How to Get a Real Estate License in Washington (2023 Guide) (2023)

Are you looking for a new career with flexible working hours? A job as a real estate agent could be just the job you've been looking for. You set the hours you are willing to work along with the properties you sell, giving you more control over your pay than other jobs.

Basic Requirements for a Washington Real Estate License

In Washington, you must be 18 or older to help people buy and sell real estate. You will also need your high school diploma or GED as proof of high school graduation. It is also mandatory to pass repeated checks in the state before and after licensing. To obtain a license, it is necessary to go through several steps. If you meet these basic requirements, you can get started right away. Read on to find out what you need to do to start your new career in real estate as soon as possible.

How do I get a real estate license in Washington?

Once you are sure that you meet the basic requirements in that state, you can focus on the licensing process. Follow the 6 steps below and start the process today!

(Video) How To Get Your Real Estate License in Washington

1. Educate yourself on the necessary courses.

Washington State has 90 hours of mandatory training for real estate agents. They are divided into two parts: Basics and Practice. Before deciding where to take these courses, do some research as there are several options available to you. Some courses are offered in person, others online, at your own pace. Companies offering these courses charge different fees depending on the other offers available to them. For example, some companies offer you exam preparation courses after your training so that you will be successful even after the courses.

Things you will learn in these courses include:

  • How to write and complete a contract with your future buyers and sellers.
  • What are the regulations and conditions for renting and managing real estate?
  • In this way, you support your clients in financing their future real estate.

2. Pass the compulsory exam in the subject.

In Washington, you must pass two exams before you can apply for a license. This first exam is based on the 90 hours of the course you just completed. Therefore, you should take the exam while you still have new knowledge. You need a score of at least 75% to pass.

3. Submit fingerprints and background check.

To become a licensed real estate agent in Washington, you must pass a background check. It may take up to two weeks to complete the procedure. So, start the process as soon as possible. You can make an appointment online and the cost is $50. To submit your fingerprints to the government, you can contact your local police station or a private fingerprinting company. If you have already taken the exam in the second step, you may have already submitted your fingerprints to the test center.

There are different fees for submitting fingerprints, depending on where you want to be fingerprinted. So call for a quote to save some money. In this career, you have to constantly pass background checks. So, keep your record clean if you want to continue working as a real estate agent in Washington. Expect the next checkup in 6 years.

You will not be automatically disqualified if you have a criminal record. It depends on the type of crime and when you committed it.

(Video) Washington Real Estate Exam 2023 (100 Questions with Explained Answers)

4. Pass the real estate agent exam.

This test takes more than 3 hours and you have to complete two parts. The national part consists of 100 questions, and the state part of 30. All questions are multiple choice. Be sure to bring two IDs with you, including photos and signatures.

If you feel you need them, there are many exam preparation resources available online. Some of these are included in the course fees you paid in the first step. The required score for the national test is 71% or better, and for the state section a minimum of 75% is required to pass the score.

5. Find a company to sponsor you.

You can't start selling homes right after you get your Washington State license; You must first be sponsored by an existing company. You should make a list of questions and talk to agents in the area you want to work. You will also want to decide what types of property you want to sell as some companies specialize in different types such as residential properties, lake homes or commercial properties. Call to find the company that suits you best because you will be staying with them for a while after you get your permit.

Some of the questions you might want to ask your prospective sponsor include:

  • What is your share of the profit? 50/50 or something else?
  • Do you pay for the continuing education courses required to renew your license?
  • Do you supply office supplies such as business cards and signs?
  • How many agents are currently working for you?
  • Is there room for a salary increase in your company?
  • What are you looking for in a new real estate agent?
  • Does your company offer benefits?

6. Apply for a real estate license.

Once you've completed the required courses, passed both exams, been fingerprinted and passed the background check, you can apply for your license. You can do this online. There is a fee of about $150 for your license.

AgainWashingtonReal Estate Agents Need an LLC?

Yes, if you want to start your own real estate business, you may want to protect your personal wealth while increasing your credibility. Starting a real estate company can help you achieve these goals.

(Video) How to Become a Licensed Real Estate Agent in Washington State

Create your Washington LLC today

How much does a real estate license cost in Washington?

There is a fee for both exams (and their retakes), as well as all the steps listed above. Expect to pay about $400 in fees, plus what the educational company charges you for courses and/or exam preparation.

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

Some of these processes are status dependent, such as background checks. The tests depend on how quickly you can get an appointment and how quickly you complete your courses. If you work at a steady pace and pass all your exams in the first attempt, you can start your professional life in a matter of months.

