17 Lending Specialist Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a lending specialist, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

Lending specialists are responsible for processing loan applications, disbursing funds, and ensuring that loan repayments are made on time. They work in banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions.

If you’re looking for a job as a lending specialist, you may be asked to interview for the position. During the interview, the interviewer will ask you questions about your experience, education, and skills. They will also ask you about your knowledge of lending products and services and your ability to provide excellent customer service.

To help you prepare for your interview, we have put together a list of sample lending specialist interview questions and answers.

Are you familiar with the types of loans that our company offers?

This question can help the interviewer determine whether you have done your research on the company and its products. It is important to thoroughly read through a company’s website or any other information they provide about their loans before an interview so that you are prepared to answer questions like this one.

Example: “I am familiar with all of the types of loans that your company offers, including home equity loans, personal loans and auto loans. I also understand that your company has recently added new loan options for consumers who need them. I think it’s great that your company continues to expand its offerings to meet consumer needs.”

What are some of the most important qualities for a lending specialist?

Interviewers may ask this question to learn more about your personality and how you would fit in with their team. They want to know that you have the skills, knowledge and attitude needed for success as a lending specialist. When preparing for an interview, think about what makes you successful at work. Try to identify qualities that helped you achieve those goals.

Example: “I believe some of the most important qualities for a lending specialist are patience and organization. I find that many clients come into our office feeling nervous or overwhelmed. It’s my job to help them feel comfortable and confident in the process. To do so, I try to be friendly and helpful while also remaining organized and efficient. This helps me answer questions quickly and efficiently, which can make the client feel better.”

How would you build trust with a new client?

Trust is an important part of the lending process. The interviewer may ask this question to assess your ability to build trust with clients and help them feel comfortable working with you. Use examples from previous experiences where you helped a client feel more confident in their decision to work with you or your company.

Example: “I find that establishing a personal connection with my clients helps me gain their trust. I try to learn as much about them as possible, including what they do for fun, their favorite hobbies and even their family life. This allows me to connect with them on a deeper level and show them that I care about their overall well-being. It also makes it easier for me to understand their financial situation and provide solutions that meet their unique needs.”

What is your experience with underwriting loans?

This question can help the interviewer determine your experience level and how you might fit into their company. If you have no experience with underwriting loans, consider describing a similar process that you’ve done in the past.

Example: “I’ve worked as an assistant to a lending specialist for two years now. In this role, I helped my manager review loan applications and complete all necessary paperwork. My manager also taught me how to use the software they used to track information about each applicant’s credit history. This knowledge has been helpful when working on my own projects.”

Provide an example of a time when you provided excellent customer service.

Customer service is an important skill for lending specialists. Interviewers ask this question to learn more about your customer service skills and how you apply them in a work environment. When answering, think of a time when you helped a client solve a problem or find the information they needed.

Example: “I once had a client who was looking for a loan with a low interest rate. I spent some time researching different loans that met their criteria and found one that would be perfect for them. The client was so happy with my help that they referred me to two other people who were also looking for a new loan.”

If a client has a complaint, how would you handle it?

Interviewers may ask this question to assess your customer service skills. They want to know how you would handle a challenging situation and whether you have the interpersonal skills to diffuse it. In your answer, demonstrate that you value customers’ opinions and are willing to take steps to resolve their concerns.

Example: “If a client has a complaint, I first listen to what they have to say and try to understand their perspective. Then, I apologize for any inconvenience and offer them a solution. If there is something we can do to make things right, I will work with my manager or other colleagues to find a suitable resolution. For example, if a client was unhappy with the interest rate on their loan, I might be able to lower it.”

What would you do if you discovered a mistake you made caused a client to default on their loan?

This question can help the interviewer determine how you respond to mistakes and learn from them. Use your answer to show that you are willing to take responsibility for your actions, apologize and make amends when necessary.

Example: “If I discovered a mistake I made caused a client to default on their loan, I would immediately contact them to let them know what happened. Then, I would work with my manager to find a solution to fix the problem. If it was within my power to do so, I would try to get the client back into good standing by extending the terms of their loan or offering other solutions. If not, I would offer an apology and explain why I couldn’t help.”

How well do you handle stress?

Working in a financial institution can be stressful. Interviewers ask this question to make sure you have the ability to handle stress and remain calm when working with clients who may be upset or angry. In your answer, explain how you manage stress and provide an example of a time you did so successfully.

Example: “I am able to handle stress well because I know that it’s important to stay calm and focused during challenging situations. When working as a lending specialist at my previous job, I had a client who was very upset about their credit score. They were worried they would not be approved for a loan. I took a few minutes to listen to them and understand why they were so stressed. Then, I explained our company policy on credit scores and what we could do to help them.”

