To implement provisions in the agency’s recent Sunset bill, TREC has proposed rules to eliminate instructor licensing. The proposed rules are expected to be adopted at the August Commission meeting with an effective date of September 1, 2019.
Beware of Possible Scams before Sending Money via Wire Transfer
Before wiring money for an escrow deposit or to close on a home purchase, License Holders should make sure to talk with their clients to ensure they are sending funds to the correct recipient and account. Consumers should not rely on instructions sent by email without contacting their broker or sales agent to verify the instructions are correct, since emails may be hijacked by potential scammers.
The 2019 Legislative Session concluded on May 27. With over 7,000 bills filed by legislators, this session was a busy one. While the Agency’s primary focus this session was on our Sunset legislation, we did keep our eye on the progress of several bills that could have impacted the Agency in one way or another.
The future of the Plumbing Board has been on the minds of many inspectors since the end of the legislative session. As a result of action taken by Governor Abbott, the Plumbing Board will continue until 2021; please be sure to see our article on this to get all the information you need.
As a result of changes recommended by TREC and implemented by the Agency’s sunset bill, a separate license certificate displaying the address for each branch office maintained by a broker or brokerage will no longer be required as of September 1, 2019,
Scott Kesner was appointed chair of the Texas Real Estate Commission on April 25, 2019. With more than 25 years of experience, this appointment is another highlight in Scott's long career. Chair Kesner recently traveled to Austin from his home city of El Paso to meet with Agency senior staff and learn more about the Commission. He spent the day speaking to each director, learning about everything from enforcement to communications to technology.
To implement provisions in the agency’s Sunset bill, the Commission has proposed rules to eliminate instructor licensing. The proposed rules are expected to be adopted at the August Commission meeting with an effective date of September 1, 2019. TREC will continue to approve and renew instructor licenses through August 31, 2019.
The 2019 Legislative Session is finished. While there was no legislative action that specifically relates to the regulation of inspectors, the Agency Sunset Bill passed, which deals directly with the regulatory authority of this Agency. Several other bills that impact the licensing authority of all regulatory agencies also passed. The Agency is determining what rules need to be recommended, some of which will likely come before the Inspector Committee at its July 15 meeting.
Flexibility Added for Posting a Link to IABS and Consumer Protection Notices
Effective December 6, 2017
Since February 2016, you are required to have a specific link for each of these notices in a readily noticeable location on the homepage of your business website. The Commission has adopted amendments to those rules that give you additional flexibility when posting the link to the Consumer Protection Notice.
Administrative penalties are not revenue -- the Commission doesn’t make money from administrative penalties. Instead, the money goes to a trust account to pay consumers for judgments against a license holder.
Texas Real Estate Commission adopted new advertising rules at its November meeting. These rules are effective as of May 15, 2018, which gives license holders 6 months to comply with the updated requirements.
§535.154 lays out alternate, assumed business and team name registration requirements and §535.155 lays out the revised advertising requirements. You can read both rules on our website.
TREC has been made aware of a scam requesting money from our license holders. The request is sent by text by someone posing as the Texas Real Estate Commission and asks that a specified amount be paid through Square Cash and provides a link to pay the amount (see example texts below).
Using Disclosure Forms And Contract Addenda Properly
Proper Use of Disclosure Forms
While a disclosure form is part of most real estate transactions, it is not a contract addendum. Since it is not a contract addendum, it should not be referenced in the “Agreement of the Parties” paragraph“ or otherwise made a part of the contract.
There has been a proliferation of the use of “coming soon” or “pocket” listings over the past year. While there may be legitimate reasons for the use of this marketing method, license holders should be aware that selling property using this method, under certain circumstances, may result in a complaint with the Commission and finding that the license holder has violated TREC laws and rules.
An Update on Customer Service From Tony Slagle, Deputy Executive Director
When I was named the Deputy Executive Director of TREC and the Deputy Commissioner of TALCB in August of this year, part of my expanded role at the agency was to focus on the agency operations, particularly the frontline customer service aspects of licensing and call center performance.
The agency has had quite a busy summer and the fall continues to bring a steady stream of challenges. As we continue working through all the issues which arise, especially through the Sunset process, know that we remain fully committed to exploring every effective option available to improve this agency’s performance. First and foremost, our mission has not changed and our dedication to accomplish it in the most effective, efficient and transparent manner is shared by our policymakers and o
From the Chair - Inspector Comittee - September 2018
I want to personally thank all of the inspectors who took time out of their schedules to make the trip to Austin to attend the August 13th Texas Real Estate Commission meeting in person. I know that your time is valuable and the TREI Committee and I always value your input and appreciate your continued interest and involvement.
The extended heat of August has been relieved a bit by rains in early September. I hope the typical market frenzy of summer has moderated a bit so you can focus on your professional development as well.
From the Executive Director: A Progress Report to Agency Stakeholders
The agency has committed to implement a variety of measures to improve our customer service. This is a quick review of what we have done so far and what additional steps remain to be implemented to enhance our responsiveness.
The Inspector Committee has had a busy couple of months since it last met in February. On March 26th, the Inspector Consumer Issues Working Group met to review issues regarding inspector financial responsibility and insurance requirements and to also make recommendations for the Committee to consider. In addition to the Inspector Committee members, the Working Group included Paul Roebuck representing TPREIA and Mike Hammel representing TAREI.
From The Executive Director - Inspectors - April 2018
It’s been a busy start of the year for the Commission. I traveled around the state in March as part of our Agency’s biennial strategic planning listening tour. This allowed me to receive input first hand from license holders across the state about issues that impact them directly. Tony Slagle, the agency’s inspector staff liaison visited a local chapter of an inspector trade association to discuss concerns and answer their questions. This is something staff is committed to doing more often.
The Commission held its regular quarterly business meeting on Monday February 12th during the Texas Association of REALTORS Winter meeting in Austin, and we offered real estate continuing education (CE) hours for attendance, so we had a number of extra license holders join us that day. The Commissioners re-elected Commissioner Arriaga as Vice-Chair and Commissioner TJ Turner as Secretary for the next 12 months.
SB 2212 makes changes to the regulations governing advertising for real estate brokers and sales agents.
It removes the current requirement that the advertiser be identified in each advertisement as a broker or agent, and clarifies that an advertisement is misleading if it fails to include the name of the broker, or if it implies that a sales agent is responsible for the operation of a brokerage.
Senate Confirms Appointments of Commission Members
TREC is pleased to announce the Senate confirmation of Governor Abbott's appointments to the Commission on May 21, 2017. Broker member Bob Leonard of San Antonio, broker member Rayito Stephens of Houston and public member TJ Turner of Austin.
The appointees will continue to serve the Commission and consumers of Texas until their terms expire. Read more on each of these appointees and the Commission on our "About the Commission" page.
The Texas Real Estate Commission is pleased to announce a series of public services announcements (PSAs). These PSA's highlight the agency's mission of consumer protection by providing valuable information for consumers and license holders. Click the links below to listen to the produced PSAs.