What’s the required education for real estate agents?

Real estate agents in the U.S. are licensed by the state where they will practice. To qualify for licensing, candidates must complete a special program with courses that will teach them about real estate laws, sales methods and other information they will need to succeed in the realty business.

Standardized exam - education for real estate agents

After the courses, there’s one more hurdle. Candidates must pass an exam with state and national sections to become licensed real estate agents, salespeople or brokers.

In most states, a broker is a licensed real estate professional who has completed the educational requirements beyond those for real estate agents. Real estate salespersons, often called agents, must work with a broker.

A Realtor® is a real estate agent who is also a member of the National Association of Realtors, or NAR.

Exact courses and hours vary

The required education for real estate agents varies by state. As the website Investopedia notes, California mandates three college-level courses while Idaho asks for 90 hours of instruction. Most states require candidates to complete a minimum number of hours of study in an approved program. Applicants must be at least 18 years old and have a high school diploma or its equivalent to enter the program. In most cases, they also must submit to a background check before licensing.

What programs typically teach

Real estate education programs teach candidates about all of the issues they will face in the field. Students learn about mortgages and financing so that they can guide clients toward a successful real estate purchase. They also are taught about the sales and bidding process. Students learn how to make offers on properties, present counter offers, and negotiate with sellers and other real estate pros.

Finally, programs teach trainees about the ins and outs of the closing process. A real estate agent should be able to guide a buyer or seller through every step of a property deal.

Real estate agent handing over keys - education for real estate agents

Choosing a real estate agent

Verify an agent’s credentials before signing a contract. Ask her to provide evidence of education and licensing. Check recommendations from previous clients and online agent reviews.

Whether you plan to buy or sell, a real estate professional can make the process much easier — and guide you to successful conclusion. Find a licensed local real estate agent or broker here at Homes & Land.

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