How to become a realtor in North Dakota

Being a real estate salesperson is always profitable and brings multiple benefits. You help people and companies to sell and buy the property they need and you get your generous commission which allows a real estate agent to earn more than average US salary rates. In North Dakota, the realty market also blooms, so lots of people want to consider how to get a real estate license in ND.

It’s quite reasonable because even as a beginning associate, you can get good money and develop your experience to earn even more with time.

Of course, you cannot simply start selling homes or negotiate commercial property prices without the approved status of a real estate agent. For this, the license provided by the North Dakota Real Estate Commission (or shortened NDREC) is a must. We appreciate your high goals and in this blog, we created a one-fits-all guide for candidates who want to get their real estate license in North Dakota. Please, read this content from A to Z so as not to miss even a bite of important information.

Do you know?
– The research showed that in the past 12 months, over 6,964 residential properties were sold in North Dakota.

So, if you want to join the real estate community and achieve a high status as a real estate agent or broker (also called a salesperson generally), obtaining a realtor license in North Dakota is a must. We’ll focus on all the initial steps of your way to receiving congratulations with a new professional stage. We’ll write some tips and figures to help you with planning your real estate career. Besides, you can get up-to-date information about fees and requirements to meet.

Get and use it for the development of your real estate expertise.

9 Steps to Getting a Real Estate License

The whole licensing process for real estate agents and brokers in North Dakota is a bit more complex than in the same Mississippi, Kentucky, or Montana. Yet, it’s not impossible. In general, we can highlight seven main steps which lead an applicant from being a common person to graduation with the license of a real estate affiliate broker aka agent or salesperson.

1. State of North Dakota real estate license requirements

The first and foremost step to becoming a real estate agent is meeting the state requirements list. Let’s begin with it. These salesperson requirements are quite standard and you can find similar requirements in New Jersey, Utah, Nebraska, or Virginia. They are as follows:

  • Being older than the age of 18 years old.
  • Being a citizen of the US with a residence in North Dakota or an eligible alien with a residence permit.

One more requirement is your previous education must be at least a high school or college degree, yet, you can provide an equivalent to it (GED).

2. Complete 90 hours of required pre-licensing education

Your education is the best investment in your career as a real estate agent. In North Dakota, you are required to pass a 90-hour pre-license course of VE to access the necessary knowledge and practice in multiple disciplines including real estate laws and purchase contracts, management (property management and rights are included), marketing, advertisement, financial issues, insurance, mortgage, federal law system, and everything that may help you to navigate the world of real estate.

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Recommended Courses
Off- or online study packages that include a practice test and course completion certificates.

View Approved Courses

There are three main types of salesperson courses you can take to become a real estate agent.

In-person classes

When you study in person, you remain in close contact with your mentor and you can ask all the questions, get the instructions, and the information you get is full and comprehensive. Thus, taking such format of real estate courses is beneficial. Yet, it’s more expensive than any other, and it requires too much free time from you to complete and visit courses regularly. At the same time, when they are started, you get the maximum from the education you complete.

Livestream classes

It’s a golden mean between fully remote pre-licensing courses and in-premise coursework. You don’t need to attend a classroom in a training facility which often is situated in distant locations as you learn all the information via the Internet during real-time course lessons with a guide. It’s cheaper and fits the situation when the nearest location of a real estate education center is too far from you.

Self-paced online classes

In case you like to move at your own pace, learning via remote online pre-licensing courses is what you require. You start and finish your studies when it’s up to you using materials, videos, tutorials, and other education methods downloaded on an education platform online. That’s convenient when you’ve no time to join offline courses yet, the process can be too long if you are not in a hurry and spend just a couple of hours weekly on your education.

3. Pass the course final exam

Each training center provides an offer for an additional prep routine in the form of a course exam which is intended to overview each student’s results and outline weaknesses that should be improved. The score for you to be qualified as successfully passing the exam is 70%. Yet, you have as many attempts as you need to pass your course exam.

4. Apply for your North Dakota salesperson license

Unlike the rules of the government in Alaska, New York or Vermont, you’d apply for your real estate license prior to passing your state final exam. For this, you register on the NDREC’s website to submit your application. Besides, there is a payment to complete. We’ll get the estimate written below in a table for your consideration.

5. Submit fingerprints and pass a criminal background check

Passing fingerprinting and getting your criminal history checks report is also a must when applying for a North Dakota real estate license. Thus, note that you should undergo this also before your exam. Submit your application to get a document of your criminal record check here and plan when to be fingerprinted, please and don’t delay your exam since your fingerprint biometrics is received so as not to get it expired.

6. Pass the ND real estate examination

As in any other state, the real estate exam in North Dakota is provided in the form of a quiz with a time limit of 3 hours and 30 minutes. The provider who is approved for the licensing exam is the PSI Exam. You may register on its website, create your account, form the application, and schedule the exam’s date and time to keep them reserved. For more details and useful info, please, check the Candidate Handbook.

How hard is the North Dakota real estate exam?

It’s not among the hardest, like, for example Texas test, or the California exam. Yet, you need a thorough prep plan to pass it successfully. So, do not neglect your prep routines and study thoroughly to undergo it on the first try.

Do you know?
– The passing rate for new candidates for a real estate license in ND is 60%? Thus, 60 of 100 who pass the test succeed with it on the first try.

