Becoming a real estate agent in Texas can put you on a career path where you control your time and income, but you have to earn a real estate license.
So you decided that you want to become a Texas real estate agent. It’s a decision that can put you on a career path where you have more control over your schedule and income, but first, you have to go through the process to earn your Texas real estate license. Let’s go over the steps to obtain your real estate license in Texas.
Complete the required pre-licensing courses
Apply for a license through the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC)
Prepare for the Texas real estate exam
Complete a background check
Pass the Texas real estate exam
In a nutshell, that’s it. Follow these steps, and you’ve opened the door to a new career! But for those of you who would like a little more detail on each step, let’s pull these 5 simple steps out of the nutshell and give them a closer look.
If you meet the minimum general requirements for getting a Texas real estate license, you can focus your attention on the education requirements. You don’t need a college degree to become a real estate agent, but the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) does require applicants to complete six required courses:
Principles of Real Estate I (Course #121) - 30 hours
Principles of Real Estate II (Course #122) - 30 hours
Real Estate Finance (Course #451) - 30 hours
Law of Contracts (Course #1251) - 30 hours
Promulgated Contracts (Course #351) - 30 hours
Law of Agency (Course #1151) - 30 hours
You must successfully pass each real estate course before you can take the pre-license exam. If you’re doing the math on that, you’ll notice there’s a total of 180 classroom hours to meet the real estate education requirement. But you don’t have to rework your life to fit the courses into your busy schedule.
AceableAgent's Texas Pre-license course can be taken anytime and anywhere on your smartphone, tablet, or computer. It’s a fast and convenient way to get a real estate license in Texas. With AceableAgent, real estate school is in session whenever and wherever you choose!
Once you’ve completed your mandatory real estate courses, it’s time to get the license application process started. The quickest way to do that is online, starting with getting registered with the Texas Real Estate Commission. Once you’re registered, TREC will email a username and password that allows you to create an account and use the TREC Online Services.
One thing to watch out for is the name used on the account. The “Account Owner Contact Information” needs to be exactly the same as the name on your driver's license. After the account is set up, you’ll receive an ID and barcode that must be used to submit additional documents and schedule the licensing exam.
Once you’ve set up your TREC account, you can submit a Texas Real Estate Salesperson application along with the one-time application fee.
Note: E-mail TREC your certificates to prove you’ve completed the necessary coursework. It is important to do this as soon as possible, as you cannot schedule your licensing exam until TREC has processed your completion certificates and sent you your exam eligibility letter.
It typically takes TREC between 15-21 business days to process your real estate license application and send out your eligibility letter. While you're waiting, you can use that time to prep for the real estate exam
Exam prep is different for everyone, but practice tests — like those included with the AceableAgent Texas Real Estate Course — are scientifically proven to be one of the best types of exam prep you can do. AceableAgent also offers packages with PrepAgent, an industry-leading exam prep platform built to help you ace your exam. And when your eligibility letter does arrive, it will come with an exam candidate handbook from TREC and PearsonVUE (the folks who administer the test) to help you prepare even more.
The Texas real estate exam is made up of two sections: a national section that is 85 questions long with a time limit of 150 minutes and a state section that is composed of 40 questions with a 90-minute time limit. You will take both sections at the same appointment.
If you’re tempted to skip the exam prep, keep in mind that you will only have three attempts to pass the exam. People who fail to pass the exam after three tries must do additional real estate training. For each failed portion of the exam (national, state, or both), you will need to take an additional 30 hours of education.
Once you receive your eligibility letter, it's time to schedule your required fingerprinting on TREC's website. You don't have to have a completely clean record, and even if you have criminal convictions, you still qualify if you pass the state's moral character determination process.
Once your application has been processed and you receive a TREC ID number, you’re eligible to take the Texas real estate exam. The test is administered by PearsonVUE, which also handles the scheduling.
Your test can be scheduled online by:
Creating an account using your ID
Paying the fee
Picking a date, time, and location
There are testing locations across the state in most municipalities, so finding one nearby shouldn’t be difficult. Pearson VUE will provide additional details as far as what to expect during the exam, general requirements, and what you’ll need to bring with you on test day.
As mentioned earlier, the Texas real estate exam is broken into two parts: a national section and a state-specific section. You’ll have a total of four hours to complete both sections. Once you’re done, you’ll get your score immediately. (How’s that for instant gratification?) Celebrate your success, but understand that the scores must be sent to the state real estate commission before a license is issued.
While you can earn your license by passing the Texas real estate exam, to activate it, you’ll need a licensed broker to sponsor you. Technically, TREC licenses real estate agents to act on behalf of licensed brokers. This means you can’t become an active real estate agent unless you have a licensed Texas broker as a sponsor.
That’s why, rather than waiting until you pass the state exam, you should start your broker search earlier in the process — like during the time you’re waiting for TREC to send you your eligibility letter. Then, once you find a broker you want to work with, you can submit a salesperson broker sponsorship form.
If you get this taken care of before passing the exam, the TREC will be able to review your test score and salesperson sponsorship form at the same time. That will allow them to email the active real estate license to you and your broker without further delay.
And there you have it. You’re just 5 simple steps away from getting your Texas real estate license!