What is a Loan Officer?

One has the option of choosing a mortgage broker who is a freelance operator soliciting for different banks or a loan officer who is normally attached to a single bank and usually on its payroll too when approaching a bank for a loan or mortgage. The mortgage broker is a licensed practitioner and so is governed by the federal government’s directives whereas a loan officer works under the license of his organization and so though in theory can be held responsible for his actions, in practice, it rarely happens. There are numerous cases of the loan officer not divulging all the details or fine print until the deal is signed, when it is too late for the borrower to back out. So it is better to go with a known and trusted individual or do your own research and get all the details before contacting a bank for your loans.

As any loan officer works for the lender, he will be looking out only for the interests of the lender, verifying if the borrower is capable of repaying the loan. His job is not to look for the best possible deals for the borrower. It is incumbent upon the borrower to find out if the terms he has been offered are the best or is there a better deal to be found at some other bank. His function is only to sell loan packages for his bank, to customers with the potential to repay and not default. He is the point of contact through which you can establish contact with the lending bank. You deal with him for discussing the terms of your loan, negotiating interest rates, etc. He deals with the necessary documentation and verification process and till the day you sign on the dotted line, he is your contact and ‘go to’ person in the bank. He deals with all the people who approach the bank for loans for all sorts of reasons – personal loans, student loans, mortgages, etc. and he needs to be well versed in the documentation process for all loans. For all purposes, he is also the customer service representative of the bank. He meets with you, finds out your needs and comes up with a workable deal between the bank and the borrower.

Of course, given the current trend of everyone going online, like Amazon for retail trade and eBay for the local garage sales, online lending communities have come up, though now only in the UK and the US. However before long, they will become ubiquitous and then shopping for a loan will be like buying on eBay. Just as anyone can trade on eBay simply by registering, in these communities too you can borrow or lend. All you need is an internet enabled account and a social security number. Like an auction on eBay, the interest charges can be bid upon. You can decide to whom for what you are lending. it is all done online, electronically and efficiently.

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