Realtors Have Most Influence on Homebuyers’ Mortgage Shopping

This summer, mortgage giant Fannie Mae surveyed consumers on mortgage shopping habits, and how homebuyers pick a lender is the most interesting finding.

With all the talk of consumers starting their research online, you’d think that’s how people are selecting their lender.

But it turns out realtors are the most influential source for people researching and selecting a lender.

Specifically Fannie Mae asked this question:

When you were researching and receiving advice about selecting a lender for your current mortgage, which of the following sources of information were most influential? Please select up to 2.

As you can see from the chart below, 41% of recent homebuyers said realtors were most influential for helping select a mortgage lender.

Fannie Mae Realtor Most Influential In Selecting Mortgage Lender The Basis Point

And the age distribution on this result was pretty consistent.

Of the 41% of recent homebuyers who said realtors were most influential in selecting a mortgage lender:

– 38% were 18-34,

– 26% were 35-44, and

– 36% were 45+.

What’s surprising is the low level of influence of websites on lender selection. This is what the chatter tells us.

“People are starting online.”

“Lenders must connect with customers online.”

But this Fannie data suggests otherwise. Of recent homebuyers, just 13% said websites were most influential. Of those who got multiple quotes, slightly more (17%) of people said websites were most influential in selecting a lender.

Makes sense. If you’re using sites to shop for a lender, those sites will have more influence. But still the number is still pretty low.

Realtors rule the day on influencing how to select a lender, followed by family and friends.

As for what sites, here’s a breakdown. The usual suspects — Zillow and Google — lead the pack. But the numbers are pretty low.

Most influential websites when shopping for a mortgage The Basis Point

It’s important to note that social media was not evaluated in this survey.

In lender circles, most of the chatter about “connecting with customers online” is about social media.

This survey didn’t look at that data. If you have seen any research about the influence of social media on lender selection, please share it!

When Fannie Mae dropped this research earlier this month, the headline was “Shopping Around For A Mortgage Pays Off For Consumers.”

But wanted to share this deeper look into the data.

Here’s a good summary slide, and below is the link to the full research.

First time homebuyer demographics and how they shop for mortgage The Basis Point

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Reference:

Shopping around for a mortgage pays off for consumers (Fannie Mae)