The journey to acquire your California real estate license is exciting and challenging. We understand that preparing for the California Real Estate Exam can be incredibly stressful. The exam is the final barrier between a hopeful real estate professional and their dream job.
With an average real estate salary averaging $59,830 in California, it is no wonder why real estate has become such a popular career choice.
To become a real estate agent in California and represent buyers and sellers in the real estate transaction process, a candidate must complete the following steps, including passing the California Real Estate Exam.
- Complete 135 Hours of Approved Pre-License Education
- Pass the Course Final Exam
- Pass a Criminal Background Check
- Pass the California Salesperson License Exam
- Find a Sponsoring Broker to Work Under
- Complete Your Licensing Application
Learn more about how to get a real estate license in California.
This post provides all the information needed to better understand the California Real Estate Salesperson Exam. This article contains essential study materials and our most frequently asked questions, including:
- How To Schedule Your Exam
- Where Do You Take the California Real Estate Exam?
- How Much Does It Cost to Take the California Real Estate Exam?
- Where Do You Take the California Real Estate Exam?
- What Is on the California Real Estate Exam?
- How Hard Is the California Real Estate Exam?
- California Real Estate Exam Practice Questions
- What Should You Expect on the Day of Your Test?
- Important Calculations
- Your Results
- What To Do After You Complete Your Exam
- Important Points of Contact
Before Registering for the Exam
Before a candidate can register to take their California Real Estate Exam, they must complete 135 hours of pre-licensing education. The California pre-licensing education is divided into three sections. Hopeful licensees complete the following courses:
- REAL ESTATE PRINCIPLES (45 HOURS)
- REAL ESTATE PRACTICE (45 HOURS)
- Any one of the following 45-Hour classes:
- Real Estate Appraisal
- Property Management
- Real Estate Finance
- Real Estate Economics
- Legal Aspects of Real Estate
- Real Estate Office Administration
- General Accounting
- Business Law, Escrows
- Mortgage Loan Brokering and Lending
- Computer Applications in Real Estate
- Common Interest Developments
After you finish your California real estate pre-licensing education, you need to pass a course final exam by scoring at least a 70%.
How Do You Schedule Your Exam?
Before scheduling the exam, you must apply to take the exam.
Candidates register for the exam online by visiting the CA.gov website, https://secure.dre.ca.gov/publicasp/CurrentExams.asp.
Select your area and the type of exam you are scheduling. Then you can sign up for a specific time and location.
What to Bring on Exam Day
On exam day, candidates must bring a valid form of photo identification from within the last five (5) years. This ID must have a photo of the candidate and be current. Here is a list of accepted ID.
- Current state-issued driver's license or DMV identification card
- U.S. Passport or Passport issued by a foreign government
- U.S. Military identification card
Calculators are provided. You may not bring your calculator.
What is NOT allowed on exam day:
- cell phones
- smart glasses
- study materials
- video or digital recording devices
- lapel pins
- tie tacs
- hats or caps
- other items deemed inappropriate by proctors
How Much Does It Cost to Take the California Real Estate Exam?
The candidate must pay a $60 fee for a salesperson examination fee. If scheduling your appointment online, you must pay the total amount via credit card when scheduling the exam.
You can take the California salesperson exam as many times as you need to pass. Each attempt costs $60. Rescheduling your first exam costs $15. Subsequent rescheduled exams cost an additional $30.
Where Do You Take the California Real Estate Exam?
Students must take their salesperson exams at a designated testing center. Candidates register for the exam online by visiting the CA.gov website, https://secure.dre.ca.gov/publicasp/CurrentExams.asp.
There are various testing locations you can choose. The areas available are Fresno, Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento, and San Diego.
What Is on the California Real Estate Exam?
The California Real Estate Salesperson Examination consists of 150 total questions. To pass, you need to answer 70% of the questions correctly.
