With a dynamic real estate market in the Lone Star State, it’s little wonder that you want to learn how to become a real estate agent in Texas. After all, it’s a great career with almost unlimited growth potential, and it’s relatively inexpensive to get started.
Here are the qualifications to be eligible for a Texas real estate license:
- You must be over 18 years old
- You must live and work in the U.S.
- You must meet the Texas Real Estate Commission’s qualifications for honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity
We’ve researched every step of the process so you’re only a few short months away from selling homes in sunny Texas.
How to Become a Real Estate Agent in Texas
Before we jump into the steps for getting your license, make sure you set yourself up for success. If you want to learn more about where the industry is heading, check out Pinnacle Realty Advisors’ e-book containing the brokerage’s predictions for real estate this year. This educational report is chock-full of historical data and trend charts to give you insight into the changing market you’ll be diving into.
Ready to learn how to become a real estate agent in Texas? Let’s dive into these steps in a little more detail.
1. Complete a Prelicensing Course & Exam
The state of Texas requires 180 hours of coursework before sitting for the licensing exam. Courses are broken into six sections of 30 hours each:
- Part one of the basic principles of real estate
- Principles, part two
- Agency law
- Contract law
- Common real estate contracts and forms
- Real estate financing
We’ll get into the details of choosing a school below. But if you’re looking for an economical self-paced course, RealEstateU offers Texas prelicensing classes at the lowest price of any of the schools that appear on our list of the best online real estate schools. Its basic package doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles, but if you have some experience in real estate or sales and want to get through your required hours quickly, you can’t beat the $299 price tag.
Once your course is complete, you’ll need to take a proctored final exam. You’ll be able to take the final exam from the comfort of home via virtual proctoring. You’ll just need to show your proctor that you have no study aids in the room. After completing the prelicensing classes, you’ll be one step closer to helping your clients sell their ranch near Amarillo or buy a bungalow in Waco.
5 Best Real Estate Schools in Texas for 2023
2. Apply for a Texas Real Estate License
Now it’s time to apply for your real estate license. To apply online, visit the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) website and create an account on their online service platform.
From there, complete the Application for Inactive Real Estate Sales Agent License and pay the $185 license fee. It may seem strange to apply for an inactive license, but that’s just because you’ll need to find a sponsoring broker after you pass your exam in order to activate your license. You can also print out and mail their downloadable form if you prefer.
The application should only take a few minutes to complete. The bulk of the application relates to your background and previously held professional licenses. You may have to fill out the Texas Real Estate Commission Background History Form if you need to explain some of the answers to your questions on the application.
Once your application has been approved, TREC will send you a letter with your “TREC ID.” You’ll need that number to continue with the process.
3. Complete a Background Check
You’ll need to get a fingerprint background check to complete your Texas real estate license application. Once you have your TREC ID number, you can schedule an appointment at one of the 20 MorphoTrust locations across the state. You’ll be charged $38.25 for the service.
4. Pass the Texas Real Estate License Exam
You’re almost there! It’s time to take your license exam, and here’s what you need to know.
Time to Complete:
125 multiple-choice questions
Bring to Testing Center:
2 pieces of ID & a non-programmable calculator
What’s on the Exam?
The Texas real estate license exam includes both a national and state section. All the questions are in multiple-choice format. You’ll have a total of four hours to complete both sections. The national portion of the exam requires a 66% pass rate, whereas the state portion requires you to get 53% of the answers right.
|Exam||Time Limit||Number of Questions||Requirement to Pass|
|National portion of the exam||150 minutes||85 multiple-choice questions||At least 56/85 correct answers|
|Texas portion of the exam||90 minutes||40 multiple-choice questions||At least 21/40 correct answers|
How Do I Schedule the Exam?
First, make sure you submit your prelicensing course completion documents to the Texas Real Estate Commission. Next, visit Pearson VUE’s website or call (800) 997-1248 to schedule your license exam.
When scheduling your exam, make sure that your name and personal information precisely match the ID you’ll use to enter the exam room. There are 30 Pearson VUE exam locations across the state, and the exam costs $43.
Preparing for the Exam
All that’s left is preparing for your license exam. Make sure to review your course material and consider investing in exam prep tools if you’re looking for an extra boost of confidence. We recommend The CE Shop and their feature-packed packages that include digital flashcards and e-books to prepare you for both the national and state portions of the license exam.
How to Study for the Real Estate Exam: Tips & Strategies
Arrive at the Pearson VUE examination site at least 30 minutes before your computer-based exam is scheduled to begin. Remember to bring:
- Two forms of valid ID (one must be a government-issued photo ID with a signature and the other must have your signature)
- A non-programmable, silent calculator (optional)
Leave your purse, wallet, phone, watch, food, and drinks in the car. For other examination center policies, refer to page eight of this Pearson VUE handbook.
Your score report will immediately appear on the screen when you complete the exam. If you fail on your first try, you’ll receive a diagnostic report on the portions of the exam you need to review again. You’ll need to retake only the portion of the exam you failed. You cannot apply for re-examination at the test center, since you need to wait for 24 hours after your failed test before scheduling. The fee for a retake is the same as your first exam fee, $43.
