Experience Requirements for the Broker Examination

A minimum of two years full-time licensed salesperson experience within the last five years or the equivalent is required. Following are acceptable methods of documenting the experience requirement for the broker examination.

Verification of Licensed Sales Experience

The fact that you have held a salesperson license for two years does not necessarily qualify you for a broker license. You must document employment as a licensed salesperson actively engaged in the business on a full-time basis (or part-time for the equivalent of two years full-time) in the form of certifications from your responsible broker or former responsible broker(s). These certifications must be made using the Employment Verification (RE 226) Denotes a PDF document, which is included in the broker examination application package and is available on the DRE Web site. Letters of recommendation will not suffice. Additionally, the law requires that this experience must have been gained sometime during the five years immediately preceding the date of your broker examination application.

The License Status Check feature of the DRE Web site may be used to find your current and prior responsible broker's address of record.

If it is impossible to obtain verification of employment from a former responsible broker, you must still complete the Employment Verification (RE 226) Denotes a PDF document in full and indicate the reason why you could not obtain the responsible broker's signature (e.g., deceased, litigation, etc.) in the space labeled "Signature of Certifying Broker." In addition, you must attach two Employment Certification (RE 228) Denotes a PDF document forms from persons who work in a related professional capacity and who are in a position to attest to your experience and activity with that responsible broker. One Employment Verification (RE 226) form and two Employment Certification (RE 228) forms are required for each separate responsible broker when the applicant is unable to obtain the broker's verification.

When submitting the Employment Verification (RE 226) form and the Employment Certification (RE 228) forms, it is important that you provide sufficient detail to enable the Bureau to perform a comprehensive evaluation. The Department may conduct further inquiry when evaluating experience, including requesting additional information from the applicant, the responsible broker, or the certifiers.

Licensed Experience Defined

  1. Full-time salesperson activity means at least 40 hours per week devoted to activities that require a real estate license. No additional credit will be given for more than 40 hours of activity.

  2. Part-time activity as a real estate salesperson will be given credit on a prorated basis. For example, 20 hours of activity per week would be given credit as half time employment, and four years of such employment would be required to qualify for a broker license. No credit is given for less than 10 hours of activity per week.

  3. Salespersons who claim full-time employment for 40 hours per week, but who are employed as full-time employees in another industry, will not, ordinarily, be credited in excess of 20 hours per week maximum (or half-time employment in the real estate business).

  4. Salespersons who claim low or no transaction volume may require additional explanations be provided to the Department, including an explanation from the responsible broker as to the reason(s) for the low or no volume.

All attachments must be signed by the applicant and the certifiers.

Education in Lieu of Experience

Major or Minor in Real Estate

An applicant with a degree from an accredited four year college or university which included a major or minor in real estate may be exempt from the two-year salesperson experience requirement. This may be verified by submitting a copy of the transcript showing the degree earned. Degrees and certificates earned from two year institutions do not qualify.

Courses completed or degrees earned through foreign institutions of higher learning must be evaluated by a foreign credentials evaluation service approved by DRE. See Examination Applicant Foreign Education Information (RE 223) Denotes a PDF document for further information.

Experience Requirements

Members of the California State Bar are statutorily exempt from the college-level course requirements. Evidence of admission to practice Law in California must be furnished, such as a photocopy of both sides of a California State Bar membership card. However, members of the California State Bar would still need to demonstrate that they have satisfied the two years full-time licensed salesperson experience requirement or have at least two years real estate related experience while practicing law in California. Members of the State Bar of California using equivalent experience should submit a RE 227 Equivalent Experience Verification Denotes a PDF document form outlying this experience along with their broker exam or broker exam/license combination application.

Equivalent Activities in Lieu of Experience

General Information

A claim of equivalent experience, in lieu of the two years of sales experience required for the broker examination, may be based on any combination of salesperson experience and equivalent experience, which, considered as a whole, would satisfy the intent of the law.

An applicant who has not been active as a licensed real estate salesperson may be eligible for the broker examination, provided Equivalent Experience Verification (RE 227) Denotes a PDF document form(s) showing real estate-related experience are submitted. The Equivalent Experience Verification form(s) must be completed in full and must have two verifying signatures on each form.

When submitting the Equivalent Experience Verification (RE 227) form(s), it is important that you provide sufficient detailed descriptions of your activities to enable the Department to perform an evaluation. The Department may conduct further inquiry when evaluating equivalent experience, including requesting additional information from the applicant, the employer, or the certifiers.

Regardless of the experience, the eight college-level courses required for a broker's license must be completed and cannot be waived based on the equivalent experience.

Acceptable Kinds of Equivalent Experience

An applicant may qualify with two years full-time experience, in any of the following areas:

  1. Experience as an escrow or title officer or as a loan officer in a capacity directly related to the financing or conveying of real property.

  2. Experience as a subdivider, or speculative builder, during which time the applicant performed comprehensive duties relating to the purchase, finance, development, and sale or lease of real property. General contracting experience does not satisfy the intent of the law.

  3. Experience as a real property appraiser.

  4. Experience as a licensed real estate professional in another state or country.

The above-referenced patterns are designed to assist the applicant in understanding the general types of equivalent experience which can be used to qualify for the broker examination. Other types of real estate-related experience will be considered, provided that it satisfies the intent of the law. It should be noted, however, that claims for equivalency by unlicensed persons for activities which require a real estate license will not be considered. Information on the types of unlicensed activity that would not qualify towards equivalent experience is available here.

Active military and veteran applicants can apply their military experience and training, as it relates to real estate-related activities and provided that it satisfies the intent of the law, towards licensure requirements.

NOTE: Care in preparing the claim of qualification and presentation of adequate supporting documents including letters, certifications, corporation information, tax forms and proof of real property ownership - will facilitate the review of an application. Do not have verifiers send individual letters separate from your application submissions. Be accurate as to employment and transaction dates, etc., as incompleteness or inaccuracies will result in delays and additional correspondence. All attachments must be signed by the applicant and the certifiers.


DRE Evaluation of Experience

All qualification requirements must be met before you can be scheduled for the broker examination. DRE evaluation of claimed experience or education cannot be conducted with applicants in person at any office of the Department or on the telephone.

If you wish an evaluation of your previous college courses, degree or experience you must submit a completed application and fee as described in the next section.

How to Apply for the Broker Examination

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