First Time Applicants
Follow the steps below if you are applying for either an initial licence to trade in real estate or are returning after terminating their licence for two years or more.
Step 1: Meet the initial eligibility requirements
- be a minimum of 19 years of age;
- be eligible to work in Canada;
- be a Canadian citizen or have a Permanent Resident Card; and
- the successful completion of a high school education and proof of such (i.e. graduation certificate, transcript, post-secondary education certificate, diploma or degree) or an equivalency approved by the Registrar. View the Acceptable Equivalents to High School Diploma/GED Policy
View the Criminal Records Policy.
Step 2: Complete the Salesperson Licensing Course and pass the exam
To become licensed as a salesperson, you must first complete the salesperson licensing course which is administered by the Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS® (NSAR) and offered as a four-week in-class course or up to six months online. Contact NSAR to enroll in the course:
Students who require exam accommodations related to disability are responsible for:
- self-identifying their disability to the Commission;
- requesting specific academic accommodations; and
- providing comprehensive disability information, including medical evidence, in writing supporting each academic accommodation request.
The request must be made prior to registering for the exam, be in writing, and addressed to the Registrar. View the policy on Accommodation of Applicants with Physical and Mental Disabilities.
Students have one year from the day they finish the licensing course to pass the examination, administered by the Commission with a pass mark of 70%. Students have a maximum of two attempts to pass the licensing exam. Students who fail both attempts have one year from their last day of class until they can apply to retake the course.
Examinations are held twice a month in the Commission office. Students who wish to take the examination at a designated Access Nova Scotia office are subject to that office’s availability and will be contacted by the Commission directly with the scheduled date and time. NOTE: Access Nova Scotia offices are not available at this time due to the pandemic.
Those who pass the exam have six months to apply for a licence.
Step 3: Talk to Brokerages
The Commission recommends interview several brokerages to determine which brokerage is the best fit for you. Your licence application must be signed by the broker or managing associate broker of the brokerage with which you’ll be licensed.
Step 4: Obtain a criminal record check
The Commission has an account with MyBackCheck for applicants to obtain criminal record checks online for licensing applications. It is important for applicants to apply for their criminal record check through the Commission’s landing page to obtain a reduced rate of $33 plus tax. The regular rate is $55. Criminal record checks applied for through the Commission’s landing page will automatically appear for review in the Commission’s account.
To start your criminal record check application with MyBackCheck, click here for the Commission's landing page.
The Commission will also accept criminal record checks from the following providers:
- Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)
- Halifax Regional Police
- Municipal/town police
View the Criminal Record Check Providers Policy.
Step 5: Review and complete the Salesperson/Associate Broker Licence Application. Provide the application, fee and required supporting documents to the Commission
Carefully review and complete the licence application and assemble together the required original documents. Incomplete packages will not be accepted.
As noted in Step 3, your licence application must be signed by the Broker or Managing Associate Broker of the brokerage with which you’ll be licenced.
- A completed and notarized Salesperson/ Associate Broker Licence Application or Broker Licence Application and a Schedule A
- Your birth certificate/ permanent resident card/ citizenship card or certificate
- A government issued photo identification (provincial driver’s licence/ provincial photo identification card/ passport)
- A current original criminal record check from a provider listed in Step 4
- The successful completion of a high school education and proof of such (i.e. graduation certificate, transcript, post-secondary education certificate, diploma or degree) or an equivalent approved by the Registrar.
- All supporting documents must be in English (documents that are not in English must be translated by a certified translator).
- Payment in cash, cheque, money order, debit, Visa, MasterCard or American Express. Licensing fees are not prorated
In circumstances where an applicant is not able to provide certain required documents for reasons beyond the applicant’s control, see the Accepting Alternative Information to Required Documentation Policy.
Licence applications can be notarized in the Commission office. Applications can be submitted in person, by mail, fax or email:
Nova Scotia Real Estate Commission
601-1595 Bedford Hwy.
Bedford NS B4A 3Y4
If submitting an application by email or fax, you must mail your original licence application and criminal record check to the Commission.
If you have been denied a licence by the Registrar for unsuitability, you can apply to the Licensing Committee for a review of the Registrar’s decision. There is a $100 fee for this review, which will be refunded to the applicant if the review concludes in the applicant’s favor. View the Communicating Licensure Decisions Policy and Reviews of Licensure Decisions Policy.
Step 6: Purchase Errors and Omissions insurance and provide proof to the Commission
After you submit your licence application to the Commission you will be issued a restricted licence to obtain Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance. E&O is mandatory for all licensees in Nova Scotia and is purchased through the Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS®. Contact the NSAR at 902-468-2515 for further information on rates and how to obtain E&O insurance. Once proof of E&O is provided to the Commission (copy of the NSAR receipt), the restriction will be lifted and you may trade in real estate.