At its annual meeting last month, the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association (NRMLA) formally introduced a new level of certification for which members are eligible to apply. Known as the Certified Reverse Mortgage Professional (CRMP), it is intended to designate that a reverse mortgage originator has achieved a certain level of experience, education, and ethics.

According to the NRMLA, “Eligibility to apply for a CRMP designation requires that a loan originator have at least two years of experience and closed 50 reverse mortgages. Only then can they enter the process which includes 12 hours annually of continued education, participating in a three-hour interactive ethics training seminar, a background check and sitting for an exam. The certification is valid for three years, but a designee must recertify every year and obtain 12 hours of continuing education credits annually over that period.” In this way, the certification can serve as a point of competitive distinction. All else being equal, most borrowers would be more inclined to obtain a mortgage from a loan originator that had undergone the maximum level of training and received the highest designation currently bestowed by the reverse mortgage industry association.

From the standpoint of the NRMLA, the certification will not only be a source of income, but will also provide an ethical boost to the reverse mortgage product and to the industry in general. “The program is administered by an Independent Certification Committee comprised of NRMLA members that oversee the establishment of criteria, eligibility, testing and recertification.” In this way, the NRMLA can address claims that reverse mortgage borrowers don’t understand what they are agreeing to and aren’t aware of their other options.

Personally, I think this is a step in the right direction. It’s important that borrowers feel comfortable with their respective loan originators and not have to worry that vital information is being withheld so as to “facilitate” the transaction. By dealing with a CRMP loan originator, there should be a decreased likelihood that borrowers will be cajoled into obtaining a reverse mortgage when the conditions are not suitable. Meanwhile, the handful of professionals that have already been certified will be held to a higher standard, since they represent not only their respective lender, but also the industry at large.

Let’s just hope that the designation proves its worth and isn’t used cynically to lull borrowers into a false sense of security.

One Response to “New Certification for Reverse Mortgage Professionals”

  1. Gabrielle White Says:

    How can I become certified to teach clients about the Reverse Mortgage?

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