Do you enjoy learning about new financial products and trends?

This question can help the interviewer determine if you are a good fit for their company. They want to know that you enjoy learning about new products and trends in the industry, so they can see how you will adapt to changes at work. Use your answer to show that you have an interest in financial news and developments.

Example: “I love keeping up with current events in the lending world. I subscribe to several newsletters and blogs that provide information on new products and services. I also like to read articles from other publications to learn more about what’s happening in the industry. I find it interesting to see how different companies are adapting to change.”

When is it appropriate to refer a client to another lending institution?

Interviewers may ask this question to assess your customer service skills and determine whether you can handle difficult situations. In your answer, explain how you would approach the situation with a client who is upset about not getting approved for a loan.

Example: “If I feel that another lending institution could offer my client a better experience or more favorable terms, I would refer them immediately. However, if I think we can work out an agreement, I will try to find ways to make the loan possible. For example, I might suggest a different repayment plan or lower interest rate. If they are still unhappy, I will be honest but also direct them to someone else.”

We want to ensure our clients feel comfortable discussing their finances with us. How would you build trust with a new client?

Interviewers ask this question to see if you have experience working with clients who are uncomfortable discussing their finances. Use your answer to highlight a specific strategy or process that you use to build trust and rapport with new clients.

Example: “I find that the best way to build trust is by listening carefully to what my client has to say. I make sure to take notes during our meetings so I can refer back to them later, but I also try to remember key points they mention so I can reference them when we speak again. This helps me feel more like a friend than a business associate, which makes it easier for my clients to open up about their financial situation.”

Describe your process for verifying a client’s income and assets.

This question is an opportunity to show your interviewer that you have the skills and knowledge necessary to perform this important task. Use examples from previous work experience or school projects to demonstrate how you would complete this process.

Example: “I start by asking for a copy of their most recent tax return, which I verify with the IRS. Next, I ask for copies of any other income documents, such as 1099s, W-2s and investment statements. Then, I request proof of assets, like bank statements, brokerage account statements and retirement fund statements. Finally, I compare all of these documents against each other to ensure they match up.”

What makes you stand out from other candidates for this position?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your qualifications and how you can contribute to their company. Before your interview, make a list of the skills and experiences that qualify you for this role. Focus on what makes you unique from other candidates and highlight any transferable skills or certifications you have.

Example: “I am passionate about helping people find loans that work for them. I also understand that every client is different, so I’m committed to finding solutions that meet their needs. In my previous position, I helped clients with all kinds of financial situations, including those who were self-employed, had low credit scores and needed debt consolidation loans. This experience has given me valuable insight into the lending process.”

Which lending software do you prefer to use?

This question can help the interviewer determine your level of experience with a variety of lending software. Your answer should include which software you’re familiar with and why, as well as any other software that you’d like to learn more about.

Example: “I’ve used several different types of lending software in my previous positions, including Lending Tree, Prosper Marketplace and Zillow Mortgage Marketplace. I prefer using Lending Tree because it’s easy to use and has many useful features for both borrowers and lenders. For example, I find its automated underwriting system very helpful when reviewing loan applications.”

What do you think is the most important aspect of customer service for a lending specialist?

Interviewers may ask this question to see how you prioritize your work and what skills you use to provide excellent customer service. When answering, consider which aspects of lending specialist work are most important to you and explain why they’re important.

Example: “I think the most important aspect of lending specialist customer service is being able to communicate clearly with customers. I always make sure that my communication with clients is clear and concise so that they understand all information I’m providing them. This helps me avoid misunderstandings or confusion about loan requirements and allows me to help clients more efficiently.”

How often should you update a client’s file?

This question can help the interviewer determine how you prioritize your work and ensure that clients receive timely information. Your answer should show that you understand the importance of keeping client files up to date and accurate.

Example: “I update a client’s file every time I communicate with them, whether it is by phone or email. This ensures that they have all the most recent information about their loan application. If there are any changes to the status of their application, I make sure to inform them as soon as possible so they know what to expect.”

There is a new law that impacts how you can approve loans. How would you update your process?

This question is a great way to test your knowledge of current laws and regulations. It also shows the interviewer how you would adapt to change in your work environment. Use examples from past experience or explain what steps you would take to learn about this new law and update your process accordingly.

Example: “I recently worked with a client who was looking for a loan that required me to follow certain lending guidelines. I researched the law, which stated that I could not approve loans if they were more than five years old. This meant that I had to find another lender who offered loans within that time frame. The client ended up getting their loan, but it took some extra research on my part.”


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