How to get a VA real estate license.
As the managing broker of Keller Williams Reston Herndon I am often asked by people how to get a VA real estate license or how to get started in the Real Estate industry. The answer to the first question is pretty straightforward. All potential Real Estate Agents must meet the requirements of the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulations (DPOR) and the Real Estate Board. To become qualified to take the exam you must meet the following requirements as required by Virginia code. You must have a good reputation for honesty, truthfulness, and fair dealing, and be competent to transact the business of a real estate broker or a real estate salesperson in such a manner as to safeguard the interests of the public. You will need to meet the current educational requirements by achieving a passing grade in all required courses, currently 60 credit hours. You will need be in good standing as a licensed real estate broker or salesperson in every jurisdiction where licensed and not have had a license as a real estate broker or real estate salesperson which was suspended, revoked or surrendered in connection with a disciplinary action or which has been the subject of discipline in any jurisdiction prior to applying for licensure in Virginia. In accordance with §54.1-204 of the Code of Virginia, each applicant shall disclose the following information:
- All misdemeanor convictions involving moral turpitude, sexual offense, drug distribution or physical injury within five years of the date of the application; and
- All felony convictions during his/her lifetime. Any plea of nolo contendere shall be considered a conviction for purposes of this subsection. The record of a conviction received from a court shall be accepted as prima facie evidence of a conviction or finding of guilt. The board, in its discretion, may deny licensure to any applicant in accordance with §54.1-204 of the Code of Virginia.
The applicant shall be at least 18 years old. The applicant shall have a high school diploma or its equivalent. The applicant, within 12 months prior to making complete application for a license, shall have passed a written examination provided by the board or by testing service acting on behalf of the board. In short, if you meet all of the requirements you will first successfully complete a 60 credit hour pre-licensing course, take and pass the Virginia Real Estate Salesperson licensing exam, complete fingerprinting and submit to the state to complete a background check. After this you can apply to DPOR for you Real Estate Salesperson license.
Now you have a license What’s Next?
The process on obtaining a VA real estate license is just the beginning of the journey to a career in real estate. After you successfully complete your real estate training and passed the state exam you will need to find a brokerage to work for. This is where it can become overwhelming and to be honest at times confusing. Not all companies are created equal and as a new real estate agent you will need a lot of support if you are going to be successful. According to the National Association of Realtors less than 20% of new agents last 2 years. According to Gary Keller, founder of Keller Williams, at Keller Williams offices nearly 50% survive for the first 2 years. The most important decision you will make when you first become a VA real estate agent is the brokerage you will affiliate with to start your career. Here are twenty questions that you should be asking any potential broker before you join their office.
What makes the difference?
Keller Williams is not just a real estate company but a training company first and is recognized as the number 2 training company by Training Magazine. By providing world-class training programs for real estate agents such as Ignite, Bold, and a philosophy of mentorship and coaching new agents with Keller Williams see a much higher success rate. 20 Questions to Ask Your Brokerage. It is critical that what ever brokerage you join as a new agent the it has well established formal training and mentorship programs to help you get started in a real estate career.
NAR’s article on “Do New Sales Associates Fail” attributes this to one of four factors.
- They don’t belong in the real estate sales business in the first place.
- They belong in real estate sales but don’t understand what the real estate business is about.
- They start their career with the wrong broker or company.
- They simply don’t work hard enough.
Lets look at these individually:
Some people just do not belong in the real estate business. The public impression of what it takes is not very close to the reality. Real estate is sales and it is about building relationships. If you do not want to work with people you should probably look elsewhere. Another misconception is that real estate is easy it is not. It is a business and if you do not run it like a business your will not last. Some will get their real estate license with the misconception that they will have great flexibility with their time. Successful agents work long hard hours building their business and servicing their clients. If you are not willing to work some evening and weekends then again you should look else ware. They belong in the business but fail to understand that it is a business. New real estate agents especially do not understand that they are running a business. They must set goals, develop budgets put into action specific strategies to obtain their business goal. They also need to understand that they must actively go out and seek business. With out leads you never will close a real estate transaction. They join the wrong company. What real estate brokerage you join is probably your most important decision you will make. The company you join needs to have support systems in place to train and mentor new agents. The company should also be a leaders in your local market. Most of the knowledge you need to learn after obtaining your real estate license will be the how to of generating leads, contracts, managing transactions and on and on. It is best to be affiliated with a leader in you market that has formal mentor and training programs available to you. They do not work hard enough. Unfortunately many real estate agents have entered the business with the misconception that they do not have to work hard. Like any business or job the performers are the hardest workers. They arrive early and often work late. They continually work to improve their skills and are rewarded for their efforts. Many real estate agents have the reputation or late arrivals and early dismissal the top producing, most successful agents work very hard. If you would like more information on starting a career in Real Estate CLICK HERE.