Important Real Estate Transition News – IDFPR Releases Combined Transition/Renewal Application

On February 1, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation released a new salesperson-to-broker transition application that combines the transition AND renewal fees on the same form.  Starting today, you MUST use this combined form.  There is a new online and paper-based application available at the IDFPR’s website.  Here’s a link to the application forms. All Real Estate Institute students who complete our 30-credit-hour transition course will receive the new combined application with their certificate of completion along with an envelope addressed to the IDFPR.  Your application, certificate and fees must be postmarked on or before April 30, 2012. 

 Please note: Salespersons who fail to meet the April 30, 2012, transition deadline will lose their licenses.  There is no late renewal. A salesperson who does not transition will need to take a 90-credit-hour broker pre-license course and pass the state exam to continue earning commissions and referrals.

If you have questions about the new combined transition/renewal application, please call the IDFPR at 217-782-3414.  If you have questions about satisfying the transition education and testing requirements, we have the following comprehensive resources available for you:

  • Transition Education Requirements and Online Enrollment – click here and select your license type.
  • Transition Frequently Asked Questions – click here.
  • Continuing Education Frequently Asked Questions – click here.
  • Transition/Renewal Next Steps – after you have completed your education and testing, click here for instructions on what you do next.
  • Real Estate Institute customer service representatives are available Monday – Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer your questions and complete your enrollment.  Call 800-995-1700.

READY, SET, TRANSITION! IDFPR Applications Are Now Available

This week, the applications that are required to complete the Illinois real estate license transition became available from the IDFPR.  The online and paper applications can be accessed at the department’s website:  http://www.IDFPR.com/REtransition.

Please note:  The online / electronic application is only available to licensees who elected to transition by completing the proficiency examination.  Licensees who opted to complete the transition education program (which we strongly recommend) are required to submit the paper application. 

The obvious question that follows is … WHY?  The paper form is necessary because there is currently no process for approved schools to electronically report transition course completions to the IDFPR.  As a result, licensees are required to submit an original copy of their certificate(s) of completion to the IDFPR with their paper application.  Without a copy of the certificate(s), it won’t be possible for the department to verify that the transition requirements were satisfied – so don’t forget to provide this additional paperwork when submitting your application!

The IDFPR has established an electronic reporting process for proficiency exam completions.  This one was a bit easier because all of the reporting comes from one vendor – Applied Measurement Professionals (AMP), the company responsible for creating, maintaining, and grading the proficiency exam.  It’s not clear how often AMP will be reporting course completions to the IDFPR, so you may not be able to file your online application immediately after passing the proficiency exam.   (We’ve already heard from some students who ran into this “roadblock.”)

As a reminder, we offer convenient self-study programs that allow you to satisfy the transition requirements.  Call or visit our updated transition website today!

Inside the Illinois Proficiency Exam Pilot

 During the month of November, the Real Estate Institute helped Applied Measurement Professionals (AMP) test the Illinois Proficiency Exams for the upcoming real estate transition.  As part of the amendments to the Real Estate License Act of 2000, licensees will have a choice of facing the proficiency exam or taking coursework to earn the right to transition to the new license titles.  A passing score on the exam will allow licensees to transition without taking the 30-hour or 45-hour post-license education courses.   The exam is expected to be available to all licensees in January 2011. 

Keeping You Honest
The purpose of the proficiency exam pilot program was to verify the suitability of the exams for use as the Real Estate Transition Proficiency Examinations for both the salesperson-to-broker transition and the broker-to-managing broker transition.  Real Estate Institute participated in the pilot with the cooperation of about 140 brave licensees. 

According to Alan Toban, founder of the Real Estate Institute, the reactions of the test takers were mixed.  “I heard people say that it was a little difficult for them, but seemed like a fair exam for a current licensee.” 

Deborah Hammersmith, Real Estate Institute receptionist, observed the crowds after the exam.  She noted, “After the exam, the test takers congregated to ask each other how they responded to particular questions.  They discovered that they all did not have the same exam and that questions varied.  They all acted like this was a big surprise!”

Years in the Business – No Guarantee
At the other end of the spectrum, Alan said, “A few seasoned salespersons and brokers found the exam very challenging and questioned whether they will pass. They were stunned that, after being in the business for so long, they didn’t know everything!” 

Clearly a passing score is not guaranteed by your years in the business.  Alan further explains, “It’s been a long time since some of these folks studied for their license, and a lot has changed. The additions that were included this year alone caught many agents off guard.  Do you know the differences among a ‘broker,’ a ‘managing broker,’ a ‘sponsoring broker’ and a ‘broker who manages’?”

PREP-to-PASS
The exams, which were given on paper, will now be scored by AMP, and any comments about particular questions from those who took the exam will be reviewed. (Later, the Real Estate Institute will make the exam available online for instant scoring.)   AMP will also check for any questions that seem to create a problem for a disproportionate number of candidates.  The bottom line is: Don’t think you are going to waltz into this test and ace it.  According to Alan, “You do need to be proficient.”

The reactions of the pilot test takers confirmed Alan’s suspicions that test preparation would be beneficial.  “With only one opportunity to pass the proficiency exam, I recommend a good exam prep tool to refresh your knowledge and, in some cases, introduce you to new laws that you may not be aware of.”