How to Become a Texas Real Estate Agent: The Complete Process

Summary: Getting a real estate license in Texas involves meeting eligibility requirements, completing pre-licensing education, passing the licensing exam, finding a sponsoring broker, and submitting your license application. The process typically takes 4-6 months and costs around $1000 in total fees. Continuing education is required to maintain an active license.

Are you considering a career in real estate in the Lone Star State? Becoming a licensed real estate agent in Texas can open doors to a rewarding profession with excellent income potential. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of obtaining your Texas real estate license, including the latest requirements and insider tips to help you succeed.

Key Takeaways:

  • You must be at least 18 years old and a legal US resident to get a real estate license in Texas
  • 180 hours of pre-licensing education from an approved provider is required
  • Passing the Texas real estate salesperson exam with a score of 70% or higher is necessary for licensure
  • Finding a sponsoring broker to work under is a requirement to activate your license
  • Continuing education courses must be completed regularly to keep your license active

Eligibility Requirements for a Texas Real Estate License

To qualify for a real estate license in Texas, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be a citizen of the United States or a lawfully admitted alien
  • Meet TREC’s standards for honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity
  • Not have been convicted of a felony or other criminal offense within the past 5 years

If you meet these basic eligibility requirements, you’re ready to start the licensing process.

Also read: How Much Does a Real Estate License Cost

Complete Required Pre-Licensing Education

The first step in getting your Texas real estate license is to complete the required pre-licensing education. The Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) mandates 180 hours of approved coursework, which includes:

  • Principles of Real Estate I (30 hours)
  • Principles of Real Estate II (30 hours)
  • Law of Agency (30 hours)
  • Law of Contracts (30 hours)
  • Promulgated Contract Forms (30 hours)
  • Real Estate Finance (30 hours)

You must take these courses from a TREC-approved education provider, either in a classroom setting or online. Many aspiring agents prefer the flexibility of online courses, which allow you to study at your own pace. Look for a provider that offers engaging content, practice exams, and instructor support.

Pass the Texas Real Estate Salesperson Exam

Once you’ve completed your pre-licensing education, you’ll need to pass the Texas real estate salesperson exam. The exam is administered by Pearson VUE and consists of 110 multiple-choice questions (80 national questions and 30 state-specific questions). You’ll have 4 hours to complete the exam.

To pass, you must correctly answer at least 70% of the questions. The exam covers topics such as property ownership, land use controls, valuation, financing, and real estate laws.

Tips for passing the exam:

  • Review your pre-licensing course material thoroughly
  • Take practice exams to familiarize yourself with the format and types of questions
  • Focus on understanding concepts rather than just memorizing facts
  • Get a good night’s sleep and eat a healthy meal before the exam
  • Read each question carefully and eliminate obviously incorrect answers

Also read: How Long Does It Take to Get a Real Estate License

Find a Sponsoring Broker

After passing the licensing exam, you’ll need to find a sponsoring broker to work under. In Texas, all real estate salespersons must be sponsored by a licensed broker in order to legally practice real estate.

When choosing a broker, consider factors such as:

  • Reputation and experience in the industry
  • Training and support provided to agents
  • Commission split and other financial incentives
  • Office culture and work environment
  • Specialization in your desired area of real estate (e.g. residential, commercial, etc.)

Interview with several brokers to find the best fit for your goals and working style. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about their expectations and what they offer in terms of mentorship and resources.

Submit Your License Application

The final step in obtaining your Texas real estate license is to submit your application to TREC. You’ll need to provide:

  • Completed application form
  • Proof of passing the licensing exam
  • Evidence of completing pre-licensing education
  • Sponsoring broker information
  • Background check authorization
  • Application fee ($205)

You can submit your application online through TREC website. Processing times vary, but you can expect to receive your license within 2-4 weeks if your application is complete and accurate.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Real Estate License in Texas?

The time it takes to get your Texas real estate license can vary depending on your pace and schedule. However, most aspiring agents can complete the process within 4-6 months. Here’s a breakdown of the timeline:

  • Pre-licensing education: The 180 hours of required coursework can take anywhere from 2-6 months, depending on whether you study full-time or part-time. Online courses often provide more flexibility, allowing you to complete the hours on your own schedule.
  • Exam preparation: After completing your pre-licensing education, you’ll need to prepare for the Texas real estate salesperson exam. The amount of time you spend on exam prep can vary, but most people dedicate 2-4 weeks to studying and taking practice exams.
  • Scheduling and taking the exam: Once you feel prepared, you’ll need to schedule your exam with Pearson VUE. Exam dates are typically available within 1-2 weeks of scheduling. The exam itself takes 4 hours to complete.
  • Finding a sponsoring broker: After passing your exam, you’ll need to find a sponsoring broker to work under. This process can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on your location and the brokers you contact.
  • Submitting your license application: Once you have a sponsoring broker, you can submit your license application to TREC. Processing times can vary, but you can expect to receive your license within 2-4 weeks if your application is complete and accurate.

