Continuing Education

Continuing Education Q&A

When must I complete my Continuing Education (CE) each year?
The North Carolina Real Estate Commission requires that 8 hours of CE (Update & Elective) be completed each annual license period between July 1 and June 10. Sponsors are not permitted to offer courses for CE credit between June 11 and June 30 of each year to allow time to file reports with the Commission and for the Commission to process such reports. Thus, you will not be able to complete your CE requirement between June 11 and June 30 of each year.

Provisional Brokers and non-BIC Brokers must take the General Update course and one Commission-approved elective. BICs and BIC-Eligible Brokers should* take the BICUP (Broker-in-Charge Update) course and one Commission-approved elective. *A BIC or BIC-eligible Broker who takes the General Update course and an elective will maintain an Active license but will lose his/her BIC status/eligibility.

I attained my broker license this year. Do I need to take CE? What about Post-Licensing?
Post-licensing education should not be confused with Continuing Education. Post-licensing education is a one time requirement for provisional brokers wishing active license status eligibility that must be completed within the prescribed period of time after initial licensure. Click here for more information on post-licensing requirements.

Continuing Education is a recurring annual requirement for ALL licensees wishing to maintain active license status eligibility that must be completed each license period by June 10th beginning with the first full annual license period after initial licensure.

A broker newly licensed by examination or reinstatement does NOT have any CE requirement during the initial license period. Newly licensed brokers must satisfy the 8-hour annual CE requirement prior to the second license renewal in order to renew the license on active status. You can always contact NCREC to confirm your CE deadline at 919.875.3700.

I didn’t complete my CE during the required period. What happens now?
If you currently hold a license on active status but did not complete both a 4-hour Elective and a 4-hour Update course, effective July 1 your license will be placed on inactive status by NCREC. If you are a Broker-in-Charge (BIC), you will also lose your BIC eligibility and anyone under you who holds a provisional license will go inactive as well. Contact the NCREC Information Services division to confirm this at (919) 875-3700 (ext 772).

In order to be eligible for activation, you must:
1.  Complete the current year’s CE requirement in full, i.e., take the General Update and any 4 hour approved elective;
2.  Take either 1 or 2 approved electives to make up for the number of hours you lacked during the immediately preceding license year;
3.  Send the Commission an activation form (REC 2.08 – available online) asking them to return your license to active status and, if applicable, the name and address of the office where you will be affiliated.

If you are a BIC, you will then need to complete the Commission’s 12-hour two-day BIC course and file a BIC Declaration Form (REC 2.04) to reinstate your BIC eligibility. All must be completed in this specific order.

If you have any additional questions pertaining to your license status or BIC eligibility, you may contact the NCREC Information Services division as soon as possible at (919) 875-3700 (ext 772).

Can I file for an extension?
Extensions of time to acquire CE while continuing on active status will be granted only in those instances where a licensee is unable to obtain CE in a timely manner due to an extreme hardship which existed for a substantial portion of the license period. Examples might include a member of the military stationed overseas or a licensee with an incapacitating illness for a substantial portion of the license period. You should submit the “CE Extension Request Form” (REC 7.18) to the Commission well in advance of the June 10 deadline for CE.

How do I register for a CE course?
1. If you are an OBAR member, visit our website to log-on and register for courses and events online. Check out our YouTube video tutorial by clicking here for a step-by-step guide on this registration process.
2. Call the OBAR office to register and complete payment over the phone with an OBAR staff member.

How can I check my Continuing Education credits?
Log into your online license record to view your credits. To access your record, go to the Commission’s homepage ( and click on “Licensee Login.

I accidentally (or purposefully) took an extra CE elective. Do any CE credits carry over?
Only 4 elective credit hours may be carried forward to the next license period if no portion of the credit hours for the course were applied toward the CE requirement for the current license period. Thus, carry-over credit may be granted for extra elective courses taken, but not for extra hours in one course.

I wish to renew my license on INACTIVE status. What CE do I need to take?
If you do not plan to use your real estate license in the near future, you have the option to renew your license on inactive status.

-If your license has been on Inactive status for more than 1 year, and you have a CE deficiency in your license record, you will be required to complete the current year’s CE (the Update course and a 4-hour elective) plus either one or two 4-hour elective courses in order to be eligible to activate your license. These requirements do not change, regardless as to how long a license has been Inactive. Thus, the maximum amount of continuing education to activate a license is currently 16 hours.

-If your license has been on Inactive status for more than 2 years, and you have a CE deficiency in your license record, you will be required to complete the current year’s CE (the Update course and a 4-hour elective) plus two 30-hour post-licensing courses in order to be eligible to activate your license.

To verify the status of your license and to view your continuing education record, visit the Commission’s website ( and click on Licensee Login. If you wish to activate your license now, but you are unsure of the steps to take, contact License Services at 919.875.3700 or email

I completed my CE requirements but I didn’t receive a paper license in the mail this year. Is something wrong?
Beginning in 2018, NCREC will no longer mail printed paper license cards. To download your card, visit the Commission’s website ( and click on Licensee Login, then click View/Print Pocket Card. You may print this card, snap a picture on your phone to use at CE check-in, or request a printed card from the Commission for $5.00.

What do I need to do to become a BIC?
To qualify to declare yourself a BIC, you must:
1. Have an active broker license not on provisional status;
2. Have two years full-time brokerage experience (4,000 hours), or equivalent part-time experience, within the preceding five years;
3. Send the Commission the Broker-in-Charge Declaration form (REC 2.04); and
4. Take the Commission’s 12-hour Broker-in-Charge Course within 120 days of declaring unless the broker completed the course within three years prior to declaring.

Taking the Broker-in-Charge Course does not make you a BIC. It may help prepare you to become a BIC and you will be required to take it at some point, but you will not be a BIC until you send the Broker-in-Charge Declaration form (REC 2.04) to the Commission.

Do you have addition questions?
Please do not hesitate to contact the OBAR Education & Event Coordinator, Katelin Kight at (252)441-4036 or or the NC Real Estate Commission Information Line at 919-875-3700.

Basic CE Requirements – NCREC

  • You must complete eight (8) classroom hours per year of continuing education (CE) in order to renew your license on active status.
  • Four (4) of the required CE credit hours must be obtained by completing the Real Estate Update course prescribed by the Commission. The subject matter of this course will be changed by the Commission from year to year.
  • The remaining four (4) CE credit hours may be obtained by taking an elective course(s) approved by the Commission. Elective courses may address a wide variety of real estate topics.
  • The maximum amount of Continuing Education credit awarded for any single course is four (4) hours.
  • A person who is issued a broker license (either by examination, reciprocity or reinstatement) does NOT have to take continuing education courses during the license period in which the license is issued. However, they must satisfy the CE requirement prior to the second renewal of the license.
  • Beginning July 1, 2006, all brokers-in-charge must complete a four classroom hour Broker-in-Charge Annual Review Course each full license period after being designated a broker-in-charge.