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Loan officers evaluate, authorize, or recommend approval of loan applications for people and businesses.Duties
Loan officers typically do the following:
Loan officers use a process called underwriting to assess whether applicants qualify for loans. After collecting and verifying all the required financial documents, the loan officer evaluates the information they obtain to determine the applicant’s need for a loan and ability to pay back the loan. Most firms use underwriting software, which produces a recommendation for the loan based on the applicant’s financial status. After the underwriting software produces a recommendation, loan officers review the output of the software and consider any additional information to make a final decision.
The work of loan officers has sizable customer-service and sales components. Loan officers often answer questions and guide customers through the application process. In addition, many loan officers must market the products and services of their lending institution and actively solicit new business.
The following are common types of loan officers:
Commercial loan officers specialize in loans to businesses, which often use the loans to buy supplies and upgrade or expand operations. Commercial loans frequently are larger and more complicated than other types of loans. Because companies have such complex financial situations and statements, commercial loans usually require human judgment in addition to the analysis by underwriting software. Furthermore, some commercial loans are so large that no single bank will provide the entire amount requested. In such cases, loan officers may have to work with multiple banks to put together a package of loans.
Consumer loan officers specialize in loans to people. Consumers take out loans for many reasons, such as buying a car or paying college tuition. For some simple consumer loans, the underwriting process is fully automated. However, the loan officer is still needed to guide applicants through the process and to handle cases with unusual circumstances. Some institutions—usually small banks and credit unions—do not use underwriting software and instead rely on loan officers to complete the underwriting process manually.
Mortgage loan officers specialize in loans used to buy real estate (property and buildings), which are called mortgage loans. Mortgage loan officers work on loans for both residential and commercial properties. Often, mortgage loan officers must seek out clients, which requires developing relationships with real estate companies and other sources that can refer prospective applicants.
Within these three fields, some loan officers specialize in a particular part of the loan process:
Loan collection officers contact borrowers who fail to make their loan payments on time. They work with borrowers to help them find a way to keep paying off the loan. If the borrower continues to miss payments, loan officers start the process of taking away what the borrower used to secure the loan (called “collateral”)—often a home or car—and selling it to repay the loan.
Loan underwriters specialize in evaluating whether a client is creditworthy. They collect, verify, and evaluate the client’s financial information provided on their loan applications and then use loan underwriting software to produce recommendations.
Most loan officers need a bachelor’s degree and receive on-the-job training. Mortgage loan officers must be licensed.Education
Loan officers typically need a bachelor’s degree, usually in a field such as business or finance. Because commercial loan officers analyze the finances of businesses applying for credit, they need to understand general business accounting, including how to read financial statements.
Some loan officers may be able to enter the occupation without a bachelor’s degree if they have related work experience, such as experience in sales, customer service, or banking.Training
Once hired, loan officers usually receive some on-the-job training. This may be a combination of formal, company-sponsored training and informal training during the first few months on the job.Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
Mortgage loan officers must have a Mortgage Loan Originator (MLO) license. To become licensed, they must complete at least 20 hours of coursework, pass an exam, and submit to background and credit checks. Licenses must be renewed annually, and individual states may have additional requirements.
Several banking associations, including the American Bankers Association and the Mortgage Bankers Association, as well as a number of schools, offer courses, training programs, or certifications for loan officers. Although not required, certification shows dedication and expertise and thus may enhance a candidate’s employment opportunities.Important Qualities
Decisionmaking skills. Loan officers must assess an applicant’s financial information and decide whether to award the applicant a loan.
Detail oriented. Each piece of information on an application can have a major effect on the profitability of a loan, meaning that loan officers must pay attention to detail.
Initiative. Loan officers need to seek out new clients. They often act as salespeople, promoting their lending institution and contacting firms to determine their need for a loan.
Interpersonal skills. Because loan officers work with people, they must be able to guide customers through the application process and answer their questions.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Commercial Loan Officer
Top Careers After Commercial Loan Officer
Hispanic or Latino9.4%
Black or African American1.1%
Commercial Loan Officer
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University of Phoenix14.5%
Arizona State University8.1%
University of Utah8.1%
University of Southern Maine5.6%
University of Iowa4.8%
Michigan State University4.0%
Boise State University4.0%
University of Maine4.0%
San Diego State University4.0%
Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico4.0%
University of Oregon4.0%
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville4.0%
University of Idaho4.0%
Central Michigan University4.0%
New York University3.2%
Wayne State University3.2%
University of Nebraska at Omaha3.2%
Commercial Loan Officer
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Commercial Officer||Intertrust Netherlands B.V.||New York, NY||Sep 13, 2012||$145,000|
|Commercial Syndications Officer||HSBC Bank USA, N.A.||New York, NY||Aug 05, 2015||$110,000|
|Commercial Officer||Intertrust Netherlands B.V.||New York, NY||Sep 24, 2011||$98,000|
|VP, Commercial Loan Officer||Cathay Bank||Rosemead, CA||Sep 30, 2010||$85,000|
|Commercialization Officer||Cleveland Clinic||Cleveland, OH||Oct 06, 2011||$80,000|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Hanin Federal Credit Union||Santa Clara, CA||Sep 16, 2016||$72,000|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Triple Eight Properties Inc.||Encinitas, CA||Dec 27, 2016||$71,240|
|Bilingual Commercial Loan Officer||CIB Financial Services, LLC||Aurora, CO||Jun 01, 2010||$60,398|
|Commercial Documentation Officer||HSBC Bank USA, N.A.||Depew, NY||Sep 21, 2012||$59,460|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America||New York, NY||Apr 24, 2015||$57,873|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America||New York, NY||Nov 01, 2014||$57,873|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Collegiate Peaks Bank||Denver, CO||Feb 28, 2011||$56,888|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Collegiate Peaks Bank||Denver, CO||Mar 07, 2011||$56,888|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Dec 23, 2013||$50,088|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Sep 22, 2015||$49,920|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Hanin Federal Credit Union||Garden Grove, CA||Sep 15, 2016||$48,585|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Hanin Federal Credit Union||Santa Clara, CA||Sep 15, 2015||$48,001|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Hanin Federal Credit Union||Los Angeles, CA||Sep 15, 2016||$48,000|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America||Los Angeles, CA||Sep 01, 2015||$46,686|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America||Los Angeles, CA||Jan 08, 2016||$46,665|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Velocity Commercial Capital, LLC||Westlake Village, CA||Sep 08, 2015||$46,530|
|Commercial Loan Officer/Account Executive||Velocity Commercial Capital, LLC||Westlake Village, CA||Sep 08, 2015||$46,530|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Mar 23, 2016||$46,530|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Hanin Federal Credit Union||Santa Clara, CA||Sep 15, 2016||$46,144|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Hanin Federal Credit Union||Santa Clara, CA||Jan 07, 2016||$45,989|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Sep 15, 2013||$45,517|
|Commercial Loan Officer||Shinhan Bank America||Los Angeles, CA||Sep 26, 2012||$44,077|
|Commercial Loan Officer||International Bank of Chicago||Chicago, IL||Sep 24, 2015||$43,618|
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