How to Get Your Ohio Real Estate License

Written by: Kevelyn Rodriguez

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How to Get Your Ohio Real Estate License

Getting your Ohio Real Estate License is the first step to becoming a real estate agent in Ohio. Nowadays, this process can be done almost entirely online. You will still need to take your Ohio real estate license exam in person, but the rest of the process can be completed entirely online!

This article outlines how to become a real estate agent in Ohio in an easy to understand, step-by-step manner. You’ll learn how much it will cost, how long it will take, what is on the exam, and much more.

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How to Become a Real Estate Agent in Ohio

Becoming a real estate agent in Ohio is as simple as getting your license, finding a broker sponsor, and getting to work selling real estate! As long as you fulfill the below requirements, you are already on your way to your goal.

Ohio Real Estate License Requirements

The requirements to become a real estate agent in Ohio are:

  • Be a citizen of the United States or a lawfully admitted alien
  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Hold a high school diploma or its equivalent
  • Be honest, truthful, and of good reputation
  • Not have been convicted of a felony or crime of moral turpitude
  • Not have violated any civil rights laws regarding real estate within the last two years

How to Get Your Real Estate License in Ohio

Step 1. Real Estate Pre-Licensing Course

Ohio requires that real estate sales agents complete 120 hours of pre-license coursework. This coursework will consist of four classes.

These four required classes are:

  • 40 hours of Real Estate Principles and Practices
  • 40 hours Ohio Real Estate Law, including instruction in Civil Rights, Housing Discrimination and Desegregation Problems
  • 20 hours of Real Estate Appraisal
  • 20 hours of Real Estate Finance

Most people choose to take their pre-license education course online. The majority of online courses are self-paced and include study materials like real estate practice exams and flashcards. Some also come with a “guarantee” that you will pass the exam on your first attempt if you complete their course. These benefits are all dependent on the education provider and package you choose, so be sure to get the course that best suits your needs.

Remember that the point of these courses isn’t just to check a box and complete a requirement, but rather to prepare you to pass your exam and become a better agent.

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For Ohio real estate license exam courses and study tools, StateRequirement recommends:

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Ohio does not require the final pre-license exam to be supervised by a proctor. This is not the same as the state exam. This test is provided by your pre-license education company and is an indication that you have completed and retained the information from your pre-license education course.

Similar to the state exam, this test is closed-book and closed-note. You are allowed a basic-function calculator and scratch paper, but no cell phones or outside internet access.

Step 2. Real Estate License Application

Before you qualify to sit for the real estate license exam, you must complete the Salesperson License Examination Application. This can be obtained from your pre-licensing school. You must be associated with – and sponsored by – a current and active Ohio broker.

The fee for this application is $81.

You will need to mail the completed Salesperson Examination Application with the required documents and the $81 non-refundable check or money order – made payable to the Ohio Division of Real Estate – to the following address:

Ohio Department of Commerce
Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing
77 South High Street, 20th floor
Columbus, OH 43215

Once the Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing processes a complete application, the applicant’s information is sent to the testing vendor. The testing vendor will process the information and send the applicant a Candidate Information Bulletin with instructions on scheduling the exams.

Step 3. Fingerprinting and Background Check

After submitting your application, the next step is to complete your fingerprinting and background check. The Ohio Real Estate Commission requires all applicants to have a background check performed before they can become a licensed real estate agent in Ohio.

To begin this process, the applicant must contact and arrange with a Webcheck user to have fingerprints taken and submitted to the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation (BCI&I) using the Webcheck system.

Applicants should take their government-issued photo identification with them to the Webcheck location. The applicant should confirm the Webcheck user can submit both state and FBI fingerprints to BCI&I.

An applicant must have fingerprints taken by the Webcheck® user and approved by the BCI&I within ten days after the date of filing an application. Applicants should not have fingerprints taken before filing an application with the Division of Real Estate.

The average cost to complete your fingerprinting services ranges from $60 to $80 depending on the chosen provider and will need to be paid at the time fingerprints are taken.

An applicant must instruct the Webcheck user to use the following reason codes:

BCI&I Reason Code: 4735 05 and/or 121 08 & FBI Reason Code: 121 08. BCI&I must also send the results (state and FBI criminal records check) to the Division at this address:  

Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing
77 S High St., 20th Fl. Columbus, OH 43215-6133 

Completing and turning in your fingerprints will begin the background check process. The Ohio Division of Real Estate will review any findings in your background report to ensure your eligibility. During this process, they may reach out to you to provide additional information or documentation to clear up any findings.

