Can you transfer an out-of-state license in Texas? Find out how reciprocity and portability helps out-of-state agents get Texas deals done.
Lots of people are moving to Texas, including real estate agents. But that doesn’t mean you have to start all over again from scratch to get an active license in Texas.
Reciprocity laws allow you to get a real estate license without having to go through all of the steps a new agent has to take. There’s also something called real estate license portability that applies to out-of-state agents.
So what are the reciprocity laws and portability guidelines in Texas? Let’s find out!
Reciprocity real estate laws mean that a state has agreed to let agents and brokers from other areas get a license without taking the required real estate pre-licensing courses. However, you would still have to apply for a license in the new state before working as an agent.
Does Texas have real estate license reciprocity? Unfortunately, Texas doesn’t have reciprocity with any other states. Because there is no Texas real estate reciprocity, if you want to get your license in Texas, you must satisfy all Texas licensing requirements. This means you'll still need to take your Texas pre-licensing course to transfer your license.
But wait. While this might make it difficult to transfer a real estate license to Texas, it doesn’t mean you have to begin at step one all over again.
For example, you wouldn’t have to take and pass the national portion of the licensing exam. An agent can also count their time working out-of-state to meet the four-year experience requirement for a Texas broker license.
For more information check out TRELA §1101.651(a), §1101.362, Rule 535.62(b) and 1101.357.
Portability laws outline circumstances in which an agent or broker can be a part of transactions and represent clients in another state outside of where they’re licensed. Texas follows the physical location portability model.
With physical location portability, an out-of-state agent can be a part of the transaction as long as they don’t conduct any of their business in Texas. All of their work must be conducted remotely in the state where they’re licensed.
For instance, an agent from California can find available homes, arrange showings for clients when they travel to Texas and submit an offer as long as they do it all in California. The Texas Real Estate License Act states, "a licensed broker may pay a commission to a licensed broker of another state if the foreign broker does not conduct in this state any of the negotiations for which the fee, compensation, or commission is paid."
There you have it. There’s no way to actually transfer a real estate license from another state to Texas, but there are ways to fast-track getting a Texas real estate license if you’re moving. And if you’re a licensed agent or broker with a client that wants to buy in Texas you can still earn a commission through portability.
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