How to Get Your Florida Real Estate License
Getting your Real Estate License can be an exciting and educational process, but if you're feeling frustrated and a bit lost then you might just live in the state of Florida. I recently obtained my Florida Real Estate license and found myself spending as much time researching the process as I did studying actual Real Estate! This Hub should be your one-stop information guide on how to get licensed and the approximate fees you should expect to pay.
The first step I would suggest is to make sure you understand what you're getting yourself into. I would recommend reading The Truth About Being a Real Estate Agent, which should help debunk some Real Estate myths and give you a better idea of what you're signing yourself up for.
OK, so let's get into it. The two sites you will need to bookmark are The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation and Pearson Vue. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, or "FL DBPR" for short, is where you will need to begin your application process. They regulate all licensed professions in Florida and have recently updated their site. They were just beginning the online application process when I started and it was a royal disaster to find anything on their site. Pearson Vue is where you will take your state exam and where you might want to get your finger prints taken.
To get started, you must be 18 years old, have a social security number and have either a high school diploma or its equivalent. The fee from the state is $105. From there you will need to get your finger prints taken and sign up for your 63-hour pre-licensing class. You can find Real Estate Schools that teach online classes or you can find classroom classes. You should choose based on how you like to learn. I personally took my classes online with Real Estate Express because I was between cities at the time. You can find a list of state-approved classes here and you can expect to spend anywhere from $150-300 or more on your pre-licensing class.
Getting your finger prints taken is a very quick and painless process (if you have nothing to hide, I suppose) and you will have to pay at least $43.25 for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to process your fingerprints. Most places will add a service charge and at Pearson Vue, you'll pay $57.25 total. You do have many options for finger printing but I liked going to Pearson Vue because you will have to take your State exam there and it always helps ease your nerves to know where you're going.
Once you complete your pre-licensing class and the finger prints have processed, you can now apply to take your exam. Your application should be complete by this point will last for two years from the time your full application is received. There is one last fee at Pearson Vue to take the exam and that should be about $31.50.
If you don't pass, you will need to pay the $31.50 for each exam you take. I hate to admit it, but it took me two tries myself. I've heard tons of statistics about the fail rate in Florida (anywhere from half to 70% on the first try). I don't say this to scare you, but once you're already $300 into the process, you should really invest the time in making sure you know the material. Real Estate Express actually had a great studying tool (that I unfortunately found the day of the exam). It was basically twenty some odd practice exams, which help you more than you know. Some people will take a weekend crash course or study session, but those can run you another couple hundred dollars.
If you're serious about Real Estate and making this your career path, then DO NOT GIVE UP. No one likes failing, as a recent college graduate I thought it would be easy since I had been taking exams for 4 years. I was ashamed and cut myself off from friends and family for a week, but I devoted that week to psychotically studying and passed within about 9 days of my first exam (I had gotten a 70 and you need a 75 to pass).
It's very doable, I knew all the information the first time around but with Real Estate there is a ton of "gray area" and the test itself is very "choose the best answer" not "choose the right answer" (there will be 3 correct answers, but one is the MOST correct) so practice tests are very helpful. If you need any other tips or tricks, feel free to comment!
P.S. If you like this article, you should check out my real estate site www.findmyperfectagent.com