“What do you do for a living?” This simple question was posed to me recently by a new acquaintance I had met at a gathering of sales professionals. My response was “ I am a juggler.”


Think about our job as an originator. We must bring in new business. We must ensure that our current business is taken care of and closes smoothly. We must update ourselves on all current program guidelines, legal issues affecting our industry and financial/tax issues that are related to the housing market. Oh- and of course we must also be building new relationships, maintaining our existing ones, and scouting new opportunities and marketing methods.


Yes, this is a lot to do. Some of us are better sales people but weak on the other technical aspects. Others are great technicians but are lacking on the sales end. Regardless of which side you fall on you MUST be bringing in new business if you want to stay in business. I realize how simplistic that last statement is. However, there is an important question you should be asking yourself each and every day.


Ready? I’m only asking because I want to make sure this really sinks in. It’s that important. In fact, I would encourage you to write this one down and tape it to your monitor. WHAT DID I DO TODAY TO GENERATE NEW BUSINESS TODAY?

Yes- regardless of what’s happening in the market , your personal life, your business life or other issues you must always be marketing. Now I know what you are about to say…. “But I don’t have the time” HERE’S HOW I KNOW THAT YOU DO HAVE THE TIME!

Let’s pretend that you have just received a call from a past client. This is a couple that used you for their first home purchase. They have refinanced with you several times. They are so happy with you that they have sent you numerous referrals since they closed their loan. During the call they tell you that they have just inherited a large sum of money and want to finally purchase their Dream home. They put the home under contract at 2.5 million dollars and want to borrow 1.5 million from you. You already know that their credit is perfect and that their incomes will qualify them for this loan. They have NOT asked you about rates or points. You have been assured they will be using you for this transaction. So let me ask you an important question. WHAT WILL KEEP YOU FROM GOING TO THIS APPOINTMENT?

Now of course I know your answer was nothing short of death (heaven forbid) or illness would stop you from going to this 1.5 million dollar loan application. Not a loan blowing up at closing, not 3 messages you need to return, not that post on Facebook or Linked In you want to read. NOTHING WILL STOP YOU!

That’s the same way you must view your marketing initiatives. I constantly tell my coaching members and clients I consult with that they must schedule these appointments in their planners. At least once a week for at least 1 hour ( best if twice a week for 2 hours at a time) you must schedule an appointment with yourself to work ON your business.

We all spend time juggling and working IN our origination business. The true key to success is working ON our business as well.

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Brian Sacks – Top Originator


Brian Sacks is the President of Loan Officer Tips and Agents Chase You. He has taught thousands of loan officers over the past 30 years how to Close More Loans- Make More Money and Still Have Time To Enjoy Life. You can download his Free Report at

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What will you say when they ask this question?

The holidays are upon us and this is the time when you will reconnect with many people you haven’t seen since last year and some that you are just meeting for the first time.
They are bound to ask you “What do you do?” and how you answer this question will determine if the conversation turns out the way you want it to or if it leads you to just be further frustrated with yet another missed opportunity.

Do you hate rate shoppers? Our industry is more competitive than it has ever been. To compound this fact, consumers now have numerous ways to check rates and programs and also check you out on –line to see your reputation. It’s no different than anything we do ourselves when we are shopping. We all want to get the best deal and know that we are working with a legitimate person/company.
In fact, stop right now and see what is being said about you. Go to and type in your name and see what is being said. Then go do the same for your company. If there is nothing being said about you that is the same as having bad press. I’ll cover this whole topic more in a future article but let’s get back to our main point about rate shoppers, OK?

Why do people ask you what your rates are?

It pays to take a step back and discover why consumers ask this question to begin with. I call this the “head of lettuce” syndrome and loan officers that have this affliction are doomed to never fully realize their full earnings potential.
Let’s assume you are in the market for a head of lettuce. All lettuce costs pretty much the same since it’s a commodity. So if you see lettuce at one store for $0.89 and another for $0.99 why not buy at the lower price.
After all lettuce is lettuce.
This is the same way consumers view us. We are offering a commodity and they want to get it at the best price. Now I realize you are probably saying, “But our service is superior, or we can get it done faster, or I am a better originator.”

But the truth is that we all must provide great service and be competitive just to earn the chance for this conversation.

Consumers only ask about price because they don’t know what else to ask. This whole conversation is especially true now when you are at family gatherings and parties and the question of “How’s business” or “What do you do?” comes up.
Letting them know that you give good service or have been a Champion’s Club winner, or anything else about you or your company will not change their perception.

So how do you change it? Let’s think about what you can do to change this perception and once and for all stop the question that irritates all of us. To begin let’s look at our service industries.
There are accountants and then there are tax accountants and corporate accountants. There are attorneys and then there are divorce attorneys, litigators, corporate attorneys, patent law etc. In my area there is now an attorney who specializes in working with fathers who are going thru a divorce and protecting the father’s rights.
Of course there is also the medical field. There are general practitioners and then there are specialists in every area of the body.
There are specialties in the mortgage industry. While you may offer numerous programs you could consider specializing in just these types of programs. Before I list them please understand that this does not mean you can’t offer all types of loans. It just means that you should find an area to specialize in.  We can start with 203(k) rehab loans; first-time home buyer bond programs; reverse mortgages; super luxury jumbos; new construction loans; 100% financing for doctors and this list can go on and on.

