Illinois Real Estate Advertising Laws are Changing in 2020 and What this Means for Agents and Their Teams
On Aug. 9, 2019 Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed the revised Real Estate License Act (RELA or The Act) into law considered in a historic legislative session with unanimous vote from both the state house and senant. The goal of the RELA is to enhance consumer protections and strengthen rules for training and professionalism. The original version of the licensing law was set to end in 2019. This is due to statutes that require licensing laws to be revised every decade to reflect upon industry changes. But rather than completely do away with the RELA of 2000, a task force was formed to rewrite the current law that will go into effect in 2020. For the full Act, please see Real Estate License Act, 225 ILCS 454/1-1 et seq. Below are highlights of changes to keep in mind:
One of the newest focal points of the RELA, is to position the Real Estate industry to best serve its consumers in the new decade ahead. There have been 5 broad category changes in the RELA, some of which include Consumer Protection, Business Changes, Paperless Technology, Licensing/Management, and our main focus: Teams and Advertising.
Advertising and Teams
“Team”, in regard to the RELA, is now defined as: “Any two or more licensees who work together to provide real estate brokerage services, represent themselves to the public as being part of a team or group, are identified by a team name that is different than their sponsoring broker’s and sponsored by the same sponsoring broker.” In this sense, “Team” does not mean an isolated, separately organized or legal entity.
- Sponsoring Broker’s name and/or logo needs to be the same size or larger than the Team’s name and/or logo including social media and digital forums
- Managing brokers can now advertise as managing brokers, but not sponsoring managing broker (except yard signs)
- Team names cannot include misleading terms such as “company,” “realty,” “real estate,” “agency,” “associates,” “brokers,” “properties,” or “property.”
While it may seem clear to those who work in the industry, the public isn’t always aware that a Real Estate team is a group that works within the sponsoring brokerage company. In order to remain transparent with consumers, the RELA wants to ensure that the public knows when and if they are dealing with a licensed real estate brokerage company. This means that “Teams” should avoid the appearance that they are their own, entirely separate company when they are in fact a part of a sponsoring brokerage company.
New Managing Broker Type – “Designated” vs “Sponsoring”
The act creates a new classification of managing broker. A “designated managing broker” is a managing broker appointed by the sponsoring broker who has supervisory responsibilities for the licensees in one or multiple offices. The sponsoring broker is responsible for supervising all designated managing brokers, shall name a designated managing broker for each office, and notify the IDFPR.
Real Estate Broker’s can now be 18 years old (previously 21). Managing brokers must be at lease 20 years old (previously 21) and licensed for at least 2 consecutive years out of the preceding 3 years as a broker.
The “One-Click” Rule
In this digital driven new decade we’re approaching, The RELA will now incorporate the “one-click” rule. Summarized best as that a real estate licensee or brokerage can create a link or electronic information portal so long as all of the required information is incorporated in the content that populates on the device being used as a result of that “one click”.
For any other questions or details about your real estate license and how these new changes may effect you, call us at 773-325-2800 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.