I Have A Real Estate License In Another State And Now Want A Florida License. What Do I Need To Know?

This article is for people who have a real estate license in another state and are looking to get a Florida license.  The process you take depends on your specific situation.


If you have a license in another state and you a U.S. veteran, active military, or spouse of someone who is a veteran or active military, here’s what you do:

We love the military in Florida.  You will be able to apply for a license through reciprocity.  This means you need to fill out the appropriate application, get a background check, and you will be issued a Florida real estate license.  You might even qualify for a fee waiver.


If you have a license in another state, but are currently living in Florida, here’s what you need to know:

If you are currently living in Florida and plan to be here for the next four months, you are considered a Florida resident.  It doesn’t matter if you have changed your driver’s license, voter identification, library card, or anything else.  For the purposes of getting a real estate license, you are considered a Florida resident.

You will have to complete the same process that every other person has to complete to get their real estate license.  You will not have to take the national test because Florida doesn’t have a national test.  You will have to take the same 100-question state exam that everyone takes.  It covers state and federal laws, principles and practices, and math.

If you have had your other real estate license for at least two years, you can use that experience to qualify for a broker’s license rather than a sales license.  Decide before you apply whether you want to apply for broker and sales associate, so that you take the correct class and apply for the correct license.


If you have a license in Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Mississippi, Nebraska, Rhode Island, or West Virginia, and currently reside in one of those states, here’s what you do:

You qualify for licensure through something we call mutual recognition.   You will need to apply for a license through mutual recognition, and pass a 40-question Florida law test.


If you are living in another state that is not mentioned above and you are do not fit the military/veteran reciprocity, here’s the information for you:

You will have to start from scratch – you have to take the class and take the state exam.  You will not have to take the national test because Florida does not use the national test.  You will have to take the same class and state exam that everyone takes.  It covers state and national laws, principles and practices, and math.

If you’ve had your license in the other state for at least two year, you can use that experience to apply for a broker license instead of the sales associate license.  You will need to decide before you apply and take the class because you want to apply for the correct license and take the correct real estate class.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at Demetree School of Real Estate.

Please note that neither Karen Climer nor anyone in the Climer family has any affiliation with Climer School of Real Estate.  Ron and Kathy Climer sold that school in 2014.

By |2023-02-24T06:07:51-05:00January 2nd, 2021|

Should I Take A Live Class or Online Class To Get My Florida Real Estate License?

I often get phone calls from people who are trying to get their Florida real estate sales associate license asking whether it is better to take the class online or live in a classroom. Here’s my answer: if you have a good instructor, the classroom version is better. If you have a bad instructor, and are going to end up teaching yourself anyway, you’d be better off with the online version.

There are two reasons I prefer classroom to online. First, the classroom version has a structured time. You start at 8am because the instructor says it starts at 8am. Frequently, I talk to people who went the online route because they could do it for a few hours after work each day. They want the flexibility. Six months later, they are still trying to find the time to finish the class. If you plan to do the online class when you have time, you will never have time. You have to make the time. The classroom version of the class solves that problem for you.

The flexibility of online classes can be a great benefit or the reason you never finish.

The second reason and more important reason that I prefer the live class is that a good instructor will tell you what is important. In any class, there are things that are more important than others. For example, in driving it is more important to know how to operate the brake pedal than it is to know how to parallel park. An online course that consists of a series of slides may not be able to emphasize that the same way a live person can. When studying for the real estate exam, there are certain aspects that I would bet a thousand dollars would be on the state exam. Other areas of the law are pretty unlikely to be on the exam. I can tell my students that. An online series of slides doesn’t always convey what is important and what is not so important.

I can also be more relevant than an online class. It’s easy for me to adjust my class to say, “This came up in the FREC meeting last week…” or “A student who passed the exam Saturday told me this…” An online class is updated every two years as required by law, but they aren’t going to update it more frequently unless a law changes.

So, if you call and ask me if you should take an online class or a live class, I’m going to always recommend the live class with a good instructor. If you are looking for a class like that, give me a call and I’ll be happy to tell you what my teaching schedule is.

Please note that neither I, nor anyone in the Climer family, have any affiliation with Climer School of Real Estate.  My father, Ron Climer, sold Climer School of Real Estate in 2014.  You can find me at Demetree School of Real Estate.


By |2021-08-25T14:15:42-04:00April 22nd, 2019|

The Best Way To Study For The Florida Real Estate Exam

Recently, I tutored a group of four students. Some had not taken the Florida real estate exam yet. Others had taken it once or twice. All of them needed to pass so they could make more money than the hourly wage they were making.

