Real Estate Schools
Attending real estate school is the first step to a fun and exciting new career. If you enjoy working with people and making them happy; if you like to seek out the perfect solution to every problem; if you've ever dreamed of having a rewarding job with flexible hours and if you're at least 18 years old and have a high school diploma or the equivalent, you can get started today.Finding a Real Estate School
While a quick online search will bring up dozens of real estate schools in your area, it's important to know that not all schools are equal. The first thing you'll want to do is investigate your state's education and licensing requirements. Make sure your school is accredited or approved by the state. Since cost is sometimes a factor, you may want to explore real estate schools that offer financial assistance - and find out what your obligations are if you accept it. Many schools offer flexible classes on weekends or in the evenings so you can continue at your current job while studying for your new career. You may even be able to take classes at a local community college or online in the privacy of your own home.Education and Training
While the classroom education hours required for licensing vary by state, once enrolled in real estate school you can expect to study real estate practice, real estate principles and ethics, and finance - including contracts, titles, escrow and agency. Since most state real estate boards exist primarily to protect the consumer, a majority of your classroom time will be spent learning the laws of your state that pertain to the transfer of real property. This ensures that you will go on to conduct your business in an ethical and legal manner. Some real estate schools offer additional training in skills that will help you jumpstart your business, including finding contacts, lead generation, effective time management, self-promotion, advertising and marketing.Examination and Licensing
Once you've completed your coursework satisfactorily, you will have to take your state's real estate license examination in order to obtain your license to practice. The examination fee varies by state, and when researching real estate schools it is often worthwhile to find one that offers examination preparation and study guides. Some schools even offer "guaranteed pass" options -- meaning that if you don't pass, you don't pay for your classes or can repeat them. After passing the exam there is an additional fee for licensing. Some states require that real estate agents pursue additional post-licensing education or a period of on-the-job training.Life as a Real Estate Agent
Selling real estate can be a fun, rewarding and lucrative career. Although it is possible to strike out on your own, most fledging agents begin their new occupation as an independent contractor at an established brokerage house. Compensation packages vary, but generally you will split the commission from your sales with the firm. These splits support the administrative running of the office and often include advertising and other promotions. Sometimes commission splits are capped, so once you reach a certain level of earnings the commissions go entirely to you. While the commissions on properties can be quite large, market conditions and fluctuations can have an effect on your earnings. It is recommended that you make sure you have sufficient capital to support yourself until your new business gets up to speed.
Whether you are just starting out or looking to switch to a flexible new career, attending real estate school is the first step on the path to a bright and exciting future.