Ohio Mortgage Broker License: Full Guide [2024 Update]

Published: Jan 08, 2022


Are you considering starting a mortgage business in Ohio? If you’re looking into this endeavor, your first step is to obtain an Ohio mortgage broker license. This is how you can launch your operations in legal compliance.

In 2017, a new law changed the definitions of mortgage professionals and the licensing process. Previously, the active laws were the Mortgage Brokers Act and the Mortgage Loan Act. The Residential Mortgage Lending Act (RMLA) consolidates the licensing procedure for lenders, brokers and servicers and for loan originators. They all need a RMLA Certificate of Registration.

The licensing authority that sets the requirements is the Division of Financial Institutions at the Ohio Department of Commerce. However, the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System and Registry (NMLS) handles the actual procedure. 

In the guide below, you can get to know the essentials about the licensing process. 

Choose a Mortgage License Type

The license types that you can choose from are:

  • Residential Mortgage Lending Act (RMLA) Certificate of Registration (company) - engaging in lending, brokering and servicing of mortgage loans
  • Mortgage Loan Originator License (individual) - taking residential loan applications, assisting a buyer in obtaining a residential mortgage loan, offering or negotiating terms of a residential mortgage loan, and issuing a commitment for a residential mortgage loan to a buyer

Credit union service organizations and depository institutions can also function as mortgage brokers, lenders and servicers by obtaining a Residential Mortgage Lending Act (RMLA) Letter of Exemption. 

The full list of license types is on the NMLS website

Meet the Ohio Mortgage Broker License Requirements

The Division of Financial Institutions has strict requirements for mortgage applicants. They are detailed below. 

Business Documents 

Ohio mortgage companies have to first obtain a business registration from the Secretary of State. You then have to attach it to your application. 

The other documents that you have to get when applying for an Ohio mortgage lender, broker or servicer license include: 

  • Trade name (if applicable) 
  • Business plan
  • Organizational chart
  • Management chart
  • Resident/Registered Agent information
  • Primary contact employees information
  • Disclosure questions
  • Control Person (MU2) attestation 
  • Qualifying Individual/Operations Manager assignment
  • Certificate of Authority/Good Standing Certificate
  • Ohio Attestation

Ohio mortgage loan originator license applicants (individuals) need to provide the following:

  • Disclosure questions
  • Ohio Attestation
  • Company sponsorship
  • Employment history 

Provide a Surety Bond 

Obtaining a surety bond is necessary for most mortgage applications. The Ohio mortgage broker bond is required for a RMLA Certificate of Registration and for a loan originator license for employees of exempt institutions. The purpose of the bond requirement is to guarantee that you will comply with state laws in your activities as a mortgage professional. 

The bond amounts are:

  • Residential Mortgage Lending Act (RMLA) Certificate of Registration - between $50,000 and $150,000, equal to 0.5% of the aggregate loan amount of residential mortgage loans originated in the previous calendar year
  • Mortgage Loan Originator License (employees of exempt institutions) - between $50,000 and $100,000, equal to 0.5% of the aggregate loan amount of residential mortgage loans originated in the previous calendar year

You should provide the bond in the official form

The bonding process entails that you pay a fraction of the required amount. The precise premium is based on the strength of your personal and business finances. If your profile is solid, you can expect to pay a rate between 0.5% and 5%.

Want to check the exact cost of your Ohio mortgage broker bond? Fill in the short form below! 


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Criminal Background Check

For all types of Ohio mortgage licenses, you have to pass an FBI criminal background check. 

Credit Report and Financial Statements

All applicants have to authorize a credit report check. Companies also have to provide their financial statements. 

Education and State Exams 

If you’re applying for an individual license as a loan originator, you have to complete at least 24 hours of NMLS-approved pre-licensure education courses. They must have 4 hours of Ohio content. Afterwards, you need to pass the state exam

Complete the Ohio Mortgage Broker License Application

ohio mortgage broker licenseNext, when you have all the paperwork ready, it’s time to apply online via the NMLS website.

In case you have to send documents to the Division, you can use the following address: [email protected]

License and Registration Fees

Together with your complete application and documents, you have to cover the applicable license and registration fees: 

  • Residential Mortgage Lending Act (RMLA) Certificate of Registration - $500 license/registration fee, $100 NMLS processing fee
  • Mortgage Loan Originator License - $150 license/registration fee, $30 NMLS processing fee

Additionally, you have to cover the credit report fee, which is $15 per control person, and the FBI criminal background check fee of $36.25.


Do you need more details about the Ohio mortgage license and bonding? You can reach us by calling at 877.514.5146.

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About Lance Surety Bonds

Lance Surety Bond Associates, Inc. is a surety bond agency based out of southeastern Pennsylvania that is able to write all surety bond types in all 50 states. We are dedicated to servicing all of our customers' surety bonding needs throughout the country and guarantee competitive rates, timely responses, and unparalleled customer service.

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