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NC Real Estate License in 8 Weeks

Here’s how you can get your North Carolina real estate license swiftly and efficiently.

When you choose to start a new career as a real estate agent in North Carolina, you don’t want to waste any time obtaining your license. The primary goal in getting your real estate license is to schedule and pass the state exam. After passing the state exam, you will be able to activate your license with a sponsoring broker and start earning commissions.


Candidates typically take from 12 to 24 weeks to fulfill the real estate licensing requirements, but it can be accomplished much faster. If you plan diligently, you can get the entire process done in less than 8 weeks.

Use these six tips to speed up the process of getting your license:

Tip 1: Don’t try to memorize the real estate license course.

There is too much content for this approach. Move at a steady pace through the chapters and don’t be discouraged if it feels that you are not retaining all the content. You will have plenty of opportunities to challenge your memory with quizzes, flashcards and, most importantly, the end-of-course practice exam. Cognitive science shows that spacing repetitions boosts your ability to retain knowledge.

Tip 2: Pass the end-of-course exam the first time.

You typically have 2 attempts to pass the pre-licensing end-of-course exam. If you don't pass, you will have re-enroll and restart the whole course. Practice tests provided before the end-of-course exam will help you retain the course content without relying on the creation of your own study materials. Plus, accessing these materials before the exam allows you to test your knowledge and focus your review time in areas where you need it most. Retake the practice exams as many times as necessary until you get at least 85% to maximize your chance of passing the pre-license course final exam – the first time.

Tip 3: Process your background check as soon as you complete your course.

Obtain your criminal record report the moment you successfully pass your pre-licensing course. This process was made very simple by the NCREC so your criminal report can be obtained online from Get your background check requirement done early so you can check off one of the four steps to licensure. The results will be held by the North Carolina Real Estate Commission (NCREC), waiting to be matched with your real estate license application.

Tip 4: Submit your application promptly.

To expedite the approval process, you should submit your real estate application online within 3 days of completing the pre-licensing course. The NCREC will start processing your application, and match your information with your background check. Submitting your application earlier also allows you more time to cure any issues with your application.

Tip 5: Take practice exams.

As you wait for your application approval, take practice tests to prepare for the state exam. This is the most important step you can take to prepare to pass the state exam. Some schools proudly advertise over 1,000 practice questions and answers, which can be too time consuming and unproductive. It is better to focus on about 300 to 400 questions that really reflect the style of actual state exam questions. These simulations are designed to help familiarize you with the content and types of questions on the exam, and then provide feedback on your areas of strength and weakness. Repeat these practices exams until you get 85% and you can be confident that you are ready for the North Carolina real estate exam.

Tip 6: Don’t wait to schedule your state exam.

Avoid postponing the scheduling of your state exam until you feel 200% sure that you will pass the first time. The worst-case scenario if you fail the first time is that you will need to practice a bit more and retake it. The state exam can be rescheduled immediately for $56, an expense easily recovered with your first commission. There is no limit in terms of how many times you can retake the state exam during the 180-day eligibility period.

If you diligently follow these simple tips, you will be set up on the fast track to obtaining your real estate license in North Carolina within 8 weeks.


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