Career and Education Opportunities for Loan Counselors in Portland, Maine
Many educational and employment opportunities exist for loan counselors in the Portland, Maine area. The national trend for loan counselors sees this job pool growing by about 16.3% over the next eight years. In general, loan counselors provide guidance to prospective loan applicants who have problems qualifying for traditional loans.
Loan counselors earn about $17 per hour or $36,500 annually on average in Maine and about $18 per hour or $37,470 yearly on average nationally. Loan counselors earn less than people working in the category of Accounting and Auditing generally in Maine and less than people in the Accounting and Auditing category nationally. People working as loan counselors can fill a number of jobs, such as: lending services manager, finance manager, and commercial lending vice president.
There are twenty-three schools of higher education in the Portland area, including one within twenty-five miles of Portland where you can get a degree to start your career as a loan counselor. The most common level of education for loan counselors is a Bachelor's degree. It will take about four years to learn to be a loan counselor if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Loan Counselor
In general, loan counselors provide guidance to prospective loan applicants who have problems qualifying for traditional loans. They also guidance may include determining the best type of loan and explaining loan requirements or restrictions.
Loan counselors interview applicants and request specified data for loan applications. They also contact applicants or creditors to deal with questions about applications or to help with completion of paperwork. Equally important, loan counselors have to check loan agreements to insure that they are complete and accurate, in line with policies. They are often called upon to maintain and review account records, updating and recategorizing them in line with status changes. They are expected to analyze applicants' financial status and property evaluations to establish feasibility of granting loans. Finally, loan counselors submit applications to credit analysts for verification and recommendation.
Every day, loan counselors are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they speak clearly.
It is important for loan counselors to supervise loan personnel. They are often called upon to calculate amount of debt and funds available to develop methods of payoff and to estimate time for debt liquidation. They also maintain current knowledge of credit regulations. They are sometimes expected to inspect billing for accuracy. Somewhat less frequently, loan counselors are also expected to supervise loan personnel.
Loan counselors sometimes are asked to inspect accounts to establish write-offs for collection agencies. and match students' needs and eligibility with available financial aid programs to furnish informed recommendations. And finally, they sometimes have to compare data on student aid applications with eligibility requirements of assistance programs.
Like many other jobs, loan counselors must have exceptional integrity and be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Portland include:
- Accountant. Analyze financial information and prepare financial reports to determine or maintain records of assets, liabilities, profit and loss, tax liability, or other financial activities within an organization.
- Auditor. Examine and analyze accounting records to determine financial status of establishment and prepare financial reports concerning operating procedures.
- Budget Analyst. Examine budget estimates for completeness, accuracy, and conformance with procedures and regulations. Analyze budgeting and accounting reports for the purpose of maintaining expenditure controls.
- Credit Analyst. Analyze current credit data and financial statements of individuals or firms to determine the degree of risk involved in extending credit or lending money. Prepare reports with this credit information for use in decision-making.
- Financial Analyst. Conduct quantitative analyses of information affecting investment programs of public or private institutions.
- Financial Examiner. Enforce or ensure compliance with laws and regulations governing financial and securities institutions and financial and real estate transactions. May examine, verify correctness of, or establish authenticity of records.
- Income Tax Advisor. Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses but do not have the background or responsibilities of an accredited or certified public accountant.
- Loan Officer. Evaluate, authorize, or recommend approval of commercial, real estate, or credit loans. Advise borrowers on financial status and methods of payments. Includes mortgage loan officers and agents, collection analysts, loan servicing officers, and loan underwriters.
- Personal Financial Planner. Advise clients on financial plans utilizing knowledge of tax and investment strategies, securities, and real estate. Duties include assessing clients' assets, liabilities, and financial objectives to establish investment strategies.
- Tax Examiner. Determine tax liability or collect taxes from individuals or business firms according to prescribed laws and regulations.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Loan Counselor Training
Saint Joseph's College of Maine - Standish, ME
Saint Joseph's College of Maine, 278 Whites Bridge Rd, Standish, ME 04084-5236. Saint Joseph's College of Maine is a small college located in Standish, Maine. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,771 students and an admission rate of 78%. Saint Joseph's College of Maine has a bachelor's degree program in Banking and Financial Support Services which graduated one student in 2008.
Certified Personal Banker: Applicable to financial services professionals who have completed the AIB Personal Banking Diploma and who function as personal bankers.
For more information, see the Institute of Certified Bankers website.
Certified Investment Management Analyst: The CIMA offers an intense educational experience focusing on asset allocation, manager search and selection, investment policy and performance measurement.
For more information, see the Investment Management Consultants Association website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Portland, Maine
Portland is situated in Cumberland County, Maine. It has a population of over 62,561, which has shrunk by 2.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Portland, 102, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Portland are priced at $164,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, twenty-three new homes were built in Portland, down from thirty-two the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Portland are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 19 minutes. More than 36.4% of Portland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.0%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Portland is 6.3%, which is less than Maine's average of 7.6%. About 14.1% of Portland's residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the state average.
The percentage of Portland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 40.4%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Mariners Church, Swedenborgian Church and Stroudwater Christian Church are among the churches located in Portland. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Church of Christ and the United Methodist Church.
Portland is home to the Cumberland Wharf and the Browns Wharf as well as Longfellow Square and Hadlock Field. Shopping centers in the area include Mill Creek Shopping Center, Monument Square Shopping Center and Portland East Shopping Center. Visitors to Portland can choose from Motel 6, Fairfield Inn Portland Airport and Ramada Limited Portland for temporary stays in the area.