We decided to do practice questions similar to ones on the Florida real estate exam. I put the question up on the screen, and they would answer it. If they got the answer wrong, I’d explain it to be sure they understood it. Simple enough.

After a few questions, one of them started saying, “Can we just skip to the answer? We don’t know the answers. That will be quicker.”

“Nope,” I said. “You have to read it, think about it, and pick something. That’s what you would do if this were the state exam.”

“I know,” he responded. “But we don’t have time. We’d rather get through all of them.” What he really meant was, “We don’t want to do all this thinking crap – we just want you to tell us.”

It’s just like tying your shoes

This makes me think of a small child who says, “Daddy, please tie my shoe.”

Dad says, “You can do it by yourself. I’ll watch.”

Child whines, “Can’t you do it for me?”

Sure, the dad can tie the daughter’s shoe (let’s hope!). And yes, that would be so much quicker for everyone. If the primary goal were to get the shoe tied, that would be the best course of action. But that’s not the goal. The goal is to be sure that the child is not asking her friends to tie her shoe when she gets into high school.

If my goal were to give you all the information that was on the exam, I wouldn’t be teaching real estate classes or tutoring. I’d be selling real estate textbooks. Everything you need to know to pass the Florida real estate exam is in that book. But it’s not enough to have the information. You have to be able to retrieve it from your memory. The more times you retrieve it from your memory, the stronger the path is.

How your memory works

Think about this … When you walk across a grassy field, you will leave some footprints where the grass is matted down a little bit, but the grass usually bounces right back up. That’s what it’s like when you first attend real estate school. The material is in your brain, but there isn’t any recognizable path to get to it.

But if you go to a college campus or community park, there are paths in the grass that are matted down so much they are nearly permanent. The more times you travel that path, the more ingrained the path gets. Our memory is the same way. The more times you recall something, the more permanent that pathway is. It gets easier and easier each time.

That’s why I made the students think about the answers to the questions. The absolute best way to prepare for the Florida real estate state exam is to do practice questions – but you have to treat like a real test. Don’t read the question then quickly look up the answer. Read the question, think it through, and commit to one answer. Even if you get it wrong, you will be learning more than if you just looked up the answer.

If you need help passing the Florida real estate exam, please give me a call. Just know that if you ask me to tie your shoes, I won’t do it. I’ll show you how to tie them instead.

Please note that neither I, nor anyone in the Climer family, have any affiliation with Climer School of Real Estate.  My father, Ron Climer, sold Climer School of Real Estate in 2014.  You can find me at Demetree School of Real Estate

By |2023-10-19T11:35:35-04:00March 8th, 2018|

What Can I Do With My Florida Real Estate License?

Each month, more than 2,000 people get a real estate in Florida.  Do they all become new real estate agents?  No.  If I had to guess, I would say that about half of them never use their license professionally.  What do the other half do?  As you learned in real estate school, you can advertise, buy, appraise, rent, sell, auction, lease or exchange real estate for another person for compensation.

In Florida, the most common paths are residential real estate, commercial real estate, and timeshare.  Let’s exam each of these individually…


You will have a broker, but you will basically work for yourself.  You have the freedom to set your own hours.  You get to decide if you will wear a golf shirt or a business suit.  You decide how you want to go about selling houses.  In exchange for this freedom, you will have to pay your own expenses.

It is generally recommended that you have about six months of living expenses saved up.  You will need to live on a budget.  You don’t get a check every week, so you have to plan for drier times.

You will work when everyone else is taking time off.  No one shows up to an open house on Tuesday morning.  You will be doing those on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

Many people love the independence this profession offers.


Like residential real estate, you are essentially your own business.  You have a lot of expenses, but you also have a lot of freedom.

The sales cycle is looooooong.  Often, you will work with a client for six months to a year before the deal comes to fruition.  Commercial real estate requires even more budgeting than residential.  You will get very large commission checks, but you may only get a few of them each year.

Your clients will be smart.  Very smart.  They know about business.  You need to understand business, so you can keep up with your clients.  As you gain experience, you will get the opportunity to work complex transactions.  Because of this, few people start off in commercial real estate.  Most people move into it later.  If you are the type of person who looks forward to waking up and turning to the business section of the Wall Street Journal, commercial real estate might be perfect for you.

Commercial real estate tends to focus more on commercial hours.  You won’t be showing property on the weekends, like you would in residential real estate. Your clients wear business attire, so you will too.  Your clients speak the language of business and finance, so you will too.


