South Carolina Real Estate License Guide

Quick Facts

south carolina real estate commission logo

South Carolina Estate Governing Body:

South Carolina Real Estate Commission

PreLicensing Requirements:

90 Hours

СЕ Requirements:

10 Hours

Read more below

How to Get a South Carolina Real Estate License

pass ratesThe process of getting a real estate license in South Carolina is pretty straightforward. The three basic requirements to be eligible for a real estate license in South Carolina are:

  • Be over the age of 18
  • Have a high school diploma or certificate of equivalency
  • Be lawfully present and eligible to work in the United States

The next steps towards earning a real estate salesperson license are: 

  • You must complete a 60-hour Commission approved prelicensing education course – Unit I sales
  • As of July 1, 2020, all applicants for initial Salesperson licensure with the South Carolina Real Estate Commission will be required to obtain state and national fingerprint-based criminal records checks from the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). You need to do this before applying to take the licensure exam
  • Once you finish the Unit I course and go through a background check, you can apply to take the South Carolina real estate examination.
  • After you pass the exam, but before you apply for your license, you would also be required to complete an additional 30-hour Unit II: Advanced Real Estate Principles course.

You need to submit your passing score sheets and proof of completion of the Unit II course along with your License Application. 

To have an active license, you need to have a supervising broker. If you don’t have one, you will need to indicate that on your license application, and your license will be placed in “inactive” status until you activate under a supervising in charge licensee.

Compare South Carolina Real Estate Schools

aa-trophy-smallWant to see the full, in depth editor reviews for each school? Check out our 100% free guide to the best real estate schools in South Carolina (includes the latest 2021 pricing, reviews, pass rates, and more).


Here’s the quick take:

SchoolReviewsEditor's ScorePricing
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 54 reviews

A $
The CE Shop
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 56 reviews

A $$
aceableagent logo
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 47 reviews

B+ $$$
Exceed Logo
Exceed Real Estate School
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 5 reviews

B $$$
Real Estate Express
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • half star
  • full star

based on 81 reviews

B- $$
kaplan logo
Kaplan Real Estate Education
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 36 reviews

B- $$$

South Carolina Real Estate Licensing FAQs

man studying for licensing examPassing the real estate exam in South Carolina requires time and dedication as in any other state, and if you work hard enough in your career, you will earn a good income.

To pass the exam, you will need to study hard and pay attention to what is discussed in the prelicensing courses. Some tips that will help you increase your chances of passing on the first try are: 

  • Review the pre-license course material and focus on the topics listed in the examination content outline.
  • Take notes on what you study. Underline or highlight key ideas that will help with a later review.
  • Study frequently, for periods of about 45 to 60 minutes

The remaining process doesn’t require a lot of effort. You need to submit to a fingerprint scan and fill out the remaining paperwork to obtain a license. 

If needed, you can always take a prep course to guide and help you focus on the things that help applicants pass the exam more easily.

small group of students studyingThe most time-consuming part of the real estate licensing process in South Carolina is the licensing courses. The first part, Unit I lasts for 60 hours and is usually finished in about two months, depending on your availability and concentration. 

After you submit your fingerprints for a background check, they will be processed in 3 days. 

The exam applications are processed as they are received, with the usual processing time being around 5-7 business days.

Once your application has been approved, you can schedule the exam, which is done on a first-come, first-serve basis. You will be scheduled based on the seating availability at the center of your choice.

After this, the remaining is up to you. You need to pass the exam within one year, the period of time for which your eligibility is valid.

pexels-karolina-grabowska-4968651Agents in South Carolina earn $50,160 per year on average. The annual 90th percentile wage, on the other hand, or the amount the top 10% of agents in South Carolina earn is $83,620. 

The metro area with the highest average annual wage for real estate agents and the one where top agents get paid the most at the same time is the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort metro area. The average annual wage of real estate agents is $59,100, while the best agents in this area can earn $152,650 or more; one of the highest salaries in all US.

south carolina real estate commission logoThe Real Estate Commission regulates Real Estate Brokers, Salespersons and Property Managers across the State of South Carolina.

SC LLR oversees the Commission and can assist you with exam information and materials, continuing education requirements and opportunities, licensure applications and renewals, board information, and more.

They also focus on course delivery, making sure to prepare and write the state portion of the exam to prepare students for any local real estate laws they may encounter.

SCREC recognizes the qualifications of licensees of other jurisdictions from the US. However, a licensee from another state must still apply for and take the South Carolina portion of the real estate examination. 

With your examination application, you will need to submit your licensure certifications from any jurisdiction in which you have held licensure in the past five years. You must also have been licensed in another state six months before applying for a South Carolina real estate license.

signing contractResident applicants with licenses in other jurisdictions who have been residents of South Carolina for more than six months will need to take the following prelicensing education:

  • Salesperson exam applicants (South Carolina resident for more than six months with a license in another jurisdiction) will have to take Unit II: Advanced Real Estate Principles class (30 hours)
  • Broker exam applicants (South Carolina resident for more than six months) with a broker license in another jurisdiction will have to take Broker Unit IIIA and Broker Unit IIIB classes (60 hours)

The current fees that you will be required to pay to obtain a South Carolina real estate license are: 

  • Exam Application Fee: $25
  • Examination administration fee: $63 for both portions and $55 for one.
  • New Salesperson License: $50
  • Renewal of a Salesperson License: $45

In addition to these fees, the Unit II course developer must submit two – 20 item examinations with each course. There is a fee of $100.00 to evaluate each Unit II Module. 

Prelicensing courses prices go from $200 and up depending on the provider you choose. Keep in mind that each education provider offers different services and features, so make sure you do your research before you settle for a specific school. 

Besides the costs we’ve just mentioned, you should also consider tutoring costs, any prep courses you may enroll to, study materials, and other costs to obtain your documentation and pass your licensing exam. 

The South Carolina Real Estate Salesperson Prelicensing Curriculum, known as “Unit I,” comprises the following Sections:

  • Real Property
  • Governmental Controls and Laws Affecting Real Estate 
  • Pricing of Real Properties 
  • Real Estate Finance
  • Settlement/Closing
  • Agency and other brokerage relationships 
  • Contracts
  • Ethics 

The second part of the course, Advanced Real Estate Principles, or better known as “Unit II,” teaches the following topics:

  • Agency and Property Disclosure
  • Real Estate Contracts
  • Ethics and Real Estate
  • Measurements and Valuation
  • Real Estate Specialty Topics (one of the following):
    • Fair Housing
    • Finance
    • Investments and Taxation
    • Property Management
    • Commercial Real Estate
    • Closing Process and Procedures
    • Elements of Construction
    • Consumer Beneficial Real Estate Technology

Currently, only a high school diploma is required to be eligible to earn a real estate license in South Carolina. There are no college degree requirements. 

However, if you have a law degree or a four-year baccalaureate degree from a higher education institution with a major in real estate, you do not have to take prelicensing courses for any license or meet the experience requirements for Brokers.