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How to Become a Real Estate Agent with No Experience

How to Become a Real Estate Agent with No Experience

How to Become a Real Estate Agent with No Experience

Embarking on a career in real estate is a pursuit that’s both exciting and daunting, especially for those with no prior professional experience in the field. Real estate agents play one of the most crucial roles in the industry, acting as the key facilitators in property transactions and serving as vital links between buyers and sellers. Their importance extends beyond the technical side of their transactional duties; they provide expert guidance, actionable market insights, and personalized service that greatly influence the buying and selling process. 

How to Become a Real Estate Agent with No Experience

The path to becoming a real estate agent, even without any professional experience, has a clear and accessible structure. It starts with understanding and meeting specific licensing requirements, followed by acquiring the necessary education before honing and developing the skills and knowledge essential for success in this dynamic field. Real estate offers a unique opportunity for professional growth and financial success, with the potential to build a fulfilling and lucrative career.

What to Expect

In this guide, we will outline the steps to becoming a real estate agent without the need for a formal degree or any experience, delving into each phase of the journey from securing a license to launching a successful career. Whether you are seeking a complete career change from your boring office job, aspiring to enter the world of real estate straight from school, or wondering how to become a commercial real estate agent working with business properties, this article will provide you with a clear roadmap to achieving your goals. 

Throughout this article, we will explore the key steps of becoming a real estate agent, offer insights into the elements that make a successful career in the industry, and provide practical tips for those making their first moves on this exciting career path.

Steps to Becoming a Real Estate Agent with No Experience

Embarking on a career in real estate as an agent, particularly without any prior industry experience, is a journey defined by continuous learning, sustained growth, and professional transformation. The process has a clear structure that requires a series of deliberate and considerate steps. 

These steps are the essential processes that all aspiring real estate agents need to follow to ensure they’re equipped with the necessary knowledge, credentials, and practical experience needed to thrive in this dynamic field. From building a base of knowledge of licensing requirements to joining a brokerage for hands-on market experience, each phase is critical in laying a strong foundation for a successful career.

How Hard Is It to Become a Real Estate Agent?

Becoming a real estate agent without experience isn’t necessarily easy, but it is straightforward. With a clear set of key steps, aspiring agents can access a clear and detailed roadmap for transitioning into successful real estate professionals. Whether you’re seeking a new career path within the industry or looking to fulfill a long-standing ambition in the real estate sector, these steps will be your guiding light through the initial phase of your journey. 

The steps will encompass the essentials of educational requirements, licensing processes, exam preparation, and the practical steps toward building your career in real estate. Let’s delve into these steps to understand how to become a real estate agent with no experience.

Step 1: Research and Understand the Licensing Requirements in Your Area

Before embarking on a career, the first crucial step is to research and understand how to become a licensed real estate agent, grasping the specific licensing requirements in your area. Real estate licensing is regulated at the state level in the United States, with each state having its own distinct set of rules and requirements. Here’s how you can approach this step:

Visit the State’s Real Estate Commission Website: Most states have a Real Estate Commission or a similar regulatory body, which should have its own website where you can typically find detailed information about the requirements for obtaining a real estate license.

Understand Educational Prerequisites: Keep an eye out for any information about the required pre-licensing education. Most states usually mandate a certain number of hours of formal real estate education before you can take the licensing exam.

Age and Eligibility Criteria: Make a note of any minimum age requirements and any other eligibility criteria that a licensing body might have, such as having a high school diploma or equivalent qualification.

Background Check: Be aware that some states require a detailed background check, including fingerprinting, as part of the licensing process. With this in mind, be totally open and honest about anything they might need to know. 

Application Process: Familiarize yourself with the application process from front to back, paying mind to any fees and all required documentation.

Continuing Education: Some states also require evidence of continuing education to keep a real estate license active.

Understanding these licensing requirements is essential for getting your journey toward becoming a real estate agent off to a smooth start. By following this step to a tee and aligning it with the system in your local area, you can ensure you meet all necessary criteria and are well-prepared for the subsequent steps in the licensing process.

Step 2: Enroll in a Pre-licensing Course and Complete the Necessary Education

Once you’ve familiarized yourself with the licensing requirements for your state, the next step is to enroll in a pre-licensing course. While it can take some time, securing this sort of education is fundamental to gaining the knowledge required for a successful career in the property market, along with literally preparing for the licensing exam. Here’s what this step involves:

Choose a Licensed Real Estate School: Select an education provider licensed or approved by your state’s real estate regulatory body to ensure you don’t waste your time. You can generally find a list of approved and accredited schools on the state’s Real Estate Commission website.

Course Format Options: Depending on your preference and schedule, which will be influenced by the stage you’re at in your personal life, you can choose between in-person classes, online courses, or a hybrid of both. Online courses offer scheduling flexibility, which can be beneficial if you are balancing other commitments, such as a day job or family.

Curriculum and Hours: Real estate pre-licensing courses cover a range of relevant topics, including local property laws, contracts, ethics, real estate finance, and property management. The number of required hours varies from state to state, typically ranging somewhere between 40 and 180 hours.

