How fast can you get a real estate license?

How fast can you get a real estate license?


Getting a real estate license is a crucial step towards starting a career in the real estate industry. Many aspiring real estate professionals wonder how fast they can obtain their license and begin their journey in this field. In this article, we will explore the process of obtaining a real estate license and discuss the factors that can affect the timeline.

Educational Requirements

Pre-licensing education: The first step towards obtaining a real estate license is completing the required pre-licensing education. The number of hours required varies from state to state, ranging from around 60 to 180 hours. These courses cover various topics such as real estate principles, practices, contracts, and laws.

Delivery methods: The delivery methods for pre-licensing education can vary. Some states offer in-person classes, while others provide online courses. The availability of different delivery methods can impact the speed at which you can complete your education.

Self-paced learning: Online courses often allow students to learn at their own pace, which can be advantageous for those who wish to expedite the process. However, it is important to note that some states may have minimum time requirements for completing the courses, regardless of the delivery method.

Licensing Exam

Exam preparation: After completing the pre-licensing education, aspiring real estate professionals must prepare for the licensing exam. This involves reviewing the material covered in the courses and practicing sample questions. The time required for exam preparation can vary depending on the individual’s prior knowledge and study habits.

Exam scheduling: The licensing exam is typically administered by a state regulatory agency or a third-party testing provider. The availability of exam dates and locations can impact how quickly you can take the exam. Some states offer frequent exam dates, while others may have limited availability.

Exam content: The licensing exam usually consists of both national and state-specific sections. The national portion covers general real estate principles and practices, while the state-specific section focuses on local laws and regulations. It is important to study and prepare for both sections to increase your chances of passing the exam on your first attempt.

Licensing Application and Background Check

Application process: Once you have successfully passed the licensing exam, you will need to submit a licensing application to the appropriate state regulatory agency. The application process typically involves providing personal information, educational background, and any relevant work experience. Some states may also require fingerprinting and a background check.

Background check: The duration of the background check can vary depending on the state and the complexity of your background. It is important to disclose any criminal history or disciplinary actions, as failure to do so can result in delays or denial of your license application.

State Processing Time

State-specific processing time: Each state has its own processing time for reviewing and approving real estate license applications. This can range from a few weeks to several months. It is advisable to check with your state regulatory agency to get an estimate of the processing time.

Temporary licenses: In some states, temporary licenses may be available for individuals who have completed the education and exam requirements but are still waiting for their application to be processed. Temporary licenses allow you to start working in the real estate industry while waiting for your permanent license.


The time it takes to obtain a real estate license can vary depending on several factors, including the state’s educational requirements, exam scheduling, application process, and state processing time. While it is possible to expedite the process by completing the required education and exam preparation quickly, it is important to ensure that you have a solid understanding of the material to pass the licensing exam and succeed in your real estate career.


– National Association of Realtors:
– Real Estate Express:
– Kaplan Real Estate Education: