Taking the Exam


  • Salesperson: 3 hours - 150 multiple choice questions.
  • Broker: 4 hours - 200 multiple choice questions.
  • Sessions begin promptly as scheduled. Please arrive 30 minutes early.


Examinations conducted in Fresno, La Palma, Oakland, Sacramento and San Diego are currently offered in an electronic format.

Examinations are subject to cancellation. In the event that unforeseen circumstances force the closure of an exam center, your exam date will be rescheduled at no additional cost. The Department will not be held responsible for any expenses incurred beyond the cost of the exam, including but not limited to travel expenses and lost wages on the day of the exam.


The examinations are given in a multiple-choice format. Answers are selected from four choices (see description of salesperson or broker examination content).

Acceptable Forms of Identification

To be admitted into an examination, you must show a valid form of photo identification. Only the following forms of photo identification will be accepted:

  • Current state-issued driver's license or DMV identification card
  • U.S. Passport or Passport issued by a foreign government
  • U.S. Military identification card

You will not be admitted into the examination without a valid form of photo identification as listed above.

Examination Control Information

For security reasons, the following items are NOT permitted in the examination room:

  • cell phones
  • purses
  • wallets
  • smart glasses
  • keys
  • backpacks
  • briefcases
  • suitcases
  • food
  • drink
  • gum
  • study materials
  • tablets
  • laptops
  • PDAs
  • calculators
  • cameras
  • video or digital recording devices
  • watches
  • pens
  • lapel pins
  • tie tacs
  • hats or caps
  • weapons
  • other items deemed inappropriate by proctors

Cell phone use and/or mere possession of a cell phone during an exam is strictly prohibited, including while out on break. All cell phones must be powered off and placed in an individual locker provided for your use. When individual lockers are unavailable, a Personal Belongings storage table will be set up for disallowed items. Failure to comply with examination administration rules will lead to your disqualification.

You cannot inspect your book or answer sheet after the examination session has ended (Section 1798.40(e) of the California Civil Code).

The Department of Real Estate and its employees will not be liable or responsible for the loss or damage of any personal belongings that are brought to a real estate examination. If personal belongings are brought to the examination, they are to be placed in a storage area apart from the owner, as directed by proctor staff.

Be advised that DRE will not be responsible for lost or stolen items.

Conduct Penalties

Business & Professions Code Excerpts

123. It is a misdemeanor for any person to engage in any conduct which subverts or attempts to subvert any licensing examination of the administration of an examination, including, but not limited to:

  1. Conduct which violates the security of the examination materials; removing from the examination room any examination materials without authorization; the unauthorized reproduction by any means of any portion of the actual licensing examination; aiding by any means the unauthorized reproduction of any portion of the actual licensing examination; paying or using professional or paid examination takers for the purpose of reconstructing any portion of the licensing examination; obtaining examination questions or other examination material, except by specific authorization either before, during, or after an examination; or using or purporting to use any examination questions or materials which were improperly removed or taken from any examination for the purpose of instructing or preparing any applicant for examination; or selling, distributing, buying, receiving, or having unauthorized possession of any portion of a future, current, or previously administered licensing examination.
  2. Communicating with any other examinee during the administration of a licensing examination; copying answers from another examinee or permitting one's answers to be copied by another examinee; having in one's possession during the administration of the licensing examination any books, equipment, notes, written or printed materials, or data of any kind, other than the examination materials distributed, or otherwise authorized to be in one's possession during the examination; or impersonating any examinee or having an impersonator take the licensing examination on one's behalf.

    Nothing in this section shall preclude prosecution under the authority provided for in any other provision of law.

    In addition to any other penalties, a person found guilty of violating this section, shall be liable for the actual damages sustained by the agency administering the examination not to exceed ten thousand dollars ($10,000) and the costs of litigation.
  3. If any provision of this section or the application thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the section that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this section are severable.

123.5. Whenever any person has engaged, or is about to engage, in any acts or practices which constitute, or will constitute, a violation of Section 123, the superior court in and for the county wherein the acts or practices take place, or are about to take place, may issue an injunction, or other appropriate order, restraining such conduct on application of a board, the Attorney General or the district attorney of the county.

The proceedings under this section shall be governed by Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 525) of Title 7 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure. The remedy provided for by this section shall be in addition to, and not a limitation on, the authority provided for in any other provision of law.

496. A board may deny, suspend, revoke, or otherwise restrict a license on the ground that an applicant or licensee has violated Section 123 pertaining to subversion of licensing examinations.

