Should a person have to obtain an Associates degree before becoming a Realtor?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with INTEGRITY REAL ESTATE 19755

Good morning all,

This is the question that our state is pondering. Should a person have to obtain an Associates degree before becoming a Realtor?

Do you feel it adds anything or is it advantageous at all to require a degreeDoes being degreed add any value, does it make our profession better?

Please give me your thoughts.

This info is going back to some decision makers and since answers are coming from Realtors, it will matter--lets hope anyway.

Comments (31)

Laura Gray
RE/MAX Realty Group - Gaithersburg, MD

I think that the Real estate principals and practice course should be equivalent toward earning an AA degree and that the required continuing ed count as credit hours.

Then add the experience on the job as credit hours , add the Brokers and any other designated courses to acquire a Bachelors degree.

I always tend to think outside the box

Apr 16, 2009 01:27 AM
Bill Gillhespy
16 Sunview Blvd - Fort Myers Beach, FL
Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos

Hi Treva,  There is little connection between being a great gent and having a degree - none.  While I certainly support anything which would improve the quality of the people in our business ( I don't use the word " profession " ) this simply isn't the answer !

Apr 16, 2009 01:31 AM
Steve Hoffacker
Steve Hoffacker LLC - West Palm Beach, FL
Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor


I'm so glad that you asked this question. My answer is absolutely not. No way. No degree. Real estate sales straight out of high school (or whenever) and make more money than many with advanced college degrees. :)


Apr 16, 2009 01:43 AM
coletta ray


I do not think our profession is all about me, but more about the consumer and I feel the ethics of the person in the profession outweigh the education.  A sales person with ethics will do the education or gain the knowledge needed to be a professional and knowledgeable about their job. 
An educated person with any kind of degree can be unethical and give our profession a bad name.  Real estate is hard work and there are a lot of hard working and good agents that do not have a degree from a college, other than a college of hard knocks.    Thank you for asking!


Apr 16, 2009 01:55 AM
Melissa Grant
A Serendipity World - Greenbackville, VA
The Law of Attraction In Life & Business

Let's try this on for size :Recently, I was contacted by a gentlemen off of an ad I ran. He called and asked me how he could become a Realtor(r) ? My first question to him was : " Why do you want to be a Realtor(r) ? His answer was shocking : He said, " I am now a CNA, I want to make my own hours, I am tired of living paycheck to paycheck and I have heard a Realtor(r) can do what they want and they make a lot of money " ! You could have knocked me over with a feather when I heard his response.

The fact is all you have to do is take a course that you or anyone for that matter can do for you at home, pass the course, pass the test, pay your dues, fees and whammo your a Realtor(r). Anyone can become a Realtor(r) and that is why there are two many chiefs and not enough Indians ! And exactly why Realtors(r) have a bad reputation.

Upon passing your test and signing with a brokerage 9 times out of 10 you are thrown to the wolves. You are never taught what to say, what to do and honestly half of what I learned in those books did me no justice in the real world of Real Estate. There needs to be some sort of internship and business skills integrated within the courses of RE. This will benefit everyone. Consumers do not take us seriously because they know a few hours of classroom or home study landed us a certification in Real Estate. Many consumers believe their " life experiences " make them stronger at buying or selling their home than we do.

I am not sure a degree will help the RE Profession. Training and Experience will. Most Brokers do NOT offer training. They expect that you know because you passed a test. Needless mistakes are made because of this. I think something should be done. What is the question ?

Apr 16, 2009 01:57 AM
Ross Westerman
Kingwood, TX


 This is a very interesting post and comments.  It all comes back to the Broker.  Supposedly it is the Broker who is responsible for the agent/broker associate who is sponsored under the broker's license.  Brokers are not required to sponsor anyone, period.  Anyone can take the required classes and use college credits to take the test, pass it and get a real estate agent license but they cannot practice without sponsorship.

  It is only through a Broker's sponsorship that someone with a license can write an offer which may lead to a closing thereby actually practicing Real Estate.  An agent can only get a broker's license with OJT (actually writing business) in whatever time frame (Texas it is two years) as an agent before they can take the Broker's exam.

 It takes 990 hours plus the OJT to be eligible to take the Broker's exam.  I will say it again; it all rests on the Broker for the quality of agents out there the way the system is set up now.

Apr 16, 2009 02:10 AM
Ed Silva
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

The education might be nice, but definitely not necessary. The key would be the desirefor instant gratificationn. The more seasoned and professional a person is, the better their ability to handle the diversity of people you encounter in this business. Those real estate agents in it for the quick buck, panic and jump out real quick after a few months without a check. In the meantime, the Realtors keep on working and developing the business.

Apr 16, 2009 02:48 AM
Jim & Maria Hart
Brand Name Real Estate - Charleston, SC
Charleston, SC Real Estate

Absolutely not.  I don't feel that a college education would help our industry at all.  What would you be required to have degree in?  There is not degree for real estate, so could you go to school to be nutritionist and that would make you a better real estate agent than someone who's parents were in real estate and therefore they joined the family business right out of high school?  Plumbers and mechanics don't always have a degree, but they learn by doing.  That's how most of us have any clue about what's going on as well.  We learn by getting out there and dealing with the public, and we also learn what to and not to do by working with other agents.

Apr 16, 2009 02:50 AM
Chanda Barrick
Keller Williams Indy Metro Northeast - Indianapolis, IN
in referral

I have two associates and a bachelor's degree (and have considered a masters a time or two); however, I do not agree that having a degree whether it's an associates or bachelor's makes anyone more or less qualified as a REALTOR or in many other professions for that matter.  There are many people that have the piece of paper, but couldn't find their way out of a paper bag.  Then there are the individuals without the piece of paper who have skills and intelligence far beyond any average joe, but they can't get a job simply because they do not have a degree.  Not exactly fair in my opinion...  Just my .02...


