10 Reasons You May Regret Paying for Reverse Mortgage Leads

Finding leads can seem overwhelming at first for independent mortgage brokers. Buying reverse mortgage leads can seem like an excellent way of giving you a head start. After all, you can get leads instantly (or almost instantly), without having to put in the hard work on your website or promotion. You will also know how much you are spending per lead upfront, and most services let you choose the leads you want to some extent, including by postcode.

But buying reverse mortgage leads is not always as good as it seems. You may run into several factors or scenarios that can lead to you regretting your decision. You should also be aware of the factors that may make you regret your choice to purchase reverse mortgage leads.

1. Reverse Mortgage Leads May Be Low-Quality

As you shop for reverse mortgage leads, keep in mind that there is no guarantee as to the quality of the leads. Most companies will claim to have “high-quality” leads, but this is not always the case given that there is no industry standard.

It is particularly common for leads to be lower-quality in cases where the company relies on its affiliates to supply all of the leads or even some of them.

The issue with potentially buying low-quality leads is relatively apparent. You spend your marketing budget without any results or return on investment. Even worse, you will likely waste time chasing those leads in an attempt to convert them with minimal success.

2. Potentially High Costs for Each Reverse Mortgage Lead

The companies selling reverse mortgage leads know just how valuable these leads are to mortgage brokers, especially independent ones like you. As such, they may charge a high price per lead.

You will definitely find options with more affordable leads, but those are likely to be lower-quality and, therefore, a waste of your time and money.

3. You May Have to Buy a Lot of Reverse Mortgage Leads

Companies selling leads for reverse mortgages will pull you in with the low prices, but you need to think about the total, not the cost per lead. You may need to purchase thousands of leads just to get a handful of conversions. If the cost seems small per lead now, it can quickly add up when you purchase enough to be useful for conversions

As with the problem associated with low-quality leads, not only do you reduce your return on investment due to high initial spending, but you also waste time following leads that will not be fruitful.

4. There May Be Hidden Fees

When you look at the reverse mortgage lead cost, you may not see fees that the company hopes you overlook. For example, some companies will have fees or higher charges per lead if you take advantage of filtering options. This can result in you spending more of your marketing budget than you planned.

You are also likely to pay hidden fees (or upfront higher costs) for sites that let you cherry-pick leads. These may let you preview a lead or see how many times that lead has been sold. This can give you higher-quality leads but at a higher cost.

5. Some Reverse Mortgage Leads May Be Invalid — And Hard to Get a Refund On

Not only will you likely pay a lot for your reverse mortgage leads, but you may find yourself with invalid leads. Most reputable companies will offer some sort of guarantee or refund on invalid leads, either refunding your money or replacing them with valid leads.

The issue will be trying to get the business in question to honor that offer. You may have to spend a lot of time before they admit there were invalid leads and give you a refund or exchange them for valid leads. Resolving issues such as this will almost always be valuable time that could have been used for something more productive. 

6. Reverse Mortgage Leads Are Not Always Easy to Contact

But why would you need to buy so many reverse mortgage leads, especially if you happen to find a company that sells high-quality ones? In addition to worrying about quality, you need to think about your ability to contact them.

When you buy a lead, you will likely get the name, email address, and phone number, but that information does not necessarily make them easy to contact. People are busy, so they may not have time to answer their phone or respond to an email.

People May Not Answer

More importantly, given the prevalence of telemarketing and spam emails, most people are highly selective of the calls they answer and the emails they open, even if they are in the market for a reverse mortgage. If you buy mortgage leads, someone else collected them, meaning that the contacts will not be familiar with your name or contact information.

They will see a call from an unknown number or an email from an unfamiliar address and be wary. Potential clients have no way of knowing that you have their best interests at heart and want to help them. Instead, they will likely be suspicious and assume you are just another marketer.

In other words, your leads may intentionally not respond to your attempts to contact them. This contrasts sharply with leads you collect yourself, as they have already shown an interest in your mortgage brokerage services and are familiar with your name. An example would be the leads you get via features like Webchat, which is included in Podium for free.

7. Reverse Mortgage Leads Come with Competition

The other thing to keep in mind is that you are not the only mortgage broker to purchase a given lead unless you buy exclusive leads. In other words, there may be heavy competition, including from larger mortgage brokerages that have bigger marketing budgets. This means that not only do you have to be able to contact the leads, but you will also have to show them that you are better equipped to handle their reverse mortgage than the competition.

If you’re a broker, learn how to avoid the red flags of predatory lending for your clients.

8. Exclusive Reverse Mortgage Leads Have Downsides, as Well

The solution for needing to compete with other brokers to convert reverse mortgage leads would be to purchase exclusive leads. These are leads that the company in question only sells once, in this case, to you, but they are not perfect.


Exclusive leads tend to be much more expensive than nonexclusive ones. Given that there is never a guarantee that you will convert them, this will reduce your return on investment.

Leads Can Still Fill Out Multiple Forms

The other thing to keep in mind is that just because you get an exclusive lead from a company, it does not mean that you will be the only one with the person’s information. They likely filled out more than one request form. Those other forms will go to companies with exclusive leads in the best-case scenario, but you cannot guarantee this.

Imagine a potential client filled out just two forms to request information or show interest in reverse mortgages. You buy the exclusive lead from the company behind one form, but the company behind the other decides to sell it as nonexclusive. You essentially paid exclusive lead prices for a nonexclusive lead, increasing your costs without any benefits.

9. Reverse Mortgage Leads Can Have Legal Implications

If you decide to purchase leads, you will have to do so carefully, as you do not want to violate Fair Lending Laws accidentally. For example, you need to make sure that you do not only purchase leads in certain areas of your market, excluding minority areas, as this may be considered “redlining.” Similarly, you need to avoid just choosing leads with strong credit scores that are higher than the minimum you work with, as this would be discriminatory. Essentially, you need to be extra careful to ensure you are fair when buying leads.

10. You Will Have to Keep Buying Reverse Mortgage Leads — Unless You Also Make Changes

The other thing to keep in mind is that if you buy reverse mortgage leads instead of generating them yourself, you will have to keep doing so.  Consistently paying for leads as the only avenue for receiving clients is not a sustainable business model in many cases.For the best results, you will still want to work on your website, SEO, and other marketing efforts to attract leads organically. You could theoretically start by buying a few leads while waiting for your marketing efforts to bear results, but you do not want to just buy leads without putting any effort into sustained marketing.

Why Reverse Mortgage Leads Are Relevant to You and What to Use Instead

Why Reverse Mortgage Leads Are Relevant to You and What to Use Instead

Reverse mortgage leads offer you an opportunity to quickly get leads, which is particularly appealing to new or independent mortgage brokers. However, buying leads can be expensive, have a low return on investment, and include heavy competition.

Instead of relying on reverse mortgage leads, savvy, independent mortgage brokers opt for other methods of finding reliable leads. The Webchat feature from Podium, for example, can turn traffic on your website into leads. Combine this with other organic methods, such as SEO, for the best results.

Joseph Jenkins
Joseph Jenkins Director of Professional Services Inside Sales

Joseph Jenkins is a professional services expert at Podium, the leading messaging platform that connects financial, legal, and other professional businesses with their clients.

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