In some parts of the world, timeshare sales is not an option.  But in Orlando, Florida, where I am, timeshare is king.  There is no better career for a real estate licensee.  I know you are thinking, “Of course, you think that Karen.  You work for a timeshare company.”  That’s true.  I do work for a timeshare company.  But I was born into a family of commercial real estate investors.  My father sold houses.  So I’ve seen all sides of the business.  When I taught real estate, and didn’t work for a timeshare company, I still told my students that timeshare is where it’s at.

So why do I think timeshare is a great business?  First of all, you are an employee of a large company.  This means you have the resources of that large company.  You don’t have to hire your own administrative assistant.  You don’t have to drive your personal car around town.  You don’t have to spend hours at networking events to find new clients.  Anything you need, the company will provide for you.  This includes sales training, marketing material, copies of contracts, clients (yes, the company brings clients to you), and people to do things you don’t do (paperwork, legal issues, follow-up after the sale, etc.).

Because you are an employee, most timeshare resorts also provide health insurance, retirement benefits, paid time off, and many other benefits.  Try asking your residential broker to give you a paid holiday.

There is a lot of money in timeshare.  Most resorts pay some sort of combination between hourly and commission.  You will sell frequently, so you will get commission checks frequently.  The sales cycle is quick, like two hours.  People show up at the resort to get a free prize and walk out two hours later having bought timeshare.  That’s quick.

I can’t speak for every resort but where I work, the good sales reps are easily making six-figure incomes.  I’m not talking about the best ones.  The best ones make over a million dollars.  I’m talking about the good reps.  You know, the ones who are slightly above average.  They make six-figure incomes.  So yes, there is a lot of money in selling timeshare.

Many people love the intensity, camaraderie, and respect for individuality in this industry.

These are not the only three career choices — they are just the most common ones.  If I can help you get your career started, please give me a call.  I’d be happy to help you.

Please note that neither I, nor anyone in the Climer family, have any affiliation with Climer School of Real Estate.  My father, Ron Climer, sold Climer School of Real Estate in 2014.  You can find me at Demetree School of Real Estate

By |2021-08-25T14:41:04-04:00January 4th, 2018|

The Secret Of Success On The Florida Real Estate Exam — And Really Everything In Life

One of my favorite speeches is The Common Denominator of Success by Albert E.N. Gray. This was delivered at the National Association of Life Underwriters Annual Convention in 1940.

It’s worth reading the entire speech, but here’s the most important line: “The common denominator of success – the secret of success of every man who has ever been successful – lies in the fact that he formed a habit of doing things that failures don’t like to do.”

The real estate students who do well in my class usually do not enjoy studying any more than the students who don’t do well.  The successful students formed a habit of study.  They are studying every day, making flash cards, and taking practice exams.  Meanwhile, the unsuccessful students formed a habit of making excuses, “studying” while watching TV, and surfing the internet to find the latest tool that will help them study rather than actually studying.

Successful students form a habit of making flash cards, answering practice questions, and prioritizing studying for the real estate exam over other activities in their life.

Gray goes on to say that successful people are motivated by results while failures are motivated by activities. I have students who study that same few chapters over and over. They know this material, so it is more enjoyable than studying the material they don’t know.  Late when they fail the exam, they say, “But I studied for three days!”  These people focused on pleasing activities (studying the easy material) rather than pleasing results (passing the Florida real estate exam).

This applies to life outside of getting your real estate license as well. The successful sales associates at your office don’t necessarily work harder or have more talent than the others.  They’ve formed a habit of doing things the failures don’t want to do.

If you work in timeshare, those tops reps were not born at the top. They worked on their presentations and studied their scripts until it was perfect.  That’s not always fun.  But it’s always fun to pick up the big paycheck.

If you work in residential sales, you only spend about 25% of your time working with clients and selling houses. The bulk of your time is spent prospecting for new clients.  The successful sales agents are not necessarily smarter.  They don’t even enjoy making prospecting calls.  But they have formed a habit of it.

Check out The Common Denominator of Success. For 2018, commit to forming a habit of doing things that failures don’t like to do.  If you do that, 2018 will be your most prosperous year ever!

Please note that neither I, nor anyone in the Climer family, have any affiliation with Climer School of Real Estate.  My father, Ron Climer, sold Climer School of Real Estate in 2014.  You can find me at Demetree School of Real Estate

By |2021-08-25T14:42:20-04:00December 28th, 2017|
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