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With real estate owned (REO) properties numbering in the millions, agents vying for new business opportunities will find an abounding REO market. With the right insurances in place, brokers will be able to both support their agents’ REO business while amassing new and successful real estate transactions throughout the year. With every new real estate niche, however, education is paramount to prosperity.

To address this need for advanced REO training, The Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC) teamed up with Ed Bugos, ABR®, BPOR, SFR®, a knowledgeable REO business specialist and instructor, to bring real estate professionals a comprehensive course on the expectations of REO business, titled REO Properties: Responsibilities, Education, and Opportunities for Real Estate Professionals.

Bugos offers the following tips to help answer your questions and assist you in creating an REO-specific plan for your brokerage.

What is a common misunderstanding about REO business?

A common misunderstanding is that a general real estate transaction business model can support yearly REO business. The truth is your brokerage could incur thousands of dollars in unexpected expenses come the end of the year without having the back-end transactional framework in place to support REOs.

What value can brokers gain by learning about REOs?

When an agent completes his/her first REO, the broker and brokerage must be prepared to handle any transactional issues that may occur. Plus, the more education brokers and agents receive, the smoother the business will be.

What future do you see in the REO market?

My best educated guess is that after the presidential election year, the REO market will get stronger and longer through 2015 and 2016. It looks to me like the market is readying for another REO flood, but, we’ll have to wait and see.

You’ve taught several REO Properties courses so far. How has the response been?

It’s exceeded my expectations. There is so much excitement from my end to teach and the students’ end to learn. Here is a true testament to this course. A student of mine had already completed an REO, but explained that the entire transaction process was complicated and extremely stressful. As I went through the policies and procedures associated with REO transactions, I kept hearing “Ah-ha!” It was a welcoming confirmation that a piece of important information had, until that moment, been a mystery to her and, subsequently, her broker.

What advice would you offer to brokers?

Be trainers within your company. Understand what your agents are doing or what they are up against and have a plan in place to back their business. If you know your agents are exploring different real estate opportunities, encourage them and become the source of knowledge.

Covering a range of topics, the REO Properties: Responsibilities, Education, and Opportunities for Real Estate Professionals course counts as an elective credit toward earning the Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation.

Students interested in signing up for the new course can visit to find a course in their area or log onto to learn more.

A wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), The Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC) is the world’s largest association of real estate professionals focusing specifically on representing the real estate buyer. With more than 30,000 active members, REBAC awards the Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation to REALTORS® who work directly with buyer-clients. To learn more visit