What Degree Do I Need to Become a Mortgage Broker?
In recent years we have slowly seen the real estate market rebuild itself after a cataclysmic collapse in the early 2000s. And as it builds itself back up, it is slowly becoming a more profitable job to go after. And one field that is doing especially well in the field of mortgages.
Being a Mortgage Broker is a tough, yet rewarding job. You get to help people find their new home and put a smile on their face while also securing yourself a lucrative and fulfilling job. It offers flexible hours, hands-on interaction with properties, and customers.
But what exactly does a Mortgage Broker do? And more importantly, how can you become one? We are going to walk you through the educational requirements to become a Mortgage Broker, along with explaining what they do during their working day.
What Is A Mortgage Broker
A Mortgage Broker, at a first glance, might seem to be someone who provides a Mortgage to a customer. But this isn’t the case. In simple terms, a Mortgage Broker is a middle man working on your behalf to secure you the best mortgage for your financial situation and the property you are interested in.
So why would anyone want a middle man? Why pay extra on top of the mortgage you are about to get. There are a few reasons.
Firstly, Mortage brokers have to be certified. This means they must adhere to strict rules and regulations surrounding the mortgage process. This provides a lot of security to the customer. It can be all too easy to get bogged down by legal jargon or financial terminology as a customer, so having a broker eliminates that and makes sure you aren’t being scammed.
Secondly, Mortgage brokers are able to deal with entities that the general public can’t. This means they can secure a mortgage from a lot of different sources, rather than just a bank. This means by using a mortgage broker a customer has a better chance of securing a great deal.
The big question you are most likely asking is this: What Degree do I need?
The answer might surprise you. There isn’t one. But let us be more specific. This doesn’t mean you can rock up with no educational background and get a job. It means there isn’t one specific degree you need. Sometimes you don’t even need a college-level degree at all.
But you do need a few things. Firstly is a strong understanding of finance and economics. This has to be a bit above a basic level unless you are joining a training scheme.
Your job as a mortgage broker will involve a lot of equations surrounding repayments, financing processes and you will have to calculate the interest on a mortgage for your client. A lot of numbers. So if numeracy is your weak point, this job is not for you at all.
Now, if you are planning to get a degree, we would highly recommend going into finance or economics, or a merging of both if that is on offer. Some colleges or trade schools offer specific courses in real estate, which includes all the information needed to be a mortgage broker with options to branch into property management or development.
These aren’t your only two options. If you do a maths-based subject, such as physics or maths itself, you still stand a good chance of breaking into the field of real estate. As long as you are willing to learn and can apply your mathematical knowledge into its practical applications, you’ll be fine.
Coming from a legal background is also a strong start. There is a lot of legal work involved in being a mortgage broker, and as long as you are good numerical literacy, you will be off to a roaring start. It will help a lot with the next part of the process as well.
All Mortgage Brokers need to be registered and receive a license. You might be wondering what purpose this serves. The license is received after attending a 20-hour training course and completing an in-depth test on everything learned.
During the course, you will have to learn all the federal and state laws concerning mortgage payments, loans, and acquisition. This is to make sure everyone involved in the mortgage process is protected and is acting lawfully. The course also looks into the ethical side of being a loan officer. This involves understanding when someone can’t financially afford a loan and when to sit your client down and tell them getting a mortgage isn’t for them.
The test isn’t easy by any stretch of the imagination. It will require you to study hard and be well prepared. So it helps if your academic background has prepared you for rigorous exam processes.
It is important to note that within this test, known as the SAFE Mortgage Loan Originator Test, has a state-specific requirement around it as well. So you need to make sure whatever material you are studying from is giving you the correct information for your specific state.
In conclusion, there is no one degree needed to become a mortgage broker. But economics or finance are the two biggest courses that will put you in good stead for this career. The best advice we can give is to hit the books and learn as much as you possibly can about the world of real estate.