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FAQ: North Carolina Frequently Ask Questions Real Estate License

Categories > North Carolina
  • About the NC State’s Real Estate Education Requirements
  • Applying for a Real Estate License in NC
  • Disclosing Prior Criminal Activity in North Carolina
  • NC License Qualifications and Requirements
  • NC Real Estate Profession Related Questions
  • NC Reciprocity and Out-of-State Licensees
  • North Carolina Real Estate License Renewal
  • RealEstateU NC Related Questions
  • Scheduling Your NC State Real Estate Licensing Exam
  • Taking the NC State Licensing Exam

North Carolina Frequently Ask Questions Real Estate License

On this page you will find a full list of frequently asked questions about how to get your North Carolina real estate license, the North Carolina real estate broker course, how to prepare for the NC state exam, how to renew your NC real estate license, and general real estate profession questions.

About the NC State’s Real Estate Education Requirements

If I already hold a law degree do I still need the NC 75-hour course?

As an attorney, you may receive a waiver of the required 75-hour pre-license coursework. A request to waive the pre-license education requirement should be made in writing and included with the application for license. In addition, a transcript and copy of your law degree should be included with the application.

Can I waive the education requirements for my NC application?

You may request a waiver of the 75-hour North Carolina pre-licensing course if you can show completion of substantial real estate education equivalent to the pre-licensing course. You will need to provide a transcript showing a baccalaureate or higher degree that meets specific requirements.

How many hours of education are required for a North Carolina license?

You will need to complete 75 hours of pre-licensure coursework before you will be able to submit your license application and be approved to sit for the state license exam. Once your application is complete and you have passed the state license exam, you will be issued an inactive provisional broker license.

How do I receive my NC pre-license course completion certificate?

Approved North Carolina real estate schools will electronically report your successful completion of the 75-hour pre-licensing course automatically to the North Carolina Real Estate Commission to be paired with your online license application.

Can I take the NC pre-license coursework if I’m still in high school?

You may take the 75-hour course, but you must be at least 18 years of age to apply for a North Carolina provisional broker license.

Is the North Carolina pre-license course final exam proctored?

Yes, the 75-hour pre-license course concludes with a closed-book, proctored exam. This is true for online courses as well as in-person classroom learning. You must achieve a passing grade of at least 75%.

How can I take the 75-hour pre-license course?

The 75-hour pre-license course may be completed via in-person classroom, synchronous distance (live online), distance learning or a combination of these. The NC Real Estate Commission has approved a number of providers for administering the required 75-hour pre-license course, including online course providers.

What coursework is required if I want to apply for a license in NC?

According to North Carolina Real Estate Commission requirements, an applicant may qualify for the state’s real estate examination by successfully completing the Commission-approved 75-hour North Carolina broker pre-licensing course.

Do I need a high school diploma to get my North Carolina license?

No, you are not required to have a high school diploma in order to apply for a North Carolina provisional broker license.

Applying for a Real Estate License in NC

If I pass the exam and meet all requirements will I get my NC license?

Successful completion of the state license examination does not guarantee issuance of a provisional broker license. Licenses are only granted to people found to be of good character. Each application that contains a character issue will be reviewed by the Commission and a decision made on a case-by-case basis.

What documents are required for my NC real estate license application?

It is advisable to complete and submit your application online. You can expect to include the following with your provisional broker license application:
- The application.
- Proof of satisfactory completion of pre-licensure education.
- Criminal background report.
- Payment of $100 application fee.

What are errors and omissions insurance?

Errors and omissions insurance, which is often referred to simply as E&O insurance or even professional liability insurance, helps protect you from lawsuits claiming you made an error while providing professional real estate services. If a lawsuit is brought against you, it can help cover court costs or settlements.

What do I do once I have successfully passed the NC state exam?

Once you have passed North Carolina’s license exam and the Commission has deemed you to be of good character, you will be qualified for licensure. You can expect to receive your license certificate in the mail at the address you provided on your application form in up to 10 business days.