Area 1 — Property Ownership and Land Use Controls and Regulations
Approximately 15% of exam
- Classes of Property
- Property Characteristics
- Types of Ownership
- Descriptions of Property
- Government Rights in Land
- Public Controls
- Environmental Hazards and Regulations
- Private Controls
- Water Rights
- Special Categories of Land
Area 2 — Laws of Agency and Fiduciary Duties
Approximately 17% of exam
- Law, Definition and Nature of Agency Relationships, Types of Agencies, and Agents
- Creation of Agency and Agency Agreements
- Responsibilities of Agent to Seller/Buyer as Principal
- Disclosure of Agency
- Disclosure of Acting as Principal or Other Interest
- Termination of Agency
- Commission and Fees
- Responsibilities of Agent to Non-Client Third Parties
Area 3 — Property Valuation and Financial Analysis
Approximately 14% of exam
- Methods of Estimating Value
- Financial Analysis
Area 4 — Financing
Approximately 9% of exam
- General Concepts
- Types of Loans
- Sources of Financing
- Government Programs
- Mortgages/Deeds of Trust/Notes
- Financing/Credit Laws
- Loan Brokerage
- Types of Loan Originators
Area 5 — Transfer of Property
Approximately 8% of exam
- Title Insurance
- Tax Aspects
- Special Processes
- Transfer Through Court Supervision
- Types of Vesting
Area 6 — Practice of Real Estate and Disclosures (Includes Specialty Areas)
Approximately 25% of exam
- Trust Account Management
- Fair Housing Laws
- Truth in Advertising
- Record-Keeping Requirements
- Agency Supervision
- Permitted Activities of Unlicensed Sales Assistants
- DRE Jurisdiction and Disciplinary Actions
- Licensing and Continuing Education Requirements and Procedures
- California Real Estate Recovery Fund
- General Ethics
- Property Management
- Commercial/Industrial/Income Properties
- Specialty Areas
- Transfer Disclosure Statement
- Natural Hazard Disclosure Statements
- Disclosure of Material Facts Affecting Property Value
- Need for Inspection and Obtaining/Verifying Information
- Servicing Diverse Populations
Area 7 — Contracts
Approximately 12% of exam
- Listing Agreements
- Buyer Broker Agreements
- Offers/Purchase Contracts
- Promissory Notes/Securities
- Purchase/Lease Options
- Advanced Fee
How Hard Is the California Real Estate Exam?
The exam can be challenging, but it is not something that should intimidate students. We created a California real estate exam prep course to help students pass their first time!
California Real Estate Exam Practice Questions
1. Which of the following elements is required in a valid bill of sale?
(a) The date
(b) The acknowledgment
(c) The seller's signature
(d) The verification
2. Which of the following loans describe a balloon loan?
(a) A fully amortized loan
(b) A partially amortized loan
(c) A self-liquidating loan
(d) A standing loan
3. Which of the following instruments transfer possession of real property but does not transfer ownership?
(a) A trust deed
(b) A sublease
(c) A security agreement
(d) An easement grant
4. How many years is a real estate broker required to keep copies of trust account records?
(a) One year
(b) Three years
(c) Five years
(d) Seven years
5. Which of the following legal processes give the government the right to take private land for public use?
(a) Police Power
(b) Eminent domain
6. If an interest in real property is acquired by prescription, which of the following privileges transfer to the acquiring party?
(a) The right to use another's land
(b) A possessory title
(c) An equitable interest
(d) A private grant
7. Where are grant deeds recorded for real property?
(a) With the title company
(b) With the lender
(c) With the county
(d) With the city
8. Which type of tenancy is considered joint ownership of real property by two or more persons with undivided interest (not necessarily equal) without the right of survivorship?
(a) Tenancy in partnership
(b) Tenancy by the entireties
(c) Tenancy in common
(d) Leasehold Tenancy
9. What is the Federal Housing Administration's role in the financing of real property?
(a) Act as the lender of funds
(b) Insure loans made by approved lenders
(c) Purchase specific trust deeds
(d) Sell loans on the secondary market
10. Which of the following clauses is included in a trust deed to insure that the rights of the beneficiary shall be primary
to all subsequent trust deeds?
(a) Acceleration clause
(b) Alienation clause
(c) Subdivision clause
(d) Subordination clause
What Should You Expect on the Day of Your Test?
On the exam day, candidates should report to the test center thirty (30) minutes before the examination and check in with the test center administrator. The candidate is required to show their photo I.D.
Candidates take their exams on a computer at the test center. You do not need computer experience or typing skills to take your exam. Applicants have three (3) hours to answer 150 multiple-choice questions. They must pass with at least a 70%. The minimum passing score is 70%, which means you must correctly answer 105 out of 150 questions.
Don't forget these calculations!
These calculations are not available at the test center and should be memorized.
Candidates may use the following information in making mathematical calculations on the real estate examinations unless otherwise stated in the text of the question:
- 43,560 square feet/acre
- 5,280 feet/mile
- Round off calculations (where applicable)
How to Pass Your Exam
At VanEd Real Estate School, we make passing your exam simple with our California Real Estate Exam Prep Course Program, which contains a full review of your pre-license courses and various practice questions that you will find on the exam.
Results are provided upon completion of the exam. Some additional correspondence might be mailed to you within five business days. You will not be informed of your final score if you pass.
If you do not pass, you will be notified of your score in each subject area, only when unsuccessful. Those who do not pass may apply to retake the examination.
Learn more about how to retake the exam here.
Important Points of Contact
CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF REAL ESTATE (CDRE)
1651 Exposition Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95815
Written and Published by: VanEd