INMAN NEWS: Down Payment Resource bolsters agent lead gen tool

Merging Down Payment Connect with Facebook ads can give agents an edge with first-time homebuyers

BY ANDREA BRAMBILA | INMAN Staff Writer

Down Payment Resource rebrands and bolsters tool that brings in homebuyer leads for agents.

About a year and a half ago, real estate agent Ronnie Burnham was looking for a tool that would both help him reach more homebuyers and give him an edge over other agents in his market.

Ironically, he found that tool being offered at no additional cost to all the members of his MLS, the Central Virginia Regional Multiple Listing Service (CVR MLS).

The tool, Down Payment Connect, was offered by Down Payment Resource, a provider of down payment assistance information. Burnham was intrigued by the offering and found that not many agents in his MLS were using it, so he signed up for a training webinar.

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Agents: Serve first-time homebuyers well and everyone wins

Kris Rosser Schmitt, Illinois based agent and managing broker at the Barbier Agency, has fueled her business with first-time homebuyers since 2001. Why?

“As agents, we are psychologists who sell houses. And first-time homebuyers are your best referral strategy…if you do it right. You are going to hand hold and educate more, but the ROI [return on investment] is huge. When you build trust with first-time homebuyers, you’ll gain stronger, more motivated leads,” said Kris.

Kris puts the focus on serving her first-time buyers well and they do the rest. Kris said her successful first-time homebuyers will give her 5 -10 leads in the next 12 to 18 months. They actively share all the details about their home buying experience with their friends and family.

“We [agents] are relationship based people. That’s how we sell,” said Kris. keep reading

Agents and Lenders, Can you explain down payments to clients?

A comprehensive look at programs for buyers

by: Rob Chrane, CEO, Down Payment Resource

  • Assistance programs may offer grants, funds for closing costs, a second loan, a low-interest mortgage with no PMI or a tax credit.
  • Funding comes from federal sources, bond-funded programs, state-sponsored housing and TBA (to-be-announced) and capital markets funding.
  • Without clear guidance, some lenders may decide to pull back on using these programs for fear of an audit.
  • Explore local options and talk to lenders to fully understand the loans they originate.

In a market where first-time homebuyers consistently cite the down payment as their no. 1 challenge, there’s a battle brewing behind the scenes — a fight to preserve the wide range of down payment programs that propel scores of new buyers into homeownership.

More real estate professionals are trying to reach first-time homebuyers — it’s the future of the market, after all. Many of these buyers may qualify for down payment help, helping boost their buying power and getting them into a home sooner.

Even if you already use homeownership programs, you probably find yourself asking: Where does the money come from? How do the programs work? Can my clients benefit? keep reading