Sydney-based fintech company, LoanOptions.ai, has introduced a unique model that enables mortgage brokers to access home loan leads by investing in its asset and business finance offering.
Led by founder and CEO Julian Fayad (pictured above), the company’s main product offering paves the way for mortgage brokers diversifying into commercial and asset finance. However, what sets it apart is its circular model of generating home loan leads, presenting new opportunities for brokers.
“We have around 35,000 people a month visit our website so naturally there will be some people interested in home loans and we take those eight to 10 leads per day and circulate them through our network,” Fayad said.
Equipped with AI technology and tracking systems akin to pizza delivery applications, LoanOptions.ai has established itself within the asset and commercial finance space since its 2020 launch.
But while it has dedicated team for writing these loans, Fayad has stayed away from the mortgage loan space, choosing to capture qualified leads for brokers instead.
The way this works begins with a customer clicking on the home loan function through the website.
After the client enters their details such as their phone and email details, a six-digit code is sent to the potential customer’s mobile number to ensure that it’s a verified lead. Once it’s entered, Fayad said LoanOptions.ai split the leads through its mortgage broker network.
“We are giving them leads that our website generates organically,” Fayad said. “It’s weighted by who’s supporting us. The more the mortgage broker supports us with asset loans, the more mortgage leads we give them.”
Developing new lead streams
In an increasingly competitive market, lead generation is often one of the top concerns for mortgage brokers. Some even resort to predatory lead generation operations that could land the broker in hot water.
“Some mortgage lead providers sell their leads to multiple brokers at once or they market their own brand, create the lead, and give it to a broker,” Fayad said. “This is bad practice, but it exists and brokers who don’t generate new leads organically may be tempted.”
“Most mortgage brokers have a very basic enquiry form. Their website is more or less just to show people that they exist, and they are not really prioritising it as a major source of generating leads.”
The “loan widget”, a white-labelled technology developed by Fayad’s team, helps solve this problem by allowing brokers to embed a lead-generation tool on their website.
The technology can generate enquiries and collect full applications on cars, equipment, personal loans, business loans, motorcycles, caravans, and a variety of other custom products.
Fayad said many mortgage brokers were keen to diversify but might not be experts in asset finance. In this case, LoanOptions.ai’s asset finance team would write the loan.
“That’s the stuff we specialise in. Our team facilitates it and gets the loan settled. The mortgage broker just basically has their asset finance on autopilot. They don’t need to do anything, and they just get paid,” Fayad said.
“It offers a way financially viable way for mortgage brokers to diversify, as writing asset loans could often take a similar amount of time as a home loan, but with much less commission.”
How does LoanOptions.ai get paid?
For those wondering how the company gets paid, LoanOptions.ai operates under two main models: a subscription-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering and a revenue-sharing model. Fayad said mortgage brokers can choose the model that best aligns with their business strategy and requirements.
For brokers who prefer to focus on their core expertise and leave asset finance to the experts, the revenue-sharing model is ideal.
In this arrangement, LoanOptions.ai handles all asset finance inquiries, provides expert support, and facilitates the loan process. The mortgage broker, in turn, receives a share of the revenue for any successful loan applications generated through the widget.
Fayad said it was this structure that the “vast majority” of brokers chose.
For asset or commercial finance brokers that want to write the loans themselves and not share the revenue, they can subscribe to the software and deploy it on their own website without the LoanOptions.ai being involved in the transaction at all.
“We can make it so we don’t even get access to the client data. So there’s different ways we can operate.”
Why doesn’t LoanOptions.ai do mortgage broking?
The technology operates under two main models: a subscription-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering and a revenue-sharing model. Mortgage brokers can choose the model that best aligns with their business strategy and requirements.
Importantly for mortgage brokerages, this loan widget can also be used for residential home loans.
Fayad stated that with the AI-matching technology integrated into the widget, the standard mortgage broker site reduced the number of visitors needed to generate one enquiry from 300 to just 60.
But while brokers can choose to revenue share through LoanOptions.ai’s asset finance team, the company stays out of the mortgage space and only generates leads or sells its white label product.
“We want to avoid channel conflict and not bite the hand that feeds us. We have hundreds of broker partners, and it continues to be a successful channel for us and we wouldn’t want to jeopardise that by getting greedy,” Fayad said.
Fayad said that his team were not “experts in the mortgage space” and it would take years to catch up on all the intricate details of mortgage broking.
“We’ve completely invested our time, money, energy into understanding asset finance better than anybody else, Fayad said. “If we were to take energy away from that to divert it to any other product, vertical home loans would not be one of them.”