Frequently Asked Questions

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HECM Exam

Will I automatically be added to the HUD HECM roster once I pass the exam?

No. You must apply for the roster.

Can I still apply for the roster even if I passed the exam more than three years ago?

When the roster first became effective (September 2009), counselors who had taken the exam any time prior to that date of the regulation (September 2009) did not have to retake the exam to apply and be placed on the HECM Counselor Roster.   At this time (2015), however, all counselors who wish to be placed on the Roster must have taken and passed the exam no more than 3 years prior to application.

Why do I get an error message telling me that there are no exam records on file when I try to register for the Roster? I took and passed the HECM exam.

 If you took the exam less than 7 days ago, please wait a few additional days before applying to the HUD HECM roster. It takes a few days for your exam results to reach HUD. If you took the exam more than 7 days ago, the problem may be that the information you are providing to FHA Connection does not match the information you provided at the time you registered for your exam.  Contact hecmexam_support@pavrsoftware.com to validate your exam data.

What if I want to cancel my exam registration altogether?

See the Help tab on www.hecmexam.org.  For further information, contact PAVR Software Solutions at   hecmexam_support@pavrsoftware.com.

Should I submit proof that I passed the HECM exam?

No, HUD receives this information directly from the test administrator.  

Can counselors employed by HUD-approved counseling agencies who have not attended HECM training take the HECM counselor exam and, if they achieve the qualifying score, be eligible for the HUD HECM Counselor Roster?

No. In order to register via FHA Connection, counselors will be required to show proof that they have attended some kind of approved HECM-related training within the last 2 years, in addition to passing the exam.  Note, however, that this training can be as brief as a webinar; it does not have to be a classroom-based course.  On the other hand, the success rate for examinees who have taken a comprehensive HECM course such as HO111 is likely to be much higher.

How often do I have to take the HUD HECM exam?

To remain an active HECM counselor, you must take the exam once every three (3) years.

To pay for my exam I need a credit card. But I don't have one and neither does my agency. How can I pay for the exam?

The exam administrator, PAVR Software Solutions, requires payment by credit card (MasterCard, Visa, Discover, or American Express) to register for the exam.  If you do not have a regular credit card, you could purchase a prepaid card and use that, or use a bank debit card that carries the Visa symbol. 

Does the HUD HECM exam change?

Yes, periodically the exam content changes due to industry changes. However, it does not change every time there is an industry change.  Changes will be announced on the hecmexam.org website, which is maintained by the test administrator.  

Do you provide test-prep training for this exam?

NeighborWorks does not offer a training course for HECM Exam preparation. However, we have a variety of tools available to aid in study, including a list of exam topics, study materials, and a practice exam.

How can I find out when the HUD HECM exam was last updated?

The most recent HECM exam publication date is provided on the HECMExam.org website, maintained by PAVR Software Solutions.

Where can I find a sample exam?

You can find a link to sample exams on this website in the HECM exam area.

What is a considered a passing grade on the HUD HECM exam?

 A passing grade is 80%. 

Where can I find study materials?

You can find study materials on this website in the HECM exam area.

How often can I take the HUD HECM exam?

You can take the HUD HECM exam as many times as necessary to achieve the required score.  After you have successfully completed the exam, you are required to retake the exam every three years in order to retain your active status on the HUD HECM Counselor Roster.

What if I have trouble at any point during the Exam Registration process? Who can I contact?

If you have problems with the registration system,  contact the exam administrator, PAVR Software Solutions at hecmexam_support@pavrsoftware.com.  If you have questions about study materials, email NeighborWorks America at hecminfo@nw.org

How much does the HUD HECM exam cost?

The HUD HECM exam costs $100.

When will I know my score?

Immediately following the completion of the exam, your score will be shown on the screen.  You will not receive a certificate.  The data is sent to HUD and the records are kept electronically.

Is the HECM exam a NeighborWorks exam?

No. It is HUD’s exam. It is administered by PAVR Software Solutions.

Do I have to work for a HUD approved counseling agency to take the HUD HECM exam?

No. You can take the exam without being employed at a HUD approved agency. However, when registering you must follow specific instructions. When registering, the system will require you to list an agency name and HUD agency ID number. If you are not yet employed at an agency, HUD has indicated test takers enter “No Agency” as a place holder for the agency field, and enter “80000” as a place holder for HUD agency ID number field.

I have taken the exam a number of times, and cannot pass. What can I do?

