Plaintiff's Attorneys

How to Become a Licensed Real Estate Agent & Broker in New York

What's the Difference Between a Real Estate Agent and a Real Estate Broker?

     There are a few key differences between a real estate agent and a real estate broker that are worth examining before looking at the steps to become them. Both licensed real estate agents and real estate brokers represent sellers and/or buyers of real property and land in negotiations to sell, buy, and manage real estate transactions. (homes, buildings, apartments, etc.). However, a real estate agent must work under a licensed broker in order to represent clients, while real estate brokers can work independently. 

5 Steps to Become a Real Estate Broker

Step 1: Fulfill the Age, Background, Education and Citizenship Requirements

  • You must be a U.S. citizen or lawfully admitted person 
  • You must be 18 years of age 
  • Have no prior felonies or misdemeanors (with some exceptions) 
  • You must have a high school diploma or an equivalent 

Step 2: Complete the Required Education

Step 3: Find a Sponsoring Broker

  • To obtain your license, you must be sponsored by a New York State licensed real estate broker 

Step 4: Take the NY Real Estate Salesperson Licensing Exam

  • You must take the exam ($15 fee to take it) and pass with a 70% score or higher
  • Don’t forget to bring a government photo-ID to the exam

Step 5: Apply for Your License

Upon passing the NY Real Estate exam, fill out the online application and pay the required two year license fee to get your license.

How to Become a Real Estate Broker

     To obtain your real estate broker license, you must have completed the following: 

    • Experience Requirement
      • two years of experience as a licensed real estate agent/salesperson OR 
      • at least three years of experience in the general field of real estate or both
    • Educational Requirement
      • must have completed the 75 hour salesperson course + 
      • you must complete the additional 45-hour real estate broker course
    • Examination Requirement
      • you must have passed the qualifying examination

     Note, if you’re an attorney admitted to practice in New York State, you are exempt from the educational, experience and examination requirements. All you have to do is submit a completed application and fee. 

                       Here’s a link to the New York real estate broker application: NYS Real Estate Broker Application

written and updated by Michael Jasper, Esq. 

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