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Many in Malaysia dream of becoming real estate agents due to the belief that most of them have exciting and luxurious lifestyles. They wear posh clothes, drive expensive cars and own more than one property.

But behind the success of every estate agent is a great amount of effort and hard work, as it’s not easy to become a licensed property agent. So we’ve crafted a guide to help you become one, and for you to know the benefits of the profession.

Perks of Being a Property Agent

Before going to the particulars of how to become an agent, it’s vital to keep in mind that this is a very industrious profession that requires long working hours – even during holidays. Apart from dealing with demanding and hard-to-please clients, agents do not receive fixed monthly salaries. Hence surviving when the property market is slow may be difficult.

Nonetheless, successfully negotiating a transaction is not only financially rewarding but can feel emotionally satisfying, particularly when you help a family purchase their dream home or assist in selling an overlooked but exceptional property.

Different Types of Property Professionals

In Malaysia, there are generally two kinds of professionals that assist in property transactions, whether selling or rental. These are real estate negotiators (REN) and real estate agents (REA).

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The former doesn’t enjoy the latter’s full privilege but are still registered with the Board of Valuers, Appraisers, Estate Agents and Property Managers (BOVAEA). They are also required to complete the two-day Negotiator’s Certification Course, through which they learn the fundamentals of estate agency work and the best industry practices, along with the rules and regulations.

Negotiators are required to work for a property company so that they can legitimately practice their trade. For every licensed agent, a property firm can have up to 20 negotiators, but it can apply to hire up to 30 negotiators provided they have more than 1 agent.

Read more: The 6 Different Real Estate License Types

Who is Qualified to Become an Agent?

To become a property agent in Malaysia, you must first meet all the requirements. First, you must be a Malaysian citizen or a foreigner who has become a permanent resident (PR).

Second, you need to have obtained the Malaysian Certificate of Education (SPM), passing at least five subjects, of which three are credited courses. One of the credited subjects is either Commerce, Science, Accounting, or Mathematics.

Applicants who don’t hold an SPM certificate can be considered, as long as they have received a similar or higher eligibility acknowledged by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency and Public Service Department (JPA).

The Journey to Becoming a Property Agent

Before you can become an official real estate agent, you will need to study more than 10 courses and pass their corresponding exams. You will also need to train under a licensed property agency, and then pass one final oral test. In general, the process can be categorised into 4 main challenges.

1. Written Exam – Part I

Part 1 consists of six exams, and each applicant needs to pay a processing fee of RM50, plus RM50 per subject. Persons who took up property-related courses and had received related degrees are exempted from taking the written exam. To know if your degree is accredited, visit the BOVAEA website.

2. Written Exam – Part II

After you’ve passed the first part, more exams await you. Just like part I, this portion comprises six exams that must all be passed before you can apprentice under a property firm. Usually, it takes about two years of studying to pass all 12 exams in Part I & II.

3. Apprenticeship

After obtaining the required industry know-how, it’s time to acquire on-the-job experience. The next stage of getting your estate agent license is to render two years of service as a probationary agent under a bona fide property agency. You will also need to keep a comprehensive log of your work activities.

4. Final Oral Exam

After you’ve completed your two-year apprenticeship, it’s time to prepare for the Test of Professional Competence. But before taking this oral exam, it’s advised to buy a copy of the exam’s rules and guidelines at BOVAEA.

Consider the Test of Professional Competence as an interview where you need to showcase both your in-depth knowledge of the field and the experience you’ve gained from your two-year apprenticeship. If you pass, you’ll officially become a property agent with a Diploma in Estate Agency.

How Much Can You Earn as a Property Agent?

One of the top benefits of a full-fledged property agent is he or she can charge hefty commissions. Essentially, the rate depends on whether an agent closed a sale or a rental transaction.

For property sales or purchase:

1. Property agents are paid at least RM1,000 in commission.

2. They can only charge a maximum commission of 3% on the sale of buildings and land-based on the selling price.

3. For sale of chattels including plant and machinery, agents are entitled to 10 percent of the proceeds. However, please note that the above fees don’t apply to the sale of overseas properties in Malaysia, or sale of Malaysian properties in other nations.

For real estate rentals:

Property agents are paid at least 1-month worth of gross rental.

Typically, the rental commission is based on the duration of the stay. For details, please see the table below.

Essentially, agents earn more when they sell a greater number of properties. The commission for transacting expensive homes is also larger than selling low-cost and mid-scale homes, but the clientele who can afford such properties are limited.

Nonetheless, hard work will not betray you. You’ll likely close more transactions the more time and effort you put into the job. In fact, there are many rags to riches stories of property agents, and you may just become the next inspiration story for property agents.

For more guides like these, visit the PropSocial’s discussion page.

(Written by G. Zizan, 22nd October 2019)


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Good information.

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yes, rags to riches stories...

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@carmenfoong take it easy. give credit to the article writer. It is information. Just a news.

20150527 023646 1 small if I sounds not taking it easy...haha