Know what to expect: Mortgage Brokers vs. Loan Officers

When it comes to applying for a mortgage loan, you may work with a loan officer or you may choose to work with a mortgage broker. Because both reap the same result (a new home), people frequently confuse the two job types. But as you begin the application process, it can help if you understand how they are different.

What is a Mortgage Broker?

During the mortgage loan process, an individual or firm who is an independent agent for the mortgage loan borrower as well as the lender is a mortgage broker. Your mortgage broker will stand as facilitate between you and the lending institution; which may be a credit union, bank, trust company, finance company, mortgage corporation or even a private investor. A mortgage broker will look at your financial situation to find out which lender is the best fit for you. From application to closing, your mortgage broker facilitates your loan process: offering your loan application to several lenders, and coordinating the process with the lender through to closing. Upon closing, the broker's commission is paid by the borrower.

About Loan Officers

Loan officers work for a specific lending institution (such as a bank) who process mortgages and other loan programs on behalf of their employer alone. Although a loan officer may offer quite a range of loans, they will be programs of that lender alone.

Also known as a "loan representative" or "account executive," a loan officer represents the borrower to the lending institution. The loan officer will guide the borrower through the selection, processing and closing of the loan. Loan officers are paid a commission or salary for their services by their employers.

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