Letter to an Aspring Loan Officer

The industry is gearing up for a fight. Any company that can do subprime loans will start vying for market share. Management feels that most companies will fail. Life is going to be difficult here compared to when there was still a refinance boom. Money is not going to pour onto my lap like how this job was first described to me. I’m actually going to have to work – and work hard – for my bread and butter. Fortunately, I don’t know how to do things any differently… ha!

I made enough money to replenish my emergency funds. Now, I have enough for six months worth of expenses. Any more that I make from here on out will be saved for investments. Although the dough isn’t rolling in, at least I’ve accomplished what little I wanted done. I feel like I’m in this for the immediate future.

Every work day is at least 12 hours long. I am so used to working long hours that the term “OT” doesn’t really register anymore. Funny, huh? There are small moments where I yearn for the simplicity of a wage job, you know. Clocking in and out – there is less worry about whether or not all of your efforts will come to fruition. You come in for ten hours, you’ll get paid for 8 hours and 2 hours at one-and-a-half. On a commission, though there’s a high payoff, there is a chance that all of my work on a deal will not amount to a close… and there’s no such thing as “one-and-a-half.”

As risky as the life of a loan officer may be, I sincerely hope that you get your transfer to FSL, either soon or within the year. Working as a loan officer is a formative experience. One of the many things I’ve learned is that there is a lot more to being a broker than previously thought. I will need more than a couple years of experience before I feel comfortable enough to carve out an origination business of my own. Nothing, I believe, can replace the knowledge gained from this experience other than doing the work itself and being surrounded by people who are good in the business. Everyone who is making the big money (the V.P.’s, the lead underwriters, etc.) in this business are very knowledgeable, and they are knowledgeable because they have worked in this industry for over a decade, learning the ropes, the nuances, and the many rules along the way. They are tenacious. They are not adverse to work. Long hours seem to be the norm.

Start soon. Save a year’s worth of money. But, start soon.

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