Forecast is Right: It's Time to Beef Up Those Mortgage Programs

It was great to see many credit union leaders in agreement that the rebounding economy and housing market will bring opportunities to credit unions in the area of mortgage lending (various articles in CU Journal's June 3, 2013, Special Report on the 2013 Second Half Forecast).

Jeff Chesky from Insuritas summarized it up well: "The refinance boom has run its course and purchase mortgage activity is picking up pace within the overall economic recovery."

CU Realty Services, along with Callahan & Associates, the Mortgage Bankers Association and research by Forbes, have reiterated this trend, suggesting financial institutions should reposition their mortgage marketing strategies to take advantage of these changes. It's clearly time to actively promote home mortgages.

A primary tactic credit unions can't overlook is their online presence. Some 90% of consumers use the Internet to research homes for sale, neighborhoods and pricing, as well as to compare mortgage loan rates and terms. In fact, in 2012, 52% of all home buyers went to the Internet as a first step.

To be a player in this space, credit unions should focus on promoting their purchase mortgage programs online and even beef up their services in real estate.

Tina Powers

Chief Operating Officer

CU Realty Services, Phoenix