Mortgage Brokers and Lenders Licensing: Understanding the Basics

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When you’re looking to buy a house, one of the first things you’ll need to do is secure a mortgage. But before you can do that, you’ll need to work with a licensed mortgage broker or lender. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at what it means to be licensed in the mortgage industry.

What is a Mortgage Broker?

A mortgage broker is a middleman who connects borrowers with lenders. They work with a variety of lenders to find the best mortgage rates and terms for their clients. Mortgage brokers can be independent or work for a larger company. In either case, they must be licensed in order to legally operate in the industry.

What is a Mortgage Lender?

A mortgage lender is a financial institution that provides loans to borrowers to purchase a home or other real estate. Lenders can be banks, credit unions, or other types of financial institutions. Like mortgage brokers, lenders must be licensed in order to operate legally.

Why is Licensing Important?

Licensing is important in the mortgage industry to protect consumers from fraud and other illegal activities. When a mortgage broker or lender is licensed, it means they have met certain requirements and standards set forth by the state in which they operate. This includes passing a background check, completing education and training, and meeting other requirements.

How Do Mortgage Brokers and Lenders Get Licensed?

The process of getting licensed as a mortgage broker or lender varies by state. Generally speaking, however, it involves the following steps:

  • Completing pre-licensing education and training
  • Passing a licensing exam
  • Submitting an application to the state
  • Providing proof of financial responsibility
  • Passing a background check

What Happens if a Mortgage Broker or Lender is Not Licensed?

If a mortgage broker or lender operates without a license, they can face serious consequences. This can include fines, legal action, and even jail time in some cases. Additionally, consumers who work with unlicensed brokers or lenders may be at risk of fraud or other illegal activities.

How Can You Verify a Mortgage Broker or Lender’s License?

If you’re working with a mortgage broker or lender, it’s important to verify that they are licensed. You can typically do this by checking with the state’s licensing board or department of financial institutions. Many states also have online databases that allow you to search for licensed brokers and lenders.


Working with a licensed mortgage broker or lender is an important part of the home buying process. Licensing helps to ensure that consumers are protected from fraud and other illegal activities. If you’re in the market for a mortgage, be sure to work with a licensed professional and verify their license before proceeding.