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Why do Consumers Care About Rates?

If you were a consumer, what have you been trained to ask about? When I started in the business the interest rates were published in the paper, and now you can find them online - even thought much of the rates you see aren't real, or have points, ad conditions they'll not meet - but consumers don't know that. Ultimately as an industry we've trained them over time that 'rates' are what is important... yet it frustrates us when a consumer asks us about our interest rate.

In my book, I share 7-Steps that we created to completely differentiate us in our marketplace. We knew customers would ask about rate, so we prepared ourselves with a process that moved them beyond rates, to possibility - and more importantly what they really wanted but maybe didn't know how to communicate.

(asks the prospect)

What's your rate today?

(my response)

That's a great question - and one of many you should be asking.

There are 7 questions we think every client should ask. The four most important are What product? What payment? What availability? and What Amount?

Whether you choose to work with me or not, make sure you get these questions answered in a clear way as they'll have a huge impact on your cost of owning a home.

(again persists the prospect)

Yes, but what's your rate?

(my response)

If I were you I'd want the lowest possible rate. Is that what you are asking for? If you had the lowest possible rate, what would that make possible? (you are asking for meaning) - keep asking about rate until they admit they really want the lowest Payment.

(my response)

I can see we are on the same page. Now you know why we didn't have interest rate as one of our 7 questions. Most of our clients want the lowest Payment, and they believe rate is the most important factor. Product can influence your Payment more than rate, and the Amount you choose to borrow based on what's Available to you is an important part of the planning process as well.

So let's get to helping you accomplish what you really want = which is the lowest payment relative to other key decisions we'll make together. After we solve for these 4 initial questions and then we can look at others that most clients never know to ask about.

TIP: I'd hold back the other 3 questions as I knew they may still rate shop me, but they'll never get that level of understanding from another lender about what they really want. Certainly not from Rocket Mortgage or an inexperienced order taker. They'll want to come back and learn more about what I didn't share with the, and interest rate is no longer the driving factor for a liability advisor.

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