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Is it too easy to become an agent?

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Real Estate Professional | 08 Oct 2014, 09:08 AM Agree 0
Are the days of brokerages accepting any agent with a license and a pulse numbered? Several Toronto-area players hope so, calling on big-name brokerages to do more to weed out bad agents.
  • lolno | 08 Oct 2014, 11:54 AM Agree 0
    Unless the brokerages start to hire agents as salaried employees, with benefits, then they have no real incentive to discriminate on orea grades. I'm sure many "bad" agents are more than capable of getting high grades anyway. Many agents fear competition but at the end of the day a bad agent won't be in business for too long so they shouldn't worry about them.
  • Sacha | 08 Oct 2014, 12:14 PM Agree 0
    First of this blog was poorly written! I can tell the author was just venting out on agents and has no clear vision. Honestly, do you really co-relate good "grades" to be a successful "agent"? Seriously?

    Any 18 year old would outpaced a 35 year old with profession when it comes to licensing and passing exam! The younger you are the more you can comprehend on reading and passing the exam that does not mean that he can out perform a 35 year old with a management experience who is looking for a career change.

    The onus is not on the grades but on the person themselves. So if you really want to tighten up the industry hire somebody that had a good resume from other profession..somebody that years of experience in management, customer service. Hire somebody that has responsibility, somebody that has mortgage to pay and family to feed. Those are the people that will take the job seriously and not somebody that can attain a good grades.

    Being a full time agent and part time agent also has no difference. I have seen other professionals with career doing real estate aside and they can do excellent service because they control their hours, they work from home and do not need to be in the office which gives them time to do real estate aside.

    MAYBE THIS BLOG SITE NEEDS TO FILTER AND GET BLOGERS THAT HAS SOME CREDIBILITY!
  • Kelvin | 08 Oct 2014, 12:33 PM Agree 0
    My wife and I are both agents. In the last year we have found the quality of agents to have really slipped. They cannot write up a proper offer so you must make tons of corrections in your signback. They don't comprehend expiry dates - and in some cases we wonder how did this person ever pass the exams to become an agent. That is where I lay the blame. Not on the brokerages but upon OREA creating too many new agents, and poor ones at that. We need less agents not more. Stop creating new ones.
    Kelvin
  • RICHARD | 08 Oct 2014, 12:36 PM Agree 0
    I DISAGREE WITH THIS COMMENT. ITS NOT BECAUSE SOMEONE DOES NOT GET ABOVE 90% IN ALL ITS COURSE THAT IT MEANS HE HIS NOT A COMPETENT AGENT. ITS THE WAY THE PROVINCIAL ASSOCIATION AND THE BROKERAGE TRAIN ITS AGENTS. I HAVE SEEN IT TO MANY TIMES. AGENTS COMING FROM ALL KINDS OF BACKGROUNDS THAT DECIDES TO MAKE A CAREER IN REAL ESTATE WITH ABSOLUTELY NO KNOWLEDGE OR A MINIMAL KNOWLEDGE OR CONCEPT OF HOW A BUILDING IS CONSTRUCTED OR MINIMAL BY LAW WITHIN MUNICIPALITY. REAL ESTATE COURSES PUTS ACCENT MORE ON THE LEGAL SIDE THEN ON THE KNOWLEDGE SIDE OF SELLING OR BUYING A PRODUCT IN THIS CASE IS THE MOST EXPENSIVE INVESTMENT A PERSON WILL DO IN HIS LIFE . WHEN I TOOK MY COURSES MORE THEN 10 YEARS AGO 95% OF THE PEOPLE IN THESE COURSES ADD ABSOLUTELY NO KNOWLEDGE OR CONCEPT OF THE CONSTRUCTION OF A HOUSE, COMMERCIAL BUILDING, BARN, SHED, SEVERANCE PROCESS, A INDEXATION OF A PROPERTY, HOW PLUMBING OR ELECTRICAL WORKS, WHAT DIFFERENT ROOF PITCHES WERE, KIND OF WINDOW, WHAT IS THE DIFFERENT R VALUES OF BLOWN INSULATION COMPARE TO CELLULITE AND SO ON.. I HAVE HAD AGENT REPRESENTING SELLERS OR BUYERS WHO HAD MORE EXPERIENCE THEN ME IN YEARS OF SERVICES COULD NOT ANSWER A SIMPLE QUESTION RELATING TO THE HOUSE AND I HAD TO EXPLAIN EVERYTHING TO THEM AND THEN HAVE THEM TELL ME "I HAD NO IDEA THIS COULD HAPPEN!!! WE ARE IN A INDUSTRY THAT WHEN A CLIENTS ASK US SOMETHING WE SHOULD HAVE THE MINIMAL TO A BASIC KNOWLEDGE OF THESE ISSUES. THEY WANT ANSWERS KNOW, NOT IN 3-4 DAYS OR I WILL GET BACK TO YOU!!! ATTITUDE.. TO ME THE REASON THIS QUESTION COMES UP IS FROM, THAT THE MARKET IS SATURATED WITH TOO MANY AGENTS AND THE PROBLEM IS NOT WITH AGENTS ITS WITH THE PROVINCIAL ASSOCIATION.. THERE IS NO QUOTA SET UP TO ACCEPT NEW AGENT.. ITS LIKE A BUISINESS YOU REQUIRE 5000 PEOPLE TO DO THIS JOB BUT YOU HIRE 10,000 GET IT DONE QUICK MAKE AXTRA DOLLARS!!! THEN THEY TELL YOU ITS TIME TO RENEW YOUR LICENCE AND IF YOU CAN'T AFFORD ITS OK ! SOMEONE ELSE WILL TAKE YOUR SPOT IN THE PIPELINE ... THAT IS THE TRUTH ESPECIALLY IN MEGA CITIES...

