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  Applicant Handbook

CMC Exam Information...

Exam Format

The CMC is a four (4) hour computer based exam and contains 200 multiple-choice questions that fall within six subject-matter areas. Each subject-matter area is weighted to reflect its relative importance to the practice of a mortgage broker who has at least five (5) years of industry experience and specializes in residential mortgage lending. In addition, there are 30 pre-test items which do not affect your score but are being evaluated for future exams. Note: these pretest items are randomly scattered throughout the exam and are not identified as “pretest” questions. You should, therefore, answer each question as though it were a graded question.

To pass the CMC exam, you must answer at least 75% of the exam questions correctly.

Subject-Matter Area

% of Exam Content

# of Items


General Industry Knowledge



Product pricing; appraisals; automated underwriting; financial calculator; loan programs; financial statements; mortgage industry origin; transaction analysis; primary and secondary markets; tax laws; government agencies; development and construction lending; mortgage types

Business Practices and Ethics



Professionalism; business ethics and integrity; handling customer funds; customer/broker relationship; advertising business-to-business and business-to-consumer; contents to a wholesale agreement; fraud




Hazard, Mortgage, Title, and Builders’ insurance; Business

Laws and Compliance



Fraud; real estate law, Mortgage and regulatory compliance; real estate law

Residential Financing



Closing process and documentation; loan originating; pre-qualification process; underwriting procedures; post-closing; government agencies; client document evaluation; wholesale broker agreement; equity and non-conforming Lending




Knowledge of property types; origination process; assembling the package for the investor; basic terminology; different calculations; commercial loans; analyzing loan risks

 Preparing for the Exam

In preparing for the CMC®, familiarity with the material contained in the Residential Mortgage Lending course (offered by NAMB or state affiliates) and any other mortgage-related courses may be helpful. It may be helpful to review course offerings through the NAMB Education Department or other educational providers. Note: This exam does not measure skills or knowledge that would be gained by on-the-job experience. In addition, the following may be helpful as you prepare for the exam: 

  •  Review the Exam specifications and a study guide with sample questions are provided in this handbook. The sample questions are arranged in order of content area; however, on the exam, the questions are in random order. For best use of the materials provided review the following information:

ü       Answer all of the sample questions to see if there are any subject areas with which you have difficulty. You should review those subjects prior to taking the exam.


ü       Study the format of the sample questions; the exam questions will follow the same format. All of the questions are multiple-choice, will have only one correct answer, and can be answered independent of other questions. 

  • Register for the CRMS/CMC prep course designed to provide an intense learning experience for mortgage professionals who are planning to get certified.  For more information about the NAMB prep course click here.
  • Take a brush up course or attend a certification prep course. Several states currently offer prep courses to prepare for certification. Contact your State Association to find out if they will be offering a course soon.  
  • Before your scheduled exam date, make sure you review the Exam Checklist and know the location of the test site. Know the best way to get there, where parking can be found, and the location of the exam room.   

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