3 Things That Will Disqualify You from Becoming a Real Estate Agent.

Entering the real estate industry can be a lucrative and rewarding career path.
Ethan Parker, Real Estate Agent
What Disqualifies You from Becoming a Real Estate Agent
However, there are certain qualifications and standards that must be met.
Understanding what could potentially disqualify you from becoming a real estate agent is crucial before you embark on this journey.

1.Background Checks and Criminal History

1.Background Checks: The First Hurdle

Before obtaining a real estate license, applicants must undergo an extensive background check.

The Department of Real Estate (DRE) scrutinizes applicants to ensure the integrity and safety of the industry.

2.Criminal Convictions: A Major Red Flag

Criminal convictions, especially those related to fraud, dishonesty, or other crimes that reflect on a person’s character, are significant factors that can lead to disqualification.

In general, any felony conviction within the past seven years or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude within the past five years will likely prevent you from obtaining a real estate license.

 READ ALSO:Discovering Real Estate Path: Is Real Estate The Right Fit For You? My Story and Advice

2.Financial Integrity and Ethical Standards

Financial Responsibility:

A Key Requirement Financial issues, such as a history of bankruptcy or embezzlement, can also be disqualifying factors.

The real estate industry demands financial integrity from its agents.

Ethical Violations: Non-Negotiable

Ethical violations in a professional setting can disqualify you from becoming a real estate agent.

The industry holds its members to high ethical standards, and any breach could be detrimental to your application.

3.Education and Training

Lack of Proper Credentials

A lack of education or training in real estate can also be a barrier.

Prospective agents must complete the required coursework and pass the licensing exam to demonstrate their knowledge and competence in the field.

Drug Test

Failing a drug test can have serious implications, especially in professional settings.

Failing a drug test
Drug test

Consequences of Failing a Drug Test for Real Estate Agents

  1. Legal Landscape Surrounding Drug Testing:
    • Federal Laws and Regulations: The Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 encourages employers to maintain drug-free workplaces but does not specifically require real estate brokers to conduct drug testing.
    • State Laws and Regulations: Each state has distinct rules regarding workplace drug testing. Some states, like California and New York, have strict privacy protections, while others, like Texas and Florida, adopt more lenient policies.
  2. Drug Testing Policies within Real Estate Brokerages:
    • While there are no specific regulations for drug testing real estate agents, brokers have the right to implement their own policies.
    • Pre-Employment Testing: Many brokerages require prospective agents to undergo drug testing during the application and hiring process.
    • Random Testing: Some brokerages conduct random drug tests to discourage substance use among agents.
  3. Consequences of Failing a Drug Test:

How to Pass a Drug Test

methods that may help you pass a drug test
 Can a criminal record completely disqualify me from becoming a real estate agent? 

Not necessarily. While a criminal record can pose challenges, it doesn’t always result in complete disqualification.

Here are some key points to consider:

1. Individual Evaluation

Each case is assessed individually.

The severity of the offense, rehabilitation efforts, and the nature of the crime play a crucial role.

2. Felony Convictions

Any felony conviction within the past seven years is likely to raise concerns. However, some states may have different rules, so it’s essential to check local regulations.

3. Misdemeanors Involving Moral Turpitude

Misdemeanors related to dishonesty or moral turpitude (such as fraud) within the past five years can also be disqualifying factors.

4. Transparency

Honesty during the application process matters. Disclose any criminal history upfront. Attempting to hide it can lead to automatic disqualification.

5. Appeals Process

If the Department of Real Estate (DRE) denies your license due to findings on your record, you have the right to appeal.

What if I have a financial misdemeanor on my record?

Having a financial misdemeanor on your record can impact your ability to become a real estate agent, but it does not automatically disqualify you. Here’s what you need to know:

Substantial Relationship

The Department of Real Estate (DRE) will review the misdemeanor to determine if it is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, and duties of a real estate licensee1.


You must disclose all criminal history during the licensure process. Failure to do so can result in automatic denial.


Each case is evaluated on an individual basis. The DRE considers factors such as the nature of the misdemeanor, the time elapsed since the conviction, and evidence of rehabilitation.

Appeal Process

If your application is denied due to a financial misdemeanor, you have the right to appeal the decision and request a hearing with the board.


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