Sunday, August 19, 2012

Southeast Mortgage Pays it Forward with a Georgia Industry Offer to MLOs

The Mortgage Industry has rewarded me and my teammates over the many years we have been engaged in this important business.  I believe good fortune should be paid forward.  The most effective way the Southeast Mortgage Team can give back to our industry is to help educate others and improve their future prospects.  Enhancing skill sets, fundamentals, and certifications will open doors for personal development and add to the stability of our industry.  Our pay it forward is described below.


The 2009 financial crisis marks the beginning of my third recession.  I learned valuable tactics during the past two; however, this one was long and destructive.  The skills and knowledge from the past two recessions provided an effective map for Southeast Mortgage to navigate the treacherous waters.  Recessions are basically a natural cleaning process for the economy which ensures the most efficient and strong emerge.  Sometimes you have to clear some trees to build a bigger house.

Technically the past recession followed the same indicators and patterns of previous deflationary cycles.  One difference between this recession and others for the Mortgage Industry is the opportunity created for the Mortgage Loan Originator, MLO.  MLOs, left in this industry going forward now have the ability to create value in themselves versus the company they work for.

Two types of MLOs in Georgia:

Registered Mortgage Originators
- work for depository banks and who are not required to be Licensed per the SAFE Act


·        submit fingerprints for a state and federal background check

·        submit their personal history and experience (MU-4 form)

·        will have a unique identifier number

Licensed Mortgage Originators, per the SAFE Act


·        submit fingerprints for a state and federal background check

·        submit personal history and experience (MU-4 form)

·        will have a unique identifier number

·        demonstrate financial responsibility (LO's will have their credit checked)

·        take 20 hours of approved pre-licensing education

·        pass the state and national mortgage exam by 75% or better

·        will take 8 hours of continuing education annually

·        may never have had a license revoked

MLO opportunity changed in 2008:

Many MLOs did not like the National and State Licensing requirement set forth by our government; however, I see it as a differentiating certification and an opportunity.  If you obtain the licenses your career becomes portable in an industry that skill and service dictates your growth. 

Personally, I think all MLO's that made it through the past 4 years deserves a hand.

Now is the time to align with consumer and Real Estate Agent needs that will maximize the next 3.5  - 4 years left in this post recessionary recovery and be prepared for the next recession.

1.     Licensed MLOs earn 40 - 100 basis points more than Registered Mortgage Originators working under a bank or savings bank registration.  Profitability is similar among the various forms of mortgage companies.  That is a steep price not to invest in certifications that build your career. Invest 30 days in your career to get the certifications the government felt was important enough to put into law.

2.     With reduced competition, barriers to entry, and enhanced regulation, now is the time to build your referral networks with great service.  Your referral base should be 30% life cycle referrals, 30% Purchase Money, and 40% core repeat clients.  Fish for yourself and reduce dependency and uncertainty.

3.     Pipelines that grow faster than your closed loan volume is a red flag....  You should close 70% of your pipeline monthly.  Growing pipelines does not help clients, Agent's, or your family's security.

4.     Purchase and Refinance are the same just a different client need.  Both should be treated equally because both are important at that point in time to your client.

5.     Ultimately service matters!  Personalities, good looks, and apologies only go so far.  Consumers want great service and Agent's need to close transactions.

6.     A Licensed MLO has a portable career.  Employers of Licensed MLOs understand you have to have great service to earn your MLOs tenure.  Mutual respect is the building block of great organizations.

Consumers want Licensed Mortgage Originator that has met the minimal standards set by the US government.  If we had the current regulatory environment during the 2001 - 2005 cycle, I bet the recession would have been the usual 6 month bump in the road.

The Georgia Real Estate Industry is about 7 months into the current recovery cycle.  Registered MLOs need to invest in themselves by obtaining certifications, create referral chains that build independent business, and maximize the current cycle opportunity with fast closes and Licensed MLO wages.

The Mortgage Industry has been generous to me and my teammates.  We have always looked for the best path given the industry's challenges and opportunity.  The path we always choose is not determined based on the size of the easy button, but what will improve the fundamentals of our competency and make us stronger and better positioned in the mortgage market.  

Southeast Mortgage wants to pay it forward with a NO Obligation and NO Cost offer to qualified Georgia Registered MLOs.  Southeast Mortgage will provide the training materials, classes, and administrative support to obtain a Georgia State Mortgage Origination License and National License.  The process will remain confidential and SEM will execute a confidentiality agreement to that effect. 

** Registered MLOs must verify an average 1 million+ in conforming mortgage production per month for the past 12 months. 

Simply contact Kathy Gyselinck, Executive Vice President, at and begin your 30 day path to a portable career with you in the forefront.  Kathy has a 100% PASS RATE for Registered MLO's following her proven process.

Fresh out of The Georgia Institute of Technology and on my first day at my new bank job at First Atlanta Bank, a wise man told me "the secret to success is never drive in traffic and never get on a crowded elevator".  He was right.  Thank you Roger!

Cal Haupt
Chief Executive Officer
Southeast Mortgage


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