Guide to Becoming A Real Estate Agent in South Carolina

By Ciprian Morariu Published: February 29, 2024

Real Estate Agent in South Carolina

Are you looking forward to a lucrative career after getting a real estate license in South Carolina? To answer this question better, it is necessary to look at the prevailing housing market trends in the state. 

The State of the Real Estate Market in South Carolina

The South Carolina housing market is constantly evolving with experts predicting continuous growth in 2024. However, there are several challenges faced by the real estate market in the state.

First, there is a significant demand-supply mismatch with the increase in demand for housing far exceeding the increase in housing supply. Another factor that has a bearing on the housing sector is the mortgage interest rates. 

Let us now check the housing market forecast for South Carolina in 2024 based on certain key parameters. These metrics are indicative of the current and future trends of the housing market.

  • Average home value: At $284,797, there has been a 3.3% increase in home prices in South Carolina. This augurs well for the state’s housing market, showing growth. 
  • Housing inventory: The housing inventory levels play a crucial role in buyer-seller interactions and influence the supply-demand forces at work. The state is not behind on this metric with 19,804 housing units available for sale as of January 31, 2024. In this month alone, 5,247 new units have been listed on the market. 
  • Days on the market: South Carolina homes stay on the market for about 26 days before going pending. This very fast turnaround signals a real estate environment that is dynamic and competitive, quickly holding the attention of potential buyers. 

All these indicate that South Carolina has a thriving real estate market and salespersons and brokers can carry out a flourishing practice here. 

This post will go into the details of how to become a real estate agent in South Carolina and what are the requirements for an SC real estate license. 

Key Takeaways

  • The Concept Behind the Real Estate Licensing Process
    • Importance of Licensing in South Carolina
    • Benefits of Working As A Real Estate Agent in the State
  • Step-by-Step Guide to Obtaining a Real Estate License
    • Fulfilling Educational Requirements
    • Exam Preparation
    • Taking the Real Estate Exam
    • Application Process
  • Understanding the Prerequisites
    • Age and Legal Requirements
    • Educational Requirements
    • Character and Background Check
  • What is the Time Taken To Get A South Carolina Real Estate License
    • Duration of Real Estate Coursework
    • Exam Preparation Timeframe
    • Application Processing Time

The Concept Behind The Real Estate License Process

Why Is Licensing in South Carolina Important

One of the benefits a real estate license in South Carolina is that you will not be limited to basic salesperson’s work. You can branch out into being a commercial agent, a leasing agent, or a property manager. Of course, you must go through specific courses in each specialization. 

You also get quick access to deals and do not have to wait for a realtor or broker to inform you of a new property in the market. With a real estate license, you will be the first point of contact and will immediately know about a new listing hitting the MLS. 

To become a licensed agent, you must go through 60 hours of pre-licensing coursework. Without this mandatory education and a license, you will find it very tough to negotiate the complex real estate market.

Benefits of Working As A Real Estate Agent in the State

An analysis of the real estate market in South Carolina proves that it pays to pursue a real estate career in the state. The housing market is robust and vibrant with the average home value increasing by nearly 3.3% year-on-year. Further, there has been a constant supply of inventory with January 2024 alone seeing an addition of 5,247 units. 

There is a high market turnover too. A new listing stays on the market for hardly 26 days before it goes into pending, a very fast movement when compared to the average of other states.

All these statistics prove that a real estate agent in South Carolina can earn high commissions due to the volume of closed deals. This dynamic real estate environment in South Carolina makes it very lucrative for salespersons to carry on their trade in the state. 

Step-by-step Guide To Obtaining A Real Estate License

Fulfilling Educational Requirements

To get a real estate license in South Carolina, you must go through 60 hours of pre-licensing coursework. After passing the licensing exam but before getting your license, a further 30 hours of coursework must be completed. The first part is South Carolina Real Estate Principles and the second is Advanced Real Estate Sales Principles. 

If you are wondering how long it takes to finish real estate school, it is not a matter of these 60 hours of coursework alone. You are not permitted to rush through the course at random and will be limited to a fixed number of hours per day.  

Preparing For and Taking the Real Estate Exam

All pre-licensing schools or coursework must be approved by the South Carolina Real Estate Commission (SCREC) to be counted for the award of a license. Most course providers offer online courses which are very convenient as you can study anytime on the go. 

RealEstateU offers online courses that are designed by top professionals in this field. Hence the courses are top quality ones and priced very reasonably. You can complete them at your own pace without upsetting your routine life.

After you have completed the first 60-hour part of the pre-licensing coursework, apply to the SCREC for a license. Once the approval is received, schedule the licensing exam at a PSI testing center. 

The real estate agent’s exam consists of 80 national questions and 30 state-specific ones of which 56 national-level questions and 21 state-level questions must be correctly answered.   

The results are announced in a pass/fail mode soon after completion of the exam.  

How to Apply for A S. Carolina Real Estate License

Apply to the SCREC after you complete the 60 hours of pre-licensing coursework. Attach the coursework completion certificate and proof of background check for any past criminal activities. Also, pay the required exam fees of $63. 

On approval, you are eligible to sit for the exam.

South Carolina Real Estate Agent

Prerequisites for Obtaining A Real Estate License in South Carolina 

Age and Legal Requirements

The first point is that you must be at least 18 years old when you are granted a license. However, this does not mean that you can go through the pre-licensing work, take the licensing exam, and complete all other formalities only after turning 18. These steps can be completed even before you reach 18 but you will be awarded a license only after you cross that age barrier.

Next, you must be an American citizen to work in the real estate industry in the state. Legally admitted aliens who have been granted working rights in the USA can also join the real estate sector in South Carolina. 

Educational Requirements for South Carolina Real Estate License

There are two tiers in the South Carolina pre-licensing coursework.  

  • South Carolina Real Estate Principles (Unit I) – 60 hours 
  • South Carolina Advanced Real Estate Principles (Unit II) 30 hours. This part can be taken after you pass the licensing exam. But you will get your license only after you pass this coursework. 

Online courses by RealEstateU are created by professionals with many years of industry experience. Enroll for the coursework and pass the licensing exam on the first try.   

Character and Background Check

Character and background are essential for real estate professionals before getting a license as they have to maintain high ethical standards at work. All aspiring real estate salespersons are required to go through fingerprint checks from the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) and the FBI to verify past criminal records.  

Applicants for a license are provided with instructions on how to go through fingerprint tests by the SCREC. 

What is The Time Taken To Get A S Carolina Real Estate License 

Duration of Real Estate Coursework

You should complete Unit I which is the 60-hour course in about three weeks by investing about three hours per day. 

Similarly, the 30-hour Unit II should take you about two to three weeks depending on your daily routine and how much time you can dedicate to studies. Hence, the answer to how long it takes to finish real estate school is 6 weeks including going through both Unit I and II.  

Application Processing Time   

The time taken for processing your application constitutes a bulk of how long to get a real estate license.

After you pass your licensing exam, the Commission will instruct you on how to get fingerprinted and complete your background checks. This step will take about two to three weeks.

Once you pass the licensing exam, contact a broker to mentor you. This will help you quickly get to know more about the functioning of the real estate industry. This will take some time so you should start your search even before you pass the licensing exam. 

Taking all these factors into consideration, how long does it take to get a real estate license in South Carolina? Provided you spend a lot of time daily going through the pre-licensing coursework and pass the exam on the first try, the total time taken to get a license is approximately two months. 

However, if you go through the coursework at a slow pace and take your time in selecting a broker, the ball-mark figure of how long to get a real estate license is about a reasonable 4 months.