Costs and Materials: Be aware of the costs involved with pre-licensing education, which can include tuition fees and materials. Some schools may offer packages that include comprehensive study guides, practice exams, and additional resources, while others might only provide course materials.

Complete the Course: Most importantly, you must attend the classes, engage in the learning materials, and complete any assignments or tests. Some states require a final exam at the end of the course before taking the next steps, which you must pass to be eligible for the licensing exam.

Completing a pre-licensing course not only fulfills a key licensing requirement for taking the next steps but also lays a baseline of foundational knowledge essential for a successful career in real estate. Beyond the technical requirement, it should sufficiently prepare you for the next step—taking and passing the real estate licensing exam.

Step 3: Prepare for the Real Estate Licensing Exam

After completing your pre-licensing course, which is great to supplement with additional reading, the next crucial step is preparing for the real estate licensing exam. This exam tests your knowledge of real estate principles, laws, and practices that you have learned during your coursework, with a specific focus on the market you’ll be working in. Here’s how to effectively prepare for the exam:

Understand the Exam Format: Research the written structure of the exam in your state. Most real estate exams are divided into two distinct sections: national real estate principles and laws and a more state-specific section.

Review and Study: Go through all the course materials again, focusing on key concepts, legal regulations, and state-specific real estate practices. Pay special attention to the areas you found most challenging during the course.

Use Study Guides and Prep Courses: Consider investing in additional study guides or enrolling in independent exam preparation courses. Many education providers offer study materials specifically tailored to your state’s exam.

Take Practice Exams: Sitting practice exams in your free time is an excellent way to gauge your knowledge and get familiar with the format and types of questions you can expect. They also help identify any problem areas you need to focus on.

Develop a Study Schedule: Figure out your time commitments, then set a consistent study schedule leading up to the exam date. Regular, focused study sessions can greatly enhance your retention and understanding of the material while setting you up with the right mindset.

Stay Informed on Test Procedures: Be aware of the procedures for the exam day, including the materials you need to bring, the location of the testing center, and the time you should arrive. As a rule, plan to arrive early in case any issues arise.

Manage Stress: Prepare yourself mentally and physically for the big day. This means getting enough rest before the exam, eating healthily so you feel strong, and using effective stress management techniques to stay calm and focused.

By taking plenty of time to prepare for the real estate licensing exam, you increase your chances of passing on your first attempt, streamlining the process of becoming a fully accredited agent. 

Step 4: Pass the Exam and Obtain Your Real Estate License

Passing the real estate licensing exam is perhaps the most pivotal moment in your journey to starting your career as a real estate agent. Here’s what you need to know about this crucial step:

Register for the Exam: Once you feel sufficiently prepared and ready to take on the task, it’s time to register for the exam. The registration process usually involves completing an application and paying a one-time exam fee.

Day of the Exam: On the exam day, allow plenty of time to arrive at the testing center early, keeping any required identification and materials on your person. Note and follow all the rules and procedures of the testing center.

Taking the Exam: The real estate licensing exam is typically computer-based, usually completed on a laptop or computer provided by the examiner. Answer the questions to the best of your knowledge, keeping an eye on the time to ensure you complete all sections. Remember, an attempt at an answer is better than a blank space.

Results: After completing the exam, you will receive your results immediately or within a few days, depending on your state’s procedures. During this waiting period, try not to stress; whatever happens, you can take it again.

Failing the Exam: If you don’t pass the exam, don’t be discouraged or downtrodden by it. Most states allow you to retake the exam, and your results will guide your next attempt. Take time to review the areas where you struggled and prepare to retake the test.

Applying for Your License: Once you pass the exam, you can officially apply for your real estate license. This process typically involves submitting a formal application to your state’s Real Estate Commission, along with providing any necessary documentation and paying some fees.

Post-License Requirements: Some states have specific post-licensing education requirements to guarantee you can continue practicing in the field. Ensure you are completely aware of and comply with these to maintain your license.

Successfully passing your real estate exam and obtaining your license is a massive achievement, laying the groundwork for a career going forward. It marks your official start as a real estate agent, meaning with your license in hand, you are now legally authorized to represent buyers and sellers in real estate transactions.

Step 5: Consider Joining a Reputable Brokerage to Gain Experience and Mentorship

With your real estate license in tow, the next crucial step in building your career is to join a reputable real estate brokerage. While in some states, you can work independently from the jump, joining a good firm is still an essential move for kickstarting your career, especially with no prior experience in the field. Here’s what this step involves:

Why Join a Brokerage: As a new real estate agent, working under a brokerage provides invaluable hands-on work experience and, in many states, the tangible ability to broker deals. Brokerages offer support, practical resources, and time-honored mentorship, all crucial for your development and success in the industry.

Researching Brokerages: Look for brokerages in your area with strong training programs, a good reputation in the industry, and a supportive environment for new hires. Research the culture, commission structure, and support they provide in terms of marketing software and lead generation tools.