How do I renew my real estate license in Washington?

Your Washington state real estate license expires after two years. Therefore, be sure to restore them in advance. You must take some continuing education courses to stay compliant, pay a new license fee, and apply online or by mail. After the first renewal, you will have to attend fewer courses for future renewals.

Is it worth it to get a real estate license in Washington?

Yes, depending on where you are selling and what type of property you are selling, Washington is a great state to become a real estate agent. The average home value in some cities is around $1,000,000, and you get a portion of that retail price by helping to buy/sell a home. The average salary for a real estate agent in this state is over $50,000 a year, with top salespeople making over $100,000 a year. You also have one of the first opportunities to buy and flip your home, resulting in a higher potential income.

(Video) 10 Tips to Pass Your Real Estate Exam in 2023

Frequently asked questions

Which cities in Washington state have the highest paid real estate agents?

Cities with the highest paid agents are Medina, Clyde Hill, Mercer Island, Sammamish and Bellevue. Their average home value ranges from just under a million dollars to over two million dollars.

Does Washington have real estate licensing reciprocity with other states?

No, there is no technical reciprocity, but you can waive your education if you are licensed in another state by applying for a waiver. You must prove that you have a license in another state. You must also continue to submit to background checks and other requirements for that state.

Is it hard to become a real estate agent in Washington?

It depends on how you learn and what learning materials you use. Some people can get by without exam preparation classes, but others need extra support to get a passing grade.

What is the difference between a real estate agent and a realtor in Washington?

Since Washington requires you to pass the realtor exam to become a licensed broker, there is no difference between the two. The only difference between two people in this career is how long they have been on the job. For example, you cannot start buying and selling real estate on your own, but you can do so after being sponsored by a more experienced real estate agent.

Is there anything else I need to know before embarking on this career?

Yes, Washington has a one-hour limit on the number of classes you can take each day. You will not be credited for more than seven and a half hours. So even if you rush the course, it takes nine days of study between the courses and the final exam.



How to Get a Real Estate License in Washington (2023 Guide)? ›

It takes an average of four (4) months to obtain your real estate license in Washington State. However, many people take far less or far more time to get their Washington real estate license. You can obtain a license in just a few weeks. Or, you can take your time and earn your license over a year.

How long does it take to get your real estate license in WA? ›

It takes an average of four (4) months to obtain your real estate license in Washington State. However, many people take far less or far more time to get their Washington real estate license. You can obtain a license in just a few weeks. Or, you can take your time and earn your license over a year.

How to schedule Washington real estate exam? ›

To schedule by phone, call PSI toll-free at 855-746-8168 from 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. (Pacific Time) Monday through Thursday, 5:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Friday and 6:30 AM to 3:00 PM on Saturday. You can also schedule your exam by mail. Look up instructions on this PSI document.

What is the hardest state to get your real estate license? ›

Of all states, Colorado and Texas come on top as the hardest in terms of granting a real estate license. Each of the states requires some education and a test, which you must pass before being issued with a real estate license.

How much does it cost to get a real estate license in Washington state? ›

License Application Fee: $31.50

There are a few fees associated with getting the physical real estate license in hand. Currently the Washington State Department of Licensing charges a $5 license printing fee. There's also a $26.50 license certification fee.

How many questions is the Washington real estate exam? ›

The Washington real estate broker exam includes 100 questions on the national portion and 30 questions on the state portion.

How many times can you fail the real estate exam in Washington state? ›

You simply have to reschedule your exam through Pearson VUE and pay the $54 exam fee. If you fail one portion of the exam 3 times, you must take an additional 30 hours of qualifying real estate education.

How many questions are on the WA State Brokers exam? ›

The Washington broker exam is actually two tests in one. There are 100 questions for the national portion and 30 questions for the state portion.

How many questions are on the Washington managing broker exam? ›

Answer: There are 200 questions on the exam. A broker candidate has to score 75% on the exam to pass.

How long do most people study for real estate exam? ›

You should study for the real estate exam for at least several weeks before your test date. The whole point of taking your pre-licensing courses is to prepare you, first for the exam, and then for your work as an agent, so really, you should be thinking of your courses as exam prep time as well.

What state is the easiest real estate exam? ›

According to our analysis, Massachusetts is the best state for Real Estate examinations in the US. There, most candidates have it relatively simple. This is true since the state only needs 40 hours of pre-licensing training. Before sitting for the test, you must first complete a state-approved real estate school.

