Tips & Advice
What types of service do real estate agents provide?
Agents provide a wide range of services that can help you make a speedy and profitable real estate transaction. Real estate agents can assist sellers with marketing their homes, and this includes things like coordinating open houses and scheduling photography that presents the home in an appealing manner on real estate websites. Agents can assist both buyers and sellers with all aspects of the negotiation process, with the aim of helping to maximize profits on the transaction. Finally, agents can also support both property managers and tenants with property rental.
How long does it take to become a real estate agent?
It's possible to get the licensing you need to become a real estate agent in just a few weeks. Some states require you to take pre-licensing coursework, and this can range from 45-75 hours or more. If you choose to train for licensing at a real estate school, the educational requirements can usually be met in four to six months. Online real estate schools are also available, and these allow students to proceed at their own pace. At an online school, a motivated student can complete the coursework necessary for licensing in a few short weeks.
What is the difference between a real estate agent and a broker?
There are key differences between a real estate agent and a broker. A broker is typically an owner of a firm or franchise, and these professionals handle such tasks as setting up earnest-money accounts and approving final contracts. Agents are employed by brokers, and they split their commissions with these professionals. Relative to agents, brokers typically have to deal with more exams and a larger course load to obtain licensing.
How can someone become a real estate agent?
To become a real estate agent, you'll need to prepare for and pass a licensing exam. Pre-license education hours may be required, and the exact amount varies from state to state. Once you've passed the exam, the next step is to connect with a real estate broker. Agents act on behalf of a broker, and are not allowed to handle real estate transactions independently. The broker will assist in completing the final paperwork that will allow you to manage real estate transactions in your state. Some states require a broker to sponsor an agent prior to the agent's licensing exam.
What is a real estate agent?
A real estate agent is a professional who represents clients who are purchasing, selling, renting, or leasing property. Real estate agents need to be licensed in order to practice. These individuals usually work solely on commission, so it's necessary for them to close deals if they hope to generate income.
What type of confidentiality guarantees do private investigators offer?
Private investigators do not officially have to guarantee confidentiality within the same stringent set of regulations that govern attorney-client confidentiality. Most good PIs will not only have an explicit clause in their written material guaranteeing they’ll keep private information secure, but will have references to corroborate that they’ve done this in their previous assignments.
What are the primary services that private investigators provide?
Private investigators primarily do background checks, perform surveillance (most often to corroborate infidelity suspicions), and gather evidence for civil investigations. They also do research on missing persons cases and domestic/family issues. Some private investigators have niche industry specialties such as process serving and insurance fraud investigation. Then there are corporate specialists who investigate potential business partners and employees. One primary function of private investigators for corporations is to implement other strategic security measures in the workplace, an offshoot of which is the “bug sweep.” It’s illegal for a private investigator to plant “bugs,” i.e., hidden listening/monitoring devices including wiretaps, but it’s not illegal for them to remove them from the premises where they were planted.
Do private investigators work with police?
Some private investigators work with police, and with the court system--some highly respected and experienced private investigators even assist state and federal law enforcement. PIs are called upon to support a broad range of functions, including search and surveillance, securing evidence, and giving testimony.
Can a private investigator tap phone lines?
A private investigator cannot wiretap phone lines without consent from at least one of the people who will be having the phone conversation--and in 12 states, a phone conversation cannot be recorded without all participants consenting in advance. Exact laws vary by state, however, a private investigator can legally sweep for hidden audio recording devices and get rid of them.
What limitations do private investigators have?
The limitations to which private investigators are subject depend on the state, but for the most part across all states, private investigators cannot pretend to be members of law enforcement, can’t use illegal methods in the course of their investigations, can’t trespass in a home or business, and can’t place a listening or tracking device without at least the primary party’s consent. In some states, they can wiretap phones if one party is aware, and, likewise, with recording conversations. They also can’t hack people’s emails or private online accounts. Nor can they collect private protected data on their subject without a subpoena. They can only put a GPS tracking device on a car if the owner of the vehicle approves it.