Posted by MeridianLink | April 2, 2024

5 Reasons To Integrate Your Consumer & Mortgage Lending

The materials available in this article are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your own advisors with questions regarding the content herein. The opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the individual authors and may not reflect the opinions of MeridianLink, Inc.   

To thrive in today’s economy, financial institutions (FIs) must prioritize delivering personalized offers on the products and services that consumers need precisely when those services are needed. 

Unfortunately, many banks and credit unions house data about products, such as consumer and mortgage loans, in departmental silos, resulting in lost cross-sell opportunities. 

Operations such as these may also cause FIs to lose money and accountholders. When loan officers within each department are only interested in increasing the sales of their individual products rather than enabling the sale of multiple lending products across their institution, money gets left on the table. What’s more, this approach can even lead to vastly different consumer experiences within different loan types, creating the potential for confusion and frustration. 

Meeting Today’s Borrower Expectations and Needs Requires an Innovative Approach 

Although banks and credit unions are positioned to offer efficient loan products and services to consumers, they need an effective strategy to break down silos and reach borrowers where they are on their financial journey to truly compete in the current economic landscape. 

Millennial and Gen Z consumers, for example, are often first-time borrowers. As more accountholders within these generations look to purchase homes, lenders must be ready to provide top-notch digital and personalized experiences as well as educate them about other product offerings. 

Another example can be found within affordability challenges—while mortgage rates are decreasing, they remain higher than they have been in the recent past. Add to these higher mortgage rates home prices that remain stubbornly elevated, and borrowers are looking at tacking hundreds of dollars more on to their monthly budget.  

Between higher mortgage rates, fluctuating housing inventories, and consumers’ preferences for digital lending, lenders have their work cut out. Not only must they remove unnecessary barriers to borrowing in a difficult housing market, but borrowers are also looking for help to navigate these growing challenges. 

Rising costs due to inflation and today’s ever-changing economy are taking their toll on consumers’ pocketbooks as they deal with more debt, including credit card debt and student and auto loans. In fact, a recent Bankrate survey found that since the Federal Reserve began raising its key benchmark rate in March 2022, 5% of respondents stated that their mortgage applications were rejected based on insufficient credit scores, credit history, or income. 

Lenders must also account for the fact that many borrowers want the option to apply for loans anywhere at any time—and particularly on any device. According to the Maxwell 2022 Millennial & Gen Z Borrower Sentiment Report, 52% of borrowers apply for their mortgages online using PCs, laptops, or tablets, while 30% of Gen Z borrowers are more likely to apply for loans using smartphones or mobile apps.  

Forward-thinking lenders use this data alongside their own data to customize their products to borrowers’ needs, offering consumers the right products and services in a timely, convenient manner. This creates positive experiences and empowers accountholders to decide on additional banking products. 

Consumers are more than willing to give their institutions the financial information necessary to streamline the mortgage process. According to the Arizent Future of Mortgage Lending 2022 survey, seven out of 10 borrowers (72%) would agree to do so. That’s because the top pain point for 51% of borrowers applying for loans is collecting, submitting, and resubmitting personal information, which delays the process. 

Watch our on-demand webinar to learn more about the trends and innovative solutions helping institutions like yours meet borrower needs and drive better end-to-end experiences. 

5 Main Reasons To Integrate Your Consumer and Mortgage Lending Technology 

It’s no secret that consumers expect more from their digital interactions—the problem is that FIs can have a difficult time keeping up with these expectations. The Capgemini World Retail Banking Report 2024 found that even with the considerable shift toward digital channels, 59% of surveyed bank customers rated their mobile banking app experience “average,” indicating that online platforms still have significant room for improvement.  

To provide consumers with the best possible experiences, financial institutions must begin to consider the benefits of integrating consumer and mortgage lending platforms. Here are the main reasons why they should: 

Unify the Consumer Experience 

Without unified mortgage and consumer lending technology, it can be easy for information silos to form between the two departments, causing a disjointed experience for consumers and staff. An end-to-end, cloud-based digital lending solution brings these silos together to create better communication, additional cross-sell opportunities, and a better overall user experience. 

Create Better Application Visibility 

Streamline the lending process with easy access to all open applications. If your mortgage applicant has an existing application in progress in MeridianLink® Consumer, lending officers can see it in the apps-in-flight window within the MeridianLink® Mortgage system. 

Modernize Application Pre-Fill 

Save time and reduce errors when filling out new applications with the application pre-fill feature. Pre-fill enables mortgage loan officers to pull consumer profiles from the core to pre-fill new mortgage loan applications within MeridianLink Mortgage, delivering a swift and satisfying consumer experience.  

Optimize Consumer Debt 

One innovative way that FIs can go beyond the initial closing is by enhancing relationships with their accountholders using the MeridianLink® patented debt optimization feature. This feature reviews the borrower’s outstanding loans and then scans and recommends the best rates on auto and personal loans. This may increase the chances of a borrower being approved for a better home loan, save them money, and increase their loyalty—all of which boosts a financial institution’s revenue. 

Maximize Post-Closing Cross-Sell Opportunities 

The consumer experience shouldn’t stop with simply meeting a borrower’s initial request. Your system and processes should work to cross-sell and cross-qualify consumers to improve their financial well-being and relationship with your financial institution.   

The MeridianLink® One platform, including the MeridianLink Consumer and MeridianLink Mortgage loan origination systems, can help FIs boost cross-sell opportunities with ease by reducing data silos to drive better consumer experiences. And by allowing for a more holistic view of your data, MeridianLink One can also simplify end-to-end digital lending and account opening processes with smoother communications and workflows that translate to more valuable, satisfying consumer interactions. 

MeridianLink Consumer, the industry’s leading loan origination system, provides banks and credit unions with a full loan product suite. As a single loan origination system, MeridianLink Consumer consolidates and streamlines applications from all channels, applying the same rules and processes to guarantee a smooth process for bank and credit union employees and a world-class consumer experience for members and customers. 

MeridianLink Mortgage is a web-based loan origination software that benefits financial institutions because it’s easy to implement and use, and it offers best-in-class support at every step along the way. This end-to-end, configurable solution allows lenders to deliver loans quickly and accurately from application to approval and provides a better borrower experience.​ 

Watch the on-demand webinar to gain insights into the trends and innovative solutions helping institutions meet borrower needs while empowering staff to deliver better overall experiences. 

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