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Get Your Mortgage Loan Originator License in 2024!

WA Pre-Licensing Bundle

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Starting at: $399 Now Only $279!

Use Promo Code: WAPEDEAL

Licensed in another state and want to add Washington?

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Now Only $99.98!

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How to Get an NMLS Mortgage License in Washington

Home ownership is a huge dream for people across the nation, which makes a mortgage loan originator career both lucrative and enriching to pursue. Mortgage Educators and Compliance (MEC) is ready to help you with every step of your journey to get your license as a mortgage loan originator in Washington. We have provided the six steps below.

1. Apply for your NMLS Account and ID Number

You’ll first need to set up an account with the nationwide mortgage licensing system (NMLS) which will provide you with an NMLS ID number to start the mortgage pre-license process. To do so, go to the NMLS website.

2. Complete your NMLS Pre-License Education

After you’ve accessed your account on the NMLS website and received your NMLS ID, you can now register for and take NMLS approved pre-licensure courses for mortgage loan originators. Washington requires 22 hours (18 hours on specified topics & 4 hours of elective topics) SAFE pre-licensure education.

3. Need to Pass the NMLS Mortgage Licensing Exam

All license applicants need to schedule an appointment for and successfully complete the national test component. To pass, you must score at least a 75%. Note that this is not an easy test (the first time pass rate is generally below 60%), but MEC will ensure that you are well prepared to pass the NMLS exam with ease, on the first go. Find out more on how to take your NMLS exam here.

4. Complete Background Checks and Pay All Fees

To finalize your application and receive your license, you'll need to pay several non-refundable fees and complete a criminal background check. As part of your background check, a pull of your credit report will be required. Find out more about how to complete your background check and fingerprints here.

5. Apply for your Washington Mortgage License

After receiving a passing score on your NMLS exam, you need to apply for your Washington NMLS license, but you are well on your way to start your mortgage loan originator business! You can find more information on how to apply here.

6. Associate your NMLS Account with your Employer

Your mortgage license will be in a pending state in Washington, even after passing the national exam, until you have employer sponsorship through a mortgage company or other approved financial institution like a credit union or bank, which lets the government know that an employer is supervising your business activities as a licensed mortgage loan originator and that every financial regulation is followed. In other words, you cannot engage solely on your own; you must be supervised directly at all times once you get your mortgage loan originator license. Learn how to associate your NMLS account with your chosen employer here.


Earn Your Washington Mortgage License 

While obtaining a mortgage loan originator license and becoming a mortgage loan officer in Washington is very simple and the compensation can be tremendous, it’s not for everyone. At the end of the day, you are running a loan processing business, so it takes a willingness to learn the basic ins and outs of the industry and a desire to work hard to get that next sale.

That said, the mortgage industry is a great one to get into as it provides a lot of flexibility and can be extremely rewarding. If you like to work hard, you are a people person, and you have a desire to learn, becoming a mortgage loan officer is the perfect choice for you.

Fortunately, we are here to help. MEC’s industry experts with years of experience both created all class curriculums and will serve as a live instructor for each class. This means you’ll get quality education with a live instructor. Each course is informative and entertaining. But the best part is that our experts will assist you in your first steps towards your mortgage loan originator license. Before long, you will excel in your career as a loan officer.


Washington Frequently Asked Questions

In an effort to curb the predatory lending practices that led to the demise of the housing and residential mortgage industry in 2008, the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act (SAFE) was enacted. This opened up a world of opportunity to those driven to attain an MLO license and then work hard to match people with loan products.

Topic Hours Required
Fair Lending, Ethics, Fraud, and Consumer Protection 3 Hours
Federal Laws and Regulations 3 Hours
Non-Standard Lending 2 Hours
Undefined Electives 10 Hours
Washington Specific Education 4 Hours
Total 22 Hours

Although it hasn't been enacted, be on the look out for the PE expiration policy coming soon. It states - If you complete the required 20 hours of education but do not obtain your license for a 3-year period, you'll need to repeat the coursework. The same applies if you let your license lapse for 3+ years before you want to get back into the industry.

A “mortgage broker” refers to an individual or an organization that connects consumers with mortgage loans from a variety of companies. Mortgage brokers frequently employ loan officers. In contrast, a loan officer is an employee who regularly works with borrowers and provides loans that are originated by their employer. Brokers and loan officers need different types of licenses.

Earning your mortgage broker license in Washington should be considered an investment well worth your time. Here’s what to expect when it comes to licensing fees in Washington:

NMLS Initial Processing Fee $30
Washington License Fee $125
Credit Report $15
FBI Criminal Background Check $36.25
Total License Cost $206.25

On an annual basis, Washington MLO license holders must complete 9 total hours of Comprehensive Continuing Education that must cover:

Topic Required Hours
Federal Regulations and Law 3 Hours
Ethics, including consumer protection, fair lending 2 Hours
Non-Traditional mortgage lending 2 Hours
General Elective 1 Hour
Washington State Elective 1 Hour

Remember to take into account the “successive years” rule, which prohibits loan officers from taking the same CE course two years in a row. Mortgage Educators changes its continuing education course annually to ensure there are no issues with the successive years rule.
The deadline to complete CE in Washington is December 15th. MLO's in Washington are actually prevented from applying for license renewal until they have completed their CE.

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

Become an MLO in Washington

Whether you are looking for a Washington mortgage license renewal or are seeking to obtain your license for the first time, our courses will help you meet all the educational requirements and prepare you to pass the national NMLS test.


If you have any questions about our courses, or about how to become an MLO, contact us today. We’re more than happy to answer any questions you may have.


Washington Mortgage Education Pre-LicensingWashington MLO NMLS Approved Education