The duties of a loan officer are so much more than assisting a borrower with their loan application. This job is really about listening, advising and problem-solving. While there are only so many loan products on the market, there are millions of scenarios borrowers face. Their current assets, income, debt and credit must be taken into account, along with their short- and long-term goals. Then, of course, as we all know, things can change.
This places the loan officer in more of a financial consultant role than ever before. That is, if the loan officer hopes to garner repeat business and cultivate long-lasting relationships.
Whether you’re on board with it or not, there’s a solid chance your long-term viability in this industry will be tied to how well you can:
- – Empathize with clients
- – Provide appropriate solutions that match their lending goals
- – Execute top-notch customer service
- – Remain up to date on not just mortgage industry rules and regulations, but broader economic trends, the housing market and interest rates
- – Make contact with new leads
- – Utilize your network and offer your assistance to those who need it
- – Foster relationships with referral partners
- – Remain transparent and communicative at all times
- – Adjust to your clients’ needs, rather than making them adjust to your schedule or sales pitch
The future is marching its way toward us. Stiff competition from other lenders – not to mention technology – will weed out those who aren’t committed to doing their job 100%.
When you’ve mastered the strategies above, it’s a good idea to move onto:
- – Making sure you and your team look good to clients through every touchpoint and interaction
- – Closing every deal on time – which means anticipating problems ahead of time
- – Ensuring you have the right loan product for your client’s needs
- – Asking for help when you have a challenging issue
- – Following up on every lead and communication. That means never dropping the ball until a borrower has told you they no longer need your services
- – Growing your business in a meaningful, organic way to ensure your pipeline is full even in downtimes and down cycles
- – Pivoting when necessary to adjust to changes in the marketplace, client preferences and client financials
This job isn’t for everyone, but for those who can do it successfully, a career as a loan officer can be both personally gratifying and financially rewarding,. Take stock of where your strengths are and where you can improve. Then work consistently and diligently to get your business operating at an optimal level.
We’ll need to be many things to many people if we want to stand out in the future of the mortgage industry.