How to get a real estate license anywhere in Australia

LaunchCategory
20 min read
Leeha Debnam

Are you thinking about getting your real estate license?

Whether you’ve been in the industry for a long time or are looking for a fresh start, a real estate agent license can help you take your career to the next level. It’s the difference between selling real estate on behalf of a broker or opening your own agency and being in control of your destiny.

So, where do you start? Right here.

Editor's note:  Protect your online brand by registering a domain name with your own name in it — for example SuzanneMitchell.com.au. Don't have an ABN? Use the new, shorter option — SuzanneMitchell.au.

Find out what’s required in your area

To save you time, we’ve pulled together the requirements for every state and territory in Australia, including links to online applications. Click on your state or territory to go directly to that section.

New South Wales

Queensland

South Australia

Tasmania

Victoria

Western Australia

Northern Territory

Australian Capital Territory

If you’ve been dreaming of a career in real estate, make a start now.

How to get your real estate agent license in Australia

You’ll need to have specific qualifications, experience and be a suitable person of good character to hold a license. The steps involved in becoming a real estate agent include:

  1. Learn the age and education requirements for your state or territory
  2. Find an approved real estate school or certification course
  3. Gain at least a year’s worth of full-time work experience in the real estate industry
  4. Obtain the necessary insurance(s) for your state or territory
  5. Apply for your real estate agent license
  6. Complete the necessary paperwork
  7. Find work as a real estate agent
Real Estate License Man Holding Smartphone

The requirements to get your real estate license in Australia vary across states and territories. Let’s explore each state and territory in more depth. 

Related: How to register a business in Australia

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New South Wales requirements

In NSW, you’ll need to meet specific eligibility criteria, including being fit and proper to hold a license. You must have:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have paid the relevant contribution to the Property Services Compensation Fund
  • Gain an approved real estate licence qualification such as the Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice (CPP41419) 
  • Have at least 12 months full-time work experience in the industry 
  • Base your principal place of work in NSW or within 50km of the NSW border

The good news is, you can complete the course online or on-campus and choose either full-time or part-time. Check out these institutions for more information:

How to apply for a New South Wales real estate license 

There are two classes of licence for the New South Wales real estate licence — class 1 and class 2.  

When applying for the class 2 licence, you'll need to have: 

  • A certification of registration  
  • At least 12 months of hands-on experience under the watchful eye of a licensee 

This step up in your career gives you the green light to act as a licensee in charge and start your own real estate business as a sole trader.  

Apply online and upload the necessary documents, including proof of identity, copies of your qualifications and your evidence of work experience logbook. 

The average license application assessment is 30 days.

 

Acceptable forms of identification include your driver’s license or Australian passport. Additionally, you’ll need evidence of your professional indemnity insurance and qualifications.

Apply for a NSW real estate license

As in most states and territories, you'll have continuing professional development (CPD) requirements in NSW. 

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Queensland requirements

Like NSW, there are eligibility criteria and training requirements to apply for your real estate license in Queensland.

The Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice (CPP41419) and the Diploma of Property (Agency Management) (CPP51122) are industry-recognised training packages. These are required to apply for a real estate licence in Queensland.  

Woman talking on the phone

There are 19 units that you must have completed or been assessed as competent as part of the training. These include:

  • Prepare for professional practice in real estate 
  • Access and interpret ethical practice in real estate 
  • Access and interpret legislation in real estate 
  • Prepare to work with real estate trust accounts 
  • Appraise property for sale or lease 
  • Market property 
  • Manage operational finances in the property industry 

The course can be completed at institutions like REIQ or Property Training Australia.

How to apply for a Queensland real estate license 

You must have a valid real estate licence to work as a real estate agent in Queensland. You must be 18 years or older and have passed the required training courses to be eligible.  

The average processing time is 4-6 weeks.

 

The course can be completed at institutions like REIQ or Property Training Australia. 

When you're ready, apply through the Queensland Government website by completing an individual's licence application, uploading proof of identity documents/qualifications and paying the required fees. You'll also find the complete list of suitability requirements on the website.  

The form must be lodged either by mail to the Office of Fair Trading (the address is on the application form) or in person at a Queensland Government Service Office.

Don’t forget, you’ll need formal identification and proof of your qualifications.

Apply for a QLD real estate license 

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South Australia requirements

In South Australia, real estate agents who want to run an agency are also referred to as Land Agents.

