Continuing Education in Real Estate – the Ups and Downs

We’re entering the season where continuing education (CE) grinds to a halt in favor of summertime client relationship management. Buyers spend the warm months browsing for homes, and so Agents spend their time showing houses, networking, and hoofing it around town for work, not trapped inside taking classes. Apart from giving Agents a breakdown of CE best practices, we also wanted to take this time to point out some common mistakes that mean downtime or decreased value for Agents.

Busy Seasons for Continuing Education in Real Estate

The busiest months for CE are December, January, and February. There are a few reasons for this: In all 3 months, the weather is cold and the Real Estate market is slow, meaning more free time to pursue education for Realtors. But since CE has to be accounted for every year, there are typically two types of Realtors: those that want to get the class done, and those that hold off until December.

Don’t Wait to Educate

Those that wait until December have a chance to run into issues. An Agent can always do CE online, but if you wait too long, you run the risk of there being no classes available. If an Agent fails to fulfill their CE hours for the year, their license is put on inactive status until they’ve completed the 7 hours required. And even though you can typically take the whole thing in one day, downtime is not an ideal situation in this business. If you ever want to get busy in this business, try to take a vacation or try to take a class. The moment you attempt to disappear, people start showing up, which is why people typically do CE in the wintertime. Our recommendation? Don’t wait – get it done in January.

Online vs. In-Person CE

We’re big proponents of in-person education, in a world increasingly digital. That’s not to say we’re anti-digital – quite the opposite. We wholeheartedly believe digital channels are a needed connection to clients, and should be utilized as such. But in an Industry built on face-to-face relationships, CE can be very beneficial for all Agents involved. A lot of the learning is not so much what the instructor teaches (which is a rubric set up by the Real Estate commission), it’s the 7-hour discussion among the agents sharing information, tips, and experiences. That’s the kind of experience that can’t be found online. If you’re serious about networking and learning, you should really consider doing these courses in person.

Summertime Frolicking

While there might not be CE classes in the summer, that shouldn’t let a savvy Realtor hold their thirst for knowledge back. Our CE Principal Instructor Scott Jones encourages his students to attend any sales meetings that their broker has during the summer. Even if a meeting means an hour not in the field showing, that hour among peers could be the opportunity to learn something valuable. You can get a lot of ideas from other people. It’s the perfect opportunity to even get out of the office and grab lunch!

To learn more about Continuing Education classes in Arkansas, visit ACES Real Estate’s website for upcoming courses.