If you’d like to become a real estate agent in Arkansas, it helps to understand everything involved before you start the process. Here, we’ll cover the benefits of the profession as well as everything that is required to receive your license.
There are a number of steps in the Arkansas real estate licensing process, so we’ve broken it down to keep things simple. To get your license, you will need to:
Step 1: Complete Pre-License Education
Step 2: Pass the Course Final Exam
Step 3: Complete a Background Check
Step 4: Apply for the Arkansas Real Estate Licensing Exam
Step 5: Pass the Arkansas Real Estate Exam
Step 6: Secure a Sponsoring Broker
Step 7: Submit a Real Estate License Application
Step 8: Complete 18 hours post licensing education within 6 months
Before we move on to the steps to get your license, consider if becoming an Arkansas real estate agent is right for you.
The Benefits of Working as an Arkansas Real Estate Agent
At salary.com, the average salary for a real estate agent in Arkansas is listed as $40,008 to $52,092 per year. This varies depending on your commission percentage, the number of homes you sell, if you have any caps, what your split is with your broker, and the value of the homes sold.
In Arkansas, the average price of a home is $187,071. Real estate agents often make 5% commission on sales, which would be $9,354.
Salary aside, becoming a real estate agent includes these other benefits:
- Flexibility in your schedule
- Unlimited income potential
- Career mobility
- Helping people
- Familiarity with your community and neighborhoods
- Varying environments and tasks
If this sounds like a good fit for you, these are the things you should consider next.
Do You Prequalify?
To prequalify as an Arkansas real estate agent, you need to be at least 18-years old. As long as you are, you can take the next steps towards obtaining your license.
1. Complete Pre-License Education
To qualify as a real estate agent in Arkansas. you need to complete 60 hours of pre-license education. The course can be taken in a live classroom or online, and there are a number of real estate institutes available across Arkansas
The pre-licensing education covers these (and other) topics:
- Licensing laws
- Real estate practice
- Forms of ownership, transfer, and recording of title
- Financing and settlement
2. Pass the course final exam
The final exam for the Arkansas real estate pre-license course is made up of 110 questions. You need to get a score of at least 70% to pass, but there is no limit to the number of attempts you can take.
3. Complete a Background Check
The Arkansas Real Estate commission (AREC) requires that all applicants complete a background check. When you apply for this you need to include:
- A completed application form
- Proof of age (ID, Driver License, Birth Certificate)
- $86.25 application fee (must be a money order or cashier’s check)
- Criminal Background Check Identity Verification Form
- Proof of completion of 60 hours of pre-license education
The AREC will notify you when your application has been processed. If it is approved, this communication will include information regarding how to complete the fingerprint process. Once you receive this, you can contact a certified fingerprinting center to collect your fingerprints. The center will submit your prints electronically to the Arkansas State Police for the background check. For any questions, you can contact the AREC at 501-683-8010.
4. Apply for the Real Estate License Exam
All first-time examination applicants must submit the Application for Real Estate License Examination to the AREC. (This application can be found in this handbook).If the application is complete and all education and experience requirements are met, the applicant will be mailed a Certificate of Examination Eligibility. You must have this certificate before contacting Pearson VUE (an outside agency) to make an exam reservation, and you must present this certificate on the day of the exam.
You can register for the exam at the Pearson VUE website, or you can register by phone at (800) 274-2606. Arkansas has a number of testing centers that you can choose from. There is a list of testing centers here. The exam fee is $75, which needs to be paid when you make your exam reservation.
5. Pass the Arkansas Real Estate Licensing Exam
On the day of the exam, you will need to bring:
- Two (2) forms of photo ID
- The Certificate of Examination Eligibility from AREC
Once you’re in the exam site, you will need to place all electronic devices, bulky clothing, and other personal items in a secure location. You will then sit at a computer to take the test.
The questions are divided into two parts: general and state law. You need a score of 70 to pass each section.
Some of the topics covered in the exam are:
- Real estate practice
- Property ownership
- Leasing and property management
- Transfer of title
- Valuation and market analysis
- Real estate calculations
You will get a pass or fail as soon as the exam is completed. Candidates who pass the exam will receive a score report that includes information on how to apply for the license.
For more information on the exam and licensing, you can see the Pearson VUE candidate handbook here.
6. Secure a Sponsoring Broker
To become a licensed and practicing real estate agent in Arkansas, you need to be associated with a registered brokerage firm or broker. Before submitting your application, you’ll need to have secured this sponsorship. It’s important to choose the right broker, as they’ll play a key role in growing your real estate career.
Consider the following when choosing a broker to work with:
- Their reputation as a broker or brokerage firm
- The types of agents they look for
- If they provide education and training for agents
- If they provide marketing materials and potential leads
- Which systems they use
- The benefits they offer
- What is their commission structure?
- What is the growth potential?
7. Submit a Real Estate License Application
Upon completing and passing your exam at the testing center, they will provide you with instructions on how to submit your application. They will also give you your score report and any other documentation you might need to apply.
You need to file your application within 90 days of passing the licensing exam. With your application you will need to provide the license fee of $50, a recovery fee of $25, and a signed Post-Licensing requirement notice.
Once you’ve completed all of these steps successfully, you will receive your Arkansas Real Estate Agent License. At this point, you might want to consider if you’re interested in becoming a Realtor. Here is what this means:
Real Estate Agent vs Realtor: What’s the difference?
For a real estate agent to become a Realtor, they need to become a member of the National Association of Realtors®. The NAR is an organization for real estate agents and other industry professionals. Members are required to subscribe to standards and a code of ethics set by the association. Membership offers access to market data and transaction management services, and other benefits.
To become a part of this community, these are the steps you need to take:
- Get your state real estate license
- Join your local REALTORS® Association – find one close to you with their “find an association” tool
- Pay the application fee – this varies by association
- Maintain membership dues – to keep your title of REALTOR®, you need to pay an annual fee of $150
8. Complete 18 hours post licensing education within 6 months
Please note that in Arkansas, it is required that all new real estate agents and brokers complete a post-license education course or courses as established by the AREC, within 6 months of initial licensure. This is necessary to maintain an active real estate or broker license.
The post licensing course for new real estate agents involves 18 classroom hours.
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