Ultimate Guide to Becoming an Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant


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If you have an interest in learning about the real estate profession, becoming an unlicensed real estate assistant is a great option.

Having a career in real estate is a great profession to have.  In a seller’s market, real estate agents make a lot of money.

However, in order to make that money, there are a lot of tasks that happen in a 30 day time frame.

As a result, licensed agents often need administrative help.  There are a lot of pieces that go into the equation for a real estate agent to earn that commission check.

That’s where unlicensed real estate assistants come in.  Unlicensed real estate assistants can do a lot of tasks such as acting as a “host” or “hostess” during open houses and assisting licensed agents.  They can also collect names and contact information from prospective buyers that attend open houses, hand out materials, place signs, and provide factual approved information at the open house.  Additionally, they can also do administrative tasks for the agent such as scheduling appointments, bookkeeping, and overall clerical office functions as well.  This frees up time for the agent to focus on higher-profit tasks.

If you are eager to learn the real estate business and think this profession is for you, check out the information below.

You will discover what the qualifications are for an unlicensed real estate assistant and also how to become an unlicensed real estate assistant as well.

Do Real Estate Agents Need Assistants?

Top-performing real estate agents need assistants all the time.  There is a higher demand for assistants when it is a seller’s market in the real estate industry.

Normally agents like to handle the higher and more profitable roles such as meeting with clients and securing listings for properties.  Additionally, they also put a lot of their time in driving clients around that are interested in buying property.  They utilize unlicensed assistants for a lot of clerical and office work.

Make no mistake, if the agent had to spend their time dealing with clerical office tasks, their ability to earn significant income would be severely hampered.

Most real estate agents can easily make $2,000 a month without a whole lot of effort.

Licensed vs. Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant 

Listed above are some of the duties of unlicensed real estate assistants.  Keep in mind that an unlicensed real estate assistant can only inform the public of factual items only.  They cannot hand out lock box codes, show properties, market properties, interpret contracts or purchase agreements, or provide any real estate services.

Licensed real estate agents on the other hand, have a more in depth role in real estate when it comes to their clients they are serving. They may deal more with issues that may arise from insured non-residential grant deeds and title companies.

When you are a licensed real estate agent, you have certain ethical and fiduciary responsibilities that you must uphold for your client.  It is the licensed agent’s obligation to be honest and work in the best interests for their clients.

Licensed agents are allowed to “run the numbers” with their clients so they can put their client in the best position possible based on what their needs are.  Licensed agents are allowed to negotiate deals and contracts which is something unlicensed assistants cannot do.

They can also show properties as well which cannot be done by an unlicensed assistant.

Additionally, they can also submit purchase agreements on behalf of clients as well.

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Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant Duties

Before you decide on a career as an unlicensed real estate assistant, it is important to know which real estate tasks require a licensed real estate salesperson and which tasks can be done by an unlicensed real estate assistant.

unlicensed real estate assistant duties

A lot of these laws and regulations vary from state-to-state so be sure to check with your state government licensing division or your state association of realtors board.

Those are the best sources of information to receive the most current and up to date information.  I have cited those sources below where it is applicable.

Some of the duties and tasks that you might think could be accomplished by an unlicensed real estate assistant in all actuality must be completed by a licensed real estate salesperson.

It is important to know the difference between licensed vs unlicensed real estate assistant.  There are a lot of tasks that unlicensed real estate assistants can do that are related to the field of real estate.

Working as an unlicensed real estate assistant is one of the best creative ways to make money in real estate.

These tasks will vary from state to state as some states have different guidelines and regulations on what an unlicensed real estate assistant can do.

You can check out our state guidelines section below from some of the most popular states.

These tasks below are generally the most common practices and duties of unlicensed real estate assistants.

Assist at Open Houses

Unlicensed real estate assistants can assist at open houses by acting as a “host” or “hostess” during the open house.  They can collect registrations and sign in information for prospective buyers.

They can also put signs up for the open house on streets and prepare any type of refreshments.

The unlicensed real estate assistant can’t be at the open house alone however.  The licensed agent or broker must be there.

Additionally, they can pass out prepared and approved handouts during the open house to prospective buyers.

Unlicensed real estate assistants should be careful at open houses because they are not allowed to discuss anything related to real estate (that is not of a factual nature) to prospective buyers.

Ordering, Installing, and Removing For Sale Signs

Unlicensed Real Estate Assistants can also order for sale signs to be installed for new listings from sign companies.

If you live in a metro area, chances are there is a sign post company that handles this task and you can order the install and removal of sign posts from them.

If there is not a company that handles this task in your area, you have other options such as metal framed for sale signs that can be installed with ease.

Unlicensed real estate assistants can do this task.

Can Make Bank Deposits (EMDs)

Normally the Broker of the real estate office is responsible for the earnest money deposits.

