Becoming a Real Estate Agent - How to get started

Real Estate Agent with Long and Foster Real Estate, Inc.

Getting Started

Getting Started Below is a brief outline of how to get started in real estate.
  1. Our state-approved Principles and Practice of Real Estate course offered through our highly-acclaimed Long & Foster Institute of Real Estate® (at your local training center) is approved by Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia, and Washington, DC to fulfill the classroom prerequisite for taking the real estate exam. This course will give you a foundation of real estate law and theory required to pass the state exam. The course covers all the information you need to study for the licensing exam, including the technical aspects of real estate-math, law, and theory. In Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, and Washington, DC, you are required by law to take the Principles and Practice of Real Estate classroom course. In Virginia you may take a classroom, correspondence, or online Principles of Real Estate course. However, the class exam must be taken at the training center by appointment. The course is given by the Long & Foster Institute of Real Estate/Foster Real Estate School, and many degree-granting institutions and community colleges. It is highly recommended that you take an exam prep course before the state licensing examination. We offer an eight hour exam prep class each month, or you may choose a computer-based review through our RE-Campus. Call 1-800-543-3365 for schedule and location information.
  2. To register for an upcoming Principles and Practice of Real Estate course, read our informational brochure. Course attendance does not require nor guarantee affiliation with Long & Foster.
  3. Immediately following the class, Long & Foster Institute of Real Estate test you on the material covered. When passed, you qualify to take the state exam.
  4. Schedule to take the real estate exam with the testing firm in that state. We will provide you with information on where to go in your state. Take the state licensing examination. Depending on your state, your exam will be administered at either a Promissor or PSI testing center.
  5. After the test, you will need to determine your license status (see below). Once you pass the state exam, you must affiliate with a real estate brokerage firm, such as Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.®, to activate your license.

    You Can:
    1. Activate your license: List, sell, and lease property while working under the auspices of a brokerage firm.
    2. Activate your license with a referral company. This license is considered active because you can receive compensation for referrals to another agent, but you do not perform the fiduciary duties of a licensed agent, nor are you responsible for most profession dues and fees. (See Metro Referrals for more information.)
    3. Place your license on inactive status: Your license can be activated in the future if you have paid an annual fee to maintain the inactive status to the state Real Estate Board and meet the necessary hour requirements at the time of activation. It may be necessary to take additional classroom hours if the licensing requirement has increased, but you don't need to take the exam again.
If you choose to affiliate with Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.®, you will join our post-license training program, Star Builders®, which will teach you the practical aspects of building a business, listing and selling properties. Following our classroom and field training, you will be fully prepared to launch into a successful real estate career. Passing the real estate exam is the minimum requirement. We also offer other classes instructing students in the practical aspects of real estate sales, such as finance, contracts, and agency. These classes are available to Sales Associates pursuing an active status license with Long & Foster, Inc.®. We offer many other continuing education courses as well as those to acquire specialized real estate designations.

Start selling!

You are not required to take the class with us; other real estate firms also offer state-approved classes to prepare you for the real estate exam. The advantage of taking the class with Long & Foster Institute of Real Estate is our commitment to helping our students get the best possible start in their new career.   Hour Requirements
The hour requirements for this course vary by state. Current requirements are:

Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia applicants have one year from the date they passed the licensing exam to do one of the above, while Washington, DC applicants have six months.

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