Spring – When an Agent’s Thoughts Turn to Licensing Renewal

Mike Brennan

By Mike Brennan

As the license year comes to its end, thoughts run rampant about all things renewal. Minnesota law explains a licensees’ requirement to maintain and renew a license in Minn §82.61 Licensing: Continue Education and Instruction:

All real estate salespersons and all real estate brokers shall be required to successfully complete 30 hours of real estate continuing education, either as a student or a lecturer, in courses of study approved by the commissioner, during the initial license period and during each succeeding 24-month license period. At least 15 of the 30 credit hours must be completed during the first 12 months of the 24-month licensing period. Licensees may not claim credit for continuing education not actually completed.

As licensees begin their quest to renew or maintain their licenses, eyes turn toward the Pulse Portal website to investigate if their hours of education are up to par. Often, a licensee may not consider this during the off year where a fee is not due. However, there are important considerations we must understand to avoid a license suspension. There are tools and resources available for licensees to utilize to ensure compliance.

Let’s examine the requirements in simple language: To determine if a course qualifies for credits, the education provider must identify the approval of credited hours in all advertising, emails, brochures, materials and/or at the beginning of class. So, when registering for a class, a licensee should see the amount of credits they will earn by completing the course.

We receive many inquiries surrounding the question, “What do I need?” Licenses are valid for a two-year period. To renew a license, a licensee needs to pay a fee (approximately $100) and make sure their continuing education hours are up to speed.

Continuing education must total 30 hours in a two-year period. Frequently, classes are offered in increments of one hour plus courses. Some may be 3.75 hours and others 2.5 hours. The year runs differently than the calendar year (January to December). The real estate license year start in July and ends in June. In the first year of the two-year license period, a minimum of 15 hours of credits must be completed. The easiest way to remember this, is to take a minimum of 15 hours of credits each year. Also note, there are mandatory courses which must be taken each year. The Department of Commerce publishes the core required module(s) in May of each year for the succeeding year (remember that May is toward the end of the license year), outlining the classes which must be taken.

Another mandatory requirement, is one hour of agency and an hour of fair housing. Both must be completed within the two-year timeframe. These courses are not in addition to the 15 hours each year, but are a part of the 15 hours.

Licensees are responsible for monitoring their course credits and the resource that is available is the Pulse Portal website. To view credits on your transcript, login to the site (you will need your social security number and license number) and click on the link “Review your CE Transcript.” Please make sure that your internet browser settings allow for pop-ups. Pop-ups may be disabled to stop advertisers from displaying their material, so you would need to “Disable Pop-Up Blockers” on your browser.

When viewing the transcript, you may be looking at a multipage document that has a navigation tool at the top of the popup (typically in the blue line at the top of the page) that allows you to view credited courses.

All education providers are mandated to provide the credits to each of the licensee’s individual accounts within 10 calendar days of completion of the course. The Pulse Portal site is your singular location for all your real estate licensing information. As of this writing, I received an email from a licensee who is missing a credit on his transcript. Our records confirm it was credited, but it is not showing on his records. Sometimes, cyberspace eats information! By contacting us in April, the licensee has time to contact the website system to find out where their credits are and get them applied to their account.

Please don’t wait until June 30 at 4:25 to make sure the credits have been applied.

Mike Brennan, DREI candidate (Distinguished Real Estate Instructor) has been teaching license and continuing education courses for over 12 years. Mike teaches at the MN Realty School and has been in the real estate business for over 20 years, first as a sales agent, then broker and now instructor. Author of many courses, Mike was a nominee for Inman News’ Most Influential in the United States in the real estate business. Mike teaches license courses and is actively involved in the development of CE classes, required modules and the real estate industry. For more information, visit www.mnrealtyschool.com or call (651) 644-5856.