How to get a Texas Real Estate License

Need to get your Texas real estate license? You're in the right spot. In this guide, we've included everything you need to know about becoming getting your Texas Real Estate license - including the best schools you can attend to get your license.

Real Estate Express

Real Estate Express
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4.06/5

based on 53 reviews

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T.S.

The layout content and questions were very good. It pretty much covered the whole class, and it was closely similar to the actual exams. If it weren't for the test prep, I think it would've been very difficult having to refer back to the whole curriculum to study for the exams.

RealEstateU

RealEstateU
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4.19/5

based on 47 reviews

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Bailey

It was convenient while going to school and working a real estate side job. With the schedule I had, I could not go to an in-person class with working and going to college. You do need to pay attention to the state material because the state portion seems to be a lot harder than the national exam. It was a great class, and I would recommend to people who have a busy schedule as I did.

AceableAgent

AceableAgent
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4.17/5

based on 29 reviews

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AceableAgent Customer

For the most part, I did feel prepared for the state exam. It does need a little bit of improvement, only because there was some information in the exams that were not covered in the courses. I did pass on my first attempts, so there is only a little improvement needed.

The CE Shop

The CE Shop
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4.16/5

based on 37 reviews

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CK

I thought the test prep was really good. I felt like it portrayed the actual exams as best as they could without violating the state restrictions. I had failed my first time thinking I was prepared, but for the second time, I was able to see the questions I got wrong and study those sections. I did pass my second time around, thanks to the test prep. I highly recommend it.

360 Training

360 Training
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3.64/5

based on 28 reviews

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360 Training Customer

I thought the test prep was very helpful. It basically was a summary of the longer course, so it made it a lot easier to study than having to go back and look for certain parts. It was very well structured.

Champions School of Real Estate

Champions School of Real Estate
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4.83/5

based on 41 reviews

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B.M.

My friend was the one who recommended Champions for test prep, and I'm so glad she did. It was way more down to earth than the first test prep I studied and consisted of scenarios on how it applies to everything. Absolutely everything we needed to know was on it.

Kaplan Real Estate Education

Kaplan Real Estate Education
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4.43/5

based on 28 reviews

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Could stand for improvement

Kaitie

I opted for Kaplan’s online real estate education. I want to start by saying I loved Rolfe Kurtyka in the online lectures--I found him to be invaluable and a great educator. However, I experienced bad communication from the more local course contacts right off the bat, that got me off to an unfortunate start--I read 1.5 textbooks I shouldn't have before being guided to the right one to start with, due to a misspelling of my email address and confusing syllabus instructions. The videos and questions asked thereafter do not always match up. The course outlines you are asked to fill out and chapters also do not match up, which is counterintuitive to the learning process and frustrating. Workbook reference figures sometimes don't exist. Random question boxes popped up in the courses unannounced that don't apply. The final exams I took have variations of questions that I had not seen before, which I feel shouldn’t have been the case--they should have come up in some variation in quizzes before. As someone else mentioned, 5%(-8%) of the “correct” quiz and test answers are actually incorrect. One example: "The timeline is July 1 through September 30--with THIRTY days in each month [...]." In another example, Net Loan Proceeds are a debit to the broker, but in a T/F question in a Unit Review Test, the "correct" answer is that it's a credit to the broker. It makes you wonder to what degree you’re learning things as wrong or right. You're also only given a limited amount of chances to pass practice final tests OR there is a limited amount of questions in the bank-- this could stand for improvement to really increase our chances on the big exam day. If I hadn't been collecting previous test questions diligently on the side, I might not have been as poised for later success. Also, I believe if I had not taken free real estate exams found online after completing my Kaplan coursework, I wouldn’t have been properly prepared—especially as relates to the National Portion math I was met with on exam day. Overall, I wish I had researched courses to see which were better rated, because $1,115 is a big commitment of funds. I am not satisfied with my investment, though I did pass my licensing exam with 134/154 correct the first time (which I suppose is the point after all). This is by a big effort of my own, however. I would encourage others to shop around before investing in Kaplan for this course. They are great for other subject matter, I have heard. This course could stand for improvement, in my opinion—some updating, as others have said. I would advise others to be wary.