For those who have criminal offenses or judgments against them, there’s a possibility that you may not be eligible for a real estate license in Ohio. If this is the case, you should submit a complete written explanation.

Note

If you aren’t sure whether you are eligible for a real estate license based on your history, check out our article on Real Estate License Eligibility.

Step 4. Ohio Real Estate License Exam

After you’ve been granted your exam eligibility, it’s now time to take the Ohio Real Estate Exam.

The fee to take the exam is $61 per attempt.

The Ohio Real Estate Exam consists of 120 questions; 80 for the National section and 40 for the State section.

You will have 180 minutes (3 hours) to complete the entire exam. The National section time is 120 minutes (2 hours), and the State section time is 60 minutes (1 hour)A passing score for the Ohio Real Estate Salesperson Exam is 56/80 on the National section and 28/40 on the State section.

Immediately after completing your exam, you will receive a scoring document that states whether you passed or failed. If it is marked “Fail,” then you will see a breakdown of your score in the different areas of the exam. If you decide to retake the exam, use this as a guide for your studies.

How Hard is the Ohio Real Estate Exam

The passing rate for the Ohio Real Estate Salesperson Exam is 70%. This test is purposefully difficult, but not impossible. Be sure to pay attention during your pre-license course and take studying seriously. If you put the proper effort forth, we know that you can pass on your first attempt!

You can register to take your exam on the PSI Ohio Real Estate page. On this page, you will find some other helpful resources as well, including the Candidate Handbook and Content Outline.

Before taking the exam, check out StateRequirement’s guide on How to Pass the Real Estate Exam. This in-depth guide works as a great partner to your pre-license course to prepare you to pass on your first attempt!

Step 5. Application Review

Once you’ve passed your exam, you will only need to wait for your license to be issued. In most cases, this process should take between 5-10 business days. After this, you should receive an email from ODRL with a license document. If you have any questions at this point, you should contact TREC by phone at (614) 466-4100 or by email at webreal@com.state.oh.us.

Congratulations! 

Be sure to take some time to celebrate your accomplishment. You’ve put in a lot of work and effort and deserve a celebration!

Ohio Post-Licensing Education

In your first year of licensure, you will be required to complete post-licensing education courses. The required post-licensing hours are 20 and are very similar to the pre-license education that you took before your exam.

Note

There’s a chance that your pre-license education package came with the post-license courses in the package, so be sure you check before you buy another course.

Check out StateRequirement’s recommended post-license course provider for access to these courses.

ODC – Ohio Department of Commerce

Mailing Address: 

Ohio Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing
77 South High Street, 20th Floor,
Columbus, OH 43215-6133

Phone: (614) 466-4100

Fax: (614) 644-0584

Email: webreal@com.state.oh.us

Website: https://www.com.ohio.gov/real/Licensing.aspx

Ohio Real Estate License FAQ

How Much Does it Cost to Get a Real Estate License in Ohio?

Aspiring Ohio real estate agents should budget $830-$1030 for their license, including all Ohio fees of $230 and an estimated $600-$800 for real estate pre-licensing education. This investment is essential for those ready to embark on a career in Ohio’s real estate market.

How Long Does it Take to Get an Ohio Real Estate License?

Getting an Ohio real estate salesperson license usually spans three to six months, which is influenced by your commitment and speed of learning. However, with focused and intensive study, it’s possible to fast-track this process of completing the required approved real estate education in just two months. Make sure to take your time to study and prepare for the exam.

How to Get an Ohio Commercial Real Estate License?

To sell commercial real estate in Ohio, a standard Provisional Broker or Broker license is all that you need. There is no specific “commercial real estate license”. If you wish to take on a career selling specifically commercial real estate, choose a broker that handles the types of deals that you want to be a part of.

Are There any Real Estate Jobs Open Around Me?

For those pursuing a real estate career in Ohio, especially if you’re an aspiring Ohio real estate agent, StateRequirement Jobs is an excellent resource. It not only lists current job openings but also provides information on potential real estate agent salary and connects you with a sponsoring broker in your area, thus helping you on your next career move.

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