Whether you fell into it or always wanted to sell real estate, you may have quickly learned that it can be a rewarding and satisfying job. Of course, you put in long hours and spend many evenings and weekends away from your family showing houses and commercial buildings to potential buyers. Nevertheless, helping individuals, families and business owners find just the right property is worth the many frustrations that come with the work.
Obtaining and maintaining your real estate license is a high priority, and the state of Arizona requires you to have such a license if you act as an agent for others looking to buy or sell property. This is why it is best to be aware of the potential risks to your license and take every step to avoid them.
Keeping it honest
You may spend days or weeks with a client, but if the client doesn’t close, it is time lost. Some real estate agents may feel it is acceptable to do whatever it takes to make the sale, even covering up issues with the home. Failing to disclose defects in the home is one of the most common reasons why an agent can get into trouble. It is important to know what Arizona law requires you to reveal and to always disclose something if you are in doubt.
Another type of dishonesty is committing mortgage fraud. This can be as complex as ripping off lenders for millions of dollars or as seemingly innocuous as overvaluing a property so the buyer can borrow extra from the lender to cover a down payment. Even actions that seem to be helpful to get your clients into a home can place your license in jeopardy if they are against the law.
Other common actions that place your real estate license at risk include these:
- Inaccurate bookkeeping
- Mismanagement of client’s money
- Conflict of interest between you and the buyer or seller, or undisclosed dual agency
- Violations of fair housing laws
- Handling contract matters or other legal issues that require a law license
- Allowing your license to expire by failing to pay your fees or keep up with educational requirements
The state of Arizona also prohibits people with criminal convictions from obtaining a real estate license, and if you have your license, you may lose it if you are facing criminal charges. For all issues related to obtaining or keeping your license, you would benefit from the guidance of an attorney with experience in professional licensing matters.