Real Estate

How to Become a Real Estate Agent: A Step-by-Step Guide

Becoming a real estate agent can be a lucrative and rewarding career choice. With the right steps and dedication, you can embark on a path that offers both financial and professional satisfaction. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to become a real estate agent.

Step 1: Understand the Role

Before diving into the process, it’s crucial to understand what a real estate agent does. A real estate agent helps clients buy, sell, and rent properties. They act as intermediaries between buyers and sellers, negotiate deals, and ensure all transactions are legally compliant. For more insights into the day-to-day responsibilities, check out this detailed overview of a real estate agent’s duties.

Step 2: Meet the Basic Requirements

Each state in the U.S. has specific requirements for becoming a real estate agent, but some general criteria include:

  • Age: You must be at least 18 or 19 years old, depending on the state.
  • Education: You must have a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Background Check: A clean criminal record is often necessary.

For specific state requirements, visit the National Association of Realtors (NAR) website.

Step 3: Complete Pre-Licensing Education

Enrolling in a pre-licensing course is a mandatory step. The number of hours required can vary by state but generally ranges from 60 to 130 hours. These courses cover essential topics such as real estate principles, practices, and legal aspects. Accredited real estate schools or online programs can provide these courses. Explore options at Kaplan Real Estate Education.

Step 4: Pass the Licensing Exam

After completing the pre-licensing education, you must pass the state licensing exam. The exam typically consists of two parts: a national portion covering general real estate principles and a state-specific portion. Preparation is key, so consider utilizing study guides and practice exams available at Real Estate Exam Scholar.

Step 5: Activate Your Real Estate License

Once you pass the exam, you need to submit your licensing application to your state’s real estate board. This process may include a background check and fingerprinting. Upon approval, you will receive your real estate license. For more detailed information on the application process, visit your state’s real estate commission website.

Step 6: Join a Brokerage

As a newly licensed real estate agent, you must work under a licensed broker. A brokerage provides the necessary resources, training, and support to help you start your career. It’s important to choose a brokerage that aligns with your career goals and offers a good training program. Learn more about choosing the right brokerage at

Step 7: Build Your Professional Network

Networking is crucial in the real estate industry. Join professional organizations such as the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and local real estate associations. Attend industry events, seminars, and workshops to connect with other professionals and potential clients. Check out Inman for upcoming real estate events.

Step 8: Continue Education and Professional Development

Real estate is a dynamic field that requires continuous learning. Most states require agents to complete continuing education courses to maintain their license. These courses help you stay updated on industry trends, laws, and best practices. For ongoing education, consider resources available at Real Estate Express.

Step 9: Market Yourself

Effective marketing is essential to your success as a real estate agent. Develop a strong online presence through a professional website and active social media profiles. Utilize local SEO strategies to attract potential clients in your area. For tips on digital marketing for real estate agents, visit Placester.


Becoming a real estate agent requires dedication, education, and strategic networking. By following these steps and continually investing in your professional development, you can build a successful career in real estate. For additional resources and detailed guides, visit the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

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