Idaho Online Real Estate Academy

How To Get Your Idaho Real Estate License:
The Complete Guide

December 2023 Updated Version

Idaho Real Estate License

To get your Idaho real estate license, you’ll need to complete the requirements set out by the State. In this article we’ll walk you through the steps to getting your real estate license in Idaho as well as other important information such as the cost and amount of time and effort required.

Be sure to bookmark this post so that when you’re ready to start down the journey of getting your Idaho real estate license you have everything you need right in front of you! As a State accredited Idaho real estate school, rest assured that the information you’re getting here is both accurate and comprehensive!

Let’s start with Why.

Why get your Idaho Real Estate License?

  • You want to be able to earn a commission from helping buyers and sellers
  • You want to be able to (legally) earn a referral fee
  • You’re looking to increase your knowledge of real estate for investment or professional purposes
  • You’re looking to make a lifestyle change
  • You want to have more freedom and control over your time
  • You love real estate and are passionate about helping people have a positive experience buying or selling their home

There are many great reasons to get into real estate. The starting point for all of them is the same: getting your real estate education in the form of the Salesperson Pre-license classes.

These classes are created by the State to provide the foundational real estate knowledge you need and are designed for beginners. If you already have a background in real estate, you will likely find many of the concepts familiar.

Note however, that Idaho’s real estate laws have many nuances that are different from other states and the classes will help bring you up to speed and set you up for success.

Ready to get Started?

Quick Facts About Getting Your Idaho Real Estate License

  • Minimum Time Required: 5-6 Weeks from start to finish
  • Time in Class: 90 Hours
  • Required Classes: Salesperson Pre-license Modules 1 & 2
  • Study Time Outside of Class to Prepare for Exams: 15 Hours+
  • Difficulty Level: Passable with focus and effort
  • Exams & Required Passing Score
    • End of Module 1 & 2 Exam | 70% Score | Multiple Choice
    • State & National Exam | 70% Score | Multiple Choice

Cost of Getting an Idaho Real Estate License

Before we go further, let’s take a look at the cost of getting your Idaho real estate license.

In order to get licensed, from start to finish you’re looking at an investment between $1,060 to $1,260, depending on how many additional resources you purchase.

Here’s the list of expenses:

  • Total – $1,060 to $1,260
  • Module 1 & 2 Education Requirement 
  • Application Fee to the State – $160
  • Fingerprint Processing Fee – $61.25
  • Exam Fee – $80
  • E&O Insurance – $208/Year

In terms of earning potential, real estate is one of the least expensive professions to get into. Top earning agents make more than doctors and lawyers who have to go to school for many years and their cost of education is often in the tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars. This means that many of these professionals start their careers with significant amounts of debt. The flip side is that it is relatively easy to become a real estate agent and so there’s more competition and you don’t have as guaranteed of an income.

Now you know the basics, let’s dive into the requirements for getting your Idaho real estate license.

Idaho Real Estate License Guide Step 1 – Meet the Basic Requirements

  • 18 Years or older at time of submitting application
  • Legal US Resident
  • High School Graduate (or equivalent)

As you can see, the initial requirements are very open for most people. As long as you can pass the class and exams, you can become a real estate agent and pursue your dreams.

Idaho Real Estate License Guide Step 2 – Complete the Education Requirements

Idaho Real Estate License Education Requirements:

  • Complete Module 1 & 2 Salesperson Pre-License Classes (90 hours in total)

The learning options approved by the State for study are:

  • Live in-person (the Idaho Real Estate Commission (”IREC”) uses the term Live Classes for this option),
  • Instructor led online via Zoom (IREC uses the term Remote Learning for this option) and
  • Online via a self-paced learning platform (IREC calls this Online Learning).

There are several considerations when choosing a learning method for your education needs. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each.

Live In-Person Classes

  • Pros
    • Get to meet the instructor and other students in person
    • Easy to ask questions
    • Don’t have to worry about technology challenges or Internet connection
  • Cons
    • May need to commute a significant distance both ways (effort, cost & safety)
    • Typically no eating in class
    • Schedule is rigid and may not work for you (class times are fixed)

Instructor Led Online via Zoom (Remote)

  • Pros
    • Get to meet instructor and other students virtually and build relationships and engage
    • Easy to ask questions
    • Able to learn from the comfort of home with no commute
    • Able to eat and drink
  • Cons
    • Schedule is rigid and may not work for you (class times are fixed)

Online Self-Paced

  • Pros
    • Full flexibility on when you learn
    • Able to learn from the comfort of home with no commute
    • Able to eat and drink
  • Cons
    • Classes aren’t as engaging compared to instructor lead classes (in author’s experience)
    • Not able to get questions answered in real time
    • No in class opportunity meet other students or instructor and build network

Now that we know what type of classes are available, next let’s move on to how you can find approved classes.

