Aside from food and clothing, a place to live is one of the most basic necessities of man. This means the industry of real estate NEVER runs out of demand.
And with the housing market booming, it’s no wonder there are a lot of applicants eyeing to become a licensed real estate agent and take advantage of people needing a realtor.
So, without further ado, here are the steps on how to get your Rhode Island real estate license!
Four Steps to Get Your Real Estate Agent License in Rhode Island
#1 Complete at Least 45 Hours of Real Estate Classes
You must get your pre-licensing education from an approved real estate school in Rhode Island.
You can choose to have your classes from one of the following:
- Access America Real Estate (Coventry)
- Bellevue Real Estate School (Newport)
- Century 21 FastTrack Real Estate Schol (Pawtucket)
- East Bay Real Estate Academy, Ltd. (Providence)
- Gold Star Real Estate School, Inc. (Middletown)
- North American Institute for Appraisal & Real Estate Studies (Pawtucket)
- Rhode Island Association of Realtors (Warwick)
You may also click this link for the full list of approved schools and the required course list from the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation.
Note: If you graduated with a bachelor’s degree in real estate from an accredited college or university, the education requirement may be waived.
#2 Contact Pearson VUE to Take the Exam
It is the state policy of Rhode Island to take the exam BEFORE submitting an application for your real estate license.
You may contact them at (800) 274-8922 or simply visit their website here.
Here, you can schedule your real estate exam and look for available testing centers (this test is not easy).
Do you have a concern or clarification? You may contact their customer service or view their FAQs here.
Remember, be EXTRA patient when looking for an available slot. The pandemic has significantly affected the availability of exam slots for the safety of both the candidates and employees.
Although it may take a little bit longer, you may still process your real estate license application.
#3 Submit Your Application to the Rhode Island DBR
Congratulations on passing the real estate exam! You are now one step closer to obtaining your real estate license.
The next step would be registration. Complete the following requirements and submit them to the DBR:
- Original Test Score Report from Pearson VUE (both pages)
- Accomplished Real Estate Salesperson Application form
- Certificate of completion of your pre-licensing education
- Criminal History Record (CHR)
- Tax Payer’s Status Affidavit/Identity Verification
- Certificate of a three-hour course in Lead Poisoning/Lead Hazard Mitigation
- Certificate of Errors and Omissions Insurance
- Certificate of three-hour New Agency Law course*
- A written statement from a Rhode Island real estate broker that attests to the competency, trustworthiness, and suitability of the applicant
- Three property owners as references (required to know the applicant for at least three years and can certify to applicant’s good reputation)
- $140 CHECK payable to “Rhode Island General Treasurer”
- $25 CHECK payable to “Real Estate Recovery Account”
*There’s no need to submit a separate certificate of completion for New Agency Law if it’s already part of your pre-licensing education.
The forms could be found here.
Are There Additional Requirements for Non-Residents?
Non-residents must submit two CHRs: (1) from the law enforcement agency of their home state; (2) from the Rhode Island Department of the Attorney General.
Also, a Certificate of Licensure or a Letter of Good Standing from the home state’s licensing authority and an irrevocable Power of Attorney Form for service process.
#4 Wait for the Issuance of Your Real Estate License
Of course, the DBR will need time to check your application and verify the documents that you have submitted.
Licenses often take between one week and three months to process.
However, we advise you to be patient if it takes longer than that, as the pandemic has significantly slowed the processing of the DBR.
What Are the Best Steps Now That I Have My Real Estate License?
First of all, congratulations on getting your estate license! It’s no easy feat considering that it takes a lot of time and effort.
BUT, having a Rhode Island real estate license DOES NOT mean you can act independently.
The next best step to practice your license is to work under a real estate broker. Remember the written statement from Step #2?
You may ask that same broker to take you under their wing and work under their sponsorship for your first two to three years. [R]
Still got some questions? We’re here to clarify any of your concerns!
How Do I Become a Real Estate Broker?
In Rhode Island, real estate agents are esteemed, but it’s not a secret that brokers have more independence.
The following are the requirements in Rhode Island for a real estate agent to obtain a broker license:
- Evidence of two years of full-time experience as a real estate agent/salesperson, validated by an affirmation letter from the employing broker
- AT LEAST 90 hours of approved real estate classes (in addition to the 45-hour pre-licensing classes)
- Pass the Real Estate Broker exam
- Application fee ($10) for a broker license
How Are Real Estate Licenses Renewed?
The renewal of real estate involves continuing education.
As laws are changing, agents and brokers alike go back to being students every two years.
In Rhode Island, real estate professionals are expected to complete 24 credits, wherein 6 credits must be approved for continuing education.
There is also a renewal fee of $170 for a broker license and $130 for a real estate agent license.
Continuing education is MANDATORY for a license to be renewed.
What’s the Difference Between Real Estate Brokers, Agents, and a Realtor?
In Rhode Island, and pretty much anywhere else in the world, real estate agents have a professional license that enables them to help people buy, sell, and rent real estate.
Agents have to work under a brokerage firm, which is headed by a real estate professional with a broker license.
They have additional training and are allowed to independently manage Rhode Island real estate properties.
Lastly, a realtor is either an agent or a broker who is a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
Just a quick side note. Becoming a member of NAR is important because you will be able to view other listings and properties around Rhode Island.
Apply for Your Rhode Island Real Estate License Now
Becoming a licensed real estate professional in Rhode Island is a big decision that requires time, patience, and dedication.
Rhode Island holds a lot of opportunities for those who want to practice in the industry of real estate.
For a more “fun” real estate article, check out these hilarious real estate quotes.