Certification Exam Overview

HUDHousingCounselors.com partners with Kryterion Inc. to provide exam proctoring services online and at test centers. HUD test takers can only access Kryterion's Webassessor site through HUDHousingCounselors.com.

Please contact Kryterion Support if you need assistance to launch the online exam.

Development Standards

The certification examination was developed according to professional standards recognized by the testing industry and designed and constructed to be free from bias and measure only approved examination content. The following steps were taken to achieve these goals:

  1. Test content was defined by a diverse panel of subject matter experts who determined the knowledge and skills required to perform the services of a competent housing counselor regardless of the counselor’s cultural background or socioeconomic status. Test content is periodically updated by diverse groups of subject matter experts trained to write, review, and/or edit effective test items and to avoid potential bias.
  2. Subject matter experts are intentionally selected to represent a culturally and geographically diverse cross-section of the housing counseling profession. Under the guidance of a psychometrician, subject matter experts are trained to recognize potential sources for bias; to consider the appropriateness of the question subject matter; and to assess the clarity of the language used to ensure that potential bias was avoided, including cultural and linguistic bias.

Certification Requirements

Certification Requirements

Housing counseling required by HUD programs must be provided only by certified housing counselors who work for organizations approved to participate in HUD's Housing Counseling Program.

In order to be certified, an individual must:

  1. Pass a standardized written examination covering six major topic areas.
  2. Work for an agency approved to participate in HUD's housing counseling program.

Note: You can take the certification exam without being employed at a HUD-approved agency, but to become certified, you must pass the exam and work for a HUD-approved agency.

Training - Access & Requirement for Certification

Completion of training is optional and is not required to become certified. However, to increase certification exam passing rates, candidates are highly encouraged to study the course content.

To access the training, you must be signed into your account on HUDHousingCounselors.com.

Once you are signed in, select “Training Center” at the top of the page. If you are already signed in, you can access the Training Center launch page directly.

Training is available to anyone who creates an account. You can choose from two study methods: an interactive online training course or a downloadable Study Guide in PDF format.


See Housing Counseling: New Certification Requirements Final Rule on the HUD Exchange for more information. On August 5, 2020, HUD published an Interim Final Rule on the Federal Register website to announce a delay in the deadline for housing counselors to become HUD certified. The new final compliance date was August 1, 2021.

Review Managing Certification After the Final Compliance Date and HUD Exchange FAQs related to compliance for more information.


There is no limit on retakes for the Certification Exam. However, each retake must be purchased at the stated exam fee. You can take the Certification Exam as many times as necessary to achieve a passing score. If you receive a notice about maximum attempts, please call 210-489-1461. Hours of operation are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time Monday–Friday except Federal holidays.

Exam Options

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Understanding the role of Agencies

The role of the HUD participating housing counseling agency in HUD Certified Housing Counselor Application Process is to verify counselor employment in FHA Connection and to update FHA Connection when counselor employment status changes.