Request a Demo

The Importance of Continued Education for Mortgage Brokers

Mortgage brokers play a crucial role in helping borrowers secure financing from private lenders in an ever-changing industry. To excel in this field, mortgage brokers need to stay informed and up to date with the latest trends, technology, and regulations. In this article, we will explore the benefits of continued education for mortgage brokers and provide tips on how brokers can engage in ongoing education and development.

The Benefits of Continued Education

Continuing education for mortgage brokers offers many benefits, including staying up to date with changing laws and regulations, improving knowledge and skills in the private lending industry, enhancing professionalism and credibility, and increasing marketability and competitiveness. Keeping education at the forefront demonstrates a commitment to professionalism and a willingness to learn and grow in the industry. This commitment can set mortgage brokers apart from their competitors and increase their reputation in the industry. By setting yourself up as a knowledge source on all things related to the real estate industry, lending, and more, you will be a preferred broker in the space for your clients.

Tips on Continued Education in the Private Lending Space

Mortgage brokers can pursue continued education through various methods, including attending industry events such as conferences, networking events, and seminars. These are great avenues for connecting with professionals in the space to not only grow your network but many of these events also host speaking and panel-style sessions to help educate folks on important matters in the industry, tips and tricks, and standard regulations. These events are imperative in keeping mortgage brokers knowledgeable and connected to the pulse of the industry. In addition to industry events, participating in webinars and online courses, reading industry publications and blogs, seeking out mentorship opportunities, and obtaining professional certifications and designations are great resources for continued education.

It is also important for mortgage brokers to stay up to date on the latest technology trends, which are rapidly changing the private lending industry. By staying informed about the latest trends, mortgage brokers can improve their operations and provide better service to their clients. Plus, many of the technology resources available have been created to help streamline the brokering process, so by staying up to date on these solutions, you will stay ahead of the curve from the competition.

The Importance of Staying Informed on Private Lending Trends

Staying informed about current trends in the private lending industry allows mortgage brokers to offer the best possible products and solutions to their clients, meet changing market demands, and adapt to new challenges. Economic, social, and technological factors can have a significant impact on the private lending industry, and mortgage brokers should stay informed and aware of the latest developments to remain competitive. Practicing continued education can help mortgage brokers incorporate innovative strategies and approaches with their private lending offerings, enabling brokers to differentiate themselves from competitors and better serve their clients.

Bridge Loan Network’s Loan Management System (LMS)

Bridge Loan Network offers a state-of-the-art Loan Management System (LMS) that enables mortgage brokers to streamline their operations, improve efficiency, and better serve their clients. The LMS is a web-based platform that allows mortgage brokers to manage loans, view real-time loan statuses, and communicate with borrowers and private lenders. The LMS also includes features such as document management, task management, and reporting. By using the LMS, mortgage brokers can save time and effort in managing their pipelines, which allows brokers to focus on building relationships with their clients and growing their businesses.

Overall, pursuing continued education is essential for mortgage brokers in the industry. It enables brokers to stay informed and up to date with the latest trends and regulations, improve brokers’ knowledge and skillsets, enhance professionalism and credibility, and increase marketability and competitiveness. Staying informed about the latest technology trends and incorporating innovative strategies and approaches can also set mortgage brokers apart from their competitors. Bridge Loan Network’s Loan Management System (LMS) offers valuable tools and resources to help mortgage brokers streamline their operations and better serve their clients. By pursuing continued education and using the latest tools and technology, mortgage brokers can stay ahead of the curve in the ever-changing private lending industry.

Jacob Therrien Joins the American Association of Private Lender’s Ethics Committee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Jacob Therrien Joins the American Association of Private Lender’s Ethics Committee

Vernon, CT (April 21, 2023) – Bridge Loan Network is pleased to announce the appointment of our Business Development Specialist, Jacob Therrien, to the Ethics Committee with The American Association of Private Lenders (AAPL). The American Association of Private Lenders is the national organization that represents the private lending industry, providing education and networking opportunities for its members.

The Ethics Committee is responsible for continuously evaluating AAPL’s Code of Ethics to ensure that it is clear, complete, and relevant to the private lending industry. The committee also provides guidance to AAPL’s members on best practices and writes articles and presents webinars to articulate a framework of practice.

“I am honored to join the Ethics Committee with The American Association of Private Lenders,” said Jacob Therrien. “My goal is to provide valuable insights for the Ethics Committee using my knowledge and experience working with Brokers and Lenders from a technology perspective. This is something I know the Committee plans to leverage, as data protection and security become more of a hot topic in our industry.”

