While a combination of relief efforts and a shift towards digital solutions helped mortgage servicing companies achieve high levels of customer satisfaction during the pandemic, much of this improvement in satisfaction came from non-bank companies, which began to gain an edge over bank lenders, according to a recent study by JD Power …
JD Power’s 2021 U.S. Primary Mortgage Satisfaction Survey found that overall satisfaction with mortgage services increased by a significant six points on a 1,000-point scale compared to last year.
“The satisfaction of mortgage servants has been bolstered by the industry response to the pandemic, with some of the greatest gains in customer satisfaction coming from at-risk and moderate-risk clients who have participated in tolerance programs,” said Jim Houston, director of consumer analytics. lending to JD Power, the statement said.
Bank-affiliated service companies have historically outnumbered non-banks by far, but received only four satisfaction points this year, JD Power said. For non-bank service providers, the level of satisfaction increased by 17 points.
“[A]“This pandemic of goodwill goes against a lot of customer experience issues, especially for bank-affiliated lenders,” JD Power said. “As loan-opt-out programs come to an end and more normalized customer interactions resume, traditional banks are starting to lose their edge over non-bank lenders.”
Bank lenders have indeed been very happy with customers who use multiple products at the institution. Customer satisfaction scores for customers using other banking products were 55 points higher than customers with only a mortgage at the bank.
Clients with mortgage repayments have improved their satisfaction this year. Overall satisfaction with at-risk customers increased 15 points from a year ago, while the satisfaction score for low-risk customers decreased by one point. Clients who participated in abstinence programs had the highest satisfaction rates, scoring 846 out of 1000 points, compared to 783 for those who never participated in the program and 776 for those who previously participated in the program but were no longer enrolled.
Post-pandemic customer behavior and low-risk customer responses indicate that the increase in customer satisfaction may be short-lived, Houston said.
“In fact, despite the focus on assistance programs, nearly a fifth of current mortgage customers have not interacted with their service staff over the past year,” Houston said. “Mortgage companies will really need to step up their customer acquisition games as the market stabilizes.”
Website usage has increased by 5 percentage points this year, but there is still room for improvement, according to JD Power. Only 38% of customers said they found the information they were looking for on the customer service website on the first two pages. Overall satisfaction decreased by 55 points for customers who had to visit more than two pages.
Among the main reasons clients cited the issue of changing lender if given the opportunity were better rates, better or better customer service, and “easy access to help yourself get information about my loan.”
Rocket Mortgage, which includes Quicken Loans, received the highest ranking in mortgage servicing with a score of 860. Guild Mortgage ranked second (825) and Huntington National Bank ranked third (827). The industry average was 787 people.