So, you are a mortgage loan originator (MLO) and now you need to comply with a new federal law in order to stay compliant with the mortgage industry – the Secure and Fair Enforcement Mortgage Licensing Act (S.A.F.E.). This new law implies meeting certain requirements, like national and state licensing exams. And if you conduct MLO activity for multiple states, which is more likely than not, you will need to pass an exam for each state. Don’t stress – prepare to keep your career on track with these S.A.F.E. mortgage tips.
1. Register with the National Mortgage Loan System (NMLS) and receive your unique identification number. This is a good first step. You will need your unique identification number to conduct your MLO activity. However, you will also use this number to track your pre-licensing education and your successfully passed exams that lead to obtaining licensure. quiz
2. Research NMLS approved education providers. You will need to complete 20 hours of pre-licensure education in order to satisfy the national component of the S.A.F.E. act. And you can meet this requirement in two ways:
Traditional Classroom Setting: Attend a pre-licensing education course at a set location and time with other professionals in your field. The pros of choosing this method include access to a live instructor and learning in a group environment. This traditional method is familiar and might be the best fit for your learning style.
Online Course: Satisfy your mortgage pre-license education requirements from a computer, wherever you choose. The pros of this route include learning on your own schedule and at your own pace – that way you can focus on turning those leads into income, as opposed to spending precious time in a classroom setting. Many online courses may provide live support, just make sure you choose an approved NMLS education provider.
Once you decide whether a traditional classroom setting or an online course would best fit your learning style, go to the NMLS Web site and review the Master Course Catalog. It provides a comprehensive list of NMLS approved courses, plus the catalog is updated regularly.
3. Prepare for your S.A.F.E. Mortgage Exam and pass on your first try. Can you imagine having to take your national or state exam more than once? How about having to pay for each exam every time you need to take it again, meanwhile, needing to wait 30 days or more between failed test attempts? Plus, after a certain amount of failed exam attempts, you will need to wait a minimum of 60 days or more and you won’t be able to conduct any MLO activity.