How to Get a Florida Real Estate License

Zev Freidus, Licensed Florida Agent7/15/2022
Florida seal
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Step 1: Take a Real Estate Course

In Florida, you must take 63-hours of a pre-licensing course. Don't worry though, there are lots of options, including many that are online.
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Step 2: File for Your License

This step is pretty self explanatory. You’ll need to fill out a few forms and pay a fee to file for your license on the state of Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) website.
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Step 3: Take the Exam

The test is a 100-question multiple-choice exam. There are 45 questions on real estate principles and practices, 45 questions cover Florida and Federal laws, and 10 questions require math calculations.
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Step 4: Find a Brokerage

Look for a reputable broker who you can feel comfortable working with. The broker you choose then must complete Form #RE 11 on your behalf and submit it to the DBPR website
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4 Steps to Get Your Florida Real Estate License

Step-By-Step Guide to Become a Licensed Real Estate Agent

There is no doubt about it, real estate is thriving in Florida. With such a hot market, it’s no wonder you’re looking at getting your Florida real estate license

It can get a little complex – trust us, we’ve been there. That’s why we’re here to break it down for you step by step. 

Step 1: Take the Pre-licensing Course 

In Florida, you must take 63-hours of a pre-licensing course. Don’t worry though, there are lots of options, including many that are online.

See Course Options
 

There is a breakdown of the best Florida real estate schools and how they compare to one another. We’ve ranked them for you based on affordability, difficulty, and reviews. Feel free to read what others who have taken the courses have to say about them.

Florida is different than most states, however. While the courses are designed to be self-paced, here you must finish the course within six months. So you’ll want to make sure you’re committed before purchasing a course. 

Compare Online Courses

Step 2: File for Your License 

This step is pretty self explanatory. You’ll need to fill out a few forms and pay a fee to file for your license on the state of Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) website.

This is when they will ask you to provide fingerprints that the Florida Real Estate Commission will use to make sure that all information you’ve provided is accurate.

They will run a background check and look into your criminal record, while making sure that you meet all of the requirements listed above.

It’s important that you don’t withhold any important information when filling out this form, because it could jeopardize your ability to get a license in the future.

This step should only take a few days, and then you are ready to move on.

Step 3: Take the Exam

Once you’ve filed for your license, you’ll have to take the Florida Real Estate Licensing Exam. This can take about 3.5 hours to complete. So, remember to fuel up on some brain food before heading in.

The test is a 100-question multiple-choice exam. There are 45 questions on real estate principles and practices, 45 questions cover Florida and Federal laws, and 10 questions require math calculations. You must score a 75% in order to pass.

Don’t put too much pressure on yourself, you can take the exam again if you don’t pass on the first try. You can apply again after 24 hours of taking the exam. It can be tricky, especially for those that flew through the course without paying too much attention.

Step 4: Find a Brokerage 

Passed your exam? Congrats! There are still a few more steps to activate your real estate license:

  1. Find a licensed Florida real estate broker who will sponsor you. Look for a reputable broker who you can feel comfortable working with. There’s nothing worse than unintentionally landing a terrible employer. Yikes
  2. The broker you choose then must complete Form #RE 11 on your behalf and submit it to the DBPR website (Less work on your part, woohoo)

You’ll get to choose a brokerage you like, that focuses on a niche you love, that has a company culture you love, and most importantly … has a good commission rate, so your paycheck is XL. Worried about finding a brokerage yourself? AgentAdvice helps with warm introductions to hiring brokerages if you sign-up for a class through us. Phew!

You have total freedom to choose your sponsoring broker. Here’s some things agents look at when choosing a brokerage:

  • Commission Rate – Look at each brokerage’s commission rate when you’re shopping around. If they’ve got a good rate, your commission checks will be larger than life. 💸
  • Niche – Maybe you want a brokerage that focuses on a niche on a location or a specific category of real estate like commercial retail, single family homes, or fixer-uppers. So if you have a specific interest you can find a broker who shares that interest.
  • Culture – Maybe the company’s culture is important to you. If so, get to know what they’re all about, how they work, and what’s important to them.

That’s all just to say that you have the freedom to choose a brokerage that fits you.

 

Mission Complete

sold signThose are the steps you need to get your Florida real estate license. Yes, you might have to trudge through paperwork, check boxes, file forms, burn the midnight oil, chug coffee … but after all that … you’ll have your license. We recommend printing it out on super-gloss and framing it. Leave some room next to it for your first commission check; A LOT of room!