There are 16 different qualification pathways that can help you apply for your real estate licence in South Australia. These include: 

  • Successful completion of 36 units of competency from the Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice (CPP41419) or the CPP51119 or CPP51122 — Diploma of Property (Agency Management), or 
  • A degree in law and admission or entitlement to admission to practice law in South Australia, and successful completion of 10 units of competency from the previously mentioned Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice, or 
  • Be the holder of a current South Australian Sales Representative Registration, and successfully complete 18 units of competency from the Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice or the Diploma of Property (Agency Management)

Visit the South Australian Government website to view the complete list of real estate licence qualifications. 

If you choose to complete CPP50307 Diploma of Property Services (Agency Management), you'll need a total of 24 units, including: 

  • Developing a strategic business plan
  • Managing people performance
  • Marketing your agency
  • Managing budgets and financial plans
Real Estate License Woman on Laptop

How to apply for a South Australia real estate license 

For the South Australia real estate licence, you must complete one of the required real estate/land agent qualification courses or options listed on the South Australian Government website.

Once completed, you can apply for your license by lodging your application to the South Australia Consumer and Business Services. 

You can take these courses through the Real Estate Training Academy.

Or contact the Real Estate Institute of South Australia for more information.

As in most other states, you’ll need a national police certificate and must meet financial probity requirements.

Applying for your real estate agent license in South Australia is as easy as filling out an online application (available via link, below) and attaching the required documents.

Apply for an SA real estate license 

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Tasmania requirements

The Tasmanian eligibility requirements for a real estate agent license state that you must:

  • Hold a CPP50307 Diploma of Property Services (Agency Management)
  • Have had two years full-time experience as a property manager or property representative during the previous five years before your application
  • Be considered by the Property Agents Board of Tasmania to be a fit and proper person of good reputation, both generally and financially 
  • Pay the relevant application fees
  • Be prepared to undergo continuing education

You can complete the course through the Real Estate Institute of Tasmania.

How to apply for a Tasmania real estate license

For the Tasmania real estate licence, you must complete the CPP51122 Diploma of Property (Agency Management). There are 12 competency units comprising seven core units and five elective units.  

Next, you’ll need to lodge your application through the Property Agents Board of Tasmania. Submit your National Police Record Check from Tasmania Police and details of your knowledge/experience/employment. 

The real estate license applications are managed by the Property Agents Board of Tasmania. When you lodge your application, you’ll also supply evidence of your qualifications and details of your professional indemnity insurance.

Costs for a TAS real estate license 

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Victoria requirements

Real estate licenses in Victoria are handled by Consumer Affairs Victoria. In terms of eligibility, you must be at least 18 years of age and have:

  • At least 12 months full-time experience as an agent's representative in Victoria at any time during the last three years immediately before applying for a licence
  • Completed the required educational training courses 
  • Paid the required application fee at the time of lodgement

How to apply for a Victoria real estate license 

For the Victoria real estate licence, you must have completed the following courses within the last five years: 

  • Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice (CPP41419) 18 units 
  • Diploma of Property (agency management) 12 units

Alternatively, you may apply if you completed 24 prescribed units of the Certificate IV in Property Services (Real Estate) on or before 30 September 2021, or have previously completed available prescribed courses such as the Certificate IV in Property (Real Estate Agency Practice) or the Certificate IV in Business (Estate Agency Practice).  

Apply through the myCAV system with the Victorian Government’s Consumer Affairs Department with the relevant documents. 

Note that agents who completed the previous requirement (CPP40307 Certificate IV in Property Services Real Estate) are exempt from having to complete this new course.

You can complete the course through the Real Estate Institute of Victoria (REIV) or other providers like Box Hill Institute.

To apply for your real estate agent license online (available via link, below), you’ll need to consent to a national criminal history and other records check, supply certified copies of your identification documents and a copy of your Victorian academic qualifications.

Apply for a VIC real estate license 

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Western Australia requirements

If you’re in Western Australia and you’re looking to operate as a real estate agent, you’ll need a real estate license and a current triennial certificate.

The triennial certificate is given at the time your license is granted and renewed every three years.

To be eligible to apply for a real estate license in Western Australia, you’ll need to show that you have sufficient financial resources to carry on the business as an agent. This means undergoing a credit history check and completing a confidential statement of assets and liabilities.