The exam is challenging and requires a good amount of studying. Be sure you’ve read through and studied all the Study Materials provided on this site. Take the Sample Exam  a few times, making note of topics that you find difficult.  Also review the Exam Topics: What You Need to Know  to make sure you’ve reviewed all the important topics. You can read and review the HUD HECM Handbook and the HECM Counseling protocol, along with the HO111 training manual NeighborWorks makes available for those studying for the exam.

When I am registering for the HUD HECM exam, what email address should I use?

The email address must be a professional, active email that the registrant uses daily.  Otherwise, the exam administrator and/or HUD will not be able to communicate with you.

What will happen once I pass the HUD HECM exam?

The HUD HECM exam results are submitted to HUD once a week. At that time, HUD processes the results.  When you apply for the HUD HECM roster, your exam results will be on file with HUD.  You are not required to provide proof that you successfully completed the exam.

HECM Training

Does NeighborWorks offer any classes on HUD HECM roster requirements?

Yes.  NeighborWorks offers HO272: HECM Basics for Decision Makers. It is a one day classroom course designed to help counselors and managers navigate HUD HECM processes and procedures.

Do I have to take an exam at the end of the HECM training courses?

NeighborWorks HECM classroom training courses do not include an exam at the end of the course. However, eLearning courses do have an exam component and you must pass to receive the certificate. The system gives you four chances to pass the exam.

Who decides HECM training requirements?

HUD mandates how often HECM counselors must take HECM training, and what courses qualify as accepted HECM training.

I want to become a HECM counselor. What HECM training courses does NeighborWorks offer?

A full list of course names and descriptions can be found on this site, under NeighborWorks HECM Training.

Where can I go to find out what training I need to become a HECM counselor?

This website provides an overview of the HUD HECM roster requirements, as well as a full list of the training courses NeighborWorks offers.  

Where can I find the HUD HECM Handbook and the HUD HECM Counseling protocol?

The HUD HECM Handbook and the HECM counseling protocol can be found on HUD’s website or within the Resources section of this website.  Note that the copy of the protocol on HUD's website is missing the attachments containing important resources for counselors.  The copy on this site does contain those sections.

How long does it take to complete a NeighborWorks eLearning course?

eLearning courses generally take 2 – 4 hours to complete; depending upon how much time you spend exploring the additional course resources. From the date you purchase the course, you will have 60 days to complete it and pass the exam. The system will give you four chances to pass the eLearning course exam in order to print out your certificate of completion.

Do I get a certificate when I complete a NeighborWorks training course?

Yes, completing each NeighborWorks training course will earn you a training certificate. For eLearning classes, you must pass the exam at the end of the course. For classroom courses, you must be present for the entirety of the class.

If I take a NeighborWorks training course will I be ready to take the HECM exam?

At this current time, NeighborWorks does not offer any specific courses for HECM exam preparation.  HO111 is the most comprehensive HECM course offered by NeighborWorks, and it is aimed at new counselors.  However, most new counselors still need to put in substantial study time before taking the exam. 

I viewed a recorded webinar session NeighborWorks posted. Can I get a certificate?

No. Viewing previously recorded webinars will not earn you a certificate.  If you participate in live webinars through NeighborWorks' eClassroom Express series, you will receive a certificate after you pass the quiz given after the webinar.  

What is the training division's contact information?

NeighborWorks America Training Division

999 North Capitol St., NE, Suite 900

Washington, DC 20002

Email: nti@nw.org

Phone: (800) 438-5547, (202) 220-2454
Fax: (202) 376-2168

Are there scholarships available for NeighborWorks Training Institutes (NTI’s) and other courses? If so, how do I apply?

Yes, each training event NeighborWorks offers has scholarships available. Please see the NeighborWorks Scholarship page to apply.

Who do I contact regarding HECM training courses?
How do I find out where the next NeighborWorks Training Institutes (NTI’s) are?

By visiting NeighborWorks’ in-person training opportunities page, you will see where the upcoming NTI’s are being held. You can also use our Training Events Calendar to search by Upcoming Event.

Does NeighborWorks offer a HECM Certification?

No. NeighborWorks offers training and technical assistance to HECM counselors and those wishing to become HECM counselors. However, HUD ‘certifies’ HECM counselors through the HUD HECM roster system. In order to be an authorized HUD HECM counselor, you must be on the roster. NeighborWorks does offer certifications in other areas, such as Pre-Purchase Homeownership Education, Foreclosure Intervention and Default Counseling, and more.

How do I register for a NeighborWorks Training Institute (NTI)?

Using NeighborWorks’ online registration system, you can register for upcoming NTI’s.

How do I find out where the next Place-Based Trainings (PBT’s) are?

