Frequently Asked Questions

Mutual recognition of a Sales Registration Certificate

A sales certificate is not mutually recognised outside of the State or Country it was issued. However the training you attended to achieve that sales certificate will be recognised by any RTO (Registered Training Organisation) in Australia. You will need to apply for RPL (Recognition of Prior Learning) and provide evidence of your knowledge skill and experience. The RTO will then identify any gaps in your knowledge and recommend appropriate training for you to complete. Harcourts Academy can provide RPL for you in some Australian regions. Through our internal website we deliver state and country specific gap learning via online learning - a fun and interactive way to up skill from your computer anywhere, anytime.

Contact the Academy in your region for more information and to register for RPL.

Mutual recognition of a Real Estate Licence

While qualifications are not mutually recognised, current and operating licenses are. If you have a current operating licence it will receive mutual recognition in all states and territories of Australia or New Zealand. Do not notify your current governing body of your move until you have applied for and received your licence in the town / country you are moving to. Once your licence has become inoperable you will not receive mutual recognition.

Yes, the Academy offers the following programs entirely online:

Programs at some Real Estate training institutions focus on 'what' to know and do. Harcourts Academy programs also focus on 'how' and therefore favour in classroom training delivery where participants can take a more hands-on approach to learning.

Sales Program

Yes, you can attend Getting Started the Harcourts Way.

The cost of attending the Getting Started the Harcourts Way as a non-Harcourts member is $1,690. If you secure a position with a Harcourts office prior to attending the training you receive a $1,000 sponsorship from Harcourts, and the cost to you will be $690. The program is a crucial part of our culture and covers how to perform successfully using Harcourts specific systems and tools.

Property Management

Yes, you can attend the Property Management Program.

The cost of the Property Management Program is $1,300. If you secure a position with a Harcourts office prior to attending the training you receive a $1,000 sponsorship from Harcourts, and the cost to you will be $300. The cost of gaining your property management registration through Harcourts is an additional $50.00 per qualification unit and must be completed in conjunction with the Property Management Program.

All other Harcourts training programs

No, you cannot attend any other program as the leadership programs, technology training, sales workshops and more are provided exclusively for Harcourts team members only.

Academy programs include Sales, Property Management, Leadership, Administration, Technology and other specialist fields.

Some popular programs include:

There are a number of ways to enrol in most Academy programs:

  • Contact your nearest Academy office and ask to speak to the Academy Trainer or Administrator.
  • Harcourts One members can enrol online using the Event Calendar on the home page.

For further enrolment enquiries contact the Academy.

Australia

In Australia, to be eligible for a real estate salesperson certificate and licence, you must:

  • be 18 years or over
  • be a suitable person †
  • have completed the required training units through a registered training organisation.

† An individual is considered suitable if they:

  • have not been convicted in the previous five years of a serious offence which is punishable by three or more years imprisonment
  • are not disqualified from holding a licence or registration certificate
  • are not recorded in the register of disqualified company directors under the Corporations Act 2001.

New Zealand

To be eligible for a salesperson's licence in New Zealand you must:

  • be at least 18 years of age
  • not be prohibited from holding a licence under section 37 of the Real Estate Agents Act 2008
  • be a fit and proper person †
  • have a prescribed qualification (Qualifications can be provided by the Harcourts Academy)

† Fit and proper relates to your character and standing in the community. If you have convictions that would make a reasonable person think twice about allowing you access to their property or family, contact the REAA before starting study for a real estate qualification.

A person in New Zealand is ineligible to hold a real estate licence if (amongst other exclusions):

  1. They have been convicted, whether in New Zealand or another country, of a crime involving dishonesty (or of a crime that, if committed in New Zealand, would be a crime involving dishonesty) within the 10 years preceding the application for a licence.
  2. They have been convicted of an offence under sections 14, 17 to 22, or 24 of the Fair Trading Act 1986, within the five years preceding the application for a licence. Before undertaking any training, contact the REAA to confirm your eligibility to hold a licence:

Phone: 0800 367 7322 or +64 4 471 8930
Fax: 04 815 8468
Email: info@reaa.govt.nz

Where do you live?


Australia

To become a real estate consultant in Australia you need to gain your Real Estate Salesperson's Certificate. It is a legal requirement.

Sales Registration can be gained through the Harcourts Academy's Sales Program. This involves:

  1. Completing approximately 4 hours of online learning prior to the commencement of the Sales Program classroom training
  2. Attending 4 days Sales Program - Getting Started the Harcourts Way - classroom training
  3. Receiving a Statement of Attainment certificate from Harcourts Academy
  4. Submitting the Statement of Attainment with an application form to the Office of Fair Trading
  5. Receive the official Sales Registration Certificate from the state governing body in 1 to 8 weeks

45 days later students complete a further 1 day of training after some in-the-field experience.


New Zealand

To become a real estate consultant in New Zealand you need to gain a National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson). It is a legal requirement.

