Are there different exams for residential and commercial real estate agents?

Question by fxlrner: Are there different exams for residential and commercial real estate agents?
I’m looking into becoming a commercial real estate agent, do I have to take a different exam than if I wanted to work as a residential agent or is it the same test for everyone?
Do you guys have any tips on what kinds of things I should learn to go into commercial real estate?

Best answer:

Answer by Sharon
In Maryland it’s the same exam. I believe it’s the same in most states.
That said, you do need additional training, once you’re licensed, if you want to get into commercial. It’s very different from residential.

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3 Responses to Are there different exams for residential and commercial real estate agents?

  1. godged says:

    A Realtor is a Realtor. For those looking for a commercial niche, they take CCIM courses and obtain that designation.

  2. Philly Broker says:

    Exams are the same.

    To start, get familiar with letters of intent, type of leases (triple net, gross, etc.), learn commercial real estate math (know what a cap rate is and how to calculate it, and conversely how to derive property value from it….also, depending on the type of commercial business you’re involved in you may need to understand more complex math equations like cash-on-cash return, internal rate of return, net present value among other calculations.

    Also, pick an area of focus – don’t try to be all things to all people – focus on one speciality like office, or pick retail, or perhaps industrial – but not all three.

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    Additional Comments:

    I disagree with godged comments “For those looking for a commercial niche, they take CCIM courses and obtain that designation.”

    You don’t find your niche based on taking CCIM courses and obtaining the designation – these are unrelated. Although the CCIM designation is a great one to have, you need to get some experience under your belt – not only do I say so, but the CCIM Institute says so as well – they have a volume requirement in order to obtain the designation –

    http://www.ccim.com

    1. Ten qualifying activities that total $ 10 million or more; or

    2. $ 40 million in volume regardless of the number of activities; or

    3. Thirty qualifying activities regardless of the volume

    Your best bet is to research different commercial brokerages and their areas of specialty – and line up “informational interviews” – and interview them instead of the other way around – see if you can ride along with a broker for a few hours – offer to buy him lunch – find out what it’s really like to be an office broker, for example.

  3. acermill says:

    State licensure exams for real estate are the same, regardless of the area of practice. However, additional training is recommended, if not mandatory, to get involved in higher end commercial activity (as opposed to light commercial). Residential/light commercial is a completely different animal than is commercial real estate.