You can also use NeighborWorks' Training Events Calendar to see a list of upcoming training events.  Note that some PBTs are paid for by a specific organization and are open by invitation only.

How do I register for a Place-Based Training (PBT)?

You can register for upcoming PBT’s that are open to all using NeighborWorks’ online registration system.  Some PBTs are limited to members of a particular group.

How do I register for an eLearning course?

Using NeighborWorks’ online registration system, you can register for online learning courses as well as in-person courses.

 

If you haven't registered for a NeighborWorks course online before, you'll need to first fill out a profile and obtain a user name and password. The online user profile requires that each person use a unique email address as their login that cannot be used by anyone else. Within minutes, you’ll get an e-mail with a temporary password and a link with instructions to log back into your online user account, where you will be prompted to reset your temporary password with a permanent password of your choosing.)

 

Enter your user name and password and your online learning home page will open. From this page you can register for an online course or any of the NeighborWorks public events.

 

  1. Select the option for the type of course you want to take, 
  2. Click on "Register Now" next to the course you want to take.
  3. Then select the check box under the Select column for your desired course.
  4. If you have a discount code for the course, input the code in the box on the right. By entering a code, you will see the course price adjust to the discounted rate after you click "Next."
  5. On the payment page, you will be required to submit course payment in full by credit card (Visa, MasterCard or American Express) to complete your course enrollment.
  6. Once your full payment is confirmed, you'll receive an email with a link and instructions to log in to the course. Please print this page for your records as proof of payment.
If I have problems logging into my Online NeighborWorks Training Registration, who can I contact?

For questions during this registration process, use the Registration Assistance link.

Do I have to be employed at a HUD approved agency to take a HECM training course?

No. Anyone can take a NeighborWorks HECM training course.   

Where can I get course descriptions for each HECM training course?

Course descriptions for all HECM NeighborWorks Training courses are under the Financial Capability, Housing Education and Counseling category in the Course Catalog. Direct links to each HECM course description can be found on the NeighborWorks HECM Training page.

On average, how many people are enrolled in each HECM classroom training course?

Course enrollment ranges from 10-40 participants per course.

Continuing Education

If I want to find out if a certain course satisfies the continuing education requirement, who can I ask?

The following NW courses can be used to satisfy the continuing education requirement for the HUD HECM Counselor Roster:

  • In Person: HO111, HO272, HO275, HO278
  • E-Learning (self-paced online learning): HO104el, HO102el, HO109el, HO130el
  • E-Classroom Express (webinars): HO009WT, HO011WT, HO013WT
  • Virtual Classroom (interactive online learning): HO365vc

 All are described further on the HECM Training page. If you have a question about a course that is not offered by NeighborWorks, you can email housing.counseling@hud.gov .   

How do I stay up to date on HUD rules and requirements?

To stay current on HUD rules and requirements, read all HECM related Mortgagee letters as they are published.  A good way to know when new Mortgagee Letters are announced is to subscribe to the Single Family FHA INFO e-mail list.   It is also helpful to follow Reverse Mortgage Daily, which is a reverse mortgage industry blog that keeps abreast of changes as they are announced.  

I am on the HUD HECM roster. How often do I have to take a training course?

To remain active on the HUD HECM roster, you must take one qualifying HECM training course every two (2) years.

What courses can I take that qualify as continuing education to stay current on the HUD HECM roster?

A list of qualifying courses in listed in the NeighborWorks HECM training area of this website.

Once I’ve completed my training, how do I update my information with HUD?
Some of my personal information has changed, such as my name, agency, address, phone number, etc. What do I need to do to stay current on the HUD HECM roster?
Can I get a discount code for any of the online learning courses? How?

There are sometimes discount codes available for eligible counselors for certain online learning courses.  Have your supervisor email hecminfo@nw.org with your name, agency name, and HUD Agency ID number to find out if you are eligible.

How can I find out when I was placed on the HUD HECM roster?

If you search for your agency  through HUD’s online HECM counselor search tool, and click on your agency's name in the search results, it shows the names of all HECM roster counselors in your agency and when each was added to the roster.

I’m having a hard time uploading my training certificates into FHA Connection. Who can help me?
I only have a hard copy of my training certificate. How can I upload it into FHA Connection?

You can only upload PDF’s into FHA connection. Therefore you must scan and save the hard copy of your certificates.

Other

Other Resources

On this site we offer answers to the most frequently asked questions about HECM training, the HECM exam, and continuing education.  If you have questions about the HECM program, the product itself or counseling questions, please use the Forums to discuss with your fellow counselors, or use our Ask the Expert tool to get an answer.  You may also wish to contact the following resources.