In Australia, a sales certificate and licence are not the same thing:

  • A Sales Certificate of Registration will enable you to sell Real Estate
  • A Real Estate Licence will enable you to own and / or manage a Real Estate Office

Please provide us with the following so we may help you further.

  • What country you live in or wish to work in
  • What suburb / area you would like to work from
  • Whether you are existing or new to the Real Estate industry
  • What position within Harcourts you would like to obtain (sales person, management, property management or administration)

Contact your local Academy with this information, they will be able to point you in the right direction and provide you with information on Harcourts offices in your target area and their contact details.

Why choose Harcourts?

Australia and New Zealand

To become a real estate Property Manager in Australia or New Zealand you need a Real Estate Salesperson's Certificate. For this you will need to provide your State or region's Real Estate governing body:

  • A Statement of Attainment for required training completed
  • A correctly completed application form
  • Payment of required fees.

The Harcourts Academy currently offers a Property Management Program across Australia and New Zealand. Qualifications for Property Management registration can be issued in New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia and Tasmania. In South Australia, it is not required to obtain a registration to work in the Property Management industry.

Cost involved

The cost of the Property Management Program is $1,300. If you secure a position with a Harcourts office prior to attending the training you receive a $1,000 sponsorship from Harcourts, and the cost to you will be $300.

Australia

To become a real estate salesperson in Australia you need a Real Estate Salesperson's Certificate. For this you will need to provide your State or region's Real Estate governing body:

  1. A Statement of Attainment for required training completed
  2. A correctly completed application form
  3. Payment of required fees

Harcourts Getting Started the Harcourts Way provides you with the required training for you to be a real estate sales person. Upon successful completion of the Harcourts Sales Program you will achieve a Statement of Attainment and we can also assist you to complete the application form.

Cost involved

The cost of the Sales Program is $1,690. If you secure a position with a Harcourts office prior to attending the training you receive a $1,000 sponsorship from Harcourts, and the cost to you will be $690.

What changes does the new Real Estate Agents Act make?

The key changes introduced by the new Act are:

  • agents, branch managers and salespersons must all be licensed individually
  • an independent Real Estate Agents Authority is established that is responsible for licensing, complaints, disciplinary action in relation to unsatisfactory conduct, industry standards, and providing information for consumers
  • new complaints and disciplinary processes, including the appointment of Complaints Assessment Committees and the establishment of an independent Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal
  • new responsibilities apply to real estate licensees, including duties in relation to the information that must be provided to consumers
  • it is no longer compulsory for agents to be members of the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ).

Why was the law changed?

In 2007 the Government issued a public consultation paper, The Government's Preferred Options for Reform of the Real Estate Agents Act 1976. The report identified a number of issues that needed to be addressed, including:

  • a need for more independent oversight of entry standards, conduct and complaints handling
  • consumers did not have sufficient information about how to make complaints
  • there was a lack of independence and transparency in the complaints process, and penalties were inadequate
  • consumers needed more information when buying or selling property.

What do the new licensing requirements mean for consumers?

All agents, branch managers and salespersons have to be licensed and consumers have better access to information about people working in the industry. There is a public register which shows who has a licence, and records whether a licensee has had any disciplinary action taken against them as an individual in the last three years by the Authority or the Real Estate Licensing Board.

How does the Real Estate Agents Authority benefit consumers?

The independent Real Estate Agents Authority began issuing licences and receiving complaints on 17 November 2009. The Authority plays a key role in ensuring the quality and professionalism of the industry. The Authority:

  • provides a code of professional conduct and client care for agents, branch managers and salespersons
  • oversees licensing of all real estate agents, branch managers and salespersons
  • provides information for consumers
  • investigates complaints.

What does the new complaints process involve?

One of the main concerns about the 1976 Act was that consumers did not have ready access to an independent complaints and disciplinary process. Under the new Act people are able to take a complaint about a licensee or a former licensee to the Real Estate Agents Authority, which refers the complaint to a Complaints Assessment Committee to investigate. This process is fair and impartial for consumers and for agents, branch managers and salespersons.

A Complaints Assessment Committee is able to deal with the complaint in several ways, including by directing that the parties explore the possibility of resolving the complaint by negotiation, conciliation or mediation. Where a Committee finds that the licensee has engaged in unsatisfactory conduct, it has a range of measures at its disposal to deal with the complaint, such as:

  • reprimanding the agent, branch manager or salesperson
  • requiring the agent, branch manager or salesperson to do any of the following:
    • make an apology
    • undergo further training
    • refund fees
    • rectify an error
    • pay a fine of up to $10,000 in the case of an individual or $20,000 in the case of a company
    • pay the complainants costs of the inquiry or investigation.

The Real Estate Agents Authority contains information on how to make a complaint.

What happens in serious cases?

In serious cases appearing to involve misconduct, a Complaints Assessment Committee can lay a charge with the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal.

