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Iowa Real Estate License State Requirements

Please be sure you understand the requirements before taking the pre-license education and licensing examination. If you have any questions, please contact the Commission office at (515) 281-5910 or visit their website Iowa Real Estate Commission.

An applicant for an initial real estate broker's or salesperson's license shall be subject to a national criminal history check through the federal bureau of investigation. The commission shall request the criminal history check and shall provide the applicant's fingerprints to the department of public safety for submission through the state criminal history repository to the federal bureau of investigation. The applicant shall authorize release of the results of the criminal history check to the real estate commission. The applicant shall pay the actual cost of the fingerprinting and criminal history check, if any. Unless the criminal history check was completed within the ninety calendar days prior to the date the license application is received by the real estate commission, the commission shall reject and return the application to the applicant. The results of a criminal history check conducted pursuant to this subsection shall not be considered a public record under chapter 22.

General Requirements for Salesperson License. A person who is licensed under and employed by or otherwise associated with a real estate broker or firm is a “salesperson” as defined in Iowa Code section 543B.5(19) and rule 193E—2.1(543B).

  • An original application for a salesperson license cannot be issued to inactive status. An applicant for a salesperson license must be recommended by an affiliating broker to be granted a license as provided in Iowa Code section 543B.16.
  • The salesperson license is issued to the custody and control of the broker as provided in Iowa Code section 543B.24. If the salesperson is terminated, or terminates the employment or association, the license must be returned to the commission. Once the license is returned or mailed to the commission, it is unlawful for that salesperson to perform any acts requiring a real estate license as provided in Iowa Code section 543B.33. However, if the license is transferred, as provided in rule 193E—6.2(543B), the salesperson may work immediately for the new broker.
  • A salesperson must be assigned to a licensed broker or firm and cannot conduct business independently.
  • Except as provided in Iowa Code section 543B.21, an applicant for a salesperson license must meet all requirements of Iowa Code section 543B.15.
  • An applicant for a real estate salesperson license must be a person whose application for licensure has not been rejected in this or any other state or jurisdiction within 12 months prior to the date of application, and whose real estate license has not been revoked in this or any other state within two years prior to the date of application.
  • An applicant for a real estate salesperson license shall be 18 years of age or older. An applicant is not ineligible because of citizenship, sex, race, religion, marital status, or national origin, although the application form may require citizenship information.
  • An applicant for a real estate salesperson license who has been convicted of forgery, embezzlement, obtaining money under false pretenses, theft, extortion, conspiracy to defraud, or another similar offense, or of any crime involving moral turpitude, in a court of competent jurisdiction in this state or in any other state, jurisdiction, territory, or district of the United States, or in any foreign jurisdiction, may be denied a license by the commission on the grounds of the conviction. “Conviction” is defined in Iowa Code section 543B.15(3) and 193E—2.1(543B).
  • An applicant for a real estate salesperson license who has had a professional license of any kind revoked in this or any other jurisdiction may be denied a license by the commission on the grounds of the revocation.

    Education Requirements
    Salesperson prelicense education requirements. As required by Iowa Code section 543B.15(8) and 193E—Chapter 16, the required course of study for the salesperson licensing examination shall consist of 60 classroom or computer–based hours of real estate principles and practices. To be eligible to take the examination, the salesperson prelicense education must be completed during the 12 months prior to taking the examination.

    License Examination. Examinations for licensure as a real estate salesperson shall be conducted by the commission or its authorized representative.

  • 4.2(3) Evidence of completion of prelicense education required. An examinee shall be required to show evidence at the examination site that required prelicense education has been completed. If the commission has granted a substitution, waiver, or variance of prelicense education, the letter granting the substitution, waiver, or variance will serve as evidence of completion. Persons planning to qualify under rule 193E—5.3(543B) must obtain written authorization from the commission to show at the examination site.

    Salesperson Continuing Education Requirements.

  • As a requirement of license renewal in active status, each salesperson shall complete a minimum of 36 hours of approved programs, courses or activities. The continuing education must be completed during the three calendar years of the license term and cannot be carried over to another license term.
  • All first–time salespersons renewing licenses to maintain active status shall complete 36 commission–approved classroom hours by December 31 of the third year of licensure. The following courses satisfy the first license renewal continuing education requirement:
    Developing Professionalism and Ethical Practices 12 hours
    Buying Practices 12 hours
    Listing Practices 12 hours
  • A salesperson license may be renewed without the required continuing education, but it may only be renewed to inactive status. Prior to reactivating a license which has been issued inactive due to failure to submit evidence of continuing education, the licensee must submit evidence that all deficient continuing education hours have been completed. The maximum continuing education hours shall not exceed the prescribed number of hours of one license renewal period and must be completed during the three calendar years preceding activation of the license.

