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How to Get Your Real
Estate License in

Do you dream of selling luxury apartments in Boston or lakeside properties in Springfield? If you’re here, then you must be thinking about getting your Massachusetts real estate license, and I can tell you that now is the best time to get into the business. Maybe it’s been your goal to get your license and become involved in real estate sales for a while now, or maybe you’re trying to find a new career with higher earning potential. I’ve certainly been there.

I first arrived in New York City as a struggling actor, and I got my license and my first job as a real estate agent as a survival gig, so I could have some money between auditions. I never dreamed I would become the number one real estate agent in New York City or star in Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listing New York,” but if I can build a successful career from virtually nothing, you can too.

You’re here because you want to know how to get your real estate license in Massachusetts. Fortunately, the licensing process and education requirements tend to be fairly similar throughout the United States. Some of the finer details change from state to state. Let’s start with the basic list of requirements you’ll need to meet to become a new licensee in Massachusetts.

  • Meet all the prerequisites.
  • Finish your pre-licensing education courses.
  • Apply to take the state’s real estate salesperson exam.
  • Pass the Massachusetts state exam.

Now that you know the basic expectations, let’s take a deeper look at each of these steps together.

4 Steps to Getting Your Massachusetts Real Estate License

1. Ensure that you meet the prerequisites.

The first step is to make sure that you’re at least 18 years of age since every state will require this as a prerequisite. Other than that, the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons also requires that you have a valid social security number, though you aren’t required to be a resident of Massachusetts nor a U.S. citizen. You’ll also need to have your high school diploma or GED.

2. Complete the Massachusetts pre-licensing education.

computer coffee notepad

In order to become a salesperson, you’ll need to take 40 hours of approved education courses in Massachusetts real estate school. Your coursework can be completed in person or through online classes. You’ll generally have options for day classes and night classes, so you can complete your license education in a way that works for you.

Your 40 hours of coursework will be divided into two sections. The first section will focus on teaching you the material that you’ll need to understand to pass your real estate salesperson license test. The last few course hours will focus on building your practical knowledge and conducting test preparation for your real estate exam. It’s a good idea to spend some time studying outside of class, too. In particular, many real estate students tend to have difficulty with some of the mathematical concepts at first.

Once you’ve completed the required hours for your license class, you’ll need to pass your course’s real estate exam. The exam consists of 100 questions, and you’ll need a minimum score of 75% to pass. You’ll receive a certificate of completion for your course after passing the exam.

Note that there are two kinds of licenses for real estate professionals in Massachusetts:  a real estate salesperson license and a real estate broker license. You should also know that simply completing the licensing process won’t make you a REALTOR. That’s because REALTOR is a copyrighted term owned by the National Association of REALTORS (NAR). Its members have their own requirements and are upheld to a specific code of ethics.

3. Apply to take the real estate salesperson exam.

Before you can take the state real estate license exam, you’ll need to be approved by the Board of Registration of Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons. You’ll need to send an application to take the exam to the PSI office, along with three candidate endorsements. The individuals giving the endorsements must not be related to you, but they don’t have to be Massachusetts residents.

4. Pass the Massachusetts real estate exam.

man taking real estate exam

Once you’ve scheduled a test date at a PSI testing center, your next step is to pass your real estate license exam. You’ll be able to book an online exam with an e-proctor if needed. The state of Massachusetts exam consists of 120 multiple choice questions and is broken into two sections. The first section of the final exam is a general portion that covers national regulations and practices. This national portion is 80 questions. The second section is a state portion, which covers Massachusetts real estate law. This section is 40 questions. You’ll need to achieve a minimum score of 70% on each section in order to pass and be eligible to receive your salesperson license. You’ll have four hours total to complete the exam.

If you passed your exam in person, you’ll be able to get your real estate license at the testing center that same day. If you completed the license exam online, then you’ll need to visit a testing center to take your license photo before receiving it. Keep in mind that there will generally be a real estate license application fee of $150 to receive your license.


Do I need a sponsoring broker in Massachusetts?

sponsoring broker

The state of Massachusetts won’t require you to work under a sponsoring broker while getting your license, but it’s still a great idea. One of the top mistakes I made when starting as a new real estate agent was not joining a team. I lacked a mentor or any kind of training program, so I had to learn everything the hard way. Fortunately, your early career doesn’t have to be as difficult as mine.

If there’s a single most important piece of advice I can give you when you’re looking for a broker, it’s to remember that your sponsoring broker should be meeting YOUR needs—not the other way around. There are plenty of brokers out there looking to recruit new agents; you may even see some trying to recruit you right out of the testing center. Take your time to research each sponsoring broker’s reputation, see if there are opportunities to grow at their brokerage, and research their education methodology before you commit.

Once you have your license, you will need to work for a brokerage, since salespersons can’t work for themselves in the state. If you decide that you want to become a broker in the future, you’ll need to work for a brokerage for a minimum of three years, take 40 additional hours of coursework, and pass your real estate broker exam.

How long does it take to get your real estate agent license?

That’s a question that depends on you, but most people are able to get their real estate license in Massachusetts in one to six months. If you’re familiar with my books, then you’ll know that my favorite word is “initiative,” and I credit it for the success that I’ve achieved in the real estate business. The best time to get started on your licensing process is right now. You can start learning as soon as you want to.

Perhaps you haven’t started your pre-licensing courses yet because you feel trapped by your current career. That can actually be a good thing! You can use feelings like that as a wall to put your back up against and drive yourself to perform better.

In my full real estate core package, Sell It Like Serhant, I cover what I call the Four W’s. These are concepts that you can use to evaluate your work ethic and motivate yourself to become a better salesperson. My Four W’s have driven me to become better at sales and build my brokerage to success. Take the course to learn how to use yours to start building your new career as soon as possible.

Is there anything new agents can do to gain an advantage?

Yes, there definitely is! I’ve designed the training program that I wish I had when I first started out. The Sell It Like Serhant: New Agent Sales Accelerator is a state-qualifying real estate course combined with my proven sales system. This is everything you’ll need to get your MA license and jumpstart a successful career in sales. The package includes expert instructor support, all the textbooks you’ll need, and even a membership to my Real Estate Core video course. I’ll teach you how I generate leads, close deals, and much more.

Getting your real estate agent license and becoming a successful salesperson isn’t something that happens overnight. My courses can help you get there at your own pace. If I can build such a successful real estate business from basically nothing, think about what you can accomplish when you choose this as your career. Schedule your pre-licensing courses, and get started on the path toward success today!


Additional Content


  • Ryan Serhant is a founder, entrepreneur, producer, public speaker, bestselling author, star of multiple TV shows, and Chief Executive Officer of SERHANT., the rapidly growing tech-forward real estate organization comprised of two core businesses: brokerage and education. Founded in 2020, SERHANT. is a content-to-commerce technology ecosystem revolutionizing the sales industry. SERHANT. is home to the first ever full-service, award-winning, in-house film studio solely dedicated to real estate content, and its digital education platform is comprised of more than 14,000 members across 110 countries.