That’s all folks! Once you make it through these steps you’ll have a brand new career ahead of you. If there’s anything we can do to help you make it through these steps please let us know. We’ve got pre-licensing classes, cram courses, and all sorts of resources to help.

FREC Requirements to get a real estate license

First off, what the heck is FREC? Simply put, they are the governing body overseeing all things real estate. The Florida Real Estate Commission (FREC) is in charge of setting industry guidelines and licensing requirements.

Before you pay for any courses, let’s first make sure you meet the general requirements set forth by the state. They are pretty simple, but we’ll go through them just in case.

  1. Must be 18 or older
  2. Must be a US citizen
  3. Must possess a high school diploma or equivalent. No college degree required!

 

How much does it cost to get a real estate license in Florida?counting money


The DBPR charges a flat fee of $83.75 for the license at the time of the application. However, it does not include the cost incurred for the courses required. The cost of the courses varies depending on the school you attend. Typically, both pre-licensing and post-licensing courses cost around $300.

Compare Prices
 

The full list of approved real estate schools is available on the DBPR website, and more information regarding the best ones, agents’ ratings of them, and current pricing are available on this site. You will also need to pay $36.75 for the state real estate agent exam. The fee is for one single exam and you will need a 75% score to pass. If you fail, you will get the opportunity to retake the exam but you need to pay again.

How long does it take to become a real estate agent in Florida?


man studying for licensing examIt depends on how soon you want it. Typically, the license will be issued within 7-10 business days after the DBPR approves the application. However, how fast you get to that approval phase entirely depends on you. 

For example, one way to accelerate the process would be to take the real estate courses required as soon as possible. An online class may help you complete faster since you’re primarily on your own schedule. Another way to get your license faster is to make sure you’ve prepared well for the exam so that you don’t need more than one attempt to pass it.  Most schools offer a “cram course” or “test prep course” to review all the material before you take the test – and it is highly recommended to take one of these. Please note that you will need to wait up to 30 days to retake the exam. This may waste a lot of time. 

It is also advisable to start building your networks in the real estate industry early enough to ensure you can find a sponsoring broker faster. On average, it shouldn’t take more than three months to get the license as long as you pass all the background checks and meet the requirements in the state.

 

How much do real estate agents make in Florida?


The average real estate agent in Florida makes $62,790. The top 90% can earn as much as $147,140.

Perspective from a real estate pro:

dennis bowers headshotDennis Bowers
Realtor in Naples, FL
The Bowers Group at Compass

“It all depends on your hustle. I recently sold a home in Naples for $5M in less than 2 months after it was on the market for 1,200 days with another agent. Great photography, marketing and our network brought in a local buyer. I ended up with that sale, not the previous agent.

I also earned a Top Producer award for Compass Florida. This is the second time that I have achieved this award. Selling $47 million individually and $77 million as a team, we ranked in the top 50 out of 1,200 agents for Compass in Florida.

But I had to work hard and hustle every single day to get to where I am now.”

Florida Real Estate License FAQs

There are some things on the test your courses may not have prepared you for. There may be tricky questions that you are not sure how to answer. You may become lost and stressed out which will set the tone for the entire test taking session. Remember: Exam prep is the best way to ensure a high score on the state exam.

So, we’ve made a list of the top Florida real estate exam prep providers:

  1. PrepAgent – Gives you access to live online group webinars, e-books, online training tools, and thousands of state-specific practice questions.
  2. Kaplan – This is the highest rated, and most popular test prep in the state.
  3. Mbition – Known to help prepare students for the math portion of the licensing exam.
  4. Real Estate Exam Scholar – Provides affordable tests to help simulate the exam-taking. experience
  5. AceableAgent – This is the most convenient test prep. Students can access it on the go using a mobile app.
  6. Real Estate Express – Students can prepare for the exam by talking to agents who are already licensed and experienced.

Beyond the general requirements outlined above, you are required to also complete 63 hours of approved pre-licensing training within 24 months of applying for your license. Applicants are also required to pass state-provided exams. You are required to get 75 out of 100 points to pass. There is also a real estate law exam that requires 30 out of 40 points to pass.

Yes, there is. The requirements needed for the two are very different. For example, to become a real estate agent in Florida, you are required to complete a 63-hour course. But those of you who wish to become real estate brokers will need to complete a 72-hour course.

