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How to Become A Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Arizona

Last updated on March 2, 2023

How to Become A Mortgage Loan Officer (MLO) in Arizona

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All right, you want to become a mortgage loan officer. 

How do I know?

Well, you wouldn’t be here if you didn’t. 

Now, as most mortgage loan officer guides go, they only cover the general steps and not the specific requirements for each state. 

We’re going to change that. 

Here, we’re going to walk you through ALL the steps on how to become a mortgage loan officer (MLO) in Arizona. 

We won’t skip anything. 

So let’s get started!

How to Become an MLO in Arizona – The 5 Steps

Here are the 5 steps to becoming an MLO in Arizona:

  1. Register with NMLS
  2. Complete the required education
  3. Pass the MLO licensing exam
  4. Find a sponsoring company
  5. Apply for your MLO license

Let’s walk you through the steps one by one. 

Step #1: Register with NMLS

For everything regarding MLO licensing and license regulation, the NMLS or Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System is your go-to. 

So to begin the process, you first need to register with them. 

Here are the steps:

  • Go to the NMLS website and create an account.
  • Request for an individual account. 
  • Provide your full legal name, residential address, and Social Security Number.
  • Receive your unique Individual ID number (it’s important to keep this).

Don’t worry – there’s no fee when creating an account — and you don’t have to worry about the requirements yet. 

Just create an account with the NMLS to start your MLO journey. 

Step #2: Complete the Required Education

In Arizona, you are required to complete 20 hours of MLO pre-licensing education + 4 hours of Arizona law. Here are the required topics: 

  • 3 hours of federal law 
  • 3 hours of ethics
  • 2 hours of non-traditional mortgage lending
  • 12 hours of electives
  • 4 hours of Arizona law

Remember, you’re required to take all these topics — so make sure you don’t skip them!

And also, make sure you only study with an approved provider. 

Here is a list of some of the best online providers that offer approved MLO pre-licensing:

Step #3: Pass the MLO Licensing Exam

In Arizona, this exam is administered by Prometric. 

But before that, you need to enroll for it in your NMLS account

Here are the steps:

  • Log into your NMLS account.
  • Create a test enrollment window. 
  • Pay the $110 exam fee.
  • Accept the Candidate Agreement.
  • Schedule your exam appointment. This can be done through your NMLS account or Prometric

To pass the exam, you need a score of 75%  or higher. 

Now, there are a total of 120 questions, each covering topics on different ethics, laws, regulations, etc. That said, only 115 questions will be scored, while the remaining 5 are pretest questions. 

Also, you only have 190 minutes to answer everything. That equates to almost 3 hours. 

Step #4: Find A Sponsoring Company

Before you even get your MLO license, you need to find a sponsoring company. 

Remember, this is the company that you will be working for. So make sure that you take the time to find the right one for YOU. 

Don’t be in a rush. 

And once you find the perfect one, have them request sponsorship from the Arizona Department of Insurance and Financial Institutes (AZ-DIFI).

If the request is approved, you can move on to the final step…

Step #5: Apply for Your MLO License

There are several documents you need to submit to apply for your MLO license. These are: 

  • A completed Application Form MU4 (this is found and submitted in your NMLS account). NOTE: Your sponsoring company may fill this form up for you, so make sure you ask them ahead of time to avoid duplicate applications. 
  • Criminal background check. You can check how to complete this requirement here
  • Credit report. In your NMLS account, you need to request a credit report. Click here to see how to do that. 
  • Proof of full legal name, status, and citizenship or legal presence. 
  • Any necessary documents if you answered “YES” to any questions in Form MU4. 

Besides documents, you will also need to pay the following fees:

AZ-DIFI Application Fee:$350

AZ-DIFI License Fee:
Jan/Feb/Mar – $150
Apr/May/Jun – $112.50
Jul/Aug/Sep – $75
Oct – $37.50
Nov/Dec – $187.50 (includes renewal fees)
NMLS Processing Fee:$30
Criminal Background Check Fee:$36.25
Credit Report Fee:$15

Once everything is submitted, you will receive your MLO license. 


Frequently Asked Questions About Mortgage Loan Officers in Arizona

For even more information, let’s answer some frequently asked questions. 

What is a Mortgage Loan Officer?

As a mortgage loan officer (or mortgage loan originator), it’s your job to help people apply for their very own home loans! You also become the licensed representative of mortgage brokers, banks, and credit unions. 

As a mortgage loan officer, you’re there for the loan process from start to finish. You make sure the information provided by the borrower is verifiably correct, and collect documents as evidence. 

What’s more, you’re the one in charge of negotiating the best possible rates and programs for a certain financial profile. You track deadlines, and in the end, successfully close the loan for your client. 

How Much Is The Salary of a Mortgage Loan Officer in Arizona?

The average salary of a mortgage loan officer in Arizona is $155,118 a year. That’s a LOT!

What is the Difference Between a Mortgage Loan Officer and a Mortgage Broker?

It’s easy to confuse the two. A mortgage broker has multiple lenders on their radar. They may act as the intermediary, but they’re not going to directly connect you with the source of funds. 

A mortgage loan officer, however, works only for one lender. Your employer — which can be a mortgage bank, credit union, or institutional bank — provides the funds needed by the borrower. 


And those are the steps on how to become a mortgage loan officer (MLO) in Arizona. 

It isn’t as complicated as you might expect.

However, it does require time, effort, and investment. 

But don’t worry – if you follow these steps one by one, you’ll soon be on your way to getting an official credential. 

So what are you waiting for?

Go ahead and get started!

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