VanEd

VanEd
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4.36/5

based on 14 reviews

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Van Ed (Colorado)

S.M.

Being able to study online at my own pace was just the cherry on top. If you are considering this process, make sure to allocate time each day and create a set schedule for yourself. One thing I found a bit frustrating throughout the course was that we had to spend a certain amount of time on every page to progress onto another. I think it would really make the courses ten times better if they were to remove that detail to make it easier for their users.

McKissock Learning

McKissock Learning
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3.80/5

based on 5 reviews

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Go somewhere else for learning

Lindsey Haas

I signed up for the appraisal school in Jan 2020. I was starting to do the school but then COVID hit and I went from working to being a teacher and a stay at home working mom. Times have been tough. Then the market went crazy and homes sales went through the roof. So, we grabbed on to coat tails not sure where things would be in the coming months or year and tried to close all that we could over the summer to bank what we could. In the meantime the school had to go on the back burner. Now we are having to possibly school our kids again and so I called to ask for an extension. They want to charge me $50 for a 30 day extension. I had asked for 6 more months to complete this. Why on earth could they not allow me more time considering all that has changed in our worlds. I asked for some grace and they denied me. So, I had them cancel the entire program and I will not be going back here for anything in the future. You only have 10 days to get a refund and you have 6 months to complete it so BUYER BEWARE if you are a working mom and things in your world get turned upside down they will not work with you.

Real Estate School FAQs

Before you can earn a Texas real estate license, you will have to meet the official requirements. You have to be 18 years or older, a Texas resident, a Permanent Resident, or a US citizen, and you have to meet the Texas Real Estate Commission’s integrity, trustworthiness and honesty standards.
To become a Texas real estate agent, you will have to undertake a Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) background check. All of these are prerequisites with education to become a real estate agent in Texas.
Additionally, you have to have to meet these additional requirements

  • Complete 180 hours of pre-licensing education. Register for the required class and complete the mandatory 180 hours.
  • Secure a sponsoring broker. Before you can practice in the state, you have to be sponsored by a real estate broker with a Texas license.
  • Submit fees and forms to TREC. Once your 180 mandatory hours of licensing education have been completed, you can submit all necessary documents to TREC. You have the opportunity to select an inactive or active initial license. If you want to practice real estate, you’ll have to apply for the active license.
    Submit fingerprints. Schedule the fingerprinting and license examination. Once you get a letter of approval from the Texas Real Estate Commission, which directs you to the CIB or Candidate Information Brochure, you will be able to schedule an exam. You will also be able to submit for review your fingerprints. You typically have a year from the application date to pass the licensing exam.
  • Prepare for the state licensing exam. You must pay attention and study for the licensing test as this will be the final barrier to you becoming a real estate agent in Texas. Many students take a separate “test prep” course shortly before taking the state exam.
  • Take the State Exam. Once you have passed this exam and the necessary documentation and fingerprints are on record, you will be able to receive your Inactive or Active Salesperson License from the Texas Real Estate Commission by email.

Assuming you qualify for the requirements, earning a real estate license in Texas means you have to have completed 180 hours of accompanying real estate education. The courses below are required:

  • Principles of Real Estate I: 30-hour credit
  • Principles of Real Estate II: 30-hour credit
  • Law of Agency: 30-hour credit
  • Law of Contracts: 30-hour credit
  • Promulgated Contract Forms: 30-hour credit
  • Real Estate Finance: 30-hour credit

The state licensing exam isn’t too hard to pass, assuming you’ve taken a solid pre-licensing class and studied hard.  In Texas, a good number of people fail the test – but keep in mind that not everyone has taken a cram course to improve their odds of passing.