    I AM FROM A SUBBURB AREA AND WE ARE SEEING MORE AND MORE CITY AGENTS SIGNING UP WITH US BECAUSE OF THIS TREND, TO MANY INVENTORIES FOR HOUSES IN THE $400,000 -$500,000 NO MORE BUYERS FOR HIGH PRICE HOMES LETS GO WHERE HOUSES ARE SELLING WITH BUYERS WHOM CAN AFFORD $280,00- $350,000 BUT THIS MEANS MORE TRAVELLING FOR THEM AND IT MAKES IT MORE CHALLENGING FOR THEM.. COURSES NEED TO EMPHASISE ON TEACHING NOT JUST THE LEGAL SIDE OF REAL ESTATE BUT THE REAL COMMINTMENT,THE EXPENSE,THE CHANGE LIFESTYLE THAT CAN BE GREAT FOR SOME BUT DISASTROUS FOR OTHERS COMMISSION CAN BE CUT SO MUCH THAT EVENTUALLY YOU CANT AFFORD TO PAY YOUR BILL BUT THE BROKERAGE DON T CARE AS LONG YOU PAY YOUR MONTHLY EXPENSES, ADDS ECT... ... THAT IS THE REAL REASON THIS IS POPPING UP NOT BECAUSE OF HIRING NEW AGENTS WITH A AVERAGE OF 90 % GET REAL !!!!!!!!

