January 27, 2020

What To Expect Initially Working With a Loan Officer

When I tell people that I am a Loan Officer, I have various responses as to what I do. Some people envision me like a banker, while others view me as a financial analyst crunching the numbers. While I love my job, fortunately what I do is much different than most people think. I remember the first time I met with a Loan Officer to buy a home, and I had no idea what to expect going into the meeting; in truth, it was somewhat intimidating to me. I've worked with great Loan Officers in my experience, and fortunately most are exceptional and put you at ease for what is likely the biggest purchase of your life. Here are three things to expect in the first part of the process working with a Loan Officer:

  • Application: The first part of any process in qualifying for a mortgage is filling out an application. The more thorough you can be on the details of your financial picture, the better it is for a Loan Officer to determine what is best for you. In my experience applying for my own loans, I know filling out the loan application may make you feel uneasy, having all of your financial picture in one place for review. This can be especially true if you found your dream home but financing is a necessity to purchasing it. Rest assured, this information is kept strictly confidential and helps us to determine loan programs that are right for you early in the process, helping to avoid hiccups as the closing date draws near.

  • Application Review: Loan Officers have the responsibility to review your current financial situation to determine if you may be qualified for a loan. While this process sounds daunting, it comes down to weighing your income and assets against liabilities you may have - something the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau calls your "Ability to Repay". Once you fill out an application we work with underwriters who review your situation as well, ultimately safeguarding against issuing a mortgage to someone who doesn't have a demonstrated ability to pay for the loan program offered. It is also our responsibility to explain loan programs to you as a borrower, doing our best for you to understand how they work.

  • Documentation: Once the initial application is complete and a Loan Officer has reviewed your credit history, the next step is typically to upload various documents to verify the information you submitted on the application. Depending on your employment, documents such as 2 years of W2 forms, 2 months of bank statements, self-employment income, and several other forms which your Loan Officer will advise you on. This helps to substantiate your down payment and employment history, ensuring that we offer loan programs that are best suited for you.

    The process of buying a loan is incredibly exciting, and I've been in your shoes many times. I've mentioned in my guide for first-time home buyers my experience and how wonderful yet stressful it can be. Working with the right Real Estate Agent and Loan Officer can help your process go as smoothly as possible.