For anyone taking the Texas real estate licensing test, you will have 150 minutes to answer 110 questions.  The questions are all multiple choice and are split into two categories; the national section and the state section. 

The national section comes with 80 questions that have to be answered in the space of 105 minutes. The state section, on the other hand, comes with 30 questions that have to be answered within 45 minutes. 

If you happen to fall short at your first attempt at passing the real estate licensing test, Texas grants you three tries to pass both sections of the test. If you are unable to pass the two parts of the test after three attempts, you will have to take additional education, typically for 30-60 hours before you can retake the licensing test.

Becoming a real estate agent in Texas may seem like a daunting task due to the 180-hour education requirement.  However, this is a process that, if done diligently, can yield results in a short period. Real estate, compared to other industries, is one of the lowest barrier to entry fields you can join.  If you knock out the licensing education, find a supportive broker, and are willing to put in the effort, you could potentially earn six figures in this field. All of that considered – becoming an agent isn’t too hard, given the rewards.

Once you’re finished with the pre-licensing courses and you have passed the real estate exam to earn your license, you will be required to select a brokerage. This is because the state of Texas requires you to have an experienced broker direct and guide you in the first year through any concerns and questions you might have.  To select a broker, make sure you’re doing your research online about the best and worst parts about working there. Once you have a few frontrunners, double-check with TREC to see that they are licensed and approved.

To be a residential real estate agent in Texas, you do not need a college degree. If you choose to take an in-person approach to the course, it will most likely follow a semester schedule. This means that you can finish the course in just a couple of months. It is also possible for you to take the course online at your own pace, earning your hours in just a few weeks if you are willing to put in the hours.

Both commercial and residential real estate agents are required to be licensed by the state, but there are some differences. Both sets of real estate agents have to take the same classes and meet the same 180 hours requirement. A residential real estate agent does not have to have a university degree.

Below is a schedule of costs associated with becoming a realtor in Texas:

Pre-licensing education and training costs:

The estimated cost for this is around $400-$1000 or more depending on the school or online program you select. This involves finding an accredited and qualified real estate school to clock your hours. As stated earlier, the state of Texas requires you to finish 180 hours of education.

Real estate licensing and exam fees

This fee schedule is estimated to cost about $400. The breakdown of this schedule is as follows: applying for your license will incur a charge of about $50. You will also need to pay for your background check and mandatory fingerprinting. This typically costs around $100. TREC currently charges $54 per exam attempt. The license costs about $150.

Real estate broker fees

These fees are estimated to cost anything from $30 to $450 per month. The real estate broker fees are the fees that you have to incur when you want to become associated with a recognized and accredited broker. As it is your first year, there are some things that your sponsor broker will provide. These things, such as office supplies, photocopies, internet, and any other business expenses, are usually associated with the daily operation of your business. It is also likely that you will have to pay a desk fee every month to help reimburse some of these costs.

Real estate membership dues

Membership dues and feels usually cost around $200 or more each year. And while they can qualify as a tax break in the state of Texas, they are still a significant expense for many Realtors. This fee typically depends on how many associations you want to join. For instance, you can become part of your local and state real estate boards. Every one of these boards comes with a membership fee that has to be paid monthly or yearly for you to be able to enjoy the numerous advantages and networking options they offer. The local MLS or Multiple Listing Service will also have fees associated with them. Depending on where you are in the state, you may have to pay your monthly dues either to your broker or to the association directly.

Continuing Education

Becoming a real estate agent does not mean you stop educating yourself once you have passed your licensing tests.  To stay an active agent, you have to meet SAE and CE requirements. Some CE courses are offered for free through local boards of realty. Additional designations, though optional, may also come with fees.

No. Texas does not have reciprocity with any other state. If you are interested in becoming licensed in the state, you will have to meet every one of the current licensing requirements, regardless of if you have a real estate license from another state.

If you are searching for more information in regards to becoming a real estate agent in Texas, you can simply head to the website of the Texas Real Estate Commission: www.trec.texas.gov