How To Get Your Washington DC Real Estate License

Written by: Kevelyn Rodriguez

    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’ll still need to take your license exam in person, but the rest of the process can be completed entirely online!

    This article outlines the process to get your Washington DC Real Estate License 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.


    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 Washington DC Real Estate License


    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.

    Recommended Course

    For real estate license exam courses and study tools, StateRequirement recommends: Real Estate Express

    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!


    Washington DC Real Estate License FAQ


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

    All Washington DC fees: $316.50

    Real Estate Pre-Licensing Education (Estimated): $600-$800

    The total estimated cost to get a Washington DC Real Estate license is $900-$1,100.


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

    The two steps that take the most time when getting your license are pre-license education and test preparation. The average amount of time that people take from start to finish is generally 3-6 months.

    If you dedicate a full-time schedule to this process and study hard, you could possibly complete this process in 2 months. We wouldn’t recommend trying to go any faster than this. Take your time to study and prepare yourself for the exam.


    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, 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?

    Check out StateRequirement Jobs to find open real estate jobs in your area!

    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



    Information on this page has been gathered by a multitude of sources and was most recently updated in December 2020.

    Any Information on this site is not guaranteed or warranted to be correct, accurate, or up to date. StateRequirement and its members and affiliates are not responsible for any losses, monetary or otherwise. StateRequirement is not affiliated with any state, government, or licensing body. For more information, please contact your state's authority on insurance.

    When readers purchase services discussed on our site, we often earn affiliate commissions that support our work. Learn More