Parking Your Real Estate License While On Maternity Leave
Monday Jun 19th, 2017
You can argue that most Ontario realtors make their money exclusively on commissions. These real estate agents, for the most part, take on the position of an independent contractor - which essentially means their self-employed. It seems that the rules pertaining to employment in Ontario don't necessarily equate or are the same to it's full extent for self-employed real estate agents that are looking to go on maternity leave.
Real estate sales individuals that begin to ponder the possibility of maternity leave, would almost no doubt take into consideration certain factors when evaluating this particular decision - that which consists of a loss of earnings, recurring monthly fees, and the realization that wanting to take a long break from the realty sales industry being a very viable and possible option.
A common situation for a sales representative on maternity leave might look something like this:
She is most probably registered with a franchise Brokerage in Ontario that's a member of TREB (which is the abbreviated form for Toronto Real Estate Board) - or it can be their local board - it all really depends on where the Brokerage resides within the Province of Ontario. There are dues owing, such as expenses paid out to associations pertaining to those of CREA and OREA. As a result, any and all real estate agents tied to the aforementioned Brokerage, including those that are on maternity leave, will also be responsible for the same expenses - regardless of whether the agent is or isn't actively trading in real estate.
Don't wait by letting your real estate license lapse and potentially terminate. Park your license and keep it active. Inquiry today:
Some of the common fees that registered sales agents are responsible for paying amongst Brokerages could be monthly, advertising, desk, franchise, administration, transaction fees and dues, etc. Now in some cases, a Brokerage may not hold the agent on maternity leave accountable for some of the expenses listed above and waive them accordingly, but the real estate boards expenses are something that can't be avoided regardless of whether on maternity leave or not actively involved in sales.
Honest concerns may arise after going on maternity leave such as the same costs to continue operating in the sales field even though not actively participating in it. Another could be not bringing in as much money. Also possibly the feeling that she has no intention of going back to real estate any time soon as her family and baby have taken priority over it.
There's a lot of room for movement for Ontario realty agents that are ready to go on maternity leave. If the agent finds that the expenses with her current Brokerage becomes an issue, she can choose to resign and instead become a member of a Brokerage that is not part of any real estate board. Doing this can put her license on hold without any of the fees and dues that were previously discussed. This move would be putting a lot of money back into the pockets of the agent, let alone how much potentially saved based on an uncertainty of how long the maternity leave might take.
Money can still be made even though not actively involved in the industry. An agent can earn income by referring any business that comes their way to an agent or Brokerage of their choice, and in turn collecting on the referral fee. This can be done regardless of whether being registered with a Brokerage that is a board member or not. Referral commissions can continue to be earned and paid via her Brokerage, as long as said Brokerage is in good standing with the Real Estate Council of Ontario.
Hopefully with reduced expenses, and the ability to still earn an income by referring business will put any real estate agents mind at ease just a little bit more who end up going on maternity leave. Don't let your license lapse or unintentionally terminate. Park it today to keep it active. Best of luck to you!