Real estate agents, brokers and appraisers industry

A “real estate broker” is any person, partnership, limited partnership, limited liability company, association, professional corporation, or corporation, foreign or domestic who, for another, and for a compensation or valuable consideration, does, or attempts to do, any or all of the following:

  1. Sells, exchanges, purchases, rents or leases real estate;
  2. Offers to sell, exchange, purchase, rent or lease real estate;
  3. Negotiates or offers or agrees to negotiate the sale, exchange, purchase, rental or leasing of real estate;
  4. Lists or offers or agrees to list real estate for sale, lease, rental or exchange;
  5. Buys, sells, offers to buy or sell or otherwise deals in options on real estate or improvements thereon;
  6. Advertises or holds himself or herself out as a licensed real estate broker while engaged in the business of buying, selling, exchanging, renting or leasing real estate;
  7. Assists or directs in the procuring of prospects, calculated to result in the sale, exchange, leasing or rental of real estate;
  8. Assists or directs in the negotiation of any transaction calculated or intended to result in the sale, exchange, leasing or rental of real estate;
  9. Engages in the business of charging to an unlicensed person an advance fee in connection with any contract whereby the real estate broker undertakes to promote the sale of that person’s real estate through its listing in a publication issued for such purpose intended to be circulated to the general public;
  10. Performs any of the foregoing acts as an employee of, or on behalf of, the owner of real estate, or interest therein, or improvements affixed thereon, for compensation.

A “real estate salesperson” is any person, who for a compensation or valuable consideration becomes associated, either as an independent contractor or employee, either directly or indirectly, with a real estate broker to do any of the things above mentioned, as a whole or partial vocation. The provisions of sections 339.010 to 339.180 shall not be construed to deny a real estate salesperson who is compensated solely by commission the right to be associated with a broker as an independent contractor.

Realtors are required to be licensed through the state. All new licensees or renewals now require fingerprinting. Rules, statutes and applications are available from:

Missouri Real Estate Commission
3605 Missouri Boulevard
PO Box 1339
Jefferson City MO 65102-1339

Missouri Real Estate Appraisers Commission
3605 Missouri Boulevard
PO Box 1335
Jefferson City MO 65102

Pursuant to Executive Order 17-03 and Section 536.175 RSMo., the MREC will be conducting a review of all of its rules between September 2017 and May 2018.

Legal structure

Anyone conducting business in the State of Missouri under a name other than their own legal name (e.g., John Doe), must register the business name with the Missouri Secretary of State. Missouri law allows businesses to operate under four forms or organization:

  • Sole proprietorship
  • Partnership – general and limited
  • Corporation – C-Corp; S-Corp; Professional, Not-for-Profit; Foreign Corporation
  • Limited Liability Company – LLC

Each structure has its own advantages and disadvantages and there are many modifications and variations within these forms. The key to selection revolves around the concept of liability and taxation. You must decide which of these structures best suits your business. In choosing your business structure, consult with a qualified accountant and/or attorney who are familiar with your resources and objectives.

A description of the forms of organization and some of the advantages and disadvantages are discussed in Legal structures and Starting a New Business in Missouri. Choosing a particular structure does not necessarily determine how the business will be taxed.

The Licenses and registration checklist is a guide to help you with the licensing and registration requirements for starting your new business.

You can download forms on the Web at or contact the Secretary of State’s Office at 573-751-4936.


Understanding the taxes that apply to your business and how to meet the legal requirements of those taxes is critical. Consultation with an accountant or attorney is advisable.

Tax considerations are essential during the formation of a new business and during its entire life. When a business is just starting out, it may have little or no income or assets and the choice of structure may not seriously affect its tax liability. However, as the business grows, the tax implications become more significant.

Doing Business in Missouri: Legal Formation identifies the state and federal forms that must be filed for different business structures and compares the tax liabilities for the most common business structures.

For more information on taxes and access to printable copies of the required forms visit: Doing Business in Missouri: Taxes.

Hiring employees

Obtain a copy of  Employer’s Tax Guide (PDF)  from or call 800-829-3676. This guide (“Circular E”) explains federal tax withholding and Social Security tax requirements for employers as well as containing current withholding tables for you to use to determine how much federal income tax and Social Security tax is to be withheld from each employee’s paycheck.

For a complete discussion on hiring employees, your responsibilities, and access to the required forms, refer to: Doing Business in Missouri: Hiring Employees.

Business resources and guides

You may also find the following information helpful as you begin your business:

  • Starting a New Business in Missouri is an excellent publication on the process of starting and operating a business in Missouri.
  • Evaluating Your Business Idea is a simple questionnaire-formatted document that helps you think through the elemental considerations in starting a business.
  • Guide to Writing a Business Plan provides a short, but thorough introduction to the process of writing a business plan and provides a simple outline of the contents of a standard plan.
  • is a network of key business resource providers in Missouri. The website contains a vast array of helpful documents, links and information on starting and operating your small business as well as a calendar of upcoming training and educational events throughout Missouri. Find a business counselor near you.
  • Contact your local (county, city, township) government offices early in the planning stages of your business. The requirement for local licenses and permits vary by county and city. Most cities, and some counties, require businesses to be licensed. Check with the city business/merchant license office and/or the county collector’s office for the requirements in your area. Be sure to check with the local city and/or county planning/zoning department to make sure that the site you have selected for your business is zoned to accommodate the activities of your business. These offices can be found in your local phone directory.
  • Missouri Lawyer Referral Service (
  • Missouri Society of Accountants 800-959-4276  or
  • The Missouri Society of CPAs 800-264-7966 or