AAPL’s Code of Ethics is a living, breathing document that must change with the times to protect the viability of the industry. The Ethics Committee is charged with ensuring that the Code does not unnecessarily burden members with impractical expectations. Additionally, the committee treats all potential Code of Ethics violations with the utmost care, consideration, and gravity, while also shielding members from parties who seek to use AAPL’s investigation process to harass or express dissatisfaction in an otherwise ethical outcome.

“For Bridge Loan Network, being part of the AAPL Ethics Committee is about being an advocate for conducting business in the most ethical way possible,” said Jacob Therrien, when speaking on what being appointed to the Ethics Committee means for our company, Bridge Loan Network. “We are proud to represent all that AAPL and its members stand for. The company, through our involvement and efforts on the Committee will speak on ethical dilemmas faced in our industry, create guidance, and best practices, and bring forward ideas on how to better our industry for the future.”

“For myself, being a member of the Ethics Committee is one the biggest accomplishments in my career thus far,” said Jacob Therrien, when speaking on what being appointed to the Ethics Committee means personally. “To now have a hand in this Committee directly by bringing my personal experiences and ideas is something I am extremely proud of.”

AAPL is the only national private lending organization with a publicly accessible complaint process. The organization’s Code of Ethics is a critical component of its mission to promote and maintain the highest ethical standards in the private lending industry.

“I understand the importance of ethical behavior in the private lending industry, and I look forward to working with my fellow committee members to ensure that our Code of Ethics is effective in maintaining the highest standards of professionalism,” said Jacob Therrien.

About AAPL

The American Association of Private Lender (AAPL) is the national organization that represents the private lending industry, providing education and networking opportunities for its members. The organization’s mission is to promote and maintain the highest ethical standards in the private lending industry. AAPL has a membership of over 4,000 private lenders and service providers nationwide.

About Bridge Loan Network

Bridge Loan Network is a leading loan origination software provider for private lenders. Bridge Loan Network is dedicated to providing the private lending industry with the technology and support necessary to streamline the loan origination process. The platform offers a suite of tools that enable private lenders to manage their loan pipeline, communicate with borrowers and brokers, and process loans more efficiently.

Contact:

Name: Erica Sikoski

Title: Marketing Manager

Phone: (860) 432-4895

Email: Erica@bridgeloannetwork.com

International Women’s Day – Women Supporting Women

International Women’s Day (IWD), which is observed on March 8th each year, celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women.

The importance of International Women’s Day lies in its focus on advancing gender equality and women’s rights. This day is a reminder that women have made significant contributions to society throughout history, often in the face of significant obstacles and discrimination.

IWD also highlights the work that still needs to be done to achieve gender equality. This includes addressing issues such as the gender pay gap and the lack of representation of women in leadership roles.

As we celebrate this day, we also want to highlight the importance of building support systems and supporting women in their careers. As Sallie Krawcheck, CEO and Co-Founder of Ellevest, has said, “Surround yourself with people who inspire you, challenge you, and support you. Your network is your net worth, so invest in building strong relationships.”

Below are just a few ways women (and others) can support women in the workplace.

Mentorship: One of the most effective ways to support other women and help guide them is to be a mentor or build a mentorship program. By sharing your knowledge and experience, offering guidance, and providing opportunities for growth and development, we can help the next generation of women leader’s flourish.

Networking: Build a strong network of women in your industry or field. Attend events, listen to women speakers, connect on LinkedIn, and join professional organizations. This network can provide support, advice, and new opportunities when needed.

Advocacy: Speak up for other women in the workplace. If you see someone being overlooked or undervalued, advocate for them. Use your voice to call attention to gender bias or discrimination. Our voices are louder when we come together on an issue, and even more important, when we listen and believe one another, we can achieve more together.

Celebrate Each Other’s Successes: Celebrate the successes of other women in your workplace and industry. Recognize their achievements, share their accomplishments, and offer your support and congratulations. When we lift each other up, we also pave the path for the next generation to do the same.

There has been some movement in closing the gender gap as more organizations are prioritizing diversity and inclusion and providing more resources for women in our industry, such as mentorship programs and networking groups, which can help to support career and personal development.

In general, International Women’s Day serves as a significant reminder of both the progress made toward gender equality and the work still remaining. While we honor the accomplishments of women throughout history, we must also keep creating networks of support and speaking up for one another in the workplace. We can help pave the path for the next generation of female leaders to succeed by emphasizing mentorship programs, networking opportunities, and sharing in each other’s triumphs. Let’s keep striving for a time when all women are given the chance to prosper and realize their full potential. As we look ahead to the future, let us remember the words of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, “Women belong in all places where decisions are being made.”