    THANKS FOR SHARING
  • EN, Broker | 08 Oct 2014, 12:42 PM Agree 0
    For the brokerages it is just a numbers game - the more agents, the better the bottom line. Its that simple and as a business, that is what brokerages must do. It is OREA's job to make obtaining a license more difficult. Make a university degree a must or make becoming a realtor a 4 year university course. We are carry the same liability to do a proper job as a lawyer. Why shouldn't the agents be required to obtain similar education. What about co-op jobs at brokerages a requirement? Currently, not only do new agents have no clue about laws and ethics, but they have absolutely no idea how to make a buck in the industry. Now, the difficult part will be to convince TREB, OREA, CREA and RECO to agree to this. They are a mafia that make cash on memberships and courses. The more people they shove through the door, the more money they make. They have absolutely NO interest in making the industry better.
  • Yvonne | 08 Oct 2014, 01:11 PM Agree 0
    I agree that our industry needs to tighten the criteria for licensing; I also agree that placing exam-passing grades as a primary criteria is not going to solve the problem, although I do believe the passing score should be higher than it is currently.
    Global Human Resource researchers and many corporations have developed psychological testing to determine many aspects of a person's character and personality, certain of which we could employ. A very likeable person with a charming personality can have a 'character' most unsavoury.
    I don't believe in the premis that we accept the unsavory types because they won't last in the business. My twenty-seven years as a REALTOR has convinced me this is not necessarily so. I know 'forked-tongued' REALTORS who have constantly made hundreds of thousands, in some case millions of dollars a year for decades, but I wouldn't recommend them to my worst enemy, were I to have one. Also, why do we sit on our hands and watch those same REALTORS ruin our reputation and cause who knows what upset to how many members of the public in the process?
  • Robert, Agent | 08 Oct 2014, 02:05 PM Agree 0
    I'm afraid OREA is simply just another business...out to make money. If their classroom chairs were empty, they would definitely not be in business. How many chances would a surgeon get to fail exams before they disqualify them for good. OK, so our profession is not life or death. But my point is, most other industries have a standard and at some point you at LEAST have to speak the language functionally and write an offer as the individual above mentioned. And don't get me started on the part timers who are too afraid to jump in with both feet. If their whole heart and head is not in it, how are they capable of protecting the client? I believe there should be a disclosure form to this affect.
    RECO needs to raise the bar. I say a minimum of post secondary education. Not pottery 101 credentials.
  • Hmmm | 08 Oct 2014, 04:57 PM Agree 0
    I agree completely with the post by EN. For brokerages, agents are simply a commodity, and the more they can push though (i.e. hire), the more sales they can generate and the more money they stand to make. The changes have to come from the governing body and filter down to the brokerages. Three courses, with little or often without any industry or real estate experience, and people are expected to be competent enough to help buy/sell other people's biggest asset. It makes no sense. The qualification period should be longer, whether that's 3 or 4 years at a university/community college and lead to a degree/diploma. There should also be a training/co-op period where brokerages and/or existing agents have to train new agents followed by another test after this period. If brokerages were on the hook to pay new grads during this time, perhaps repaid through future earnings or some other means, they would be more selective in their hiring process. That being said, there is no magic solution, and as with any other line of work/profession, there will be good and bad, including agents who are already in the business.
    OREA/CREA etc. also have to find a way to limit the number of entrants and shed their addiction to tuition and other fees. Not sure how, but I think it needs consideration, especially with the potential consequences. When I took the courses, I had a full time job and took classes in the evening or weekends and got my license fairly quickly, the same as most. If the process was different, I may have thought otherwise about this career path. In my classes, we mostly had people like me, embarking on their 2nd or 3rd careers. But we also had high school graduates who had never worked before, and people that clearly had no business/real estate/real life experience/knowledge of any kind. They were usually the ones bragging about the millions they were going to make selling houses.
  • Maxy | 09 Oct 2014, 01:26 AM Agree 0
    Thanks Kelvin for your insightful comment. I have come across other professions where the first comers' goal is simply to shut off new comers. It is all about protecting their privileges and not about professionalism. Real Estate is not about grades. My advise to any agent, new or long standing, who laments that there are two many agents is "quit" first and that "too many" will be minus 1. We all know that the top selling agents are not necessarily the first class honors graduates. Any one who feels entitled to a profession should keep the sentiment to himself. The industry is big enough to accommodate all honest and hardworking agents.
  • Maxy | 09 Oct 2014, 01:39 AM Agree 0
    It is interesting how many bloggers are clamoring for tightening of entry requirements. My question to them is - Why did you not find it fit to complain when you wrote the "too easy" certification exam or are you suggesting that the entry requirements are wishy-washy now compared to when you joined? Let us get real and be honest.
  • | 09 Oct 2014, 01:44 AM Agree 0
    The answer to your question is that it is not easier than when you became one.
  • Hmmm | 09 Oct 2014, 02:10 AM Agree 0
    Maxy - you have made some fair comments. However, please remember that every other licensed profession (electricians and plumbers to teachers, doctors and lawyers) has "evolved" in their licensing criteria and requirements. That's just progress, and real estate salespeople should be no different. As I said in my earlier comment, I may have re-thought the career path if there were stricter barriers to entry.
  • Trudy | 09 Oct 2014, 11:18 AM Agree 0
    I understand the frustration . However, I don't believe the problem you are addressing has anything to do with intelligence or marks. I believe it has more to do with morals -some people have a different set of morals for business and in some cases no morals at all and a lack of a work ethic. How would you propose regulating that? This is not something easily determined in an interview but something which becomes abundantly obvious with time. This is a time when the broker of record could take action and ween out those 'unacceptale apples' I should think
  • Michael | 09 Oct 2014, 12:56 PM Agree 0
    The Best agent offten is not the best in class, market itself will elliminate people who got to Real Estate by accident, competition let you stay on the edge, remain sharp and awake. We always forget that we are the salespersons first and agents after, clients wants agent to help them to buy or sell their dream home and it's only result they expecting from you. We have to know how to fill up papers and someone will be always better than you in drafting offers, hire that person. Some agent become masters in drafting documents some in selling homes. Eventualy agents will lose few sales because of competition. Increasing boards fees by 30% will make disappear many of those who selling uncle's or cousin's home. it's not the number of agent that hurts all of us, but luck of anti-dumping policy and unwillingness of authorities to regulate the process of Real Estate transactions and marketing in a way that will protect career of those who wants to become an agent and selling homes for remuneration and who can not do it without being the memeber of OREA, CREA, OACIQ etc.
  • Nelson | 09 Oct 2014, 03:56 PM Agree 0
    Maybe brokerages should cut part-timers after six months. If they can' stand on their feet doing real estate without quitting their full time job after six months. They're out. Like a probationary period. It would weed out quite a few who just dabble.
  • jack | 10 Oct 2014, 08:03 AM Agree 0
    The first step is making getting the license more challenging... Including and not limited to having a minimum of a grade twelve education from a recognized secondary program.

