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Frequently Asked Questions

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NMLS Loan Originator SAFE Test Preparation

What are the testing requirements to become a licensed mortgage loan originator?

All individuals applying for a state-licensed mortgage loan originator license must pass a National exam. This exam is scheduled and taken through Prometric.  Prometric is the vendor the NMLS uses to administer the exam.

How can the Real Estate Institute help me to prepare for the National exam?

Real Estate Institute offers a test preparation program specifically designed to help mortgage loan originators prepare for the National exam. Our program includes a study guide, online practice exams and online score reports.

Click here for more information about our program.

How many questions is on the National exam?

The national component contains 125 questions. Of those, 115 are scored and 10 are excluded from your score because they are being evaluated for use in future exams.


What type of questions are on the National exam?

All questions are multiple-choice.

What score is required to pass the National exam?

Passing score is 75%.

What happens if I fail the National exam?

You are permitted to retake the exam, but there are mandatory waiting periods between each attempt.

You are permitted to retake a test 2 consecutive times (for a total of three attempts) with each retake occurring at least 30 days after the preceding test.

After failing 3 consecutive tests, you must wait at least 6 months before taking the test again.

What should I do today to prepare for and satisfy the testing requirement?

You should begin studying to pass the National exam. We have created a PREP-to-PASS program that includes our comprehensive study guide and online practice tests. Click here for more information about our program.

How do I schedule my National Exam?

Information regarding the National Exam, including how to schedule the exam, can be found at the NMLS website.

Where can I find more information about the National exam?

The online NMLS Resource Center provides detailed information about the tests including what will be covered on the test, the number of questions, how each test is weighted and corresponding reference lists.

Am I permitted or required to use a calculator on the test?

You are permitted to use a basic calculator, which the testing center will provide for you. You will not be allowed to bring your own calculator (or any other device) into the exam. Although the test may include math questions, you will be provided enough information to solve the problem without the use of a financial calculator.

Free Practice Tests

NMLS/SAFE Practice Tests