Some Florida Real Estate Schools Give Private Customer Information To Brokers

By |June 5th, 2023|

As a school owner, I frequently get requests from brokers to send them a list of my students and their contact information.  I usually ask if they are willing to give out their customers’ information to random people.  Of course, they think that’s a preposterous proposition.  But that’s exactly what they are asking me to do.

I have never given out students’ information without their permission.  That’s how I want to be treated as a customer, so that’s what I give to my customers.

Unfortunately, not all school owners think like that.  Because I’m a broker, I often receive ads from other school that are my competitors.  A new school opened recently and selling points to brokers is that if you refer customers to us, we will send you the names and contact information for all of our customers.  In other words, they are using your information as a bargaining tool to get brokers to recommend their school.  Wow!

Now frequently, I have a student say something like, “I want to work with Keller Williams.  Do you know anyone there?”

I am happy to say, “My student Brittany works there.  She has done well there.  Can I give her your information and have her call you?”

In that case, I would be glad to facilitate the introduction with permission from the customer.

Our commitment to our customers is that we will not be the reason you will get additional spam emails, spam texts, or another other advertisements.  You will get enough of that without our encouraging it.  When you register for real estate school, ask the school if they ever give away, trade, or sell your information to brokers.


Please note that neither Karen Climer nor Demetree School of Real Estate has any connection to Climer School of Real Estate, Gold Coast Schools or Colibri.  My father, Ron Climer, started Climer School of Real Estate.  He sold it in 2014.  It has since been sold to a large corporation.

Which Florida Real Estate Schools Are Not Teaching Florida Material?

By |May 18th, 2023|

Many Florida schools don’t know what is happening in Florida.  How can you tell?  Like any scam, there are many red flags.  Some of those red flags are…

  1. The “teacher” on the video doesn’t have a Florida real estate instructor license. If they are teaching you how to pass a Florida exam and they haven’t passed that exam themselves, they are a paid actor.  If you want to learn how to act, watch these videos.  If you want to pass the real estate exam, be sure the person has a Florida real estate license.  You can look up any Florida licensee here.
  2. Money-back guarantees. If the school offers a money-back guarantee or a no-pass, no-pay policy, they are not familiar with Florida laws.  Florida schools are not allowed to offer money-back guarantees based on passing.  One of these curriculum providers sent me sample material to see if I wanted to use it.  I looked at the material.  Several of the “Florida” practice questions were incorrect.  I later found out, it was correct information for Tennessee law, but not Florida.  Obviously, I don’t use that material in my classes.
  3. Offering too many states. The phrase “jack of all trades but master of none” comes to mind.  If you have to choose your state on their website, they are likely not familiar with how Florida works.  For example, the Florida test is application based, which means you have to be able to apply the knowledge.  That is not true in many states.  Some of the schools that cover all 50 states offer practice questions that are much easier than our Florida real estate exam.  You will feel confident going into the exam because you did well on the easy practice questions, but you will be dumbfounded when you see how difficult the Florida real estate exam is.
  4. The school does not have a physical Florida address. There are many schools that operate primarily in the cloud.  That works for some people.  However, Florida rule requires that these schools have a physical address and phone number that students can access.  If they don’t have that, they don’t know Florida law.  If their address is not in Florida, they likely know more about their home state than Florida.

None of these are actually indicators that a school is a rip-off or doesn’t understand Florida law.  They are just indicators that it might be.  Much like a bunch of typos in an email does not guarantee that it is a scam.  It’s just one of the indicators.  But just like those emails, the best thing to do is to err on the side of caution.

Demetree School of Real Estate is a Florida-based school.  In fact, we are home grown.  If you are trying to get a Florida real estate license, check out our real estate prelicensing class schedule.

Please note that neither I nor anyone in the Climer family has any relation to Climer School of Real Estate.  My father, Ron Climer, sold the school in 2014.  It has since been sold to a large corporate conglomerate based in Minnesota.  If you are looking for Karen Climer, you will find me at Demetree School of Real Estate in Orlando, Florida.

