Tak­ing up study chal­lenge

Changes to the real es­tate in­dus­try in­tro­duced through the Real Es­tate Agents Act 2008 have made it harder to gain a li­cence, but one Palmer­ston North sales con­sul­tant has taken up the chal­lenge of gain­ing the new qual­i­fi­ca­tions, Sue Emeny re­ports.

Manawatu Standard - Property Weekly - - Front Page -

Wendy Clap­per­ton has been li­censed to sell real es­tate for 15 years, so is well ex­pe­ri­enced in her field. But it wasn’t enough for Wendy to have her new li­cence granted au­to­mat­i­cally when the Real Es­tate Agents Act 2008 came into force, she chose to gain it the hard way.

‘‘When the new act came in, in Novem­ber 2009, ex­ist­ing sales peo­ple didn’t have to re­qual­ify, li­cences were granted au­to­mat­i­cally, but I thought I would quite like to study for it.

‘‘With 15 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence, I didn’t want peo­ple who were new to the in­dus­try hav­ing more qual­i­fi­ca­tions than me.’’

There are three qual­i­fi­ca­tions – the national cer­tifi­cate in real es­tate (sales­per­son) level 4, national cer­tifi­cate in real es­tate (branch man­ager) level 5 and the national diploma in real es­tate (agent) level 5.

Four train­ing providers, Real ITO, Open Poly­tech­nic, Unitec and Bay of Plenty Poly­tech­nic, of­fer real es­tate cour­ses and each of­fers a range of pro­grammes.

Wendy opted to study through Real ITO and en­rolled in 2010, com­plet­ing her national cer­tifi­cate in real es­tate (Sales­per­son) in around six months. It in­volved com­plet­ing 11 units and study costs were about $1100.

Wendy is around half­way through study­ing for her branch man­ager’s cer­tifi­cate. This in­volves com­plet­ing 21 com­pul­sory units and a min­i­mum of three elec­tives. Study­ing for this qual­i­fi­ca­tion car­ries a price tag of al­most $2000.

Once Wendy has gained that qual­i­fi­ca­tion, she will go on to gain an agent’s diploma for which 170 cred­its are re­quired and it costs $3000. cer­tainly not want to pay to do it.

‘‘I think it would be ben­e­fi­cial for ev­ery­one to do it.

‘‘As far as the qual­i­fi­ca­tions are con­cerned, the new act has made it more dif­fi­cult to move into the real es­tate pro­fes­sion. The study in­volved in get­ting a li­cence is more com­pre­hen­sive than it was. Work­ing in real es­tate is no longer just a fill-in job. It re­quires a huge com­mit­ment.’’

Wendy switched ca­reers from ac­coun­tancy to real es­tate sim­ply be­cause she wanted a change and the chal­lenge of be­ing self-em­ployed. It wasn’t an easy move.

‘‘You have to work very hard when you are start­ing out.’’

She moved from Pahiatua to Palmer­ston North 16 years ago. Af­ter at­tend­ing a ca­reers’ evening, Wendy de­cided on a ca­reer in real es­tate. She has been with Bay­leys for the past seven years.

‘‘I’m very achieve­ment ori­en­tated. I can work as hard as I like, I can work un­su­per­vised and as far as in­come is con­sid­ered, the sky’s the limit.’’ But it’s not all about mak­ing money. ‘‘Be­ing in real es­tate is re­ally re­ward­ing, par­tic­u­larly when you are help­ing peo­ple into their first home.

‘‘I like to be the best I can be. I’m not half hearted with any­thing I do.’’

Good liv­ing: Work­ing in the real es­tate in­dus­try has its re­wards, but it’s a pro­fes­sion that has be­come more dif­fi­cult to en­ter fol­low­ing changes to the Real Es­tate Agents Act.

Wendy Clap­per­ton

Wendy has to un­der­take her stud­ies in her own time, as work­ing at Bay­leys takes all her time.

‘‘I stud­ied for the sales­per­son’s cer­tifi­cate over about six months, fit­ting it around work. If I didn’t have to work on a Satur­day, then Satur­day af­ter­noon was my study time. I’d park my­self at home and hope the phone wouldn’t ring.’’

Wendy says she en­joyed un­der­tak­ing the course. It was a sub­ject she was fa­mil­iar with, as she does know all the ins and outs. How­ever, she says she is find­ing the next stage more chal­leng­ing.

‘‘It was good get­ting back into the study­ing habit.’’

Wendy is no stranger to study. She had com­pleted a busi­ness stud­ies de­gree in the 1980s and qual­i­fied as an ac­coun­tant.

When the new act came into be­ing a num­ber of cour­ses and sem­i­nars were held to ex­plain the changes, but Wendy didn’t feel these went far enough.

‘‘You didn’t get a true ap­pre­ci­a­tion of the changes. Af­ter study­ing I am now so much more aware of what our re­spon­si­bil­i­ties are.’’

She sug­gests oth­ers in her field take up the chal­lenge, but ac­knowl­edges ‘‘most sales­peo­ple would con­sider study­ing the last thing they would want to do in their spare time and they would

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