Education FAQs

//Education FAQs
Education FAQs2018-12-17T16:27:52+00:00

Answers to your top questions about real estate education and license renewal.

Continuing education (CE) lookup

Q. Where can I find out how many CE hours I have taken?

A. The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation has an online CE Lookup. You can also use the Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center CE Lookup to find only courses taken through our school.

Designations and certifications

Q. What real estate designations and certifications are available?

A. The National Association of REALTORS® provides a wide range of designations and certifications. Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center offers designation and certification courses online and in classroom branch locations. Check out our online GRI designation program.

Ethics requirements

Q. What CE is required under NAR’s Code of Ethics? 

A. All REALTOR® members must successfully complete a 2.5 hour course in ethics, an element of NAR’s Code of Ethics, within given two-year cycles and continue to update their education in successive two-year periods thereafter. The current cycle ends December 31, 2018. Online course ETH 1530 Code of Ethics: Roadmap to Best Practices meets this requirement.

Financial aid

Q. Is financial aid available for real estate courses?

A. Yes. The Illinois Real Estate Educational Foundation awards scholarships to students of real estate and related fields of study. The foundation is supported through the voluntary contributions of those who recognize the importance of furthering academic experience and training in the real estate industry in Illinois. Illinois REALTORS® live pre-license classroom courses are also eligible for reimbursement under the GI Bill® for qualifying veterans.


Q. Who are the Illinois REALTORS®-approved instructors?

A. The following licensed instructors are approved to teach courses at Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center locations:

Annette Akey –
Jonghyun An –
Bruce Aydt –
Jenny Basantes –
Scott Bechtel –
Ryan Behrens –
Margaret Beetz – 
Amanda Bermudez –
Chris Bird –
Pam Borowski –
Kevin Botterbush –
Kris Brown –
Debbie Buckrucker –
Nick Butzirus –
Jackie Carrow –
Pat Casey –
Colleen Clavesilla –
Joseph P. Daly –
Patrick Daniels –
Marlene Dau – contact Beth Smukowski (IREM) –
Kim Daugherty –
Stacy Deemer –
Chris Diana –
Joseph Estafanous –
Lin Ewing –
Pete Fleming –
Bev George –
Linda Grahovec –
Marilyn Glazer –
Tom Guttila –
Jim Haisler –
Ron Hardgrove –
Melinda Helfer –
Jana Herdova –
Randy Hughes –
Richard Ives –
Linnea Jacobs –
Wayne Jacobsen – contact
Julea Jane Joseph –
Lisa Keating –
Kathy Kreutzberg –
Karen Lander –
Suzanne Layden – contact
Marki Lemons-Ryhal –
Justin Letheby –
Melinda Lewis –
Paula Lewis c/o Beth Smukowski –
Carrie J. Little –
Dorthy Lowe –
Lynn Madison –
Pam Maibaum –
Paul Martis –
John Masinelli –
Sue Miller –
Alice Moss –
Karel Murray –
Barb Novak –
Mike Oldenettel  –
Frank Orrico – contact
Wayne Paprocki –
Denise Pav –
Georgia Pierini –
Judy Pitek –
Anastasia Poulopoulos –
Chris Read –
Jose Rey –
Kathleen Ricketts –
Michael Rohall –
Anne Sadler –
Kate Sax –
Leah Stetter –
Harrison Strange –
Nancy Strunk –
Cathy Tardy – contact
Deb Thoman – 
Jim Titus – contact
Teri-Lynn Tomazic – contact
Pat Trombello –
Arlene M. Urban –
Angela Walker –
Mark Waldhoff –
Joel Ward –
John Warthman c/o Beth Smukowski –
Terry Watson –
Darryl S.Webb
Peter West –
Eric Westberg –
Sheryl Grider-Whitehurst –
Norm Willoughby –
Carol Wlodarchak –
Martha Wood c/o Beth Smukowski –
Sandra Workman –

License renewal

License renewal is required for Illinois real estate licensees every two years. Education requirements for renewal are based upon the date an individual was originally licensed in Illinois.  Broker license renewal and leasing agent license renewal occur in even-numbered years. Managing Broker license renewal occurs in odd-numbered years.

