How to become a Property Agent in Singapore

Become a Property Agent

Real estate industry can be a lucrative industry to be in, if you are up for it. There are many successful real estate salesperson, as well as those who decided that it is not a career for them.

A lot of times, we only hear of the success stories and seldom hear of the hardship and difficulties property agents go through.

I do not mean to put a negative light on our business but I just want to highlight a point that this business is not easy and there is a lot of hard work and sweat that goes into.

If you are focused and you get the right help from the right mentor, you will go far and beyond your expectations. But a lot of the hard work will have to come from you. Do not enter this industry thinking you can rely on others. Everything is done by you and from you. You are no longer an employee but your own boss. Own time, own target.

If you are up for it, read on to find out what you need to do for you to be a licensed real estate salesperson. If you want to ask more questions and have better understanding about the industry, about the business, I can be reached via email, WhatsApp, and our contact us page. Just click on the link and I will get in touch.

There are four steps to get through before you can be licensed and start your new career. You need to fulfill certain criteria, then enrol yourself into a RES Course, take the exams and once passed, join an estate Agency.

I describe the details below. Let’s get started.

Pre-requisite

Educational Qualification

  • You must have a minimum of 4 GCE ‘O’ Level passes or equivalent.
  • If you do not have the minimum GCE passes, you may submit a Level 5 and above on Workplace Literacy and Numeracy (WPLN) assessment in the following 5 components (Reading, Listening, Speaking, Writing, and Numeracy). Contact us for more information on WPLN.
  • If you have overseas and other qualifications, you will need to submit your certificates for further assessment via Approved Course Providers.
  • Possess a Pass in the Real Estate Salesperson exam or Equivalent
  • Qualifications Equivalent to RES examination
  • If you have a certain paper qualification that is recognised by CEA, you can get exemption from taking the RES exams. Check out the list of qualification on CEA website here.

Other Criteria

Residency Status

  • You must be a Singapore Citizen or a Singapore Permanent Resident (SPR) for over 10 years. If you are a SPR with less than 10 years, you will be required to submit a Certificate of No Criminal Conviction or proof of stay in Singapore for more than 10 years.
  • If you are a foreigner, you must approach Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) for further assessment. Contact us for further information.

Age

  • You must be at least 21 years old

Business owner

  • You must NOT hold a moneylender’s license and not be an employee, director or partner of a licensed moneylender.
  • You must not be an existing Key Executive Officer (KEO) of another licensed estate agent.

Fit and Proper criteria under the Estate Agents Act

  • No conviction involving dishonesty, fraud, etc. For more details, kindly to refer to www.cea.gov.sg 


Enrol in RES Course

If you meet the criteria stated above and any other conditions as required by CEA, you are now ready to take to the first step.

The first step is to enrol in a CEA approved course provider. There are many choices in the market for you to choose from. 

You want to choose one with a reputable RES course trainer, experienced and knowledgeable and have been a trainer for many years. This is important because the course delivery and the knowledge shared is valuable and it can only help you pass the exam successfully.

Passing rates over the years have been getting tougher and tougher as CEA is pushing the standards of real estate agents to be higher. Hence, getting the right training from the right trainer is important.

There are also some subsidies available that you can apply for enjoy some discounts on the RES course.

If you are a NTUC Union member, you could claim 50% of their unfunded course fee. And, there is the Skill Future SG where you can utilise up to $500 for the course fee. All these you can get the details from your course provider when you apply to enrol for their course. Final discounts and subsidy is subject to final approval from relevant organisations.

You can check out the Life Mastery Academy for details about their RES course. You can also find a list of CEA approved course providers here. 

Take CEA Exams

After you have enrol in the RES Course, and now you are ready to take the RES exams. You will have to register to the RES exams on your own. You can always ask for assistance from the course providers for the registration.

You must be aware of the following to have an idea of the RES exams, format, fees and so on. The details are as follows:

Exam Syllabus

There’s a long list syllabus on what is covered in Paper 1 and Paper 2. You can check the exam syllabus from CEA website here. 

Exam Schedule

The RES exams are held three (3) times a year, usually in month of February, June and October over a weekend.

Exam Fees

There are two papers each RES candidates need to pass. Paper 1 and Paper 2.

The fees are as follows:

The Exam Fees

Paper 1 & Paper 2
SGD 417.30 (inclusive of GST)

Re-takers (Single Paper)
SGD 235.40 (inclusive of GST)

Exam Format

Each paper consist of 

Each paper consists of

Section A: 50 multiple choice questions (MCQs) - 1 mark each
Section B: 15 MCQs with reference to one or two case studies - 2 marks each
Section C: 10 short answer questions (SAQs) - 2 makes each

Exam Results

The exam results will be sent by the administrator via email address, typically about 4 to 6 weeks after the exam is held.

