Congratulations on your decision to take the next step in your real estate career. Outlined below is a list of things you will need to do in order to get your Iowa Real Estate Broker license.

Have a question? We are always happy to help; email or call 800-532-1515 option 1.

Meet Licensing Requirements

  • When you apply for a broker's license you must have been a licensed active salesperson for 24 months.
  • You must complete 72 hours of prescribed broker classes (see below for the nine required pre-broker classes). You can take the courses from any accredited school or any combination of accredited schools.
  • You can take the 72 hours (9 courses) in any order.
  • Each course certificate is valid for 24 months from the date of completion. Each certificate expires individually. You must complete all 9 courses and pass the examination before the expiration of the first certificate.
  • If a certificate expires you must repeat the course to receive a valid certificate.
  • You must present all 9 valid certificates to the testing center the day of your exam.
  • You have until the last working day of the sixth month following the date you pass the examination to apply for your broker license.
  • A state and federal criminal background check is required for new broker applicants. See the information below for more details.

Licensing questions should be directed to the Iowa Real Estate Commission at 515-725-9022 x8. For education questions or to register for a course contact the Iowa Association of REALTORS® Education Department at 800-532-1515 option 1 or register online.

Complete a Background Check

Important - a completed background check is only valid for 210 days, so you should plan your education and test schedule accordingly. Background checks can take up to 8-10 weeks to be completed.

Steps to complete the background check

  1. Request a fingerprint packet by sending a written request with your name and address to or fax your request to 515-725-9032. You MUST use the Iowa Real Estate Commission's fingerprint card. No other fingerprint card from any other institution will be accepted.
  2. Send the completed fingerprint card, signed waiver, and check or money order for $51 to the Iowa Real Estate Commission at 200 E. Grand Suite 350 Des Moines, IA 50309. Make checks payable to the Iowa Real Estate Commission. Please allow 8 to 10 weeks for the fingerprint card to be processed.
  3. Once the background check as been completed by the FBI, the report is only valid for 210 days. See the Frequently Asked Questions document for more information regarding the background check process.
  4. You do not need to wait for your background check to be approved to send in your license application.
  5. An applicant for a real estate broker license who has been convicted of forgery, embezzlement, obtaining money under false pretenses, theft, extortion, conspiracy to defraud, or another similar offense, or of any crime involving moral turpitude, in a court of competent jurisdiction in this state or in any other state, jurisdiction, territory, or district of the United States, or in any foreign jurisdiction, may be denied a license by the commission on the grounds of the conviction. "Conviction" is defined in Iowa Code section 543B.15(3) and rule 193E—2.1(543B)
  6. To see if your background check has been approved visit the IREC Frequently Asked Questions page and click on the list of completed backgrounds.

Complete the Nine Required Pre-Broker Classes

No other courses substitute for these courses. The courses may be taken in any order. These courses must be taken in the classroom.

  • Real Estate Office Organization
  • Real Estate Office Administration
  • Principles of Appraising and Market Analysis
  • Real Estate Trust Accounts
  • Contract Law/Writing
  • Real Estate Law & Agency Law
  • Real Estate Finance
  • State & Federal Laws Affecting Real Estate or GRI 105: Federal & Iowa Laws
  • Human Resources Management

View the Pre-Broker class schedule

Take the Broker Exam

Testing for the Broker Exam is administered by PSI Examination Services at locations across the state.

About the Exam 

Section # of Questions Passing Score Time Allowed
National 80 60 120 minutes
State 40 30 60 minutes
Combined Total 120 90 180 minutes

More information on the exam

How to Register for the Exam

  • Register by phone: 800-733-9267 from 7:30am - 8:00pm Central Time
  • Register online at

Apply for your Broker License

After you have passed the examination, you MUST apply for your real estate broker's license not later than the last business day of the sixth month following the qualifying examination test date.

Filing deadlines are ABSOLUTE.

You will need to attach the following items to your license application:

  1. A license fee of $170
  2. A pass notice from the examination service
  3. Proof of completing 72 hours of education within 24 months prior to taking the examination
  4. Your Iowa salesperson license, or an explanation if your license has been held inactive or if you do not have an Iowa salesperson license
  5. Proof of E&O Insurance

Tips for completing your application:

  • You must complete the "Nonresident Consent" section of the application if you reside outside of Iowa
  • You must provide the signature notarized on the license application form
  • If your application is for a proprietor, partner, or officer and you intend to accept earnest monies, you must submit a "Consent to Examine and Audit Trust Account" form. If not, you must submit a "Trust Account Status Affidavit". These forms can be obtained from the Iowa Real Estate Commission or at