Disclosing Prior Criminal Activity in North Carolina

How should I disclose any prior criminal activity to the Commission?

Criminal activity that has occurred at any point during a license applicant’s past should be disclosed when making your real estate broker license application to the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.

How do I know if a past conviction prevents me from getting a license?

If you have a criminal history, you can request a predetermination from the Commission as to whether you will be disqualified from obtaining your real estate license if you were to meet all other requirements. This will keep you from incurring education and exam costs when you do not qualify to be licensed.

What does the NC Real Estate Commission consider to be a conviction?

The North Carolina Real Estate Commission expects all applicants to disclose any conviction of a misdemeanor or felony offense, including military criminal convictions, that were received at any time in their life. This includes serious traffic convictions such as DUIs or reckless driving.

Can I get my NC license if I have a prior conviction?

If your criminal history shows a criminal conviction, including a serious traffic offense or DWI, you are considered to have a character issue that must be reviewed by the Commission. The Commission reviews every application with a character issue and evaluates it on a case-by-case basis.

NC License Qualifications and Requirements

What are the character questions on the NC broker license application?

The three questions are:
1. Have you EVER been convicted of any criminal offense (felony or misdemeanor)
2. Have you EVER been denied a real estate or other professional license or been disciplined by an occupational licensing agency
3. Are there any liens or unpaid judgments now outstanding against you?

Is a character assessment required as part of the application process?

Yes, there is a character assessment as part of the broker license application process. You will need to answer three questions related to criminal offenses (including serious traffic offenses), professional licensure disciplinary actions and liens/unpaid judgments at the time you make your application.

What steps do I need to take to get my NC provisional broker license?

1. Complete your 75-hour pre-license education requirement or qualify to waive the pre-license education requirement.
2. Submit a complete license application.
3. Schedule your exam.
4. Pass the state exam.
5. Receive your license and activate it.

What examinations do I need to take to get my NC license?

You will need to take a final course exam for your 75-hour pre-license required coursework, as well as the North Carolina real estate license exam. The state license exam consists of two distinct sections: a national portion and a state portion.

Are attorneys exempt from the requirements for obtaining an NC license

An attorney may receive a waiver of the required 75-hour pre-license coursework. A request to waive this education requirement should be made in writing and included with the application for license. In addition, a transcript and copy of your law degree must be included with the application for licensure.

Is there a way to speed up the time it takes to get my NC license?

For the quickest service, you should make your application online at the North Carolina Real Estate Commission’s website. Applying via postal mail will cause a delay in review of your application.

What is the cost of obtaining an NC provisional broker license?

Here are the costs to obtain your NC license:
Pre-Licensing Course: 249
License application fee: $100/ attempt (paid to NC Real Estate Commission)
License examination fee: $64/attempt (paid to PSI).
Criminal background check: $30
Total cost: $443

Does NC have any license accommodations for members of the military?

If you are a member of the military, you will need to meet the same education and exam requirements as other applicants.

What could keep me from receiving approval for an NC license?

If you are found to have a character issue including criminal offenses, professional licensure disciplinary action, and liens or unpaid judgments the North Carolina Real Estate Commission will review your application. Character issues are considered on a case by case basis. A decision is usually rendered within 45 days

What is required to apply for a provisional broker license in NC?

In order to apply for a provisional broker license in North Carolina, you must meet the following three requirements. - Be age 18 or older - Be a U.S. citizen, a non-citizen national or a qualified alien under federal law, or have a lawful presence in the U.S. - Have a Social Security number

Can I get my NC license if I have a past arrest or conviction?

As an applicant, you must obtain and submit a criminal record report with your application. In addition, you will be required to answer three character questions when completing your application.

Can I get an NC license if I don’t work for a broker-in-charge?

You can receive a license, but it will be inactive and you will be unable to engage in real estate activities on your own. You will need a broker-in-charge to sign and submit an affiliation form to the Commission before your license can be activated.

