A natural or a legal person who meets the criteria for registration and whose name is entered in the register on agencies kept by the Regional State Administrative Agencies may operate as a real estate agent or housing rental agent in Finland. The criteria for operating as a real estate agent and best monitoring practices are laid down in an Act on real estate agencies and housing rental agencies (Finnish Statute No 1075/2000). This act is a part of the Finnish entrepreneurial law and it covers, with certain exceptions, all types of housing agencies. The competent authority responsible for the monitoring of the operation of real estate and housing rental agents is the Regional State Administrative Agencies who may interfere in inappropriate operation of a real estate agent or housing rental agent by coercive measures and, as a last resort, withdraw the agency from the register.
A person operating as a real estate agent or housing rental agent may participate in an examination arranged for real estate agents and housing rental agents. After having passed this examination the applicant becomes a licensed real estate agent (in Finnish: laillistettu kiinteistönvälittäjä, LKV) or a licensed housing rental agent (in Finnish: laillistettu vuokrahuoneistonvälittäjä, LVV). Examinations are arranged twice a year by the Board of Examiners for Real Estate Agents of the Central Chamber of Commerce.
Assignments for real estate agents and housing rental agents are governed by the provisions of a separate Act (1074/2005). The Act sets out criteria for the contracts to be concluded between the consumer and the real estate agent and on best practice when carrying out commissions. A real estate agent shall in his work also take account of the interests of the counterpart. The provisions of the law are imperative. An agent can collect a commission only when a contract setting out the terms and conditions of the commission has been concluded and no other agreement has been made.