Emails take up most of our workday. We spend hours communicating with co-workers, team members, and clients. Maintaining professional and cordial mannerisms online is an important part of developing stronger professional bonds and future partnerships.
Let’s start with the subject at hand:
This is what will make you standout in someone’s inbox. Your subject will also determine the level of urgency to which your message should be attended to. i.e: If you are a client with a question about your mortgage application, your subject should make it clear for a loan officer to answer, and help right away:
“ Quick question about filling out application.”
Loan officers sending emails should focus on making their subject line straight to the point and relevant to the content matter so that all recipients are aware of the reason for the email. Realtors, clients, and any other parties involved should know right off the bat what the full message will pertain to.
“Approved: Mr. and Mrs. Brady. Address: 188 NE 30th Ave.”
In this case, your message would be about a couple who has been approved for their mortgage, and are interested in a house located at that address, which the realtor is already aware of from a previous conversation.
Introduction and Signature:
When sending a first round of emails as a loan officer, real estate broker, or as a client, introduce yourself with your name, and reason for reaching out, unless all recipient(s) included in the email know you. Wishing a “good morning, afternoon, or evening” and adding “hope all is well.” is a polite way to begin your message. Signing off at the end of an email is a formal and necessary step. Below are a few suggested ways to close before your signature stamp:
All the best,
Looking forward to hearing back,
Have a great day,
One of the above variations should lead into your signature:
State your full name, your position and company name, a direct contact number and/or office number, professional email address, and an optional logo:
First Name, Last Name
Title, A&D Mortgage
What to check over before pressing ‘Send’:
Always proofread the subject and body of your email to check for any spelling errors, or missing information.
- Who are you sending this to? Make sure you are sending this email to the correct address(es) and that whoever needs to be CC’d or BCC’d in the email is included.
- Are all documents mentioned in the email attached? Double check that the correct attachments are included in the email.
- Is the information confidential? Before posting sensitive material as a part of an email message, or as an attachment, depending on your role in the conversation, verify the following:
- Client: Ask your loan officer if this information can be sent via email.
- Loan officer: Confirm privately with your client if this information can be shared with the realtor, insurance agent, or anyone else prior to sending it without permission. Some things should be kept through face-to-face, or phone communication.
Reply, Reply All, Forward:
When replying to an email and creating a thread of the conversation, keep it relevant to the subject. If a new matter arises, start a new email thread with a new subject line that relates to the additional topic. Even if you have received an email with a few people involved in the thread, sometimes you don’t need to hit “reply all.” Review the message and reply to the people who need to respond, or be aware of the message. Forwarding can be tricky: If you need to fill someone in on the entire conversation that went on, then, yes, forwarding the full thread is a good option. Although, when you just need to share the latest reply with someone not involved in the original thread, consider starting a new email thread and briefly relay the message, or copy and paste the information that needs to be shared.
Always reply, and in a timely manner.
Open emails as soon as you can to detect the urgency of the message. In cases when emails contain time sensitive materials and need to be resolved and answered as soon as possible, focus on accomplishing those tasks to respond with an update. It is recommended to answer emails within business hours for more productive communication. It always depends on the subject of the email, but if it is not an emergency, the common accepted time to respond is in between 24-48 hours. When it comes to business inquiries, such as a new client reaching out searching for a loan officer, try your best to answer within 2 hours of receiving the message. Introduce yourself in your answer and try scheduling a phone call, or meeting to see how you can help them further with their mortgage questions.
To maintain a respected and professional relationship, avoid sending emails pertaining to a new topic, or asking a question over the weekend, and on holidays. Prepare the email subject/ body in advance, and send it at the beginning of the work week, early in the morning.
Phone, or email?
When discussing a topic over email that requires extended explanations and negotiations, it may be time to make a phone call with a follow-up email to the call confirming the conversation with a summary of the discussion. If you need to talk about your client’s situation with a real estate agent based on information you just received, it may be best to share that info with the realtor over the phone, and continue after that conversation over email with the next updates. If you have a meeting with a client, loan officer, or real estate agent and need to cancel, or reschedule call and email in advance, if possible, to let them know. When a group is involved, emailing will be the more practical choice for delivering the updated meeting time.
- Extra Touches: Sometimes your guests may be hesitant to choose a spot to sit in on their own and prefer that you, as the host, tell them where to sit. To avoid assigning seats after everyone arrives, create simple place cards by every plate for each person to know their seat. Feature an appetizer area by your kitchen island, or on a designated table in the living room with light refreshments and a “Thank- You Jar.” Create this activity by putting a mason jar, pens, and pre-cut paper rectangles for people to write what they’re thankful for on. Later during the dinner, you can bring the jar to the table and have each person read a message out loud. Throughout the evening, play some music on low in the background to set a holiday vibe.
How to prepare your guest bedroom, and bathroom:
Are any of your guests from out of town and staying over for the holidays? A week before they arrive, start preparing their room(s) by making the beds with clean, freshly washed sheets. Sweep and mop the floors, and dust bed headboards and nightstands. Check if all the lights, lamps, and fans are working properly, and that the TV remote has batteries. Test out curtains,and/ or drapes to make sure they open and close well. Write a note with your WiFi password, and home address, and leave it on the nightstand. Put one large bath towel per guest folded neatly on the bed, and hands and face towels in the bathroom. Test the toilet to make sure it works properly, and leave extra toilet paper rolls beneath the sink. Add a small basket with an extra toothbrush, toothpaste, and cotton balls in case your guest(s) forgot them at their homes. Restock the shower with soap, body wash, shampoo, and conditioner.
A few extras to include: Air freshener, lotion, women’s sanitary products, loofahs, and an unused hair brush. If you live in a cold city, add an extra throw blanket on top of the bed for comfort. If you live in a building, or in a gated community let the front desk know in advance that you will be having company for X amount of days and provide them with your guests’ first name(s) and last name(s) so that security is aware those approved names can have full access to your complex and to all amenities. With these preparations, your guests are sure to feel at home away from home.