Alabama Regulations for Qualifying Real Estate Brokers

Instructor: Tara Schofield
In Alabama, there are several guidelines for qualifying brokers. Learn about many of the regulations qualifying brokers, temporary qualifying brokers, and associate brokers must follow.

Understanding Broker Regulations

Being a broker has many satisfying elements to the job, such as more freedom, the opportunity to mentor other agents, and the potential for greater income. While these considerations may be enticing to a salesperson considering getting a broker's license, there are rules that regulate how brokers operate. Let's review some of these regulations.

Broker for Multiple Companies

You may think that as a broker you can only work for one company. However, in Alabama, brokers may work for or represent two or more companies. In order for this to be approved, three qualifications must be met:

  • The companies you represent or plan to work for agree in writing
  • You file the written consent with the Alabama Real Estate Commission
  • You plan to work from the same location

Once you have met these requirements, you can submit your application to the Alabama Real Estate Commission for approval.

Temporary Qualifying Broker

Let's say you work for Jerry, an older, successful broker in town. After working at the brokerage for two years, Jerry unexpectedly dies. For various reasons, the more senior agents are not willing or able to become a temporary qualifying broker, the person who steps in to run the agency after the qualifying broker dies or becomes disabled. Within a 30 day timeline you are designated as the temporary qualifying broker.

You have been a salesperson for over a year, the minimum time required. Your application is approved by the commission and you now have the right to operate the agency for up to six months from the anniversary of Jerry's death. During that time you can either get your broker's license, another broker can be hired, or the company license will become inactive by the real estate commission.

Associate Brokers

You worked at an agency prior to working at Jerry's brokerage. That agency had four associate brokers, people who had broker's licenses but were not acting as the qualifying broker. There can only be one qualifying broker; therefore, when there are other licensed brokers within the same agency, they must take the roll of associate brokers who operate more as salespeople than brokers.

Operating Location

You work as a temporary qualifying broker for Jerry's company for four months when you decide it's time to go out on your own and get your broker's license. You complete the requirements and are ready to start your own company. One of the key questions you have is where to set up your business location.

There is one basic consideration you must decide. Whether you want to work from your home in a rural area or drive to the next town and set up your office there. Regardless of which location you select, you must have room to maintain all business records and files. Several factors will affect your decision.

If you choose to work from your home, you must have a separate office that is only used for real estate. It must have a business phone, private entrance, and be labeled as a real estate office. Additionally, you cannot hire other agents to work out of your home office, even if it is a rural area. You will be a one-person show.

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