This article is part of a larger series on How to Become a Real Estate Agent.
The real estate license requirements in Michigan are fairly easy compared to other states. You are required to complete 40 hours of prelicensing education, apply for your license, pass your exam, and once you select your sponsoring brokerage, you’re on your way to a lucrative real estate career. Grab your can of Vernors and join us in reviewing this step-by-step guide to getting your Michigan real estate license.
1. Meet the Legal Requirements for Your Michigan Real Estate License
In order to be qualified to become a real estate agent in the Great Lakes State, you must fulfill basic requirements. You must be at least 18 years of age or older, have a high school diploma or GED, and are a U.S. citizen or lawfully admitted alien. These are very typical qualifications throughout the country.
Did you know? If you would like to work in states besides Michigan, you need to know the real estate license reciprocity and portability laws specific to the state. Michigan has no formal reciprocity agreements with other states; however, individuals licensed in another state may qualify for a Michigan real estate license if their experience and training are substantially equal to that required in Michigan. You can visit Michigan.gov to see if you qualify.
Michigan is also a cooperative state in terms of portability. This means Michigan allows out-of-state real estate agents or brokers to physically enter the state to conduct real estate business. However, in order for out-of-state agents to work on a real estate transaction, they must have a co-brokerage agreement with a licensee of that state. To learn more about real estate license portability in Michigan, check out our guide on real estate license reciprocity and portability here.
2. Complete Required Prelicensing Courses
Both Trolls and Yoopers alike are required to complete their prelicensing education. These can be taken in-person or at an accredited Michigan online real estate school. Pricing for online classes range from $149 to $310 and include the following topics:
- Michigan license law and rules
- Contracts, liens, and community ownership
- Taxation, pricing property
- Introduction to finance and real estate
- Math property descriptions and title and property ownership
- Leasing land use
Did you know? Most states will allow active members of the Bar Association an exemption to prelicensing real estate education, but Michigan does not. However, once you’re ready to obtain your broker’s license, MBA or law degree credits may be substituted toward the 90-hour broker prelicensing hours.
To receive your Certificate of Completion from your education provider, you must pass the school exam, which is separate from the Michigan state real estate licensing exam. The school exam is administered by the school you’ve completed your courses at and will be proctored online or in-person. Once you’ve received a 70% passing score from your school, you’re ready to begin applying for your license.
Finding an online real estate school that best suits your needs and learning style can be difficult, but we can help with that. Take a look at our guide to the best accredited online real estate schools to get an idea of what’s available. With a nationwide reputation and high quality education to boot, Kaplan can be a great option for your prelicensing education.
3. Apply for Your Michigan Real Estate License
The state of Michigan no longer accepts paper applications, but applying online is even easier because you can track the status of your application and receive electronic notifications.
If you do possess a criminal record, you will still be considered for a Michigan real estate license. The Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) will require you to include details of your criminal record when you submit your license application so they can review the specifics of the case in order to accept or deny your application. You can submit your convictions and additional court documentation using the Request for Conviction History Form to determine your eligibility.
To apply for your license, you must first make an account on MiPLUS, the Michigan-specific licensing system. Once you’ve created your login, you’ll be able to submit your application and any additional documentation through the online portal. Keep in mind that there is an application fee of $88 payable by credit or debit card. Application processing can take anywhere from six to eight weeks, so it’s important to complete it as soon as possible after completing your prelicensing education.
Once your application is approved, you will receive an email from LARA notifying you of your Exam Candidate ID Number, which is your authorization to register for the exam. You have up to one year after course completion to take your exam. In addition, on your application, you can select your sponsoring brokerage or you can wait until after passing the exam to include that detail.
4. Take the Michigan Real Estate Exam
Once you’ve completed your prelicensing education and school exam, it’s time to pass the Michigan real estate license exam. The exam is administered on the computer so you are given your pass or fail exam result immediately after finishing. If you do not pass, you will receive an individual score for each of the topic sections so you can use this information to study for re-examination. The good news is that you can take the exam as many times as you’d like for up to a year from course completion until you pass it.
Michigan Real Estate Exam Details
Items to Bring to Exam
2 valid forms of identification:
70% to pass the Michigan Real Estate Salesperson Exam
Unfortunately, unlike other states, Michigan does not track the exam pass rate
Schedule Your Exam
After you’ve received email authorization, you can schedule your exam with PSI, which is a national provider for state licensing exams. You’ll be required to create an account on the PSI website, which will then allow you to access the scheduling portal. The fee to take the exam is $79 and can be paid directly on the website using a credit or debit card. You will receive a copy of the Candidate Information Bulletin for additional testing information.
If you’re looking for help studying for the test, we recommend Real Estate Exam Scholars for a comprehensive exam prep course. They offer top-notch exam prep for an affordable price. Even better, they also offer a money-back guarantee if you don’t pass on the first try.
5. Pick a Company to Work For
To have an active Michigan real estate license, you must find a sponsoring brokerage to work under and your sponsoring brokerage must confirm your employment through MiPLUS. To make your choice a little bit easier, check out our in-depth guide on choosing the right real estate company to work for. There are many brokerages in Michigan that are outstanding, but here are the top five brokerages reported for 2021*.
Keller Williams Realty
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Michigan Real Estate
The Hargreaves Scopacasa Group
Coldwell Banker Preferred, Realtors
Lucas Howard Group
Keller Williams Realty
The Monzo Group
Keller Williams Realty
St Clair Shores
*Data from Real Trends 2021
Michigan Counties With Highest Median Sales Price 2021
With higher sales prices come higher commissions for you. To get a sense of which counties offer the best opportunities for big bucks in Michigan, check out this sales data from Towncharts.com below:
6. Start Your Real Estate Career
Now that you’ve learned how to get a real estate license in Michigan, you’re ready to start your real estate journey. For more information, here are some of our articles with content that is perfect for new real estate agents:
- Our article with 14 Real Estate Agent Tips covers the basics that every agent should know when they are starting out, including how to write a real estate business plan
- Learn how to generate real estate buyer leads
- Get nine strategies to help with real estate seller lead generation
- Jumpstart your career with the top 25 New Real Estate Agent Tips From the Pros
- Get the tools you need to build a strong real estate business out of the gate using the best real estate software and tools