Starting July 1st, the Evergreen State is about to join our neighbors to the South in Oregon and become a Broker only State. With that comes a few changes that should (hopefully) mean a higher level of Real Estate Service for our Clients and Customers here in the Pacific Northwest. Licensing Law in the Washington has always been very firm up here but in less than 6 weeks, there may be a run on those agents and existing Brokers who’ve otherwise not been exactly above board!
What are some of the New Changes?
In a sort of Round Robin fashion, every licensee will be fingerprinted and have a background check done once every 6 years. This will certainly set a better standard for individuals who elect to enter the profession as well as those who currently hold a real estate license.
Also, since every licensee will become a Broker, classifications will change to reflect varying levels. Existing licensees will become Associate Brokers. Existing Associate Brokers will become Managing Brokers and Existing Managing Brokers and Designated Brokers will remain the same but with heightened levels of responsibilities. So far, so good!?
Now, for some of the fun stuff!
In an attempted to increase public clarity, Real Estate Teams will have to register their team name with the Department of Licensing and have a Managing Broker head up the team. Essentially, each team will need to have their own Broker…and that Broker then reports to the Designated Broker. Clearly, Brokerages that support the Team Building Concept will want to be extra mindful to stay in compliance on this.
Another change that particularly affects the Big Teams is the Brokerages Name must be “Clear and Conspicuous” in any advertising statement. Simply put, the public must be able to see who you work for!
Lastly and perhaps the most fun (tongue in cheek) change coming down from the DOL is their desire to have ALL PAPERWORK “Expeditiously” handed to the Broker. This is vague and ambiguous at best but what the DOL is saying is they want to see all paperwork…whether you have mutual acceptance or not…given to your Broker within 2 business days or shorter if the terms of the client/customer contract necessitates! For your Short Sale Agents…that one should be fun.
All in all…this is Good!
Raising the bar, if you will, has always been my desire as a Broker and Real Estate Instructor. I’m all for the changes and the heightened degree of supervision now being placed on our industry. I hope your State or Association has the same level of scrutiny for their licensees…Accountability ultimately makes us all better!