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TREC: New Year Brings Big Changes for Broker Applicants

At its October meeting, the Texas Real Estate Commission adopted rules that change the requirements to obtain a real estate broker license in the state of Texas effective January 1, 2012. Amendments to the rules driven by the passage of Senate Bill 747 establish requirements for “active experience” to qualify for a broker license.

The Commission approved these changes to strengthen the qualifications for becoming a broker in Texas. In the past, in addition to certain education and examination requirements, two years of “active” status as a sales agent were needed to qualify for a broker license, regardless of whether the sales agent had gained any actual experience during the two year period. As of January 1, an applicant for a broker license will need to have four years of “active experience” to apply for a license. A point system will be used to quantify active experience in real estate transactions. Broker applicants will be required to document that they have obtained at least 3,600 points of active experience with evidence of specific transactions and a verification statement from the applicant’s sponsoring broker at the time the experience was earned. A complete explanation of the point system may be found on the Commission’s website.

Administrator Oldmixon echoed Chair Wukasch’s sentiments by stating, “As a result of these rule changes, consumers in the state of Texas can be more confident when working with real estate brokers in the future. These new requirements will ensure that real estate brokers will have the broad based knowledge that comes from transactional experience.”

An applicant must document experience in each of four years out of the five-year period immediately before the application is filed, or be able to satisfy these requirements by the end of one year after the application is filed. While an applicant has up to a year after filing an application to meet all education and experience requirements, an applicant cannot take the broker examination until all education and experience requirements have been met.

Under these rule changes, as of January 1, a previous broker license holder whose license has been expired more than two years may only apply for reinstatement of the license if the applicant meets all the new requirements to apply for a broker license as described above. If these requirements cannot be met, the applicant must apply for a salesperson license.

True to its core mission, the Real Estate Commission continues to protect and serve the citizens of Texas. The Commission’s programs of education, licensing and regulation ensure that real estate service providers are competent and trustworthy. More information on the Commission and its programs may be found at www.trec.texas.gov.

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