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How to Get a Mortgage License in Illinois | Mortgage Educators

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Get Your Mortgage Loan Originator License in 2023!


Illinois Pre-Licensing Education

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Starting at: $349 Now Only $239!

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How to Get an NMLS Mortgage License in Illinois


1. Apply for Your NMLS Account and ID Number

To become a Mortgage Loan Originator (MLO) in Illinois, first go to the NMLS website to register for your “unique identifier.” You will get an NMLS (Nationwide Multistate Licensing System) account and will be assigned an ID number. You will use this number often through the licensing process.


2. Complete Your NMLS Pre-License Education

To obtain a new Illinois MLO license, you must successfully complete at least 20 hours of NMLS-approved coursework through an accredited organization like Mortgage Educators. Illinois does not require state-specific PE (Pre-License Education).


3. Pass the NMLS Mortgage Licensing Exam

Once PE is complete, the next step in getting a mortgage license in Illinois, to pass the National Test Component exam given through NMLS. You must receive a score of 75% or higher. Learn more about this step here.


4. Complete Background Checks and Pay All Fees

Now that you have passed the exam, you can start applying for your mortgage license in Illinois. To meet the background check requirements, you must be fingerprinted, submit to a background check, and pay for an individual credit report. For more information about background checks and fingerprinting requirements, click here.


5. Apply for Your Illinois Mortgage License

There are many steps in the process of getting your Illinois MLO license, so use this checklist to ensure you don’t miss or forget anything.


6. Associate Your NMLS Number with Your Employer

In order to generate mortgage loans in Illinois, you must have a documented and reported relationship with a licensed mortgage company. Use this link to establish that professional relationship with NMLS.


Revive and Renew with a Mortgage License in Illinois

Becoming an MLO in Illinois can change your life, personally and professionally. The flexibility of this career choice is one of its greatest benefits. If you are interested in making some extra money, but having softer goals, you can choose an employer who is satisfied with whatever number of mortgages you close.


On the other hand, you can make a substantial amount of money with hard work and determination. We are committed to providing the education, tips, and up-to-date information and requirements to help you make the most of your mortgage license in Illinois.



Illinois Mortgage License Education Requirements

The State of Illinois requires 20 hours of NMLS-approved pre-licensing education. These hours can be done in-person, online structured, or online self-study, with varying authentication requirements for each.


The 20 hours required by the state of Illinois must include:


- 3 hours of federal law

- 3 hours of ethics, which must include content on fraud, consumer protection, and fair lending

- 2 hours regarding non-traditional lending practices

- 12 hours of undefined education or electives



What's the Difference Between an Illinois Mortgage Broker License and an Illinois Loan Officer License?

As a licensed mortgage loan originator, you will work for a mortgage broker or mortgage banker. A mortgage broker “shops around” to find the best loan product for their client, whereas a loan officer will provide the best opportunity the financial institution they work for can provide.


Cost of Getting Your Mortgage License in Illinois

Getting your mortgage license in Illinois will take some investment, but the benefit-cost ratio is outstanding. There is no fee to register for your NMLS unique identifier. Once you have completed the Mortgage Educator bundled courses, other fees that you will encounter include:


- $30 NMLS Initial Processing Fee

- $200 Illinois License/Registration Fee

- $15 Credit Report Fee

- $36.25 FBI Criminal Background Check Fee

- Total=$281.25


You will need to be fingerprinted as part of the FBI Criminal Background Check. The average cost in Illinois is about $65.



PE Expiration Policy in Illinois

Illinois’ PE (Pre-licensing Education) policy mirrors that of NMLS. To ensure that MLOs are current on lending practice requirements, they must acquire their license within three (3) years of completion of the education OR within three (3) years of last licensure.



Illinois Continuing Education Requirements

As with every state and territory of the U.S., MLOs in Illinois are required to complete a minimum of 8 hours of CE, or continuing education units. These 8 hours can be done online or in-person and must include:


- 3 hours of federal law

- 2 hours of ethics in lending

- 2 hours of non-traditional lending

- 1 hour of undefined education



Move Ahead with Mortgage Educators

Are you ready to make the move to mortgage lending? Register now for our comprehensive and convenient online NMLS-approved coursework. When you bundle the coursework with exam prep tools, not only will you save money, you’ll save yourself stress and hassle.





Additional Questions?

Mortgage Educators and Compliance is here to answer any additional questions that you may have in regards to your Illinois mortgage license. For additional questions, feel free to call us at (801) 676-2520 or email us at






Illinois Mortgage Education Pre-Licensing