Real Estate Brokers may be granted licensure by the Standard method once they have completed and passed both portions of the Broker Examination. Real Estate Brokers who have held an active broker license in another state within the last five years do not need to complete the General/National portion of the examination in order to be eligible for licensure in PA. However, all applicants by the Standard method must be approved by the Real Estate Commission prior to registering to sit for the Broker exams.
To qualify to sit for the examinations, applicants must complete 240 hours (16 credits) of instruction in professional real estate education, as determined by the Commission under section 35.271(b), from an accredited college or an approved real estate education provider in this Commonwealth. Courses must be completed within 10 years of the passing date of both portions of the examination. You may also qualify if you received a bachelor’s degree with a major in Real Estate from an accredited college, a juris doctor degree from an accredited law school, or completed 240 hours of broker pre-licensure coursework in another jurisdiction that was approved to meet the requirements for licensure in that jurisdiction. Two credits will also be allowed for each year of active practice the applicant has had as a licensed broker in another state during the 10 years immediately preceding the submission of the exam application.
An applicant must also document at least 3 years of experience as a licensed salesperson, with experience qualifications that the Commission considers adequate for practice as a broker, or possess at least 3 years of other experience, education, or both, that the Commission considers the equivalent of 3 years’ experience as a licensed salesperson. Please read section 35.271 of the Real Estate Commission regulations to obtain all information about education and experience requirements.
To obtain approval to sit for the exam, you must register an account or log on to your registered account at www.pals.pa.gov and submit an application for the type of broker license that you wish to hold once you have passed the exams. There are four main types of broker licenses:
Associate Broker – An individual broker who is employed by another broker
Broker Multi-Licensee – broker of record - The individual broker responsible for the real estate transactions of a partnership, association or corporation that holds a broker’s license
Broker Corporation, LLC, or Partnership – A broker entity that has been registered as a corporation, LLC, or partnership with the PA Corporations Bureau
Broker Sole Proprietor – An individual broker who is not registered as a corporation, LLC, or partnership and is not employed by another broker
If you have never been licensed as a broker before in the Commonwealth, you will complete the application and pay the fees for both the license and the broker examination qualification. You will then provide documentation to show that you have met the education and experience requirements; you will not be asked to provide the remaining documentation listed in the application until after you pass the exams. Once your qualification has been determined, you will be notified that you are approved to sit for the broker examinations. You can then go to PSI Exams website to register for the exam. Once you have passed, you will go back to the license application to upload the passing score sheets and the remaining documentation required for a license.
To help reduce your processing time, please note the following suggestions and information:
The Real Estate Commission is not able to pre-review application materials or qualifications. Please do not contact the Commission with questions about whether you qualify or whether you would be granted licensure under any particular circumstance, including past criminal conviction history. You must meet the education and examination requirements and apply for the license, then submit an application with all required documentation to receive a determination as to your qualifications and eligibility for licensure.
An official state criminal history record check (CHRC) is required from your current state of residence. For applicants living, working, or completing training in Pennsylvania, your CHRC will be generated automatically as part of your application and the required fee will be included at checkout.
In addition to the background check from your current state of residence, you will need to submit official state CHRCs from every state where you have lived, worked, or completed training during the last 5 years. An FBI background check can be submitted in lieu of state checks where you previously lived, worked or trained. No record checks can be dated more than 90 days prior to the date you submit your application.
The Real Estate Broker license application process begins when you register and log in at www.pals.pa.gov. Once you are logged in, you must scroll to the bottom of your dashboard and click on "Apply for New License", then select "Real Estate Commission", then select the type of broker license you wish to hold, as detailed above. If you have never been licensed as a broker before in the Commonwealth, you will complete the application and pay the fees for both the license and the broker examination qualification. You will then provide documentation to show that you have met the education and experience requirements; you will not be asked to provide the remaining documentation listed in the application until after you pass the exams. Once your qualification has been determined, you will be notified that you are approved to sit for the broker examinations. You can then go to PSI Exams website to register for the exam. Once you have passed, you will go back to the license application to upload the passing score sheets and the remaining documentation required for a license.
If you wish to license a corporation, LLC, or partnership as a broker, you must first apply for the broker multi-licensee license and (if you have never held a broker license before) complete the steps to qualify for the exam. Once you have passed the exam you can resume your broker multi-licensee application and begin the broker corporation application for the company using the application number from the broker multi-licensee application.
To upload additional documents to your application, you must return to your dashboard, then locate the application in the "Activities" section. Click on the blue plus sign next to the application reference number and then click the checklist item that you wish to upload a document to. The system will not show that a document has been uploaded, however, if you get a "check mark" after the upload process, it was uploaded successfully. Please be aware that the status of checklist items will not change until your application is reviewed by a reviewing officer under the timeframe provided. If there are documents missing or information that needs to be corrected, you will receive an e-mail at your registered e-mail address with details on how to resolve the missing or incorrect information.
Broker Corporations, LLCs, or Partnerships and Broker Sole Proprietors must be inspected prior to the issuance of a license. Once your application is complete, it will be referred to an inspector, who will contact you directly to schedule an inspection of the office.
Once your license has been issued, you will see it immediately under the Professional License Details banner of your dashboard. You will receive the license at the broker's main office in 7-10 business days after date of issue.
To register for the exams: www.psiexams.com or call 855-746-8175
To review the Real Estate Commission Law and Regulations: www.dos.pa.gov/estate, click on "Commission Law and Regulations"
To locate an approved Real Estate Education Provider: www.pals.pa.gov/verify, click on "Facility Search" and then select the Board/Commission as "Real Estate Commission" and license type as "Real Estate Education Provider". There are three subtypes in the drop-down menu, the RE type is for in-state schools, the RU type is for out-of-state schools, and the RUC type is for accredited colleges/universities. You must contact each school individually to determine if they offer courses that would suit your needs.