 There are broadly two resources: the Idaho Real Estate Commission Education lookup tool on their website, and individual school websites. Note that you can’t sign-up for classes on the State website, they just provide the information for your reference.

The Idaho Real Estate Commission website takes a little know-how to successfully navigate, so let’s step through that here.

First, you can either type in “Idaho Real Estate Commission” into a search engine like Google, or you can enter the URL directly, which is

Once you reach their website, on the right-hand side you’ll find an Education Lookup icon, click on that.

Idaho Real Estate Classes

Next you will find a search tool. Type in Module 1 in the Course Name, that way you don’t get a long list of all the classes offered. Then click into the Course Type and select “Prelicense.” You can then click into the Course Delivery and select the type of class you’re looking for (recall that live = in person classes where you drive to a school, Online = Online Self-Paced learning with no instructor and Remote = Instructor taught online via Zoom).

Idaho Real Estate Classes
Idaho Real Estate Commission Website

Once you click search, you will get a page that looks like this where you can browse the different classes offered.

Once you click into one of the options, you will get more details like the time the class is offered, which school offers it, the class price and the website where you can go to register for the class (you can’t register directly through IREC).

If we click through the website listed above, link here, you can see the upcoming class dates and registration link.

Idaho Real Estate License
Idaho Real Estate License


Each Module is broken out into different content, so you’ll notice that there is very little overlap between classes. This means that either module can be taken in whichever order.

State Required Textbooks

There are two textbooks required by the State for the pre-license education. You can find this information on their website’s Library page here and look for the “Approved Textbook List.”

In addition to the two textbooks, students also receive a class outline for each Module to follow along in class. 

Module 1 (45 Hours) Study Topics

  • Introduction to the Real Estate Business
  • Real Property and the Law
  • Interests in Real Estate
  • Forms of Real Estate Ownership
  • Land Description
  • Real Estate Brokerage
  • Real Estate Agency
  • Real Estate Contracts
  • Real Estate Taxes and Other Liens
  • Real Estate Appraisal
  • Leases and Property Management
  • Fair Housing
  • Land-Use Controls and Property Development
  • Environmental Issues and the Real Estate Transaction

Module 2 (45 Hours) Study Topics

  • Agency and the New Real Estate Licensee
  • Real Estate and Mathematics
  • A Buyer’s Agent
  • Real Estate Financing
  • Government Involvement in Real Estate Financing
  • A Seller’s Agent
  • The Transfer and Recording of Title
  • Closing the Transaction
  • Now What?

What’s type of information are you really learning?

The content of the classes can be broken down into a few categories.

  • Terminology
    • What does intestate or riparian rights mean?
    • What is blockbusting or redlining?
    • What’s the difference between a real estate agent and a Realtor?
  • Concepts
    • What is the difference between a consumer and a customer?
    • How are water rights different in Idaho?
    • What is the income approach to an appraisal?
  • Real Estate Math
    • How to calculate a commission?
    • How to calculate a proration?
    • How to calculate the size of a plot of land from a description?

Will I be a real estate expert by the time I graduate?
The quick answer is no, this class is a starting point and provides a basic foundation. You will need to work with mentors in your brokerage to learn more of the ins and outs of being a successful real estate agent. In fact, that is one thing to make sure you do when interviewing brokerages: find out what type of training and support they provide to new agents.

Study Tips

  • Take notes in class and review them
  • Highlight and write in your textbook – you paid for it!
  • Use the end of chapter reviews in the textbooks
  • Make flashcards to review concepts and terminology
  • Partner with someone (from class or otherwise) and have them test you on the material
  • Use practice exams to test your knowledge

Factoring in Your Workload with Study Time Needed
If you’re busy with work, school or the home during weekdays, you may want to consider a weekend class like this one. That way you don’t have to take time off of work and can make progress towards your life goals.

Another option that can work well for busy people is the self-paced fully online learning option, which you can find more information about here. For people that have the time and prefer a more structured learning environment, attending class in person can be a great option as well.

