Marcia Hultman

Cabinet Secretary

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South Dakota Real Estate Commission

Unlicensed Assistants

It is becoming an increasingly common practice to hire unlicensed assistants to perform routine tasks involved in real estate transactions. The Commission frequently receives requests for information on what unlicensed employees may or may not do. The following list, while not exhaustive, is intended to provide guidance for brokers and salespeople who hire unlicensed personal assistants, as well as for unlicensed office personnel.

Unlicensed assistants may:

  • Deliver documents and pick up keys.
  • Answer the telephone and forward calls.
  • Secure public information from courthouses, utility districts, etc.
  • Provide courier services.
  • Schedule appointments with other offices, existing clients or customers.
  • Place signs on property.
  • Type forms for approval by licensee and supervising broker.
  • Write ads for approval of licensee and supervising broker, and place classified advertising.
  • Assemble documents for closing.
  • Hand out objective, written information on a listing.

Unlicensed assistants may not:

  • Show property to prospective buyers.
  • Solicit by telephone or in person potential sellers, purchasers, tenants or landlords.
  • Answer questions on title insurance, financing or closings.
  • Host open houses for licensees or the public, or staff booths at home shows or fairs.
  • Give additional information not included in prepared written promotional material that has been distributed to the public.
  • Represent themselves as an agent for a real estate broker or the owner/seller of a property.
  • Negotiate or discuss the terms of a sale.
  • Be paid on the basis of real estate activity, such as a percentage of commission, or any amount based on listings, sales, etc.
  • Act as a go-between with a seller and buyer.
  • Answer questions concerning properties listed with the firm, except to confirm the property is listed and identify the listing broker or salesperson.
  • Solicit bidders for real estate sold at auction.