Mortgage Education Series: Federal SAFE Test Training
For those that wish to become Loan Advisors the one thing that stands between them, and their future career is the SAFE MLO (Mortgage Loan Originator) Federal Exam. What you are also likely to find is that the overall pass rate of the test is a 56%. That is a pretty daunting number, and if you speak with anyone that has taken the test, they probably have a horror story attached with the exam whether it be sheer anxiety or the actual difficulty level.
Most companies give you the required 20 hour pre-licensing material and a book and expect you to pass the exam. Royal United does something very different and in turn has seen a spike in passing rates.
Royal United has a dedicated two week class that is designed to fully prepare you for anything the SAFE Test has to offer. The class is ever changing because the instructor, designs the course based upon his experiences and the results of those who’ve taken it. This means he is able to design his course specifically for the exam. I say this because admittedly the Federal SAFE exam is a different beast than what a Loan Advisor will do day-to-day. It does give each new Advisor a very solid understanding of the laws passed in wake of the market crash of 2008.
The first task of the two week course consists of online assessment testing. This is required of anyone taking the Federal Exam and while they may seem very helpful, they only scratch the surface of the content. While doing these, we were guided into reading and then reviewed chapters daily that were assigned as homework the night before. This allowed for a good overview of the information and while nothing was concrete, it was a good starting point.
The book we use is a great asset, however it was a lot of information to take in, so our plan was to knock it out in the first week and use it as a reference. The second week consisted of mainly a classroom type setting. Paul would give us specific portions that we had learned the previous week, and hammer them into our head until everyone was on the same page.
This process was refined and reinforced with practice tests. We also were required to make a comprehensive study guide which ensured that all the information provided was instilled in us and that we could regurgitate it onto paper. Once this was completed, all of us trainees were given access to high test scorers’ study guides so that we could utilize these for the test. The last day was used for any questions we had going into the test which finalized all of the material.
This process allows Royal to hover higher than the national average in terms of pass rate. This is because the training process is thorough, specialized and rigorous. It is a lot of information in two weeks. The most important thing I have learned throughout my time at this company thus far is trust the process. It was a great feeling knowing that Royal United Mortgage had a process in place to help guide us new hires.