Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS)

The Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System provides new Mortgage Brokers a system that simplifies and combines the application process for applying for a Mortgage Broker License within multiple states.



What is the NMLS?

Since its inception in 2003, the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS) has obtained commitments of more than 40 states, which will utilize the system by 2010. The NMLS has created a uniform licensing system for applicants interested in the residential mortgage business. By providing this system, improvements exist for the supervision of the industry, modernization of the licensing procedure for both mortgage companies and professionals alike, and augmentation of buyer protection. The goal to have all US States participate in the system provides protection to the licensees, as well as the consumers.

How Does the NMLS Work?

The Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS) is a secure web based system, which allows for quick and accurate applications, updates, or renewals of licensee requirements. It utilizes standard forms for all functions, which maintains uniformity among the states using the system. The main benefits for the State to utilize the NMLS process for mortgage broker licensing not only provides uniform license applications, but allows for electronic work cues, online communications, system notifications, and amendments. It allows the applicants to view, update, and make any changes to their license at almost any time. It allows the applicant to check the status of their application and license, make online payments for renewal or amendments, provide real-time online support, run reports, and view an applicants historical data.

The NMLS system allows for real time access through a secure web site 7 days a week and 362 days a year. The system went live on January 2, 2008 with seven (7) states participating initially including: Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New York, and Rhode Island. In July of 2008, seven (7) additional states joined the NMLS system including: Connecticut, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Washington.


In addition to state license and investigation fees, the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS) consists of three types of system charges. The first charge is the “Initial Set Up Fee” that ranges between $20.00 to $100.00, based on the application types, as follows:

Company Initial Fee (MU1) – $100.00
Branch Office Initial Fee (MU3) – $20.00
Loan Officer Initial Fee (MU4) – $30.00

The second charge is the “Annual Processing Fee” which will be charged upon license renewal of renewal of the license, as follows:

Company Annual Fee (MU1) – $100.00
Branch Office Annual Fee (MU3) – $20.00
Loan Officer Annual Fee (MU4) – $30.00

The third charge is the Loan Officer Sponsorship Transfer Fee, which only applies to the Loan Officer. This charge is $30.00 for each Loan Officer request. This fee is charged upon NMLS establishing an association with a Loan Officer and sponsorship requests for the prospective licenses.

The long term goal of the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS) will be to establish all US States within the system and require the adoption by Mortgage Industry applicants to further streamline usage of the national system.

Eric is the Chief Marketing Officer of JW Surety Bonds. With years of experience in the surety industry, he is also a contributing author to the surety bond blog. He has held a range of different roles within the surety industry, from agent assistant to bond issuer, which gives him a unique insider perspective on surety related topics.


Mortgage License

I think the NMLS is a giant step toward making the system better, but I really like the picture in this blog. It truly is just a computer database at this point.

Most people actually consider the NMLS to be an extra burden at this point. I’m hoping the states will work alongside the NMLS to reduce the licensing burden, especially for companies that are licensed in multiple states.

Mj Miller

Are Mortgage Broker Licensing set up for Colorado? If so how much?How long will it take to receive the licensing? Please respond soon. I run a referral loan placement service, mortgage request are included, and I understand I should be licensed.


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