Kari moved to the valley two weeks after graduating from the University of Wisconsin to work for the National Park Service. Kari enjoyed working at Rocky Mountain National Park and driving snowcat tours at Winter Park Resort for her first few years in Grand County. She planned on going back to school to earn her Master’s Degree in Conservation Biology, but fell in love with the valley and decided to stay. In 2004, Kari got her first banking job at Community First National Bank as a part-time teller. She has worked in banking ever since and is currently an Assistant Vice President and Loan Officer at Grand Mountain Bank.
Kari came to Grand County with her college sweetheart. They got married and have two beautiful daughters. They enjoy raising their family in this great community and love all the opportunities there are for outdoor activities. They also like the proximity to Denver so they can experience city culture and entertainment.
What does a Loan Officer do?
As community bankers, we meet with individuals who have loan requests and help them with the application process. We underwrite and present our loans on a weekly basis for approval by our local loan committee. We work with our customers through the closing and continued servicing of the loan. We also provide credit counseling.
Grand Mountain Bank offers conventional mortgage products as well as in-house or portfolio loans. We can finance land purchases, construction projects, purchases and refinances of primary, secondary and investment properties. We also offer commercial loans including business lines of credit, commercial real estate and equipment financing. There is not much that we can’t help a customer with!
Sometimes I get referrals to meet with first time home buyers. I enjoy visiting with them and walking them through the process. It can be a little overwhelming for them at times, especially in Grand County, as there are so many unique properties and borrowers with seasonal employment. I’m here to guide them towards taking the best steps to qualify.
We also work with a lot of second home owners, self-employed borrowers and customers with retirement or other income sources that are not as cut and dried as W2 wages. I’ve always enjoyed structuring loans to create options that will work for them.
Sometimes, borrowers have an existing banking relationship in Denver or in another state, but they find that because their desired property offers time shares or has front desk services, their current lender cannot provide financing. We frequently receive last minute phone calls and are usually able to step in and lend on the collateral in-house.
What is your favorite part of your job?
I love meeting with people. I used to work in the tourism industry and enjoyed interacting with the public. A great perk about working here is that I get to work with locals, too. I can help them buy or build a home or grow their business, which in turn helps them establish roots in the community.
What makes Grand Mountain Bank stand out?
We are the only locally based and operated bank in Grand County. Our local decision making allows us the flexibility to offer loan products and services to meet the needs of our customers. We are also locally focused on our community from Kremmling to Winter Park. We live here and are familiar with the different types of properties and their locations. We offer the same variety of products and services as other banks but with personalized service. When you call the Bank, you will be greeted by an individual not an automated message. Though financing involves numbers and documentation, we pride ourselves in making excellent customer service our top priority.
What are some things people don’t know about you?
I used to be a Park Ranger and snow cat driver. In high school, I competed in show choir and pom poms/dance at a state and national level. I’ve bungee jumped off a gondola and have been paragliding in Switzerland.
Find out what Kari or one of our other local lenders can do for you! Contact us today and let’s chat!