Last week we celebrated Veterans Day. We have many license holders who have served our country in the military. Your sacrifices have not gone unnoticed, and I am grateful for your service.
Thanksgiving will be here before we know it. I hope you enjoy Thanksgiving with friends and family. I am especially thankful that it seems we can gather more safely this year. This pandemic has lasted longer than I ever expected. I see a potential light at the end of the tunnel and look towards the future with hope.
This is a very interesting time in real estate. The market continues to be hot in many places. I recently read an article from the Texas Real Estate Research Center indicating that the frenzy may be waning. The Texas Real Estate Research Center is a treasure trove of information. Another recent article highlights the influx of new Texans from other areas of the country, with analysis indicating where these new Texans are coming from. (Spoiler alert: California.) This growth is true on the licensing side as well. We have a record number of real estate license holders in Texas—over the last decade, our license holders have grown 30% to more than 218,000 at the end of the fiscal year 2021.
The Commission has proposed rules for public comment at the November meeting. One of these proposed rules may be of particular interest to brokers and sales agents as it proposes changes to the point system used to become a broker. Amendments to rule §535.56 related to education and experience requirements for a broker license incorporates a new point system that is easier to understand. This simplified point system does not increase the requirements to obtain a broker’s license and is intended to streamline the broker license application process further. These amendments are based on recommendations made by the Broker Responsibility Working Group. I encourage all of you to review these proposed changes and provide feedback when the comment period opens.
As some of you may know, TREC is currently working towards a replacement of our licensing database. We are pleased to announce that we have published the Request for Offer (RFO). This RFO is a result of the tireless work of our team. We plan to have an entirely new database in place by mid-2023.
How does this affect you? It will streamline applications, allow for documents to be directly attached to your online application, manage your education, and allow for significantly more self-service. I am excited about this new database and look forward to the day I can tell you it is ready to use!
Returning to the Office
We are shooting to return to the office at the beginning of the New Year. We postponed this return this fall when the delta variant caused a surge. We will continue to watch the numbers and hold these plans to return to the office loosely, depending on what happens over the holidays. I also hope to begin welcoming our license holders back to our physical office in January 2022.
In a month in which we focus on thankfulness, I am reminded of how thankful I am to work for this Commission. We have a fantastic group of public servants, and I am thankful for our team. Enjoy your fall and the beginning of the holiday season. And as always, let me know if I can be helpful to you.