Do I need to provide a Social Security number to apply for a license?

Yes, providing your Social Security number is mandatory in making your application. The North Carolina Real Estate Commission is required by law to collect your Social Security number, but the law says it must also protect it from public access or improper disclosure.

Do I need to be an NC resident in order to apply for an NC license?

If you already hold a real estate license from another state, U.S. territory or Canadian jurisdiction, and your current license—such as a real estate salesperson license—is equivalent to North Carolina’s provisional broker license, you can apply for a provisional broker license in North Carolina.

Do I need a high school diploma to get an NC real estate license?

There is not a minimum education requirement to apply for a real estate license. You do not need to have a high school diploma to apply for a real estate broker license in North Carolina.

Is there an age requirement to get an NC provisional broker license?

You must be at least 18 years of age to apply for a North Carolina real estate broker license, although you do not need to have a diploma.

Can I get a real estate salesperson license in North Carolina?

Unlike many states, North Carolina only offers broker licenses. However, there are multiple categories of broker licenses. Most new licensees will start their real estate careers at the entry-level license status of provisional brokers.

NC Real Estate Profession Related Questions

When is a broker license required in North Carolina?

A provisional broker license is required to represent a buyer or seller in a real estate transaction, including listing, selling, purchasing, leasing, lease options and renting, and earn a commission for services rendered. A license enables the licensee to advertise and market real estate properties and their services.

What can I do with my North Carolina provisional broker license?

If you hold a provisional broker license, you may earn a commission or other compensation by representing sellers and buyers in the listing, selling, purchasing, exchange, leasing, renting, or leasing option on any real property, real estate improvement or timeshare.

NC Reciprocity and Out-of-State Licensees

Can I obtain my North Carolina license if I’m not a U.S. citizen?

Yes, applicants may be a non-citizen national or a qualified alien under federal law, or an individual with a lawful presence in the U.S., who is authorized to work in the U.S. in the real estate brokerage field. If you hold a U.S. Permanent Resident Card, also known as a “green card,” then you are a qualified alien.

Does a non-resident applicant need to file an irrevocable consent form

Yes, non-resident applicants should file an irrevocable consent allowing for suits and actions that may be taken against them to occur in the proper court within the state of North Carolina.

Can I get my NC provisional broker license if I live in another state?

Yes, if you are a resident from another state, you may still apply for a North Carolina provisional broker license, as long as you hold a real estate license in your state of residency. However, the firm and principal broker where you hold your license will need to be licensed in North Carolina.

Do I need to get a Salesperson license or broker license in NC?

The equivalent license to a real estate salesperson license in most other states is a provisional broker license in North Carolina. Entry-level real estate licensees are considered provisional brokers.

Do I need to take the NC state exam if I am licensed in another state?

If you hold an active real estate license from another state and have now moved to North Carolina, you may be able to waive the 75-hour pre-license coursework and the national portion of the real estate license exam. You would still need to take the North Carolina state-specific portion of the state license exam.

Does North Carolina offer reciprocity with other states?

As of March 1, 2012, anyone holding a real estate license in another state, may apply for a real estate license in North Carolina regardless of their place of residence, and will not have to take the 75-hour pre-licensing coursework, nor will they need to complete the national section of the state license exam.

North Carolina Real Estate License Renewal

What happens if my license expires while I am on military active duty?

A licensee who is a member of the National Guard or Reserve and gets called to active duty whose license expires during their active duty period is eligible to accommodate for renewing their expired license. Complete the CE Extension Request form on the Commission’s website and submit it ahead of the June 10 deadline.

How do I get my NC real estate license reinstated once it has expired?

If your North Carolina provisional broker license has expired, you can take steps to bring it back into active status. The remedy depends entirely on how long your license has been expired:
6 month or less
More than 6 month and less than 2 years
More than 2 years

Is there a grace period for renewing my NC provisional broker license?

