What’s Next for Your Real Estate Education?
You’ve already reached a milestone in your career: you are a licensed realtor! Getting your real estate license required dedication and education. But now that you’re an official realtor, you can’t throw those two factors to the wayside. In fact, dedication and education will continue to define your career.
Continuing Education for Realtors
Getting your real estate license marks the beginning of an exciting career. To maintain your license, you’ll need to log continuing education (CE) hours on various real estate education topics.
It’s up to you to attend conferences or sign up for online training courses to meet the CE needs of your real estate license. Each state has its own hourly requirements and other criteria that you must meet in order to keep your license current.
You get to choose which courses are relevant to you. Continuing education gives you a chance to dive deeply into topics that will genuinely help you serve your clients and grow your business. For example, if you specialize in commercial real estate, you don’t have to choose courses on residential topics.
Attending a seminar or training course is not enough, however; you also typically need to pass a short quiz to verify that you understand the material presented.
Here are just a few sample courses or topics that you could sign up for:
- Home Inspection. What do home inspectors really do? Can you guide your clients in hiring a truly knowledgeable home inspector?
- Real Estate Exchange. What laws pertain to trading or exchanging properties?
- Environmental Concerns. What is sustainability, and what does it have to do with construction, landscaping and home improvement?
- Real Estate Appraisal. How are properties and buildings appraised in an ethical and honest manner? What are the signs of a poor appraisal?
- Fair Housing Laws. What legislation exists to protect homebuyers against discrimination? How can you avoid discriminatory practices in your own business?
- Real Estate Agency Relationships. Realtors partner with many different people, from home inspectors to appraisers to lenders and more. What are the best ways to maintain those professional relationships?
- Risk Management. What is risk management and how does it apply to the real estate market? Are realtors ever at risk for being held liable for damages or losses?
Other Real Estate Education Options
Being a realtor means being a businessperson. Knowing how to market your services online, in print and even face-to-face can help you build your network of potential clients. Although they may not count toward official CE credits for your realtor’s license, consider attending seminars or taking courses geared toward small business marketing.
Another option is to study for a real estate license in another state. Each state has its own real estate license board, and realtors need to be licensed to deal with properties in each state. If you live near a state line, you can expand your client base even further by being able to operate in both states.
The essence of being a good realtor probably won’t change over the years, but laws and recommended practices certainly could. Just look at the way social media and the Internet at large have changed the way realtors can market properties. Staying up-to-date with continuing education courses isn’t just the law, but also a good idea, plain and simple.