Senior Vice President
1st Advantage Mortgage, a Draper and Kramer Company
Suren Sampat started working part time in the mortgage industry about 25 years ago. Today, he is senior vice president of 1st Advantage Mortgage, has 23 years of top producer status under his belt, and boasts a litany of awards that have bought him recognition from Scotsman Guide, Mortgage Executive Magazine, National Mortgage News, and now, Chicago Agent’s Who’s Who of Chicagoland real estate.
Sampat’s storied career is built on a foundation of accounting, auditing, and finance – skills he learned in college and honed during his first career as an auditor. The transition to mortgage lending was simple, because, as Sampat says, the core skills are so similar. “It was easy to apply the lessons learned in auditing to mortgage lending,” he says, adding that the minutia of lending was something he had to learn on his own. “I watch the news and have followed market trends for many years – that has enabled me to understand how world events affect the market, and now my clients trust me for sound advice.”
Sampat is a stickler for prompt and proper communication, because, as he puts it, “even if customers do not expect it, they deserve it.” He says that he works with each client closely to understand the details of their situation. That approach allows him to set accurate expectations and prepare for surprise. “I love the problem solving aspect of it all,” he says. “My clients all come from different backgrounds, with different scenarios and situations. I enjoy helping them navigate the process.”
The approach Sampat takes requires quite a bit from him, but it is part of a bigger strategy his group with 1st Advantage has implemented. It emphasizes the importance of blending communication and sound advice with customer service. “We want our customers to understand exactly what they are signing, and what the numbers mean every step of the way,” he explains. Sampat’s aim is to not only educate the client so that they may competently evaluate the process on their own, but also “cautiously advise” them so that they’re able to borrow within their means and remain living comfortably, even after the deal is over.
When Sampat’s not working, he enjoys life with his family; they are particularly fond of traveling (Sampat himself has visited about 75 countries), but also appreciate spending time outside, bowling and golfing. Sampat also makes time to give back, volunteering at a variety of nonprofits that focus on helping both the less fortunate and animals. “I believe life is not just about making money,” he says. “We have to make use of our skills and give back what we can.”