I Passed!

Early this morning I went to Promissor to take my Loan Originator test.  Passing the LO exam is required by all loan originators who are employed by Mortgage Brokers prior to January 1, 2008.    I’ve passed my background check from the DFI and FBI and I’ve attended my two clock hour courses (ethics–which is required for the first year of licensing and reverse mortgages)…the test was the last step in retaining my license to be a Loan Originator.  I passed!

If Loan Originators (we go by many names:  mortgage consultant, mortgage planner, loan officer, mortgage specialist…etc) who work for a Mortgage Broker have not passed the 100 question exam by the January deadline, they will not be allowed to practice as a LO for a Mortgage Broker.   I’m betting we’ll see the LOs who do not want to take the exam or who did not pass the exam become employees at mortgage companies who are exempt from having licensed loan originators (mortgage company banks like WaMu, Chase, Wells Fargo, Countrywide; credit unions; consumer loan companies). 

As a Licensed Loan Originator, I am required to continue taking two classes per year approved by DFI in order to maintain my license. 

I would love to hear from a local bank Loan Originator/Loan Officer to hear in detail what they are required to do in order to maintain employment at Wells Fargo, Countrywide, Chase or Washington Mutual…I’m all ears!   


  1. Congrats! Course, we all knew you’d pass with flying colors.

    I’m going to start on my RE Broker’s license myself.

  2. Thanks, Ben! I’m glad to have it “behind me”. 🙂

  3. Bravo! …was there ever any doubt how you’d do?

    I’m going to add having passed the exam to my list of qualifications buyers should require from their mortgage originator (regardless of whether they work for a bank or not).

  4. Rhonda,
    congrats on passing. You weren’t worried were you? I take mine on Friday, so I’m a couple of days behind you.

    Do you have any idea who we contact to report all the mistakes in the study guide?

    Information from WAMB yesterday…only 1500 of the 15,800 LO’s in WA have taken the test so far. 90 days left for 14,000 people to take a test! That math doesn’t look too good.

  5. Mark, I’m guessing many LOs will either become employed at a mortgage bank, so they don’t have to comply with the state requirements of someone who can broker mortgages. And…with our current market conditions, I think many LOs will opt for a different career!

    I’m not sure who to contact regarding the errors. The errors in the report is what I was most concerned about…plus, there are some “answers” that may be technically correct but I don’t agree with (respa type stuff).

  6. Lee, thanks! If I were someone who worked as a LO for a mortgage bank, I would at the very least, take the exam and courses. I would not want a mortgage broker to have anything over me as a banker…but hey, that’s just me! 😉

  7. Congrats!!!

  8. Yay and Congratulations Rhonda!

  9. WAY TO GO!

  10. Thanks, Dustin, Deborah and Greg!

  11. In regards to your blog —- 9/26/2007

    That’s great you passed your mandatory test. What continuing mortgage education did you take prior to this requirement. If you have ever had the luxury of working for a bank you would know that compliance, ethics, security, etc… modules are required annually by the bank employees. We don’t wear these requirements as badges, rather we separate ourselves from the rest by demonstrating our knowledge. In addition, most of these employees continue to expand their knowledge with such certifications as CMPS. This is done for the sake of education rather than requirement. Of course, there are always employees that engage in education more so than others, but to try to distinguish yourself from the rest of the pack without truly knowing the facts tells me what you really know about the banking industry. I get your point….but really, can you actually believe that there are not well qualified employees with these institutions?

    You have not addressed the Banker/Broker scenario. So what’s your take on a Banker/Broker? You must realize that working with just a broker has far more limitations for the client vs. working for a Banker/Broker.

    We all know that there are bad LO’s just as there are bad attorneys, cops, doctors, CPA’s, etc…Reading through your website I see a lot of attacks towards the bad one’s in the industry. Of course every good LO feels this way. However, in my opinion to continue to harp on the bad to prove a point that you work differently is a balancing act that is razor sharp. To continue to point out the flaws in the industry you feed into the stereotype of mortgage brokers. Try illustrating your skills without the examples of what others have done wrong. People can figure that out for themselves that you are good at what you do without perpetuating our industries stereotypes. A more cohesive industry is a healthier one for all of us

  12. Cogger, my beef is that legislation is not the same for all loan originators. Our current structure is confusing for consumers when they have a complaint. Your comment is deserving in a post of it’s onw and I’ll respond to you via a separate posts.

