Obtaining a Real Estate License in Minnesota


With its extensive lakes and other natural resources, Minnesota offers residents and visitors excellent outdoor opportunities. For real estate professionals in populous and busy Minnesota, business can potentially be booming. Those wondering how to get a real estate license might not know where to begin. After all, each state sets forth specific guidelines for the practice of real estate. Unlike most states, Minnesota does not have a separate real estate commission. Instead, the Minnesota Department of Commerce regulates the application and licensing process for realtors in the state. The following guide offers information regarding the application process, education requirements and other general facts regarding real estate salesperson licenses in Minnesota.

Basic Prerequisites

The Minnesota Department of Commerce requires individuals applying for a real estate license to meet certain prerequisites. All applicants for a real estate salesperson license in Minnesota must:

  • Be 18 years or older
  • Complete the three-course module (30 hours total) of prelicensure coursework
  • Pay the $135 (plus vendor processing fee) for a new salesperson license
  • Submit an application on PULSE
  • Pass the licensing exam

Applications must be submitted online using Minnesota’s “PULSE Portal” system. This system also provides useful links for testing and other frequently asked questions regarding the Minnesota real estate licensing process. Within one year of becoming licensed, realtors must submit endorsement from their employing broker.

Training & Education

In lieu of a set hour requirement, the Minnesota Department of Commerce requires real estate applicants to complete three specific courses on real estate laws and practices prior to becoming licensed. The first of these courses must be complete before an applicant takes the licensing exam, while the remaining two can be completed at any time before becoming licensed. 

PULSE Portal, which handles the online application process for applicants, also administers the licensing exam electronically. Detailed information, such as testing locations and scoring regulations, can be found on the company’s website linked above. PULSE also contains a list of approved schools that offer the required prelicensure courses for Minnesota applicants.

A Minnesota real estate license expires every two years on June 30th and requires 30 hours of continuing education for the first licensing period with 24 hours thereafter.

Additional Information

The state of Minnesota recognizes the following states for reciprocal licenses: Colorado, Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Realtors in these states must submit a certificate showing that they are actively licensed in their state in order to be granted a reciprocal license. Realtors from Wisconsin must additionally complete Minnesota specific educational requirements as outlined on the website. For all other states, additional educational and exam requirements must be met.

Minnesota also issues licenses for other real estate professions like brokers and limited brokers, which require separate educational and licensing qualifications. This article addresses real estate salesperson licenses and is meant for those individuals who are new to the real estate profession or new to the Minnesota state requirements. All other individuals interested in additional licensing should visit the state’s real estate page to learn more on their requirements.

While the real estate licensing division of the Minnesota state government regulates the state licensing procedures for real estate professionals, national and international associations have been created to maintain standardization in this profession. The National Association of Realtors and the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO), two major organizations, work to establish and maintain regulations on a global basis to ensure that real estate professionals and commissions provide universally agreeable services. For more information on real estate standards, interested individuals should check out the organizations’ respective websites.


Leave a Reply