Keep in mind that these are general estimates, and your actual timeline may differ based on your individual circumstances. Factors like course load, study habits, and application processing times can all impact how long it takes to get your license.

If you’re eager to start your real estate career as soon as possible, consider dedicating more time to your studies and exam preparation. On the other hand, if you have a busy schedule or other commitments, you may need to allocate more time to complete the licensing process.

Regardless of your timeline, the most important thing is to stay focused on your goal and follow the necessary steps to obtain your license. With dedication and perseverance, you’ll be able to start your real estate career in Texas within a reasonable timeframe.

Also read: How to Become a Real Estate Agent in Texas

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Real Estate License in Texas?

The cost of obtaining a Texas real estate license can vary depending on the education provider you choose and other factors. However, here’s a breakdown of the typical expenses you can expect:

  • Pre-licensing education: The cost of the required 180 hours of coursework can range from $400 to $1000, depending on the provider and the format (online or classroom).
  • Exam fee: The Texas real estate salesperson exam fee is $54 as of 2024.
  • Application fee: The license application fee is $205, payable to TREC.
  • Background check fee: You may need to pay a fee for your background check, which can cost around $40.
  • Exam prep materials: While not required, investing in exam prep materials like study guides and practice exams can help you prepare more effectively. These materials can cost anywhere from $50 to $200.
  • Miscellaneous expenses: You may have additional costs, such as fingerprinting fees or transportation to the exam center.

In total, you can expect to spend between $800 and $1500 to get your Texas real estate license. Keep in mind that these costs are an investment in your future career, and you may be able to deduct some of these expenses on your tax return once you start working as a real estate agent.

It’s also important to factor in the ongoing costs of maintaining your license, such as continuing education courses and membership fees for professional organizations. However, these expenses are typically much lower than the initial cost of obtaining your license.

While the upfront cost of getting your real estate license may seem substantial, the potential earnings and job satisfaction can make it a worthwhile investment in your future.

Maintain Your License with Continuing Education

Congratulations, you’re now a licensed Texas real estate agent! However, your education doesn’t stop here. To keep your license active, you’ll need to complete continuing education (CE) courses on a regular basis.

Texas requires 18 hours of CE every 2 years, including:

  • 8 hours of Legal Update I and II
  • 10 hours of elective courses

You can take CE courses online or in person from approved providers. Look for courses that will enhance your knowledge and skills in your specific area of real estate practice.

Kickstart Your Real Estate Career

With your Texas real estate license in hand, you’re ready to start your exciting new career! Here are some tips for getting off to a strong start:

  • Develop a business plan outlining your goals, target market, and marketing strategies
  • Build your sphere of influence by networking with family, friends, and local businesses
  • Create a professional website and social media presence to showcase your services
  • Consider joining a professional organization like the Texas Association of Realtors for additional resources and support
  • Continuously educate yourself on market trends, new technologies, and best practices in the industry

Remember, success in real estate takes hard work, dedication, and a commitment to serving your clients’ needs. With the right education, mindset, and work ethic, you can build a thriving career in this dynamic field.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to get a real estate license in Texas?

The timeline varies, but most people complete the process in 2-6 months. This includes time for pre-licensing education, exam preparation, finding a sponsoring broker, and waiting for license processing.

How much does it cost to get a real estate license in Texas?

Expect to spend around $1000 in total, including pre-licensing course fees ($400-$700), exam fee ($54), and application fee ($205). You may also have additional expenses for exam prep materials, background check fees, etc.

Can I get a Texas real estate license online?

While you can complete your pre-licensing education and continuing education courses online, you must take the licensing exam in person at a Pearson VUE testing center.

Do I need a college degree to get a real estate license in Texas?

No, a college degree is not required. However, you must have a high school diploma or equivalent and meet the other eligibility criteria set by TREC.

How much can I earn as a Texas real estate agent?

Earnings vary widely depending on factors like location, experience, and work ethic. According to, the average base salary for real estate agents in Texas is $93,627 per year as of 2024. Top earners can make well over $100,000 annually.


Razib is a skilled writer with 5 years of experience specializing in technology, finance, automotive and real estate. A BBA graduate from 2014, Razib's passion for these industries shines through in his informative and engaging content. His ability to break down complex topics and stay current on the latest trends makes him a valuable resource for readers seeking to understand these dynamic fields.

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