A few years back, Texas tinkered with its real estate licensing act, and what occurred was rather amusing.
The fee for a broker's license was raised to several hundred dollars for a two year term.
The salesperson's license, on the other hand, was made half that amount, and continuing tradition, there was no requirement that a salesperson sit for and pass the broker's examination within a set period of time.
That caused an interesting dynamic:
First, salespersons had no motivation to become brokers.
Second, many brokers renewed their licenses as salespersons, to save the difference in the fee.
The smarter idea may have been to raise the licensing fee for becoming a salesperson to a significant amount, say $1,000 and then the renewal fees to have changed places with the broker's fee; say, $250 for a salesperson and $100 for a broker.
There seem to me to be two major faults in real estate licensing and requirements for Realtor membership, that have been perpetuated for decades.
- It is too easy to become licensed as a real estate agent, and too easy to qualify for Realtor membership
- In the main, salesperson licenses should be apprentice licenses, with a requirement that to continue, they must become brokers within a short period of time, say two years.
Those of us who have been in the real estate business for some years are delighted to have new agents join us, but those new agents need to quickly get up to total competency.
States' licensing and the National Association of Realtors need to do their part to make this happen.
BILL CHERRY, REALTOR