Yes, It is very important to carry your real estate agent license and to obtain it through the proper channels. If you do not, you may be subject to criminal and civil penalties.
It is an offense to act as a real estate sales agent without holding a license from the commission according to the real estate license act.
Let us look at this act in detail.
The real estate license act was made law in 1939 by Texas legislature. According to the act, the Texas real estate commission is in charge of administrating the rules and regulations for getting a real estate sales agent license.
The commission has its own rule-making authority to carry out its mission without anyone intervention.
All these administrative rules can be found in the Act of Texas administrative code.
The administration, rules, regulations, and authorization of real estate licenses are affected by the commission.
The governor appoints nine real estate commissioners to the commission with the advice and consent of the Senate.
To meet the agency’s responsibilities, the commission appoints full-time staff under the vigilance of an executive director.
The primary duty of the staff is to look after the requirements for obtaining, issuing, and renewing licenses for real estate inspectors, timeshares, residential companies, real estate license holders and right-of-way agents.
The real estate sales agent license is issued in three steps by the commission:
In the preliminary step, the applicant should apply to the commission for an inactive real estate license as part of the process of obtaining an active real estate license.
There is no need for a sponsoring broker at this stage. The inactive real estate license holder is not eligible to practice real estate.
In the next step, the inactive real estate sales agent license holder is eligible to practice real estate under the sponsorship of real estate broker.
During this time, the license holder should not accept any compensation or commission for any real estate transaction except through the sponsoring real estate broker.
In the final step, the applicant receives the real estate broker’s license, after actively participating in real estate for four of the five years preceding the application.
The applicant needs 3,600 qualifying experience points and must complete 270 classroom hours in the specific qualifying courses, and 630 classroom hours of related courses acceptable to the commission. Once the applicant completes all the steps then, he/she will be eligible to take the real estate broker’s license test. A four-year college degree is usually enough to satisfy the 630 classroom hours of education.
Therefore, it is very important for a real estate agent to acquire a real estate license to partake in real estate authorization activities. As discussed above, anyone who practices real estate without an authorized active real estate license may face both civil and criminal sanctions.
The civil penalties make the offender liable to the state for no less than the amount received or no more than three times that amount. According to criminal sanctions, the candidate may be punished with a Class A misdemeanor. With subsequent violations, penalties may become more severe.
There are a few Texas online real estate schools like RealEstateLicenseSchool.org, which help applicants in this process, from applying for an inactive real estate license to obtaining a real estate broker’s license. A school like this is the best route to make sure you are not missing anything and that you have the best chance for success.