Q: What license is required to run a property management company in Puerto Rico?

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Q: What license is required to run a property management company in Puerto Rico?

Q: What license is required to run a property management company in Puerto Rico?

I am a real estate agent in Kentucky. I would like to move to Puerto Rico and run a vacation property management company. What license requirement do I need to meet?

San Juan– Louisville, Kentucky

answer-icon-masterWell, the first thing you should know is how to communicate effectively in Spanish. Even if you are renting mostly to Americans and Canadians and the odd European, Spanish is essential to conducting business in Puerto Rico. And, of course, you will enjoy the beautiful island much more if you are fluent or near-fluent in Spanish and embrace the community.

Want to Find a Local Property Manager?

If you don’t already know Spanish, I would suggest learning the language, as most of Puerto Rico’s official functions, including the administrative services and websites at the Puerto Rico Department of State (Departmento de Estado), are in Spanish.

To get your license to be a real estate broker (corridor de bienes raices), you’ll have to deal with a junta. That is, the Junta de Corredores, Vendedores y Empresasde Bienes Raíces.

Now, on to your specific question: What licenses do you need? To manage properties, you’ll likely need a broker’s license. Here’s the relevant section of Puerto Rican Law:

Art. 2 Definiciones. (20 LPRA sec. 3025)

Corredor de bienes raíces. Significará la persona natural que, poseyendo una licencia para ejercer la profesión de corredor de bienes raíces expedida por la Junta, actúe como intermediario, mediante pago o promesa de pago de cualquier compensación mutua y previamente convenida, entre las partes que acuerden llevar a cabo en Puerto Rico una transacción de compraventa, promesa de venta, opción de compra o venta, permuta, arrendamiento, subasta, administración de propiedades, o en el ofrecimiento, promoción o negociación de los términos de una venta, opción de compraventa, promesa de venta, alquiler, administración, permuta de bienes raíces localizados en o fuera de Puerto Rico. Disponiéndose, sin embargo, que no se considerará como ejercer la profesión de corredor de bienes raíces para propósitos de esta ley, cualquier tipo de transacción relacionada con la compra, venta, alquiler, permuta, subasta o administración de un bien inmueble en la que él sea el propietario de dicho bien inmueble y actúe en beneficio propio y no como intermediario entre dos clientes.  

Art. 10 Requisitos para obtener la licencia de corredor de bienes raíces. (20 LPRA sec. 3033)

Toda persona natural que aspire a ejercer la profesión de corredor de bienes raíces en Puerto Rico deberá cumplir con los siguientes requisitos:  

(a) Radicar ante la Junta una solicitud debidamente juramentada en el formulario que a esos efectos dicha Junta provea.  

(b) Presentar un certificado de antecedentes penales otorgado por la Policía de Puerto Rico indicando que durante los cinco (5) años previos a dicha solicitud, no ha sido convicto de delito grave o delito menos grave que implique depravación moral; Disponiéndose, que este requisito puede cumplirse en cualquier momento antes de que la Junta expida la licencia.  

(c) Ser mayor de dieciocho (18) años.  

(d) Ser graduado de escuela superior o su equivalente.  

(e) Disponiéndose, que a partir del 1ro. de julio de 1995, deberá haber aprobado un mínimo de sesenta (60) créditos universitarios en instituciones acreditadas o reconocidas por el Consejo de Educación Superior. Los corredores de bienes raíces que poseen licencia a la fecha de aprobación de esta ley no tendrán que cumplir con este requisito.  

(f) Haber aprobado el examen de corredor de bienes raíces que ofrezca la Junta.  

(g) Cumplir con los requisitos de educación para licencia de bienes raíces establecidos en la [20 LPRA sec. 3038] de esta ley.

(h) Pagar la cantidad de doscientos (200) dólares en comprobante de Rentas Internas.  

(i) Presentar una certificación de la institución bancaria donde está la cuenta de Depósito de Plica o especial que usará en sus gestiones como corredor.  

I’m not attempting to translate here. The Google translation tool is available to those who need it, but I cannot vouch for its accuracy, so I will not attempt to do more than cut and paste the relevant sections of the law as written. Use an online translation tool at your own risk. Otherwise, I recommend you engage the services of an attorney licensed in Puerto Rico to help you with the law.

Contacts

Need to contact the Puerto Rican government agency in charge of real estate licensing and regulation? Here’s your contact information: Sra. María Díaz or Sr. Luis Flores 787-722-2122, Ext. 226, 229 and 234.

I see no indication on their website that they conduct any business in English, so be prepared to converse in Spanish.

However, Puerto Rico Board of Brokers, Salespersons and Real Estate Business does publish this resource for real estate licensing candidates in English, which you may find helpful (the link was Google-translated into English from Spanish, but you can switch back to the original Spanish by clicking “original” in the upper right hand corner).

You’ll need to take the real estate agent and/or broker’s exam. Each exam is $107. The source linked above provides all the locations and administrative requirements for taking the exams. For more information on the exams themselves, call 1-888-773-9266. 

I suggest you also contact and consider joining the Vacation Rental Managers’ Association (VRMA), as well as the Puerto Rico Hotel and Tourism Association. These organizations can give you further guidance, as well as Small Business Administration in Puerto Rico and the National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce.

Compensation

According to data compiled by Sokanu.com, the median salary/compensation for a property manager in Puerto Rico is $35,940.

The lowest-paid 10 percent earn about $25,270 per year, while the 25th percentile earns $64,850. The highest-paid 10 percent earn $98,190 and up. There is good news if you aren’t at the top of the earnings rankings: Puerto Rico is an affordable place to live, with a 2013 ACCRA Cost of Living Index of 79 (with 100 set as the national average). 

Author Bio
Writing about personal finance and investments since 1999, started as a reporter with Mutual Funds Magazine and served as editor of Investors’ Digest. He now publishes feature articles in many publications including Annuity Selling Guide, Bankrate.com, and more.
Author Bio for Jason Van Steenwyk

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