A bill which enhances professionalism and training in the real estate industry easily passed the Illinois Senate on Friday and now heads to the governor’s desk.

SB 1872’s passage marked the end of months of work by Illinois REALTORS® and the state Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to craft an agreed-to bill.

The bill is a rewrite of the Real Estate Licensing Act, which by statute must be revised every decade to reflect industry changes.

“Illinois REALTORS® worked closely with IDFPR to come up with legislation which meets a shared goal of making the industry better for all,” said Ed Neaves, Illinois REALTORS® president-elect. “We’re excited about a rewrite that enhances education for agents and provides necessary consumer protections.”

The 50,000-member state association began its work on the rewrite more than a year ago. It convened member task forces to address various parts of the bill, and members’ suggestions were incorporated into the final legislation.

The bill was presented in the Senate as agreed-to legislation. The House overwhelmingly passed the bill last week.

Highlights of the bill include:

  • Enhancement of pre- and post-licensing requirements; reduction in pre-license hours from 90 to 75 hours and overhauls post-license education from the current 30 hours to a 45-hour program that targets essential skill-building;
  • Enhances and more clearly specifies managing broker supervisory responsibilities, especially for new licensees;
  • Reduces the minimum age for obtaining a license from 21 to 18;
  • Defines and recognizes real estate brokerage “teams” and addresses the use of team names in advertising;
  • Clarifies and streamlines consumer access to the Real Estate Recovery Fund and addresses and clarifies other disciplinary provisions.

“This industry works best when regulators and practitioners work together,” Neaves said. “This bill is an example of how two entities can collaborate to improve legislation, while keeping firmly in mind that the end result must be a marketplace that is fair and professional for all.”