    I’m not sure if you’re referring to the 2 post from the subprime lender. I was telling a different side of subprime-he’s almost a victim of the market (his employer) as well. It was not with any intent to say that I’m better than him. Our difference is that I do not work for a call center mortgage company.

    By banker/broker, are you referring to being a correspondent lender?

    Last, you state that you have modules set up as a banker…what specifically do you do as a banker to be allows you to originate mortgages per state/federal guidelines?

  13. I’ll start by saying that it is obvious that your experience, involvement with additional training and using mortgage service providers such as “The Mortgage Market Guide” makes you a competent loan officer. However, I have never worked around any LO’s that have any less training or access to the same services you mention. I think it is fair to say that the loan originators that participate in this industry as a career rather than a temporary job all have similar credentials.

    Bankers have been regulated by the feds. for decades. Not specifically to originate loans but as an industry. If you have ever spoken with any LO from WaMu, Wells, M & T, etc… you would know that their internal training programs are excellent. Of course their training may not be the same as what is currently required for brokers however this licensing is relatively new. For years bankers thought that brokers should have been better regulated and were considered to be the hacks in the industry. Obtaining a broker job required that you had a pulse. That side of the industry has stepped up their game by mandate. This came about because of the problems with that side of the industry. All things being equal I agree that a level playing field is best.

    Regarding Banker/Broker. Yes this refers to correspondent lending but also true bankers with full banking services You mention what if you work for a bank that is pulling product and you can not switch to another lender. (We will not get into switching at the last minute.) Not all banks, but several also allow loans to be brokered as wellsuch as the bank I worked for in the past. In addition, most recently many banks have withdrawn their products from the correspondent and broker market only to keep them in place for there own LO’s. Wells is a perfect example of this. In many cases this has given bankers the upper hand in product availability.

    My point is this – you can be licensed, self educated, etc… but that does not change how a lender may choose to sell or charge for their services. Licensing will not remedy this. That is why I feel it is ridiculous when you mention that some may look for safe haven within a banks walls. In my opinion misleading. Matter a fact the last bank I worked for we had to sign a contract that we could not originate more than 1 point. What broker can say that. Licensing and continuing education is great bench mark for the client to recognize but this alone does not protect them whether they are a banker or broker.

    This is not a personal attack rather a healthy debate. Your blog offers a great opportunity for thoughts to be shared and is a big commitment by you. Continued success to you and all those that work so hard in this industry.

  14. Cogger, welcome back! I do appreciate our “healthy debate” and do not consider this a personal attack what so ever and I hope you feel the same. You are only the second “banker” who has been willing to “debate” with me. I thank you–this is good info and no one person is ever 100% correct in my book.

    Re: “it is ridiculous when you mention that some may look for safe haven within a banks walls” I don’t recall saying this. Maybe you meant to say broker instead of bank and I would not agree with that statement either.

    I bet not all banks have the 1% limit on origination and your correct, most brokers do not either. When I attended the WAMB ethics course, one dirt bag bragged about making 5 points–I wanted to personally toss him out of the class myself which I’m sure he learned nothing from. We can only hope that he’s unemployeed due to the shrinking subprime market.

    I have many friends in the mortgage bank biz who are relentless at trying to sway me over to the mortgage bank side of the industry…I think the world of those guys…but just because a LO works for a bank mortgage company–it does not make them exempt from being a schmuck.

    One of the stories that I linked to in my new post for you is about on of the lenders you mention in your comment above. The bank LO did not tell the borrower that she had a prepayment penalty (700 plus credit scores–it was all about padding the LOs pocket). I discovered it on her TIL when her realtor asked me to review the GFE.

    Was you 1% limit what you could charge as an origination? As a correspondent lender, just like a bank (unlike a broker), we are not required to disclose what we’re paid on the back end as a YSP or SRP.

  15. Since typepad trackbacks seem non-existant…here’s my home made trackback:


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