In this article, you’ll learn the most important steps you will need to take to meet the Alabama real estate license requirements.
We will be covering Alabama real estate pre-licensing requirements, the post-licensing requirements for active real estate agents, and the Alabama real estate continuing education requirements.
Also, you need to complete the 60-hour pre-licensing education requirement with an approved school and pass the state and national segments of the Alabama licensing exam.
Table of Contents: Alabama Real Estate License Requirements
Did you know that Alabama offers full reciprocity with all 50 states? The ability to offer full reciprocity implies that those that have already become licensed agents in other states can also pursue licensure by completing an extra 6 hours of pre-licensing education, background check, and passing the state section of the real estate exam.
Another amazing fact about pursuing a real estate license in Alabama is that it is a cooperative state in terms of portability.
This essentially implies that out-of-state real estate agents or brokers will be allowed to physically enter the state of Alabama to conduct their real estate business activities. However, for out-of-state agents to handle their real estate transactions, they are required to have a co-brokerage agreement with a licensee of Alabama.
What Are The Alabama Real Estate License Prerequisites?
To earn your real estate license in Alabama, you must be a minimum of 19 years old. In addition to being at least 19 years of age, you need to be a US citizen or a permanent resident alien and show proof of high school graduation or equivalent.
The prerequisite requirements above are the same for most states but not all. For example, some states such as Alaska also require you to be 19+ years old to get your real estate license. However, some states like California will allow you to apply for a license with an ITIN number. Do not use the social security number as is customary.
Generally, the process to become a real estate agent is similar in most states. However, each state has a set of unique steps that must be adhered to.
Alabama Real Estate License Requirements:
1). Complete an Alabama Real Estate Pre-Licensing Course
First, you must complete 60 hours of approved pre-license real estate education. You can select the course that’s suitable from the different options found on the Alabama Salesperson Licensing Course page.
Many people prefer to do their pre-license education courses online. We suggest the Alabama Real Estate Pre-Licensing Course from The CE Shop or the Alabama course through Colibri Real Estate.
If you are looking for an Alabama online real estate school, start by taking a look at our CE Shop review and Colibri Real Estate review. These are going to be the two most popular online pre-licensing options for Alabama.
McKissock Learning is another option although they seem to be more pricey.
Thankfully the majority of online courses are self-paced and come with study materials like real estate practice exams and flashcards.
Some online courses also come with a “guarantee” that you will effectively ace the exam on your first attempt by the time you complete their course. These benefits are all dependent on the course provider and the package you choose. It is therefore very essential to select the courses that will address your needs effectively.
One thing every aspiring sales agent has to remember is that the goals of these courses aren’t solely to check some boxes and satisfy a particular requirement, but to help the individuals pass their exam, thus improving the chances they become expert agents.
Alabama is among the very few states that require a proctor to supervise the final pre-license exam. The state exam is not the same as this. This test, which is supplied by your pre-license education provider, verifies that you have finished and retained the content from your pre-license education course.
This exam is closed-book and closed-note, the same as the state exam.
A basic-function calculator and scratch paper are permitted; however, cell phones or outside internet access are not allowed.
You usually have the chance to take this test from the comfort of your home. However, you need to remember that there must be a proctor overseeing you when doing this test at your home.
When purchasing your preferred Alabama real estate pre-license course, check to see if a proctor comes with your education package.
2). Apply For Your Alabama Real Estate License Examination
After completing your required 60 hours of education, you will have six months to pass the state exam, or you will have to retake the course all over again. To get more elaborate information about how to schedule your exam, you can simply visit the exam provider’s website: psiexams.com.
After you’ve completed your pre-licensing coursework and passed the course exam, you’ll be eligible to apply for a license. You have essentially put yourself in a good position to tackle the Alabama Real Estate Exam.
The fee required to take the exam is $77 per attempt. The Alabama Real Estate Exam comprises 140 questions that include 100 for the National section and 40 for the State section. You’ll have 210 minutes to finish the exam to your satisfaction. The National component of the Alabama Real Estate Salesperson Exam has a passing score of 70/100, while the State section has a passing score of 28/40.
If you pass the examination, you will a score report will be issued to you. Furthermore, you will be provided guidelines to assist you in applying for a license.
If you do not get a passing mark for the course, your score report will include diagnostic scoring information as well as reapplication instructions to assist you in reapplying.
How Hard is the Alabama Real Estate Exam?
The Alabama Real Estate Salesperson Exam has a 70 percent pass rate. The test is usually set to be intentionally difficult.
The learners who pay attention and put a lot of effort into their Alabama pre-licensing course put themselves in good positions to ace the Alabama Real Estate Exam on their first attempt.
Having said that, you can significantly decrease the anxiety you may have about passing the Alabama exam by taking a real estate exam prep course.
Take a look at our PrepAgent reviews and Exam Scholar reviews to learn more about these two popular Alabama exam prep courses. Compucram is a third Alabama real estate exam prep option although we prefer the latter two options.
You can easily register to take your exam on the PSI Alabama Real Estate page. The page provides you with some other valuable resources as well including the Candidate Handbook and Content Outline.
3). Pick an Alabama Real Estate Brokerage to Work for
To hold an active Alabama real estate license, you will be required to find a sponsoring brokerage that you can affiliate with your license. There is an in-depth guide that helps potential real estate agents to choose the best real estate company to work for. There are many successful brokerages in Alabama that aspiring real estate agents can choose from.