My very own favorite niche is working with buyers who have had a bankruptcy or other credit challenge. There is currently the Federal Housing Administration’s Back to Work program that can help 7.3 million borrowers who had a bankruptcy, short sale or foreclosure during the melt down.

This of course is my very own favorite niche.

The following three sentences have been the key to my success and to the success of over 10,000 other originators and company owners that I have shared it with. Grab a pen and paper and write this one down.  Ready?

1. Pick a niche.

2. Become the expert.

3. Let everyone know about it!

Why this works? I realize that this all sounds counter intuitive but stay with me. This works because people go to experts to solve their problems. When you are doing a 70% loan-to-value deal with a borrower who has 10 years on the job, an 810 credit score and three years of payments left after closing – well they deserve low rates and the best terms. They will shop you until their fingers hurt from dialing.

But a buyer who has a challenge wants to work with an expert. It’s much less about shopping and much more about knowing you have the expertise and credibility to get them to closing. They rarely ask what your rate is but will sometimes want to know the terms just so they know they can afford it.
Think about a borrower who had a bankruptcy because of a layoff but who is now back on track. Think about a senior who can no longer afford their home but wants to stay. Think of a person purchasing an REO that is in the perfect location and meets all of their needs, including price, but simply can’t afford to make the repairs without a renovation loan.

The point here is to think of a niche. Understand that it doesn’t have to be unique to you or your company. You just want to become the expert in that one product or program and then let your entire market area know about it.

Here’s your template. When I am asked what I do, I will say, “I help buyers who have had a bankruptcy or other credit challenge get into a home with low down payment and attractive rates.” Notice I don’t say the best rates.

When someone hears this they never ask what the rate is. They only want to know that I am real and can do what I say I can.
To promote your new area of expertise you should:
1. Teach courses at your local Board of Realtors.
2. Be a resource for your local press.
3. Teach courses to home builder associations in your area.
4. Write a short Kindle book.
5. Do webinars for real estate agents and consumers.
6. Partner with referral sources. In my case I often work with bankruptcy attorneys that know my expertise and are confident I will help their clients.
Why I know you won’t do this, but I hope I am wrong.
Now I realize what I have just laid out for you is 100% counter to what you have been taught. But please realize that is exactly why this works so well. It’s counter intuitive. Most originators fear that picking a niche will force them to miss other opportunities but in truth that is completely wrong.
When you assist a client who has an issue they see you as mortgage originator. These clients will absolutely refer you because they appreciate your help and guidance.
When you are at parties or gatherings create your own unique selling position and expertise. Instead of saying, “I am a loan officer or mortgage expert, or mortgage planner,” try “I help___________ who ____________ ( problem) get into a home with ____________ and ___________( your solutions).”
Give it a try and share your success. I love to hear success stories.

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Brian Sacks – Top Originator


Brian Sacks is a nationally renowned mortgage expert who has career closings of over 5,924 transactions for over $1 billion. He has trained, consulted and coached tens of thousands of loan officers and company owners over the past 29 years on How to Close More Loans – Make More Money – And Still Have A Life. For more information go to

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2015 will NOT be like 2014 in terms of business and where it comes from and even the type of business you will be seeing. I am sharing this with you because I want you to be ahead of the curve. I think that’s why you are a subscriber to begin with right?
2015 will be the year that you will need to deal with more credit challenged buyers. The Boomerang Buyers will be out in full force. These are the group that “melted down” during the meltdown and are now anxious to be back in the market and buy again.

You better bone up on the guidelines and programs that assist these folks like the FHA Back to Work program and others. I am actually going after these folks and in 2015 will likely put together a course for you to do the same if you want to.
2015 will be a purchase year- I think even Rip Van Winkle has refinanced already.

But you will need to choose which way YOU want to generate your purchase business. Either you will be dependent on realtors or you will switch the tables and make them dependent on you. The second option is the way I have positioned my business.

Direct Mail to Apartments
– My own Radio Show
– Appearances regularly on TV
– Strategic partnerships with professionals ( not realtors)
– Campaigns for referrals
– Using Social Media and Other Techniques to be the “Obvious Expert”
– Teaching Courses in person and via webinars.
– My Book and promoting it in my area in print -radio and TV appearances
Are any of these in your plans?
I sure hope so-

If you want to “close more loans- make more and have a life” you MUST decide TODAY how you want your business to happen in 2015.

Will you continue begging – oops – I mean establishing Realtor relationships?
There’s no right or wrong-  Just know that YOU can decide !
Here’s to a happy -healthy and prosperous 2015

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Brian Sacks – Top Originator


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