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Personal Finance Society
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The essential mortgages and equity release advice qualification

The level 3 Certificate in Equity Release meets the FCA’s requirement for mortgage advisers and those advising on equity release schemes. In addition to developing advisory skills, the Certificate offers an understanding of equity release regulation, products, market practice, and customer needs.

 

 

 

The Certificate provides an ideal next step for holders of the Certificate in Mortgage Advice, requiring completion of just one further unit.

Read the Certificate in Equity Release specification »


Who’s it for?

  • Those seeking to give mortgage and equity release advice
  • Anyone working in the mortgage and equity release market in non-advisory roles, for example, technical consultants or those in support roles


Recognition of prior learning

Before studying, check to see whether any of your previous academic qualifications or credits from other professional bodies and institutes can be carried towards completion of the Certificate.

Find out more about recognition of prior learning >


Completion requirements

The Certificate involves completion of three units from the Personal Finance qualifications framework, providing a minimum of 50 credits on completion.

See our key information link to the right of the page for details

Members are entitled to use the designation CertCII (MP & ER), subject to membership and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirements.


Assessment methods

Certificate level units are assessed by multiple-choice question exam (MCQ). For online MCQ exams, result notification is immediate on completion. For paper-based MCQ exams, results are released five weeks’ following the exam sitting.

Find out more about assessments, including policies and exam centres >


Learning support

Each qualification unit comes with the essential tools to support core learning. For a single fee, study packages typically include: study text, assessment entry and access to RevisionMate, our online study tool.

We also offer additional study materials to support individual learning. These range from key fact booklets and next-edition study texts, to question packs and Learn interactive tutorials.

For full unit availability, click the unit links to the right of this page.

Introduction

CII qualifications involve the completion of one or more units, each covering an individually assessed topic. Assessment methods vary and depend on a unit's level and subject matter.


Assessment methods include:

  • Multiple-choice exams - the assessment method for Award, Certificate, and financial services 'R0' Diploma units assessed in the UK. Exams are delivered on-screen at a network of over 40 public centres across the UK. Sittings are available year-round, often on a weekly basis.
  • Written exams - the assessment method for some Diploma and Advanced Diploma units and all units examined outside the UK. Sittings are typically available twice-yearly in April and October at over 50 public centres throughout the UK and over 100 public centres outside the UK.
  • Coursework assessment - available for a select number of Advanced Diploma in Insurance units and the financial services unit (J09) Paraplanning, coursework assessment involves the completion of three written assignments during a 12 month period.
  • Mixed assessment - Initially introduced for unit (P92) Insurance business and finance, this has been extended to units (P05) Insurance law, (P80) Underwriting practice, (P81) Insurance broking practice and (P85) Claims practice from April 2015 and and will be extended to all Diploma in Insurance units by April 2018 (unit codes begin with the letter M). This involves the successful completion of both a coursework assignment and a multiple-choice exam. This has an 18 month enrolment period.
  • Dissertation assessment - available for the Advanced Diploma unit 991 London market insurance specialisation. This involves the submission of a dissertation proposal and an 11,000 word dissertation. This has an 18 month enrolment period. This unit should only be taken by those who have access to the necessary information and people in the London Market.

Find out more

It is essential that candidates familiarise themselves with the guidelines and instructions which are shown on the CII website under the relevant units. In addition candidates should familiarise themselves with the coursework and dissertation policies as well as exam policies (before the assessment) and notes to results (after the assessment).

This qualification in detail

Key information

What does the qualification involve?

The Certificate comprises three core units from a choice of four from the Personal Finance qualifications framework, providing a minimum of 50 credits on completion.  

Candidates are required to take one of the following units:

  • (R01) Financial services, regulation and ethics, or
  • (CF1) UK financial services regulation and ethics

And units,

  • (CF6) Mortgage advice, and
  • (ER1) Equity release

There is no prescribed order in which units must be taken, but it is strongly recommended that you sit the cure unit first (R01 or CF1) first as these provide foundation knowledge upon which the others build.

For the unit syllabuses, return to the Certificate in Equity Release landing page where you will find the syllabus link at the top right of the page.

Unit overview:

Unit

Assessment method

Study hours*

Credits awarded

Unit level

 

 

 

 

 

(R01) Financial services, regulation and ethics

·         2-hour exam

·         100 multiple choice questions

·         65% nominal pass mark**

60

20

4

(CF1) UK financial services, regulation and ethics

·         2-hour exam

·         100 multiple choice questions

·         70% nominal pass mark**

60

15

3

(CF6) Mortgage advice

·         3-hour exam

·         100 multiple choice questions

·         5 case studies, each comprising 5 multiple choice questions

·          70% nominal pass mark**

70

20

4

(ER1) Equity release

·         2-hour exam

·         50 multiple choice questions

·         5 case studies each comprising 5 multiple choice questions

·         70% nominal pass mark**

70

15

3

Find out more about assessment methods, including exam policies and centres »

Units treated as equivalent

Due to the extent of syllabus overlap, certain combinations of current and withdrawn CII units will result in only one award of credits.

If a withdrawn equivalent is held you may not need to complete a current unit in order to satisfy a qualification's completion rules. Clarification should always be sought from CII Customer Service.

Find out more about credit awards for equivalent units »


*The recommended minimum study hours will vary depending on your experience and ability.

** The actual pass mark may vary from one session to another to ensure consistency in pass standards.

Assessment information

It is important that candidates entering for a CII assessment familiarise themselves with our service, in particular the rules and procedures that are in place.

Syllabuses

CF1 UK financial services, regulation and ethics

At the end of this unit, candidates should understand the:

  • purpose and structure of the UK financial services industry;
  • different financial asset classes and product types;
  • process of giving advice and the main areas covered;
  • ethics, regulatory processes, rules and legislation underpinning UK financial services;
  • use of the financial regulators' powers and responsibilities to protect the market's integrity and the impact on individuals and firms of these regulators' powers.

 

CF6 Mortgage advice

At the end of this unit, candidates should be able to understand the:

  • house buying process, from making an offer to completion and the key parties involved;
  • different types of borrowers and how to meet their individual mortgage needs;
  • different types of mortgage product and repayment options and their suitability for the client;
  • legislative and regulatory position of mortgages and the requirements of a mortgage adviser.

 

ER1 Equity release

At the end of this unit, candidates should be able to understand the:

  • principles of equity release and the types of schemes available;
  • suitability and affordability of the different types of equity release products;
  • risks to the consumer associated with equity release;
  • application of suitable equity solutions according to the circumstances of different customers.

 

R01 Financial services, regulation and ethics

At the end of this unit candidates will be able to demonstrate their knowledge, understanding and skill in applying the following topic areas:

  • UK financial service industry in its European and Global context;
  • how the retail customer is served by the financial service industry;
  • Regulatory framework, powers and responsibilities to protect the consumer;
  • the legal concepts and considerations relevant to financial advice;
  • the Code of Ethics and its impact on the business behaviours of individuals.