License renewal deadline extensions for acquiring the required continuing education credits are only granted in instances of extreme hardship that prevented a licensee from obtaining continuing education credits in a timely manner.

What is the cost of renewing my NC provisional broker license?

The fee for renewal is $45 and is required on an annual basis. This fee is due prior to the expiration of your current license on June 30 of each year.

How do I renew my provisional broker license in North Carolina?

You can renew your license online at the North Carolina Real Estate Commission website. The renewal fee is $45. The Commission accepts payment via VISA, MasterCard, Discover, American Express or PayPal annually from May 15 to June 30.

What is the education requirement for renewing my license in NC?

There is no additional continuing education requirement to renew your license in the year that you pass the exam and initially receive your license. However, beginning in the second year of licensure, you will need to meet the minimum continuing education requirement of 8 hours between July 1 and June 10 of each year.

How often do I need to renew my NC real estate license?

All NC real estate licenses must be renewed by June 30 each year, regardless of the date of issuance. If you do not renew your license by June 30, it will expire. You will receive a courtesy reminder in May. If you do not get your original license till May or June, you will receive your reminder with your new license.

RealEstateU NC Related Questions

Is the RealEstateU North Carolina pre-license course state approved?

Yes. RealEstateU and the North Carolina pre-license course is fully approved by the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.

Scheduling Your NC State Real Estate Licensing Exam

What information is needed when I schedule my NC real estate exam?

When you schedule your appointment, you will need to provide your name, social security number, phone number, mailing address, the title of the exam, eligibility information, email address, and​ method of payment​.

Can I miss or cancel appointment less than two days prior to my test?

If you miss your scheduled appointment, you may apply directly through the PSI website or by phone at 800-733-9267 to reschedule the missed exam or exam sections. You will need to reschedule within the 180-day eligibility window.

How can I cancel and reschedule my test after making an appointment?

You may reschedule your North Carolina exam appointment at no cost by contacting PSI directly at 800-733-9267 at least two days prior to your scheduled appointment.

Can I get my NC real estate license if I am not a NC resident?

You may take the licensing exam outside of North Carolina. However, you will not be able to schedule it using PSI’s online portal. If you need to schedule your exam at a PSI Assessment Center outside of the North Carolina network, please call PSI Candidate Support Center at 800-733-9267.

How long does it take to register and schedule my NC State exam?

Once you have been provided with approval to move forward with scheduling the state licensing exam, you can schedule it by going to the PSI candidate website and following the instructions by clicking on “Government/State Licensing Agencies”. You can also schedule your exam by calling PSI Services at 800-733-9267.

Where can I take the North Carolina state licensing exam?

If you go online to the PSI candidate website, you’ll find a list of testing centers that administer the North Carolina broker exam. PSI also offers remote online proctoring for the state exam, which is a fast and convenient way to take the state exam.

How do I schedule my state exam for an NC provisional broker license?

You can schedule your exam either online at www.psiexams.com, available 24 hours a day, or by calling 800-733-9267, Monday through Friday, between 7:30 a.m. and 10 p.m., or Saturday and Sunday, between 9 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., ET.
You will need to follow few steps in order to schedule your exam online.

How many questions are on the North Carolina pre-license exam?

The exam is 3.5 hours and it includes 135 questions: 80 are National and 40 are State-based questions. The remaining 15 questions are not scored, they are pretest questions.

Taking the NC State Licensing Exam

If I am a non-resident are there additional steps to schedule my exam?

As an agent licensed in another state, you must be affiliated with a firm and principal broker licensed in NC. When making your license application to gain approval for taking the state exam, you will need to send specific documentation to the North Carolina Real Estate Commission, preferably through its online form.

If I fail my exam will I know what areas I need to focus for a retake?

Yes, you will be provided with a detailed, written analysis of your test results, broken down by section and subsection, which should be useful in preparing to retake the exam.

I failed my NC state licensing exam. What do I do now?