Q. Do the changes in the License Law affect the upcoming Managing Broker Renewal?

A. Changes in the Real Estate License Act became effective on January 1, 2018. The one change that became effective immediately was the implementation of test-free courses. Courses taken in a classroom, live interactive webinar, or through an online distance education format are eligible for test-free completion. You may want to check with the course provider before you sign up for your classes to validate whether their courses are test-free.

Q. Do I still have to take an exam at the end of my courses?

A. Courses taken in a classroom, via live interactive webinar, or through an online distance education format are eligible to eliminate the testing that normally accompanies them. Because of the added requirements placed on education providers for record keeping, it is thought that only a few education providers will be able to cease administering tests right away. Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center courses no longer require an exam.

Q. Is there a new core course available?

A.  The new core will be a 4-hour course and is not yet available. The core requirement will remain the same throughout the 2019 Managing Broker renewal. You will be required to have a minimum of 6 hours of core to include 3 Core A, 3 Core B, and 6 elective. Courses that were previously approved to expire on 6/30/18 were extended to expire on 6/30/19.

Q. If I took Broker Management CE for my first renewal and it was not required, will those hours roll over?

A. No. CE hours are only applicable in the cycle in which they are taken.

Q. How do I find out when my license expires so I know what is required for this renewal?

A. You can use IDFPR’s online license lookup or call 1-888-473-4858.

Q. How can I find out how many continuing education credit hours I have?

A. Check IDFPR’s CE Lookup page. You can also look up only the courses taken and passed through the Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center on our CE Lookup page.

Q. What should I do if my records are not showing up on IDFPR’s website?

A. Your best option would be to check with your course providers directly. Your course provider is responsible for sending your records to IDFPR. Keep in mind it does not happen instantly and IDFPR may not have updated its site.

Q. What if I have too many core CE hours and not enough elective hours?

Your Core hours will count toward Elective CE hours. However, Elective hours do not count toward your Core requirement. Keep in mind that credit hours for the same course cannot be repeated within the same cycle.

Q. I can’t find certificates for all my courses. Can I send in my renewal without them?

A. Yes. Do NOT mail your certificates to IDFPR with your renewal form. The certificates are for your records only. You may need them in the event of an audit, so keep them in your files.

Q. Why can’t I find my CE hours on your website?

A. If you took your CE through a provider other than the Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center, your CE will not be reflected in our CE Lookup. You will need to contact the other school directly for your records.

Q. When does the IDFPR renewal site open?

A.  The IDFPR renewal site is open for the broker renewal. You should receive an email from IDFPR with your unique pin number. If you did not get one you can also access your renewal with your social security number and date of birth.

Q. How do I submit my license renewal?

Renew online with a credit card or print a paper copy and mail to:

Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
PO Box 7086
320 West Washington Street
Springfield IL 62791

Q. What are the fees for license renewal?

A. The broker renewal fee is $150. If you renew after April 30, 2018, there is an additional $50 late payment penalty fee.

Q. Can I still practice real estate if I have not completed all the renewal requirements, completed the renewal application and paid the fee to IDFPR?

A. No. Contact the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to learn your options: 1-800-560-6420 or email

Q. I have completed my renewal requirements, paid the fee and submitted the renewal application by the deadline, but I have not received my renewed license? May I still practice now?

A. Yes, but make sure you keep records of all your CE, a copy of the renewal application, and copies of your method of payment in case of an IDFPR audit. These may be needed to prove your timely renewal. Also, after you renew your license online, it will take up to one week for the changes to appear on the IDFPR website. You will then be able to print your renewed license.

Q. I’m a licensed attorney in good standing in Illinois. What do I need to do to renew as a broker?

A. You will be required to complete the renewal forms and pay the license renewal fees required by IDFPR. You are EXEMPT from all continuing education requirements. Note: You must indicate full CE compliance on the renewal form.

Q. If my license is in a “holding company” do I still need CE?

A. Yes. Your “holding company” is your sponsoring broker, so you hold an active sponsored real estate license. Thus, you are subject to all CE and renewal requirements.

Q. I’m currently a managing broker, but I want to revert to a broker license. Can I do that during the broker renewal cycle?

