How to Get Your Washington D.C. Real Estate License

Written by: Kevelyn Rodriguez

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How to Get Your Washington D.C. Real Estate License

Getting your Washington DC Real Estate License is the first step to becoming a real estate agent in Washington DC. Nowadays, this process can be done almost entirely online. You will still need to take your Washington DC 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 Washington DC 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 Washington DC

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

Washington DC Real Estate License Requirements

The requirements to become a real estate agent in Washington DC are:

  • Be a citizen of the United States or a lawfully admitted alien
  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Must be a high school graduate or the holder of a high school equivalency certificate (GED)
  • Must not have had a real estate application denied within the last year, other than failure to pass the required examination
  • Must not have had a real estate license suspended or revoked in D.C. or elsewhere

How to Get Your Real Estate License in Washington DC

Step 1. Real Estate Pre-Licensing Course

Washington, D.C. requires that real estate sales agents complete 60 hours of pre-license coursework before sitting for their exam.

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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Washington DC does 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. Washington DC Real Estate License Exam

After you’ve completed your pre-license education, it’s now time to take the Washington, D.C. Real Estate Exam.

The fee to take the exam is $61.50 per attempt.

The Washington, D.C. Real Estate Exam consists of 110 questions; 80 for the National section and 30 for the State section.

You will have 210 minutes (4 hours) to complete the entire exam. The National section time is 120 minutes (2 hours), and the State section time is 90 minutes (1.5 hours).

A passing score for Washington, D.C. Real Estate Salesperson Exam is 60/80 on the National section and 23/30 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 Washington DC Real Estate Exam

The passing rate for the Washington DC Real Estate Salesperson Exam is 75%. 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 Washington DC 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 3. Real Estate License Application

The last step to getting your real estate license in Washington, D.C. is to complete your license application.

You can fill out your application online using Washington DC’s Online system.

The fee to apply for your license is $255. This amount already includes the $60 fee for the Real Estate Guaranty and Education Fund.

A 2×2 passport-style photo (professional headshots are acceptable) is also required during the application. You need to make sure that you already have a D.C. licensed sponsoring broker as well.

Step 4. Application Review

Once you’ve completed the application, 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 DCREC with a license document. If you have any questions at this point, you should contact DCREC at (866) 270-9817 or


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

DCOPLA – District of Columbia Occupational and Professional Licensing Administration

Mailing Address: 

Washington DC Real Estate Commission
1100 4th Street, SW
Washington DC 20024

Phone: (866) 270-9817



Washington DC Real Estate License FAQ

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

In Washington DC, obtaining a real estate license involves various fees, including a total of $316.50 for Washington DC fees and an estimated cost of $600-$800 for pre-licensing education. Therefore, the total estimated cost to acquire a real estate license in Washington DC falls within the range of $900-$1,100.

How Long Does it Take to Get a Washington DC Real Estate License?

To become licensed real estate agents in Washington DC, the process usually spans three to six months, including pre-license education and dedicated preparation for the licensing exam. If you study full-time, this timeframe can be reduced to about two months. Take time to prepare for the exam to ensure a solid foundation for a successful real estate career.

How to Get a Washington DC Commercial Real Estate License?

To sell commercial real estate in Washington DC, a standard Salesperson 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, work with a licensed real estate broker that handles commercial real estate business.

Are There any Real Estate Jobs Open Around Me?

If you’re looking for a rewarding career in real estate, you might be interested in checking out StateRequirement Jobs, which helps you find open real estate jobs in the DC area. Whether you are a licensed agent, a broker, an appraiser, or a property manager, you can browse through hundreds of listings and apply online.

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