Obtaining a Real Estate License in Michigan

A large and populous state, Michigan offers professionals in the real estate industry a very marketable and successful career opportunity. People interested in becoming a realtor in Michigan might wonder how to get a real estate license. This article addresses basics such as educational requirements, eligibility and other general information on obtaining a license to sell real estate in Michigan. Under the larger governing body of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, the Michigan Real Estate Department oversees the rules and regulations of the real estate profession in this state. The following guide offers useful information for anyone seeking to find out how to get a real estate license in Michigan.

Basic Prerequisites

The state of Michigan regulates the standards to which all applicants must adhere in order to submit an application for a real estate license. In general, applicants for a Michigan real estate license must:

  • Be 18 or older
  • Complete 40 hours of approved prelicensure coursework
  • Obtain broker endorsement
  • Pay the $88 new license fee
  • Submit an application
  • Pass the licensing exam

Real estate agents in Michigan must be endorsed by a licensed broker. They do not need an official endorsement at the time of application, but a broker must confirm sponsorship of a real estate salesperson before an applicant will be given an official license. 

There is a one year limitation on submitting a completed application. Applicants should also note that the $88 fee is subject to change in November 2013 and subsequent years as outlined by a schedule on the department’s website.

In the event that an applicant has a criminal record or discloses mandatory criminal information, additional requirements must be met as outlined by the department’s guidelines. Those applicants should carefully read the application procedures to ensure that they adhere to these additional requirements.

Training & Education

The Michigan Department of Real Estate requires candidates to complete 40 hours of prelicensure coursework from an approved school. The state website offers a search feature for licensees to obtain the required prelicensure coursework. Candidates must apply for a real estate salesperson license within 36 months of completing the required prelicensure coursework.

Prior to applying to take the test, real estate applicants must first receive authorization by the real estate department once they have submitted their official applications. PSI, Inc. administers the licensing exam for Michigan applicants. Detailed information such as fees, testing requirements and registration procedures can be found on the testing service’s website. 

A Michigan state real estate license must be renewed according to a three-year cycle, during which time realtors must complete 18 hours of continuing education. Applicants should note the date they receive their licenses, as this date determines where they fall on the three-year renewal cycles.

Additional Information

Michigan does not grant reciprocal licenses to real estate salespersons. Nonresident realtors wishing to practice real estate in Michigan should contact the Michigan Real Estate Department to find out if waivers on educational requirements are available. Otherwise, the same application procedure applies to nonresidents as it applies to Michigan residents.

The Michigan Real Estate Department regulates the licensing and application requirements for real estate professionals in the state. On a national and international level, however, other associations exist to maintain standardized practices and codes of ethics among real estate professionals. Two prominent organizations include the National Association of Realtors and the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO). Members of these associations work to regulate worldwide realtor ethics and business practices to ensure widespread cooperation between realty commissions.

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