If you are interested in pursuing a career in the real estate industry, you may consider obtaining your mortgage broker license. Unlike a traditional loan officer, a mortgage broker does not work for any particular lending agent, but instead acts as a mediator between the buyer and the lender, working on behalf of an individual, bank, or other financial institution to find the ideal loan for an applicant's needs. A mortgage broker must therefore have extensive knowledge of the many types of loan options available and understand which loan works best for their clients. In many areas, you must have training and pass a licensing exam before you legally authorized to work as a mortgage broker.
Although you usually do not need a college degree to obtain your mortgage broker license, in most places you must be at least 18 years of age to qualify. The position also requires excellent communication skills, the ability to work with people from all backgrounds, and above-average mathematical skills. In addition, you should also have a clean criminal record, as many areas require an extensive background check before issuing a mortgage broker license. As far as educational requirements go, most places require an average of 24 hours of instruction or on-the-job training. If required, you can most likely sign up for pre-licensing classes at a local college or online university.
After you have completed the required educational training, you have to pass a written exam to prove that you understand your area's lending laws. Generally, the exam is multiple choice, and covers topics such as basic mortgage provisions, common industry abbreviations, and underwriting guidelines, as well as questions related to mortgage lending forms and the loan origination process. Once you have passed this exam, you will need to complete a detailed mortgage broker license application and pay an application fee. In addition to basic personal information, the application also requires information regarding your financial and credit history, prior legal issues, and qualifications.
Once your application is approved, you must then post a surety bond. Also known as a mortgage broker bond, a surety bond is a form of insurance that provides monetary compensation to lenders if you fail to meet the terms of a contract and a claim is filed against you. You must also agree to work for a business licensed by your government, follow a code of ethics, and follow any other miscellaneous requirements such as displaying your mortgage broker license, completing other educational courses, and renewing your license on a regular basis. After you've agreed to these conditions, you’re ready to begin your career as a mortgage broker.