Real Estate Agencies/Agents
Buying or selling a home may be one of the biggest financial decisions you will ever make, so if you decide to use a real estate agent for the purchase or sale of your property, choose wisely. The California Department of Real Estate (DRE) is the state agency that licenses real estate brokers and salespersons. The Bureau also investigates complaints and disciplines practitioners who violate the law. The DRE website provides useful information for home buyers, borrowers, and mortgage loan professionals and offers a helpful online booklet titled Finding the Right Real Estate Agent. The California Department of Business Oversight also offers consumer guides on home ownership and useful information about mortgage loan services.
To Verify License Status or for Questions:
You can verify whether a real estate broker or salesperson is licensed or has been subject to any disciplinary action by visiting DRE's Public License Information webpage or by calling the Bureau’s Public Information Line at (877) 373-4542.
Complaints against Real Estate Agents or Companies
If you have a complaint against a licensed real estate agent or business, visit DRE’s website for details on How To File A Complaint, or call the DRE Public Information Line at (877) 373-4542. The DRE administers a victim's fund, known as the Consumer Recovery Account, that enables consumers to recover monetary compensation when they have been defrauded or had their funds misused by a real estate licensee. Visit DRE’s Consumer Recovery Account webpage for more information.
The California Department of Business Oversight licenses and regulates a variety of financial services including mortgage loan brokers and escrow agents. Visit its webpage for information about mortgage-related issues and how to file a complaint against mortgage brokers or other licensees.
If you suspect criminal activity by a real estate agent, such as fraud, theft or embezzlement, you should also notify the consumer protection division of your local district attorney’s office. You may also file a complaint online with the Attorney General’s office by visiting https://oag.ca.gov/contact/consumer-complaint-against-business-or-company