California Finance Lender License / Broker License

California Finance Lender License / Broker License

  Get licensed as a Broker or Lender in California by applying for a California Finance Lender License through the California Department of Business Oversight. Total out of pocket costs including California state filing fees, surety bond premiums, and licensing services are as low as $2,150* through American Mortgage Licensing.

American Mortgage Licensing assists commercial lenders, consumer lenders, mortgage brokers, mortgage lenders and any other type of consumer or commercial lending activity under the CFL License approved with the Department of Business Oversight on a daily basis. We open the door for greater lending opportunities by managing your entire licensing project and setting up all of the necessary paperwork and documentation that you will need in order to become approved as a California Finance Lender in as little time as possible. We do as much of the work as possible, so that you can remain focused on your business.

What is the CFL License?

The CFL (California Finance Lender) License is regulated by the California Department of Business Oversight. The CFL license is a required license for just about any type of consumer and commercial lending activity in California. It may also be used for residential mortgage brokers and mortgage lenders as an alternative license other than the California BRE license and California (RMLA) licenses. It provides mortgage brokers and lenders with an exemption to other licenses and enables the licensees to function as mortgage brokers and lenders under the California Finance Law. The main stipulation is that the broker and lender involved in the transaction must both be licensed under the CFL.

What does this mean?

If you obtain a CFL license you can broker loans, but only to lenders who are also CFL licensed. The majority of lenders and banks in California have their CFL license.

What are the advantages in obtaining a CFL license?

Less Restrictions

If you are not brokering or making residential loans under this license, you can hire non-licensed sales agents to originate loans under your company license. However, all employees, both part-time and full-time, must be W2 employees. They cannot be contract (1099) employees. There are no exceptions to this rule. All residential loan originators must be licensed separately.

Minimum Requirements

No physical office requirement. Applicants do not need to be from the State of California. Non-residential mortgage license applicants are required to maintain a minimum net worth amount of only $25,000 in their company (Assets minus liabilities) and obtain and maintain a surety bond in the amount of $25,000. We will set up the surety bond application on your behalf. Non-Residential broker and lender applicants are not required to take classes nor pass an exam. No specific lending experience is required.

Additional Requirements for Owner-Occupied Residential Mortgage Brokers and Lenders

Residential mortgage applicants must maintain a minimum net worth amount of $50,000 if brokering only, or $250,000 if funding owner occupied residential mortgage loans. All residential mortgage loan originators must be licensed individually as a Mortgage Loan Originator. This individual license requires 20 hours of pre-licensing NMLS approved education, of which, 2 hours must be California specific. Individuals must also take and pass the national component NMLS exam. While we are not an education provider, we recommend taking the 20 hour NMLS Pre-licensing course through our preferred provider, Praedo Institute. By accessing their site through the link, you will automatically save 10% on the price of your course. You will want to purchase the 20 HOUR CA-DBO SAFE Comprehensive Mortgage Loan Originator Course.

Who can apply for the CFL license?

Individuals, partnerships, associations, limited liability companies and corporations. According to the Department of Business Oversight many of the largest Fortune 500 companies have their CFL license.

What are the Fees?

American Mortgage Licensing's services $1,495
California Filing Fees $400 residential mortgages, $300 for non-residential
Surety Bond Premiums Approximate annual premium of $250*

* Bond fees are based on the applicant's personal credit score. Example above represents an applicant with good to excellent credit.

How do I Start the Process?

To begin your project immediately, contact American Mortgage Licensing at 469.688.8441, or use the form below. We will be happy to answer any questions you have on the CFL license. We license brokers and lenders in all fifty states.

We look forward to the opportunity to serve you. Please let us know what we can do for you.

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