However, an unlicensed real estate assistant can take deposits to the bank for properties under contract to be deposited if the broker allows it.

State laws require a deposit to be made within a certain timeframe after there is a signed purchase agreement on a property.

This timeframe for the EMD to be deposited differs from state to state.

Set Appointments for Agent

One of the best time savers for a busy real estate agent is to have appointments set for new listings and clients.  An unlicensed real estate assistant can do this for the agent.

There are a lot of advantages to the agent by having their assistant set up the listing appointments for a new potential client.

If an agent has their appointments set, they can focus on other tasks such as completing a market analysis, running comps, and preparing material that would help a seller decide what is right for them when it comes to listing their property.

Document Preparation and Collection

closing document preparation by unlicensed assistants

Unlicensed assistants can also prepare documents for the agent as well on a whole range of issues.

This can range from open house material, to internal material for the agents eyes only, to marketing material that the agent may use for promotion and advertising.

If the material is for circulation and advertising, the information should be approved by the agent and broker since there are certain laws when it comes to advertising about what must be printed.

They can also assemble and make copies of closing packets.

Manage Social Media 

A lot of agents receive leads online.  As a result, any successful agent must have an online presence.

Unlicensed real estate assistants can assist with some social media management provided they follow the laws and regulations on what can and can’t be published online.

Conduct Bookkeeping

Unlicensed real estate assistants can conduct bookkeeping for the agent.  They can assist with the accounting for closing packets and making sure commission checks are disbursed properly.

Additionally, they can also pay the bills that are directly related to the real estate agent for real estate services.  Those might include services for digital photography and aerial drone images.

Other services would include MLS fees that have to be paid.

Make Service Calls for Agent

Unlicensed assistants can also order service repairs for properties as directed by agents.  A lot of agents own investment properties and some are also section 8 landlords that specialize in public assistance.

Often times, assistants can order repairs to be made on these properties.

Assist with Clients Moving

Unlicensed real estate assistants can also help a Realtor’s clients on moving logistics.  People who work in real estate in general know a lot of moving hacks to save money especially for out of state moves.

Unlicensed assistants could also help on some of the move logistics if the Realtor or Broker directs them to.

Popular States: Regulations for an Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant

Below you will find state regulations and resources for unlicensed real estate assistants by popular states.

What can an Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant do in California?

The California Department of Real Estate has excellent resources for what unlicensed real estate assistants can do.

According to section 10131 of the California Business and Professions Code there are a lot of activities unlicensed assistants can perform.

  • In California, unlicensed real estate assistants can assist licensees at an open house with the principals consent.
  • They can greet the public as they come in, place open house signs around the neighborhood, and discuss factual items only.
  • Unlicensed assistants can also conduct, create, and prepare a competitive market analysis for the licensee.
  • They can prepare documents as long as the final version is reviewed by licensee before it is disbursed to all parties involved or for the public.

What can an Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant do in Colorado?

The Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies Division of Real Estate has Commission Position Statement 20 which details the activities that are allowed for unlicensed real estate assistants.

Some of the highlights are listed below but be sure to refer to Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies Division of Real Estate for Commission Position Statement 20 for details.

  • Distribute preprinted information that is objective in nature prepared by the broker about a property for sale.
  • Perform clerical duties.
  • Deliver paperwork that requires signatures for financing documents that are prepared by loan officers and/or lenders.
  • Schedule property repairs on behalf of the broker if there is an agreement that authorizes the broker to do so for the property.

Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant in Florida

The Florida Real Estate Commission has a great resource that provides details on permitted duties for unlicensed real estate assistants.

The Florida Real Estate Commission Guidelines for Unlicensed Assistants provides the extensive list of permitted activities.

  • Assemble closing packets and documents for closing.
  • Receive, record, and deposit earnest money, security deposits, and advance rents.
  • Receive phone calls and forward them onto appropriate licensed sales staff.
  • Order items of repair as directed by licensee.
  • Place and install signs on properties for sale and for open houses.
  • Distribute objective and written information on a rental or listing.

Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant in Georgia

The Georgia Real Estate Commission has rules and regulations in the Georgia Administrative Code specifically Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. 520-1-.07 that details permitted duties of unlicensed assistants.

Below are some of the tasks that support personnel may perform.

  • Answer phone and forward calls along with emails to a licensee.
  • Check on the status of loan commitments after a contract has been executed.
  • Closing packet and document assembly.
  • Place and remove real estate signs.
  • Compute commission checks.

These are some of the most popular states when it comes to state guidelines for unlicensed real estate assistants.  If you are a licensed agent and have questions, be sure to check with your legal representation of your brokerage or state association of realtors for further legal direction.

