Denise Heldman, Home Lending Officer
Ling Liang, Home Lending Officer
Jesse Lokken, Home Lending Officer
With nearly a half century of combined experience, Denise Heldman, Ling Liang, and Jesse Lokken take pride knowing their hard work pays off when clients close a loan to purchase a home or save money by refinancing. Their understanding of home finance allows them to tailor products to the individual needs of homebuyers and homeowners, and makes this trio of Citibank home lending officers stand out among mortgage professionals.
Denise Heldman previously enjoyed a career as a closer at an Indiana-based title company, but made the switch to loan origination after experience and her interactions with Realtors helped her better understand the mechanics of the market. “I realized I wanted to work more closely on the homebuying side of the business while putting my finance skills to excellent use,” Heldman says, “so a career in lending was the perfect fit.” After 18 years in the field, Heldman specializes in jumbo mortgages and works with a range of clients, from first-time to luxury buyers. All th while, her uncompromising commitment to providing outstanding service remains consistent regardless of the borrower’s budget. “It does not matter who – I make my clients feel special,” she explains. “I pick up when they call and watch their loan carefully from start to finish. I make certain everything progresses smoothly.” That is why so many of her clients come from referrals. “The friendships I’ve formed over the years are invaluable. Knowing I played a role in helping people buy or refinance a home is rewarding, and that’s also true when family and friends ask me to help them do the same. That is why I love what I do!”
A 16-year industry veteran, Ling Liang echoes that sentiment. “Whether it’s the smile I see on people’s faces or the thank-you note I receive after closing, I know I’m making a difference in people’s lives, and that’s how I define success,” she says. Ling began her Citibank career as a teller and later worked as a personal banker, but found herself drawn to mortgage lending because of her passion to help others. She is particularly skilled in explaining the lending process and educating people on what is required to qualify for a mortgage, including recent immigrants. In fact, she is a lender often recommended in the Chinatown community thanks to her ability to inform people about buying and refinancing their home. “I view my role as a financial professional who builds trust with the people relying on my knowledge,” she says. “I take extra time to explain the ‘why’ behind the ‘what,’ so they have a true understanding of their finances and my role in the transaction from application to closing.” Her stellar service has earned Ling recognition as one of her unit’s top loan officers nationally, as well as Citibank’s Leaders in Excellence honor nine out of the past 10 years for placing among its top producers in the U.S. An avid traveler and badminton player, Ling gives back to her community as a voluntary tax preparer for an area nonprofit.
Like his colleagues, Jesse Lokken knows what he does is life-changing for the people he serves. “Home is where you raise your family and live life, so helping someone achieve ownership allows me to have a tremendous impact and gives me great joy,” he says. He is particularly adept at tracking housing and economic trends to ensure he can best position his clients to achieve their real estate goals. Throughout the process, Lokken aims to keep his approach as simple as possible. “I make certain I understand what clients want to achieve, ensure they’re comfortable financially with the goals they’ve set and then devise a plan that will help them turn those goals into reality,” he explains. “Some goals are more long term than short term, but I always make certain I answer the various kinds of questions clients may have so we agree about how and why we’re moving forward with the strategy we’ve developed.” When he is not working one-on-one with clients, Lokken spends time with his wife and sons, which include watching his six-year-old’s baseball games, enjoying the lake, and playing ice hockey. “Working hard gives me the opportunity to appreciate the time I have with my family,” he says, “Our home is central to our quality time together, so my desire is to make that possible for my clients, too.”
Thanks to The Residences at New City for letting us use their beautiful location for our photo shoots.