Americans were on the move in 2020, and many of them moved to Florida! The Sunshine State is a popular destination for relocation, with an estimated 330,000 new residents settling here between April 2020 and April 2021. If this trend continues, real estate may become a booming career choice over the next decade.
In order to work as a real estate agent in Florida, you need to obtain a license. The process involves a lot of work, but is still accessible to many people. Let’s take a look at the steps to obtain a real estate license in Florida.
Who can get a real estate license in Florida?
Anyone who is 18 years old or older can apply to get a real estate license in Florida. You must also have a Social Security number and hold at least a high school diploma or its equivalent.
5 Steps to obtain a Florida real estate license
There are five general steps to getting a real estate license in Florida.
1. Complete the required education
There are 63 hours of approved pre-licensing coursework that you must complete before you can get a real estate license. These classes focus on real estate laws, principles and practice, and real estate math.
You must receive a score of at least 70% on your final exam to pass.
There are some exemptions for completing the required real estate courses. Anyone approved to practice law in Florida does not need to take the required coursework. They just need to attach a copy of their current Florida Bar card to the exam application. Additionally, if you hold a 4-year agree (or higher) in real estate you may also be exempt. Attach a copy of your transcripts to your application for review.
2. Get a background check
Once you pass your exam, you will need to submit your fingerprints to the Department of Business & Professional Regulation for a background check. This must be done at least five days before submitting your license application.
3. Apply for a license
At least five days after submitting your fingerprints, you can apply for your Florida real estate license. There is a fee payable when submitting your application.
4. Pass the Florida Real Estate Salesperson exam
You can sit the real estate salesperson exam after your license application is approved. This two-part exam covers both state and national real estate requirements. It is administered by Pearson VUE and can be taken in a variety of ways, including online.
To pass the test, you must get at least 75 of 100 questions correct.
5. Find a broker to work with
You must be affiliated with a licensed broker to activate your Florida real estate license. The sponsoring broker needs to complete and submit a short form to activate your license.
Renewing your real estate license in Florida
Real estate licenses in Florida must be renewed periodically to keep them active. While the process is less involved than getting your license the first time, there are ongoing education requirements that must be met to renew your real estate license.
Your initial license will last 18 to 24 months, depending on when you passed the real estate salesperson exam. The first time you renew, you must pass 45 hours of state-approved coursework that builds on the pre-licensing education classes.
If you do not complete this first set of renewal courses before you license expires, you will have to apply for your license all over again. This means you will need to retake the pre-license courses and pass the state exam as if you will a new applicant.
After your first renewal, you will need to take 14 hours of continuing education classes approved by the Florida Real Estate Commission. These classes need to be taken every two years before your license expires.
Professional Liability for real estate agents
Once you’ve obtained your real estate license, you may want to consider getting a Professional Liability insurance policy. Real estate agents spend a lot of time providing advice and recommendations to their clients. If your advice were to result in a financial loss for a client, you could be held liable and forced to pay damages.
Also known as Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance, Professional Liability insurance protects your business against claims of negligence, misrepresentations, or mistakes. Professional Liability claims are typically made by clients who allege some form of financial damage as a result of your services, products or employees.
A Professional Liability policy can help shield your business and personal finances by paying legal expenses, including settlements and judgements, that result from relevant claims or lawsuits. It also helps protect you against baseless claims, which can be just as costly to defend against as claims with merit.
BizInsure can help Florida real estate agents find the right Professional Liability insurance for their small business needs. Click, compare and buy a policy in 10 minutes—perfect for busy real estate agents like yourself!
Learn more about Professional Liability insurance and get quotes from leading insurers today.