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Alberta Online Encyclopedia


In order to practice the real estate profession in Canada, you must be a licenced do so. Real estate associates in Canada are licenced by different bodies depending on the province. In Alberta, the Real Estate Council of Alberta is the licencing body for real estate associates, mortgage brokers, and real estate appraisers.

The Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA) is a non-governmental agency established in 1996 to regulate the real estate profession. RECA operates under the Alberta’s Real Estate Act to enforce professional standards of conduct, promote the integrity of the industry, provide services to consumers and professionals, and to protect against fraud. The ultimate aim of RECA is to protect consumers and promote consumer confidence in the real estate industry.

In order to become a licenced real estate associate in Alberta, you must apply for a licence through the Real Estate Council of Alberta within one year of completing the Real Estate Associates Program (REAP) as offered by the Alberta Real Estate Association. There are other prerequisites to obtaining a licence. Candidates must be 18 years of age or over and have the equivalent of a Canadian high school diploma, as well as English fluency. Candidates must also be able to pass a criminal record check. After completing the REAP program, the candidate must complete a courses on “Understanding Designated Agency and Transaction Brokerage,” and before they can apply for a licence, they must pass a provincial qualifying exam and obtain employment at a brokerage. Following this, the broker will make the formal licencing application to RECA.

In addition to licencing real estate associates, RECA licences mortgage brokers and real estate appraisers. The licencing standards are all similar, with different educational requirements. Real estate brokers, however, are required to have at least two years of industry experience, and pass the broker’s exam.

Re-licencing education programs exist for those who wish to apply for a licence and have already had one. RECA can also pull a licence either temporarily or permanently to discipline a real estate professional for unethical or illegal practices.

Once a real estate associate is licensed, they cannot be legally called a REALTOR® unless he or she is a member of the Canadian Real Estate Association. This is done by applying to the local real estate board for membership, which, in Edmonton is the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton. Members of this association are automatically members of the Alberta Real Estate Association and the Canadian Real Estate Association, so they can call themselves REALTORS®.

To ensure that you are dealing with a licenced real estate professional, please use the licence searching service offered by the Real Estate Council of Alberta here.


Alberta Real Estate Association. “General Information on Becoming a REALTOR®.” http://www.abrea.ab.ca/becomeREALTOR/general.htm

Canadian Real Estate Association. “REALTOR® Services.” Retrieved February 18, 2009 from http://www.crea.ca/public/use_a_realtor/use_a_realtor.htm

Real Estate Council of Alberta. “About RECA.” Retrieved February 18, 2009 from http://www.reca.ca/about_reca/reca_overview.htm

Real Estate Council of Alberta. “Licences and Forms.” Retrieved February 18, 2009 from http://www.reca.ca/licences_forms/default.htm

REALTORS® Association of Edmonton. “Becoming a Member of the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton.” Retrieved February 18, 2009 from


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