The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) carefully regulates real estate professionals to protect buyers and sellers from being harmed by the advice of uneducated agents. Completing the Florida real estate course, passing the state exam, and earning your Florida real estate license is the only way the DBPR can confirm you are fit to represent buyers and sellers.
So what is an unlicensed Florida real estate agent?
An unlicensed Florida real estate agent is more like a real estate assistant. You can provide some limited assistance to a licensed agent, but most tasks we associate with agents would be strictly off-limits.
Let’s take a look at what unlicensed real estate agents in Florida can (and can’t) do. Then we’ll discuss if remaining unlicensed is a good fit for you or if you’d be better off getting your Florida real estate license.
What Unlicensed Florida Real Estate Agents Can Do
As an unlicensed agent, your role would be strictly behind-the-scenes. Since you aren’t authorized by the DBPR to represent buyers or sellers, you must be extremely careful with every client interaction. So, in most cases, the licensed agent or broker you work for would simply minimize your contact with clients to avoid any potential issues.
This means you’ll be handling administrative tasks that don’t generally require much client interaction. Tasks like:
Property research. Your agent might need you to pull county tax records or sales history for different properties.
Paperwork management. You can gather docs for signatures or type contracts for the agent’s approval.
Data entry. You can enter the agent’s property notes into your MLS database and upload the agent’s property data to various websites.
Sign management. You can put up the for sale signs, riders, and open house signs and take them down as needed.
Open house set up. You can arrive at the open house early to make sure the lights are on, blinds are open, and marketing materials are properly arranged.
Reception duties. You can answer and transfer incoming calls.
Marketing material prep. You can prepare marketing materials for the agent’s approval.
Marketing material distribution. You can place agent-approved ads online or distribute approved fliers.
Courier documents. You can pick up and drop off documents as needed by the agent.
Place work orders. You can arrange for vendors to complete work at listings as ordered by the agent.
What Unlicensed Florida Real Estate Agents Can’t Do
According to the Florida Real Estate Commission, unlicensed Florida real estate agents can’t:
Auction or attempt to auction real property of another for compensation.
Advertise or attempt to advertise real property of another for compensation.
Undertake to list or sell one or more timeshare periods per year on behalf of another individual or entity for compensation.
Negotiate or agree to any commission split or referral fee on behalf of a licensee.
This looks like a list of only four items, but think of all the things that go into these four items. If you’re unlicensed, you can’t:
Show homes to buyers.
List a home for sale.
Collect a commission on a home sale.
Host an open house.
Present comparables to help sellers arrive at a listing price.
Advise buyers on making an offer.
Advise sellers on accepting an offer.
Put your name on any marketing materials.
Help clients navigate the buying or selling process.
Essentially, without a Florida real estate license, you don’t get to do any of the fun things that make being an agent so rewarding!
Should I Get a Florida Real Estate License?
If you’re happy handling administrative tasks for another agent without much client interaction, remaining unlicensed might be perfectly fine for you. But if you want the benefits of being a real estate agent — the flexible schedule, control over your own business, and unlimited income potential — then it makes more sense to get licensed.
And getting licensed is easier and faster than you might think! With Aceable Real Estate School, you can complete your affordable online real estate coursework in just a few weeks and be licensed just a couple of months from now. Don’t wait to start your new career.