Also, you must have completed one of the following courses: 

  • CPP51122 Diploma of Property (Agency Management) current course 
  • CPP51119 Diploma of Property (Agency Management) 
  • CPP50307 Diploma of Property Services (Agency Management) 
  • One of the prescribed qualifications from Curtin University of Technology such as the Bachelor of Commerce (Property and Marketing) or Bachelor of Commerce (Property and Finance)

Applicants must also have at least two years of continuous full-time experience in the real estate industry immediately before applying for the real estate agent licence. 

How to apply for a Western Australia real estate license 

For the Western Australia real estate licence, you must complete one of the abovementioned qualifications, such as the Diploma of Property Services (Agency Management) CPP50307.  

You'll also need to supply a current resume and a transaction listing to demonstrate that you've been directly involved in negotiating the end-to-end transactions.  

Overhead vide of woman working at a white desk
Photo: Avel at Unsplash

Lodge your application through the post or in person to the Department of Energy, Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety. 

The application for a real estate license is available from the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety.

Once you complete the form and provide all your supporting documents (including the relevant police check/s, two business references, and evidence of your practical experience and qualifications, it can be lodged by post or in person at the Department's Cannington office (or a regional office). 

Costs of a WA real estate license 

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Northern Territory requirements

Before you apply for a real estate licence in the Northern Territory, you must get a police history check, be 18 years or older, have completed the required training and have the required qualifications and experience.  

To be qualified as a real estate agent in the Northern Territory, you must complete: 

  • CPP51122 Diploma of Property (Agency Management) 
  • CPP41419 Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice or

You’ll also need a Northern Territory unrestricted registration as an agent's representative.  

Real estate licenses are granted for either one, three or five years.

You can apply at Licensing NT Online. If you’re not a fan of online applications, you can also apply by:

  • Mail
  • Email
  • Fax
  • In person

How to apply for a Northern Territory real estate license 

For the Northern Territory real estate licence, you need to have successfully completed the training from the Diploma of Property (Agency Management) (CPP51122) and Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice (CPP41419. As part of your application, must supply a referee character statement from an authorised person.  

Submit your application, along with your documents, to the Northern Territory Government. Your application can be submitted by mail, email, fax, or in person. 

Download the application form from nt.gov.au or grab a form at your nearest Territory Business Centre.

Costs of a NT real estate license 

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Australian Capital Territory requirements

Real Estate License Agent Holding House Key

Last but not least, we’ve arrived at the ACT. Before granting your real estate licence in the ACT, Access Canberra will notify the public of your application.  

To be eligible for a licence, you must be at least 18 years old, have the required qualifications, and not be disqualified from holding a licence. You'll also need a police certificate issued by the Australian Federal Police. 

The type of qualifications required depends on the licence you're applying for (Class 1 or Class 2).  

  • The class 2 Real Estate Licence requires Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice (CPP41419), including the completion of prescribed VET course units of competency. You must also have at least 12 months continuous or cumulative experience in the last five years before applying for a real estate licence as a registered assistance real estate agent or a registered real estate salesperson (or both).  
  • The class 1 Real Estate Licence in the ACT requires CPP51122 or CPP51119 Diploma of Property (Agency Management) plus at least 24 months of experience in the last five years before applying as a licensed property agent or a licensed business agent, real estate agent or stock and station agent.   

You can view the complete list of qualifications and experience required for licences on the ACT Government website. 

How to apply for an ACT real estate license 

You must complete Certificate IV in Real Estate Practice for the Australian Capital Territory class 2 real estate licence (CPP41419). A class 1 licence requires CPP51122 or CPP51119 Diploma of Property (Agency Management). 

Access Canberra will notify the public of your intent to apply on the ACT Open Government Website 

Your application must contain evidence of your qualifications, proof of identity and a police certificate. Licences are granted for one or three years; if you choose the latter, you can pay either all at once or via annual instalments.  

Apply for an ACT real estate license 

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Do you have to have a real estate license? 

You don’t need a real estate license if you’re selling or buying your own property. However, you need to have a real estate license if you:

  • Work as an individual seller
  • Own a real estate business
  • Work for an agency

Real estate agent vs. real estate broker 

A real estate agent is a licensed professional who works for a firm or broker. They help customers buy, sell or rent real estate. 

A real estate broker is a real estate agent who has undergone additional training or licensing. This allows them to hire external real estate agents to work for their brokerage.