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How to Become an Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant

If you are interested in learning the real estate industry, but not ready to commit to obtaining a license, then employment as an unlicensed real estate assistant could be a great option for you.

how to become an unlicensed real estate assistant

Working as an unlicensed real estate assistant includes working for a brokerage, an investor, or even for a team of realtors.   Anybody who is licensed and busy with real estate transactions has a use for an assistant.

You can become an unlicensed real estate assistant by joining real estate investment groups, contacting local local real estate brokerages, and also checking job postings for real estate offices.

Additionally, you can reach out to the top-performing agents in your community directly.

Check out the detail below on these options.

Join a Real Estate Investment Group

One of the best places to become an unlicensed real estate assistant would be to join a real estate investment group.  If you ultimately want a career in real estate or work for yourself as an investor, this is your best option.

  • There are tons of these groups on Facebook that you can join that have hundreds of active members who have a passion to invest in real estate and know the process well.

Some of these members are licensed agents in addition to being a group member who invests in real estate.

I am a member of a real estate investment group and also a licensed agent so I can speak from experience these groups are your best option to learn and also get hired as an assistant for someone.

Working in real estate is one of the 5 Flexible Jobs Where You Can Earn Over $100,000 if you stick with it.

Additionally, these real estate investment groups often have local meetups.  You can attend these meetups and also network with investors in person as well.

So if you are looking to shadow someone as an unlicensed assistant in real estate, joining a real estate investment group is a great option.

Contact Local Real Estate Offices

With the power of the internet, locating the top producing real estate offices in your area is an easy task to complete.  I can think of several well known real estate offices in my area that I regularly see on TV or hear on the radio.

  • You can send a letter, or email to the broker explaining your intentions to work as a real estate assistant for them.  Additionally, you can follow this up with a phone call a week after you send your letter or email.

Following up with a phone call is a great way for you to show your dedication and is also a great way to open the door for you into this field.

If the real estate office does not need any assistants when you call, don’t lose hope.  Real Estate Offices have cyclic business patterns and are always more busy during the spring time, than winter and around holiday months.

By following up with a phone call, they will remember your name and might contact you when their demand increases usually in the spring time.

Search Job Boards for Real Estate Assistants

Another great way how to become an unlicensed real estate assistant is to search job boards.

  • You can search job board for positions such as “Real Estate Office Assistant” or “Real Estate Office Clerical” which will offer a lot of options for employment.

By using a job board, you can determine which real estate offices near you are hiring assistants.

Posting on Facebook Real Estate Pages

Posing an inquiry on Facebook Real Estate Pages is a great way to also contact real estate offices regarding becoming an unlicensed real estate assistant.

Any reputable real estate company will contact you.

Additionally, they may also keep your contact information for future openings down the road if there are not currently any openings for real estate assistants.

Contact Real Estate Boards

Another great options how to become an unlicensed real estate assistant is to contact local real estate boards.

  • The majority of agents in the United States are members of local real estate boards.

By contacting the local real estate member boards, you can reach hundreds if not thousands of agents in your area for real estate assistant opportunities.

Attend Meetups for Real Estate Agents

Attending a meetup is a great way how to become an unlicensed real estate assistant.  Often times real estate agents have meetups with other agents.

Attending one of these meetups is a great way to network with agents who might be looking for an unlicensed assistant.

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Working Real Estate Assistant Jobs as an Unlicensed Real Estate Assistant

One of the best ways to start a career in real estate is to work real estate assistant jobs so you can learn the profession from the ground up. While you won’t be able to give advice on the best ways to invest 50k in real estate, you can do other functions.

Becoming an unlicensed real estate assistant is a great way to gain valuable experience if you are considering becoming an licensed real estate agent.

Real estate agents are always in need of assistants because they need to spend majority of their time meeting with clients, negotiating real estate contracts, and showing property.

They don’t have the time to handle the ay to day administrative functions.  That is why an unlicensed real estate assistant can be a huge asset to an agent.

Understanding the differences between a licensed vs. unlicensed real estate assistant is key to determining what duties are permitted by law for the unlicensed assistant to complete.

If this real estate assistant job is something you are interested in pursuing, there are plenty of options how to become an unlicensed real estate assistant.

Some of those ways include joining real estate investment groups, reaching out to real estate offices in the area, and also attending meetups with agents in the area for networking.

If you want to learn more about the real estate profession and want to get paid doing it, then becoming an unlicensed real estate assistant is a great opportunity to consider.

BG Vance

For over 20 years, BG Vance has been a leader in public and personal financial management. He's developed and managed public budgets in excess of hundreds of millions of dollars. He is passionate about the FIRE movement and was featured in the Detroit News in 2001 about saving for retirement. Through the years, he's assisted families and individuals with getting their finances on track. He holds an MPA, is a licensed Realtor, and is currently working on a book about personal finance.

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