Frequently Asked Questions

Real Estate Continuing Education

Real estate licensees are required to complete 22˝ hours of Department of State approved continuing education every two years within their license renewal period. With the approval of various formats of distance learning options, it is now much more convenient for licensees who either do not have the time to make it to the classroom or simply cannot find a course available in their area prior to the expiration date of their license to complete continuing education requirements. Licensees can combine multiple learning formats–gaining knowledge through a classroom-style setting and a wide variety of CD ROM and Internet courses. The Bureau of Educational standards has approved a number of distance learning courses ranging from 3 to 22˝ hours on an array of subject matters.

The following licensees are exempt from this education requirement:


  1. Attorneys admitted to the New York State bar who hold a real estate broker license.


  2. Licensed brokers who have fifteen consecutive years of combined licensure as a salesperson and a broker and who are actively engaged in the real estate business as a real estate broker at the time of renewal. The burden of proof of fifteen years of licensure lies with the broker. Please note that the failure to renew a license on time will be considered a break in service and the "consecutive years" will begin again with the new license date. This means that the licensee will have to resume taking continuing education for another fifteen years.

The Department of State continues to conduct random audits of licensees to verify compliance with the education requirements. The course certificates received upon completion of a course should be maintained by the licensee and submitted to the office in the event the individual is audited. Failure to prove completion of the requisite education could result in a fine, suspension, or revocation of a license. To ensure compliance it is important that licensees understand the required number of hours of education and the time frame within which it must be completed.

The Department maintains a list of approved courses for distribution to the public. The schools along with their courses are categorized by county to assist the licensee in finding a location most convenient to them. To obtain a current list of available courses, please contact the Bureau of Educational Standards at (518) 486-3803 or send requests via e-mail to Please provide your name and current address and the list will be mailed to you.