    General Requirements for Broker License. An applicant for a broker license must meet all requirements of Iowa Code section 543B.15.

  • An applicant for a real estate broker’s license must be a person whose application for licensure has not been rejected in this or any other state or jurisdiction within 12 months prior to the date of application, and whose real estate license has not been revoked in this or any other state within two years prior to the date of application.
  • An applicant for a real estate broker license shall be 18 years of age or older. An applicant is not ineligible because of citizenship, sex, race, religion, marital status, or national origin, although the application form may require citizenship information.
  • An applicant for a real estate broker’s license who has been convicted of forgery, embezzlement, obtaining money under false pretenses, theft, extortion, conspiracy to defraud, or another similar offense, or of any crime involving moral turpitude, in a court of competent jurisdiction in this state or in any other state, territory, or district of the United States, or in any foreign jurisdiction, may be denied a license by the commission on the grounds of the conviction. “Conviction” is defined in Iowa Code section 543B.15(3).
  • An applicant for a real estate broker’s license who has had a professional license of any kind revoked in this or any other jurisdiction may be denied a license by the commission on the grounds of the revocation.

    Broker Education Requirements:
    As required by Iowa Code section 543B.15(8) and 193E—subrule 16.3(1), an applicant for licensure as a real estate broker shall complete at least 72 classroom hours of commission–approved real estate education within 24 months prior to taking the broker examination. This education shall be in addition to the required salesperson prelicense course. Effective January 1, 2005, and thereafter, all persons applying for a broker license within their first renewal term must complete the 36–hour salesperson postlicense courses, including 12 hours of Developing Professionalism and Ethical Practices, 12 hours of Buying Practices and 12 hours of Listing Practices, before a broker license can be issued.

    Broker Experience:
    As required by Iowa Code section 543B.15 (8), an applicant for licensure as a real estate broker must have been a licensed real estate salesperson actively engaged in real estate for a period of at least 24 months preceding the date of application, or shall have had experience as a former broker or salesperson or otherwise substantially equivalent experience to that which a licensed real estate salesperson would ordinarily receive during a period of 24 months.
    a. An applicant for a broker license may use active experience as a former Iowa salesperson or active salesperson experience in a state or jurisdiction which has a current reciprocal licensing agreement or memorandum in place with Iowa, or a combination of both, to satisfy the experience requirement for a broker license only if the former Iowa salesperson or reciprocal state or jurisdiction salesperson was actively licensed for not less than 24 months and if the license on which the experience is based has not been expired for more than three years prior to the date the completed broker application with fee is filed with the commission. b. For waiver of commission rules or substitution of experience, see Iowa Code section 543B.15 and the uniform rules for the professional licensing and regulation division at 193—Chapter 5.

    Broker License Examination Requirements. Examinations for licensure as a real estate broker shall be conducted by the commission or its authorized representative.

  • Evidence of completion of prelicense education required. An examinee shall be required to show evidence at the examination site that required prelicense education has been completed. If the commission has granted substitution, waiver, or variance of prelicense education, the letter granting substitution, waiver, or variance will serve as evidence of completion. Persons planning to qualify under rule 193E—5.3(543B) must obtain written authorization from the commission to show at the examination site.

    Broker Continuing Education Requirements.

  • As a requirement of license renewal in active status, each broker or broker associate shall complete a minimum of 36 hours of approved programs, courses or activities. The continuing education must be completed during the three calendar years of the license term and cannot be carried over to another license term.
  • Brokers and broker associates renewing December 2001 and thereafter shall complete approved courses in the following subjects to renew to active status, except in accordance with 193E—Chapter 16.
    Law Update 8 hours
    Ethics 4 hours
    Electives 24 hours
  • A license may be renewed without the required continuing education, but it can only be renewed to inactive status. Prior to reactivating a license which has been issued inactive due to the licensee’s failure to submit evidence of continuing education, the licensee must submit evidence that all deficient continuing education hours have been completed. The maximum continuing education hours shall not exceed the prescribed number of hours of one license renewal period and must be completed during the three calendar years preceding activation of the license.
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