If you want the short answer: it’s no.

But if that is the case, why are so many new investors signing up for real estate classes and earning their licenses before doing anything else? Here are a few reasons:

Access to the MLS
While it’s definitely possible to find investment properties through wholesalers, driving through neighborhoods looking for ‘For Sale’ signs, and connections through family and friends, the MLS is an invaluable resource. Getting your real estate license means you have access to this extensive database, allowing you to not only find investment properties, but also list them when you’re ready to sell

Having your license also means you can gain access to almost any vacant property to check it out, and you don’t have to wait for a real estate agent to let you in (because you are one!) If the home isn’t vacant, you can schedule a tour of the home without having to schedule it with an agent. 

More Control, More Money
Real estate investors typically like the freedom to make their own decisions and work on their own schedules. They usually have a clear vision of what they want and specific methodologies and processes to help them achieve their goals. While they can be excellent team players, they also enjoy the freedom and control that comes with working on their own. For these investors, having a real estate license means not having to go through another person to make critical decisions. It also means not paying a commission on properties bought and sold, which means more money in their pockets.

If you’re the “I’ll just do it myself” type, having your real estate license means you interact with everyone involved in the purchase and sale of an investment property on your own. You deal directly with lenders, inspectors, appraisers, attorneys, contractors, and others. The marketing, the showings, and the sales strategies are all up to you. For some, this is a lot of pressure. For others, it’s the ideal work environment.

Things Get Done Faster
Another reason so many investors are getting their real estate license is that they understand that time is money. And when you don’t have to filter all of your decisions through a real estate agent, things get done faster. As an agent, you’ll be the first to know when investment properties hit the market and can get ahead of investors who don’t have access to this information. 

But is it Necessary?
Some investors choose not to get their license for a variety of reasons. Some feel overwhelmed at the idea of finding a real estate school in their area and spending hours studying for a pretty difficult exam. (Thank goodness for online classes, right?!) 

There are also licensing fees and exam fees to consider, along with the cost spent annually to maintain your license. Some investors aren’t willing to spend money on classes when they aren’t necessary for investing. 

The Takeaway
You can be a successful real estate investor without getting your license. But if you’re serious about being a leader in the industry, most seasoned investors would encourage you to put the time and money into earning your real estate license and taking real estate classes so you can step into the world of real estate investing with all of the tools at your disposal. 

Click here to see how easy it would be to add a real estate license to your investor’s toolbelt.