Top 3 Things – A Day in the Life of a Loan Officer

When you apply for a home loan, you are asked for a barrage of items. I know. It is a lot sometimes. You have to trust me when I tell you that the list you are sent has been carefully combed over so that the items I ask you for are the ones that are truly needed. It is all for good reason.
I know that it is tempting…oh so tempting… to try and take shortcuts on the documents. I mean, why do we need so many dang things?
Well, I am gonna tell ya! Today, you are going to hear The Top 3 things that our customers try to skip out on. I will share with you why we need what we need and what we often get instead.
1) Bank statements. We need ALL pages and no redactions. I would say that this is the most common item that clients try to take shortcuts on. We either get screenshots of balances (which we cannot use), 2 out of the 4 pages (I mean, because why would we need the blank page?), or statements that have blacked out account numbers or transactions.
Hear me out here. The reason that we need bank statements is not because we care about the weird things you spend money on. We have to make sure that the money that you are using for your down payment and closing costs are from allowable sources. We also need to make sure that you don’t have any undisclosed debt. We also have to source unusual deposits and need the bank statements (all accounts) to paper trail your money.
When you screenshot your account balances, it tells me nothing and it cannot be used. We need the actual bank statements…all pages. I know that, to you, it makes sense to throw those blank pages out because they are blank! Duh! But, how do we know that?
So, next time your loan officer asks you for bank statements, don’t be sending screen shots and such!

2) Please please please do not take pictures of your documents with your phone. Sure, taking a picture of your W2 with your smart phone certainly sounds like a good idea, however, it is not. Let me tell you why.
First, the angles are usually all off or there are shadows of your hand on there. It makes it difficult to read. Additionally, most of the pics are not of good quality and when we upload them, they become too blurry to read. If we can’t read it, we can’t use it.
My suggestion is to either download a scanner app  or use the scan option in your “Notes” app. They turn your pics into an easy to read PDF. On our Guardian app, we also have a built in scanner so you can upload your clear document right into your file!

3) Be truthful and transparent. You have to trust me on this one – us loan officers have seen and heard everything. We probably know more than your doctor about you. We take this responsibility very seriously. Much like a doctor though, you have to tell us what is going on so we know how to fix it. We need to know if you are truly married, whether or not you are thinking about changing jobs, if you recently opened a credit card, where you are getting your down payment money from etc. If we know what we are dealing with – TRULY dealing with- then we can help troubleshoot before it is too late. Surprises = disaster for your home loan. No one likes surprises.

There you have it! I hope that I have educated you a little bit so that the next time you are asked for certain documents, you understand. Just remember this: We want to help you. We are here to help you. So, help us help you!

Thank you so much for reading today. I hope that I made you smile and think a little bit. To reach me, visit

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