Trading Services (Sales) Licensing
This step-by-step licensing guide gives you an overview of the education and training required to become licensed to conduct trading services in BC.
Make sure you also read about Real Estate as a Career, which gives you important information about
- the real estate industry,
- the Council’s licensing and education requirements,
- an outline of anticipated expenses and budget items.
Step-by-Step Licensing Guide
Before registering in the licensing course or applying to the Council for licensing, carefully review the following information to make sure you have considered all the requirements for becoming licensed in BC.
- Do You Meet the Good Reputation Guidelines?
Make sure you are familiar with the Council’s Good Reputation Guidelines. If you are concerned about whether you satisfy these requirements, you may submit an Application for Pre-Screening form to the Council before registering in the Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course. The Council will consider your pre-screening application and determine whether you are eligible for licensing in BC (you will still be required to pass the licensing course and examination, and successfully complete the Applied Practice Course).
All applicants must submit an original criminal record check to the Council along with their licence application. (See Step 3 below for details). Please read all information regarding the criminal record check to ensure you comply with the specific requirements for licensing with the Real Estate Council.
- Will You Satisfy the Language Proficiency Requirement?
Before you can register to write the licensing exam, you must demonstrate that you meet the minimum English language requirements.
Please take steps to ensure that you satisfy these requirements before registering in the licensing course. Find out more about the Language Proficiency Requirement.
- Do you satisfy the Council’s employment criteria?
To apply for licensing in British Columbia you must satisfy one of the following employment criteria proving that you are eligible to work in Canada:
- be a Canadian citizen
- be of Permanent Resident status
- hold a valid work permit/visa
- be of Landed Immigrant status
Note: work permit/visa must not have any restrictions that would preclude you from engaging in real estate activity/employment.
The Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course is offered by the University of British Columbia, Sauder School of Business (Real Estate Division). You can register at any time during the year for this self-paced blended learning course. For course information and to register online, please visit the UBC Real Estate Division’s Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course webpage.
You must complete all course assignments within one year of registering. The course assignments take a minimum of 10 weeks to complete.
Effective January 1, 2017, students must obtain a minimum grade of 70% in order to pass the licensing examination.
If you feel that you have previous education or experience that may exempt you from either the Licensing Course or Examination, please review the Council’s Education and Licensing FAQ and/or the Education Waivers and Guidelines.
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT EXTERNAL TUTORS/LECTURES
Students are encouraged to take advantage of the tutorial assistance and lectures provided with their Trading Services Licensing Course rather than spending additional money on external tutors/lectures.
The Real Estate Council and UBC Real Estate Division are not affiliated with any external tutorial classes. These services are not monitored and the Real Estate Council and UBC Real Estate Division cannot be responsible for any information provided by these individuals or companies.
External tutorial companies regularly make false claims, such as “only 30% of students pass the exam” or “we’ll guarantee that you will pass the exam” so that you will spend your money with them. Remember, there are no guarantees and the UBC Real Estate Division works with all students to provide every opportunity for success.
Make sure you understand all the information that is required as part of the licensing application: download it here.
Begin talking to real estate brokerages, to find the brokerage that is the right fit for you, and to make arrangements to join the brokerage when you are licenced. Your licence application must be signed by the managing broker of a real estate brokerage in BC that is prepared to engage you.
You must submit an original criminal record check completed within the previous 90 days along with your licence application to the Council. In order to avoid unnecessary delays in licensing you are encouraged to obtain a criminal record check before you begin the Applied Practice Course. Find more information on the criminal record check requirements here.
Mail or courier your criminal record check, along with your completed licence application, all other required documents, and the appropriate fee, to the Council office once you have started the Applied Practice Course (see Step 6 for further details on the required elements of the licensing application).
You may choose to take either the Residential or Commercial version of the Applied Practice Course delivered by the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA). It is a blended course, consisting of four components delivered online and in the classroom. The Applied Practice Course builds on the technical knowledge provided in the Real Estate Licensing Course, giving you opportunities to practice the skills you’ll need most as a real estate professional.
You must complete the required pre-licensing components of the course before your licence can be issued. You will have up to six months to complete the final components of the course while working at your brokerage. Visit the BCREA website for full information and to register in the Applied Practice Course.
You must complete all components of the Applied Practice Course within the prescribed time limits or your licence will be terminated.
As soon as you have started the Applied Practice Course, mail or courier your completed licence application, along with all required documents and the appropriate fee, to the Council.
Please make sure your application includes ALL of the following:
- An original criminal record check from your local police agency. This must be submitted along with your licence application to the Council. Click here for detailed information.
- A completed Application for Representative, Associate or Managing Broker Licence form.
- The appropriate licensing fee. Click here for information about licensing fees.
Mail or courier your completed application, criminal record check, and payment to: Real Estate Council of British Columbia, 900-750 West Pender Street | Vancouver, BC Canada | V6C 2T8
Please send your application, including all original documents (no photocopies or scans) in one package by mail or courier. Do not email or fax your application.
Once you have received your licence, you must complete all remaining components of the Applied Practice Course within six months.
If you do not complete the entire Applied Practice Course, your licence will be terminated.
One Year Time Limit: You must apply for licensing within one year of the date on which you successfully completed the licensing examination. If more than one year has elapsed, you will be required to re-write the examination and/or re-complete the Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course. No exceptions.
Relicensing Education Program: Once licensed, you will be required to complete a continuing education course during each two-year licence period. This Relicensing Education Program (REP) requirement is a condition of continued licensing. For further information, please see the REP page.
Budget: Before you make the commitment to becoming licensed, you may wish to consider some of the costs involved, and develop a budget to ensure you will be able to meet them.
Your expenses will include, but are not limited to:
- Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course Fee.
- Language Proficiency Index examination (if required) – $109 + tax in BC, $135 + tax outside of BC and 160 + tax in Hong Kong.
- Licensing fees (includes 2-year licensing fee, Errors & Omissions Insurance, Superintendent of Real Estate assessment and Compensation Fund Corporation assessment)
- Residential or Commercial Trading Services Applied Practice Course Fee.
- Criminal record check – costs vary depending on police agency.
- Real Estate Board fees – Fees vary from board to board.
- Additional costs to consider: brokerage desk fees, transaction fees, business cards, signs, advertising, smart phone, computer, printer, scanner, website, internet access, car lease and business car insurance, business clothing, etc.
- You should also take into account the cost as well as the time needed to establish a practice and to build up an income to meet your personal requirements. Make sure you have sufficient capital available to support yourself if your personal goals are not met as soon as you would like.