How do I Take the Real Estate Exam?

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  • Written By: Sheryl Butterfield
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 13 January 2019
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Real estate students who have completed a pre-licensing education are ready to take the real estate exam. Misconceptions around licensing in the real estate industry abound. Students should understand what is required of them before studying and taking the real estate exam.

A national, or standard, real estate exam does not exist. Each state in the U.S. has its own regulations and real estate laws. These laws help states to protect consumers. Therefore, each state offers its own real estate exam, which licenses either salespeople or brokers.

Real estate is now a globalized industry. Realty practices and liability vary greatly in countries around the world. Some countries, such as Mexico and the U.S. have signed agreements to cooperate. Each country has differing requirements for selling and marketing properties.

Students in the U.S. should understand the real estate requirements for their state and any other states in which they want to practice. Many states have different licensing requirements for salespeople than for brokers. Some states have gone to broker-only licensing. This simply implies that the state allows salespeople and brokers to do the same jobs within the real estate industry.


As with any exam, students benefit from studying and completing practice tests. Many companies on the Internet offer online study services and provide practice exams. Beware of a company, however, that offers a "typical" practice exam. As mentioned above, no "typical" real estate exam exists. Each state will ask different questions depending on their laws. It is the student's responsibility to understand their state's regulations. Those topics will most certainly be the focus of that state's real estate exam.

Specific knowledge is helpful before taking any state's real estate exam. For example, know your state's minimum age requirement for taking the exam. Be aware of prerequisite education and experience. Know the fees for applications or other details specific to your state. In the real estate industry, change is a given. It is important to not rely on friends' past experiences. Obtain up-to-date information for your current circumstances.

Although state real estate exams vary, certain study techniques apply to taking any test. Study materials and resources are available. Again, industry change is common; if using a study guide, make sure it is current. Investigate the success rate of any preparation course. Ask if more training is free in case you fail the real estate exam the first time.

While taking the real estate exam, answer the questions you are sure of first. If you are unsure of an answer, skip it and come back later. Sometimes, a later question sparks the answer you needed for a previous question. Study ahead of time so a late night is unnecessary before the test. It is best to come into the real estate exam fresh.



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