A member recently asked us to research how many states offer exemptions from continuing education requirements for license renewal based on age or number of years in the business. A great resource for this research is our excellent State Issues Tracker. If you’re not familiar with it, the State Issues Tracker follows 22 core real estate-related issues on an annual basis that are before state legislatures and regulators. Issues include state RESPA laws, legislation related to home inspectors, agency, and water rights. A couple of hot-button issues are updated more frequently, including appraisal management companies and private transfer fees. The Tracker gives a nice executive summary of the issue, recent changes, and then a state by state breakdown of key information and subtopics. Be aware that although we believe this information to be accurate, as issues are generally updated annually, laws can change and regulations can be modified. View this resource as a good starting point for more in-depth research.
One of the issues tracked is licensing requirements and maintenance. We found that 12 jurisdictions have some form of exemption for continuing education. Only Missouri employs an age-only requirement: if you are at least 80 years old, you are exempt from CE in the Show-Me State.
Other states use an ‘age + experience’ model: California says you have to be licensed in good standing for 30 continuous years and be 70 years of age or older, Mississippi says 25 years and 70 years of age, New Mexico 20 years experience and 65 years old, and South Carolina needs 25 years of licensure and age 65 or older.
Some other states have more convoluted formulas: Alabama says “a licensee who was 65 or older on or before Sept. 30, 2000, and who has been licensed 10 years before that date” is exempt. Kentucky says CE doesn’t apply to brokers who were licensed before June 19. 1976. New York exempts ‘full-time’ brokers who were licensed before July 1, 2008 and have been at it for 15 consecutive years. North Dakota requires exempts to be licensed for 15 continuous years on Jan. 1, 1984. Rhode Island says you had to have been licensed before Dec. 27, 1984. And Texas seems the most confusing to me: If you were exempt from CE requirements before Oct. 31, 1991 then you still are. And finally West Virginia says you had to continually hold a license since July 1, 1969.
If you have questions on the applicability of these exemptions, please contact your state real estate commission for details.