A loan officer is a representative of a bank, credit union, or other financial institution who finds and assists borrowers in acquiring loans. Loan officers can work with a wide variety of lending products for both consumers and businesses. They must have a comprehensive awareness of lending products as well as banking industry rules, regulations, and required documentation.

Loan officers review loan applications and analyze an applicant's finances to determine who is eligible for a loan, but they also educate consumers on loans, verify financial information and contact individuals and companies to see if they want to apply for a loan.

Key Takeaways

  • Loan officers work with a lending institution and their borrowers to provide consultation, application, underwriting, approval, and deal-closing services on loans.
  • Loan officer salaries average just over $170,000 per year as of 2021, according to Indeed.com.
  • These financial professionals must have a bachelors degree, and increasingly a masters degree in a related field, and are encouraged to obtain the mortgage loan originator credential.

Loan Officer Salaries

The average yearly salary for a loan officer in 2021 was $170,784 per year according to the jobs website Indeed. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the lowest 10% of wage earners in this field earn a yearly salary that is just under $32,820, but earners in the top 10% earn an average salary of over $132,290.

Wages vary based on employer as well as job performance. Some loan officers are paid a flat salary or an hourly rate, but others earn commission on top of their regular compensation. Commissions are based on the number of loans these professionals originate or on how their loans are repaid.

Loan Officer Duties and Requirements

Loan officers communicate with numerous individuals to facilitate the lending process for banking clients. Loan products that may involve a loan officer can include personal loans, mortgage loans and lines of credit. They work with a wide variety of lending products and have a comprehensive awareness of them and banking industry protocols, giving borrowers greater confidence in executing a lending deal.

Loan officers are a direct source of contact for borrowers seeking loans from financial institutions. Many borrowers prefer working with a loan officer directly to ensure that all of their needs are met. While traditional bank lending procedures can be more time intensive, the personal interaction often gives borrowers greater confidence in executing a lending deal.

This financial career requires a bachelor's degree, and most applicants earn a degree in business, finance, accounting or a related field. In some cases, people who have experience in a related business career are able to enter this field without a bachelor's degree. Many employers offer a great deal of on-the-job training, but mortgage lenders must take classes and pass a test to get their Mortgage Loan Originator license.