Starting his career in 2003, Michael Bencks has navigated the market through its most thrilling highs and vicious lows. As the new producing branch manager at Neighborhood Loans in Old Irving Park, Bencks strives to elevate the mortgage industry’s reputation by demonstrating professionalism, reliability and proficiency. “I’m a stickler for providing the most accurate cost estimates possible upfront so there are no surprises as we go,” says Bencks. “My clients expect me to know how external factors can and will influence their interest rate and to give them a realistic estimate of what the purchase will cost out the door. If I’m wrong about either of those categories, it can really impact their budget and finances.”
Primarily serving first-time homebuyers in Chicago, Bencks is always ready to answer questions or assuage fears no matter the time of day, and takes a casual approach befitting his younger clientele. “I try to speak to everyone involved as if they were my friend and not just part of a transaction, and people can feel that when we communicate,” he explains, adding that he aims to keep his portion of the transaction short and seamless. “These buyers have a million things on their plates during the process; the last thing they need is someone like me adding to the stress and chaos,” he says. “I want my portion of the purchase to be done weeks in advance, so no one is ever waiting on me.”
Bencks places a heavy emphasis on personal and professional growth both for himself and the new loan officers he trains. He participates in coaching through Neighborhood Loans to improve his production and work-life balance and attributes his success, in part, to his longtime mentors.
Previously recognized by Top Agent Magazine, Real Producers magazine and Chicago Agent magazine, Bencks is an affiliate member of the Chicago Association of Realtors and a board member for the organization’s Young Professionals Network. He is on the board of Empowered Poor, an organization dedicated to microlending in India. As a husband and a father of two little girls, Bencks prioritizes family above all else. “I don’t live to work; I work to live,” he says.