Editor’s Note: This is the cover story in the December 2020 issue of RISMedia’s Real Estate magazine. Subscribe today.
Rocket Pro Insight Is Changing the Game and Helping Real Estate Agents Enhance Their Business
Empowering real estate agents like never before, Rocket Mortgage® introduced Rocket ProSM Insight this past October to great fanfare. Providing unprecedented visibility into the mortgage process, ensuring a world-class experience for both the homebuyer and their agent, the new product offers agents real-time updates on the status of their clients’ mortgages. They’re now able to see where each loan is in the process, the terms of their clients’ loans, whether additional documentation is needed and when it will close—all from a website and mobile app.
“Our team is constantly leveraging the power of technology to streamline and simplify the mortgage process. Rocket Pro Insight is the latest innovation in a long line of fintech tools we have created to improve the experience and give added confidence to our clients and their partners,” says Jay Farner, CEO of Rocket Companies.
“There is no doubt real estate agents are critical in the home-purchase process. They are the homebuyer’s ally and partner from beginning to end. For that reason, we created Rocket Pro Insight—to arm these professionals with the tools they need to get more clients to the closing table with ease,” adds Farner.
Here, the team at Rocket Mortgage pulls back the curtain, providing an in-depth look into how Rocket Pro Insight is already changing the game—and how agents stand to benefit from the new product.
Unprecedented Visibility Into the Mortgage Process
While the Rocket Mortgage team conducted extensive research to get the platform to where it is today, they stayed true to their commitment to bring to market a product that places the agent at the center of it all—empowering them every step of the way.
“If there’s one thing we understand, it’s that real estate agents have a lot invested in the transaction. Anything we can do to make the process better for them is beneficial,” says Director of Digital Product Management Rob Costello.
And for agents across the board, visibility into the mortgage process tops the list as far as what’s needed to improve the home-buying experience for their clients.
Giving agents everything they’ve been asking for over the years, Rocket Pro Insight is raising the bar when it comes to instilling trust and confidence into the process.
“In an industry where trust erodes a bit when agents feel out of the loop, or when they aren’t given the visibility they need, anytime you can over-communicate and provide additional layers of visibility, you instill trust and confidence,” adds Senior Vice President of Mortgage Banking Paul Blanchard.
Part of the team tasked with creating/developing the overall vision for Rocket Pro Insight—as well as the roadmap for where the product is headed as the future unfolds—Digital Product Manager Karlee Pilarski underscores the importance of the platform’s accessibility into showing agents the things they want to see.
“We’re essentially enabling agents to be able to see the things they want to see in the way they want to see them and at the exact moment they want to see them,” says Pilarski.
“We want to empower them with more knowledge and information so they can speak knowledgeably about what is going on as they help to push the transaction to close faster,” she adds.
Allowing agents to quickly and easily check the status of the mortgage to ensure it is moving smoothly through the process and will be ready for closing on time, Rocket Pro Insight eases the process for everyone involved.
“With 24/7 visibility into all of their clients’ loans with us, Rocket Pro Insight allows real estate professionals to stay in tune every step of the way,” says Costello.
Positioning the agent as the expert in the transaction, Rocket Pro Insight is providing an unmatched level of visibility into the lending experience.
“We’re putting the agent in the passenger seat with us as we push the loan forward so they are in the know about what is happening and more in control of it,” notes Pilarski.
“When you can centralize all that information and communication in a tool that someone can get from their mobile phone or desktop browser, while keeping the agent at the center of the transaction and giving them the tools to be more successful, it’s a recipe for success,” explains Dempsey.
Opening the Door to an Improved Client Experience
Visibility aside, the ultimate motivation behind the creation of Rocket Pro Insight was the desire to constantly improve the client experience.
“We understand the different audiences we interact with—as well as their needs—and since real estate agents are a critical piece of the mortgage process, we knew there was more we could do to help,” says Costello. “To that end, we decided to extend our toolset to them.”
Joining the Rocket Pro Insight platform is extremely easy. Rocket Mortgage® clients can simply grant their agent access at any time, or real estate professionals can request to be connected…with the client’s approval.
