Bulletin 2001 V31-4
By Anita R. Burt, Education and Examination Officer
Changes in the Real Estate License Law effective October 1, 2000 provide new opportunities and incentives for licensed salespersons to upgrade to broker status. Most significantly, the broker license examination requirement has been eliminated for licensed North Carolina salespersons who complete the new 60-hour broker prelicensing course and pass the final course exam. As a further incentive for licensed salespersons to become brokers, the Commission will recognize completion of all three 30-hour Commission-approved broker courses that were offered prior to October 1, 2000 in lieu of the new 60-hour course, provided the courses were completed within three years of application filing. The Commission is pleased that so many salespersons have already accepted these new opportunities to gain additional education and become licensed brokers.
The new 60-hour broker prelicensing course is available through licensed private real estate schools and approved community colleges, colleges and universities. Students in the course use the Commission's newly published North Carolina Real Estate Manual for authoritative and up-to-date coverage of essential real estate topics. A popular aspect of the new course is its coverage of "Introduction to Commercial Real Estate Brokerage."
Newly licensed real estate brokers get a break on continuing education for the license period during which they obtain their broker license. Because new brokers are presumed to be up-to-date in knowledge of real estate law and practice, they are not required to demonstrate completion of the annual eight-hour CE requirement until their second license renewal.
With the license law changes effective October 1, 2000, the option that allowed a salesperson to take a broker licensing examination upon verification of two years' experience as a licensed salesperson has been discontinued in favor of additional real estate education for aspiring brokers. The Commission prefers and expects an overwhelming majority of salespersons wanting to become brokers to qualify by completing the 60-hour broker course.
Combinations of real estate education and experience in lieu of the prescribed broker prelicensing course may be considered only in rare instances where a broker license applicant possesses and is able to document exceptional levels of real estate education and experience not typically found among real estate salespersons. Applicants bear the burden of satisfying the Commission that their education and/or experience justifies a course waiver. Waiver of the broker course based on experience alone will require filing a formal application and submitting proof that the applicant has substantial total real estate experience, including experience in residential property management and commercial brokerage as well as in residential sales, and any such experience must be relatively recent. An evaluation of experience qualifications cannot be provided unless a salesperson submits a formal application and detailed documentation of his/her experience.
Further details about licensing options, qualification criteria, documentation of qualifications and a license application form are available in the information booklet, Real Estate Licensing in North Carolina, published October 1, 2000 and available free of charge upon request to the Commission. The booklet is also distributed by approved schools to their broker course students