Last-Minute Tips for Brokers and Leasing Agents to Beat the September 30 Renewal Deadline

Deadline Clock

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) previously announced that all professional licenses with expirations between March 30, 2020 and July 31, 2020 were extended through September 30, 2020. As a result, the deadline to complete post-license and/or continuing education was also extended through September 30, 2020. For real estate licensees, this change impacts Brokers (formerly 4/30/2020) and Residential Leasing Agents (formerly 7/31/2020).

The license renewal deadline for Brokers and Residential Leasing Agents is only weeks away. For those who have yet to renew their licenses, this can cause panic. But it doesn’t have to.

Follow the steps below to maintain your license. Each step offers tips on the fastest way to stay compliant (so you can keep working).

Complete Your Education

Brokers and Residential Leasing Agents in Illinois are required to complete education before renewing their license. The type and amount of education depends on when your license was issued. Find out the original issue date of your license using the IDFPR license lookup.

  • Brokers whose licenses were issued before 2/1/2018 require 12 hours of core/elective continuing education (CE). The specific CE requirements have changed for the 2020 renewal and include two new required courses: 4-Hour Core and Sexual Harassment Prevention training. All of Real Estate Institute’s CE courses are compliant with new education requirements. While live classes are permitted and remain available, online distance education is the fastest and most flexible option.
  • Brokers whose licenses were issued from 2/1/2018 – 11/1/2019 are renewing for the first time and must complete a Broker Post-License program (instead of continuing education).
  • Brokers whose licenses were issued after 11/1/2019 were issued licenses that expire on April 30, 2022. While renewal is not required at this time, there are compelling reasons to complete a 45-hour Broker Post-License program sooner, rather than later, including increased supervision requirements until post-license is completed.
  • Residential Leasing Agents whose licenses were issued before 5/1/2018 require 6 hours of core continuing education (CE). Those licensed after 5/1/2018 are exempt from CE because this is their first renewal.

Renew Your License

Most Brokers and Residential Leasing Agents know that they must pay the renewal fee to the IDFPR but are unsure of the exact process. Read the following for specific details about the renewal process:

  • After completing your required education, you may renew the license. The IDFPR license renewal fee is $150 for Brokers and $100 for Residential Leasing Agents for the two-year period.
    (Tip: This close to the deadline, it is important to find an education provider that will quickly issue your certificate of completion.)
  • The IDFPR strongly encourages Brokers to renew online. You may have received a PIN via e-mail from the IDFPR.
    (Tip: It’s not needed to renew. The license number, plus one of the following is needed to renew: Social Security number, date of birth or the IDFPR-issued PIN. A paper-based renewal form is also available to print with this information.)
  • Licensees who completed a change of sponsor or updated any of their personal contact information after 2/1/2020 may not be able to renew online. If you are unable to renew online, you will need to print a paper renewal form and mail it in with your payment. Mailed renewal forms must be received prior to the renewal deadline to be considered on-time.
  • Reminder: Renewing a license without completing the required education will likely lead to penalties or fees. Make sure your education is complete prior to submitting your renewal.
  • You can begin the renewal process by visiting the IDFPR website.

Real Estate Institute has been a leader in real estate education for over 25 years. Our team of experts is standing by to answer your questions about your requirements, our courses and the renewal process. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at 800-995-1700.


IDFPR Announces Managing Broker Transfer Application

Escalator down_Managing Broker to Broker License Transfer
Breaking News: The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation – Division of Real Estate posted a new form on its website that allows Managing Brokers the ability to transfer their real estate license to a Broker license.

Why now?

The unexpected release of this form (and the related process) is the result of efforts by the Illinois Association of REALTORS® to gain clarity on a process that has been part of Illinois real estate license law, but up until now not implemented by the IDFPR.

Buyer Beware

It may seem like the license transfer is a very desirable option for Managing Brokers who no longer need the additional benefits of this license type. However, as we noted in our blog post, “Can an Illinois Managing Broker Change Their License to a Broker License?”, there is no “undo button” if you decide to transfer your license. To become a Managing Broker again, you would need to have been licensed for two of the past three years, complete a 45-credit-hour pre-license course and pass the state licensing exam again. (You would need to do this even though you formerly held a Managing Broker license.)

If you crunch the numbers, you’ll find that the financial benefits of transferring your license would be minimal in the first two years. If you transfer from a Managing Broker to a Broker before April 30, 2015, you’ll be required to pay a license transfer fee now and complete core and elective CE. Then, you would once again have to pay a license renewal fee in 2016, when all Brokers renew their licenses.

How the License Transfer Works

Here are the specifics about the license transfer as noted on the IDFPR Transfer Application form.

  1. A Managing Broker license may transfer to a Broker license only if the Managing Broker license is currently in active status subject to the Department’s review and approval. Pending disciplines will be transferred to the new Broker license.
  2. Upon the transfer of a Managing Broker license to a Broker license, the Managing Broker license will be cancelled. To obtain a Managing Broker license after transferring to a Broker license, a transferee shall meet the requirements of a new applicant for Managing Broker as set forth in the Act and Rules.
  3. All Brokers must have a sponsoring Broker. If you are currently a self sponsoring Managing Broker, you need to find a new sponsoring Broker, complete the 45 Day Permit Sponsor Card, and pay an additional non-refundable $25.00 fee.
  4. All licensees required to complete continuing education (“CE”) shall have (i) renewed their Managing Broker license in the previous renewal period with the required CE and (ii) completed the following at the time of application: 12 CE credit hours, which included a minimum of 6 hours of Core CE as set forth in Section 1450.540(b)(3)(A).

