What high school classes or college courses should I take for real estate?

Day 11 of 30 – Robert Earl’s Prospective Agent Mentorship Guide – Digital Agent Show

If you are thinking about making real estate your career and are in high school you might have some questions about what classes you should take to prepare you for the real estate course. 

To be clear, no state has any requirements for specific courses that you have to take in high school to qualify for the real estate course.  The state requirements are fairly consistent in requiring the following:

  • A high school diploma or
  • A GED certificate

That being said, there are some classes that you can take that will better prepare you for your eventual career in real estate. 

Here are some of the classes you should consider:

  • Mathematics with a focus on percentages
  • Communications
  • Marketing & Advertising
  • Entrepreneurship (Sales and Management)
  • Graphics Design
  • Mathematics with a focus on percentages

A majority of the calculations required in a real estate transaction have the calculation of percentages involved.  And this is not just limited to the agent’s commissions.  

Tax calculations, mortgage interest rates, pro-rations and amortizations all include mathematical calculations with percentages thrown in.  

Some calculations involving surveys and lot sizes are also utilized, particularly when it comes to the number of square feet in an acre, a lot or a house itself.

In many cases, a third party, like a lender or settlement agent will perform the initial calculations but it is up to you to double check the work on behalf of yourself and your clients. 


If you are going to be a good agent you will need to be comfortable talking with a lot of people.  I have never known a successful secret agent.  Even in the era of emails and texting, communication is key and this also includes over the phone and face to face presentations.  I can not tell you the number of times that I have had to present to potential buyers or sellers, either in their living room, kitchen, the office or at the local coffee shop.  

The ability to listen, understand and communicate the information that you acquired to others involved in the transaction, especially when it comes to negotiations will be invaluable.

Marketing & Advertising

Any opportunity to you get to learn about how to attract potential clients to contact you is going to pay dividends for years to come.  Some schools offer business based courses that touch upon marketing and advertising.  

Honestly, this will not be required for the real estate class, nor will it be taught in that class.  It is something that you should learn from the brokerage company that you select.  

When they are teaching you about marketing and advertising, the focus should be on how you promote your business and brand and not just that of the company. 

Entrepreneurship (Sales and Management)

In my Senior year of high school I attended classes at the community vocational skills center.  It was there that I got my first exposure to sales and marketing and running my own business.

I did have to forgo some other electives in my earlier years of school so that I could save up a block of my schedule to be able to attend the center.   At the time, they didn’t refer to in as entrepreneurship, but looking back on it that was exactly what it was. 

Graphics Design

With social media as a pillar of advertising and marketing in the real estate industry, and exposure to learning graphics design will be an asset. 

From property brochures to social media posts, your ability to create clear marketing materials will be key to standing out from the crowd.  As a newer agent, being able to work on your own graphics will save you dollars as you get up and running. 

Some of these subjects may not be directly offered as classes with these titles.  It would be valuable for you to discuss this with your guidance counselor to determine which classes do fit this criteria. 

Some after school programs and clubs are also geared towards these subjects and would be valuable for you to explore.

These same types of classes could be applicable to the college level, although they are not required to become a real estate agent. 

In addition to the information and classes available in high school, reading books can unlock a world of knowledge for you, especially at a younger age.  

Some of the books that I would recommend for those interested in a career in real estate include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Rich Dad, Poor Dad
  • The Millionaire Real Estate Agent
  • Crushing it
  • The One Thing
  • The Miracle Morning for Real Estate Agents

Rich Dad, Poor Dad – Robert Kiyosoki

High Schools and the US education system do a terrible job teaching the financial system and how to think about money.  In this classic book, the author shares the financial advice that he got from his own dad (the poor dad) and the advice he got from his friend’s dad (the rich dad).  Read this book and you will never look at money, assets, liabilities or jobs the same way again in your life. 

The Millionaire Real Estate Agent – Gary Keller

The red book as it is affectionately known lays out the road map for how to go from being a new agent to becoming an agent to earning more than one million dollars a year after expenses by building a real estate business.   More top producers in the industry credit this book for their success than any other book ever written other than the Bible itself. 

Crushing it – Gary Vaynerchuk

Gary Vee as he is known online is a master at online marketing and social media success.  His book, Crushing it, shows you how to promote the most important brand that a real estate agent has, themselves.  Gary Vee is on my reading list, podcast list and YouTube subscriptions as a guide to navigating marketing and promotion in the digital age.  

The One Thing – Gary Keller & Jay Papasan

The book that finally taught me how to set goals that meant something in my life.  The concept of the clarifying question covered in this book is better than any class you could ever take in high school and it should be required reading for all students at the high school and college level. 

The Miracle Morning for Real Estate Agents

Being disciplined and following a schedule only comes easy to a few, select people.  The book Miracle Morning shows agents how to start their day the right way and carry this momentum throughout the entire work day.  There is a ton of practical advice in this book. 


There are not any requirements given by any of the states to take specific high school classes before signing up for the real estate course, but there are a number of classes or subjects that can assist you with your career.

In addition to these classes and subjects, reading best selling books can also give you a leg up on the competition when entering the real estate market as a new agent.

Add to this the training that one can receive from a brokerage company that specializes in actually teaching their agents how to sell real estate and you are well on your way to becoming a future millionaire real estate agent.

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