How many questions are on the North Dakota permit test?

The exam consists of 140 questions divided into National (100) and State (40) portions. Each portion’s results are calculated separately.

What score do you need to pass the ND real estate exam?

The passing score for the approval of the state exam in North Dakota is 70/100 in the National section and 30/40 in the State section. In case you pass the exam, the score remains unknown to you. If you fail, you get the results to prepare for a retake.

What happens if you fail the real estate exam in North Dakota?

You are welcome just to retake it within 12 months. Each portion should be retaken separately, so if you managed to pass one of them and failed another, you retake only the last packages.

7. Obtain errors and omissions insurance

An E&O insurance policy is also a must for an aspiring real estate agent in North Dakota. It protects both you from lawsuits if you make a mistake during property sales and your broker from reputation losses or hiring an attorney. To get your errors and omissions insurance program, please, contact the office of an insurer who provides this kind of service. Get more about it on the NDREC site.

8. Find a brokerage firm or a sponsoring broker

Being sponsored is also among the main requirements of real estate licensing in North Dakota. You should contact a reliable and reputable broker or brokering company which will take responsibility for hiring you and guide you in your real estate career.

Lots of brokers gladly invite fresh blood to their teams, so you can choose from the top ones in your area to expand your first experience.

9. Activate your state salesperson license

The last thing to do is to visit the Commission’s site to apply for a license. Thus, you might do the following procedure:

Prepare and check your documentation in advance.
Enter the website and go to the licensure department.
Download the request form and fill it in with the information about you.
Attach documents that confirm your successful graduation from the real estate course, passing certificate of your exam, your E&O policy, and the fees paid. Provide a double-check to avoid errors.
Expect your license to be approved for a couple of business days if everything is right. You’ll be mailed about the results with a letter.

How much does it cost to get a real estate license in North Dakota?

When you prepare for your real estate licensing, calculating costs is the #1 goal. There are several payments you have to contribute to your future real estate career. We’ve indicated them in the table below.

Cost item Price
Course tuition From $729 to $939
License application fee $150
Examination fee $131
Credit repo fee $8
Fingerprinting $41.25
RE recovery fund fee $20
Total: From $1,079.25 to $1,289.25

Besides, do not forget to include in the pricing estimate your errors & omissions insurance policy which depends on a chosen insurer.

Local real estate license renewal requirements

North Dakota offers quite specific requirements for real estate license renewal. Unlike states where you have to renew your license every couple of years (i.e., Maryland, Tennessee and Alabama have such rules), in North Dakota you have to prolong your license annually and complete CE to maintain it in an active mode.

What is required for RE license renewal?

  • Apply for renewal on the  Renewal directory of NDREC.
  • Pay a fee of $125 (if you are late with your prolongation, a penalty of $100 per month is added).
  • Take a 12-hour continuing education course in a state-approved CE training center. These CE hours are available to complete them in most special education facilities around the state.
  • Submit your CE certificate and your fee with the application.

That’s all. Only remember that you have to complete your CE training 10 days before your license expires to get it as proof for renewal.

North Dakota real estate license reciprocity

The state of North Dakota offers convenient reciprocal conditions for non-residents with real estate licenses issued by the following states:

  • Georgia,
  • Iowa,
  • Minnesota.

Thus, the residents of these states continue their real estate careers in North Dakota without complex requirements and get multiple opportunities. They can simply inform NDREC about their new licensed sponsoring broker, and their license, and pass a required portion of state-specified examination questions. Besides, all non-resident real estate salespersons must fill in the Consent to Suit form.

Unfortunately, real estate agents from other states like Arizona, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Maine, Connecticut, Nevada, Hawaii, and others have to restart their licensing when they move to North Dakota like new salespersons.

North Dakota Real Estate Commission (NDREC)

The main authority responsible for real estate licensing and regulations is the North Dakota Real Estate Commission headquartered in Bismark. You can contact the authority by entering its website. The sitemap offers comprehensive information including the latest news in the industry, a resources library, licensees directory, and board member portal services.

Besides online services, you can also contact NDREC by the following methods:

Resulting all the information we provided you with in this guide on how to become a real estate agent in North Dakota let’s get the most frequent questions to be answered.

Becoming a real estate agent: FAQs

Can I get my North Dakota real estate license online?

Moreover, you have to submit your real estate licensure application only online on the NDREC’s website as paper applications are not valid. Thus, it’s possible to get it online.

How long does it take to become a real estate agent in North Dakota?

The process depends on your pace. Typically, to receive your license from scratch you have to reserve at least from four to six months. Some manage to make it faster by picking up full-time classes.

How much money can I make as a North Dakota real estate agent?

According to the data as of April 2024, an average real estate agent in North Dakota gets a salary of $82,840 per year. That’s far not so high as in California or Massachusetts, yet, it’s higher than the median.

Can a felony be a real estate agent in North Dakota?

Typically, being a felony is not a reason to disqualify a person from becoming a real estate agent in North Dakota. Yet, it is at the discretion of NDREC to decide whether the conviction is allowed to serve as a real estate salesperson. Thus, you are welcome to try to obtain a license and you must provide your criminal background report to the licensee.

Pre-Licensing Courses
About the author
Michael Baker is a journalist with over 5 years of experience in the real estate industry. His knowledge of licensing processes, procedures and requirements makes her an expert in the field.