If you’re a Michigander who loves the idea of a flexible schedule and unlimited earning potential, then it’s time to pursue a Michigan real estate license. To be eligible for a Michigan real estate license, you must be at least 18 years old and be of good, moral character.

In this article, we’ll review the costs involved, walk you through the four easy steps you’ll need to take to launch a real estate career in Michigan, and finally, we’ll answer frequently asked questions. Let’s get started!

Infographic: How to get your Michigan real estate license

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Real Estate License in Michigan?

It costs approximately $405 to get your real estate license in Michigan, including the cost of a 40-hour prelicensing course required by the state. Some of the costs are fixed, such as the state’s licensing and exam fees, while the price of prelicensing education (and optional exam prep materials) will vary depending upon the provider you choose.

Michigan Real Estate License Costs

Prelicensing Classes (40 Hours)$179 (through Colibri Real Estate)
Michigan Real Estate License Application Fee$88
Testing Fee$79
Total Cost$346

(Michigan Real Estate License Costs as of October 2022)

Save 25% off the cost of your prelicensing education through Colibri Real Estate by using the coupon code “TheClose25”.

How to Get a Michigan Real Estate License in 4 Easy Steps

The process of becoming a Michigan real estate salesperson is straightforward. You must take 40 hours of coursework, apply for a license with the state, pass the exam, and then find a broker to hold your license.

How to Get A Michigan Real Estate License - Quick Facts

1. Complete a 40-Hour Prelicensing Course

Cost: As low as $179 with Colibri Real Estate
Time Commitment: 2-4 weeks
Helpful Resource: 6 Best Online Michigan Real Estate Schools

Begin the process of earning your Michigan real estate license by signing up for 40 hours of prelicensing classes. Your Michigan real estate course will teach the fundamentals of practicing real estate, and will prepare you for the Michigan real estate license exam.

Prelicensing courses will cover the legal and financial aspects of buying and selling property, including these topics:

  • Property ownership
  • Land use controls and regulations
  • Valuation and market analysis
  • Financing
  • General principles of agency
  • Property disclosures
  • Contracts
  • Leasing and property management
  • Transfer of title
  • The practice of real estate
  • Real estate calculations
  • Duties and powers of the Department and the State Board of Real Estate
  • Licensing requirements
  • Contractual relationships
  • Additional state topics

This may seem like a lot of information to cover in just 40 hours. We recommend choosing a Michigan real estate school known for breaking down complicated material as well as one that fits your schedule and learning style.

Do you learn better in a traditional classroom when interacting with a teacher and other students? Do you need a regimented schedule to force you to get through the materials in a timely manner? If so, narrow your search to in-person classes. Please keep in mind that attendance is mandatory, so choose a class time that works with your schedule.

For in-person classes, consider the Michigan Institute of Real Estate. They offer day and evening classes with a textbook. If you are a self-starter and prefer to work at your own pace, consider signing up for online classes with a provider like Colibri Real Estate.

Here are the pros and cons of in-person, livestream, and online classes that let you learn at your own pace.

Types of Instruction
In-person Classes
  • Traditional classroom setting

  • Get to know other students

  • Easy access to the instructor
  • More expensive than online classes

  • Commuting and traffic

  • Finding class times to fit your schedule
Livestream Classes
  • No commute

  • Ideal if you live far from in-person schools

  • You can ask instructors questions in real time
  • Finding classes to fit your schedule

  • No interaction with other students

  • Technology doesn’t always work as it should
Online Classes
  • Work at your own pace anywhere with internet

  • Take classes when convenient for you

  • Least expensive option
  • Instructors can only be accessed via email or phone

  • Little interaction with real estate pros

  • Technology doesn’t always work as it should

Pro tip: If completing your classes online school appeals to you, we recommend Colibri Real Estate. Colibri Real Estate is a powerhouse in the online real estate education space. Their Michigan real estate classes are affordable, and the materials are presented clearly and concisely.

You can save 25% on your Michigan real estate prelicensing courses with Colibri Real Estate when you use the promo code “TheClose25” at checkout.

2. Submit an Application to the State Licensing Agency

Cost: $88
Time Commitment: 1 hour
Helpful Resource: How to Get a Real Estate License in 5 Easy Steps

Once you’ve completed your prelicensing classes, you’re ready to fill out the online application for your Michigan real estate license. The first part of the application process requires that you create an online account with the Michigan Professional Licensing User System (MiPLUS).

The fee for the application is $88. However, the application fee to become a licensed real estate agent may be waived to benefit qualifying veterans.

The online application allows you to name the broker under which you will work. It’s unnecessary to name the broker before taking and passing the exam, but you won’t receive a photo ID and become officially licensed until this step is completed.

3. Pass the Michigan Real Estate License Exam

Cost: $79
Time Commitment: 3 hours (arrive 30 minutes early to the testing site)
Helpful Resource: 7 Hacks for the Real Estate Practice Exam

How to Get A Michigan Real Estate License Exam - Quick Facts

Once you’ve completed the 40 hours of coursework and the online application, you’ll need to schedule your Michigan real estate license exam online. The exam is administered through PSI, and the fee of $79 can paid when you schedule your exam through their website.

The exam takes about three hours. PSI’s Michigan testing centers can be found in these locations:

  • Dearborn
  • Gaylord
  • Grand Rapids
  • Holt
  • Marquette
  • Southfield

Your grade on the exam will be available immediately upon completion. A passing grade is 70%. If you don’t pass, you’ll receive an individual score for each of the exam’s major sections. You can retake the test, but you’ll need to pay the $79 exam fee each time.

4. Join a Michigan Real Estate Brokerage

Two successful businesswomen are shaking hands. They are standing near the office and smiling.

Cost: Free
Time Commitment: 2 weeks
Helpful Resource: What’s the Best Real Estate Company to Work for?

Real estate agents in Michigan must work under a licensed broker. To find a broker, start by researching the brokerages in your area. You don’t have to wait until you pass the real estate license exam to start having discussions with area brokers. In fact, if you know which brokerage you’ll be working with when you become a fully licensed agent, you can submit that information on the application form.

You may feel drawn to work with big-name real estate agencies. They often have programs to assist a beginning salesperson in navigating the new profession. Don’t ignore smaller brokerages, though. The brokers working in these agencies may also offer valuable insights and can help you make meaningful connections.

Real Estate Compensation

Whether you reach out to a big-name agency or a smaller company, you need to understand how you’ll be compensated. Here are some things you’ll want to ask about when searching for the right brokerage for you.

Split: Typically, real estate agents earn a 3% commission when assisting people with buying or selling real estate. Your broker will get a portion of the commission, and you get the rest. You’ll find that some brokerages will ask for a 50/50 split on commissions. Ask each potential broker what your split will be.

Desk Fees: Usually, brokerages that offer an even split will not charge monthly desk fees. Desk fees are due whether you make a sale that month or not. Ask if a brokerage charges desk fees, and how much your monthly costs will be.

Cap: You may also want to discuss your cap, or the highest amount that the agency will take from your commissions within a given year. Once your brokerage has earned a set amount of money based on your sales, you’ll keep 100% of your commissions for the remainder of the year.

Make sure to check out The Close’s deep-dive into the best real estate brands in the country here: What’s the Best Real Estate Company to Work for?

How to Get a Michigan Real Estate License: FAQs

We know you’re excited to get started on your new real estate career, but first, take a moment to review some of the frequently asked questions beginning real estate agents often have about the profession.

More Career Resources From The Close

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