There appears to be reform afoot throughout the real estate and management rights sectors, with more calls being made for greater governance, a review into accreditation and licensing requirements and even the introduction of compulsory CPD or CTD to ensure that all aspects of the industry are adequately covered and stakeholders protected. With all of this on the horizon, I thought it prudent to sit down with Dennis Mackenzie, CEO of Property Training Australia (PTA) to gain a better perspective on what’s available and how best to move forward. Here are some of the common questions that are asked for licensing.
Q: Are you aware of new training being introduced in the near future?
A: Yes, we have been working very closely with the governing bodies, including QLD Office of Fair Trading, ARAMA and the national training regulator ARTIBUS that are all involved in industry accreditation. This is to ensure that our training remains at the highest level. We anticipate that there will be a number of new training units introduced across all licenses in coming years and we are prepared for this. We are trying to make the transition as effortless as possible for past and present students.
Q: What are the timelines expected regarding these changes?
A: Subject to the Queensland Office of Fair Trading approving the units of competency for licensing, it has been suggested that these changes will be introduced as early as mid-2021. Students enrolling in courses in 2021 will be advised of the changes to legislation and training units.
Q: What is PTA doing in regards to proposed legislation changes regarding CTD (Continual Training Development)?
A: PTA strongly support the proposed changes to CTD. For years we have been holding ‘Professional Development’ sessions to ensure that the industry keeps up to date with all changes within the industry. We have urged students to come back annually and hope that the proposed legislation changes will make it mandatory for all licensed agents to complete some form of CTD. This will ensure the whole industry upskills professionally, and that the industry as a whole can benefit from monitored standards and a higher code of conduct.
Q: How do I get my full real estate license?
A: Once you have completed the 19 units of competency that is required to hold a full license in Queensland, you will need to lodge your Statement of Attainment with the Office of Fair Trading. (Note that no professional training organisation will ever issue a license, they can only issue a statement of qualifications).
The Office of Fair Trading will process the application, which can take anywhere between four and six weeks, and will then issue a physical copy of your license. Should an employer need proof of certification, you can show them your qualification and proof that it has been lodged with the Government (OFT) to demonstrate that you are simply waiting on a copy of your license.
Fees are dependent on the duration you wish your license to be valid – please check the oft website.
Q: How long is the full licensing course take?
A: The full real estate licensing course can be completed online, in class or through private tuition, all of which will require you to physically attend an auction for one assessment.
If you decide to do the course online and you have 24-hour access to your course and can work from home at your own pace, PTA suggests that a minimum of 90 hours will be required to complete all 19 units of competency.
If you decide to do the course in class, you can complete the majority of the course in 10 days, keeping in mind that you will need to attend an auction to complete the course.
Private Tuition is the quickest option as it is personal one-on-one training and enables the trainee to complete all 19 units in under a week; this option is very intensive and largely dependent on how quickly you work and more importantly, your understanding of the content.
Q: I have not renewed my license – what do I do now?
A: A professional training organisation can review the situation and advise if credit transfers apply or if a new course will need to be completed. If the modules studied previously Contact a suitable training company for an assessment and recommendation.
Q: I have worked in real estate for many years and need to do a refresher course.
A: There are several training companies that offer refresher courses in the main centres throughout Queensland. With licensing reform a very current topic now, PTA recommend that all licensed agents undertake a refresher course once a year. This training will also contribute to your professional development.
Q: If I complete a sales/property manager course, can I work in a real estate office?
A: Yes, this license is an entry level license that is ideal for someone new to the industry. It qualifies you to work in a real estate office under the supervision of an agent with a full license. You will not however, be able to operate your own agency with this license.
Q: What course do I need to complete to work in property management?
A: This depends on what form of property management you wish to pursue. If you are looking at doing onsite property management and working in management rights then you will be required, at a minimum, to complete the Resident Letting Agents (RLA) course. You can then choose to upgrade your skills later to further your career/business opportunities.
If you are wishing to work in property management from a real estate office, the best course would be the combined ‘Salesperson and Property Management Registration’ course – this training covers the first seven units of the real estate licensing course and allows you to work in an office, under a principal agent.
Q: What license do I need to own a real estate agency?
A: To own and operate your own agency or management rights business you will be required to complete a full real estate license, consisting of 19 units.
Q: Some companies offer a full license in a couple days, is this viable?
A: As with almost everything in life, if it seems too good to be true it probably is! Compressed courses offer limited class time and the large majority of the work to be completed at home. Having been involved with training since 2003 we have ascertained that to complete 19 units of competency – and to actually be competent, it generally requires more than two or three days.
Read the fine print and understand what the work load is to be done outside of class. It is impossible to complete the course to the required level in a few days and you are likely to have to spend weeks if not months at home completing the course.