12 Mar How to Start a Career in Real Estate in Texas
Texas is a gigantic state full of massive opportunities for new real estate agents. According to the most recent census, of the 15 fastest growing cities nationwide, 7 of them are in Texas. Those cities include McKinney, Frisco, Odessa, Pearland, Cedar Park, Georgetown and San Marcos. This explosive growth rate is great if you’re in the business of selling houses because demand is only going up, which means now is the best time to get your license and begin selling clients the house of their dreams.
If you hope to lead a successful career in real estate, there are a few things you need to know to get started. Every state has different requirements for real estate certification, and in Texas, there are specific rules to follow like any other state. To make understanding those guidelines as simple as possible, follow this guide to learn how to start a career in real estate in Texas and learn some trade secrets.
How to Become a Real Estate Sales Agent in Texas
The Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) published an exhaustive list of requirements on their website, but I’ve added some helpful tips to get you connected to the resources you’ll need to complete them.
You must be…
- A citizen of the United States or lawfully admitted alien
- Over the age of 18
- A resident of Texas (meet residency requirements)
- Meet the TREC’s qualifications for honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity
- Complete Your Qualifying Education (180 classroom hours of the following qualifying real estate courses)
- Principles of Real Estate I (30 classroom hours)
- Principles of Real Estate II (30 classroom hours)
- Law of Agency (30 classroom hours)
- Law of Contracts (30 classroom hours)
- Promulgated Contract Forms (30 classroom hours)
- Real Estate Finance (30 classroom hours)
- File Your Application and pay your application fee
- Get Your Fingerprints taken and pass a background check
- Here’s how to do it right the first time.
- Take the exam with PearsonVUE
- You get three chances to take and pass the test. After that, you’ll need to take additional education before you test again.
- Find a sponsoring broker
- Find an active broker to take you under their wing and sponsor you. Even after you complete the requirements above, you’ll only have an inactive license until you obtain sponsorship, at which time the Texas Real Estate Commission will issue you an active Sales Agent license. You can request a sponsor using TREC’s Online Licensing Service.
Keep in Mind…
- You only have one year to complete all of your requirements from the date your application is filed.
- Education course completion documents must be submitted to TREC after applying online or with your paper application, not before.
- To meet TREC honesty and integrity qualifications, consider requesting a Moral Character Determination before applying for the license.
Things They Don’t Tell You
Finding a sponsor is the most important step
Who you decide to take on as your mentor and confidant throughout the beginning of your real estate career will impact your growth tremendously. Not only do you want a sponsor that comes from a good office with resources, but one who can provide you leads and training opportunities. Look for someone who has successfully sponsored before.
Have savings in the bank before you begin
As you probably know, you won’t be making money until you close sales, which means you’ll need to have leads, be showing houses, spending lots of time with clients and building relationships long before you see any money. If you plan on switching to do real estate full time, you will need to have money saved to support you until you get rolling.
Budget for additional costs
Paying for the coursework and splitting your commission with your broker are obvious fees, but wait, there’s more! Outside of those, you’ll need to factor in the fees that go with any organizations/associations/groups you are a part of. For example, you might pay fees to a local realtor association and access to the local Multiple Listing Service. It doesn’t matter which brokerage you choose; these fees are paid regardless.
Understanding your market will take you far
Top-earning real estate agents have one thing in common: They know their local real estate market. Beyond the official requirements and formal information you’ll learn throughout your coursework, you need to understand your local market to understand what potential buyers want. Say you’re working as an agent in El Paso. Your clients will frequently ask you questions like:
Knowing your city and neighborhoods within your service area will help you earn trust with your clients, get referrals from happy clients, and come out ahead as a real estate professional in your market.