If the Disciplinary Tribunal determines that the licensee is guilty of misconduct it can impose a more serious range of penalties, including:

  • cancelling or suspending the agent's, branch manager's or salesperson's licence
  • ordering the licensee's employment be terminated and order that no agent employ or engage that person in connection with any real estate agency work
  • ordering the licensee to pay compensation to the complainant for any actual loss suffered up to $100,000.

Can decisions of the Complaints Assessment Committee and the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal be appealed?

A decision made by a Complaints Assessment Committee on a complaint can be appealed to the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal. A decision of the Disciplinary Tribunal can be appealed to the High Court, whose decision is final, apart from questions of law, which can be appealed to the Court of Appeal.

Who sits on the Real Estate Agents Authority and the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal?

The Real Estate Agents Authority has seven members appointed by the Minister of Justice, with members representing a broad range of interests, including consumer and industry interests. The Chairperson must be a lawyer with not less than seven years legal experience. Two members must be licensees or former licensees. Details of the current Board can be found on the Real Estate Agents Authority website.

Complaints Assessment Committees are appointed by the Authority and must have three members, one of whom must be an Authority member. One member must be a lawyer with not less than seven years legal experience.

The Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal will have a Chairperson and up to four other members, who are also appointed by the Minister of Justice. The Chairperson must be a barrister or solicitor with not less than seven years legal experience. One member must be a member of the real estate industry. The Disciplinary Tribunal is serviced by the Ministry of Justice.

Do the law changes affect what I pay for real estate services?

Fees and commission continue to be something that clients should negotiate with their agent.

What if I bought or sold my property before 17 November 2009?

The terms of the 1976 Act will continue to apply to any contracts or agreements entered into prior to 17 November 2009.

If a complaint has been made about an event that occurred before 17 November 2009, but the complaint was not dealt with under the 1976 Act by that time, a Complaints Assessment Committee may consider the complaint. The Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal may also hear a charge.

In these circumstances, a complaint can only be made about something that could have been the subject of a complaint under the 1976 Act, and the orders that can be made are restricted to those that would have been available under the 1976 Act.

How can I find out more?

You can find out more in the consumer section of the Real Estate Agents Authority website, or by contacting the Real Estate Agents Authority.

How many papers are in the new salesperson entry level qualification?

The National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) is the new entry level qualification for salespersons. The qualification is made up of 11 unit standards, compared to 6 in the old ‘Salespersons’ Certificate’ qualification.

How do I register to attend the new salesperson entry level qualification?

Registering to attend the National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) through the Academy follows the same process that was required when registering for the old 'Salespersons' Certificate' course.

Members of the public

Contact the Academy.

Harcourts One members

Go to National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) > Pre-Course Pack – Auckland+Central+Northland, South Island or Wellington. Complete the paperwork and post to the Academy. Further details are outlined in the pre-course packs.

What employment contracts do our new recruits start on?

New recruits that are in the process of completing the National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) are employed on the 'Agreement for Provision of Administration Assistant Services'.

Harcourts One members

To access a copy of this Agreement go to National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) > Agreement for Provision of Administration Assistant Services.

Why do we use this employment contract?

Our recruits are required to be in employment so that they may have a studycontract with the REAL ITO in order to complete the qualification. Under the Real Estate Agents Act 2008, as the recruits are not licensed sales consultants, they cannot be employed as 'independent contractors' like they were under the RealEstate Agents Act 1976. Recruits will move onto the standard sales consultants 'independent contractor' arrangement once they become licensed.

What time frame do I allow in Clause 1 of the Agreement for Provision of Administration Assistant Services?

1. This contract shall commence on ................[Date] and expire on ...............[Date] unless the term is extended by a fresh agreement in writing.

It is suggested that you allocate three months as this will allow time for both study and the licensing process.

Do I have to enter an hourly rate as per Clause 3 of the Agreement for Provision of Administration Assistant Services?

3. The contract rate applicable to the Services provided under this agreement is $ ……..per hour. If the Contractor is registered for GST and provides a GST invoice, the Company will also pay GST in addition to the contract rate.

Yes, you are required to enter an hourly rate for the contract to be valid. Choose a minimum wage rate such as $15 per hour.

Do I have to pay the recruit the agreed hourly rate?

No, you do not have to pay the recruit because you will make it very clear to the new recruit that your franchise will not be requiring them to provide 'administrative assistant services' as per Clause 2 of the Agreement for Provision of Administration Assistant Services. No services provided means no payment.

2. The Contractor agrees to provide administrative assistant services (“the Services”) to the Company from time to time as agreed between them, depending upon demand for the Services, the availability of the Contractor to provide the Services, and various other contingencies.

How much does the National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) cost?

The costs associated with the National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) is $995 for the 11 unit standards.

All costs are including GST.

What additional costs may a new salesperson incur?

Salespersons new to the industry and Harcourts may incur the following additional costs:

What does the Open Polytechnic charge for their National Certificate in Real Estate (Salesperson) course?

The Open Polytechnic publishes the cost of their National Certificate (Salesperson) course on their website. View their prices.