Unlicensed but working in Real Estate?


Real Estate Inside Sales friends, do you know you must have your real estate license in order to contact people about buying, selling, or leasing real estate?

According to the most recent TREC Legal Update:

May an unlicensed person, identified as such, make calls to determine whether persons are interested in buying or selling property, or have property they wish to sell, and if so, make an appointment for a licensed agent to talk to them? No. Often referred to as “telemarketing,” any such activities conducted in Texas must be conducted by a license holder. In Tex. Atty. Gen. Op. H-1271 (1978), the attorney general concluded that a license was required. Also, TREC Rule 535.4(e) makes it clear that all solicitation work must be conducted by a license holder.

May an unlicensed person open doors for prospective buyers or tenants? No. Rule 535.4(c) states that a person must be licensed as a broker or sales agent to show a broker’s listings. An unlicensed assistant cannot perform any activities for a license holder that requires a license, and therefore, cannot “show” a property. This rule was amended last year to clarify that to “show” includes opening doors, allowing access to a property, or hosting an open house. Bottom line, an unlicensed assistant cannot show property for a license holder; this includes providing access to homes for sale and for lease.

May an unlicensed assistant set an appointment to show a listing? Yes. Under the general rules stated above, it is permissible for an assistant to call a homeowner and schedule an appointment for the broker to bring a potential buyer to see the home.

May the unlicensed assistant host an open house? No, effective December 20, 2016, TREC changed the rules so that an unlicensed assistant can no longer host an open house.

See Section 535.4 and 535.5 at TREC Rules and Laws

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