For more information on International Women’s Day, head to their website, https://www.internationalwomensday.com/.

What to Look for in a Loan Origination System (LOS)

Making any changes to your process by implementing new software is a major decision for both Private Lenders and Mortgage Brokers. Loan Origination Systems (LOS) are essential tools for real estate professionals to streamline their operations and manage the loan application process efficiently. With the growing competition in the market, having an advanced Loan Origination System that works alongside your lending process is a crucial aspect of becoming successful in the real estate lending space.

In this blog post, we provide tips and insights for beginners who are looking to implement a new Loan Origination System.

User-Friendly Interface

An intuitive user interface with a straightforward navigation system is crucial for an LOS. It ensures that the members of your team can use the system easily and access the information they need without any hassle. LOS platforms with too many bells and whistles can become overwhelming for your team members and create unnecessary and tedious workflow hassles. It’s important to look for an LOS that will work alongside the lending process you and your team have already established and allow for easy access to your information in the system.

API for Data Exchanges

Users can greatly benefit from using an Application Programming Interface (API). This technology can bring about improved efficiency, higher data quality, enhanced compliance, and better user experiences. With API, users can easily connect to third-party services, allowing for seamless integration with other applications and programs to manage workflows. This includes integrating with service providers such as Appraisal Management Companies, Credit and Background Reporting, CRM Databases, and more. Allowing for easy data flow removes the email chains back and forth to transfer important loan information.

Data Security

Data security is a critical concern in the lending industry, and an LOS must have robust security measures in place to ensure that sensitive data is protected. It’s also important to understand who “owns” the data that you are inputting into a LOS. Does it belong to you, or the software provider? This information along with back-end security for client information and property data is vital for data protection. 

Training & Technical Support

An LOS provider with a reliable technical support team can help clients resolve any issues and ensure that the system is running smoothly. It’s important that when you implement a new software solution the onboarding and training for usage of the software do not hinder your ability to still do business. LOS platforms that require weeks of training can be cumbersome when trying to work through your book of business. Additionally, understand how LOS platforms provide tech support for you and your team once you are up and running, and how quickly they can help resolve any tech issues that may arise. 

Cloud-Based Platform

A cloud-based loan origination system offers several benefits, including accessibility from any location, automatic software updates, and reduced IT costs. It also allows clients to scale their operations and manage their loan portfolios efficiently. This has become incredibly important in the remote and hybrid work models many businesses are implementing for their teams. The ability to be able to work in the same loan file from different locations allows for a smoother lending process.

Document Management

An efficient document management system is crucial for real estate lending as it allows folks to store, access, and manage loan-related documents easily. A system with document checklists, indexing, and retrieval capabilities can significantly improve the efficiency of the loan origination process.

In conclusion, a Loan Origination System is a critical tool for real estate professionals to streamline and simplify their operations and manage the loan application process efficiently. To ensure that you select the best LOS for your business, consider these tips and ensure that the system meets your specific requirements and has the features you need, and be sure to check out more information on the features of our Bridge Loan Network Loan Origination System. Contact our team today for a quick demo of the features of our software, and how it can help in your lending process.

5 Essential Skills for Closing Deals as a Broker

As a broker, your main goals are to successfully close deals and create lasting relationships with industry partners and clients. But closing deals can be a challenging process, especially if you’re just getting started in the industry.

There are a few skills and characteristics that set apart the brokers who are champions and those that struggle to get deals across the finish line and in this blog post, I’ll outline five essential skills for closing deals efficiently as a broker.

1. Setting Expectations Up Front with the Borrower

One of the keys to closing a deal is setting the right expectations with your borrower from the start. It’s important to be upfront about the fact that there are no guarantees in getting a deal done and to anticipate any potential issues that could arise during the process.

By setting realistic expectations, you can help your borrower understand that funding may not be exactly what they anticipated due to the various details that can come up in the approval process. As the saying goes, “It’s always better to under-promise and over-deliver.”

To set the right expectations, it’s important to thoroughly understand your borrower’s investing goals and the challenges they may face. Before submitting deals to a lender, be sure to interview your borrowers and ask pointed questions to get a better understanding of their needs. By preparing in advance and being proactive, you can set expectations that will strengthen your relationship with your borrower and show that you’re the financing expert.

2. Don’t Withhold Information from the Lender

One of the biggest mistakes brokers can make is withholding information from their lenders in the hopes that negative issues won’t be discovered. This not only creates issues for the borrower but can also damage the long-term relationship between the broker and the lender.