At the Idaho Online Real Estate Academy, we see that students who show up to class (there’s a 100% attendance requirement from the State), take notes and review the content outside of class and ask questions typically do well. We have a high pass rate and try to set our students up for success.

Know that you will need to set aside time outside of class to review the content and deepen your understanding. The amount of time will depend on how quickly you learn, how well you retain information and how familiar you are with the material. That being said, for each Module I would set aside at least 3-4 hours outside of class in order to pass the end of Module exam.

If for whatever reason you don’t pass the end of Module exam with a 70% or better, you get one free re-take of the same content with different questions. If you don’t pass the re-take, then the State requires that you re-take the class. This happens somewhat frequently, so set yourself up for success by actively engaging, asking questions and studying outside of class.

One paid resource that students find helpful for both the end of module exams and the “big test” once you finish the class is practice exams. They give you the opportunity to test your understanding in a safe environment and you can focus in on the topics that require more attention. 

Attendance Requirements & Missing Class
The State has a strict 100% attendance requirement for in-person and online instructor lead classes. What this means is that you can lose credit just for being a few minutes late so be sure to be early! As the saying goes, “to be early is to be on-time and to be on-time is to be late.” Also be sure to pick classes where the dates work for your schedule.

That being said, at the school’s discretion they can allow a limited amount of Make Up Work for students who have to miss class due to unavoidable circumstances. This often takes the form of watching a recording of the class and answering questions about the content. The keyword here is “limited amount” of missing class. Again, be sure that you’re ready to commit to the class dates when you sign-up.  

 Whew! That was a lot of information in one-step. Hopefully you’re still reading along and that answered most of your questions! Okay, on to Step 3!

Idaho Real Estate License Guide Step 3 – Take the Exam and Register for Fingerprints

Idaho Real Estate Salesperson License Exam
In order to register for the exam, you’ll need to go on Pearson VUE’s website and create an account.

Idaho Real Estate License Exam

After you’ve created an account, you’ll go to schedule an exam. Select ReID-Sales: ID Sales. Note that if you’re submitting a hard card fingerprint, you’ll select that option under the schedule an exam section as well.

Be sure to read through the Idaho Real Estate Policies, especially the Admission Policy. Namely, they require you to show 2 forms of current signature bearing identification, one of which has to be include a government issued photograph such as a driver’s license or state ID. You’re also not allowed to bring anything with you except for your ID. On the day of the exam, you’ll be given a locker to keep your personal items in. Scratch paper, a calculator and pencil will be provided.

Next, you’ll then select a testing center based on your location, then a date/time. After that you’ll arrive at a confirmation view. After you submit payment via a credit or debit card, you’re good to go.

You have 4 hours to complete the State and National (General) portions of the exam. The exams themselves are multiple choice and consist of 80 questions in total. You’ll need a 70% or better in order to pass. If you fail, the system will show you your score, however if you pass, it will only say pass.

As a professional who handles confidential client information and has a legal obligation to act in customer’s best interests, the State requires all Idaho real estate agents to get fingerprinted and have a background check done. There are two types of fingerprints: old fashioned paper and ink (known as hard cards) and digital fingerprints (known as LiveScan). Fingerprints are processed through a third-party company called Pearson VUE and can take anywhere from 7-21 days to process for digital fingerprints and 3-6 weeks for mailed in hard cards.

Note that applicants only have six months to submit your license application from the date your fingerprints are approved (“Res-OK”). No extensions are allowed.

Pearson VUE Link for Idaho Real Estate Fingerprinting

Digital Fingerprints (known as LiveScan)

**Update: Live scan collection at the testing centers is currently unavailable**

Make an appointment in advance at selected Pearson VUE test centers using this link. There will be a digital scanner to take your fingerprints and takes around 10 minutes to scan your fingers in, excluding wait time.

Test centers with the LiveScan digital equipment are located at:

  • Boise
  • Twin Falls
  • Pocatello
  • Coeur d’Alene
  • Spokane, WA

When registering you will create an appointment at the test center most conveniently located near you and pay the processing fee. Note that you cannot pay the processing fee at the test center. It must be done in advance. Be sure to use your full legal name as it appears on your State issued ID card.

Hard Card Prints (Ink and Paper)
You can get your fingerprints taken by local law enforcement and sheriff’s offices for a small fee. Note that this fee is separate from the fingerprint processing fee that Pearson VUE. Be sure to contact the law enforcement office in advance to find out if they require appointments.

