Washington Real Estate License Guide

Quick Facts

Washington Real Estate Governing Body:

Washington State Real Estate Commission

PreLicensing Requirements:

90 Hours

СЕ Requirements:

30 Hours

How to Get a Washington Real Estate License

The requirements to become a real estate broker in Washington are:woman in front of computer

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Register as a student with the official testing vendor, Applied Measurements Professionals, Inc. (AMP), so your school can submit your course completion information electronically.
  • Complete 90 hours of real estate education through an approved provider within two years before applying for the exam. Be sure to compare reviews of courses here on AgentAdvice.com to make sure you pick the school that is right for you. Licensing education includes: 
    • A 60-hour course in Real Estate Fundamentals.
    • A 30-hour course in Real Estate Practices.
  • Submit fingerprints for a background check through IdentoGO when you apply for your initial license and every six years afterward.
  • After your school submits your education information, schedule your exam 
  • Pass the broker’s exam.

Once you’ve done all of the above, you can submit a License Application to get your Broker license. When you receive your license, it will be with an inactive status. It will be activated once you accept an online request to join a firm.

Compare Washington Real Estate Schools

We’ve listed the best schools in Washington based on reader’s reviews here.

SchoolReviewsEditor's ScorePricing
Kaplan Real Estate Education
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 32 reviews

A- $$$
Real Estate Express
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 74 reviews

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

based on 53 reviews

A $$
Rockwell Institute
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star

based on 7 reviews

B $$$
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
  • full star
B $$$

Washington Real Estate Licensing FAQs

Working in real estate in Washington can be profitable for real estate brokers and comes with a lot of other benefits. As the job involved dealing with people’s valuable assets, the education required to become a real estate agent is higher than in other careers. However, it’s far from difficult, which is why thousands of people choose this profession regularly. 

The 90-hour pre-license education course covers everything you need to know to pass the final licensing exam on the first try. As such, you need to pay attention to the areas covered in this course and focus on studying them carefully. 

To maximize your chances of passing the final exam on the first try, make sure you pay attention during the classes and study regularly. If you need an additional hand, you can always get a prep course that will help you prepare for the exam by giving you study directions and showing you on which areas to focus. 

The time it takes to get your Washington state real estate broker’s license depends on several factors, with the prelicensing education course being the most time-consuming part. If you want to finish the prelicensing education course in the shortest possible time, you can take four or five hours per day at which pace you would finish the course within three to four weeks. 

Once you’ve completed the prelicensing course and sent the documents over to the examination provider, they will process the paper application and, within approximately two weeks, will send a confirmation notice, including information on how to schedule an examination appointment. 

Scheduling the exam is done by order and usually takes several days to two weeks. Once you pass the exam, your exam results will be sent to the Department within three days. If you pass only one portion of the exam, you have six months to pass the other portion. Otherwise, you would have to retake the full exam once again. 

The average annual wage in Washington state is $66,020, higher than the national average of $60,087, while a top-paid agent in Washington can earn $107,570 or more.

All areas of Washington state earn more than $50,000 annually, with the top-paying area being Walla Walla, where agents earn $75,800 per year on average. Top agents make the most in the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area, where the annual 90th percentile wage is $117,890.

If you are licensed in another state, the real estate education requirements will be waived, and you will only be required to submit a certified license history from the state where you’re currently licensed. After the Washington State Department of Licensing has reviewed your license history, they will give you instructions on how to take the broker’s exam.

If you’ve had an active license in another state in the previous six months, you’ll only need to take the Washington State part of the exam.

The following costs apply when obtaining a Washington real estate license:

  • Take the exam: $138.25
  • Retake the exam: $138.25
  • State & National Background Checks: $42.80
  • Get your original license: $146.25
  • Renew your license: $146.25
  • Get a duplicate license: $26.50
  • Get license certification: $26.50

Besides these fees you pay to the Washington State Department of Licensing, you would also pay for the prelicensing course, which is provided by accredited real estate schools. Each education provider has a different set of features and services it offers, so the prices can vary. Usually, the prelicensing course will cost you around $250 to $500, depending on the specific features you need.

