If you want to become a realtor, you need to pass your real estate exam. It might seem a bit daunting, but with good preparation, you’ll have a great chance of passing.
Here’s what you need to do:
#1: Make Sure You’ve Met the Pre-Licensing Requirements
You can’t schedule your real estate exam until you’ve taken a certain number of hours of pre-licensing classes.
The number of hours you need to take varies from state to state. You’ll need to make sure you’re taking classes with an approved provider, too. Normally, you can choose from online real estate schools, brick-and-mortar in person schools, or community colleges.
#2: Choose a Good Exam Preparation Class or Course
There are lots of different classes or courses out there to help you prepare for the real estate exam. Many of these are supplied along with pre-licensing classes.
It’s important to choose an exam preparation class that suits your style of studying.
You might want to consider:
- Whether the class is purely self-study or whether it includes instructor-led learning.
- Whether the class involves peer learning, where you can discuss what you’re learning with other aspiring realtors.
- Whether you want extra features such as virtual flashcards, physical study materials, or a mobile app.
- How much the class costs and whether it’ll fit into your budget.
- What options there are beyond the class (e.g. some schools offer packages that include post-licensing continuing education)
#3: Set Aside Enough Time to Study
It can be difficult to make time for studying, especially if you’re also working full-time and/or taking care of kids. It’s important to give yourself enough time – and to allow some “buffer” time in case you have to skip a study session due to illness or interruptions.
Many people find it’s helpful to block out study time on a calendar and to find a good study space. Where possible, try to study at the time of day when you’re naturally at your most focused – even if that means moving around some other commitments.
#4: Do Plenty of Practice Questions
All good exam preparation classes will include access to practice questions. Make sure you get into the habit of doing these regularly.
Even when you’ve just begun your studying, it’s useful to have a go at practice questions – seeing what you got right and what you got wrong helps you to target your studying on the most important areas.
Keep in mind that the real estate exam varies from state to state. As a rough guide, you can expect your real estate exam to include around 100 - 150 multiple choice questions and to take 2- 4 hours. Your state should provide specific guidance, e.g. in the candidate handbook, on what is covered in the exam.
#5: Prepare for Exam Day Itself
It’s a good idea to check out the route to your examination center before the big day. That way, you can be confident about directions, parking, travel time, and so on.
Make sure you know what you are and aren’t able to take into the exam. For instance, you’ll be allowed to take a regular calculator but not a programmable one. You almost certainly won’t be allowed to take food and drink into the exam, unless you have made special arrangements due to a documented medical need.
If someone else will be accompanying you to the test center, make sure you know whether or not they’ll be allowed to wait within the test center. In many cases, test centers won’t allow guests.
Taking your real estate exam may feel daunting. But by preparing well ahead of time, and making sure you’re confident about what’s going to happen on the day, you’ll give yourself a great chance of success.