Frequently Asked Questions> Real Estate License

How Long Does It Take to Get a Real Estate License?

It doesn’t take a few minutes, nor will it take several hours. You won’t be waiting for “some” days or a couple of weeks.

How long does it take to get a real estate license? Unfortunately, there is no exact numerical answer to this question. Getting a real estate license can take anywhere from two to six months.

The exact timeline is influenced by several factors, most of which depend on the licensee’s study and compliance journey.

Below is a detailed exposition of the key factors influencing this timeline – from class format and study habits to state processing times and licensing requirements. Let’s dive into understanding how different aspects, like in-person versus online classes or even your study habits, can impact how soon you become a licensed real estate agent.

Factors that Impact Timeline

There is no real estate agent or broker who has not spent time waiting for their license. Yours truly has also had a “side of the road” experience. During that time, I longed to understand the forces that led me there. What factors played a role, and how could I have improved them?

Class Format

I know what you are thinking; “how does my class format affect how soon I can get a license?”

Bear with me for a minute.

The first step to getting licensed is completing an approved course. For example, the Arizona Department of Real Estate requires students to complete a 90-hour online or in-person pre-licensing course.

I say: favor the online route over the in-person classes.

Studying online offers students a unique advantage to learn at their own pace. This flexibility can significantly improve applicants’ chances of completing coursework earlier than traditional in-person students.

For example, imagine two people embarking on the same educational journey. One enrolls in an in-person course, while the other chooses online education.

Our in-person student is bound by a fixed schedule, constrained by class timings, commuting hours, and even potential traffic jams. On the contrary, the online learner enjoys the freedom to study when it suits them, be it early morning before work or late at night after putting kids to bed.

By eliminating these additional stressors that come with physically attending classes,  travel time, and rigid schedules, the online student has more control over their learning process. They can dedicate this saved time towards studying more efficiently or delving deeper into subjects they find challenging.

This dynamic nature of self-paced learning often leads to quicker course completion compared to those tied down by traditional classroom constraints.

Pre-licensing Education Requirements

Let’s discuss the elephant in the room: your state’s pre-licensing education requirements. This has a great bearing on how long it takes to get your real estate license.

You must complete your pre-licensing course requirements before applying to take the real estate exam. The length of your course will determine how soon you can sit for the exam.

For example, Michigan requires a 40-hour pre-licensing course. If you were to tackle the course at a 10-hour-per-week pace, you would complete the course in 4 weeks. But if you have more time on your hands and set a 20-hour-per-week study schedule, you will have the course completed in only 2 weeks.

Residents of Texas, on the other hand, don’t have the privilege of two weeks. With a 180-hour course requirement, it may take applicants at least 4.5 weeks to complete at a 40-hour-per-week rate.

Study Habits and Exam Readiness

The second step to licensure is taking your state-approved test. If you hope to supercharge your licensing journey, then a first-attempt pass is likely your aim.

That means implementing effective study strategies to boost preparation. You see, it’s about more than the quantity of time invested but the quality. Consider a student who spends hours poring over textbooks without a clear strategy. They might end up feeling overwhelmed and underprepared despite their efforts.

But imagine the results that will follow another student who implements an organized study routine – setting specific goals for each session, taking regular breaks to avoid burnout, and reviewing material periodically to reinforce memory. This second student will likely excel on the test on their first attempt because they’ve studied smarter rather than harder.

The use of appropriate practice materials further amplifies this success rate. Let’s say you’re preparing for a state-specific exam; wouldn’t it be beneficial if your practice tests mirrored what you’d encounter on D-day?

That’s where our specialized resources come into play. We offer meticulously designed state-specific practice tests that simulate actual exam questions so that there are no surprises when you finally face the real exam.

But why stop at the general exams? Broaden your horizons with our latest math exam practices! These comprehensive resources cover a wide range of topics and question formats typically found in approved examinations. By familiarizing yourself with these questions, you enhance your readiness while boosting confidence levels.

