• Home
  • |
  • Blog
  • |
  • How to Become a Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Michigan

How to Become a Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Michigan

Last updated on April 14, 2023

How to Become a Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Michigan

Quick note! RealEstateLicenseTraining is partnered with the best online real estate schools. When you sign up using our links, we may get a small affiliate commission. Read how we conduct our reviews here

So you’re thinking about becoming a mortgage loan officer

The right time is NOW!

With the rapid growth in house pricing, more and more home buyers are looking for mortgages. 

And more and more banks and lenders are looking for officers to handle these clients. 

The best part?

The steps on how to become a mortgage loan officer (MLO) in Michigan aren’t complicated. 

In fact, there are only 6 steps. 

Let’s look at these…

How to Become an MLO in Michigan – The 6 Steps to Being Licensed

Here are the 6 steps to becoming an MLO in Michigan:

  1. Make an NMLS account
  2. Take the required pre-licensure education (PE)
  3. Register and pass the SAFE MLO test
  4. Start your MLO application
  5. Complete the background checks
  6. Find a sponsoring company

Are you ready to dive into the details?

Let’s go!

Step #1: Make an NMLS Account

Getting started is SUPER easy!

All you need to do is make an NMLS account. 

Here’s how:

  • You’ll then want to choose an individual account. 
  • From there, provide the necessary information.
  • Wait for the NMLS to send you an email with your account confirmation, login details, and — this is very important — your ID number. 

And that’s it! 

Step #2: Take the Required Pre-Licensure Education (PE)

In the real estate industry, education is a MUST

And it’s no different for aspiring mortgage loan officers. 

Thankfully, in Michigan, that only translates to 22 hours of approved PE. 

For this, you need to complete at least:

  • 3 hours of Federal Law
  • 3 hours of Ethics
  • 2 hours of Non-Traditional Mortgage Lending
  • 12 hours of general electives
  • 2 hours of Michigan content 

The even better news?

The State of Michigan and NMLS allow online courses!

Here are a few of the best ones you can check out:

And here is a complete list of approved schools. 

Step #3: Register and Pass the SAFE MLO Test

It’s test time!

Here, you’ll need to answer 120 questions (only 115 are graded!) in around 3 hours. 

You’ll need a score of at least 75% to pass. 

The question will be divided into these areas:

  • Federal Mortgage-Related Laws – 24%
  • Uniform State Content – 11%
  • General Mortgage Knowledge – 20%
  • Mortgage Loan Origination Activities – 27%
  • Ethics – 18%

Okay, okay. 

What about the registration?

Follow these steps to register for the SAFE MLO test:

  • In your NMLS account, create an enrollment test window for the ‘National Test with Uniform State Content’. 
  • Confirm the Candidate Agreements. 
  • Pay for the test window — this will cost you $110. 
  • If you want to take the test online, you can schedule it with the NMLS. For in-person testing, you can schedule with Prometric

Step #4: Start Your MLO Application

Once you pass the SAFE MLO test, you can now apply for your MLO license. 

For this, you’ll need to fill up the Individual Form (MU4) in your NMLS account. 

Here, you’ll have to:

  • Select the state you want to apply in. 
  • Select the license you want to apply for — in your case, a mortgage loan officer or originator license.
  • Provide the required details.
  • Authorize a background check and submit fingerprints (we’ll show you how to do this below).
  • Authorize a credit report (we’ll also give you the details for this below).
  • Answer the disclosure questions — and provide an explanation and/or documents if you answered ‘yes’ to any question.
  • Provide employment history.
  • Pay the fees (check the table below).
NMLS initial processing fee:$30
MI license/registration fee: $75
Credit report: $15
FBI criminal background check:$36.25

Step #5: Complete the Background Checks

As we mentioned, you’ll have to authorize an FBI criminal background check and credit report. 

Here’s how to do that:

  • In your NMLS account, go to ‘Filing’ > ‘Request New/Update’ > ‘Criminal Background Check’.
  • Select ‘Submit New Prints’ — unless you already have prints on file, then you won’t need to schedule for fingerprinting. 
  • Follow the prompts on the screen — this will let you fill up a demographics section, save, attest, and submit.
  • Pay the CBC fee.
  • Get fingerprinted. 
  • Go back to ‘Filing’ > ‘Request New/Update’ > ‘Credit Report’.
  • You will see a small icon. You have to turn it on to authorize a credit check. 
  • Complete the Identification Verification Process (IDV).
  • Review, attest, and submit. 
  • Pay the credit report fee. 

NOTE: If your credit report is questionable, you need to submit a line-by-line letter of explanation along with proof of payment, payment arrangements, or evidence of any formal dispute filed. Upload these through your Individual Form (MU4) application. 

Step #6: Find a Sponsoring Company

Your MLO application is basically complete. 

However, there are some final touches that you need to make. 

For one, you’ll have to find a sponsoring company — this will be the firm that you work with. 

It’s a good idea to take your time here. 

Apply for a position in several reputable companies. 

Once you are hired, have your employer request sponsorship through NMLS. The MI Department of Insurance and Finance Services will review the request. 

If they approve it, your status will change from ‘Approved-Inactive’ to ‘Approved-Active’. 

Finally, you’ll have to mail an Individual MLO Surety Bond OR Company MLO Surety Bond to the Michigan Department of Insurance and Finance Services. 

And you’re done!

You can now start working as a mortgage loan officer in the state!

Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming an MLO in Michigan

How Much Do MLOs Earn in Michigan?

According to ZipRecruiter, MLOs can expect a sizeable annual income of $62,904 per year in Michigan as of 2022. 

Top earners get an average of $104,502 a year, while the 25th percentile earns an average of $45,665. 

Of course, your salary will depend on the firm you work with, the amount of work that comes out your way, your experience, etc. 

What Does a Mortgage Loan Officer Do?

A mortgage loan officer has many tasks. 

One of these is gathering the financial information of a client and reviewing if they’re eligible for a mortgage loan. 

They can also handle mortgage applications and mortgage deals, as well as handle some of the paperwork and formalities. 


You now know how to become a mortgage loan officer (MLO) in Michigan!

That wasn’t so complicated, right?

There are just 6 steps that you need to complete. 

If you ask us, we’d say the longest process is step 2 – your education – and step 5 – finding a sponsor. 

You can fly by the rest. 

So good luck!

Compare Real Estate Schools:

Additional real estate license guides you might like

January 16, 2024

Instead of just giving you the best California online real estate school, I’m going to

Best California Online Real Estate School – Top 8 Reviews

September 28, 2023

At first, becoming a mortgage loan officer might seem overwhelming.  How do you even begin?

How to Become a Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Hawaii

September 28, 2023

So you want to become a mortgage loan officer in Vermont… But don’t know how

How to Become a Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Vermont