A. Yes. A managing broker may transfer to a broker license only if the managing broker license is currently in active status. For more information, see IDFPR’s transfer application.

Q. I haven’t completed my renewal requirements yet. Can I still renew my license?

A. If you renew without completing the required CE, you could face a penalty of up to $75 per 3 hour course, or $25 per credit hour that you were deficient (e.g., deficient 3 hours, $75 penalty).

Q. Where can I find more information about paperless licensing?

A. Review IDFPR’s Paperless Licensing Frequently Asked Questions.

 Pre-License Process (getting a license)

Q. How long does it take to become a real estate broker?

A. The time it takes to become a real estate broker varies. Factors include the type of classes you take, how long you choose to study the material, how soon you apply for your state license, whether you pass your exams on the your first try and other factors.

Q.  How many courses do I have to take?

A. You must complete 90 hours of pre-license coursework consisting of two courses: a 75-hour Broker Pre-license Topics course and a 15-hour Broker Pre-license Applied Real Estate Principles course.

Q. What is the difficulty level of real estate pre-license courses?  

Real estate pre-license courses are equivalent to college-level study. Your coursework will consist of large amounts of reading, learning key terms and concepts and answering multiple-choice questions.

Q. What time limits do I need to observe?

A. The 75-hour course expires 180 days from the date of purchase. A single 90-day extension may be purchased if needed. Pre-license course transcripts (issued when you complete each pre-license courses) are valid for four years. If you do not take the licensing exam within four years of receiving the transcript for your pre-license courses, you will be required to retake the courses before you can apply to take the licenisng exam.

Because the 15-hour course builds upon content learned in the 75-hour course, it is strongly suggested that you take the 75-hour course before the 15-hour course.

Q. How do I take the State & National licensing exam?
A. You will be contacted by the exam administrator, PSI/AMP when you are eligible to sit for the exam.  Call 1-913-895-4600 or go to for licensing exam registraiton.

Q. How long does it take to get licensing exam results?
A. Results are given immediately at the testing center. Subsequent paperwork will be given at the same time or come via email. It can take 6-8 weeks to receive your license number from IDFPR.

Q. What are the requirements for obtaining my Real Estate License in Illinois

A. Broker License: To qualify for an Illinois Real Estate Broker License in the State of Illinois you must be at least 21 years old, a high school graduate or equivalent (G.E.D.), successfully complete the required coursework and pass the state licensing exam. Effective May 1, 2011 the Broker license category replaced the former Salesperson license category.

The new Broker license has the same privileges of the previous Salesperson license category, but requires additional education to include 90 hours of pre-license education, 15 of which must be interactive (classroom or webinar) and 30 hours of post-license education. The 90 hours would include a 75-hour Broker Pre-license Topics course and a 15-hour Broker Pre-license Applied Real Estate Principles Interactive course.

Managing Broker License: All new licensees who require managerial privileges are required to earn a Managing Broker license. To qualify for an Illinois Real Estate Managing Broker’s license in the State of Illinois you must be at least 21 years old, have an active valid Illinois real estate broker license, had an active real estate license for two (2) of the past three (3) years, successfully complete the required coursework and pass the state licensing exam. This new category of license for brokers who will manage and sponsor themselves and/or other licensees changed from Broker to Managing Broker.

The Managing Broker license is only available to applicants who held a real estate salesperson  or broker license for two out of the last three years. If you have a broker license and meet the two out of three year requirement, it is assumed you have completed the 120 Broker pre-license  requirement and you will only be required to take an additional 45 hours to include a 30-hour course, Managing Broker pre-license Topics and a 15-hour Managing Broker pre-license Applied Management and Supervision Interactive course.

Applicants who have never held a license will first have to  complete the 90 hour Broker license requirement and the 30 hours of post license and follow with the 45-hour Managing  Broker requirement. You would not be able to apply for your Managing Broker license until you have met the two out of three year requirement.

Leasing Agent License: In order to obtain a Leasing Agent license in the State of Illinois you must be at least 18 years old, a high school graduate or equivalent (G.E.D.), successfully complete a 15-hour Leasing Agent course at a real estate school approved by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, pass the state licensing exam.