You should also account for prep courses, study materials, and other expenses that may arise on your journey to become a licensed real estate broker in Washington. 

*U.S. Veterans may be eligible for partial reimbursements of costs. 

Currently, only a high school degree is required to be eligible to become a real estate broker in Washington state. 

A minimum score of 70 is required on each portion – the national and the state portion. If you fail the exam, your score report will include instructions for retaking it. If you fail part of the exam, you’ll need to retake the part you failed within six months.

The exam results are valid for one year, and if you don’t apply for a license within this time, you’ll have to reapply to take the exam and potentially have to meet additional education requirements.

The Washington Real Estate Broker Examination consists of two portions: a national portion with 100 questions and a state portion with 30 questions.

The National Broker portion is based upon seven major content areas: 

  • Agency Relationships and Contracts
  • Real Property Ownership/Interest 
  • Finance 
  • Real Property 
  • Marketing Regulations (purchase and rental) 
  • Property Management 
  • Real Estate Calculations

The State Broker portion deals with topics relating particularly to Washington’s real estate license law. There are 30 multiple-choice questions covering the following topics: 

  • General Rules
  • Licensing Requirements
  • Washington Statutes and Rules Governing the Activities of Licensees
  • Real Estate Managing Brokerage Relationships
  • Closing and Settlement

The questions on the exam will be mixed and won’t be presented in separate sections. To pass the exam, you need to answer 70% of the questions correctly. You will have 3.5 hours to complete the whole exam. 

According to official records of the October-December 2019 exam session, 71% of candidates passed the national portion of the Washinton real estate licensing exam on the first try, while 75% pass the state portion on the first try. The percentage across different schools (where there is more than one student) varies from 29% to 100%, so make sure to pick a provider that will give you all the tools you need to pass on the first try. 

In the state of Washington, the entry-level real estate license is a broker license, so there is no real estate agent at all. 

Most brokers are “qualified” to sponsor you, so you can certainly find a sponsoring broker near your location. However, you should make sure that the sponsoring broker is experienced, reliable, and has shown a pattern of preparing successful real estate agents for the real estate industry.

You need to find a broker that has worked in the industry for years and has a good reputation in training agents. 

Remember to be strict with your requirements. Your future real estate career depends on it, so you should have a sponsoring broker that knows Washington State’s real estate industry in and out and is willing to transfer that knowledge to you.

The broker examination shall consist of two portions: the national portion and the state/Washington portion. The national portion consists of questions that test general real estate practices. In contrast, the state portion consists of questions that test on Washington laws and regulations related to real estate licensing.

It is unlawful for anyone to act as a real estate broker, managing broker, or real estate firm without first obtaining a license. Any person who acts as a real estate broker, managing broker, or real estate firm without a license or violating any of the law provisions will be found guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

When you arrive at the testing center, you must bring two current forms of identification with you, a primary and a secondary. They need to meet the following conditions:

  • They must include your current name and signature.
  • At least 1 of them must have your current photograph.

Some examples of valid primary forms of identification are driver’s license, state identification card, passport, or a military identification card. The second form of identification must have your name and signature for signature verification. It can be a credit card, social security card, or an employment or student ID card.

The name on your ID forms and the registration form have to match. If your name on your registration is different than it appears on your identification, you must bring proof of your name change such as marriage license, divorce decree, or court order.

If you’re applying for a real estate license with a past conviction, the Washington State Department of Licensing will review and investigate your record on a case-by-case basis. During the review, they will consider:

  • The type of crime
  • The level of the conviction
  • The relationship of the crime to your profession’s practices
  • The length of time since the conviction occurred
  • Whether you already notified the Commission of the conviction as required

During the review and investigation, you or other sources may be required to provide additional information about the conviction. If the Commission decides to deny your application or proceed with disciplinary action against your license, you will be notified along with additional information about the next steps.