A recent report from LendingTree revealed that Americans collectively owe $12.14 trillion. If you couple that with a steadily recovering real estate market, you have one lucrative venture.
The thought of participating in both markets has led real estate agents to wonder: can you have a real estate license and mortgage license? The answer is yes. Most states allow real estate agents to hold both real estate and mortgage licenses. This is called dual licensing.
This licensing fashion permits real estate agents to provide clients a comprehensive service.
Below, we’ll unravel the mystery surrounding dual licensing: we will explore the benefits and risks of holding these licenses simultaneously. You’ll understand the regulations instrumental to your career growth by reading on.
Regulations and Guidelines for Holding Both Licenses
The question: can you have a real estate license and mortgage license, is more a company guideline than a legal state-wide regulation.
The general consensus around the country is that a real estate agent may also hold a mortgage loan officer license. But ensure that you verify with your real estate commission that dual licensing is accepted in your state.
As the credentials suggest, dual licensing allows you to play agent and loan officer in a single transaction.
However, it is not always celebrated, and that, with good reason. Remember our breakdown on dual agency? This operation is frowned upon and considered illegal in several states because it is perceived to compromise the integrity of transactions.
Most real estate licensing agencies are not convinced that an agent would prioritize their client’s needs over closing the sale.
This is similar to the thought mortgage companies grapple with when deciding whether to accept dually licensed agents.
Roles and Responsibilities
A real estate agent represents buyers or sellers of real estate properties. They help their clients find, negotiate, and close deals on homes that meet their needs and preferences. A real estate agent may also provide advice, guidance, and referrals to other professionals, such as home inspectors, appraisers, and attorneys.
A mortgage loan officer, who differs from a mortgage broker, works for a bank or a mortgage company and helps borrowers obtain financing for their home purchase.
They evaluate the borrower’s credit history, income, assets, and debt to determine their eligibility and offer them suitable loan products and terms. A mortgage loan officer may also assist the borrower with the application, documentation, and closing process.
Similarities Between Real Estate Agents and Mortgage Loan Officers
Real estate agents and mortgage loan officers are both professionals who help people achieve their homeownership dreams. Here are places where their operations intersect:
Education, Licensing, and Regulation Requirements
- Both real estate agents and mortgage loan officers must have a high school diploma or equivalent and be at least 18 years old to apply for licensure.
- They need to complete pre-licensing education as part of their licensing journey.
- A real estate license and a mortgage license must both be renewed periodically according to state requirements.
- License renewal requires completion of continuing education courses.
Operation and Earning
- Real estate agents and mortgage loan officers earn on commission
- They both need an entrepreneurial mindset to succeed
Common Skills and Traits
Beyond the similarities in their licensing and operational scope, mortgage officers and agents also share skills and traits:
- Both real estate agents and mortgage loan officers must have excellent communication, interpersonal, and customer service skills.
- They need to be great listeners who understand their client’s needs and expectations.
- Agents and officers must be teachers willing to explain complex laws and regulations to their clients.
- They must also be able to handle multiple tasks, work under pressure, and meet deadlines.
- Both real estate agents and mortgage loan officers need to have strong analytical, problem-solving, and decision-making skills.
- They need to be able to research and evaluate the market conditions, the property features, and the loan options.
- Both must be good negotiators who can secure good deals and close sales effectively and efficiently.
Differences Between Real Estate License and Mortgage License
Even with their similarities, agents and officers have a divergence in their education and operation:
Education, Licensing, and Regulations
- Real estate agents’ pre-licensing course covers topics such as real estate law, ethics, contracts, and marketing. In contrast, mortgage officers have a pre-licensing course that covers topics such as federal and state laws, loan products, and lending practices.
- Real estate agents are answerable to the real estate commission, but mortgage officers need to register with the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System.
Operations and Earnings
- Real estate brokers work for real estate companies, while mortgage loan officers work for financing institutions. These could be banks or mortgage companies.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Dual Licensing
Many real estate agents consider getting a dual license, holding both a real estate and a mortgage broker license. Doing so can expand your business offerings and earnings potential but also come with some drawbacks.
Benefits of Holding Both Licenses
Obtaining dual licensure opens up more services you can provide to clients. With expertise in real estate transactions and financing, you can guide buyers through the entire home shopping process. This consolidated guidance can attract more clients and set you apart from agents offering only one service.
Holding these two licenses also creates opportunities for you to earn commissions from both the deals’ real estate and lending sides. As you build a client base and reputation in both areas, you can expect your income to grow.
You also gain a competitive edge in the market by becoming a go-to for clients’ diverse home-buying and selling needs. One-stop assistance is attractive for customers looking to minimize complications in a real estate deal.
Challenges of Dual Licensing
Dual licensure also comes with some potential pain points. To start, you must have excellent time management skills. Properly servicing both real estate and mortgage clients while fulfilling continuing education in both areas is exceptionally demanding.
Staying current with laws, regulations, and best practices in two complex industries also takes diligence. This can increase the margin of error in operations.
Requirements for license renewal and exams in both sectors can stack up quickly.
Finally, handling clients’ expectations across service areas requires sharp expertise. Trying to be a jack-of-all-trades but master of none will undermine your authority in the industry and satisfaction ratings.
Pulling Double Duty
Deciding to work as a real estate agent and a mortgage loan officer is an exciting prospect. It not only promises a financial increase, but it also allows you to offer better services to clients.
Here at Real Estate License Wizard, we do real estate. If you are ready to get your real estate license, you can review our comprehensive real estate exam practices guaranteed to help you prepare for the exam.
Try the national exam before jumping into your state-specific portion. The truth is; we have that too!
If you’re considering dual licensure:
1. Research: Know your state’s guidelines about holding both licenses.
2. Assess: Do a personal introspection and check whether you have the necessary skills and capabilities to pursue these demanding markets simultaneously.
3. Evaluate: Consider if you are prepared for the additional workload that will result from the responsibilities in two different sectors.
4. Review: Weigh out your options carefully before making an informed decision.
What do you think about having dual licensure? Have any experiences or insights to share? Please drop them down below! If this information was helpful or sparked interest in exploring further career paths within real estate, feel free to share this article.