Jay Zulauf’s motivation is simple: having the opportunity to see the happiness of both the agents and buyers at the closing table. “It makes me feel very proud that I have made a positive impact on their lives,” says Zulauf, a senior mortgage banker at Fidelity Bank and a 15-year veteran of the real estate industry.
Working within Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama, Virginia and Tennessee markets, Zulauf successfully sees everyone from first-time home buyers to sophisticated investors through the loan process, communicating at every step in order for them to feel comfortable and confident about the transaction. He also assists agents with marketing their properties so that they can show prospective buyers their payment options upfront.
“I respect the time of my agent-clients and want to make sure that they are working with a buyer who has been properly vetted and pre-qualified for a mortgage,” he says. “The last thing I do will be to waste their time. There is earnest money on the line with the borrower and I want to make sure they have been properly pre-qualified.”
Before entering the real estate industry, Zulauf was the managing director for North American Funds and a Mutual Fund wholesaler with Federated Investors, bringing in $165 million in new assets and managing in excess of $300 million in assets. He then went on to become a Loan Officer with First Discount Mortgage. Zulauf is a member of the Mortgage Bankers Association of Georgia and has been awarded the association’s GOLD Award for the past three years.
Part of Zulauf’s success stems from having completely open lines of communication with his buyers and agents. “I am always accessible and work seven days a week to answer any questions they may have,” he says, adding that his ability to conceive of innovative solutions has led to many referrals. “I like to think outside the lending box.” Each year he participates in continuing education programs to stay abreast of changes and trends in the mortgage industry.
In his free time, Zulauf enjoys spending time with his family and traveling. Zulauf played college basketball at Marquette University and professionally in Europe. “Life is about experiences,” he says. “I want my kids to have this perspective on life.”