Your first goal in the real estate business is to pass the real estate agent license exam, hopefully on your first try. You'll eventually learn how to do the work from mentors and through experience, but first you must concentrate on simply studying and passing the exam. You can't do anything without that license, so focus on study guides, materials, and resources that are designed to help you pass the test.
Although you'll want to learn some basic concepts about state-specific ownership rights and laws for the long term, don't let this get you off track in the beginning. This exam does not test your ability to do the job of a real estate agent. It measures your ability to take a test and to make a minimum grade. You'll learn how to do the job on the job.
Be Selective in Taking Advice
If you're going to ask other agents what they remember about taking the test, ask those who took their exams in the last few months. Memories falter and tests change, so get the most current advice you can. A mentor might be helpful.
Check the Dates
Check exam training book dates. Again, tests change over time with business changes and this is designed to make passing on certain questions and answers more difficult. Look for published study guides that are current.
Study and Learn
You'll have lots of time after you have your license to expand your knowledge base and hone your expertise. For now, focus on locating study materials and courses that are designed specifically to help you pass.
If you're considering a pre-exam prep course, find out their first-time passing success rate. Some offer free retraining if you fail the first time around.
Read It, Know It, or Skip It
Mastering test-taking techniques will help you pass. A good test-taking practice is to answer the questions you know without getting bogged down time-wise on those you're unsure about. Many of these exams are given on computers now, and this usually makes it easier to mark and come back to skipped questions.
If you know the answer, give it. If you're not sure, move on. You might be surprised to find that a related question further along in the test will help you with the answer to the one you skipped.
Go through the questions once, answering the ones that you're absolutely sure you know and skipping any you're doubtful about. Then do the same thing again. After you've gone through the entire list, start over. Go back to the ones you skipped. Take only enough time to answer the ones that require a little thought but that you're pretty sure of after thinking it through. Skip the tough ones again and go to the end.
Then start again. Tackle the next level of difficulty...and so on and so on.
That Old Standby Advice
The old standby advice still works. The tried-and-true warning to get a good night's sleep and to arrive early and fresh still applies. Midnight oil rarely helps if it's the midnight before the test.