What Is A Competing Broker?

By |April 18th, 2023|

Let’s say you work for Broker Bob Realty.  The office consists of Bob and several real estate agents.  In a non-competing brokerage, Bob does not take listings nor work directly with buyers.  His primary role is to run the office and work with his agents to help them succeed.  In a competing brokerage office, Bob is actively engaged in working with buyers and sellers.  In other words, Bob is competing with his own agents for business.  This is what is referred to as a competing brokerage.

There are pros and cons for both ways, but I’m going to tell you way I choose to work for a non-competing brokerage.

In a non-competing brokerage, the broker has time to manage the office.  In a competitive brokerage, Broker Bob is spending half is time getting listings and working with buyers.  He spends the other half of his time running the office.  In other words, he has two part-time jobs rather than one full-time job.  I don’t know about you, but if I’m working full-time, I want a boss who is available full-time.

When everything is running smoothly, you can get by with a part-time broker.  If every deal went perfectly – the buyer liked the first house and the offer was accepted, the home inspection was perfect, the lending process was smooth, and there were zero issues at closing – then real estate would be a part-time job.  But of course, every deal isn’t perfect.  In fact, no deal is perfect.  It’s the same with running a brokerage.  If everything were perfect, then all the broker would have to do is sit on the couch and watch the money roll in.  That is so unrealistic that is doesn’t even happen on TV.  In real life, you have people.  People – whether it’s buyers, sellers, agents, cooperating agents, mortgage brokers, title companies, or anyone else – make things more complicated.  That’s why being a broker isn’t a part-time job.

Another reason I don’t want to work for a competing brokerage is that I don’t want my broker to compete with me, I want him to support me.  Your broker cannot be on your team and be your competitor at the same time.  That is not possible.  You can’t play on both sides of the tennis match.  If Broker Bob is competing with me, then when someone calls the office looking for an agent, is he going to refer that customer to me?  Or is he going to take the customer himself?  Naturally, it’s in his best interest to take it for himself.  But in a non-competing brokerage, he will say, “I’m going to refer you to one of our best agents.  Karen is going to help you get your house sold.”  Will you get a lot of leads that way?  Probably not, but it depends on the office.  Different offices have different rules about floor time, desk duty, in-house leads, etc.  But one thing I know for certain, it is cleaner when the broker is not distributing those leads to himself.

There is plenty of competition in real estate.  In fact, you are competing with other agents in your office.  You don’t need to also compete with your broker as well.

Or consider this … I’m representing the buyer in a transaction and my broker is representing the seller.  Florida is a transaction broker state so this is legal, but what if something goes wrong and I need my broker’s help.  I have to ask the agent (my broker) who represents the other side of the transaction for advice?  That doesn’t sit well with me.

But don’t you want a broker who has their ear to the ground?  Someone who is out in the field and knows what’s going on out there?  It’s a myth that the broker needs to be selling to have a grasp of the market.  Do you think the manager of a restaurant is unfamiliar with the restaurant business just because she isn’t actually waiting on tables or cooking food in the back?  Of course not.  She is very in tune with the restaurant business.  She talks to customers.  She talks to vendors.  She talks to employees.  A good manager talks to everyone.

It’s the same with a real estate broker.  Sure, your broker might not be calling foreclosures every day, but I bet he talks to buyers and seller.  He talks to other brokers and agents.  He talks to mortgage brokers, inspectors, title agents, and all the other people who make a real estate deal happen.  He is keenly aware of the market.  Just like the restaurant manager is involved in a different way than the waiters and cooks, a broker is a different job from sales agent.

Right now, I have my license with Keller Williams at the Parks in Orlando, Florida, and I love it.  Keller Williams is a non-competing broker.  If you are interested in working for Keller Williams, please give me a call and I’d be happy to talk to you.  If you are interested in getting a Florida real estate license, I teach classes at Demetree School of Real Estate.  Give me a call and I can help you get your Florida real estate license.