Rule Change Benefits Brokers-in-Charge

To expand real estate educational opportunities for persons serving as brokers-in-charge of real estate offices and to better assure that a cadre of qualified individuals is available to serve as brokers-in-charge, the Real Estate Commission recently amended its rules to enable brokers to become “broker-in-charge eligible.”

Prior to the January 1 rule change, a broker-in-charge who had any “break in service,” that is, any period when he or she was not actively managing an office, would be required to satisfy the initial experience and education requirements when he or she was redesignated a broker-in-charge.  Under the new rule, however, a broker may become “broker-in-charge eligible” and may retain that status indefinitely, even during periods when he or she is not actively serving as broker-in-charge of a particular real estate office.

To become “broker-in-charge eligible,” a broker must either:

1. be designated on Commission records as a broker-in-charge as of January 1, 2008 and have satisfied all initial requirements to serve as a broker-in-charge; or

2. declare oneself a broker-in-charge on or after January 1, 2008 and satisfy the initial  experience and education requirements (2 years full-time brokerage experience and 12 hour Broker-in-Charge Course).

Once a broker has designated himself or herself as a broker-in-charge and satisfied the initial requirements, that broker may retain his or her broker-in-charge eligibility indefinitely thereafter by continually maintaining his or her broker license on active status and by taking the Broker-in-Charge Annual Review course each year beginning the license year after the license year when the broker was designated a broker-in-charge.  For example, a broker who declares himself or herself as a broker-in-charge in March 2008 will first be required to take the Broker-in-Charge Annual Review course during the July 2008-June 2009 license year and continuing each year thereafter.  A  broker’s “broker-in-charge eligibility” will be terminated if the broker does not complete the Broker-in-Charge Annual Review course (and the mandatory Real Estate Update course) each year or the broker loses his or her license for any reason, e.g., failure to renew, license suspended, etc..

If your broker-in-charge eligibility is terminated, then to be redesignated a broker-in-charge you must:

1. have an active license and demonstrate that you have at least two years full-time (or equivalent part-time) real estate brokerage experience within the past five years;

2. take the 12-hour Broker-in-Charge Course (or, if you have taken the 12-hour Broker-in-Charge Course within the past three years, you may instead take the 4 hour Broker-in-Charge Annual Review Course); and

3. submit a properly completed Broker-in-Charge Declaration form to the Commission.

However, so long as a broker remains “broker-in-charge eligible,” he or she may have periods when he or she is not actively managing an office, but may then be redeclared broker-in-charge of a particular office by simply submitting a properly completed Broker-in-Charge Declaration form to the Commission and will not be required to take the 12-hour Broker-in-Charge Course.

Brokers-in-charge who neither live in North Carolina nor manage an office located within North Carolina are not required to take any of the special broker-in-charge education.  However, if such a broker-in-charge subsequently moves to North Carolina or becomes broker-in-charge of an office in North Carolina, then he or she will be required to take the special broker-in-charge education.

This article came from the January 2008-Vol38-3 edition of the bulletin.