I grew up in Florida and went to college in Alabama.  In the Deep South, like Alabama and Georgia, if you go to a restaurant and order a Coke, they will ask you, “What kind?”  Then you can say, “I’d like Sprite.”  In other words, “Coke” is a synonym for carbonated beverage — what I would refer to as “soda”.

In Florida, if you order a “Coke,” they will either bring you a Coca-Cola or they will say, “Is Pepsi OK?”  So in this case, “Coke” means a specific flavor of carbonated beverage.

Same word.  Different meanings.

I’ve also had the experience in different parts of the country, where I will order a “soda” and the waiter says, “Do you mean pop?”

The same thing, a generic carbonated beverage is called Coke, soda, soft drink, or pop, depending on where you are.  The word “Coke” can mean a specific flavor of carbonated beverage or it can mean any kind of soft drink depending on where you live.

What does this have to do with real estate exam prep?

I have written before about why you should not use any study material from a company that is not physically located in Florida.  About thirty of the states have a state test and a national test.  That material you are studying from those companies is material that is on the national test.  We don’t have a national test, so you are studying material that is not going to be on the Florida real estate state exam.

Imagine you get this question…

Coke is a

  1. specific flavor of carbonated beverage created by the Coca-Cola Company.
  2. term encompassing all flavors of carbonated beverages.
  3. drink that is more commonly referred to as pop or soda.
  4. type of soft drink that is created by multiple companies.

The correct answer is A.  But if you have been listening to Mr. Nationaltestprep, you might think it is B, C, or D, depending on where Mr. Nationaltestprep lives.

Some students insist on studying that material because they can find it easily, it’s free, or it’s in a format they like.  They show up to class and they know what a trust deed is.  That’s great, but we don’t have trust deeds in Florida.  They know what a lease option is.  That’s great, but that’s not on the Florida real estate exam.  They know what fee simple defeasible, emblements, puffing, fructus naturales, fructus industriales, and express easements are.  None of that is on the Florida state exam.

What’s worse than learning extra material is that sometimes they learn incorrect material.  I listened to one of these national company’s YouTube channel for about ten minutes.  In that short time frame, I heard several definitions that were absolutely incorrect in terms of how we use the terms in Florida.  One particular exam prep program was giving incorrect definitions about Florida contracts.  The contract section is 12 points on our test.  You can’t afford to learn incorrect information about contracts!

If you study material that is primarily designed for the national test, you will likely fail the Florida real estate exam.  That is like preparing for your Italian test by studying Spanish.  Yes, Spanish and Italian are similar, but they are definitely different languages.  The best way to pass a Spanish test is to study Spanish, not Italian.  Likewise, the best way to pass the Florida real estate exam is to study material that is written for Florida.

What’s the litmus test for determining whether the material is good for Florida?  Look up the author in the DBPR license portal.  If the author does not have a real estate license in Florida, are they the best person to teach you how to get a real estate license in Florida?  I’m not sure how someone can teach you to pass a test that they themselves have never even attempted.

Please note that I do not work for, nor have any affiliation with, Climer School of Real Estate.  My family sold the school in 2014.  There are no Climers who are affiliated with that school.