How hard is Oregon real estate exam? ›

Is the Oregon real estate exam hard? The national part of the broker exam has 80 questions, and the state-specific part of the exam has 50 questions. All of the questions are multiple-choice. To pass the test, you must receive a 75% or higher.

What state do realtors make the most money? ›

The following are the 10 states where real estate agents earn, on average, the most money:
  • New York: $111,800 (average real estate agent salary)
  • Massachusetts: $84,180.
  • Connecticut: $79,780.
  • Alaska: $79,360.
  • Colorado: $76,850.
  • Utah: $75,170.
  • California: $74,140.
  • Texas: $72,830.
Jul 28, 2020

What state has the highest commission for real estate? ›

New York City has the highest average real estate commission rate in the developed world and in the United States.

Which state has the most realtors? ›

Of those agents, there are 1.6 million Realtors®, as of November 2022, according to a 2022 NAR report. That same NAR report found Florida has the most registered Realtors®, with 223,617 members. California ranks a close second with 215,4772 Realtors®.

What is the average realtor salary in Washington state? ›

$77,400 is the 25th percentile. Salaries below this are outliers. $122,700 is the 75th percentile.

How much does the average realtor make in Washington? ›

Salaries by years of experience in Washington State
Years of experiencePer year
1 to 2 years$75,820
3 to 5 years-
6 to 9 years$96,414
More than 10 years$94,460
1 more row

How long does a WA real estate license last? ›

How long can my Washington real estate license remain inactive? You may remain inactive as long as you'd like but you'll need to renew your license every two years.

How many math questions are on the real estate? ›

How to Prepare for Math on the Real Estate Exam. While details vary by state, you can generally expect to encounter between 150 and 200 multiple choice questions on the real estate exam. Of those, roughly 10-15% involve math, which translates to between 15 and 30 questions per exam.

What does it take to become a realtor in Washington state? ›

You must successfully complete 90 hours of approved real estate education within a two-year time frame before you can take the broker's exam. The 90 hours of education must consist of a 60-hour course in Real Estate Fundamentals and a 30-hour course in Real Estate Practices.

How many questions are on the written test in Washington? ›

The DOL written test questions will be multiple-choice, covering road signs, traffic laws, and safe driving practices. There will be 40 questions on your exam, and you'll need at least 32 questions answered correctly to pass and to be eligible for your driver's permit.

What are the requirements to get a real estate license in Washington state? ›

Successfully complete 90 hours of approved real estate education within 3 years before applying for the exam. This education must include: 30 hours of brokerage management 30 hours of business management 30 hours of advanced real estate law Pass the managing broker's Exam.

How long does it take to get good at real estate? ›

Whether you are an independent real estate agent or working for a larger firm, the road to success may take a little bit of time. But exactly how long does it take to become successful in real estate? It can take anywhere from six months to several years of continuous hard work to build a successful business.

What are the requirements to hold a real estate Licence in WA? ›

  • be at least 18 years old.
  • be a fit and proper person of good character and repute.
  • hold a current National Police Certificate.
  • hold one of the prescribed qualifications.
  • have at least two years of continuous full-time experience in the real estate industry.
  • have sufficient assets and financial resources.

How do real estate agents get paid in Washington state? ›

In Washington, there is no government mandate that dictates the commission rate for real estate agents. However, it is customary for sellers to pay the 6% real estate agent commission from the final proceeds. Usually, 3% of the commission goes to the listing agent, and 3% goes to the buyer's agent.

What are the pros and cons of being a real estate agent? ›

The Pros and Cons of a Real Estate Career
  • Pro #1. Achieving Freedom. ...
  • Pro #2. Feeling Responsible. ...
  • Pro #3. Being Respected. ...
  • Pro #4. Excitement. ...
  • Con #1. Having Nothing to Do. ...
  • Con #2. Doing the Wrong Things. ...
  • Con #3. Weird Working Hours. ...
  • Con #4. Irregular Income.

Can I use my Washington real estate license in another state? ›

If your home state is included in a mutual real estate reciprocity agreement, you're able to transfer your real estate license from your state to the target state upon the successful completion of their state-specific educational requirements and exam.

What is the difference between a real estate agent and a broker in Washington state? ›

However, there is a distinct difference between a real estate broker vs agent. Only brokers can work independently, own real estate firms, and manage agents, and agents must work under a sponsoring broker, which prohibits them from working independently.

Can a felon be a real estate agent in Washington state? ›

A felony or misdemeanor will not disqualify an applicant for Washington real estate licensure.


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