A career in real estate provides you great control over your personal growth, especially once you become a broker. A real estate agent cannot work independently and must always sign up with a licensed brokerage to jumpstart their career.
With an ever-growing real estate market in Texas, creating your own brokerage is naturally an attractive proposition. And why not? When you have the required experience and will to take charge of your career as well as the desire to help others establish theirs, you must strongly consider about taking the next step in your real estate career.
What is a Real Estate Broker?
A real estate broker is one step up from an agent in the property business. They continue their education and obtain their brokerage license. After they get their license, they can operate either independently or decide to hire their own agents.
Real estate brokers are primarily responsible for guiding clients in property-related transactions, being a seller’s agent for listing and advertising their properties, and conducting open houses for them.
While a broker can operate as an agent, an agent cannot work as a broker without passing the brokerage exam and obtaining a broker’s license.
Qualifications to Become a Texas Real Estate Broker
To qualify for a broker’s license exam, you must fulfill the following requirements. You have to:
- Be a citizen of the United States or a lawfully admitted alien
- Be at least 18 years of age or older
- Be a Texas resident, unless:
- You were licensed in Texas as sales agent or broker in the last two years, or
- Are a licensed broker in another state
- Must meet the Texas Real Estate Commission’s (TREC) requirements of honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity
- Consider requesting a Moral Character Determination before applying for the license
How Much Can Real Estate Brokers in Texas Make?
According to recruiter.com, a real estate broker in Texas takes home about $150,000 in salary annually. This is higher than what the rest of the private sector offers, about $145,287, and a lot higher than what the local government pays its employees, which is around $95,360.
While the State of New York is currently leading in terms of highest average income for real e-state brokers earning a figure of $137,480, Texas is also among one of the best paying states for the industry. Ranking number seven on the list, a real estate broker earns an average income of $89,120, which beats the national average of $59,039.
Real estate income within Texas varies quite a lot depending on the city you operate in. Although there is a lack of data for brokers, a city-wise salary study for agents in Texas shows that the ones in Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth make more than double of what a real estate agent in McAllen makes.
How to Become a Real Estate Broker in Texas?
In addition to the requirements listed above, a person interested in obtaining the broker’s license in the state of Texas has to take a TREC designed course and clear the final exam.
To be eligible, you must have at least four year’s active experience as a licensed real estate agent or broker during the sixty-month period preceding the application. Once you meet all those requirements, you can follow the steps below to obtain your license.
1. Complete Required Training
A total of 270 classroom hours are required to complete your pre-licensing education. The courses included at this stage are:
- 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 Contracts Forms (30 classroom hours)
- Real Estate Finance (30 classroom hours)
- Real Estate Brokerage (30 classroom hours)
The additional courses to meet the required hours include:
- Real Estate Appraisal (30 classroom hours)
- Real Estate Investment (30 classroom hours)
TREC requires all the candidates to take these courses.
The educational requirements don’t end here. To be eligible for your broker’s license, an additional 630 classroom hours in related qualifying courses acceptable to the commission or approved Continuing Education (CE) courses are a requirement as well.
The approved courses include:
- Real Estate Appraisal
- Real Estate Law
- Real Estate Marketing
- Real Estate Math
- Property Management
- Real Estate Investments
- Residential Inspections for Real Estate Agents
A bachelor’s degree or higher could satisfy this requirement if you completed your education from an accredited college or university. In this case, submit the copy of your college transcript awarding the degree to TREC after applying online or with the paper application as evidence.
2. Meet the Experience Requirements
As discussed earlier, there are certain experience requirements you must meet to obtain your broker license. There are primarily two requirements for candidates:
- You must have at least four years’ experience as a licensed sales agent or broker in real estate that precedes a period no more than 60 months to the filing of the application
- The experience must total 3600 points and must be recorded on the Qualifying Experience Report for a Broker License. This must also have a transaction identification list for all the transactions claimed on the report.
3. Apply to Become a Texas Real Estate Broker
Once you meet the educational and experience requirements, you can apply online for the license and submit the required fee. You can use your registered username with TREC or Texas Appraiser Licensing and Application Board (TALCB) to log in and submit your application. You can easily register on the same link if you don’t already have an account.
The application can also be submitted by mail. However, do not forget to provide basic instructions.
4. Pass a Background Check
Not everyone can become a real estate broker, especially if they don’t pass the background check. The law requires you to have fingerprints on your file with the Texas Department of Public Safety for the same purpose.
You can expect a delay in your application process if there is an ongoing investigation into your background. Prior notification is sent to the candidate if that’s the case.
5. Pass the Texas Real Estate Broker Exam
This is the final stage of obtaining your license. You must study hard and prepare for your real estate broker license exam well as you only get three attempts. If you fail the exam thrice, you are required to take additional education.
Once your exam is set, you will receive a notice with instructions for the exam schedule and for the process of obtaining your copy of the exam Candidate Handbook.
After Becoming a Texas Real Estate Broker
Once you have cleared your exam and received your Texas Real Estate Broker license, you may now start your journey as a real estate broker. You can now choose to work on your own, or employ a sales agent and expand your business to take full advantage of the wide open real estate market in Texas.
You must remember that while you can employ an agent to deal with clients as you manage the administrative aspect of the business, the ultimate responsibility of all transactions and legal elements fall on you as a broker.
You will still be earning big commissions, and if you have a real estate agent, you will have to pass on some of that amount to them as well.
Nevertheless, a broker gets to have a more significant share in the sales proceeds and also enjoys an authority on the business that no agent can match.