How to Become a HECM Counselor
The main requirements are:
Successfully complete an approved formal HECM training course
In order to be eligible to apply for the HUD HECM roster, you must complete a HECM-related training approved by HUD. NeighborWorks offers several of these approved courses
. HUD and other organizations may also offer approved HECM training. You must obtain a training certificate for each training event, which you will scan and upload into the roster application system
Pass the HUD HECM exam
This exam is required by HUD ruling, which has established standards to qualify counselors to provide HECM counseling to prospective borrowers. This is a challenging exam designed to ensure that well-informed counselors are providing services to senior homeowners. Extensive preparation is required. In the past, you also had to be employed by a HUD-approved agency to take the HUD HECM exam. Guidance from HUD has clarified that a person not yet employed can take the exam.
The exam is administered by Ajanta Consulting. Access detailed instructions
on registering for and scheduling your exam, and email email@example.com
with any questions. You can also find information about the HECM exam at HUDExchange
or call the HUD hotline at 1-800-569-4287.
Sites where your name should NOT be listed:
Become employed at a HUD-approved agency
You must be employed by a HUD-approved agency to apply for the HUD HECM roster. As a HECM counselor however, you will hold the HECM roster status, not the agency. Therefore, your agency can only offer HECM counseling if they employ a HECM roster-qualified counselor. If you leave an agency and you were their only HECM roster-qualified counselor, they can no longer offer HECM counseling.
Apply for the HUD HECM roster
Once you have taken a HECM training course, passed the HUD HECM exam, and become employed at a HUD approved agency, it is time to apply for the HUD HECM roster. Follow the application instructions
carefully. If you run into technical difficulties, or are having trouble with the system itself, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Access step-by-step instructions
for how to get on the roster, apply for FHA Connection, issue counseling certificates, and update continuing education information to your counselor profile.
Executive Director/Program Manager Roles
Part of the HUD HECM roster application process includes having a manager at your counseling agency act as your Application Coordinator for FHA
. The application coordinator verifies your employment for HUD.
Once on the HUD HECM roster, you hold your roster status as a HECM counselor. The agency does not hold the roster status. You may work for more than one agency at a time, or you may change agencies at any time, and your roster status goes with you. However, you must keep your employment information up to date in FHA.