Real estate sales agents must be knowledgeable about the real estate market in their area. To match properties to clients’ needs, they should be familiar with local communities, including knowledge of the crime rate and the proximity to schools and shopping. Brokers and agents also must stay current on financing options; government programs; types of available mortgages; and real estate, zoning, and fair housing laws. Real estate sales agents need at least a high school diploma. Sales agents must be licensed. To become licensed, candidates complete a particular number of hours of real estate courses.