Registration of real estate or letting agents
As a rule, real estate and letting agents have to register their business in the brokerage business register of the Regional State Administrative Agencies.
What is a brokerage business register?
We maintain a register of real estate and lettings agents. The register is public and anyone has the right to receive information from it. A link to the register is provided at the bottom of this page.
You can view the register information yourself or contact us for it. A certificate for information saved in the register is subject to a fee.
Do I need to register my business operations?
As a rule, real estate and letting agents have to enter their details into the brokerage business register maintained by the Regional State Administrative Agencies.
Real estate brokerage and rental apartment brokerage can only be practised by private traders or a legal person that is registered as a brokerage business. This is why before starting their operations, brokerage businesses have to register in the Regional State Administrative Agency of the area in which the brokerage business's management will mainly be operated. A brokerage business can have offices in areas of various Regional State Administrative Agencies.
Several independent brokerages can operate under the same brand name, whose registration location is determined by each administrative place of business.
Preconditions for registration
- The preconditions for registering a brokerage business are the following
- the trader has the right to engage in trade in Finland
- the notifying party is trustworthy
- the brokerage business has a person in charge
- the brokerage business has a sufficiently encompassing liability insurance.
The same person can act as the responsible person only in one agency registered in the agency register at the same time.
Preconditions for registration
If the business wants to register, the reliability evaluation of the notifying party will include the examination of company's highest management and individuals that own more than 25 percent of the business.
The evaluation of reliability will include i.a.:
- Is the notifying party unable to take care of their debts due to foreclosure or other investigations?
- Has the person in charge received a custodial sentence in the five years preceding the evaluation?
- In the three years preceding the evaluation, has the person in charge received a monetary penalty for a crime that can be viewed as proof that the person is visibly unsuitable for practising brokerage operations?
- Has the person in charge otherwise shown through their previous operations that they are visibly unsuitable for practising brokerage operations?
You can find more information about the new service notice in the instructions. Links to the forms are provided at the bottom of this page.
An individual can operate as the person in charge of the brokerage business, indicated by the professional qualification of a broker license examination
- if they are a licensed real estate agent for the real estate brokerage business's part
- if the they are a licensed housing rental agent for the rental premises brokerage business's part or a licensed real estate agent.
In addition, the person in charge has to
- be of legal-age
- be thrust worthy
- have passed the broker license examination
- nor can they be in bankruptcy.
The person in charge marked in the register has to take care that
- a good way of brokerage is used in the brokerage operations
- the operations are otherwise lawfully conducted
- in the brokerage business's service and in each of its offices at least half of the persons conducting brokerage operations have to have the professional competence of a person in charge
- other persons participating in the brokerage operations have a sufficient professional competence required for the task.
The notifying party has to have a sufficient liability insurance of the operations for covering possible property damages. The sufficiency of the brokerage bushiness's liability insurance depends on the quality and extent of the brokerage business, and it is determined case-by-case. The insurance has to always correspond with the insurance custom practises of the line of business.
The liability insurance of small brokerage businesses for real estates and business premises has to be at least €50,000 and the personal liability a maximum of €1,000. The liability insurance of small brokerage businesses for rental apartments has to be at least €20,000 and the personal liability a maximum of €1,000. For big businesses, the liability insurance has usually been €100,000–€200,000, with the personal liability being a maximum of €2,000–€3,000.
How to register a brokerage business
Familiarize yourself with the preconditions of the registration, especially with the requirements concerning the person in charge, professional qualification requirements and liability insurance requirements. In addition, familiarize yourself with other regulations and instructions concerning the operations.
After that, submit a notice for registering the brokerage business to the Regional State Administrative Agency of the area in which the brokerage management will mainly be operated. You can make the notice via form or E-services. Attach the consent of the person in charge for the task as well as a copy of the liability insurance documents to the notice. A link to the notice form is provided at the bottom of this page.
We will investigate the information for the professional competence, bankruptcy, ban on business operations, guardianship, fine register and criminal records of the person in charge, and we will acquire an extract from the Trade Register.
You can find more information about the new service notice for brokerage- and rental premises brokerage operations in the instructions. Links to the forms are provided at the bottom of this page.
Immediately inform about changes in the address, if the company name or liability has changed, about new office locations or ending the operations, to the Regional State Administrative Agencies.
You have to notify about the change of the person in charge at the latest one month from the previous responsible person's task ending. Please also notify immediately of any change of the persons in charge. Persons in charge include senior management as well as persons who own, either directly or indirectly, more than 25% of the business.
The target time for processing notices of new service forms is two weeks.
The registration decision of the brokerage business as well as changes in the register information are subject to a fee. Decision fees for registration notices (new service notices and notices of changes in register information) submitted in the e-service system are cheaper than for notices submitted on paper. For more information about the fees, see the Government Decree.
You will find more information about fees on our website Fees and charges.
The Regional State Administrative Agencies will remove the brokerage business if
- the brokerage business has ended their operations
- the brokerage business does not have a person in charge that fulfills the preconditions for registration, or the brokerage business has not reported a new person in charge
- there are serious or recurring cases of negligence in the brokerage business's or responsible person's operations, and there has been a previous fixed-term ban on operations that has been put in motion.
If the brokerage business has been removed from the register, change can be applied for by filing a complaint to the administrative court.
If the brokerage company has declared bankruptcy, it will stay in the register for six months. The person in charge for the insolvency estate has to immediately inform the Regional State Administrative Agencies that the brokerage business has declared bankruptcy.
Frequently asked questions
What can the Regional State Administrative Agency do if a real estate or letting agent does not comply with the law?
We can give a warning to the agent if it doesn't comply the law. If the negligence is serious or if it is repeated despite an improvement notice or warning given, we may prohibit the operation of the agent in part or in full for a maximum period of 6 months.
You can apply to the Consumer Disputes Board or a district court for compensation for damages or for a reduction in the agent’s fees.
The Consumer Disputes Board issues a recommendation for a decision, but it may reject the matter as inadmissible if you have not first contacted the consumer advice service to investigate the matter.
There is no registration obligation if your activities are occasional and you do not market your brokering services. However, you are allowed to market the properties you are brokering.