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This episode reviews last week’s inauguration of President Joe Biden, examining which housing issues the new administration has already taken action on.

Biden’s executive order will extend foreclosure moratorium

President Biden revealed his plan to sign 17 executive orders his first day in office, including am extension of the eviction and foreclosure moratorium to at least March 31.

If consumers aren’t holding lenders back, then who or what is?

The challenge for lenders and investors is understanding how to meet borrowers where they are without layering on risk or getting bogged down in third-party intermediation.

HomeBridge’s Brian White on diversity at a practical level

HomeBridge's Brian “Woody” White discusses ways to increase diversity within the housing finance industry.

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Quicken Loans’ Austin Niemiec on Rocket Pro TPO rebrand impact

QLMS is embracing the Rocket brand to better align with its lending sector

On the heels of going public, Rocket Companies’ broker channel, Quicken Loans Mortgage Services (QLMS), made waves throughout the industry when it announced it would be rebranding to Rocket Pro TPO in an effort to closer align itself with the brand that has become ever-present in the lending space. Its leader, Executive Vice President Austin Niemiec, recently chatted with HousingWire to discuss the transition and why the lender believes this will generate massive success for its partners.

HousingWire: Austin, what was the catalyst for the decision to rebrand?

Austin Niemiec: At QLMS, we understand what our partners want because being a broker is in our DNA. Dan Gilbert started Quicken Loans as a small brokerage in the Detroit area 35 years ago and grew it into the nation’s largest mortgage lender. We are now leveraging our experience and expertise to offer our partners a platform that will allow them to witness similar intense growth.

Rocket Pro TPO

QLMS has always been focused on providing exceptional pricing, products and technology to our partners. It has made us a lot of fans – more than 40,000 of them are partner LOs right now. We have been listening closely to our partners and their feedback. Through that research, we learned there were three areas where they are clamoring for advancement with every lender they partner with: more technology, marketing and better access to leads. Thanks to the rebrand and leaning more into Rocket, we are able to give brokers exactly what they are asking for.

HW: You mentioned technology advancements. How are you bringing in more tech to support your partners?

AN: Rocket Mortgage sparked the digital revolution in the industry. With this rebrand and by aligning with Rocket, we will be injecting that same technology into the systems and platforms our partners use. This means a completely updated, white-labeled and broker-branded origination hub that is not only beneficial for loan officers, but also their clients who will experience a more streamlined process with heightened transparency.

Rocket Pro TPO will also help partners through PathFinder, our exclusive tool which is now partners’ go-to resource for anything and everything underwriting-related. Literally every second counts for brokers, and PathFinder ensures that less time is spent sifting through dense guidelines or finding current policies by creating a resource that will find answers to all loan officers’ questions. To do this, we merged two of our most popular resources, Guru and The Answer – and injected additional tech from Google, literally the best of the best in the world of web search.

We also added a ton of complementary features, like a BPMI calculator and Title Gadget, into the one centralized location. This will aid brokers in assisting their clients to the highest degree, as well as allow them to support more Americans in their goal of financing their home.

HW: How does aligning with the Rocket brand create more synergy in your marketing campaigns?

AN: What is really cool about this rebrand is there are essentially endless possibilities in how our partners can leverage the Rocket brand to generate more business. Previously, we were offering social tiles and flyers which were a good start. Now, however, we are truly upping the ante. Partners can capitalize on the $5 billion Rocket Mortgage has spent on marketing, as well as tie into leads generated by national and local ad campaigns.

Independent mortgage brokers are experts in their local area. Their clients trust them because they are from that community, provide personalized service, and focus on being educators and advisers. Brokers can take all those benefits and lean on the brand awareness of Rocket to make them the obvious choice for consumers in their area. We know that brokers leveraging our brand, while still providing that local touch that they are known for, is a match made in heaven that will be fruitful for all.

HW: Going forward, is this rebrand something you plan to build upon? If so, how?

AN: There is so much to be excited about when looking at the future of Rocket Pro TPO.

I already touched on technology and marketing, but another huge boost for our partners will come from the referral network we are building. We aspire to – and will soon have – one of the largest referral networks in the country.

Consumer-facing influencers like real estate agents and financial advisors will be able to submit a client’s information on our Rocket Pro Referral platform to begin the application. They can then send that file digitally to the local independent mortgage broker of their choice for the partner to finish the process. This creates a two-way benefit with real estate agents having incredible visibility into their client’s loan and having certainty around if it will close, while loan officers receive more ready-to-transact borrowers.

That is just one of the many ways we are looking to innovate in the near future. There is so much more I could talk about in terms of how referrals, marketing and technology will all be revolutionized in the coming months, years and decades.

I invite everyone to join our partner network and experience this journey with us. Let’s Rocket together.  

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