The Balance Between Digital Mortgage and Personal Touch

By Brent Powers  |   Director of Mortgage Solutions

I tend to be stuck in my ways – It was the first time in years I went into something new with an open mind.


Recently, I attended the Digital Mortgage Conference in Las Vegas and had no idea what to expect from the event. Fortunately, I left the two days of sessions and demos amazed at the mortgage technology available today.


The mortgage industry has come so far in recent years, as lenders and service providers work to stay in front of the ever-evolving technological demands of today’s consumer. Lenders, service providers and technology developers must now address how the consumer will receive information. Not only do we look at the ability to send and receive information electronically, but we must also look at mobile rendering and ensure the consumer can easily view the information on a smart phone or tablet.


All of this made me think.


What does evolution in the mortgage industry mean to credit unions across the nation?


As it is, I am a member of a credit union, so I decided to visit their website and review what was available to me as a consumer in their digital environment. As it turns out, I have access to everything I would expect big banks and technological leaders to provide.


What’s the difference?


I don’t see a lot of advertising by credit unions to promote their technology. Sure, I see advertising by the large credit unions, but the focus is not historically on the technology that is available, as we see with many large banks or mortgage lenders.


While most big banks and mortgage lenders focus on an entire digital experience, it’s the personal touch that drives credit unions. Could this be the reason we don’t see as much advertising from credit unions?


The truth is, credit unions can and do offer the same digital mortgage experience to their members that the most technologically advanced banks and mortgage lenders offer. Sure, there are many credit unions that do not have the technology resources to offer such an experience. Others may simply choose to not provide this option, but that doesn’t mean it’s not available to them in one way or another, such as a mortgage CUSO.


As a consumer, I want to know that at any point I can pick up the phone and have a direct line to someone that will answer any question I have. Don’t get me wrong, I still want the self-service capabilities that a digital experience provides. That’s extremely important for today’s consumers. But eventually, in almost every digital offering, consumers are going to have questions that need to be answered by an industry expert.


This is where the personal touch that characterizes credit unions becomes the missing piece to the puzzle. Having that critical piece allows credit unions with a digital presence to provide the perfect solution for their members.