It’s important to understand that lenders are on your side and want to fund deals. It’s always best to communicate openly and be direct with your lender so that you can work together to overcome any challenges before they become roadblocks. Don’t be afraid to bring up any skeletons that may come up in the due diligence process, as it’s better to address them upfront rather than risk losing the deal, or the relationship.

3. Know Your Lenders’ Requirements

Brokers who are successful at closing deals are often those who have a thorough understanding of the requirements of their chosen lenders. Take the time to study all the requirements thoroughly, and if there are any items you don’t understand, don’t hesitate to ask your loan officer for clarification.

Knowing the requirements of your lenders will help you quickly determine which one is the best fit for a particular deal your client has brought forward. This can be especially important in the private lending space, where deals need to move quickly, or risk being lost to the competition. By knowing which lender is a good fit for each circumstance, you can get deals done more efficiently.

4. Create a Sense of Urgency

Creating a sense of urgency can be an effective way to move deals along more quickly. By letting your borrowers know that you are working hard to get the deal done and that time is of the essence, you can help build trust and establish a sense of urgency that will help move the deal forward.

It’s also important to keep your borrowers informed throughout the process and to be responsive to their questions and concerns by being proactive and transparent.

5. Stay Organized

The final, and most important, key to closing deals quickly is by being organized. You could be the most professional broker, but if you can’t find the files needed to submit or have all the files for different clients and lenders mashed together, then it will be impossible to do your job effectively.

Lenders appreciate a full package and organized submission, as it shows that you understand what needs to be submitted and that you’re reliable. Don’t simply forward an email from the borrower to your lender without going through and understanding what has been received and if it is the correct information needed. An organized submission can help speed up the process and get you to close the deal more quickly.

Bridge Loan Network

As the leading software in the private lending space, Bridge Loan Network’s Software is designed specifically for real estate brokers and lenders alike. Brokers utilize Bridge Loan Network’s Loan Management System to provide clients with a secure and centralized location to submit their applications and loan files for the Broker to review. With Bridge Loan Network’s software, the loan process is simplified and organized every step of the way

Overall, closing deals as a broker requires a combination of skills and characteristics, including setting expectations up front, being transparent with lenders, understanding lender requirements, creating a sense of urgency, and staying organized. By mastering these skills and utilizing Bridge Loan Network’s Loan Management System, you can increase your chances of successfully closing deals and bringing in revenue for your brokerage. Connect with our team to learn more!

Tips for Navigating a Networking Event

In the real estate industry, whether you are a private lender, broker, or investor, networking is a key factor of growing your business.

Networking Event

Conferences, local meetups, and networking events are everywhere in our industry and will help you stay ahead of the curve if you are a contributing member. Plus, they are an investment in yourself and your company, and you’ll want to make the most of the time spent away from the office.

And as you’ve undoubtedly gathered, networking entails a lot more than just showing up, grabbing some free food, and exchanging business cards. It’s about connecting with people, sharing about yourself and what you do, and collecting valuable contacts and knowledge to grow professionally.

To make the most of it, all it takes is a little preparation and practice. Here’s what you need to know before you grab your business cards and head to your next industry event.

BEFORE

Set Reasonable Expectation

When preparing for a networking event, establish goals for your time there. Is your goal to find a specific service in which your company has a need for? A goal to meet five new people in the industry? Or are you hoping to connect with one particular person or company? By setting specific goals you can better prepare yourself and use your time wisely at the event.

Dress to Impress

Research the event you’re going to attend, the location, and the general theme of the event. First impressions matter, and this way you can set yourself up for success in putting your best foot forward. Think of it as a more informal interview, you’ll want to dress the part.

Bring Business Cards

This one seems obvious, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say they’ve forgotten their cards at home, or that they just gave their last card away. Bring more cards than you think you may need and keep them on hand for the entirety of the event. One sided business card exchanges can leave a bad taste in folks’ mouths and could hinder their desire to follow-up with you in the future.

DURING

Focus on Making a Connection, Not a Sale

The overall goal for any event is to grow your network and allow for follow up with the appropriate folks after the event. With this in mind, don’t focus so much on making the sale right on the spot, but on making a connection. Show folks that you’re interested in more than just your opportunities. The best questions you can ask are ones that can’t be answered by just “yes” or “no” and allow for more fluid conversation.

Take Notes

After you ask for someone’s card, take notes on the card after they walk away or immediately after the event. This will help you to be more specific with your follow-up efforts. Even if you can’t write on their card, utilize your Notes app on your phone to highlight key topics and important information from your conversation. This can be as simple as the product or service they are looking for more information on, to favorite local food spots you discussed, to times that work best for follow-up.

