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Score a CX Victory Over Last-Minute Loan Volatility

In a year and an industry when every month seems to produce its own variety of madness, there’s something settling about the reliability of March Madness to give us hope and thrills, excitement and anxiety as we root for our favorite teams in the tournament of tournaments. And no matter who you’re rooting for, it’s undeniable that the final minutes of those games are almost always electrifying. That’s because so much can happen. One misdirected pass or a clutch shot can mean the difference between tears of joy or tears of sorrow. In the mortgage industry, the last days — or even hours — of the loan journey can create that same anxious energy for borrowers. Our question this month: How can lenders make some last-minute clutch shots to win customer delight?

Bringing Home A Customer Delight Victory at the Buzzer

Just like the end of a nail-biter NCAA tournament game, so much can happen in the last hours or days leading up to a loan closing. Suppose the closing itself (the actual appointment) doesn’t start on time or there’s a clerical error on the paperwork — or worse, an unexpected or misunderstood fee. While these miscues may not be enough to completely derail the closing of the loan, they could be enough to flip the borrower from a raving fan to someone who will badmouth you. Regardless of who is at fault, the blame for any miscues at a closing will often be passed along to the lender or originator, particularly when they are not physically — or virtually — represented.


Consider the extent to which Net Promoter Score (NPS) suffers when one or more of these three missteps occur:

Closing Does Not Start on Time
When a closing fails to start on time, an already anxious borrower may start to feel panic as they imagine worst-case scenarios. It’s like the opposing team taking a time-out with ten seconds left on the clock. Nervousness drains delight and NPS falls 65 points.

Chart 1

Source: © 2023 STRATMOR Group, MortgageCX Borrower Satisfaction Program.

Closing Documents Are Not Accurate
When a borrower sees an error on their closing documents, oftentimes a clerical error like a misspelled name or street address, it erodes their confidence that the remainder of the closing package is accurate and NPS falls 83 points.

Chart 2

Source: © 2023 STRATMOR Group, MortgageCX Borrower Satisfaction Program.

There Is an Unexpected Rate or Fee 
When a borrower perceives unexpected rates or fees, they may wonder whether someone pulled a fast one on them. Even a hint of suspicion of hidden costs or a changed rate quickly forfeits the chances of a referral. NPS falls 61 points.

Chart 3

Source: © 2023 STRATMOR Group, MortgageCX Borrower Satisfaction Program.


Here are three ways originators can minimize last-minute miscues and bring home the victory:

  1. Schedule a Time to Review Closing Documents: With more and more lenders embracing hybrid-style closings (borrower signs some documents on their own and some in front of a notary), borrowers have some extra time to review their paperwork. If you want to delight your clients, schedule some time prior to their notary appointment to go over any questions they have about the documents. Setting aside even fifteen minutes can make a huge difference to the borrower and win you referrals and repeat business.
  2. Attend Closing Virtually: Did you know that “virtual attendance” actually earns higher NPS marks than in-person attendance? Hop on a video chat or even suggest that the borrower puts you on speakerphone while they sign documents. It will save you time and create great customer delight. A win-win!
  3. Give Your Borrower Your “Bat Phone”: If you’re too busy to attend closings in person or even virtually, the next best way to ensure customer delight at the closing is to give them unrestricted personal access to you on their closing day if they need it. I’ve heard some originators call it their “Bat Phone.” In other words, tell the borrower, “I’ll be on standby…if you call, I will answer.”

How can you learn more about creating a better customer experience and about how the customer experience impacts your company?

Find out more about STRATMOR Group’s MortgageCX program and how transparency into the loan process can help your company. Contact Mike Seminari at

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