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Mortgage Broker

What They Do

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A mortgage is not a "true" loan. It is the document that spells out the conditions of a loan. So mortgage brokers are not true loan officers. But they do help those who need money to find those who have money.

They do all the necessary research. And they make sure that both sides get the best possible deal under the conditions set out in the mortgage. So mortgage brokers work for both lenders and borrowers.

"We're the intermediary between a buyer of a property and the lending community," says Don Taylor. He is a mortgage broker.

A related career is mortgage banker. But mortgage bankers are not true mortgage brokers because they deal with only one loan supplier -- the bank for which they work. Mortgage brokers, meanwhile, work with many lenders. These include banks, credit unions, trust companies and private lenders.

They work in either residential or commercial real estate financing. And there are some distinct differences.

Residential mortgage brokers work with individuals. Commercial mortgage brokers work with companies. And unlike residential mortgage brokers, they must consider a wide range of factors.

For instance, they must figure out if the business they are about to finance will succeed.

"Putting a commercial package together...is not as straightforward as residential," says Leanne Wilson. She handles both commercial and residential mortgages.

Working hours for residential mortgage brokers vary significantly. They have to work around the work schedules of their clients. So evening and weekend work is common, says Don Reehoorn. He is a senior loan officer.

But this fact also gives Reehoorn a chance to spend time with his kids. "If I want to leave [the office] at 3 and spend time with them, I will do that. I might have to make up for it by working in the evening or going in early the next day."

Working hours for commercial mortgage brokers, meanwhile, are steadier. Taylor says commercial mortgage brokers mostly work 9 to 5 with some weekend work.

All mortgage brokers travel a lot to meet with clients and potential lenders and to inspect properties.

Before taking his current position, Reehoorn worked as a commercial mortgage broker, financing construction projects. Reehoorn says his work would take him up and down the West Coast. He grew tired of it.

But aside from the demands of travel, this profession has no special physical requirements. Taylor says those who may suffer from physical disabilities will not have any difficulties because most of the work is done in offices.

At a Glance

Help people to finance a new home

  • You might have to work evenings and weekends
  • This job involves a lot of travel
  • A degree in a business-related field would help


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  • 1-800-GO-TO-XAP (1-800-468-6927)
    From outside the U.S., please call +1 (424) 750-3900


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OCAP believes that financial literacy and understanding the financial aid process are critical aspects of college planning and student success. OCAP staff who work with students, parents, educators and community partners in the areas of personal finance education, state and federal financial aid, and student loan management do not provide financial, investment, legal, and/or tax advice. This website and all information provided is for general educational purposes only, and is not intended to be construed as financial, investment, legal, and/or tax advice.