Interviewing with Brokerages: Once you’ve collated a list of potential brokerages, schedule some in-person interviews. Remember, this is a two-way process—while they assess if you are a good fit for their team, you should also evaluate if their brokerage can effectively meet your needs and career goals.

Mentorship and Training: Choose a brokerage that offers comprehensive, continuous training programs, mentorship opportunities, and resources for learning on the job. These aspects are vital for further building a strong base of skills and knowledge.

Networking and Learning: Once you join a brokerage, take advantage of any networking opportunities that arise with more experienced agents. Make time to attend training sessions, workshops, and team meetings to learn from others and build your professional network—being present is valuable.

Building Your Career: Use the initial months at the brokerage to build your understanding of the market in your area and the country overall, develop your sales and negotiation skills, and establish your personal brand as a real estate agent.

Joining a reputable brokerage is a significant step in your real estate career journey, putting you face-to-face with the tangible side of the industry. It provides the essential practical experience and professional guidance necessary to grow and succeed as your own businessperson in the industry, especially when starting without prior experience.

As we conclude the section on the essential steps of how to become a real estate agent with no experience, it’s clear that the journey, while requiring a serious degree of dedication and focus, is a structured and achievable path. From the initial research of your state’s licensing requirements to gaining valuable hands-on experience and mentorship at a reputable brokerage, each step will support you in building a solid foundation for your career in real estate.

The Importance of These Steps

These steps, while technically straightforward and simple to follow, are integral to shaping your technical understanding and practical capabilities as a real estate professional. These steps will guide you through the legal and educational prerequisites for your state, prepare you for the critical licensing exam, and, finally, help you transition into the practical world of real estate sales and client service.

Becoming a Successful Real Estate Agent

Knowing how to become a successful real estate agent, especially with no prior experience in the industry, involves more than just fulfilling technical licensing requirements. It’s about cultivating personal habits and professional qualities that propel you toward success. We’ve listed some key insights and tips for new real estate agents on the elements that make a successful real estate agent, along with some crucial advice on what to avoid on the road to success:

Positive Mindset: Top-producing real estate agents maintain a positive mindset throughout the working day, with a firm belief in their ability to succeed. They focus on exciting and promising opportunities, learning from their mistakes rather than getting bogged down by their missteps.

Goal Setting: Successful agents create a pathway to success with clear and measurable goals. They understand the importance of setting daily, weekly, monthly, and annual goals to stay focused and measure progress throughout their careers.

Effective Marketing: Having a robust marketing plan in place is critical for generating leads. Successful agents use new technologies, such as social media, and traditional methods, such as print advertising, to reach a broad customer base and define their target audiences.

Expertise in Your Market: Having authoritative knowledge about your local market is essential. This expertise sets you apart from competitors and increases your credibility and appeal with clients.

Building Relationships: Fostering strong relationships with clients and fellow professionals is key to a healthy career. Successful agents understand the importance of actively listening to clients’ needs and maintaining long-lasting relationships with their peers.

Active on Social Media: Utilizing social media effectively has become a crucial facet of being a modern real estate agent. Platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter (aka X) significantly enhance your visibility and client engagement.

Use of Technology: Embracing the right software tools and technology can make a massive difference in your marketing and client management efforts. This includes having an engaging website and using a reliable customer relationship management software.

Continuous Learning and Adaptability: The real estate market is constantly evolving, and the most successful agents stay updated on market trends, technologies, and best practices.

Mentorship: Mentorship from the more experienced agents in your professional sphere can provide invaluable insights and learning opportunities, accelerating your growth in the field.

Customer-Centric Approach: Remember, you’re in a service industry, so always prioritize your client’s interests and needs. Successful agents are more consultants than salespeople, offering valuable guidance to clients through some of the most significant decisions of their lives.

Remember, every agent’s journey is unique, and what works for one won’t always work for another. It’s essential to find your own path, stay true to your code of ethics, and continuously strive for professional growth. With dedication, perseverance, and a thirst for education, you can carve out a successful career in real estate, even without experience.


Throughout this article, we’ve navigated the steps necessary to embark on a career as a real estate agent, even without experience. 

Stay Focused

The journey to becoming a successful real estate agent demands dedication, perseverance, and a commitment to continuous self-improvement. We explored what it takes, emphasizing the importance of a positive mindset, effective marketing strategies, relationship building, and leveraging technology.

Follow Your Ambitions

To all aspiring agents, remember that your lack of experience is merely a starting point, not a limitation. The path to success is paved with opportunities for growth, development, and accomplishment. Embrace each step of this journey with enthusiasm, dedicate yourself to understanding every corner of the industry, engage with mentors and peers, and remain adaptable to the ever-changing landscape.

Next Steps

Your career holds immense potential. With hard work, a customer-centric approach, and a passion for the field, you can do remarkable things. So, take these insights as your guide and embark confidently on your journey to becoming a real estate agent. 

For more insightful articles about building a career in real estate and the market as a whole, check out our blog today