Don’t Spam People with Cards

The closest thing to you throwing all your business cards away in the trash is by just passing them out to everyone you meet without having the actual conversations. If you haven’t built enough rapport with someone to encourage them to ask for your card, and vice versa, don’t just offer one because you think it’s what you’re supposed to do.

AFTER  

Follow-up

Making the connection is just the first step. To cultivate the relationship, you need to follow up with the folks you networked with. Make sure to personalize each phone call or email, letting each person know you enjoyed meeting them and mention something specific you talked about. A quick tip: One of the fastest ways to stop a connection in its tracks is to send everyone the same generic follow-up or LinkedIn connection request.

One of the best tools you can utilize in your career is networking, and you can make the most of it by preparing in advance, acting professionally during the event, and being proactive with your follow-up. Beyond that, simply try to enjoy yourself!

Geraci’s Innovate 2022 Conference 

Newport Beach

Hosted on April 11-12, 2022 at the Balboa Bay Resort.

Bridge Loan Network is exhibiting at Geraci Media’s upcoming Innovate Conference hosted in Newport Beach, California. The agenda for the conference is filled with compelling speaking sessions and panel discussions from industry leaders.

The Innovate Conference prides itself on connecting lenders, brokers, investors, and service providers through ample networking opportunities and educational sessions to grow our businesses in the private lending space. Bridge Loan Network will be alongside the exhibitor hall showcasing our Loan Origination System for Private Lenders who are looking to streamline and organize their lending process.

“We’re looking forward to our first Innovate Conference in California,” says Marketing Manager, Erica Sikoski. “Connecting with industry leaders, and networking with new folks in private lending helps our industry grow.”

Be sure to visit the Bridge Loan Network booth at the show.

For more details on the Innovate Conference, click here.

54th Private Lending Pitbull Conference

Bridge Loan Network will be exhibiting at the upcoming 54th National Private Lending Pitbull Conference in Key Biscayne, Florida. The Pitbull Conference which is taking place March 26th through March 28th at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel is the oldest and largest organization of its kind in the country.  Their mission for the three-day event is to educate brokers, lenders, and investors on the emerging opportunities that exist in the private money lending space.

The agenda for the Pitbull Conference is filled with compelling sessions from private money industry experts.  In addition to the mix of educational sessions, there will be numerous opportunities for networking with other attendees and the awesome exhibitors, such as Bridge Loan Network, including at the Golf Tournament.

Be sure to visit the Bridge Loan Network team at the show.

For more details on the Pitbull Conference, click here.

Meet the Team “Virtually”: Kristina Pfau

Let’s meet our Broker Account Manager, Kristina Pfau who joined our Bridge Loan Network team in 2021.  Kristina is responsible for curating and maintaining relationships with mortgage brokers who would benefit from utilizing Bridge Loan Network’s suite of software offerings.

Q:  How do you prefer to start your day?

A:  Going for a 2-mile run with my puppy!

Q:  What’s your go-to productivity trick?

A:  Coffee!

Q:  How did you start working for Bridge Loan Network?

A:  Someone suggested I apply for the Broker Account Manager position and clearly, they were right!

Q:  What’s a work-related accomplishment that you’re really proud of?

A: I’m definitely proud of myself in regards to how much I’ve learned and accomplished for only being in the real estate world for a little over a year now.

Q:  What was your first job?

A: Six Flags New England

Q:  Are you an early bird, or night owl?

A: Early Bird

Q:  If you could choose a superpower, what would it be?

A: Teleporting

Q:  If you could only have three apps on your smartphone, which would you pick?

A: Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat

Q:  What’s one song you have completely memorized? 

A: Party in the USA – Miley Cyrus

Q:  What’s your most used emoji?

A: The smiley face with hearts around it

Q:  When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A: I wanted to be a dance teacher

AAPL’s 12th Annual Conference

Bridge Loan Network is excited to be back exhibiting at the upcoming American Association of Private Lenders’ (AAPL) 12th Annual Conference. The AAPL Conference which is taking place November 14th through 16th in Las Vegas is the leading real estate lending conference connecting private lenders, brokers, crowd funders, and service providers.

The agenda for the conference is filled with captivating speaking sessions and ample networking opportunities, including a speed networking session, VIP Reception and an Official After-Party.

“The quality of conversations with exhibitors and attendees at the AAPL Conference is what makes this event stand out,” says Business Development Specialist, Jacob Therrien.  “This event gives us an opportunity to meet new lenders in the industry, as well as connect and strengthen long-standing relationships with other industry professionals.”

Stop by our Bridge Loan Network booth at the conference to learn how our Loan Origination Software can help take your Private Lending business to the next level!

For more details on the AAPL Annual Conference, click here.