Mortgage banking associate's degree programs prepare students to be mortgage brokers by going beyond brokerage topics to cover areas such as problem-solving, business models, accounting, communications, and real estate. Such programs generally have few, if any, educational prerequisites beyond a high school diploma and an aptitude for mathematics and accounting. Students who are not interested in a degree program can still complete training courses in mortgage brokerage. While nearly every state has regulations regarding the licensing of mortgage brokers, few have formal degree requirements.
Associate of Applied Science Programs in Mortgage Banking
Courses cover many aspects of the lending and real estate industry beyond just brokering. They include general education courses in mathematics, business, communications and the humanities. Courses typically include:
- Mortgage lending
- Introduction to real estate
- Introduction to computers
- Loan underwriting
- Mortgage ethics
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Mortgage brokers share many duties with loan officers. Like loan officers, job outlook is tied to the health of the real estate market and interest rates. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov) real estate brokers and sales agents are expected to see 3% employment growth between 2014 and 2024, while loan officers will see 8% growth. Real estate brokers and sales agents earned a median salary of $45,610 as of May 2015 and loan officers made $63,430.
Licensing requirements for mortgage brokers vary by state, with many states requiring specific training courses in order to qualify for licensing exams. Students in these training programs learn state and federal mortgage broker laws, different types of transaction financing, mortgage principles, and financing regulations. A limited number of programs are offered as two- or three-semester certificate programs.
Mortgage brokering is a competitive, commission-based industry that often sees success based on reputation and an ability to secure financing. While minimal education is necessary to become a mortgage broker, many voluntary education options exist to expand the broker's credentials and skills set. The National Association of Mortgage Brokers offers three voluntary certifications, including the General Mortgage Associate, Certified Residential Mortgage Specialist, and the Certified Mortgage Consultant.
There are different types of mortgage training programs designed to meet different states' licensure requirements. For the most part though, mortgage broker programs are offered at the associate level and teach students about problem-solving, business models, accounting, communication and real estate.