How to Renew a Real Estate License in California

Karen D. Friedman
Feb 13, 2023
5 min

Did you know that your real estate license has to be renewed?

Same goes for newly licensed brokers out there too!

You put in long hours of training and hard work to get your real estate license. So, let’s make sure you follow all the renewal steps to avoid a lapse.

While each state has their own requirements, we’re going to focus on real estate license renewal in California.

We’ll go over the basics of real estate license renewal, the costs involved and other frequently asked questions.

How Long is a Real Estate License Good For?

Your real estate salesperson license or real estate broker’s license is good for 4 years.

But it’s important to know that continuing education will be required for renewal before your license expires. So make sure you plan time to complete these courses.

The Department of Real Estate will send a courtesy renewal reminder letter 60 days prior to your license expiration date. But don’t count on that. Be proactive and calendar your renewal date so you can take action.

Here’s How to Renew Your Real Estate License in California

It’s a fairly easy process. There are only a few steps that you will need to take:

  1. Complete the required real estate continuing education at any accredited real estate school, like CA Realty Training.
  2. Go to eLicensing on the Department of Real Estate website and enter your course completion numbers.
  3. Pay the real estate license renewal fee.


The Department of Real Estate, or DRE, requires 45 hours of continued education. This is the same for both salesperson and broker. These courses are offered in class at a college or real estate school. Also, you can take these courses online.  

When you are taking the courses online, the DRE will be counting the equivalent in days not hours. This averages to 6 days. That would be the fastest you could complete the courses by the DRE regulations.


When you’re ready to renew, you can complete the process using eLicensing on the DRE website.  You are eligible to renew as early as 90 days before your license expiration date. The eLicensing system will take you step-by-step through the renewal process.

This is where you will enter your course completion numbers to validate that you satisfied the education requirement.


After you have successfully entered your course completion numbers, you will be prompted to pay your renewal fee. This will also be done from eLicensing.

Once you have paid, if you hold a salesperson license, the system will notify your broker of record who will certify your license.  

Can You Renew a Real Estate License After it Expires?

Ok, you overlooked your license renewal and now your license has expired. But there’s no need to panic. Is there still a way to renew your license? The answer is yes, as long as it’s within 2 years of the license expiration date.  

If you are an active agent or in a real estate transaction, be prepared and DO NOT let your real estate license expire. This can affect your ability to conduct business and collect your commission.

If your license has been expired for more than 2 years, it would be best to contact the Department of Real Estate directly.

You may be required to take additional action. This could include paying additional fees or completing more education courses.  

How Much Does a Renewing Your Real Estate License Cost?

There are only 2 costs associated with renewing your license. The cost of the continuing education courses and the renewal fee from the Department of Real Estate.

Most accredited real estate schools offer these courses for under $100. The average cost is between $59 – $89. This includes all the courses required by the Department of Real Estate.


Salesperson – Cost to renew real estate license: $245

Late renewal (within 2 years of license expiration date): $367


Broker – Cost to renew real estate license: $300

Late renewal (within 2 years of license expiration date): $450

What Can I Expect From Taking Real Estate License Continuing Education Online?

You can expect the same course curriculum that you would from taking your courses in person at a college or real estate school. You won’t be sacrificing your education by taking your courses online.

Training online is also convenient. As long as you have an internet connection, you can take your classes from anywhere.

Here is a snapshot of the some of the benefits of online learning and the courses required:

  • Self-Paced Learning: Continuing education courses taken online DO NOT track your time, so you can work at your own pace. This allows you the flexibility to schedule your study hours.
  • Open Book Final Examination: Chapter quizzes test your comprehension, preparing you for the open book online final examination.
  • Fast Completion of Courses: Ability to complete the courses in as little as 6 days.
  • Fast Completion Certificate: Receive your DRE course completion certificate immediately upon successful fulfillment.

The course topics you will cover in your continuing education are:

  • Real Estate Contracts (12 hrs)
  • Disclosure Obligations (12 hrs)
  • Financing & TRID (3 hrs)
  • Agency (3 hrs)
  • Ethics (3 hrs)
  • Fair Housing (3 hrs)
  • Risk Management (3 hrs)
  • Trust Fund Handling (3 hrs)
  • Management & Supervision (3 hrs)

Final Thoughts on Renewing a Real Estate License

Finding the information on the progress is always the hardest part. Once you have all the information, renewing your license is like a walk in the park.

Remember it’s as easy as 1 – 2 – 3:

  1. Complete real estate continuing education
  2. Enter validation of course completion on eLicensing
  3. Pay the real estate license renewal fee

Timeframes are just as important.  

Don’t forget to schedule your renewal on your calendar! Your action date should be 90 days before your license expiration date. This will allow you the time to enroll and complete your required courses well before your license expires.

Do you feel prepared to renew your real estate license?

TL;DR: To renew a real estate license in California, you must complete 45 hours of continuing education, pay the renewal fee, and submit your renewal application within 4 years of the license issuance date. Failure to renew on time may result in license expiration.

Karen D. Friedman
Feb 13, 2023
How To
5 min