There are many reasons to consider real estate as a career. There are also several facets of the real estate industry to consider when determining what you want to do with the rest of your life. On one hand there is investments. You can invest in real estate properties, fix them up and rent them out or sell them. On the other hand, however, you can become a real estate agent or broker. This can be a very rewarding path to take; helping people sell their house and on the flip side, helping people find their dream home.
Perhaps your dream has always been to work in real estate, maybe you just want to try something new, or maybe you are a single parent looking for a side hustle. Whatever the reason, if you wish to become a real estate agent, there are a few steps that you must take in order to become licensed in the US. Here are the steps needed to take.
The first step is very simple and you have most likely already completed it. Step one to beginning your real estate journey is an acute interest in this field. Since you are reading this, you obviously already have that. It is vastly important to have a deep interest in any career that you are considering. With the consideration that you will be performing this job for years to come, it is of the utmost importance to have an intense interest and a love for the journey that you embarking on. While the other steps are more complex and are entirely necessary, this step is by far the most important.
Step two is also quite simple as it has to do with age requirements. To become a licensed real estate agent you must be at least eighteen (18) years of age. Some states require that applicants be nineteen (19). Therefore, if you are over the age of eighteen (18) you are good to go. If you are in your eighteenth (18) year, your next step is checking your state’s age requirements. Finally, if you are under the age of eighteen (18), your next step is looking into classes and requirements in your area. Do not be discouraged if you do not yet meet the age requirements. This simply gives you more time to prepare for the time and expense of realizing your goals.
The third thing to consider is your current residency. What this means is that, if you wish to become licensed in the USA, you must be a current legal US resident. If you are not currently a resident, your next step is to begin (or complete) the process to become a resident. If you are a current and legal resident, you have completed this step and are ready to move on to the next one.
This fourth step is a bit more complicated. You must complete the necessary pre licensing education. One reason this step is more complex is because the regulations and requirements for pre licensing education varies based on what state you are residing in. I am sure that, at this point one of the considerations at the forefront of your mind is cost. Courses can cost anywhere from one hundred and ninety nine dollars ($199) to six hundred and ninety nine dollars ($699). Another consideration is the time that must be invested into these courses. Once again, each state has its own set of standards. Florida requires 63 hours of approved course work to be allowed to sit for the exam. New York's standard is seventy-five (75) hours. The requirements for other states are even lengthier.
Now, let's talk about the fifth step. After meeting all of the age and location requirements and completing all necessary education courses, you have come to the end of the line. You must take and pass your state's licensing exam. The fee for taking the exam, like most aspects of this process, varies. Generally speaking it is around sixty dollars ($60). Once you have passed the exam, you will be ready to file for your license.
The sixth and final step to becoming an official agent is to file for your license. There is a fee for filing and it varies, not only from state to state, but also depending if you want to be a salesperson/agent or are becoming a broker. For example, in the state of California the fee is two hundred and forty-five dollars ($245) for a salesperson/agent license and three hundred dollars ($300) for a broker license. In Texas, a two (2) year salesperson/agent license costs two hundred and five dollars ($205).
Depending on where you live, the process to becoming a licensed salesperson generally takes between one (1) and three (3) years to complete. Some states require that you spend a determined amount of time in the field, so to speak during your course work.
For some, the journey will end after becoming a licensed salesperson and finding a job. For others the journey will continue on through becoming a broker. Wherever your journey ends, you now have a detailed list of stops you will make along the way. Good luck!