Additionally, real estate agents are required to get an additional 45 hours of post-licensing training while brokers are required to have 60 hours. And finally, people wishing to get a broker license must have held an active real estate sales associate license for at least two years.

Brokers react as Compass gobbles up GlideAfter you have been practicing as an agent for 18-24 months, you are required to undertake post-licensing education. Luckily, classes are shorter this time around – only up to 45 hours of post-licensing training are needed for real estate agents. The training mostly covers licensing laws, federal and state housing laws, zoning, real estate taxes, investment analysis, and additional information that will be invaluable in your career.

Undertaking post-licensing courses is mandatory. Failure to do so will make your license void, and it will not be eligible for renewal. You will have to start your application all over again if the renewal date passes without posting the results of those exams.

However, these education programs should not be viewed as just a requirement for licensing. Learning in the real estate industry comes mostly from experience gained outside of the classroom. But having the right foundation will help you learn the ropes more quickly.

Yes, but not all states. In case you have a license issued from a different state, you may continue to provide agency services in Florida. However, Florida recognizes licenses from a handful of states. They include Nebraska, Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, and Connecticut. You will still need to apply for the Florida license, which includes taking the Florida real estate law portion of the test.  Thankfully, you don’t need to take the whole test. Fingerprints still must be submitted for background checks.

US map

If you want to be an agent, getting a license is the law.  It would, therefore, be illegal to provide real estate agent services in the state without a license. You can be sure that no broker will be willing to hire you without a license.  

Finally, the whole process of getting a license prepares you in some small way for the Florida real estate industry. The courses are vital in giving you the right background as an agent. These courses teach you the foundation of local real estate laws, taxes, how to analyze investments, and the ethical expectations of agents.  Once the classes are over, the real learning starts once you’re helping people buy and sell homes

woman doing virtual learningYes, applying for a license does not automatically lead to issuance. The Florida Real Estate Commission (FREC) has the right to deny license requests for several reasons. For example, if FREC determines that you have offered real estate agent services before without a license, they may reject your application and lock you out of future applications for a year. 

Additionally, people who had their licenses revoked for various violations in the past may not be eligible for a new license. Applicants with a criminal record may also be denied a license. The commission may also deny license applications if it determines there is enough evidence to suggest that applicants may have committed acts of fraud or engaged in severe breach of trust in the past.  And finally, your license may also be denied if you provide misleading personal information or incorrect data during the application process – so it’s crucial to be straightforward.

women studying for licensing examIf you believe that FREC denied your license application in error, you can file a complaint with FREC. Do not reapply for another license until the matter is resolved. The resolution process will help shed more light on why the license request was denied. 

You may also get additional information on how you can optimize your applications in the future to avoid a similar outcome. If there were serious violations reported during the application, you might not be able to apply for a license in Florida ever again. 

The ban could be permanent or temporary, depending on how the commission interprets the violations. The best way to avoid a possible denial is to make sure that you have met all the requirements set by the state. Take all the courses and exams needed, and make sure you pass. 

Becoming a real estate agent in Florida is possible for people who have the right information. It may take a few months, but once you get that license, a world of opportunities will open up for you. Well, the questions above should help you out in this process. If you have additional queries, or perhaps there is something you need us to clarify, feel free to get in touch.

florida state sealFlorida Real Estate Commission (FREC) is a government agency that regulates real estate licenses in Florida.

All members of FREC are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Florida Senate. While the primary task of the commission is to regulate licensing in the state, the agency also serves as the mediator for conflicts that come up in the real estate industry.  

Fun fact: FREC members are appointed for four-year terms, and at least one member must be at least 60 years of age.

About the Author

Zev is a licensed Florida real estate agent, and the founder and the qualifying broker of ZFC Real Estate, a boutique commercial and residential brokerage located in Boca Raton, Florida. Prior to ZFC, in 2005 Zev founded BEX Realty and grew it to 250 agents and over $20 Million in annual GCI. In 2014 he sold the company to a private equity group. After the sale, he stayed with the company and helped them roll out nationwide. In 2021 Zev resigned from BEX Realty so that he could create ZFC Real Estate. Zev first obtained his license in 2001 and has used Gold Coast School Of Real Estate for all of his Florida real estate license requirements.

Last Updated: 7/15/2022

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