Record-breaking loan officer Shant Banosian reveals formula for success

Mortgage expert who "fell into" job recently reached $5 billion milestone

Record-breaking loan officer Shant Banosian reveals formula for success

Boston-based LO Shant Banosian (pictured) breaks mortgage records at a rate that would make former world-beating Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt nod in admiration.

As Guaranteed Rate’s number one originator for the past six years, he recently brought his career volume to more than $5 billion in loans after funding $1 billion for the second consecutive year - a record he achieved in less than six months.

Banosian’s new milestone prompted Guaranteed Rate’s president and CEO Victor Ciardelli to praise his high-flying LO for his “amazing dedication and true commitment.”

Banosian’s success is all the more remarkable, given that he “kind of fell” into the mortgage industry by chance more than a decade ago. He said: “I was fresh out of college and a friend of mine was doing this. I thought it sounded fun. Once I got involved, it really was fulfilling because it was competitive and there was a sales aspect to it.”

He said his achievements were due to working with “an incredible team” and “closing fastest in the industry”, despite competing in an extremely fierce housing market.

He said: “The mortgage process can be very cumbersome, especially after what happened in the financial and housing crisis, 10 to 15 years ago. It got very difficult, so our goal is to simplify and utilise technology to make it more transparent and efficient.”

Maintaining close relationships with past clients and leveraging word-of-mouth referrals are also crucial ingredients in his recipe for success, he added.

“We’re trying to make sure all our previous clients are aware of what’s going on in the market and how they can take advantage of the current interest rate environment, whether it’s to refinance and save themselves money, take cash out to do home improvement projects, or whatever their needs and goals may be.”

With more than 3,550 loans under his belt, the formula appears to be working, as 95% of Banosian’s clients reportedly said they would use him again. “We focus on something called Net Promoter Score. Every client gives us a survey and a review after we do a transaction, and the better that is, the more likely they are to refer us to other people,” he said.

Depending on who you talk to, it’s either a booming market or an industry facing challenging times. Given Banosian’s record, questions over low inventory, high construction costs and property prices appear redundant, but he said he recognised the difficulties other LO’s faced.

“I’d say it’s booming and it’s tight at the same time,” he said. “There is the lowest inventory on record, going back to the early 80s. However, there are more transactions happening because of the speed (of the process), both on the mortgage side and the real estate side - everything’s happening faster.”

He sounded an ominous warning to competitors by predicting he will exceed this year’s volume of business compared to 2020. He has also set his sights on expanding to the rest of the country beyond Massachusetts and the North East, where he’s done most of his business to date.

“If there’s one thing the pandemic’s taught us is that you can do business anywhere, so we’ve been doing purchases and refinances in all 50 states,” he said. “That’s going to be our next evolution - being a national lender as opposed to a regional or local lender.”

Exhaustive work schedule permitting, Banosian still finds the time to engage in other activities. Aside from his family, he cites his philanthropic work and involvement with charities and community associations as a major focus in life.  

He said: “It’s very important that we give back to those that are less fortunate, I feel it’s our responsibility to give back to the communities that help us.”