For Anthony Pipitone his long experience in the mortgage industry – especially during the 2008 collapse – has profoundly impacted his philosophy on the business. Seeing how the commission-based, fee-oriented nature of most mortgage companies had caused so much chaos and pain, he knew it was time for mortgages to be approached with a new attitude.
“Five years ago I decided to open up my own mortgage company, Rockbottom Mortgage, with a unique business model,” Anthony says. “My philosophy on originating mortgages is different, and I’m more oriented towards a customer service, low rates, and low fees as opposed to commissions on sales.”
Anthony keeps those rates and fees low by staying small. “We have a team of just three people,” he says. “That’s part of the business model: keep our overhead as low as possible. That way we can pass on that savings to our customers; we do high volume as opposed to high margins.”
Even at high volume, Anthony makes sure to bring a personal touch to each loan. “Everybody’s situation’s a little bit different,” he says.”Even with a conventional mortgage, every situation is different. Somebody may be self employed, somebody may have asset issues, somebody may have credit issues. It’s fun to solve that problem for the person and put them in the best mortgage possible.”
That is part of what drives Anthony’s incredible repeat and referral business. “I would say about 60 percent of my past borrowers I’ve worked with two, three times over,” he tells Top Agent. “We are a discount mortgage company, so obviously our rates and our fees are always the lowest. That’s part of why we get so many referrals, but it’s not the only reason. We are all hands on deck with customers from the beginning to the end. They’re not only getting the discount aspect, they’re also getting the customer service aspect. People are very comfortable with working with us because we walk them through the entire process. We don’t sacrifice one for the other; we are committed to offering not only the lowest rates and fees but also the best customer service.”
When he’s not getting his clients into new homes, Anthony likes to support children’s charities like St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, autism charities as well as PETA. He also spends time with his wife and kids, sometimes serenading them with music. “I play the banjo,” he tells Top Agent. “It’s my little hobby.”
Growth is in the future for Rockbottom Mortgage… but careful growth. “I have to find the right people with the right mindset,” he says. “Because we sacrifice a little bit of income in order to provide a better mortgage. That means we make it up in volume, so I need people who work harder but are also dedicated to maintaining my high level of customer service.”