Priority Mortgage Celebrates 30 Years of Referral-Based Lending

Buying a house is often the single biggest purchase a person will make in their lifetime. Setting up a mortgage is a challenging task, but one local businesses is looking to ease that burden while finding customers a great rate. Priority Mortgage Corp. has been successfully originating mortgages for Columbus residents for 30 years.

“Do it the way it’s supposed to be done” was Founder Sam Hill’s guiding principle when he started the company in January of 1984. Doing it the right way has led to 30 years of success in a challenging and evolving industry.

Priority Mortgage helps customers through the entire mortgage process – from filling out the loan paperwork, to the credit check, to final approval. They operate much the same as a normal bank when it comes to setup, however Hill points out several distinct advantages to using Priority Mortgage versus a large, chain bank.

Priority-Mortgage-02It all starts with how Priority Mortgage finds their customers.

“There are several different ways to find borrowers or get borrowers in the door,” Hill says. “The banks already have them in some fashion.” However at Priority Mortgage,”Word of mouth is how we get our business.” The company relies on referrals to find business. They build relationships with real estate agents, builders, financial planners and accountants, “People who have an opportunity to refer borrowers,” Hill says.

Once a Loan Officer at Priority Mortgage gets a referral, they take a vested interest in developing a relationship with their client. While Loan Officers at banks are paid a salary and receive referred clients that come to the bank because they already have an account with them, if the Originators at Priority Mortgage don’t find their own business, they won’t have an income. Being in a referral-based business, the Loan Officers need satisfied customers, achieved by providing excellent customer service.

Going with a mortgage bank instead of a traditional bank also yields lower rates. Hill says that on average, rates are a quarter to three-eighths better than traditional institutions.

In 30 years, Hill has seen many changes in the mortgage industry, which is now highly-regulated because of the downturn in the economy. However, he says, “We are small enough to make changes and adjustments very quickly.” New statutes can be a challenge to understand, but Priority Mortgage is able to educate their 46 employees on changes more quickly than a large bank would be able to.

Hill says many of the above factors have kept the company thriving for 30 years. But also, “We create an atmosphere or a culture here for people to succeed.”

To celebrate three decades Priority Mortgage is planning to give back to the community.

“We are appreciative of people that have referred business to Priority over years, they have kept us in business,” Hill says.

Throughout the year, both the company and individuals will complete 30 acts of gratitude throughout Columbus. Priority Mortgage chose benefits and causes close to their employees’ hearts, like Westerville Area Resource Ministry, American Heart Association, Dublin Food Pantry, the Pink Ribbon Campaign to benefit the Stefanie Spielman Fund and Canine Collective.

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