The Texas Legislature established the Texas Real Estate License Act (TRELA) in 1939 that details real estate license rules and regulations (Art. 6573a, Vernon's Annotated Civil Statutes, as amended effective January 1, 1996). This act also created the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC), the regulatory agency responsible for administering the act. The governor appoints the nine real estate commissioners (with senate advice and consent). The execution of the commission's responsibilities is conferred on a full-time staff under an administrator. Staff functions include application processing, education and examination, enforcement, administration, staff services and administration of licensed real estate inspectors, residential rental locators and residential service companies.
Step 1: Meet the personal and educational requirements
You must be 18 years of age or older, a U.S. citizen or lawfully admitted alien, and a legal resident of Texas. Effective January 1, 2006, you must complete the educational prerequisites for filing an application:
8 Semester (120 classroom) hours in Core Real Estate Courses*
6 Semester (90 classroom) hours in Core or related Courses**
14 Semester (210) classroom) hours TOTAL
*Core Real Estate Courses are: (i) Principles of Real Estate, 60 classroom hours MANDATORY, (ii) Law of Agency, 30 classroom hours MANDATORY, and (iii) Law of Contracts, 30 classroom hours MANDATORY.
Any additional classes may obtained by one of the following: real estate math, real estate brokerage, property management and real estate investment. TRELA prescribes the content of each of these courses. Also, please be aware that the Commission may not accept a core real estate course completed more than ten(10) years prior to the date of the applicant's transcript evaluation.
**Related Courses would include but not be limited to: other related real estate courses such as farm and ranch properties; real estate trends and problems; syndication; title and closing; construction; ethics; earnest money contracts; taxation; exchange techniques; various update courses in law, finance, TREC contracts and closings and those approved real estate trade association courses. (No two courses with same course title or content accepted.)
Note: A four-year bachelor's degree will substitute for the 60 classroom hours in Related Courses.
Step 2: Evaluation of Educational Documents
TREC requests all applicants for broker OR salesperson license obtain an evaluation from TREC of the education completed by the person prior to the filing of an application by the applicant. The Request for Evaluation of Education Documents form may be obtained from the Texas Real Estate Commission. P.O. Box 12188, Austin, Texas 78711-2188 or click here to download (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader). TREC requires a $20.00 fee, payable to Texas Real Estate Commission, accompany the evaluation form along with all of applicant's transcript(s) and certificate(s), or both, of required education. TREC will evaluate the coursework and return to the applicant an "Evaluation Letter."
Step 3: Make Application
You will submit your application for an inactive salesman license to TREC with $79.50, in the form of a Money Order or Cashiers Check, payable to TEXAS REAL ESTATE COMMISSION, along with the "Evaluation Letter" and ALL documents (additional certificates or transcripts) that TREC evaluated. A breakdown of the $79.50 is as follows: Application fee $69.50 and recovery fund $10.00. Upon completing an application for licensure, every candidate will receive a letter of eligibility from TREC with an identification number. This letter must be received prior to attempting to register for an examination. A Candidate Information Brochure will be mailed separately by the examination services provider or can be obtained via the Internet at www.psiexams.com.
Step 4: Take the state exam
The state exam is administered by PSI (Psychological Services, Incorporated) Examination Services, a national testing service, at 17 TREC Examination Centers throughout the State. Candidates may now schedule an examination location, date, and time by either calling 1-800-RE-EXAM (1-800-733-9267) 24 hours a day or using the automated registration system or by going online at the web site www.psiexams.com. Advanced registration and payment of $59 must be made with PSI Examination Services prior to taking an exam. The salesman examination covers two areas: Theory and Texas Law & Rules. The exam is computerized and you are notified immediately if you passed or failed. After the exam is passed, TREC will notify you via mail that you have been issued an "inactive" license.
Step 5: Obtain a Sponsoring Broker
The Texas law states that primary responsibility belongs to the brokerage firm with which the individual licensees are associated. The broker with whom you decide to associate will be selective. A responsible broker will not sponsor you if the broker does not feel the association will be mutually beneficial.
Your broker should provide ongoing educational support and encourage your professional development. When selecting a brokerage firm, you will also want to consider: advertising and market presence, community image, office facilities, public relations, manager's experience, support staff, listing inventory, training program, relocation business, referral network, and the office fees involved.
Your selected broker will then submit to TREC ($20 fee) the sponsorship request form, and your "active" license will be issued. At that time, you must pay the Local, State and National Association dues.
You're on your way to a challenging and rewarding career in real estate!
For further information, please call Lance Lacy at (325) 944-4663, or e-mail [email protected]