Interested in getting Real Estate License

10 Replies

Hi, I'm Chris and live in the San Antonio area.  

I currently work full time in IT, however I was thinking about starting a side-hustle and that was purchasing real estate for passive income.  I will admit, I don't know much about doing this.  I've started to read blogs on this website along with Brandon Turner's book. 

I was thinking about making up for this lack of knowledge was to get a real estate license, to help me have a better understanding.  Just wondering how long it typically takes to get something like this and to maintain it?  Also would it be transferable if I were to move out of state, say to California?

thanks

Hi Chris,

I also work in IT and getting my real estate license. I just registered for three classes at my local California community college so I can be prepared to take the licensure exam. It's a great idea to get a license by taking classes either online at Kaplan or First Tuesday. You can start or finish as early as you want. Each state has its own laws so I'm not sure if it's transferrable. 

I was just looking at properties in TX to invest in! It's just so competitive here in CA.

Good luck :)

Hi Chris,

I'm not a real estate agent, but I also looked into these requirements.

Getting your real estate license and can be both time consuming and pricey. I decided to wait until I'm start doing more deals first before I get it. 

 Here's the info you're looking for. Real estate agent licensing is managed through the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC).  I beleive it's 180 hours of education courses before you take the test.

https://www.trec.texas.gov/become-licensed/sales-a...

https://www.trec.texas.gov/renew-license/real-esta...

Once you get your license, you'll also need to do 90 hours of Sales Apprentice Education (SAE) courses during your first two years. Those requirements only give you an inactive license though. In order to actually buy/sell real estate or get access to the MLS, you'll need to sign-up under a broker as one of their agents.

Brokers have varying fee schedules either based on a portion of your sales commissions (80/20 split), a flat fee ($500), or  a monthly fee ($300-ish)... or some combination of any of those features.

You might also need to join a Realtors association depending on which Multiple Listing Service (MLS) you're desiring access to. Here in San Antonio the big association is San Antonio Board of Realtors (SABOR) and I believe they use ConnectMLS. Association affiliation has it's own costs such as monthly dues to the association as well as fees to have access to the MLS.

http://realestate.sabor.com/pages/apply-for-member...

Here's what the cost breakdown looks like, based on my research:

Requirement Cost Frequency
180 Hours of pre-license courses $ 550.00 One time
Application for Inactive Sales Agent License $ 205.00 One time
Pearson VUE - Examination Fee $ 54.00 One Time
Fingerprint/Background Check Fee $ 39.75 One Time
90 Hours of SAE Courses $ 279.00 One Time
MLS Access $ 708.00 Per Year
Sabor, Nar, Tar Association Dues $ 300.00 Per Month (ish)
Broker Fees ?  


Based on my research, it would probably cost about $5,000 a year to maintain a license and MLS access... not including the time it takes to get the license. Hope that helps!

Maybe some registered agents can comment and give us both some feedback on what it's like from their perspective?

Updated about 3 years ago

Correction! SABOR fees are closer to $435 annually, not monthly. Thus total annual cost would be closer to ~2K annually.

Hi Chris,

I have been in cooperate for more than 10 years and obtain the RE license was one of my best decision I ever made.

Depends what you really want to do. You do need to get a license if you want to be an agent in Texas. Not necessary for investors but if you do have one, it will give some advantages in terms of data and market analysis.

@Kevin Castaneda

The annual costs to maintain your license are less than 1/2 that(+-$2200).  The Association dues are approx $300 annually not monthly

There is often a Groupon for the pre-licensing courses for less than $200

Cost of hanging your license with a broker very from a simple commission split to monthly desk fees

Thanks for your input, @Greg H. ! I misread the SABOR Association dues. They're "pro-rated monthly"... not monthly. Haha, that changes things significantly! I've updated the table and yep that fits with around your numbers.

The actual numbers can still be found in the websites I linked above.

Requirement Cost Frequency
180 Hours of pre-license courses $ 550.00 One time
Application for Inactive Sales Agent License $ 205.00 One time
Pearson VUE - Examination Fee $ 54.00 One Time
Fingerprint/Background Check Fee $ 39.75 One Time
90 Hours of SAE Courses $ 279.00 One Time
MLS Access $ 708.00 Per Year
Sabor, Nar, Tar Association Dues $ 435.00 Per Year
Broker Fees ? Monthly
Originally posted by @Kevin Castaneda :

@Jason Vo , How do the costs I listed compare with what you're paying for to keep your license active?

Kevin, that's a nice breakdown list BUT I have to say it depends. The actual cost just to maintain the RE license in Texas is $1,000.00 minimum, which is including your Local Association Membership fee (mine is HAR and it costs me $439.00/yearly), MLS fee, Supra fees, Continue Education fees. Those are bare minimum cost that you have to pay each year to keep your license active. No questions ask !!!!

Now, this cost will be vary and could be a lot more, depends on the Broker fees, your Local Association fees could be more or less based on the area, Professional designation fees if you have, Marketing cost, Office fees. 

I am a part-time agent, and investor so I keep my cost at the very minimum. Here is the link to my profile for reference: http://www.har.com/jason-vo/agent_DuyVo

Hope this would answer your questions.