You have 2 years to complete and pass the RES exams (Paper 1 & 2) from the date of issuance of the RES course completion certificate. Failing which, you will have to start afresh.

Appeals for review must be submitted to the appointed examination administrator

Join an Estate Agency

After you have successfully passed the CEA exams, there is one more step you need to do before you can start your practice as a licensed real estate salesperson.

This is a quick overview of the joining process. First, you will need to join an estate agency. But before you can join the agency, you will need to submit your application via this estate agency you have selected. The recruiter or the team manager will hand over to you a set of application form and the agreement contract. 

You will need to sign the agreement and make the necessary payments.

Please bring along with you the important documents such as your Identity Card, your CEA exam results or the CEA Certificate, your education certificates and so on. All these will be submitted together to CEA by the estate agency.

Within a day after the application is submitted by the estate agency, CEA will send you an email with instructions.

You will need to complete the application and upload the documents as per instruction given.  You have 10 days to submit. And, thereafter, the Estate agency will submit the application to CEA.

Once the application is received by CEA, CEA will take another 4 to 6 weeks to approve the application upon receiving the application.

Upon approval, CEA will send a notification to both the estate agency and you. Once CEA notifies the estate agency, they will prepare the CEA card with the estate agency logo on it. And, you can start your business as a real estate salesperson.

Selecting an agency to join

There are a couple of things you can do before to finally decide which estate agency and which team manager you would want to partner with. These two decisions are very important to your success as a real estate salesperson.

The first consideration should be a large organisation. Why is this so? The larger the organisation, the better the facilities, technical infrastructure and agent support you will get.

They will have bigger budgets to ensure the agents receives the best tools and support to conduct their real estate business on a daily basis.

Small, Essential, Focus Team

Working with a good mentor and team manager is the next important factor to consider. More so if you are a brand new agent, first time getting into the business. You want to start learning the right approach, right attitude and right skill set. You want to learn to be an ethical agent, professional and knowledgeable.

You need to be looking at beyond the big-team mindset. PropNex as a company has 8500 plus agents but within the big organisation, there are many smaller teams with extremely good team managers that can help you grow your business to the next level.

You want to find a team that is able to give you the attention and guidance so you can quickly have a shortened learning curve. This is so you can start getting your income as soon as possible.

Know that working in a large organisation with a small and lean team brings your better result. It is the smaller team in a large organisation that get things done with speed and results. With a big organisation, you can leverage on the infrastructure. Working with a small team in a large organisation gets you the attention and better one-to-one training. 

Recruitment talk

For a start, you can start looking around for recruitment talks organised by the various estate agencies and team managers.

These days, you can attend them from the comfort of your home. Due to the circuit breaker, many recruitment sessions have been conducted online.

You can register with us here by sending your contact details here. We will inform you of any recruitment talks when there is one.

Talk to Team Leaders/Managers

You can also talk to the team managers direct. Give them a call and set the appointment. Meeting these days can also be done via online. But, it is better if you can have a face-to-face meeting and have the discussion. 

Personal meeting is better as you are able to get to know and understand the person you will be partnering with in your new business.

Here, I would like to highlight one important point. Many new agents getting into the real estate industry always have a different perspective and concept.

When you receive your license as a professional real estate salesperson, you ARE now essentially a business owner. You are the entrepreneur. You call the shots.

When you join a team, you are actually not reporting to the manager but your are a PARTNER in the business. You do what it takes to ensure you run a successful business.

The team manager is your mentor to guide you in the right direction and to show you the right practices. The rest is you have to take it upon yourself to work harder and achieve the goals you set for yourself.

Always keep this in mind and you will be so far ahead from the others.

Which Property Agency you should you join in Singapore?

I have created a video on my YouTube channel - Ming Property where I talk about which estate agency a licensed real estate salesperson should join. Click to watch the following video. Let me know what you think in the comments after that. Click "Like" and subscribe to our channel to receive updates related to our real estate industry.

Submit registration

Once you have identified the estate agency and the team manager you want to partner with, bring the necessary documents mentioned above, sign the agreement and make the payments for all the fees.

The process is also mentioned above and it will take about 4 to 6 weeks to get the approval done by CEA.

The following are the registration fees

Registration Fee

  • Application Fee = $53.50 with GST
  • Registration Fee = $230 (before June 30) without GST
  • Registration Fee = $115 (after June 30) without GST
  • New Real Estate Salesperson

    You are now ready to be a New Real Estate Salesperson.

    Once you have received the approval from CEA, congratulations! You can now start your new business as a real estate professional.

    Do you need to clarify any doubts you may have? Do you have any unanswered questions? We can have a 30-minute discussion, longer if necessary. Make an appointment with me to discuss your career as a real estate salesperson.

    If you would like to attend any of our recruitment talk in the near future, drop me a message via the contact us page.

    I look forward to hear from you soon.

    Francis Lim
    “Your Success, Our Priority”

    Ming Property francis and ming