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State broker education requirements to change.

Prompted by complaints about the confusing continuing education requirements for real estate brokers and salespersons, the Department of State is currently drafting new, user-friendly rules.

Currently, all licensees are on the same four-year schedule and must complete 45-hours of courses prior to Oct. 31, 1995 in order to renew their licenses. These courses are given by schools and colleges, as well as entities such as the Real Estate Board of New York. But the courses must be given in modules of 15, 30 or 45-hours and are difficult to fit into a busy executive's schedule.

Additionally, because everyone had the same deadline, courses would be oversubscribed at the end of the four-year period and brokerages would be without much of their staff.

Under the new program that becomes effective November 1, 1995, brokers and salespersons must complete 22.5 hours of classes every two years prior to the staggered renewal date on their license.

According to Kathleen McCoy, administrator for the exam and education unit for the Dept. of State, who is drafting new regulations, some of the courses are expected to be given in two- and three--hour increments, so that these individuals can take several courses spaced throughout the two-year period.

"The reason that the Department went for legislation to change the continuing ed rule," explained McCoy, "was that people were getting confused about when their education was due. People were calling constantly. It was an arbitary date. This way it makes it much easier for them to keep records."

McCoy said they are sensitive to those whose license renewal date would require them to complete the 22.5 hours of training right after the end of the current four-year period. "There will be different parameters for people who are due right after the renewal," she noted.

Barbara Corcoran, president of the Corcoran Group, a residential brokerage, and a teacher of some of the courses, said the changes are wonderful. "In the sales business time is money," she said. "By nature, good brokers are procrastinators. They take care of the customers first so it's hard to spend all their time at the end [of the time period] on the education requirements."

Corcoran recalled that managers of brokerages feel like "parents," trying to remind their staff the courses were due and counting down the weeks.

Said McCoy, "We did get a lot of complaints about the 15, 30, and 45-hour modules. It was becoming an administrative nightmare because everyone's was due on the same date."

The legislation was passed a year ago and signed by the governor. McCoy expects the proposed rules to be drafted by the end of the year, at which time they will be circulated to schools, instructors and real estate advisory boards, prior to a redrafting and public comment period.
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Title Annotation:New York State real estate broker requirements
Author:Weiss, Lois
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Oct 12, 1994
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