Apr 16, 2009 02:54 AM
Wanda Thomas
Montana Homestead Brokers, Broker, CRS, GRI, SFR, RN - Billings, MT
Billings Montana Real Estate

At this point we have a long way to go be recognized as a specially educated workforce, we are much more the entrepreneur small business type.  A reputation is much more valuable than a degree.  I have another degree and license that I have retired from, Registered Nurse.  One question to ponder, would you want your nurse to be an entrepreneur?  We do have different levels of education and degree in Nursing, but we pretty much all pass the same test.

Apr 16, 2009 03:05 AM
Tom Boos
Sine & Monaghan Realtors, Real Living - Grosse Pointe Farms, MI
Providing the very best of service to Sellers and

No, I don't feel a post-secondary degree  should be required for obtaining a real estate license.  However, like many have said before me, we do need to require more initial and concurrent training to encourage more proficiency in our profession.

Apr 16, 2009 03:10 AM
Deanna Montz
Cornerstone Group Realty - Riverton, WY

I do not think that a degree is necessary! I do agree with most everyone else that we require more training and required education yearly!

Apr 16, 2009 03:18 AM
Matthew Rosov
Amerisave Mortgage Corporation - Laurel, MD
Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist

At first I was going to say NO.  There is plenty of training which is involved in being a Realtor or a Loan Officer.  Then I started seeing some of the comments with the misuse of certain words or even the total inability to distinguish between homonyms... I am beginning to think that perhaps some degree work or at least some advanced spelling, grammar and math courses should be taken.

Just let me know where to sign up!

Apr 16, 2009 03:25 AM
Mike Saunders
Lanier Partners - Athens, GA

Treva - I just deleted my several paragraph response. The short answer, NO!. However, I do feel that CE requirements should be a bit more aggressive.

Matthew - an associates degree provides no assurance that anyone will use the correct homonym (wow, I don't think I have ever used that word in conversation outside of a classroom). Perhaps we should require that our newscasters, politicians, and other media types correctly use the English language. My particular pet peeve is the disappearing adverb.

Apr 16, 2009 04:01 AM
Russel Ray, San Diego Business & Marketing Consultant & Photographer
Russel Ray - San Diego State University, CA

Only if the State can then charge some extra money to be a licensed Realtor in the State. There's no need to make Realtors get more education if the State can't get more money. LOL

Apr 18, 2009 02:40 PM
Larry Riggs
Century 21 Redwood - Frederick, MD
GRI, SRS Your Frederick County Specialist

    Actually I feel very strongly that it would be a total waste of time and money to require an associates degree to practice real estate. Frankly, there is a lot to learn but not two years worth. I am all for high CEC standards but if agents had to have a degree to list and sell there would be all sorts of filler courses as part of the curriculum that didn't apply to what we actually do. As I said, I believe in high standards but not wasted time and effort.

Apr 20, 2009 01:27 AM
Christina Morabito
RE/MAX Realty Team - Cape Coral, FL

Think of it this way-

If new agents want to be licensed, and have to undergo college to do so.  How many people do you actually think will do this?  Not many.

In return, the outcome is that there will be less Agents out there. More business for you because of that.

So I say, bring on the college! 

I also think that if they do that, then they should also hold the other agents that already have their lic. to do extra training as well.  CE more often to be able to renew lic. or something?



Sep 24, 2009 01:04 AM
Nick Good
The Good Home Team with eXp Realty - McKinney, TX

If you are a hard worker and quick at learning then I would say no don't get your AA.  I would love to see the Texas Real Estate Commission add some more requirements to at least obtaining your brokers license. 


As long as you have had your license active for 2 years and meet the minimum education hours then your are eligible to take the brokers test.  I believe you should have to sell a minimum amount as well to get some true experience under your belt.

Sep 30, 2009 11:59 AM
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

Treva:  As far as I have seen so far in the comments above... most of them are pretty self-serving.  I think it is ridiculous that one can get a real estate agent's license so easily.  Texas... where I am licensed... currently requires 210 classroom hours... seven courses... 30 hours each... to be able to qualify to take the real estate agent test.  That, as far as I know, is probably the highest requirement of any state.

That... in my opinion... is no where near enough.  I think an Associates Degree in Real Estate would be a good start.  I would of course grandmother/grandfather everyone who already has a license... but from here on out... no two year Associates degree... no license.  Period !

Treva... if I want to become professionally licensed to cut your hair, give you a perm, or color your hair as a beautician... I must go to school for FIFTEEN HUNDRED classroom hours.  That is roughly seven times what is required to sell your house.  That, in my opinion, is just plain nutz !

We want to be respected as Realtors, rather than be looked down upon ?  Well... then we need to earn that respect... and a good first step would be an AA degree.  As far as getting a four year degree somewhere down the road... well... perhaps for now, that should be a requirement for getting a Broker's license.

It is just plain ridiculous for me to be required to take 210 hours in Texas to sell your home, but need 1500 hours to give you a perm.

And... fifteen hours every two years of "mandatory continuing education"... they call it MCE in Texas... is WAY too little, too.  Maybe triple it.  That, too, would be a start.  I know it will never happen... but it would be a start.

Oct 27, 2009 05:07 PM
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

By the way... after re-reading the above comments... it is heartening to see that a few of you actually agree with me.  Thank you !

Oct 27, 2009 05:09 PM