Property Management requirements in Illinois

Must Illinois property managers have a real estate broker's license?

YES. Key components of property management (renting and leasing) are considered real estate activities under existing Illinois real estate licensing laws. A person needs a real estate license if they provide assistance intended to result in the sale or lease of real estate. The definition of the word "broker" in the Illinois Real Estate Act provides 11 examples of the types of "assistance" that require a real estate -license. Included are: representing clients in the negotiation of real estate sales contracts or leases, and issuing advertisements for the sale, purchase or lease of real estate.

Property management activities that involve general administration, like contracting for property maintenance (garbage pick-up, etc.) and paying general expenses (utilities, etc.), do NOT require a real estate license. Serving as an accountant for association dues also does not require a real estate license.

Property management activities that involve a conveyance of real estate by contract or lease require a real estate license. Examples of property management activities involving a conveyance include: showing a unit for sale or lease, negotiating lease or real estate contract terms, maintaining security deposits, rent payments or earnest money deposits.

Are there any exceptions to the requirement that an Illinois property manager have a broker's license?

Yes. For example, a “leasing agent” license is available and can be used only for residential leasing activities. Leasing agents must be sponsored and employed by a sponsoring broker. In addition, onsite residential managers who engage in leasing activities are exempt.

For more information about these and other Illinois property management requirements and exceptions, please contact the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation - Real Estate Division.

Before hiring a property manager to manage your Illinois rental property, you should always check that he or she is licensed appropriately. You can check the license status of Illinois property managers at the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation license lookup webpage.

Must Illinois community association managers have a real estate broker's license?

NO. However, a community association manager license is required to for any person who handles, collects or disburses funds or who maintains financial records or a budget for a community association in Illinois. A “Community Association Manager” is anyone who, for compensation, administers the financial, administrative, maintenance or other duties for the community association.

Are there any exceptions to the requirement that an Illinois community association manager have a CAM license?

YES. For example, community and condo association directors, officers or members are exempt if they provide the services without compensation. In addition, a CAM license is not required if the homeowner's association is 10 units or less.

Other exceptions also apply. For more information please contact the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation's Community Association Manager webpage.

Illinois Real Estate Licensing Requirements

As of 5/1/2011, Illinois no longer issues salesperson licenses. Rather than having salesperson licenses and broker licenses, Illinois has leasing agent licenses, broker licenses, and managing broker licenses. In addition, CAM licenses are required for community association managers.

Illinois Managing Broker Licensing Requirements

Illinois managing broker license requirements include:

  • Age: Must be at least 21 years old.
  • High School: Must have graduated high school or equivalent
  • Education: 45 hours of approved managing broker instruction
  • Experience: Must have been either a salesperson or a broker for two of the past three years and hold an active valid Illinois real estate broker license.
  • Exam: Pass the managing broker exam.
  • Fee: Initial license fee is $150.

    Illinois Broker Licensing Requirements

    Illinois broker licensing requirements include:

  • Age: Must be at least 21 years old.
  • High School: Must have graduated high school or equivalent
  • Education: 90 hours of approved instruction set forth by the Advisory Council. In addition, 30 hours of post-license education is required before the first license renewal.
  • Exam: Pass the broker exam.
  • Fee: Initial license fee is $125.

    Illinois Leasing Agent Licensing Requirements

    Illinois leasing agent licensing requirements include:

  • Age: Must be at least 21 years old.
  • High School: Must have graduated high school or equivalent
  • Education: 15 hours of approved instruction related to leasing residential property.
  • Exam: Pass the leasing agent exam.
  • License Fee: Initial fee is $75.

    Illinois Community Association Manager Licensing Requirements

    Illinois CAM license requirements include:

  • Age: Must be at least 21 years of age
  • High School: Must have graduated high school or equivalent
  • Exam: Must pass either the National Board of Certification for Community Association Managers (NBC-CAM) Certified Manager of Community Associations (CMCA) exam OR the Institute of Real Estate Management Common Interest Developments: Managing Condominium Association Properties exam.
  • Fee: Application fee is $300.

    For more information about these and other licensing requirements, please contact the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation - Real Estate Division.

    IMPORTANT: This information is intended for informational purposes only and under no circumstances should it be considered legal advice or relied upon without first confirming its contents with your state real estate commission. Laws are updated frequently, and this information may not reflect the current law in your state. To confirm the specific requirements for each state, please contact your state real estate commission.

    Property Management Requirements Main Page

  •