How to Get a Texas Real Estate License
There are so many appealing things about beginning a career in real estate — especially in Texas, as the housing market continues to explode in the Lone Star State.
If you are thinking about becoming a licensed real estate agent in Texas, you can follow the steps and start your real estate career in a matter of months!
Getting Your Texas Real Estate License in 5 Easy Steps
With just five easy steps, you can receive your Texas real estate license.
#1. Meet the Texas Requirements
In the state of Texas, there are a few basic requirements that must be met before you can start your application process. You must:
- Be a citizen of the United States, Green Card holder, or Permanent Resident card
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Meet the Texas Real Estate Commission’s qualifications for “honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity.” If you have concerns about meeting this qualification, you can request a fitness determination before applying for the license.
#2. Enroll in an Accredited Texas Real Estate School
The Texas Real Estate Commission requires all real estate licensees to complete a thorough 180-hour course through an accredited educational institution. The
The coursework is broken down into six different sections that each require 30 hours of specific topics:
- Principles of Real Estate I - You will learn the basic principles of real estate, including an intro to real estate law, ethics of practice, fair housing laws, real estate contracts, and more.
- Principles of Real Estate II - You will dive deeper into the real estate practice and laws, including the licensing process, closing procedures, Texas real estate laws, and more.
- Law of Agency - As a real estate agent, you must understand the legal role of agency and how it relates to your transactions. This section will include information about being a fiduciary, employment law, and the specifics around listing and buying representation.
- Law of Contracts - A real estate transaction involves numerous types of contracts. From representation to closing agreements, it’s important to have a full understanding of how these contracts relate to you and your clients so you can properly operate.
- Promulgated Contract Forms - This section will keep you up to date on promulgated forms in both Texas and nationally. You will be taught how to find current forms, and how to properly utilize them for your business.
- Real Estate Finance - Lastly, you’ll take some time to understand the money and financial systems involved in real estate. You’ll learn about how money is involved, from mortgage loans to federal government programs, and everything in between.
Upon completion of your course, your educational institution will provide you a certification slip that you’ll need to copy and send in with your official application to show you’ve met the requirement.
#3. Apply to the Texas Real Estate Exam
Once you’ve filed your application and completed your educational requirement, you’ll then receive an approval letter from the Texas Real Estate Commission with a candidate handbook and instructions on how to schedule your final exam.
Texas has partnered with test administrator PearsonVue, who hosts the exams in person at an approved test facility. To schedule your exam, you can make an online reservation or call a test facility.
However, walk-in tests are not permitted, so you’ll need to schedule your exam at least 24 hours before your desired date.
While scheduling your exam, it’s also a good time to schedule your fingerprinting appointment. This is a required part of your real estate application and is done through a state-contracted company, IDEMIA.
Similar to your exam, same-day appointments are not accepted so make sure to plan ahead at least 24 hours.
#4. Pass the Real Estate Exam
In order to pass the Texas Real Estate exam, you’ll need to correctly answer 61% of the questions on the exam in order to pass.
More specifically, you’ll need to answer 56 out of 85 of the questions in the national section and 21 out of 40 in the Texas-specific section.
You’ll be given four hours to complete the exam and will be able to immediately see if you passed. So far in 2022, an average of 62% of applicants passed the exam on the first try.
#5. Sign with a Texas Brokerage
If you’ve passed the exam and received approval from the real estate commission, your next step to becoming a licensed agent will be to sign with a Texas brokerage. Until you do so, your license will be considered inactive.
Once your broker has accepted your sponsorship request, you’ll be given an active license and can begin working as a real estate agent!
Texas Real Estate License Reciprocity
If you have a real estate license in another state and are looking to become active in Texas, you will still have to complete much of the Texas licensing process because Texas does not offer reciprocity from outside states.
While you won’t have to retake the national portion of the exam you will have to complete the other application requirements like the educational course, background check, and pass the Texas-specific exam.
How Long Does it Take to Get a Texas Real Estate License?
From start to finish, you should expect it to take four to six months to receive your license depending on the amount of time you are able to dedicate to the process.
The most time-consuming aspect is the 180-hour coursework and exam prep that is recommended to pass the exam. Keep in mind that if you fail the exam three times, you’ll be required to take an additional 30 hours of coursework, adding to the overall timeline of your application and license.
How Much Does a Texas Real Estate License Cost?
You should be aware of the fees required to get your Texas real estate license. Keep in mind that these costs are an investment into your future career and will pay off in the long run!
You can expect to pay around $500 on average for your coursework, with online classes being more affordable than on-campus in-person courses.
You will have to pay a $185 application fee submitted to the Texas Real Estate Commission and a $38.25 fee for your fingerprinting.
All in all, it’s best to anticipate between $800 and $1,000 for your license.
Should You Become a Real Estate Agent in Texas?
There are so many rewarding aspects to working in real estate. And while the industry might not be for everyone, there’s a reason it’s become a popular career for many.
If you are someone who likes the flexibility and hard work required to run a business, real estate might be a good fit for you, as real estate agents are essentially entrepreneurs.
They set their own hours, run their own business, and have ultimately unlimited earning potential.
Plus, you’ll be helping clients through one of their biggest transactions in life — buying or selling a home.
Final Thoughts on Getting a Texas Real Estate License
According to Redfin, the median price for a home in Texas is up almost 20% year-over-year, indicating that we’re seeing a boom in the market.
With the real estate market growth over the last few years and no signs of slowing down, there’s never been a better time to get your real estate license!
TL;DR: To get your real estate license in Texas, all you have to do is enroll in an accredited Texas real estate school and pass the state exam. Once you do, your license will be mailed to you and you can sign with a brokerage.