Pre-License or Continuing Education Instructor License: In order to become a pre-license instructor or continuing education instructor, you would need to apply through the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. They have downloadable forms on their website that list the criteria needed to be able to be certified. Click on Real Estate Professions and then forms. The pre-license instructor license does require taking an exam. Exam information may be found through the Applied Measure Professional’s Web site at Continuing education instructors now have to complete an approved instructor training prior to making application with IDFPR. Visit the Illinois REALTORS® Store for Instructor pre-license coursework.

Proctored exams

Q. How do I get an exam proctored at a proctor location?

A. Choose a proctor site from this list of approved proctor locations and send an email to to tell us which proctor location you have chosen. Contact the proctor location to schedule the date and time for your exam. Go to the proctor location on the scheduled date and time to take the exam.

Q. How long will it take to get my exam results?

A. Once we receive your exam from the proctor location, it will be processed within 24-48 business hours.

Q. How do I find my exam results?

A. Pre-License students will have their exam results emailed to them. CE students can look up their successful course completions using our CE Lookup (only for courses taken through the Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center).

Q. Why are my exam results not showing up?

A. Only CE courses that were taken through the Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center will be listed in our CE Lookup. For courses taken through another school, go to IDFPR’s CE Lookup. Pre-License students will receive their exam results via email.


Q. What states share license reciprocity with Illinois?

A. Illinois currently has reciprocity with the states listed below. If you hold a real estate license in an Illinois reciprocal state, no classroom or coursework is required. The only requirement will be for you to take the state specific portion of the licensing exam (40 questions). A general overview of the state-specific 40 questions may be found in the Candidate Handbook on the AMP website.

Department of Regulatory Agencies
(broker license)

Department of Consumer Protection
(salesperson/broker license)

Dept of Business & Professional Regulation
(associate/broker license)

Real Estate Commission
(salesperson/associate broker/broker license)

Real Estate Commission
(Broker reciprocity only) (broker/managing broker)

Real Estate Commission

Real Estate Commission
Download request form (pdf)
(broker associate/responsible broker)

Dept. of Safety & Professional Services
608-266-2112 or

Department of Financial & Professional Regulation
800-560-6420 or
(broker/managing broker)

Q. If I hold a license in a reciprocal state, what is required to obtain my real estate license in Illinois?

A. If you hold a real estate license in an Illinois reciprocal state, no classroom or coursework is required. The only requirement will be for you to take the state specific portion of the licensing exam (40 questions). A general overview of the state-specific 40 questions may be found in the Candidate Handbook on the AMP website.

Q. How do I  apply for licensure in Illinois on the basis of reciprocity:

A. These are the steps to apply for licensure in Illinois on the basis of reciprocity:

  1. You must be actively licensed by examination in the state from which you are applying.
  2. Illinois must have a written reciprocal agreement with the state in which you are currently licensed by examination.
  3. You must take and pass the Illinois portion of the licensure examination.
  4. Your sponsor must have an active broker or managing broker license in Illinois. A managing broker can self-sponsor.*
  5. For Managing Broker Applicants only: your broker license must have been in an active status during the immediately preceding two years.*
    *Indiana and Illinois only share BROKER reciprocity, not Managing Broker.

Illinois REALTORS® suggests using the Illinois REcampus QBank v2.0 or to prepare for this exam. Some students also benefit from purchasing the Modern Real Estate Practice in Illinois textbook or e-book.

To register as a candidate for the real estate exam, you will need to contact PSI/AMP (Applied Measurement Professionals, Inc) directly to schedule. There are also exam prep products on AMP’s site, you can find them by following this link.

Once you have taken and passed the exam and are ready to fill out the Illinois Reciprocity Application. You will also need to request your Certified Licensure History from the state(s) in which you hold a real estate license. Refer to the regulatory agency for your state. We advise you contact the licensing agency in your state immediately to obtain this documentation.

