Want to become a real estate agent in Michigan? Before you can begin selling homes, you have to get a salesperson license. Unlike other professions, you don’t need a college degree or years of on-the-job training. But there are a few requirements that have to be met no matter what type of experience you have.
Here are the six steps you have to take to get a license and start working as a Michigan real estate agent.
6 Steps to Becoming a Real Estate Agent in Michigan
1. Be 18 Years Old or Older
The first requirement you have to meet is the age limit. Only those who are 18 years old or older can get a Michigan real estate license.
2. Pass the Moral Character Specifications
Like many other states, Michigan requires that applicants be of good moral character. What exactly does that mean? It means if you’ve been convicted of a felony within the last 10 years or certain misdemeanors in the last five years you may not be eligible for a real estate license. LARA will do a background check so it’s best to be honest on the application about any prior legal issues.
3. Complete the Required 40 Hours of Pre-licensing Coursework
Everyone who applies for a real estate license in Michigan must complete prelicensing courses before they can take the licensing exam. This includes people who already have a real estate license in another state.
LARA requires 40 hours of pre-licensing coursework from an approved educator. Four of the coursework hours must cover civil rights law and equal opportunity in housing. The remaining 36 hours include topics that are on the licensing exam such as financing, state regulations and property ownership. Courses can be taken in-person or online.
4. Find a Broker Sponsor
Michigan real estate agents are independent contractors, but they aren’t completely on their own. You must work under the supervision of a broker sponsor. Any licensed broker in Michigan can act as a sponsor, but it’s important to find a brokerage that’s a good fit for your career goals.
Once you find a broker sponsor they must log in to the iCOLA system to approve the relationship and verify that they will, in fact, act as your broker.
Technically, you can wait to find a sponsoring broker until after you pass the licensing exam, but you won’t be issued an active license after passing. LARA will only issue licenses to agents that have a verified sponsoring broker. Exam results are only valid for one year so you’ll need to find a broker sponsor within that period. Also, LARA requires that you designate a sponsoring broker within one year of applying or you’ll have to resubmit and pay the application fee again.
5. Submit an Application
Now that you’ve met the education requirement and found a sponsoring broker it’s time to send in your real estate licensing application. You can submit an application online using the iCOLA system. You’ll also have to pay the $88 application fee when you submit.
You’ll be able to include your sponsoring broker’s information if you have one, but they still need to verify the working relationship after the application is submitted.
After LARA processes the application your information will be passed along to PSI, the licensing exam administrator.
6. Pass the Salesperson Licensing Exam
Before you can get a real estate license you have to prove you understand the basics by passing the licensing exam. Once your information is received by PSI you can register to take the exam at PSIexams.com
On exam day you’ll have your picture taken before starting the exam. It’s a pass/fail exam that covers national and Michigan-specific real estate questions. If you pass you’ll get a pocket license right then and there! Within two weeks the formal wall license will be sent to your sponsoring broker’s office.
If you pass but don’t have a sponsoring broker you won’t receive a license. However, your passing score will be recorded. As soon as you get a sponsoring broker and they submit the Employing Broker Notification form your Michigan real estate license will be issued.
If you don’t pass on your first attempt it’s okay. It happens to a lot of people. You’ll be able to retake the test and can still get a real estate license.
That’s it! In a matter of a month or two you can start your new career as a Michigan real estate agent.