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It’s Time to Renew your License (May 15-June 30)

This article from the May eBulletin is republished here to remind brokers to renew their license.

Be sure to renew your license between May 15 and June 30, even if you haven’t completed CE. If you do not renew by June 30, your license will expire.

Following are the most frequently-asked questions regarding license renewal.  The answers to all of these questions, as well as step-by-step renewal instructions, are also provided in the Commission’s Renewal Video, which is posted in the Video Library.

When do I renew?

The annual period for renewal of your real estate license began at midnight on May 15 and continues until 11:59 pm on June 30.

How do I renew?

  1. Go the Commission’s homepage, www.ncrec.gov.
  2. Click on Renew My Broker License.
  3. Enter your license number and PIN (password). Your PIN will be the last four digits of your Social Security number unless you have changed it.
  4. Verify your contact information, and update information if needed.
  5. Provide the “Employee Misclassification” disclosure and certification.
  6. If you are a Broker-in-Charge, you will be required to disclose information regarding your trust account(s) and any criminal convictions or disciplinary actions that have occurred within the previous year, if applicable.
  7. Pay the $45 renewal fee by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, or PayPal.

How much is the renewal fee?

The renewal fee is $45.00. You may pay by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, or PayPal.

Will I get a receipt?

Yes. A printable confirmation of renewal will appear on your screen when the process is complete.

Will the Commission mail me a new pocket card?

No. A link to download your new digital pocket card will appear on your screen when the process is complete. You may print a copy of the pocket card if you prefer to have a paper copy.

I haven’t completed CE, yet. Can I still renew?

Yes. Be sure to renew your license by June 30, even if you do not complete your continuing education by June 10. If you don’t renew, your license will expire.

Can I pay my renewal fee by check?

No. Per Commission Rule 58A .0503, you must renew online.

Can I call the Commission office and pay by phone?

No. Per Commission Rule 58A .0503, you must renew online.

Can I go to the Commission office and pay in person?

If you come to the Commission office, you may renew and pay online, using a computer in our lobby. No cash or checks will be accepted, even in person.

What will happen if I don’t renew by June 30?

If you do not renew your license online by 11:59 pm on June 30, your license will expire. To reinstate an expired license, you must pay a $90 fee between July 1 and December 31. Failure to reinstate the former license by December 31 will result in your having to submit a new application, including application fee and criminal background report. You will also be required to take additional education and/or pass the state license examination. https://www.ncrec.gov/Licensing/Reinstatement

NOTE: If you are a BIC or BIC Eligible and your license expires or changes to inactive status on July 1, you will automatically lose BIC Eligible status and, in turn, BIC designation (if applicable). If that happens, and you wish to regain BIC Eligible status, you must (1) return the license to active status; (2) meet the experience requirements for BIC designation; (3) take the 12-hour Broker-in-Charge Course before re-designation; and (4) complete and submit the Request for BIC Eligible Status and/or Designation form (REC 2.25). Do NOT take the 12- hour BIC Course before your license is on active status! Refer to Rule 58A. 0110 for detailed instructions regarding regaining BIC Eligible status and BIC designation.

Questions about the renewal process?

Email us at LS@ncrec.gov or call us at 919.875.3700.

Current Stats: Monthly Licensee Count as of May 1, 2022

The Pitfalls of Using Escalation Clauses

Stephen L. Fussell, Chief CPO

In an effort to gain a competitive advantage, some prospective buyers may ask their agents to include escalation clauses in their offers.  An escalation clause is one in which a prospective buyer expresses their willingness to pay a specific amount more than the highest competing buyer. The escalation clause may or may not indicate a maximum amount that the prospective buyer is willing to pay.

The Commission discourages the use of escalation clauses. Commission Rule A .0115 reads as follows: “A broker shall not disclose the price or other material terms contained in a party’s offer to purchase, sell, lease, rent, or to option real property to a competing party without the express authority of the offering party.” How does this rule impact escalation clauses? Assume, for example, that Buyer #1 offers to pay $1,000 more than any other offeror. In order to establish the price that Buyer #1 will pay, the brokers involved would have to share the terms of the highest offer with Buyer #1. Sharing these terms is prohibited except in the unlikely event that the other buyer consents to it.

Pitfalls of escalation clauses:

A seller’s best response in a multiple offer situation where one or more of the buyers is using an escalation clause will likely be to invite all buyers to make their highest and best offers. That way, each buyer is given an opportunity to buy the property at the price and terms they are willing to pay and the seller will receive the best offer from each buyer rather than an incremental offer from a buyer who wants to offer slightly more than a competing buyer.

Escalation clauses tend to focus on price.  Listing agents should exercise care to advise seller-clients to consider more than the sales price in an offer. An offer from a well-qualified buyer who offers a lesser amount may be a wiser choice than a higher offer from a less-qualified buyer. Similarly, an offer from a buyer who has visited the property may be preferred over one who offers a high price sight unseen.

Brokers who choose to use escalation clauses should proceed with extreme caution. Real estate transactions are complex even without such clauses. Real estate transactions in busy markets with low inventory can be even more frantic. Escalation clauses may introduce confusion, anxiety, frustration and fraud.  For these reasons, the Commission discourages their use.

The July 20 Commission meeting will be in Durham!

Have you ever wanted to attend a Real Estate Commission meeting to see what happens? If so, please join us at the Have you ever wanted to attend a Real Estate Commission meeting to see what happens? If so, please join us at the JB Duke Hotel, 230 Science Drive, Durham, NC, in Meeting Room C at 9 a.m. You are welcome to stay for a portion or for all of the Commission’s meeting. Mark your calendars for July 20!

Disciplinary Actions

CESAR AUGUSTO OSORIO (ARDEN) – The Commission accepted the voluntary surrender of the broker license of Cesar Osorio effective May 18, 2022. The Commission dismissed without prejudice allegations that Mr. Osorio violated provisions of the Real Estate License Law and Commission rules. Mr. Osorio neither admitted nor denied misconduct.

Employment Opportunities Available

Are you interested in joining the staff of the North Carolina Real Estate Commission? From time to time, employment opportunities become available. They are posted on the Commission’s website under the “About Us” tab.

We currently have opportunities available for the following positions:

Director of Education and Licensing

Auditor – Application Deadline June 28, 2022

Consumer Protection Officer – Application Deadline June 27, 2022

Network Administrator – Application deadline July 5, 2022

Click here for more information.

Staff Appearances

Sheryl Graham, Consumer Protection Officer, spoke at the REMAX United office meeting on May 17.

Steve Fussell, Chief Consumer Protection Officer, spoke at the Showcase Realty LLC meeting on May 18.

Shanna Hardy, Consumer Protection Officer, spoke at the REMAX Leading Edge office meeting on May 25.