Underwriting is a process mortgage lenders use to evaluate if the risk of offering a loan to a specific individual is acceptable and generally looks at credit, capacity and collateral. There are several elements of this process that an underwriter must understand and therefore many programs have been created to facilitate this understanding.
10 Schools with Mortgage Underwriting Programs
While many schools have programs that will prepare mortgage underwriters, below are some of the most reputable.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered*,**||Tuition (2015-2016)**|
|Harvard University||Cambridge, MA||4-year, Private||Master's, Certificate||Certificate: $10,200; Graduate: $42,874|
|Boston University||Boston, MA||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctoral||Undergraduate: $48,436; Graduate: $48,082|
|City University of New York-York College||Jamaica, NY||4-year, Public||Certificate, Bachelor's||$6,784 in-state; $13,858 out-of-state|
|San Diego State University||San Diego, CA||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's||Undergraduate: $6,976 in-state, $18,136 out-of-state; Graduate: $8,242 in-state, $17,170 out-of-state|
|Austin Community College||Austin, TX||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$9,210 in-state; $11,340 out-of-state|
|Arapahoe Community College||Littleton, CO||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$3,334 in-state; $13,052 out-of-state|
|Eastern Illinois University||Charleston, IL||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's||Undergraduate: $11,312 in-state, $13,442 out-of-state; Graduate: $9,461 in-state, $19,037 out-of-state|
|Diablo Valley Community College||Pleasant Hill, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$1,298 in-state; $7,542 out-of-state|
|University of Texas-Austin||Austin, TX||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctoral||Undergraduate: $9,806 in-state, $34,676 out-of-state; Graduate: $10,934 in-state, $20,762 out-of-state|
|San Diego City College||San Diego, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$1,142 in-state; $4,670 out-of-state|
Sources: *School websites, **National Center for Education Statistics
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School Selection Criteria
Students interested in mortgage underwriting can complete a certificate program or an undergraduate degree program in preparation for a career in mortgage banking. Mortgage underwriters can find employment at banks, financial firms or agencies.
Some things to consider when selecting a mortgage underwriting school:
- Some states require real estate and financial professionals, such as mortgage brokers, loan officers and real estate brokers, to be licensed and so it is important that a certificate or degree program provide students with preparation for licensure examinations, and that the curriculum is up-to-date in relation to industry regulations.
- Students may benefit from programs that have connections to professional organizations and should investigate whether faculty in prospective programs is made up of industry professionals who incorporate their real-world experience into their teaching methods to give students a comprehensive understanding of a career in mortgage underwriting, as well as how to prepare for it.
- Certificate and associate's degree programs are available in finance, mortgage banking and real estate at many colleges and universities.
Certificate Programs for Mortgage Underwriting
Certificate programs are offered in areas like mortgage banking, mortgage finance and real estate finance. Programs focus on specific skill sets and prepare graduates for entry-level mortgage banking jobs in a variety of financial organizations. Courses in some certificate programs can be transferred to undergraduate programs.
Associate's Degree Programs for Mortgage Underwriting
Associate's degree programs in real estate, financial services and mortgage banking build on a foundational understanding of loan processing through coursework in real estate and business. Additional courses include subjects such as closing, loan servicing, computer applications, communications, and law.
Bachelor's Degree Programs for Mortgage Underwriting
Applicable bachelor's degree programs are generally business degrees with a related concentration, such as a Bachelor of Science in Business with a major in finance or a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in real estate. These programs prepare students for a variety of finance and real estate careers that incorporate mortgage underwriting. Curricula in these types of programs include courses in information systems, investment, marketing, tax planning, and securities.
When deciding on the most appropriate programs to prepare for a career in mortgage underwriting an individual must consider location, time availability, and future goals. Most programs include coursework related to accounting, law, and communications.