Becoming a real estate agent or a mortgage loan officer is a question of what side of the real estate industry coin you want to be on. Before you can answer this question it is crucial to know what these two positions require in terms of education and what some of your duties will be. It is also important to know what you will be compensated in terms of annual salary. If you are interested in the real estate industry, both of these positions can offer a long and rewarding careers with plenty of room for growth. For both a real estate agent and a mortgage loan officer, the sky is the limit. So, which is right for you?
In terms of having the right personality, to become a real estate agent or a mortgage loan officer you must be outgoing and incredibly sociable. A real estate agent, however, must be able to work with a seller of a house to make it as marketable as possible in order to find a prospective buyer. It’s do or die and you must do anything you can to sell the house that is on your listing within a timely manner, before the sale goes stale and you lose your commission. As a mortgage loan officer, you will be working with a borrower to find lenders with low enough interest rates that match your client’s unique financial needs.
Next, you will need the same amount of schooling in order to become a real estate agent or a mortgage loan officer, which is usually a high school diploma and a degree from a four year college. However, a real estate agent must obtain their real estate license in the prospective state that they want to operate in. On the other side of the coin, a mortgage loan officer must have a pretty strong background in both marketing and mathematics. A mortgage loan officer must also be acutely aware of the mortgage rates and fluctuations in the economy of the real estate market. A mortgage loan officer might use a site like RateSupermarket Inc. to review the current rates in order to give their clients the most agreeable loan.
Next, both real estate agents and mortgage loan officers have the potential to earn the same amount with either a commission based pay or a salary – sometimes both. A real estate agent will make a commission from the sale of a house and a mortgage loan officer will make a commission from each mortgage secured. Both a real estate agent and mortgage loan officer have the opportunity of making a mid 5-figure to high 6-figure salary with commissions and bonuses, depending on where they operate.
Lastly, deciding between becoming a real estate agent and a mortgage loan officer is a little bit like choosing apples and oranges in the real estate industry. You might get paid the same amount, but if you want to work in a more sales oriented position a real estate agent is probably your best option, while if you have a more mathematical and quantitative mindset, you might thrive as a mortgage loan officer.