A buyer’s agent is an essential part of the process for many people looking to buy or sell their home in Australia.
They not only help you with the legal and financial aspects of things, but can also be an essential source of information when it comes to how to prep your house, the best time to go in the market, and other things only a professional would know.
However, just like working with a plumber, electrician, or doctor, you don’t want to take advice from someone without the proper credentials.
So, with this in mind, let’s take a look at some of the key questions regarding a commercial real estate agent license in Australia.
Is it possible to act as both a buyer and seller agent in Australia?
The main distinction between a buyer’s and seller’s agent is who they represent. A buyer’s agent is dedicated to working solely for the buyer to facilitate a stress-free property purchase, while a selling agent works for the vendor to secure the best possible price for their property.
Despite both agents working towards the same end goal, which is to complete the deal, their objectives are entirely different.
It’s worth noting that in Australia, an agent is legally prohibited from representing and earning a commission from both parties involved in a transaction. They can only represent either the buyer or the seller to prevent any conflict of interest.
Does a buyer agent need to be licensed?
By law in Australia, all practicing buyer’s agents need to have their formal license, with no exceptions.
Note that the exact nature of the license can vary from state to state.
For example, in New South Wales, you require a full license, while in Tasmania, you need a specific registration for the state.
To make it easier for agents to do business, the majority of states have a program of mutual recognition for those that have a licence or registration in other Australian states/territories.
However, they need to first submit an application and get a temporary license to do so.
Can you work as a real estate agent without a license?
You need a license for just about all activities that could fall under an agent’s jurisdiction, including:
- Owning an agency
- Buying, selling or renting properties/land
- Negotiating on behalf of a client
- Showing property to buyers
- Advertising a property
- Opening a property for inspection
- Managing an apartment complex/selling units
As a result, you don’t want to let your license lapse or lose it for any given reason, as you would have to suspend all operations until you get it renewed. Maintaining a license is paramount for any agency or individual agent.
What are the requirements for licensing as a buyer’s agent?
The two major requirements are being 18 years or older and completing the necessary training courses. Other requirements may vary by state. Note that factors like prior criminal history or rejection for previously getting a license may be considered.
How much does a license cost?
The main fees you will need to cover are a license fee for either 1 or 3 years, as well as a small criminal check fee. Expect to pay between $2,500-$3,000 AUD in total costs initially.
What is the income range for buyer’s agents in Australia?
Buyers’ agents in Sydney can earn an average annual salary ranging from $70,000 to $110,000 for their jobs. But the national average salary for buyers’ agents is $51,500.
How do I check if my agent is licensed?
The easiest way for people to check the licence status of their agents is to look at the state registrar. This can easily be done online at the state website of choice.
How can I find an agent by license number?
There are features on most of the state websites to search by license number as well as name or business that they work under.
When training to become a real estate agent, it’s essential to exercise caution.
Some online courses that aren’t accredited fail to teach the necessary skills required for the job, even though they charge substantial enrollment fees. These courses can also create false expectations regarding salary prospects. If you suspect that your training provider is promising more than they can deliver, please contact the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
Here are some warning signs to look out for:
- The training course lacks accreditation from a professional training organization.
- The training provider offers a short-term course that results in a license in another state through Mutual Recognition.
- The training course makes unrealistic promises about income expectations.
- The training course focuses too heavily on lead generation and provides little insight into the role of a buyer’s agent.
- The training course relies on online portals to help you select property for your clients and fails to provide foundational training on how to search effectively.
- The training course suggests that you can train part-time.
- The training course suggests that a laptop is all you need to get started.
- The training course neglects to highlight the legal risks, obligations, and requirements specific to the state in which you intend to operate.
- The promotional material is heavy on glossy brochures but light on detailed information.
There are a variety of different resources out there to help would-be homeowners or home buyers when it comes to looking for professional support or trying to learn more about their agents. Along with this, there are a variety of tools for the other side of the equation, helping these qualified agents connect to potential leads and support their own careers. One such example is homeowners’ databases. Licensed agents can do quite a lot in terms of marketing through cold calls, and these databases help quite a bit in terms of finding prospects.