Getting Your Real Estate License in Louisiana: New Agent Hacks
So you’ve decided to get your Louisiana real estate license. Maybe you’re embarking on a new career. Maybe you’re employed full time and want to get started investing in real estate and handling your own deals. Maybe you’re a stay-at-home parent and want the flexibility to make your own hours and go at your own pace. Whatever is driving your decision, this article will walk you through the process of getting your real estate license in Louisiana so you can hit the ground running.
Who’s in charge?
Most Louisiana agents have three “big brothers” always looking over their shoulders:
The LREC. The governing authority for real estate agents in Louisiana is called the Louisiana Real Estate Commission (the “LREC”). The LREC handles applications for new real estate agents, monitors compliance with continuing education requirements, and penalizes and disciplines agents for violations of real estate laws and rules in Louisiana. Fear the LREC. Seriously.
Brokers. There are two types of real estate agents in Louisiana: salespersons and brokers. Everyone starts out as a salesperson, and every salesperson has to be affiliated with a broker. Think of it like an apprenticeship: new agents in Louisiana “attach” to a broker, who is supposed to guide them through the regulatory, operational, and marketing steps involved in being an agent. After four years as a salesperson—and a bunch of extra courses—a salesperson can apply to become a broker.
Realtor associations. The general public thinks of “agents” and “realtors” as the same thing. Technically, though, an agent can call herself a “realtor” only if she is a member of the National Realtor Association (through one or more of its local chapters). And one of the great prizes of being an agent—access to the multiple listing service—requires that you belong to a realtor association. So, though it’s technically not mandatory, almost all Louisiana agents are members of a realtor association, and most Louisiana brokers require it.
The local realtor association for the Greater New Orleans area is called the New Orleans Metropolitan Association of Realtors (“NOMAR”). It costs good money to belong to NOMAR, the MLS, and the “lockbox” services that NOMAR offers. You can learn more about the process for becoming a realtor with NOMAR by clicking here.