Sick of the Mortgage Business

A woman seeks advice about how to change career paths.

Your Career Coach

Mortgages, Smortgages

Dear Michele,

I have been a mortgage underwriter for over 25 years, and I just recently lost my job. I desperately wish to get out of the mortgage business but feel I’m up against too many roadblocks, such as my lack of experience in any other field. I know the best way to gain necessary experience is through networking, yet I haven’t had much luck with that either. I feel I have a lot to offer but I’m not big on selling myself, and the efforts I’ve made don’t ever seem to pan out. Recruiters just look for someone with prior knowledge; they don’t know how to think out of the box. Help!

— S-T-U-C-K

Dear S-T-U-C-K,

Wish I’d known you when I tried to refi a few months ago … anyway. Here’s the deal — you have specialized knowledge in a really difficult area: Mortgages. I know it’s difficult and stressful work, but what kind of organization would benefit from all of your 25 years of experience? Is there a place where what you know allows you to contribute? Why, yes, there is! Credit counseling. Funds that buy mortgages. Private investors who make mortgages. Credit unions. How about community colleges or high schools? They need professors and teachers who teach this kind of stuff to students.

Any time you’re stuck, remember this: Focus on the tools you already have and figure out how to best use them. Then, voila! You’ll find a path through and you’ll no longer be stuck. Good luck.

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