State and national real estate licensing exam

Q. How do I register for the state and national real estate licensing exam?

A. Review the Candidate Handbook and register for the exam with psi/Applied Measurement Professionals.


Q. What are the system requirements for Illinois REALTORS® webinars?

A. You must use a desktop computer or laptop. Our webinars will not perform properly on Notebooks, iPads and smartphones. To ensure a better experience with the D2L network, we recommend the following, regardless of which operating system you are using:

  • Memory (RAM): 2GB or more
  • Wireless Card: 802.11b/g/n or 802.11ac
  • Ethernet Card: 10/100 capable

Our wireless network uses a network access management software called SafeConnect. This helps to ensure our student computers are meeting some recommended standards to prevent virus outbreaks. SafeConnect supports the following Operating Systems:

  • Windows Vista (supported but not recommended)
  • Windows 7
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 8.1
  • Windows 10
  • Mac OS X 10.8
  • Mac OS X 10.9
  • Mac OS X 10.10

Any beta versions of operating systems are not supported (example: Windows Technical Preview or Mac OS X Public Beta). As operating systems are updated, SafeConnect is updated to support them. Occasionally, there will be a delay between operating system updates and SafeConnect Support. Although devices running iOS, Android, Chrome OS, and Windows RT are recognized on the network and will work, the D2L Online’s lockdown browser will not work on the operating system.

Q. How do I register for the webinar?  

A. Register for the webinar by selecting a date during your purchase in the Illinois REALTORS Store. Registration for a webinar will close as early as 4 pm on the preceding BUSINESS day. Once registration is closed we do NOT have the ability to add registrants. You will receive reminders the week before the webinar.

Q.  How do I cancel my webinar?

A. Contact an Education Specialist at with your request to cancel or move to another date.

Q.  If I have not completed my 75-hour Broker Pre-license Course, should I take the 15-Hour Pre-License Interactive Webinar?

A. It is highly recommended that you are 100% complete with your 75-hour program prior to taking the 15-hour interactive course.
The completion of the 75-hour exam is NOT required before you register for the 15-hour webinar.

Q.  How do I communicate with the instructor?

A. You will interact with your instructor by using the chat messaging feature found in the upper right hand corner of your screen. You are able to privately message the instructor as well.

Q. Do I need a microphone for the webinar?

A. No. You will interact with your instructor by using the chat messaging feature found in the upper right hand corner of your screen. You are able to privately message the instructor as well.

 Q.  How do I log into a webinar?

A. Log into your D2L account and go to your “15-hour Interactive Course” in the “My Courses” section. Scroll to the bottom of the page and follow the “Download Blackboard Collaborate Launcher” link. You must download this program prior to webinar day.

Q.   Is attendance taken for this webinar?

A. Yes, attendance will be taken several times throughout the webinar to insure students are logged in. You are required to attend the entire webinar.

Q.  Do we receive any materials for the webinar?  

A. Yes, your course materials are inside the D2L course. Some materials may be in a .pdf format and/or videos that will have direct links to YouTube. The course materials will “unlock” five days prior to the webinar. All course materials are downloadable.

Q.  Do I have to have special equipment on my computer for this webinar?

A.  The way you will communicate is through the “chat” feature of the D2L program. You will need speakers to hear the webinar. Most computers have these internally in the computer. You do not need a camera or microphone for the actual webinar but you will need them to take the final exam for the course.  You will be able to see the instructor but he/she will not be able to see you.
Notebooks, iPads and smart phones CANNOT be used for this webinar.

 Q. What time does the webinar start?

A. Promptly at 9:00am. Please log-in by 8:45 am for a sound check and for any troubleshooting you may need. Attendance will be taken at the start and throughout the webinar when the instructor returns for a break. 15-hour webinars conclude between 4-4:30 pm.

Q.  Do we get breaks throughout the webinar?

A. Yes, courses are approved on 50-minute hours, so if the instructor does not take a one hour lunch and two 15-minute breaks, the course could end much earlier than the time that is posted. The instructor will announce what time you will break for lunch and it may be anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour.

Q.  Do I have to take an exam with this webinar?

A. No, Interactive courses do not require a final exam. Participants take quizzes throughout the live sessions showing proficiency in the material before it can be completed.

Q. Who do I contact if I’m having problems accessing my course?

A. Contact an Education Specialist at or 217-529-2600.  For EIU tech support call 217-581-4357.

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We are happy to answer your questions!

Chat with us online, call us at (800) 523-5077, or email
Mon.-Fri., 9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.