Want to become a real estate professional in Florida, but you don’t know where to begin? Let us be your ultimate guide in explaining everything you need to know to get your real estate license in Florida.
Whether you know someone who has succeeded in their real estate business, have always been interested in real estate, or just want to make a little extra income, the process of becoming a real estate agent is the same for everyone. While all the steps involved can feel overwhelming, we are here to break it down for you.
There are quite a few steps to becoming a real estate agent in Florida, so keep reading to find out what your next steps are and exactly what to expect from each one.
The Real Estate Market in Florida
Florida has consistently been one of the hottest real estate markets in the United States. The housing price index (HPI) recently ranked the Florida real estate market number 12 in the nation. Some top markets in Florida were Jacksonville, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, and Tampa-Saint Petersburg-Clearwater.
However, to be truly successful in the competitive Florida real estate market, you have got to be hard-working, self-motivated, honest, and enjoy helping people. If you check all of those boxes, then it may be time to follow the steps below and start your Florida real estate journey.
Benefits of getting into Florida Real Estate
The first benefit is a quite obvious one — the income. According to salary.com, a real estate sales agent in Florida averages $40,000 to $52,000 per year. These numbers will fluctuate based on commission percentage, number of homes sold, the split with your broker, if you have any caps, and the value of the homes.
For further insight, the average price for a home in Florida is around $249,189, which means when a real estate agent makes a sale, they have a solid commission — often 5% or $12,000.
Aside from gaining a good amount of income, becoming a real estate agent has many other benefits, including:
- Flexibility in your work
- Constantly varying environments and tasks
- Helping people
- YOU are the boss
- Gaining knowledge and insight about people, your community, and your area
Now that you have an idea of what you are walking into, let’s get into the actionable steps that will have you on your way to thriving in the Florida real estate market.
Do I Prequalify?
There are a couple of things to check on before you can start the process of becoming a real estate agent in Florida.
The overall requirements of obtaining a Florida real estate license include the following:
- You must be at least 18 years of age.
- You must hold a high school diploma or its equivalent.
- You must have a United States Social Security number.
Once you have those boxes checked, you are ready to begin the journey of becoming a Florida real estate agent!
1. Complete 63 Hours of Pre-License Education
There are a lot of registered real estate schools to choose from across Florida. Pick whichever one calls to your heart, and complete 63 hours of educational classes. The pre-license course focuses on real estate math, principles, laws, and practices. There are both in person and online options available for you.
2. Pass the Course Final Exam
Congratulations! You have made it through your online or in-person classes and are now ready to show your knowledge. In order to pass the exam and earn your certificate, you must receive a passing score of at least 70 percent.
The School Completion Certificate you will receive is valid for two years from the completion date, which means you must complete step four (see below) within six months of passing your course exam.
3. Complete the Fingerprinting Requirement
Before sending in your license application and registering for the Florida Real Estate Salesperson Exam, you must complete a background check through the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulations. Make sure to have your fingerprints taken at least 5 days before moving on with any further steps.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement provides a list of vendors to get fingerprints through. The cost of the service varies, but it usually ranges between $50 – $80.
4. Submit Your Completed License Application
Your next step is to complete and submit your Florida real estate license application with the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. You must complete your application and have approval before registering to take the Florida Real Estate Salesperson Exam.
You can apply for your Florida Real Estate License on the DBPR website. The Pearson VUE company will email you when your application is approved, which generally takes 10-30 days. The email will provide you with an authorization notice and your next steps in registering for the final exam. The application fee is $83.75, which you can pay online or by mail with a check or money order.
5. Take and Pass the Florida Real Estate Salesperson Exam
You heard us, another exam. Don’t worry, we are here to prepare you so you know exactly what to expect.
The Florida Real Estate Salesperson Examination is administered by Pearson VUE, an outside agency. You can register for the exam online or by phone at 888-204-6289. The exam can be canceled and rescheduled without losing your fee as long as you cancel/reschedule at least two business days before the examination date.
You can take the exam in a testing center or you can even take a proctored exam from home as long as you have strong Wi-Fi, a computer, and a working webcam. There are several testing centers throughout the state of Florida, and you can find the closest one to you by using Pearson VUE’s “find a test center” tool.
On the day of your Florida real estate exam, bring the following:
- Two (2) forms of identification
- Certificate of Pre-Licensing Education Completion
- Authorization Notice
Once inside the exam site, you’ll be asked to place all electronic devices, bulky clothing, and other personal items in a secure location, and you will be asked to sit in front of a computer to take the test. If you are testing from home, the testing proctor will ask you to scan your testing area with the camera to ensure that your personal belongings and devices are stored elsewhere.
The 100-question exam will be split between three sections: 45 questions on general real estate practices and principles, 45 questions of Florida-specific real estate information, and 10 real estate math questions.
The following are some topics that are covered in the Florida Real Estate Salesperson Exam:
- Florida real estate laws
- Brokerage management
- Real estate investment
- Closing Disclosure forms
You must receive at least a 70% to become a Florida real estate salesperson, and the score will immediately be given to you once you complete the exam. If you do not pass, you will have an opportunity to schedule to take the exam again.
For more information on the Florida Real Estate Exam, a practice course, and more things to know, check out Pearson VUE’s Florida Real Estate page.
Want to Become a REALTOR® in Florida?
Every Realtor is a real estate agent, but not every real estate agent is a Realtor. Want to take your business a step further, have great networking opportunities, and be part of an evolving real estate community? Here are your steps to becoming a REALTOR®:
- Obtain your state real estate license
- Join your local REALTORS® Association — The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has over 1,400 associations across the U.S. You can find one closest to you with their “find an association” tool.
- Pay the one-time application fee — The amount varies in each association.
- Upkeep NAR membership dues — Once you are a REALTOR®, you must pay the annual association fee of $150 per year.
There you have it! Everything you need to know about joining the exciting world of Florida real estate.
Now that we have taken you this far, we would love to provide you with more resources and information to help you thrive in this new venture. Get the ball rolling and be the best agent you can be with our Showcase IDX Grow Your Real Estate Business Academy courses.