10153.01 (a).No person shall cheat on, subvert, or attempt to subvert a licensing examination given by the department. Cheating on, subverting, or attempting to subvert a licensing examination includes, but is not limited to, engaging in, soliciting, or procuring any of the following:

  1. Any communication between one or more examinees and any person, other than a proctor or examination official, while the examination is in progress.
  2. Copying answers from another examinee or permitting one's answers to be copied by another examinee.
  3. The taking of all or a part of the examination by a person other than the applicant.
  4. Removing from the examination room any examination materials without authorization.
  5. The unauthorized reproduction by any means of any portion of the actual licensing examination.
  6. Aiding by any means the unauthorized reproduction of any portion of the actual licensing examination.
  7. Possession or use at any time during the examination or while the examinee is on the examination premises of any device, material, or document that is not expressly authorized for use by examinees during the examination, including, but not limited to, notes, crib sheets, textbooks, and electronic devices.
  8. Failure to follow any examination instruction or rule related to examination security.
  9. Providing false, fraudulent, or materially misleading information concerning education, experience, or other qualifications as part of, or in support of, any application for admission to an examination.

(b) The commissioner may bar any candidate who willfully cheats on, subverts, or attempts to subvert an examination from taking any license examination and from holding an active real estate license under any provision of this code for a period of up to three years.

10153.1. It is unlawful for any person with respect to any examination under this part to practice any deception or fraud with regard to his or her identity in connection with any examination, application, or request to be examined.

Any person who willfully violates or knowingly participates in the violation of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Regulations of the Real Estate Commissioner

2763. (a) A person taking an examination for a license issued by the Department shall abide by all of the following rules from the time of entry into the examination room until the examinee has completed the examination and left the examination room:

  1. An examinee may not refer to any printed or written material other than that furnished by the Department.
  2. Written computations by examinees shall be made only on paper furnished by the Department for that purpose.
  3. An examinee may not communicate with another examinee nor with any person other than an examination proctor.
  4. The copying of questions and the making of any notes of examination materials by an examinee is prohibited.
  5. An examinee may not leave the examination room prior to completion of the examination unless express permission of an examination proctor has been obtained and all examination papers and materials have been turned over to the proctor.
  6. The only materials or devices, other than those furnished by the Department, that an examinee may use during the course of the examination are pencils and slide rules or silent, battery-operated, electronic, pocket-sized calculators which are non-programmable, do not have a print-out capability, or an alphabetic keyboard.
  7. An examinee may not share the use of examination materials with any other examinee.

(b) A violation of any of the above rules or verbal directives of an examination proctor is ground to disqualify an examinee and to initiate appropriate administrative action to deny the issuance of a license to the examinee.

Notification of Examination Results

If you took an electronic examination, your results were provided to you upon completion of the exam. Additional correspondence may be mailed to you, normally within five business days after your examination.

To pass the examination, you must correctly answer at least:

  • 70% of the questions (Salespersons), or
  • 75% of the questions (Brokers)

Since the examination is qualifying in nature, examinees who pass are not informed of their final score.

You will be notified of the actual score, and the percentage of questions answered correctly in each of the subject areas, only when unsuccessful. HOWEVER, the overall score cannot be obtained by averaging the percentages. Those who do not receive a passing grade may apply to re-take the examination.

Re-taking the Examination

You may apply to re-take the examination after notification of failure of a prior test.

Do NOT submit a new application and fee or otherwise attempt to obtain a new examination date prior to receiving the results of this examination. You must wait until you receive your results before re-applying for a new test date. Failure to follow these instructions will cause your exam record to be flagged and your test results to be withheld while additional fees are assessed. Further, rescheduling prior to receiving the results of this exam can cause any new dates obtained to be changed, delayed, or cancelled.

If you fail an examination, you may apply to re-take the examination using the eLicensing online system (to expedite processing) or your Examination Result Notice (RE 418A, Salespersons or RE 418B, Brokers).

If you are unable to locate your Examination Result Notice, you may use a Salesperson Examination Change Application RE 415A Denotes a PDF document or a Broker Examination Change Application RE 415B Denotes a PDF document to apply to re-take the examination. These forms must not be submitted until after the results of the examination have been released, or the fee will be forfeited.

There is no limitation on the number of examinations you may take during the two-year period following the date of the filing of your original application. If you wish to take additional examinations after the two-year period, you will be required to submit a new application, requalify by meeting all statutory requirements, and the appropriate fee.

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