Some of the best Alabama brokerage firms include The Fred Smith Group, Pugh Group, Josh Vernon Group, and the Global Homes Group Inc. Pick any one of these established Alabama brokerage firms and activate your license fast!
4). Get Your Fingerprinting and Background Check
After you’ve passed your exam, you’ll need to finish your fingerprints and a background check. Before becoming a licensed real estate agent in Alabama, the Alabama Real Estate Commission requires all applicants to undergo a background check.
Follow the instructions for fingerprint scanning and processing on the Gemalto Alabama platform to begin fingerprinting. Only fingerprints that have been processed by Gemalto can be used by the Alabama Real Estate Commission.
If you can’t get your fingerprinting done in person, you can also request a fingerprint card through the Alabama Real Estate Commission.
The Alabama Real Estate Commission will not accept fingerprints completed for any reason other than applying for a real estate license.
On average, the fee to complete your Alabama fingerprinting checking and confirmation is $48.25.
The Alabama Real Estate Commission is in charge of reviewing any findings in your background report to ensure your eligibility. Officials from the Alabama Real Estate Commission may contact you during this process to request further information or paperwork to resolve any issues.
For those with past criminal offenses or judgments against them, the chances they may not pass the eligibility test are high.
Before applying for a real estate license in Alabama, they should fill out and submit an Application for Determination of Licensing Eligibility form to increase their chances of being approved.
The process of license issuance will not proceed until the Alabama Real Estate Commission has received and reviewed the criminal history record information of an applicant (CHRI) along with the license application. The criminal record information is normally sent immediately from Gemalto to the Alabama Real Estate Commission and is only available for 30 days. Gemalto is a business that is solely responsible for fingerprint processing.
It is recommended that the applicants submit this form either through mail or in person to the Real Estate Commission on the same day they go to a fingerprinting site to be scanned.
5). Apply for Your Alabama State Real Estate License
After you pass the exam, the next step is applying for the Alabama State License. Applicants need to remember that this process has to be done within 90 days of their exam date. Failure to adhere to this will make their exam score null and void.
Applications are made on the Alabama Real Estate Commission website. Do not forget to complete a Criminal History Release Form, then submit this together with your application. The Criminal History Release Form is located on the Alabama Real Estate Commission’s website.
Additionally, you will be required to complete a 30-hour post-license training course within the first 12 months of getting the Alabama State License to qualify to be issued a permanent license.
Within 90 days of the applicant’s examination date, the completed applications, any required extra materials, and fees must be completed and delivered to the Alabama Real Estate Commission.
A total of $210 is required for this application, which includes a $150 license fee, a $30 research and education fee, and a $30 recovery fund fee.
For the license processing process to begin, send the completed application and any accompanying paperwork to the Alabama Real Estate Commission’s Licensing Division at 1201 Carmichael Way, Montgomery, AL 36106.
6). Application Review
Once an applicant has passed their exam, the only remaining step is to wait patiently for their background report to return as a pass. This process does not usually take more than ten business days.
Here, the applicant is issued a copy of their license. They will need to mail it to their sponsor broker’s office for it to effectively be activated to enable them to use it for their real estate activities and transactions.
Alabama Real Estate Post-Licensing Education Requirements
Within the first 12 months of licensure, every applicant is required to complete a 30-hour post-licensing course. They must have a temporary ID number. The temporary ID number is usually needed to be provided by the applicant at the beginning of their post-licensing course.
One important fact to remember is that an applicant’s pre-license education package may come with the post-license courses in the package. An applicant needs to confirm this before buying another course.
Alabama Real Estate License FAQs
How Much Will It Cost to Get a Real Estate License in Alabama?
All Alabama fees: $340
Real Estate Pre-Licensing Education (Estimated): $299-$565
The total estimated cost of obtaining an Alabama Real Estate license is $640-$905.
How Long Will It Take to Get an Alabama Real Estate License?
The pre-license education and test preparation normally take the most time. The average duration that people take is generally about 3-6 months. Dedicating a full-time schedule to this process can allow you to complete the process in less than 2 months.
How to Obtain a Commercial Real Estate License in Alabama?
To sell commercial real estate in Alabama, you must first obtain a standard Salesperson or Broker license. There is no specific “commercial real estate license” that you must obtain.
If you plan on taking a career selling a specific type of commercial real estate, you can choose a broker that handles the types of transactions that you want to be a part of.
Getting Your Real Estate License in Alabama – Final Thoughts
If you’re hankering for schedule flexibility, unlimited earning potential, and autonomy in your career, then getting an Alabama real estate license could be right up your alley.
With 60 hours of Alabama Real Estate Commission-approved (AREC) pre-licensing education, a background check, application, and passing exam score, you will be on your way to gaining your temporary real estate license in Alabama.
About The Author: This article was researched and published by Tim Schroeder. As a husband and wife real estate team residing in Florida, Tim Schroeder brings deep expertise with over 8 years of experience as a licensed real estate agent.
Deb and Tim Schroeder have earned numerous real estate industry awards and recognitions. They have been recognized by Orlando Magazine as a “Top 100 Real Estate Professional” as well as earned Top Producer Designations with the Orlando Realtor Association for 6 years straight.