To become a mortgage loan originator, you may already know that you’re required to be licensed through the NMLS system, per the passage of the Safe and Fair Enforcement of Mortgage Licensing Act of 2008 (or the “S.A.F.E. Act”).
What you may not know is how exactly to obtain your NMLS unique identifier to achieve state mortgage licensure. The process is fairly straightforward, but to assist you we’ve compiled this list of steps to help you move through the process with ease.
1. Print Out Your Checklist
The requirements differ from state to state.
Go to the State Licensing Requirements page on the NMLS Resource Center and click on the state or states where you want to get licensed.
Once there, print out the appropriate checklist for the state and follow the instructions. You’ll need to start gathering any and all documentation to send to the state agency once you submit your application through NMLS. The timing to submit required documentation is crucial so be prepared! Helpful hint – each state’s contact information is listed on their checklists.
2. Connect with Your Company
Since NMLS is an official system of record with your state regulator, it’s crucial that you coordinate your use of the system with your employer.
Additionally, you’ll want to consider who will be paying for your mortgage license application – you or your company. The application can be started by either you or your company but whoever actually submits the application to the regulators will be responsible for payment.
Rely on your company for guidance in this matter.
3. Create An Account
It’s finally time to create a NMLS account. Go to the Request an Account page on the NMLS Resource Center.
Select “Individual” upon the prompt and follow the instructions. You’ll be assigned a NMLS ID Number as soon as the account has been created, however that number does not mean you’re licensed just yet. Once you’re in fact licensed, the number you’re assigned can be used by consumers, lenders, and other companies to verify that you’re indeed authorized to conduct mortgage licensing business.
4. Log in and Complete/Review Your Record
You’re ready to log into NMLS.
Once you’ve been assigned an NMLS ID Number, the SAFE testing and education requirements outlined on the checklist should be satisfied next. The SAFE tests can be paid for and scheduled through your NMLS account by either you or your company, while education is paid for and scheduled externally from the system.
If your company will be paying for your testing and/or application, you’ll want to grant your company access to your account. The company then has the ability to pay for and schedule any tests or complete the application and pay on your behalf.
If you’re responsible for completing your application, you’ll need to login to NMLS, select Individual Form (MU4), identify the jurisdictions you’d like to be licensed in, and complete the necessary sections of the form (this is your application).
Payment will be required when the application is submitted electronically to the state.
Simple instructions and payment options can be found on the NMLS website.
5. Don’t Lose Your User ID and Password!
You’ll always need these each time you want to access NMLS to update your record, change companies or enroll in a test.
At the very least, you’ll need to know it once per year when it comes time to renew your license.
Start Your New Career as a Mortgage Loan Originator Today!
Don’t worry, as we said the process is straightforward. Even if you do have some problems navigating your way through the process, there are many helpful resources at the NMLS website to guide you through the process.
If you have any other questions about the many benefits of being a mortgage loan originator, feel free to contact MLG! We’re your resource for mortgage licensing guidance!
The Mortgage Licensing Group, Inc. is a full-service mortgage licensing firm headquartered in Southern California that is recognized throughout the industry as an experienced and reliable service provider. Established in 2006, our company has been on the forefront of the ever-changing rules and regulations, helping alleviate the often daunting task of meeting the diverse state licensing requirements for our clientele.