I talked a little bit last week about some of the myths surrounding the highly coveted Millennial homebuyer. A Millennial myself, I find some of the conversations about targeting this segment to be downright amusing. And while plenty of lenders are getting it right, there are still plenty of mistaken assumptions floating around out there. This week, I’d like to tackle the myth that if it ain’t high-tech, a Millennial ain’t interested.
Sort of right. But sort of wrong, too.
Yes, we Millennials grew up in an era of Xbox, texting and Internet at our finger tips. While previous generations stood in line for their student loans, we went online. So most of us are definitely at ease using modern technology and adapting to innovation.
However, at the core of this is not the belief that all new things are inherently better. Rather, if I may be so bold as to speak for an entire generation, we hate to waste precious time on the mundane and administrative when there are clearly better ways to get something done. One survey hit it on the head with this fact: “42% of people under 35 would rather clean a toilet than call a [customer service call center.]”
Yes, I’m looking at you mortgage industry. Well…at us! I’ve long railed against our proclivity to stick to the bolt-ons and ad hoc processes that are so clearly inefficient to the consumer. Yes, we are risk-averse for good reason. But most of us realize that we’re still a long way away from having a truly efficient borrowing process.
Now, here’s a surprise for you. Most Millennials really don’t want a fully online process when it comes to something as important as a home loan. Don’t get me wrong. There could be a lot more online when it comes to the application process and, even worse, underwriting and closing. But we don’t want our trusted advisor to be a chatbot or, even worse, an FAQ that answers questions nobody actually asked.
Don’t forget. We’re the crowdsourcing, community-focused generation. We want the human touch when it actually adds value to a transaction. So while we don’t want to waste our time cutting and pasting documents into some 1995-era DOS-based system during the mortgage process, we do want a knowledgeable human being capable of answering the “well…sometimes that’s true, but not this time and here’s why” types of questions.
Never underestimate the power of the human touch. Combined with efficient, effective technology, it could be one of the keys to winning repeat business from the Millennial.
What do you believe to be the biggest myths about Millennials with regard to homeownership and mortgage lending? Please share with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.