow you to back-up your information, but an external hard drive will serve the same purpose.
Creating a well-prepared arsenal will allow you to easily send information to lenders and borrowers and will make your commercial loan brokerage more efficient. A few simple technological investments and a good understanding of different paperwork and financial requirements will help achieve this. While the recommendations here are great baseline necessities, it is important to use the equipment and information that best fits your situation and needs.