The License


How to get your Real Estate License in BC

About us is an online tutorial program that helps you study for, and pass, the BC Real Estate Exam and become a licensed real estate agent. We'll teach you all the answers, both right and wrong, from your UBC Real Estate Exam Study Guide. It's a method preferred by students, and a better way to prepare you for success!

Part of a series of articles to help you understand if real estate is the right career for you.

In less than one year, you can become a licensed real estate agent and be able to buy and sell homes anywhere in BC.

And if you work really hard, you can even complete the real estate trading services license course in as little as ten weeks!

Compare this to many other professions, like teaching, law and nursing (which takes years of study and thousands of dollars in tuition fees,) it's no wonder that each year thousands of British Columbians try to get their real estate license in BC.

But before you jump in and take out your credit card, let's look at all the requirements you need to get your real estate trading services license in BC. This license allows you to buy and sell residential and/or commercial properties.

Step One: The Pre-Licensing Requirements

The Real Estate Council of BC is responsible for determining the appropriate education, and licensing requirements, for individuals seeking to be licensed as real estate practitioners in BC. Before you enroll in the required courses to get your license, you should make sure you meet their "pre-licensing requirements."

  • You must meet the "Good Reputation" guidelines
    Okay, this does not mean that you get a lot of likes or followers on social media! The Real Estate Council of BC wants to make sure that you haven't been convicted of some major criminal or civil offense or been disciplined by a professional body. For a closer look at what constitutes being of "good reputation", click here.
  • You must satisfy the English Language Proficiency Requirements
    We all know that BC is a multi-cultural province with many languages spoken. In real estate, English is the language used for real estate documents, education and communication in the province. Therefore, it's important that you are able to demonstrate an understanding of written and spoken English to satisfy the Language Proficiency Requirements. For more information on these requirements, click here.
  • You must satisfy the employment criteria
    You must also prove that you are eligible to work in Canada and meet one of the following employment criteria:
    • be a Canadian citizen
    • be of Permanent Resident status
    • hold a valid work permit/visa
    • be of Landed Immigrant status
  • You must be 19 years of age or older
    And, finally, you need to meet the age requirement. However, if are interested in a career in real estate and you are not yet 19, you can still complete the licensing course and examination. You have up to one year after the date of passing a licensing exam to apply for your real estate licence.

Step Two: Take the Required Courses

Once you have passed the pre-licensing requirements, there are two different courses you need to take to get your real estate license in BC.

(NOTE: In some circumstances, you may be eligible to have some, or all, of the educational requirements for your license waived depending on your prior education and/or experience. For more information on the Education Waivers and Guidelines, click here.

Course #1: The Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course

This course is offered exclusively through the UBC Sauder School of Business, Real Estate Division on behalf of the Real Estate Council of BC. It includes a combination of face-to-face classroom and online lectures/workshops, tutorial assistance from course specialists and online course resources. The course covers a range of subjects including real estate law, contracts, mortgage financing and marketing.

After you complete all the course materials, you will be required to pass the real estate exam. This is a three-hour long exam that consists of 100 multiple choice questions, each worth one point each. You must obtain a passing grade of 70% or higher to pass the exam. Yes, it's true the exam is difficult, and you will need to study a lot.

However, you should be wary of some of the statistics out there on how many people fail the exam. For example, The Real Estate Boot Camp claim on their website that the exam has less than a 50% success rate. According to the UBC Sauder School of Business, who teach the course, the passing rate for each sitting of the exam varies, and "the majority of students who write the exam will pass."

The UBC Real Estate Division, the Real Estate Council of British Columbia and the Financial Institutions Commission of British Columbia do not try to limit the number of students who pass the exam - they are only concerned with the fact that those who do pass the exam have the prerequisite knowledge to be likely to not harm the public.

Some other quick facts:

  • You can study part-time or full-time.
  • You can complete the course materials at your own pace and schedule.
  • The minimum amount of time you will need to complete all the course assignments is only 10 weeks and the maximum amount of time is within one year of registering for the course.
  • You can enroll in the course anytime of the year.

Optional Private Third-Party Courses like

There are also many different optional courses that are available from third party private companies in BC such as the BC Academy of Real Estate, GO BC Real Estate, Excel Realty Academy, Real Smart Real Estate Training, and These courses are not required but some students may find them helpful.

We've specifically developed to be an affordable "add-on" to complement the course materials in the UBC Real Estate Trading Services Licensing course. Our online tutorial program is based on the 26 chapters, and 1,000 questions with 4,000 answers, that are used in the UBC Real Estate Exam Study Guide.

One of the advantages to our program is that includes detailed explanations for all the questions, both right and wrong. This approach has been found to help students study more effectively for the exam as they better understand the reasons behind every answer. We've also created three-hour mock exams to further help prepare you for the actual real estate exam.

Course #2: The Trading Services Applied Practice Course.

The next course you must complete is the Trading Services Applied Practice Course which is delivered by the BC Real Estate Association on behalf of the Real Estate Council of BC. You can choose to enroll in either the Residential or the Commercial Residential Trading Services Course. The Applied Practice Course builds on the technical knowledge provided in the Real Estate Licensing Course, giving you opportunities to practice the skills you'll need most as a real estate professional. For more information on this course, click here.

Some other quick facts:

  • This course is offered at several locations throughout the province.
  • You will spend two to three weeks in the course before you are licensed and a further 4.5 months completing both classroom and practical field assignments.
  • It is a blended course delivered online and in the classroom.
  • You have up to six months to complete the final components of the course while working at a brokerage of your choice.

Step Three: Join a Brokerage

You must join a real estate brokerage after you have completed the Real Estate Trading Services License Course and passed the final real estate trading services licensing exam. There are many different brokerages to choose from, such as Re/MAX, Royal LePage Real Estate Services, Sutton West Coast Realty Keller Williams Elite Realty and Oakwyn Realty, to name a few. See "Choosing a Brokerage" on the website for more tips and suggestions on which brokerage to join.

Step Four: Submit Your Licensing Application

After you have selected a brokerage, you need to complete and submit your license application form, along with the license application fee, to the Real Estate Council of BC. Your licence application must be signed by the managing broker of the real estate brokerage that you have decided to join. Once the Council has approved your licensing application, you are now officially a real estate agent. Congratulations!

Step Five: Join A Real Estate Board

If you want to call yourself a REALTOR®, you must be a member of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and your local real estate board. There are 11 real estate boards in the province of British Columbia. For example, if you work in the Vancouver, Burnaby, or say Pitt Meadows, you would join the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. If you work in Surrey, you would join the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board. Once you are a member of a local real estate board, you are also a member of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA).

Real Estate Agent Versus REALTOR®

There are some differences to being a real estate agent versus being a REALTOR.® REALTORS® must adhere to a Code of Ethics and Conduct that has been in place since 1913. They must also be knowledgeable about developments in real estate and be actively be updating their education. REALTORS® also have access to Board MLS Systems, which facilitates the cooperate sale of properties across geographic areas to benefit consumers. For more information on REALTOR® Difference, click here.