Should i get my real estate license in nyc to be part time? I work full time and go to school

Asked by funnyguy84, New York, NY Thu Feb 9, 2012

I only want to get it because I plan to buy a few homes in this year and when i sell them i rather be more involved than another broker/agent? I know being part time in real estate is diffcult but i only want the license for when i buy and sell my own homes. I also plan to get my mortgage license so I can be more familar with mortgage prodcuts and know how to get loans for homes.
Can anyone please give me advice?
I dont plan to quit my job or stop going to school, but eventually I will go full time in real estate but for now I will just get the licenses fro my own purchases
P.S i will save money on commision when i sell.

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Chris Schill…, Agent, Houston, TX
Thu Feb 9, 2012
Taking classes and getting real estate knowledge is very likely the BEST decision that you may ever your entire life!

Once you have the access to the inner workings of real estate you can command your own destiny. Its more than just’s the entire enchilada. Understanding value and the market that you live in and want to buy properties is priceless.

Don't let others get you sidetracked. When I first started and wanted to learn this business I hired a board certified real estate attorney. I printed out the contract for purchasing different kinds of properties...single family, condos, etc. and read them.....three times...and highlighted the things that didn’t make sense to me. What goes in this blank, how many days should i put here.....and then went to the attorney to have him review my questions and these contracts. BEST $300 hour I have ever spent.

Best of luck to you!

If you liked my answer, please give me the "Thumbs Up" and reward me by designating me as the "Best Answer"!


Chris Schilling, ABR, GRI, CRS, GREEN
Real Estate Broker
Turbo Realty
5 votes
First Last, , 90002
Thu Feb 9, 2012
Your first problem is, you can take the courses and pass the salesperson's tests, but you absolutely cannot be licensed without a sponsoring broker who "holds" your license and supervises your real estate activity.

This means you need to work for a firm on some level, you cannot work independently. Your right to receive commissions from your sponsoring broker--the only legal way you can get paid--does not exist unless you have a sponsoring broker.

Secondly, many brokerages will expect a percentage of any of your own property that you sell. Yes, you read that right. You will have to pay your broker of record a cut if you sell your own property while being an agent of that broker. At some firms the cut is large.

I'm not at all sure you will save money when you sell because you are an agent of some brokerage firm. As an agent I have represented real estate licensees who felt they were better off hiring my firm and me than negotiating for themselves, a task that is really not for everyone.

Many sponsoring brokers will not accept you given what you are planning. In fact, sponsoring brokers expect you to make money for them, and some will pressure you to get listings and show property. There are other brokerage firms where you can pay a monthly fee and they will let you work part-time, but the fees can be high. With your schedule, I seriously doubt you have enough time and schedule flexibility to be productive at all as a real estate agent.

My advice is this: Take the classes in person at the Real Estate Board of New York's offices (east Midtown Manhattan) so you get a great education at a great price; take the classroom test and the $15 licensing test; and then put your records away. Your classroom work is valid for years (check with REBNY to find out how many years), you can always get a sponsoring broker later.

My further advice is, do NOT take on-line coursework for a license! I can't emphasize this enough. Your goal is to learn, not just to get a license, and you will learn much, much more, insider info, and make valuable contacts, if you study in a classroom setting.

Karla Harby
Lic. Real Estate Salesperson
Charles Rutenberg LLC
212-688-1000 x146
4 votes
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Thu Feb 9, 2012
There's clearly more to this story than we know.
Those are great goals but have you actually analyzed what the benefit to you will be?
Have you actually talked with a real estate professional for the purpose of discovering where holding such education credentials will provide you ANY benefit? How about a discussion with a mortgage broker?

For your purpose, selling less the five properties a year, holding an active license will prove to be an encumbrance, not a benefit.

Yes, there is education that will prove beneficial, however, for your investment purposes, that education will not be found in real estate or mortgage broker classes.

Annette Lawrence
ReMax Realtec Group
727. 420. 4041
Web Reference:
3 votes
Jenet Levy, Agent, New York, NY
Thu Feb 9, 2012
Being a real estate agent in NYC is a very full-time job. There a couple of things I'd like to point out about your plans. You say you only want the license so you can buy and sell your own homes yourself. You can do that anyway as a For Sale by Owner. Most For Sale by Owners, however, fail and end up listing with an experienced agent. You, as your own agent only dealing with when you buy or sell, will still be inexperienced Wouldn't you rather have a real pro handle these transactions? For Sale by Owners also fail because of their emotional attachment to their property. You will have this issue too. Furthermore, you will need to be affiliated with a brokerage. You will be expected to have a certain level of production, there are fees you will need to pay to the brokerage, and other fees for the Real Estate Board of NY, etc. As far as saving on commissions of your own sales, a truly qualified F/T skilled, experienced agent of a brokerage with great marketing capabilities will be able to get you more money in the end. As far as also becoming a mortgage broker, that is really spreading yourself too thin. Let's put it this way - I need my teeth examined and cleaned a couple of times a year, but I choose not to go to dental school so I can do it myself.
2 votes
TinyTStrats, Home Buyer, New York, NY
Wed Oct 26, 2016
If you’re part time, consider working somewhere without a traditional, come in the office for facetime culture. A traditional brokerage will have a lot of overhead costs, and they’ll likely pressure you to hit production/sales targets. They may even have quotas you must hit.