Once access has been granted, agents can glean up-to-the-minute details about the loan, its structure, anticipated closing dates and the status of any items that are still being worked on.
Drilling down even further, Rocket Pro Insight also allows agents to check the status of a client’s mortgage approval letter, modify the approval amount—within their approved range—and upload documentation they get from the client directly into the system.
“We are opening the door and saying, ‘Here are all of the things you’ve been asking for that will position you as your clients’ true ally,'” says Pilarski.
Changing the mortgage financing process as we know it, Rocket Pro Insight is transforming the way in which agents interact with the lender—something the industry needs, now more than ever.
Offering a deeper sense of transparency, the team at Rocket Mortgage anticipates changing expectations across the board as far as lenders being more transparent with agents.
“The mortgage process itself is typically one of the biggest, most stressful things a homebuyer is going to go through,” adds Vice President of Partner Development Jeff Kvalevog. “We know that the real estate agent is there to help carry that buyer through the journey into ownership, so we want to make sure we’re aiding in that process.”
Strengthening the Connection Between Agent and Lender
Rocket Mortgage has always placed a heavy emphasis on its relationship with real estate agents. With the launch of Rocket Pro Insight, however, that relationship will continue to strengthen, as agents gain access to the lending experience—a part of the process they traditionally had limited visibility into.
“The relationship with the real estate agent is important because they are a key piece of the puzzle,” says Dempsey. “We recognized the significance of agents in the buying process and felt we needed to extend the same level of value and service to everyone involved,” he adds.
With 21 years of experience with Rocket Companies, Dempsey is keenly aware of the importance of fostering a strong connection between the lender and the real estate agent.
By placing such high value on the relationship with the agent, Rocket Mortgage is solidifying its position as a trusted partner that will help agents achieve their business goals.
“Our goal is for the real estate agent community to realize we are more than just a lender,” says Dempsey. “We want them to see us as a partner—someone that is bringing best-in-class technology and value directly to them.”
“We know how important the agent is to the home-buying process, so we are focused on delivering a great experience to every client and every agent,” says Blanchard.
And while the technology itself will be instrumental in providing agents the visibility they’ve been seeking for a number of years, the dedicated team at Rocket Mortgage will continue to play an integral role in instilling trust and confidence into the process.
Providing transaction updates throughout the loan process the same way they do today, the dedicated team will be expanding their role to that of subject matter experts in regard to the resource and tool that is Rocket Pro Insight.
“While much of the dedicated team’s role is going to stay primarily the same, when onboarding or signing agents up for accounts, they’re going to teach agents all the great ways Rocket Pro Insight can be used to better their business,” says Blanchard.
But it doesn’t end there. In fact, the dedicated team will ensure those still looking for that human touch are able to connect with someone should anything arise that they need an additional layer of help with.
“There is always someone who wants to be able to pick up the phone and speak to someone,” explains Blanchard. “While Rocket Pro Insight will provide additional visibility and communication, there are certain points in the process when an agent may want to talk to a human, so the dedicated team will be there for them when that is needed.”
Paving the Way to a Bright Future
Looking ahead, the future is brighter than ever at Rocket Mortgage, as the company continues to lead the charge on the technology front.
“It’s great to be at the forefront of innovation and technology,” says Kvalevog, who envisions a utopia where real estate agents turn to Rocket Pro Insight to get all their questions answered—and all their service-related matters attended to.
While the technology is already in place, feedback is the next critical piece of the puzzle.
“Feedback is everything when it comes to product management,” says Pilarski. “We want to ensure that each and every agent who works with us knows that their feedback has been heard—and that we are working hard to give them an experience that will significantly change the way in which they interact with us.”
To date, the feedback the team has received from agents who have used the product has been overwhelmingly positive.
“On day one, we had 1,100 agents enroll in the technology,” says Dempsey, “and the momentum we have since launching is putting us on track to have 15,000 agents on the platform by the end of the year. I think that momentum will continue to exponentially grow as agents continue to leverage the value it brings.”
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Paige Tepping is RISMedia’s managing editor. Email her your real estate news ideas to email@example.com.