State Roundup: New Mexico, West Virginia, and Ohio

July 1, 2005

New Mexico: Salesperson license eliminated

Candidates for real estate licensing in the state must take an additional 30 hours of prelicensing classes (for a total of 90 hours) and become associate brokers under a law change taking effect on Jan. 1, 2006. The changes in S.B. 267, which eliminates the sales associate license, are intended to increase professionalism in the ranks, says Wayne Ciddio, executive secretary of the state real estate commission, which sought them. Salespeople on the rolls as of Jan. 1 automatically will become associate brokers with no additional requirements. The commission has appointed a task force to flesh out the additional educational requirements. The REALTORS® Association of New Mexico supported the bill, said Peggy Comeau, the executive vice president.

West Virginia: Empowered assistants.

Secretaries of licensed real estate brokers and sales associates can set up appointments with buyers and sellers under a bill (H.B. 3016) passed this spring by the state legislature. The law was necessary because a state real estate commission rule required licensees to call clients to set appointments, creating unnecessary work for sales professionals, says P.C. Pancake, chair of the Government Affairs Committee for the West Virginia Association of REALTORS®, which sought the law change. The law takes effect in early July.

Ohio: Affordable living.

The area comprising Boardman, Warren, and Youngstown, Ohio, is the country’s most affordable housing market among metropolitan areas with populations greater than 500,000, says the National Association of Home Builders. In the area, which includes some neighborhoods across the Pennsylvania border, 90.2 percent of homes sold in the first quarter of 2005 were affordable to households earning the area median household income of $51,300. The median price of all homes sold in the area during that time was $86,000.

Robert Freedman

Robert Freedman is the former director of multimedia communications at NAR.

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