Need Help Deciding What’s Right For You?

A license transfer is definitely the right move for some Managing Brokers. It’s crucial that you understand the pros and cons of this important decision. If you need help, call Real Estate Institute’s customer representatives at 800-995-1700.

Why Some Leasing Agents Are Paying for CE They Do Not Need

money funnel imageIt’s time for Illinois Residential Leasing Agents to complete their required continuing education. The two-year renewal period seems to come faster and faster every time. The good news is that Leasing Agents only need six credit hours of CE which is half the requirement of Illinois agents who hold a Broker license. The bad news is that some Leasing Agents are completing CE that they don’t need.

Here’s why.

  • Managing Brokers and property managers are telling all of their Leasing Agents that they need CE before July 31.
  • Leasing Agents are receiving e-mails, postcards and letters from various education providers that say all Leasing Agents need CE.

If your manager tells you that you need CE and you get an advertisement, shouldn’t you go ahead and do it? Not so fast. Here’s what you need to know. Not all Leasing Agents need CE.  Leasing Agents who were licensed during the current renewal period are not required to complete continuing education before renewing. These licensees completed a pre-license course and passed the state exam not too long ago, so they are exempt during their first license renewal. Although newly licensed Leasing Agents don’t have to complete CE, they still need to pay the renewal fee to the state by July 31, 2014. If you’d like to confirm your requirement, contact the IDFPR at 800-560-6420.

If you’ve renewed your Leasing Agent license in the past, you do need six credit hours of CE and, of course, you need to pay the renewal fee to the state.


Real Estate Institute has been offering real estate continuing education to Illinois licensees for over 20 years. Leasing Agent continuing education is available in a convenient self-study format. Leasing Agents may start CE today by immediately accessing the online course book.

Why Brokers Cannot Renew Their Illinois Real Estate Licenses

You’ve renewed your Illinois real estate license in the past, so you know it’s not complicated to complete the online renewal process at the IDFPR website. Why is this year different?

Brokers call our compliance experts every day with this question. As the April 30, 2014 deadline nears, the anxiety level for Brokers is bound to increase. We’ve uncovered one of the stumbling blocks to a successful renewal.

Follow these steps and you’ll be on the right track.

  1. Complete your 12-credit-hour continuing education requirement. Real Estate Institute offers last-minute CE. Click here for details.
  2. Print out this instruction sheet with tips from the IDFPR on how to pay by credit card.
  3. Renew Online. The IDFPR allows you to complete the entire renewal application and pay online.
  4. Track down your pocket card with your license number. Here’s where the problem lies. With the license transition, all licenses with the prefix “476” were eliminated and will not be accepted. You must use your new Broker license number, which begins with “475.”
  5. Decide which identifier you will enter (PIN, SSN, or Date of Birth) along with your license number.
Remember: your license number will start with 475, NOT 476
Remember: your license number will start with 475, NOT 476

6.  Once you successfully log in, complete the requested information and submit your $150 renewal fee to the state.

Remember, it’s important to renew before April 30 to avoid late fees.

What Every Broker Needs To Know About Post-License Education and Their First Renewal

It’s quite an accomplishment to complete the state-mandated 90-credit-hour broker licensing program in Illinois. You finish the coursework, pass the state exam and are ready to take advantage of the rebounding real estate market. But wait, did you know your license might be expiring soon? Time to check your pocket card for your license expiration date. Most Illinois real estate Brokers must renew their license by April 30, 2014. It seems like a long way off, but if you are a new Broker, you need to get started now to satisfy the education requirements for renewal.

Post-License, Not CE
If you are a new Illinois real estate Broker, you are not required to complete continuing education for your first license renewal. Many of your colleagues who have been licensed for a while will be completing 12 credit hours of CE. This is not the case for newbies. Instead, new Brokers must complete post-license education. Your subsequent renewal periods will require CE.

Plan For Post- License Now
The Illinois post-license education requirement is a 30-credit-hour, state-approved program. Post-license is a two-part course. You must complete the 15-credit-hour Post-License Topics course (self-study or live). You must also attend a 15-hour Applied Real Estate Principles course. This must be a live interactive class or webinar.

After you have completed the entire 30-credit-hour program, the state requires a proctored final exam. The good news is that there is no requirement to take another state exam … you’ll do everything directly with your school.  You will want to enroll for the courses now to ensure you have the education requirements completed before you renew your license at the IDFPR website.

Keeping It Simple
Real Estate Institute offers state-approved post-license education. Busy Brokers benefit from our simple, straightforward program. A combination of self-study with regular classes and webinars helps Brokers satisfy their requirement quickly. Find out why Illinois Brokers recommend that their colleagues complete post-license education with our school. Call 800-995-1700 or click here for more information.