If you pass the exam and the background check, expect to receive your license document from TREC via email within five to 10 business days.
5. Find a Sponsoring Texas Real Estate Brokerage to Hire You
You’ve almost made it! After following the above steps to become a real estate agent in Texas, you’ll initially be issued an inactive license. To receive a full license and work as a real estate agent in Texas, you’ll need to find a sponsoring broker to oversee your work.
Read our section on compensation below to learn about employment terms and crucial questions to ask while interviewing. Once you’ve found a broker, you’ll be ready to complete a brokerage sponsorship request through TREC’s online service. Only after the broker has accepted your sponsorship request can you begin to work as a licensed Texas real estate salesperson.
What’s the Best Real Estate Company to Work For?
How Much Does It Cost to Get a Real Estate License in Texas?
Texas Real Estate Governing Board:
Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC)
Price Range for Prelicensing Courses:
Total Estimated Costs:
It costs about $1,000 to get your real estate license in Texas. The biggest price tag is associated with your 180-hour prelicensing course, but you’ll also have to pay a few fixed fees. These include your license exam fee, license application fee, and background check fee.
Sample Texas Real Estate License Costs
|Prelicensing Classes (180 Hours)||$627 (with Colibri Real Estate)|
(Texas real estate license costs as of April 2023)
Choosing a Texas Real Estate School
You’ll be able to choose how you’ll take your course, whether online, livestream, or in-person. Scheduled classes tend to help students who need structure, while self-paced courses work wonders for those with busy schedules.
|Types of Instruction|
|In-person Classes|| |
|Livestream Classes|| |
|Online Classes|| |
How Much Money Does a Real Estate Agent in Texas Make?
According to Indeed, Texas real estate agents make an average of $88,980 per year through compensation that’s based entirely on commission. As you consider a commission-based income, make sure you understand these three essential principles. Also, inquire about these aspects of your employment terms when you are interviewing with potential brokerages.
As a commissioned salesperson, your income entirely depends on your abilities and effort. Some brokerages may offer you 70% of your commissions, a ratio that may rise to 100% after you’ve met a specific sales goal (or cap) for the year. But the higher your share of the commissions, the more likely the brokerage is to charge desk fees or other monthly charges to cover their expenses. Other brokerages will ask for a 50-50 split on commissions but may not charge monthly desk fees.
You may decide to immerse yourself in your new career to build a client base more quickly, though some new agents choose to work on a part-time basis. It’s totally doable and up to you.
Can You Be a Part-time Real Estate Agent? (+ Free Guide & Videos)
How to Become a Real Estate Agent in Texas: FAQs
We know you’re excited to begin your new real estate career! We have more answers to your frequently asked questions below. Don’t see what you’re looking for? Let us know in the comment section!
How long does it take to become a licensed real estate agent in Texas?
It takes between four and five months to earn a real estate license in Texas. Even a person devoting 40 hours a week to real estate classes will take more than a month to finish the coursework. It may also take several weeks for the board to approve your application. Fortunately, you can use TREC’s Application Tracker tool to see how your application is progressing in the approval process.
What is the fastest way to get a real estate license in Texas?
The fastest way to get a real estate license in Texas is to choose an online real estate school that allows you to work at your own pace. Check out the program offered through Colibri Real Estate. You’ll receive a top-notch education while going through the material as fast as you are comfortable.
Is the Texas real estate license exam difficult?
As we mentioned, the Texas real estate license exam includes both a national and state section. All the questions are in multiple-choice format. You’ll have a total of four hours to complete both sections.
The national portion of the exam requires a 66% pass rate, and the state portion requires you to get 53% of the answers right. This is a slightly lower pass rate than what’s required in a lot of other states.
What happens if I fail the Texas real estate license exam?
If you don’t pass on your first try, you’ll receive a diagnostic report that outlines which portions of the exam you’ll need to study further. You only need to retake the portion of the exam you failed, as long as you do it within one year of filing your initial TREC application, you’ve paid the $43 exam fee, and 24 hours have passed since your last exam.
However, if you fail the exam three times, additional qualifying real estate education is necessary before you can apply for a retake. If you fail either the state or the national portion of the exam, you must take 30 hours of additional courses. If you fail both the national and state sections of the exam, you must take 60 hours of additional education.
Is getting a Texas real estate license worth it?
Changing careers may feel risky, especially if you move from one with a regular salary to one based entirely on commission. At the same time, the Texas real estate market is booming! A driven person who isn’t afraid of hard work could clean up in this market.
Instead of jumping into a real estate career with both feet, you might consider keeping your “day job” for a while. Check out our article on working as a part-time real estate agent, which includes an interactive tool that compares the costs involved when working as a real estate agent to how many average-priced homes you need to sell to break even.
More Career Resources From The Close
We’re thrilled you’re considering leaping into a real estate career in Texas, and we’ll be here to celebrate each of your successes. At The Close, we’re also dedicated to providing you with actionable advice for every stage of your career.