Application Form Format

The type of application form that students choose to fill out can significantly impact the waiting duration. It’s a bit like choosing between taking a high-speed train or walking – both will get you there, but one is considerably faster. In this case, we’re talking about online applications versus mailed applications.

Submitting your application online is taking the high-speed train on a voyage to becoming a successful real estate agent, regardless of how long that success story takes to unfold. This is because online applications are processed faster than mailed applications.

Fulfilling Requirements

Real estate license applications don’t travel light. Every state has a set of additional data needed to process your application. These commonly include pre-licensing education completion certificates, background clearance forms, or fingerprint cards.

Submitting the wrong documents or failing to submit the required attachments can delay your application processing. For example, lack of course information is one of the factors that the California Department of Real Estate credits for processing delays.  

My pro tip: create a checklist. Before you hit that send button, intentionally review your application. Ensure that it carries all the required attachments.

State Processing Times

This a factor you and I have absolutely no control over. But play a pivotal role in shaping our licensing journey.

After you submit your application, accompanied by the attachments, the waiting game begins. Different real estate licensing agencies have varying processing time frames, so there is no precise number I could share.

My pro tip: check if there is an estimated timeframe on your portal. If your licensing agency has a “currently processing” window on their website, like California’s Department of Real Estate, this will be an excellent place to dig.

Develop a Game Plan

Every single goal is empty without an attack strategy. If you are committed to shortening your license wait time, then you are going to need a game plan.

Set a Target Timeline

Setting up a target timeline can serve as your personal GPS. Much like you need a GPS to embark on a cross-country road trip, you need a target timeline to achieve your licensing goals.

A target timeline outlines the steps needed to reach your goal, with specific dates assigned for each step. Think of it like this: What would that process look like if you were planning to bake bread from scratch for the first time and wanted to do so by next Sunday?

In the same way, if you plan to get your license in three months, what step would lead you there? What would your daily KPI be, and how do you ensure consistency?

A target timeline helps you manage expectations while ensuring every small yet critical task gets attention within your desired timeframe, making the journey less overwhelming.

Schedule Classes and Exams

A calendar isn’t merely a tool to track days or months; it’s essentially your roadmap that guides you through your learning process. Much like how travelers use maps to ensure they don’t miss must-see spots on their trips, applicants should utilize calendars as their navigational tools throughout their academic journeys.

Think of your licensing journey as a road trip. You have your final destination in mind, but there are several pit stops along the way – attending lessons, filling out the application form, and preparing for exams, that can’t be missed.

This is where using a calendar becomes incredibly useful. Whether you use a digital calendar or a physical one hanging in your room, let it be your planner. Furnish it with lesson dates, important exams, and application deadlines.

My Pro Tip: Use stickers to mark out dates and make definite distinctions between lessons and exams.

Allow for Buffer Time

If there is one thing being a mom has taught me, it is to expect the unexpected. The journey to licensing is riddled with unpredictable factors.

You may complete the required coursework on the date you expected or, for some reason, need to reschedule your exam; either way, it is essential to include a buffer time when pursuing licensing.

By estimating potential setbacks and including them in your game plan, you prepare yourself for any possible hiccups.

A buffer time gives you wiggle room when things don’t go as planned. Life has its own rhythm that we cannot control despite our best efforts at planning every minute. Embrace this uncertainty, expect the unexpected, and allow room for life’s surprises along the way.

Achieve Your Licensing Dreams

How long does it take to get a real estate license? It may take 2-6 months. The actual timeline is subject to factors like education format, study habits, application processing, and meeting licensing requirements.

The journey to becoming a licensed real estate agent is not a sprint but a marathon. It requires careful planning and strategic execution. We cannot control how quickly authorities review applications once they’ve been submitted, but we do hold power over factors that influence overall timelines.

Try out the steps we’ve recommended above, and let us know how they worked out for you!

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