| October 05, 2011
The dust has started to settle on this year’s annual renewal period and Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA) staff are now taking the opportunity to look back and tally what was accomplished during the month of September. Some of the numbers might surprise you.
As of the start of business on September 26, with only five work days remaining in the renewal period, less than 58 per cent of individual industry professionals had been renewed. As of 11:59 p.m. on September 30, just shy of 94 per cent of individual industry professionals had been renewed. In terms of numbers that means in the final five working days of the renewal period – approximately 5,100 industry professionals had their renewals processed.
During the month of September, calls and emails to RECA’s licensing and information officers typically rise – and this year was no different. Between August 29 and October 4, RECA licensing and information officers took more than 1,500 telephone calls and responded to more than 3,700(!!!) emails.
Just as staggering as the number of calls and emails RECA received is the number of documents that arrived at RECA for processing by staff. This includes, among other things, Certified Criminal Record checks, renewal applications with “yes” answers, brokerage amendment documentation and notifications pursuant to section 40(1) of the Real Estate Act Rules. Though those items are provided throughout the year by industry professionals as the need arises, during the month of September, a greater number arrive at the RECA office for processing. RECA staff received and processed more than 1,500 such documents during the month of September.
One of the most time-consuming processes for RECA staff relates to brokerage amendments, which is why this year, brokers were encouraged to provide notification of brokerage amendments to RECA as early as possible. That said, RECA staff were processing brokerage amendments at the eleventh hour on the evening of September 30 and are pleased to report that any brokerage amendment that arrived at the RECA offices by 5 p.m. on September 30 and included all of the required documentation was processed by the renewal deadline.
We know it’s human nature to do things, especially things that require the payment of money, at the last-minute. That said, industry professionals become eligible to renew in the middle of August each year, which is a full month and a half before the renewal deadline, and still, this year, approximately one-third of industry professionals were renewed in the final five days of the month. With so many industry professionals leaving their renewal to the end of September, RECA often wonders what it could do differently to encourage more people to renew early.
Other than financial incentives, what do you think could help convince industry professionals to renew well in advance of the September 30 deadline?