If you fail one or both sections of your exam, you may reschedule your exam and pay the corresponding fees directly through PSI, granted you are within the 180-day examination eligibility period. You will be able to pay the combined fees and will not need to complete a completely new license application.

How long will it take for the testing center to issue my test results?

You will learn your score immediately after you have finished the exam. You will receive separate pass/fail results for each section. If you fail the national section, you will be advised of your results for each of the 11 subsections.

Do I need to take the NC state exam if I’m licensed in another state?

Yes, but you will only need to pass the state portion of the NC state license exam before submitting your application and a certified license history. You will need to complete the post-licensing education requirement, unless you get it successfully waived by demonstrating you have completed equivalent coursework.

How far ahead of time should I arrive for my NC exam appointment?

You should plan to arrive at the test center a minimum of 15 minutes before your scheduled exam time. This will allow time for you to check-in and receive instructions on taking the exam. If you are late for your scheduled exam time, you will not be admitted and will forfeit your exam fee.

May I bring a calculator to my exam for a provisional broker license?

You may bring a battery-operated, silent calculator for use during the exam, but it cannot be programmable and must not have a keyboard containing the alphabet nor paper-tape printing capabilities.

Can I bring a snack or bottle of water to my NC test?

You may not. Eating, drinking and smoking are prohibited in the test center. You may take a break whenever you wish, but you will not be given additional time to make up for time lost.

What items may I take into my NC state licensing exam appointment?

You are prohibited from taking any personal items into the testing center. PSI is not responsible for any personal items, including those put into secure storage. Personal items should be left in or returned to, your vehicle prior to taking the exam.

What are considered acts of misconduct when taking the NC state exam?

If you were to engage in any of the specific conduct during your exam, you could be dismissed from taking the test, and your exam would not be scored or reported. Also, your exam fee would not be refunded.

What security procedures are there during the NC state examination?

PSI has numerous security procedures in place during the examination. All applicants must adhere to specific requirements when taking the exam.

Who do I contact if I have a question about the NC state exam?

For questions or requests for more information about the exam itself, you can refer to the Real Estate Licensing in North Carolina handbook or you can contact PSI directly at 800-733-9267 or online at candidate.psiexams.com.

May I take a pencil and paper into my NC state licensing exam?

You will be provided with a pencil and piece of scratch paper to use by the test center. You must return the paper to the supervisor once you have finished the exam or you will not receive your score report. You will not be allowed to bring any notes, papers or documents into the test center.

How do I pay for the North Carolina state licensing exam?

PSI accepts major credit cards, including VISA, MasterCard, Discover or American Express. You can also pay by cashier’s check or money order made payable to PSI. You will need to pay for your exam at the time you schedule it.

What is the cost of the North Carolina state licensing exam?

The fee for the exam is $64, whether you are taking only the state-specific portion or both portions of the exam. The registration fees are not refundable nor are they transferable. If you need to retake the exam or a portion of the exam, you will need to pay the $64 exam fee and the $100 application fee again.

How far in advance do I need to schedule my NC state licensing exam?

You can schedule your exam session as much as 6 weeks in advance, if you prefer. Your best opportunity for getting an appointment on your preferred date is to contact PSI about 4 to 6 weeks before your preferred testing date.

Who administers the state exam for a NC provisional broker license?

The North Carolina Real Estate Commission has contracted with PSI Examination Services (PSI) to schedule and administer the broker license exam program. PSI offers the state exam through a network of computer examination centers in North Carolina. PSI also offers remote online proctoring for the exam.

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Categories > North Carolina
  • About the NC State’s Real Estate Education Requirements
  • Applying for a Real Estate License in NC
  • Disclosing Prior Criminal Activity in North Carolina
  • NC License Qualifications and Requirements
  • NC Real Estate Profession Related Questions
  • NC Reciprocity and Out-of-State Licensees
  • North Carolina Real Estate License Renewal
  • RealEstateU NC Related Questions
  • Scheduling Your NC State Real Estate Licensing Exam
  • Taking the NC State Licensing Exam

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