Becoming a Realtor is an incredible opportunity for entrepreneurs, with nearly limitless growth possibilities. While the thought of going through the licensing process may feel a little daunting at first, we’re going to walk you through the entire process and help you become a real estate agent in South Carolina.
The South Carolina Real Estate Commission (SCREC) requires that you be In order to become a licensed real estate agent in the state of South Carolina, you must be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma or equivalent, and be lawfully present and able to work in the US. If you meet the basic requirements, you’ll just have to complete the following steps:
Once SCREC approves your exam application, you will receive an examination eligibility letter. This letter is valid for one year, so make sure you take the state exam prior to it expiring. PSI administers the South Carolina real estate salesperson licensing exam. Download the PSI Real Estate Candidate Handbook here.
Once you decide to become a real estate agent in South Carolina, you’re excited to get started ASAP selling homes, right? Before you leave your current job, it’s important to understand how long the licensing process can take in SC. Here is what an average timeline looks like:
While this timeline may seem a little daunting, we have a few suggestions to expedite things. First, if you enroll in an online course (vs a classroom style), you’ll be able to learn at your own pace and get your hours in quickly. We would also recommend getting your background check done and interviewing brokerages while you are finishing up your real estate course, so you are ready to hang your license with a broker as soon you pass the state exam.
If you get through your coursework quickly, it’s definitely possible to become a real estate agent in South Carolina in less than eight (8) weeks!
There are several fees involved when working to become a real estate agent in South Carolina…
Getting a license is just the beginning! What many aspiring agents don’t always realize is that there are several other expenses to consider when becoming a real estate agent in South Carolina. Whether you’re building a new business and opening a hair salon, coffee shop, or your real estate empire, keep in mind there are always licensing and start-up costs involved.
Here are some of the most common costs:
To get your real estate license, you’ll have to attend a school that’s approved by the South Carolina Real Estate Commission. There are at least a dozen approved real estate schools throughout the state. Some are online, others in person, and a few do a combination of the two.
Here are a few of the most popular:
When shopping for the best online real estate schools in South Carolina, you’ll want to compare pricing, but there are a few other things you will need to consider:
In South Carolina, you must affiliate with a real estate brokerage in order actively help home buyers and sellers. This is often referred to as the “sponsoring broker” or “managing broker.” Picking the right brokerage to work with can be key to your success as a newly licensed agent.
When researching and meeting with different brokerages, keep in mind that many are independently owned franchises. So one Better Homes and Gardens or Keller Williams office could be completely different from another that’s just 10 minutes away. The culture, training, support team, and sometimes even the fees and commission splits can vary from franchise to franchise.
We also highly recommend looking into virtual or cloud-based brokers. Several are perfect for new agents, especially those that are starting as part-time agents. You often have support after traditional business hours, live classes are recorded so you can learn at your own pace.
While many newly licensed agents are looking for the best commission splits when shopping for brokers, we would highly recommend that you make that #2 or #3 on your list. The most important thing you should look for in a brokerage is how they support brand new real estate agents. Do they have a formal training program? Will you have at least 3 people you can reach out to if you have questions? Are they available outside traditional business hours? Do they have mentors – and what exactly will the mentors do to assist you?
If you ask a dozen real estate agents, at least half would describe the South Carolina real estate licensing exam as “not easy.” The salesperson examination consists of 110 questions; 80 national and 30 state-specific questions. All questions are multiple-choice, and you’ll have three (3) hours to complete the licensing exam.
It’s not uncommon for people not to pass the exam on the first try. They make it fairly simple for you to retake the exam, you just need to wait 24 hours before scheduling your next attempt. You have an unlimited number of opportunities to test within a one-year period. The cost is $50 for each attempt to retake the state exam.
In order to become a real estate broker in South Carolina, you must have a minimum of three years of active licensed real estate experience and be at least 21 years old. Additionally, you will have another 60 hours of training that includes the Broker IIIA and IIIB pre-licensing courses. You’ll also have to apply and pass the South Carolina real estate broker exam. The exam fee is $63 and the broker license fee is $125.
The annual earnings for real estate agents in South Carolina are going to vary greatly from person to person and location to location. ZipRecruiter reports that SC agents make an average between $36K and $100K annually. Indeed.com reports that agents with 1-2 years experience make $90K on average and those with 10+ years experience average $118K+.
To calculate how much you could potentially earn as a South Carolina real estate agent, follow these steps:
If you live in Hilton Head and the average sales price was $600,000 you would net about $10,000 more each year. Your location, level of experience, and broker splits are going to play a big role in how much you can make as a real estate agent in South Carolina.
Honestly, it depends on what your goals are. If you just want to sell a few homes each year to friends and family, you’ll have to crunch the numbers (like we did above) to see if the cost of getting and maintaining your real estate license is worth it.
If you plan to jump in and make a career in selling homes in South Carolina, then absolutely! The real estate market is booming. It can be a challenge moving from a salaried position to a commission-based business, so it’s important to have at least six months of savings in the bank. If you don’t have that yet, then you may want to keep your current job for a short period of time until you lay the foundation for your new real estate business.