IREC FAQ COVID 19
Frequently Asked Questions about IREC licensing during the COVID-19 Pandemic and Emergency Proclamations in Iowa:
1) I am applying for an Iowa real estate broker or salesperson license and I am unable to get fingerprinted at an authorized fingerprint service. Can I still get licensed?
A: Yes. In section eighty-two of the proclamation continuing the State Public Health Emergency Declaration (March 17th - May 27th), the provisions in 543B.15(9) are temporarily suspended, and real estate applicants can get licensed without the completion of a background check. The Commission recognizes that the ongoing COVID-19 health emergency has prevented applicants from completing this necessary background check, due to their inability to get fingerprinted at an authorized fingerprinting service.
Upon expiration of the proclaimed disaster emergency, Commission staff will reach out to licensees that are licensed without the completion of a background check and they will be given thirty (30) days to mail in a completed fingerprint card, along with the completed waiver forms. Licensees would have already paid the $51.00 for the background check, so there will be no additional payments due at that time.
Your application will be processed without the fingerprint card/background check.
All fees (background check and licensing) will apply.
Applicants must still answer all questions on the application and disclose any serious misdemeanor conviction, aggravated misdemeanor conviction or felony conviction (a conviction of operating while intoxicated [OWI] MUST be disclosed). A "conviction" includes a guilty plea, a deferred judgment prior to discharge, and a finding of guilt by a judge or jury. ALL convictions must be disclosed regardless of the date when entered or whether the criminal record has been expunged. IF IN DOUBT - DISCLOSE!
Upon expiration of the proclaimed disaster emergency, applicants will be given thirty (30) days to mail in a completed fingerprint card, along with the completed waiver forms.
2) I am applying for an Iowa salesperson license and my 60-hour real estate principles and practices course completion certificate expired. Am I eligible to take the real estate examination?
A: Maybe. In section sixteen of the proclamation continuing the State Public Health Emergency Declaration (March 17th - May 27th), the provisions in 543B.15(8) are temporarily suspended, and real estate applicants could be eligible to sit for the real estate salesperson examination even though their course completion certificate is older than one-year-old. The IREC’s examination administration, PSI, made the difficult decision to temporarily close their testing centers from March 19th until May 1st (I received an email on April 20th that this is still the plan). The Commission recognizes that the ongoing COVID-19 health emergency has prevented or could prevent applicants from meeting certain deadlines of
IREC COVID-19 FAQ | Updated May 7, 2020
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completing education requirements prior to examination for initial licensure for a real estate salesperson
For all 60-hour course completion certificates dated March 19, 2019 or later, the Commission has granted
a six-month extension for examination candidates to sit for the salesperson licensing examination (e.g.
the course completion certificate dated 03/19/19 can be used to sit for the exam and apply for a
salesperson license until 09/19/20). The Commission voted to grant this extension or relief until
December 31, 2020.
3) My license is set to expire on December 31, 2020. Do I need to renew?
A: Yes. There are no extensions granted for real estate licensing renewal. The renewal period for all
licenses that expire on December 31, 2020 begins on November 16, 2020. Your renewal application
should be available at that time when you login into My Iowa PLB. All renewal applications MUST be
submitted electronically through your account at "My Iowa PLB".
4) My license is set to expire on December 31, 2020. Can I take all of the required continuing education (36)
hours via distance learning?
A: Yes. In section seventy-nine of the proclamation continuing the State Public Health Emergency
Declaration (March 17th - May 27th), the provisions in Iowa Code chapter 543B and the provisions in 193E
Iowa Administrative Code, the requirements for in-person continuing education requirements are
temporarily suspended. The Commission recognizes that the ongoing COVID-19 health emergency has
prevented or could prevent licensees from completing the required 12 hours of continuing education that
is to be taken via live instruction.
Please click here to review the continuing education requirements.
193E—16.1(543B) Definitions. For the purpose of these rules, the following definitions shall apply:
“Distance learning” means a planned teaching/learning experience with a geographic separation of
student and instructor that utilizes a wide spectrum of technology-based systems, including computerbased
instruction, to reach learners at a distance. Home-study courses that include written materials,
exercises and tests mailed to the provider for review are included in this definition.
“Live instruction” means an educational program delivered in a traditional classroom setting or by
electronic means whereby the instructor and student have real-time visual and audio contact to carry out
their essential tasks.
Thirty-six (36) hours of continuing education are required, but the requirement that only 24 hours can
be taken via distance education is temporarily suspended for all licenses set to expire on December
The thirty-six (36) hours shall comprise of 8 hours of “Law Update”, 4 hours of “Ethics” and 24 hours
of Commission approved electives.
Please do not hesitate to contact Commission staff at firstname.lastname@example.org or (515) 725-9022, Ext. 8 if
you have any questions. Also, please be patient as the volume of phone calls and e-mails spike considerably
between the time period of November 16th – December 31st. Many questions may also be answered by visiting the
Commission’s FAQ page.