All real estate brokers are real estate agents.

Additionally, real estate agents work for a real estate brokerage, and cannot work alone. 

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Go get your real estate agent license

A real estate license can let you open your own agency and be in control of your career. Be sure to thoroughly investigate the eligibility, qualification and experience requirements that you’ll need to be granted a real estate license in your state or territory.

If you have questions, contact the Real Estate Institute in your state or territory to get the right advice.

Quentin Aisbett contributed to this article.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the biggest considerations to becoming a real estate agent?

Real estate is an attractive career for many people, but it is clearly not for everyone.

One of the biggest considerations, cited by many agents is the fact that you need to be self-motivated.

RealEstateBees notes that, ‘As a real estate salesperson, you are operating a business within a business, even if you are working for the biggest office in town.’ So you need to be active in finding your own listings.

Can you be a part time real estate agent? 

There's nothing stopping you from being a part-time agent, but there are pros and cons. One con is that it may make securing a position more difficult. 

As you can imagine, your success will depend on what it is you're balancing your part-time role with and how well you can manage your time. If you do start your own agency, the great news is you'll be your own boss, so you'll have 100% control over the hours you choose to work.  

What is the highest-paying job in real estate? 

As a real estate sales agent, you can expect to earn commission on your sales, so much of your income earning potential will come down to the size of the sales you make. It also depends on your sales volume, which of course comes down to:

  • The agency you join
  • The local market
  • Your performance

If you are looking at your career development in a broader sense, one of the highest paying jobs in the property industry is as a Development Director with a salary potential of up to $388k according to Hays.

What is the average salary for a real estate agent in Australia?

The average annual salary reported from Seek ranges from $90k to $110k per year. 

Is real estate a good career move for the future?

The National Skills Commission predicts that the number of real estate sales agents will grow strongly through to November 2026 with a 9.5% growth.

What is the profile of an average real estate agent? 

ABS Census data highlights despite a large share of real estate agents being aged 25 to 34 years old, the median age is in fact 44 years old. The industry is not as male-oriented as some may think, with ABS numbers showing that females make up 50% of the workforce.  

How long does it take to get a real estate licence in Australia? 

This depends on where you're applying for your real estate licence, as each state and territory has its own education, experience, licencing requirements and processing times. You can quickly view the details for your state or territory by using the linked list at the top of this article. 

How much does it cost to get a real estate licence in Queensland? 

In Queensland, you can get a one-year individual property licence for $1,599.10. A three-year licence will set you back $2,998.10, with renewals slightly cheaper.  

How much is a real estate course in WA? 

The Diploma of Property (Agency Management) CPP51122 is the most current course that qualifies you to apply for a real estate licence in Western Australia.  

Entry Education delivers a self-paced online course for $1,750 or a 3-day online face-to-face workshop for $2,995 if you're an experienced real estate agent. WCPT also offers the course over 12 months for $3,500.  

How long does it take to get your real estate licence in WA? 

Getting a real estate licence in Western Australia requires you to meet certain qualification and experience requirements, which will depend on your circumstances.  

You'll need to complete the Diploma of Property (Agency Management) CPP51122, which can vary in duration depending on the registered training organisation.  

You'll also need two years or more of real estate industry experience and have completed the real estate licence application process. Depending on your circumstances, these steps can take several months to two years or more.  

What are the requirements to get a real estate licence in WA? 

In WA, you'll need to have completed an approved qualification, with the most current course required being the Diploma of Property (Agency Management) CPP51122.  

You'll also need at least two years of continuous full-time experience in the real estate industry immediately prior to applying for your licence.  

Finally, to get a real estate licence in WA, you'll need to demonstrate sufficient financial resources to carry on the business as a real estate agent. This may involve credit history checks and a confidential statement of assets and liabilities.  

What can you do with an Australian real estate licence? 

You might think that a real estate licence is just your ticket to help clients buy and sell property in Australia — but it's so much more than that.  

You'll be able to: 

  • Undertake property management 
  • Become a real estate consultant 
  • Engage in property development 
  • Offer advice on real estate investment 
  • Open your own real estate agency and manage a team of agents 

It's important to be aware of what activities are allowed under your licence. If you're not sure, check in with your state or territory's licencing authority. 

This post does not represent an endorsement of any of the courses or providers mentioned here. Information was accurate as of publication date.

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