Real estate program Q&A

Feb 9, 2021Andrea Vasquez

According to the Houston Association of Realtors, 29,470 single-family homes sold from June-August 2020. With summer being the best time for sellers and the time of year that home buyers get serious about their house hunts, what better way to transition into a career in real estate than through San Jacinto College's real estate program? Program director David Turnquist answers some of the most common questions about the program.

Q: What kinds of careers are available in real estate?

A: There are many to choose from, including real estate agent, broker, appraiser, inspector, leasing agent, property manager, loan officer, and commercial property specialist, just to name a few.

Q: How much money do real estate agents make?

A: Real estate agents are independent contractors and work under the supervision of a licensed broker. Agents earn money by commissions on the sales they make. If you don't sell anything, then you don't make any money. If you sell a lot of homes, then you'll make a lot of money.

The amount of money you make is really up to you and how hard you want to work. The average first-year real estate agent earns less than $20,000. However, the average experienced agent with at least five years of experience can earn more than $60,000 a year, with many agents earning more than $100,000 a year. The potential is there if you have a business plan and work hard at marketing yourself.

Q: How long does it take to complete the program and get a license?

A: The sales agent license requires six courses that are required by the Texas Real Estate Commission, which can be completed in one semester (16 weeks) if a student is attending full time. After completion of those six courses, students are eligible to take the Texas Real Estate Commission licensing exam. A broker license requires 900 clock hours (60 semester hours), which the Associate of Applied Science in real estate meets. Students can complete the Associate of Applied Science in real estate in two years if they attend full time.

Q: Are there any fees to obtain a state license?

A: Yes, there is a $205 application fee to Texas Real Estate Commission, and the state licensing exam costs $54. Once you have your license, you can expect another $500-$1,000 in membership fees to Texas Real Estate Commission and Houston Association of Realtors. There will also be additional costs, such as purchasing lockboxes, signs, flyer boxes, and other necessary items to operate your real estate business.

Q: Which campuses offer the real estate courses?

A: We offer real estate courses at the Central, North, and South Campuses each semester, including the summer. The six state-required courses are offered in the morning, evening, and online. [Note: The program is now available through San Jac Online.]

Learn more about San Jacinto College's real estate program degree and certificate options.


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