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Pennsylvania Mortgage Broker License: Step-by-Step Guide

In Pennsylvania, anyone engaged in the mortgage loan business, whether an entity or individual, must obtain a license at the state level. The mortgage licenses are regulated and issued by Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities.

The mortgage license application process is handled by the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS). NMLS allows mortgage companies and loan originators to apply, update or renew a license online.

Types of Mortgage Licenses in Pennsylvania

The state of Pennsylvania has three main state license types: Company, Branch, and Individual. Each license type depends on the work you are going to perform.

In this guide, we’ll cover the most common licenses only. You can review the full list on the NMLS website.

Most Common Company Licenses

  • Mortgage Broker License - allows entities to negotiate and place first and/or secondary mortgage loans (directly or indirectly).
  • Mortgage Lender License - required of entities that originate and close first and/or secondary mortgage loans with their own funds.
  • Mortgage Loan Correspondent License - required of entities that originate and close mortgage loans with wholesale table funders or other funding sources.

Most Common Individual Licenses

  • Mortgage Originator License - allows individuals to take mortgage loan applications and/or negotiate the terms of the mortgage loans.

Pennsylvania State Requirements

All license applications must be submitted via NMLS. Please note that some agency-specific documentation, such as the original surety bond, must be mailed directly to the Department at The Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities, Non-Depository Licensing Office, 17N 2nd Street, Ste 1300, Harrisburg, PA 17101-2290.

For additional assistance and information regarding the license requirements, you may contact the Department at (717) 787-3717 or [email protected].

For NMLS-related questions, please contact their call center at (855) 665-7123.

Education and Exams

In Pennsylvania, passing an exam is obligatory for some license types. To obtain a Mortgage Broker, Lender or Loan Correspondent license, at least one company officer must complete a course and pass a test . All Mortgage Originator license applicants are required to complete an education course and pass an examination.

Exams for Company Licenses

  • Mortgage Broker, Mortgage Lender and Mortgage Loan Correspondent Licenses - To obtain any of these company licenses at least one officer, assigned to the principal place of business and listed as a direct owner or executive officer, must complete a pre-licensure course and pass a test.

    The education course should be NMLS-approved and be at least 20 hours long. The course must include 3 hours of Pennsylvania law. For further information, as well as a list of approved providers, please visit the NMLS Education page.

    After completing the education course, applicants can enroll for the test and pay the applicable fees in NMLS. An exam date can be scheduled via NMLS profile or by contacting the exam administrator Prometric at (877) 671-6657.

    Additional information regarding test enrollment and preparation can be found on the NMLS testing page.

Exams for Individual Licenses

  • Mortgage Originator License - To obtain an individual mortgage license, applicants are required to complete an NMLS-approved pre-licensure education course of at least 20 hours. The course must include 3 hours of Pennsylvania law. For additional information, as well as a list of approved providers, you may visit the NMLS Education page.

    Upon completion of the education course, you can enroll for the test and pay the fee on NMLS. You can schedule an exam date via your NMLS profile or by contacting the exam administrator Prometric at (877) 671-6657.

    Additional information on how to schedule and take the Mortgage Loan Originator test can be found on the NMLS testing page.

PA Mortgage Broker Bonds

Bonds for Company Licenses

  • Mortgage Broker License - All Mortgage Broker applicants who accept advance fees , are required to upload and mail a bond. The amount depends on the amount of PA mortgage loans originated by the applicant in 1 calendar year .
    • $50,000 surety bond for 0 - $14,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $75,000 surety bond for $15,000,000 - $29,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $100,000 surety bond for $30,000,000 - $49,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $150,000 surety bond if the amount of loan originations exceeds $50,000,000.

    Note that applicants who (will) collect advance fees are required to provide a $100,000 Penal Bond.

  • Mortgage Lender License - All applicants must furnish a surety bond. The amount of that bond depends on the mortgage loans originated by the applicant in 1 calendar year .
    • $100,000 surety bond for 0 - $29,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $200,000 surety bond for $30,000,000 - $99,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $300,000 surety bond for $100,000,000 - $249,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $500,000 if the loan origination amount is above $250,000,000.
  • Mortgage Loan Correspondent License - Applicants are required to submit a surety bond. The amount of that bond depends on the mortgage loans originated by the applicant in 1 calendar year.
    • $100,000 surety bond for 0 - $29,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $200,000 surety bond for $30,000,000 - $99,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $300,000 surety bond for $100,000,000 - $249,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $500,000 if the loan origination amount exceeds $250,000,000.

Bonds for Individual Licenses

  • Mortgage Originator License - Unless covered under employer’s bond, applicants must furnish an individual mortgage originator surety bond. The bond amount is based on the mortgage loans originated by the applicant in 1 calendar year.
    • $25,000 surety bond for 0 - $7,500,000 in originated loans.
    • $50,000 surety bond for $7,500,000 - $14,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $75,000 surety bond for $15,000,000 - $29,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $100,000 surety bond for $30,000,000 - $49,999,999.99 in originated loans.
    • $150,000 surety bond if the amount is more than $50,000,000.

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Licensing Fees

Fees for Company Licenses

All fees are non-refundable and must be paid through NMLS.

  • Mortgage Broker License
    • $1,000 license costs.
    • $100 NMLS processing fee.
    • $15 credit report fee.
    • $100 exam fee.
  • Mortgage Lender License
    • $1,500 license costs.
    • $100 NMLS processing fee.
    • $15 credit report fee.
    • $100 exam fee.
  • Mortgage Loan Correspondent License
    • $1,500 license costs.
    • $100 NMLS processing fee.
    • $15 credit report fee.
    • $100 exam fee.

Fees for Individual Licenses

  • Mortgage Originator License
    • $200 license costs.
    • $30 NMLS processing fee.
    • $15 credit report fee.
    • $36.25 background check.
    • $100 exam fee.

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