Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Continuing education

About half of the states require continuing education for loan officers, branch managers and company principals after you get your license. The number of hours varies by state. The type of education also is dictated by each state's regulations.

Most of the states permit online coursework. This is very convenient for those who need the continuing education hours for a state outside their home state. You sign up, take the coursework, and then pass a test to show that you paid attention to the coursework. You must make sure you get your certificate from the continuing education provider to show that you completed the courses.

A few of the states require that you attend in-classroom education which means you need to travel if this is not your home state. Other states require that you use only approved providers.

The important thing to remember about the continuing education requirement is to complete it in a timely manner. Some states require that it be completed during a calendar year and other states permit you to take your continuing education anytime before you need to renew a license or to submit an annual report. For mortgage brokers who are licensed in many states this means being very organized about when to take the continuing education for each state.

If you don't take the continuing education, you might not get your license renewed - a very expensive lesson in compliance.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Need a mortgage license solution?

I've been writing about topics that come up frequently in my practice as an attorney to mortgage brokers and lenders. But I'd love some ideas from my readers. If anyone has a topic they would like to see addressed in my blog or has a question that they need an answer to, please send me an email to and I can write about it here.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Timing and Your License Application

One of my clients just received his Pennsylvania licenses last week. He has separate licenses for 1st and 2nd mortgages and a main Pennsylvania office and a branch office in another state where his company is headquartered. This week, he received the paperwork for his renewal licenses. He asked me if he needed to bother with a renewal since he just had received his licenses. Unfortunately, I had to tell him that his licenses would expire on June 30th and if he didn't renew, he would not have any Pennsylvania licenses when they expired.

No one has any control over how long it will take the banking departments to review and approve a license application. Sometimes, you get lucky and your new license is approved just after all the renewals were processed. So your license is good for the maximum number of months. Or you've applied in one of the states, like California or Virginia, where the licenses never expire. But, in most states, you can only hope that the approval will be given long before the license period runs out before you have to renew.

I also caution my clients not to submit license applications during renewal season (which varies by state). When it is renewal season, most of the reviewers are concentrating on the renewal applications and the new applications sit unnoticed. I urge them to wait a few weeks so that the application and license fees are still in their bank accounts, not in the Banking Department accounts, just gathering interest for someone else.

Check with a licensing expert before you make a timing mistake.