Florida has always been a hot spot for individuals to move to; however, it’s become even more popular in recent years. Real estate prices have skyrocketed, which has led many people to decide to become Orlando realtors or brokers.
Securing a real estate license in Orlando isn’t as simple as taking a test. Most aspiring realtors must take a pre-licensure course, apply for the exam, pass it, and find a broker before receiving an active Florida real estate license. Below, we’ll delve a bit more into the ins and outs of how to get a real estate license in Orlando.
Steps to Getting an Orlando Real Estate License
There are many steps anyone wishing to secure an Orlando realtor license must follow. These guidelines are set by the Florida Real Estate Commission, which is a seven-member commission appointed by the governor to regulate real estate licenses and educate the state’s realtors and brokers about nuances in the field. FREC appointees serve four-year terms.
FREC requirements vary depending on whether someone is looking to secure a Florida real estate license for sales associates (realtors) or brokers. Prospective realtors must meet certain age and educational requirements as well as proof of legal status.
Generally, an aspiring broker must have been a sales associate for at least two years before proceeding with pre-licensure requirements.
Know that simply passing pre-licensure coursework doesn’t necessarily mean you will be able to secure an Orlando, Florida, real estate license. Your ability to do so is contingent upon your ability to pass a knowledge test and background check and find a broker to work with (if seeking sales associate Florida real estate licensure).
Each stage in the process has its respective fees and timelines, as discussed below.
Orlando Pre-Licensing Education
State standards require anyone wishing to become an Orlando realtor (sales associate) to complete a 63-hour training class. Florida real estate agents with at least two years of sales associate experience or who have previously acquired a broker license in another state are eligible to take a 72-hour, FREC-approved broker pre-licensure course.
Prospective Orlando realtors or brokers don’t have to be Florida residents to enroll in the pre-licensure classes described above. Realtor or broker candidates must instead meet the following requirements:
- Be 18 years or older
- Have completed high school or the equivalent
- Have a valid U.S. Social Security number
Florida real estate pre-licensure education classes can be taken either in person or online. Prospective realtors or brokers looking to find FREC-approved real estate pre-licensure education course providers should visit the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation (DBPR). There they can view a listing of different providers, their contact information, and details about their programs.
According to the FREC, pre-licensure courses range from $100 to $500.
Passing the Course Final Exam
Aspiring Orlando realtor brokers must pass the final exam at the end of their 72-hour pre-licensing education course.
The 63-hour Florida real estate sales associate test covers:
- Introductory or foundational information about the real estate industry
- Laws and regulations that apply to real estate and how to remain compliant with them
- Relationships with real estate agencies
- Real estate financing options, including mortgages
The 72-hour real estate broker test covers:
- Opening, owning, and managing a real estate office
- Supervising Florida realtors
- Escrow and recovery fund management and other aspects of real estate finance
- Real estate and business valuation
- Market research, sales comparables, and cost depreciation
- Closing real estate deals
- Land use and environmental issues
- Real estate investment and property management
- Federal taxation
This initial broker exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions. You have three hours to complete the exam. A passing score is 75% or higher.
You can generally take these tests a second time within the same calendar year if you fail them on the first attempt. Anyone who fails their second attempt at the Florida real estate sales associate or broker exam must retake the 63- or 72-hour course before they can retake the licensure exam.
Orlando Fingerprinting Requirement
Florida officials require prospective Orlando realtors to electronically submit their fingerprints to the DBPR at least five days before submitting their licensing application. The state agency will use your fingerprints to run a background check on you.
Promissor (Pearson VUE) is one company that offers electronic fingerprinting; however, the FREC recommends using a LiveScan service provider.
Prospective realtors or brokers wishing to undergo electronic fingerprinting must produce a Social Security number. They must also provide the fingerprinting technician with the appropriate originating agency identifier (ORI) number, FL920010Z, for real estate sales and brokers.
Each fingerprinting provider sets its own fees, but this service typically ranges between $50 and $80. Electronic fingerprinting takes only 5-10 minutes to perform and remains valid for up to 12 months after they’re taken.
Applying for Licensure in Orlando Florida
All prospective Orlando realtors or brokers who have completed their respective 63- or 72-hour pre-licensure education courses can apply to take the appropriate Florida state real estate exams. Applicants must submit the application fee to the DBPR and the $83.75 fee (which can be paid by mail or online).
DBPR reviews applications and, once finished, has Pearson VUE follow up with you regarding your eligibility to take the exam. This review process can take anywhere from 10 to 30 days. Once approved, you can register to take the exam online or in person at an approved testing facility. The cost of the licensing exam is $36.75.
Passing the Florida Real Estate Commission Licensing Exam
The final step a realtor candidate needs to take to become a licensed real estate agent in Orlando is passing the licensing exam. Pearson VUE will send an email with the subject “Authorization to Test” once the state has decided on your eligibility to become an Orlando realtor or broker.
That same email will also include a 9-digit candidate identification number – you’ll need this when registering for any Florida real estate licensing exam with Pearson VUE.
Since the Florida real estate exam is multiple choice and computerized, you’ll receive your results instantly after completing it. Again, you only need to score a 75 out of 100 to pass the test.
An inactive Orlando, Florida, realtor license or an active broker license will be accessible via the DBPR website within seven to ten days after you pass your exam. Your Orlando real estate sales associate license will only become active once you submit proof of your affiliation with a supervising broker to the FREC.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Real Estate License in Orlando?
A common question aspiring realtors or brokers ask is how long they can expect it to take to become licensed for real estate in Orlando. A general timeline is between two to five months; however, various factors can affect this timeline, including:
- How quickly you complete the pre-licensure education courses (many are self-paced)
- Whether you pass the licensing exam on the first attempt or need to retake it
- Errors on your Florida realtor or broker application that need correcting
- Information suggesting you have a prior criminal history
- The volume of applicants the DBPR receives around the time they receive yours
- How long it takes you to find a supervising broker and submit that information to the FREC
Exceptional Cases That May Lead to Expedited Licensure
Some exceptions to real estate agent and broker licensing rules may allow some individuals to receive a real estate license for Florida quicker than others. These situations include:
- Florida attorneys: Regulations allow lawyers in good standing with the state bar to skip the pre-licensure education classes and skip ahead to taking the licensing exam.
- Real estate brokers from other states: Individuals who have previously been awarded broker licenses in other states that have reciprocity agreements with Florida may be eligible for a transfer of their professional license.
Only eight states currently have mutual recognition agreements with Florida. These are (in alphabetical order): Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Mississippi, Nebraska, and Rhode Island.
Not having to take the multi-hour educational courses can significantly fast-track an applicant’s request for a license, meaning they could secure one in less than a month.
Summary of How to Get a Real Estate License in Orlando
In summary, if you’re curious about how to get licensed for real estate in Orlando, the sales associate or broker licensure process involves taking the appropriate pre-licensure education classes, undergoing fingerprinting, applying to sit for the exam, and taking it once approved.
Aspiring Orlando real estate sales agents must find a supervising broker and submit their contact information to the FREC before their license becomes active. Since brokers aren’t subject to this requirement, they can get their Orlando brokerage up and running within as little as two weeks when their updated license is posted on the DBPR website.
Whether you’re interested in launching your real estate career or gaining more responsibility in your field, there’s no better time to do so than now. Enroll in the necessary courses to grow your Orlando real estate career now.