Here are the steps for submitting a Hard Card Fingerprint (Read Closely)

  1. Call to find out if you need to schedule an appointment with your local law enforcement and make an appointment if required
  2. When at the local law enforcement office, fill out the hard card information as detailed below on a FD-258 card
  3. Get your fingerprints taken
  4. Setup an appointment with a Pearson VUE fingerprint center to pay for the fingerprint processing fee of $61.25 at the time of setting up the appointment
  5. Submit your hard card original and a copy of your payment confirmation from Pearson VUE. Do not send payment with your hard card.

 On the fingerprint hard card, there is certain information that must be listed as below.

  1. ORI must be entered as ID920050Z
  2. The reason for fingerprint must exactly state IdC 54-2012-Real Estate License
  3. The OCA field must be left blank

Note that the original hard card must be sent to Pearson VUE, not a copy.

If submitting a hard card (FD-258), send the original and printed payment confirmation email to:

Idaho Appraiser and Real Estate Fingerprints
1125B Avenida High View Rd.
Driftwood, TX 78619
Please send via USPS

You can find more information from Pearson VUE on the hard card fingerprinting process here.

Fingerprint Processing
All status updates are posted directly to your Online Service account with the Idaho Real Estate Commission. If for whatever reason you don’t see your fingerprint status on your Online Service account and more than 21 days have passed  

 Setting up an IREC Account
To track all licensees and applicants, IREC uses a password protected account service called IREC online services. This is where your fingerprint status, education records, exam results and other important information is stored. You can register online using this link.

When registering, be sure to use your full legal name as it appears on your State issued ID

Idaho Real Estate License Guide Step 4 – Submit Your Application & Supporting Documents

To set yourself up for success when submitting your Idaho real estate Salesperson application, be sure to include the below documents. Remember to bookmark this page so that you can easily find everything you need to know when it’s time to apply for your Idaho real estate license.

Required List of Documents for Submission with your Application

  • $160 license fee
    • Pay by check made out to the Idaho Real Estate Commission or
    • Pay by Debit/Credit Card by printing and filling out the IREC Authorization Form which you can find on their website under Forms > Miscellaneous or by clicking here
  • Copy of high school or college or university diploma, or official high school or college transcript
  • Copy of document showing legal presence in the US

Things to Watch Out For

  1. Your application needs to be notarized, so don’t sign your application until you are in front of the notary public
  2. If you’re actively licensed in another state, be sure to include that information and provide supporting documentation
  3. Use your legal name as it appears on your government issued ID

Idaho Real Estate License Guide Step 5 – Choose a Brokerage to Work With

Factors to Consider When Selecting a Brokerage

  • Company Culture and Workstyle
    • Are there Teams who work together or is it every agent for themselves?
    • Do they have office get togethers or is it more independent?
    • What is the average tenure of agents in their office? Do people stick around?
  • Support and Training for New Agents
    • Is there a mentorship program?
    • Do they have formal training programs? Is there a fee?
    • Do they provide leads or are you on your own?
  • Costs, Fees & Commission Split
    • How much do you have to pay for their office support?
    • What brokerage fee do they charge their clients? How much of that do you get to keep?

Getting Errors & Omissions (E&O) Insurance
Typically, the brokerage that you will work with provides this insurance. It is a requirement by the State and part of protecting yourself as an agent in case you make a mistake. Different brokerages work with different insurance providers, have differing levels of coverage and a different cost to you. It runs approximately $208 per year, but again can differ depending on the brokerage and plan.

Continuing Education Requirements
After getting licensed, be aware that you still have a continuing education requirement as set out by the State. Prior to your first license renewal, the timing of which will be displayed on your IREC Online Services portal, you have to take 12 hours of post license classes and 2 Idaho core courses. You can find information about the classes by using the same Education Lookup as you did for the pre-license classes, however instead of searching for pre-license in the Course Type, you’ll look for Post-License or Core.

You can find self-paced fully online options via our partner. Keep an eye out for the different promotions they have going on to save some hard-earned money.

Final Thoughts

Congratulations! If you’ve read this far it means that you’re committed to getting your Idaho Real Estate license and now you have all of the information you’ll need in order to be successful in getting it.

The steps are fairly simple, but as we’ve seen there is some nuance around certain parts of the application process. It is our hope that this article prepares you for getting your license with ease.


Best of luck! You’ve got this!

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