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DRE Sponsor No. 0473 & S0110
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Hire recruits as finders today, licensees tomorrow

Welcome to the Finder Recruitment Page, by firsttuesday

Recruits today join teams as finders

Those with a desire to enter the real estate profession — aspiring agents — do not need to be licensed by the DRE so long as their conduct with members of the public remains limited to that of a finder. Finders are not controlled by DRE law and regulations — rather, finders are control by California law. Thus, finders are not real estate licensees — they are unlicensed agents-in-training.

As part of a strategy for generating business, an unlicensed finder on behalf of a broker or agent, may:
  • be recruited and immediately hired under a written contract of employment [See RPI Form 115];
  • begin work locating and introducing transaction participants who need real estate services to licensees at the brokerage office, functioning as a "runner" or "gopher" while bonding with the brokerage office as part of the team;
  • study and train to be licensed by enrolling in the three DRE-approved statutory pre-licensing courses needed to qualify for the salesperson exam while getting practical experience;
  • pass the state exam once it is made available in sufficient volume by the DRE; and
  • restructure their employment with the brokerage office on becoming a DRE licensed salesperson, taking on the rather demanding fiduciary duties a licensee owes to clients. [See RPI Form 505 and 506]

The formula is deceptively simple: hire — work — study — license — promote

Finder referrals and limitations

A finder in California may:
  • find and introduce parties;
  • solicit parties for referral to others [Tyrone v. Kelley (1973) 9 C3d 1]; and
  • be employed by principals or brokers.
However, a finder may not:
  • take part in any negotiations [Bus & P C ยง10131(a)];
  • discuss the price;
  • discuss the property; or
  • discuss the terms or conditions of the transaction. [Spielberg v. Granz (1960) 185 CA2d 283]

Finder's Fee Agreement to Document the Employment

The Finder's Fee Agreement published continuously since 1978 by RPI is used by a broker, broker-associate or agent when they employ an individual to locate, solicit and refer or identify persons who need the services of the broker, to document the terms of the employment. [See RPI Form 115]
The Finder's Fee Agreement provides for:
  • the identity of the prospective client;
  • a description of the real estate involved, if applicable;
  • the compensation due the finder; and
  • the conditions under which the referral fee is earned by the finder. [See RPI Form 115]


Upgrade your finders to sales agents with firsttuesday

The end goal of hiring an aspiring agent as a finder is to eventually employ them permanently as a DRE licensee. When licensed, they join the team as a fully functional licensee able to carry out disclosures and negotiations on behalf of the broker and their clients.

Brokers interested in employing an aspiring agent can hire the individual immediately as a finder and start them producing income for the finder and the broker. Concurrent with being hired as a finder, the prospective agent enrolls in the DRE-mandated pre-licensing coursework with firsttuesday and begins their studies.

Once the finder passes the state exam with a 70% or greater and processes the appropriate DRE paperwork, they are issued a salesperson license.

The finder-turned-licensee and broker enter into a different employment agreement reserved for licensees which covers the material aspects of the employment. Realty Publications, Inc. (RPI) publishes two employment agreements used by a broker employing a licensee to perform agency duties on the broker's behalf. These employment agreements are:

  • Sales Agent and Broker-Associate Employee Agreement [See RPI Form 505]; and
  • Independent Contractor Employment Agreement — For Sales Agents and Broker-Associates. [See RPI Form 506]


Get your finder recruits started on the best DRE-pre-licensing coursework today.

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