    There should also be a real period of apprenticeship. One where you have to work and report to a senior member of the profession... Just like in many other professions...

    The next step is find a way to put an end to the massive cheating that goes on at the OREA testing centres. The joke is that everyone can get a license...

    And finally, abuse of the license is not limited to the agents at any one segment of the population. Top agents many of whom have been in practice for a number of years, have developed some unsavory practices that are difficult to challenge as a new agent.

    Realtors have a responsibility to present the profession in an honourable way... Now as an opportunity to make quick money.

  • | 10 Oct 2014, 03:04 PM Agree 0
    Although I agree that industry needs to be narrowing the sales force your final comment is concerning. Grades are not the only thing indicative of who makes a good agent. People that score well on paper may not have the skills required to learn and be succesful in the field where the real work is done. Some of the schooling offered by OREA is a joke. The passing requirement in some of the upgrade course is 25%. There's no credibility in that score.

    Brokerages should be taking a more hands on approach to their sales force and performance. Further to this more needs to be done to improve the image of the industry by weeding out the snakes.
  • Ron Keillor | 12 Oct 2014, 11:22 PM Agree 0
    I think they need to get rid of the quick license and go back to the one that actually shows these new realtors how to write a contract, I am getting tired of re-writing contracts for the ones that don't know how !
  • Nit picker | 15 Oct 2014, 12:09 PM Agree 0
    If you are going to criticize a blog as being poorly written, you might want to get someone to proofread your criticism prior to posting it. Poor Sacha.
  • | 26 Oct 2014, 06:46 PM Agree 0
    Dear Sasha, before you criticize an article because it is poorly written, you may want to check your spelling.
  • OREA Real Estate Course Provider | 01 May 2015, 06:30 AM Agree 0
    Nice post, Thanks. Course provider is a best site for providing online course to preparing the exam.
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