Getting your real estate license

Submit a background check

A criminal background check is required by Iowa law for all real estate licensee applicants. This process can take 8-10 weeks, so it’s best to get started on it right away.

Request a fingerprint page from the Iowa Real Estate Commission by first creating an account on the Iowa Professional Licensing Bureau’s website. Visit this Website and follow steps to create a new user. Once you get your “My Iowa PLB” registered, start by clicking on “Submit Application/Renew” under My Iowa PLB – Home in the left-hand corner of your screen; you will start the application wizard. Follow the steps to submit a General Background Page Request. You must use the Iowa Real Estate Commission’s fingerprint card. No other fingerprint card will be accepted.

Send the completed fingerprint card, signed waiver, and check or money order for $52 to:

Iowa Real Estate Commission 200 E Grand St, STE 350
Des Moines, IA 50309

Once the background check has been reviewed by the commission the report is only valid for 210 days.

Take a 60-hour pre-test course

An Iowa Real Estate Commission approved course is required before you may take the exam. You have 3 different options for taking the course: Weekday Classroom, Weekend Classroom, and Online Self Study. Class schedule can be found at

Weekday Classroom: held only in Clive, Iowa for 8 business days in a row; 8am-5pm each day.
Weekend Classroom: held in various locations throughout the State of Iowa on Friday from 6pm-10pm, Saturday 8am-5pm, and Sunday 8am-5pm for three weekends in a row.
Online Self Study: You have six (6) months from the date and time of purchase to complete the Iowa Sales.
Pre-license course. Per Iowa law, extensions beyond six months cannot be granted. There are no exceptions.

Pass the Iowa licensing Exam

The licensing exam is comprised of the following sections with a required minimum score for each. Do not register for the exam until you have a completion certificate for the 60 Hour Pre-Test Course.
Section #Questions Passing Score Time Allowed
National 80 56 120 Min
State 40 28 60 Min
Combined Total 120 84 180 Min

The exam is administered by PSI Examination Services at locations around the state. Register by visiting or calling 800-733-9267. Once you have passed your exam, you have 6 months to finish all the required courses and then apply for your license.

Complete Additional Required Courses

The final step is completing the following courses:
Developing Professionalism 12 Hours
Buying Practices 12 Hours
Listing Practices 12 Hours

This course work must be completed during the 12 months prior to license application. These courses can be taken any time in the pre-licensing stage, but must be completed before you can apply for your Real Estate License. Class schedule can be found at

License Application And Errors And Omission Insurance

Once you have decided on a brokerage to partner with, you will need to submit an Application for Individual License (you will do this via your Iowa PLB Account as well). Additionally, you are responsible for carrying individual Errors and Omissions Insurance. Most

As an agent at Century 21 Signature Real Estate, your individual E & O insurance is maintained by our brokerage. You are automatically enrolled in the brokerage’s group policy, which covers both the firm and individual coverage. Our policy covers you for up to $1,000,000 of liability.

Become A Realtor

Once you have received your Iowa Salesperson License, you will need to make application to become a member of the local MLS, the Iowa Association of Realtors, and the National Association of Realtors.

© 2019 Signature Resources, Inc. All rights reserved.

CENTURY 21® and the CENTURY 21 Logo are registered service marks owned by Century 21 Real Estate LLC. Signature Resources, Inc. fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each office is independently owned and operated. Any services or products provided by independently owned and operated franchisees are not provided by, affiliated with or related to Century 21 Real Estate LLC nor any of its affiliated companies.

Pin It on Pinterest