Running a Brokerage
In running a brokerage firm, there are numerous regulations and requirements by the State that must be met. The first concept we are going to delve into are the requirements of the State regarding the services that your office staff can provide the general public. This sounds rather innocuous, but there have been a number of situations involving a firm and the actions of their UNLICENSED staff that were not in compliance with State regulations. So, we will begin with the definitions of personnel/staff and their function.
Office Personnel/Staff - The UNLICENSED staff that you hire to do the general office work for your firm has to be well trained regarding their responsibilities and the requirements of the State of Washington. The main requirement of staff is that they do not practice any form of brokerage services. Only brokers registered with the State are allowed to perform brokerage services.
Staff cannot work with the public such as giving the public information over the phone and one the firm's listings. For this reason some firms require their staff to obtain a real estate license if they deal with the public.
License Required for Brokerage Services - To clarify regarding brokerage services let's look at the State RCWs regarding what is considered brokerage services. As we go over these definitions, please remember that staff and personnel cannot perform ANY of these services unless there are properly licensed. The following text materials are the actual State Statutes regarding what ARE brokerage services.
"Real estate brokerage services" means any of the following services offered or rendered directly or indirectly to another, or on behalf of another for compensation or the promise or expectation of compensation, or on the broker's behalf.
The following activities are considered to be real estate brokerage services and requires the individuals and firm to be licensed properly with the Department of Licensing (DOL) - Business Division - Real Estate Division:
Further Brokerage Services Requiring a License - Negotiating or offering to negotiate, either directly or indirectly, the purchase, sale, exchange, lease, or rental of real estate, or any real property interest therein; or any interest in a cooperative.
Any form of negotiations involving real property or a cooperative requires a license.
Listing, selling, purchasing, exchanging, optioning, leasing, renting, or negotiating the purchase, sale, lease, or exchange of a manufactured or mobile home in conjunction with the purchase, sale, lease, exchange, or rental of the land upon which the manufactured or mobile home is or will be located;
Mobile home sales do not require a real estate license UNLESS land is part of the sale.
However, the Department of Licensing will require a mobile home dealer's license if mobile homes are being sold without the land.
Real Estate Brokerage Advertising
Further Actions Requiring a License - Advertising or holding oneself out to the public by any solicitation or representation that one is engaged in real estate brokerage services;
Responsibilities of Designated Brokers
Firm Designates a Designated Broker - Each firm must have a natural individual that is designated by the firm to be its designated broker. This person must be licensed as a managing broker with the Department. The appropiate forms must be utilized by the firm in appointing the designated broker. The license for this person will be acknowledged by the Department as the designated broker for the firm.
Requirements of the Designated Broker - When a person that holds a managing broker's license becomes the designated broker of a firm, large amount of responsibilities exist. The next couple of pages will highlight these reponsibilities. These include:
With a real estate transaction the licensed firm and designated broker are agents of:
A) the principal
B) the prospect
C) the State
D) all of these
Who pays the commission to the broker?
A) the principal
B) the State
C) the real estate firm
D) the seller
Which property management activity would require a real estate license?
C) taking rental money
D) all do
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The study of system of rules which a particular country or community recognizes as regulating the actions of its members and which it may enforce by the imposition of penalties.