This is not something you want if you’re only doing this part time to make some extra cash.

With that said, it’s extremely hard to make it in real estate if you’re not full time. That’s because of the crazy amount of competition in the industry (i.e. 50,000 licensed agents in NYC area). You’ll be up against sharks who ARE full time.

Make sure you find a Sponsoring Broker who will give you leads but won’t pressure you to come into the office and hit production goals. Good luck!
1 vote
Jeanne Feeni…, Agent, Basking Ridge, NJ
Thu Feb 9, 2012
The way to accomplish your goals and not derail your education and current job is to be a referral agent. You will still have to pay a portion of what you earn to your sponsoring broker as pointed out by Karla. You just can't get away from that. A referral agent has an active license "hung" with a broker, but does not need to pay for insurance, board fees, mls fees (which can really add up). You can refer business to active agents and earn a referral fee which is generally around 25% of whatever the agent takes in.

I think this is the best way to dabble in real estate. I can tell you that to earn a living, I am working long and steady hours.

Good luck to you,
Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service, Unsurpassed Results
1 vote
Robert DiAlb…, Agent, Coral Springs, FL
Tue Sep 3, 2013
You got some great comments below. Not sure this is the way to make your decision but at least you have some good advice. Not much I can add. Good luck.
0 votes
Lisa Bolanos…, Agent, Lake Arrowhead, CA
Tue Sep 3, 2013
You can never be too educated. I don't understand the negative comments. I find many agents are very territorial. I am competitive but not territorial. Let the best person win. Do one step at a time. Research your markets. Become familiar with the trends. I am thinking about getting several more Brokers licenses just because I can. It can get a little costly and each state is very different.
0 votes
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Sat Feb 11, 2012
"I only want to get it because I plan to buy a few homes in this year and when i sell them....."
To achieve the greatest benefit from the goal you stated in the first sentence, you certainly don't and in many cases will find it detrimental to hold an active real estate license. One of many reasons is the broker for whom you MUST work can dictate how you structure and manage your business in addition to grabbing a portion of your income. There are a plethora of options that are highly profitable that you should seriously consider. The choice you are about to make will determine whether you are working for profits or tips.
The real estate market in NY certainly will be different than that found in FL. But, year after year, I meet NYers who hit the big time starting at exactly the same point you find yourself now. Repeatedly they repeat, 'Working for profits is a better plan."
There is no secret regarding how real estate changes hands. There are more than 20 ways to sell a home, most real estate professionals are able or allowed to do 3. There are over 15 ways to finance a home, most real estate professional are able or allowed only 2.
Finally, the training new agents receive results in a 95% failure rate within the first two years. Clearly their exists a major problem in the conventional manner in which folks enter the real estate professional. Do you want to spend the next five years realizing most agents spend 85% of their time marketing, while independents, like you may become, spend 85% of their time creating profit. The choice is yours.
Now, their are GREAT reasons to become a real estate professional. One of those is it allows you to represent people other than yourself, such as other buyers and sellers and receive compensation. That, however, was not in your mission statement.
Best of success to you.
Annette Lawrence
ReMax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL
727. 420. 4041
Web Reference:
0 votes
Raoul Sodoga…, Agent, New York, NY
Thu Feb 9, 2012
I have advices for you. Very Simple:

- Get your license at the New York Real Estate Institute (NYREI) in classroom not online. You can even do weekend/night classes and spread it out like you feel to fit your whole school and work schedule. You can even take one course a week.

- Get time during the week or weekend and call me or come to our office in Midtown East. We, at Nest Seekers will love helping you reach your goals. I am an agent at Nest Seekers and i am doing exactly the same thing right now. It is just a matter of agreement with the CEO of the Brokerage Company. We have an agent in our team, he really work part-time, i barely see him. In six months period, i only saw him twice, so no worries.

- Experiences in dealing with buyers or sellers come on the field and in trainings not in school. Flipping properties in good manners comes with experiences, and if you want to do it right, well you need to work with agents and brokerages which have experiences in that specific field, not with agents who just have the option of only getting commission-paid from Real Estate transactions. Call me for more detail.

Warmest Regards,

Raoul Sodogandji
Global Market Specialist
Licensed Salesperson

(o): 212.252.8772 (EXT.782)
(c): 347.993.8333
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0 votes
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