A Guide To Becoming A Successful Real Estate Agent in Malaysia


The real estate industry opens doors to a myriad of opportunities. Albeit complex, joining this industry can be extremely rewarding.

One of the main players in the game is known as a Real Estate Agent (REA). Becoming a REA can be demanding, but the satisfaction of closing sales, making connections and more is invaluable. Read on to equip yourself with the A-Z of what makes a Real Estate Agent!

  1. What is a Real Estate Agent? (REA) 
  2. How Do I Become A Successful Real Estate Agent in Malaysia?
  3. Real Estate Agent or Real Estate Negotiator – Which One Is Better?

What is a Real Estate Agent (REA)?

A Real Estate Agent (REA) is a person who is registered as an estate agent under BOVAEA. REAs are bound by BOVAEA’s code of standards, which consists of rules, regulations and a code of ethics and conduct known as the ‘Malaysian Estate Agency Standards’. REAs are required to follow this strict code of standards, which acts as a guide for them to conduct business and engage with clients and other agents. 

How Do I Qualify For a Real Estate Agent License?

To become a real estate agent, you must:

  • Be a Malaysian citizen or permanent resident.
  • Be 17 years old and above.
  • Hold an SPM certificate with 5 or more subject passes, with at least 3 credits from those subjects.
  • One of the credits must be from one of the following subjects: Commerce, Mathematics, Accounting or Science.

If you do not have an SPM qualification, a higher qualification that is recognized by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency and Jabatan Perkhidmatan Awam can be considered.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Real Estate Agent?


The path to becoming a real estate agent can be stressful and time-consuming. REAs need to go through two years of study to attain a Diploma in Estate Agency, moderated by the BOVAEA. After receiving the diploma, they must go through a two-year practical training period supervised by a fully qualified REA. They will then submit a work log of their experience during the training to the BOVAEA to obtain approval and appraisal.

In case you’re curious to know where to start, here are the steps that one has to go through to become a certified REA!

Step 1: Examinations (Part 1)

The first step in becoming a real estate agent is to go through 6 exams in Part 1. Each exam costs RM50 and is subject to a RM50 processing fee.

However, those who have a degree or have majored in property-related courses do not need to go through the estate agent’s written examination. The BOVAEA website provides a comprehensive list of recognized degrees that qualify for the exemption.

Step 2: Examinations (Part 2)

After passing the exams in Part 1, you are required to sit for another 6 exams and ensure that you pass all 6 courses. These two steps usually take around two years to complete.

Step 3: Practical Training

Now that you’ve completed and passed all of your exams, it’s time to gain experience! The next step is to register as a probationary estate agent and go through a two-year placement with an accredited real estate agency. Probationary estate agents are required to produce a work log of their experience in the field.

Step 4: Oral Examination

The final step is to take the Test of Professional Competence. This oral test gives you the chance to show what you have learned throughout your theoretical and practical experience in the real estate industry!

It is recommended that you purchase a copy of the Rules & Guidelines to the Test of Professional Competence for the Estate Agency Practice from BOVAEA before taking the exam.

Once you pass the examination, you will receive your Diploma in Estate Agency and officially become a Real Estate Agent in Malaysia!

What Does a Real Estate Agent Do?


If you’re looking to buy or sell the property and you need a helping hand, REAs are the ones you call! Armed with the skills and expertise needed on all things real estate, they can guide you from start to finish.

Some of the things that real estate agents do are:

  • Finding the right people to sell your property to
  • Selling your property at the best price
  • Advertising your property effectively
  • Bringing clients for viewing
  • Finding the right contacts in the industry
  • Giving insights on the real estate market

Having a REA to assist you can save a lot of time and energy, making your property journey a breeze!

How Do I Become A Successful Real Estate Agent in Malaysia?


Becoming a REA requires skill and hard work, but with time and effort, anyone can become a REA and start living the life of their dreams!

Here are a few traits that help REAs walk their path to success:

  1. Being a people person

You enjoy interacting with others! Talking to people keeps you going, and you have a way of making others feel comfortable around you.

  1. Trustworthy

You are dependable, and people trust you with their information. You would go the extra mile for others and make sure you deliver the best results possible.

  1. Communication expert

You are good at maintaining contact with others, and you’re good at reading cues and understanding people’s behavior.

  1. Persuasive

You know how to convince and make others listen to you. Using this skill to its advantage makes you close sales like a champ!

  1. Pay attention to the details

You work hard and you have an eye for detail. You make sure that everything goes without a hitch and leave little room for mistakes.

Don’t be discouraged if you don’t see yourself in the list above! With a bit of work, these skills can be developed, and you can become a successful REA in no time.

Real Estate Agents (REA) vs. Real Estate Negotiators (REN)


If you know about real estate agents (REA), you’ve probably heard of real estate negotiators (REN). Regardless, you might think that they’re similar. However, there are a few key differences that distinguish a Real Estate Negotiator (REN) from a Real Estate Agent (REA).

What is a Real Estate Negotiator (REN)?

A real estate negotiator (REN) is someone who has been hired by a company to list and market properties under the supervision of a registered real estate agent (REA).

This means that to work in the industry, real estate negotiators (REN) cannot work independently they need to be attached to a real estate firm registered under the BOVAEA and supervised by a real estate agent.

In order to register and become accredited as a real estate negotiator with BOVAEA, they are required to complete a two-day course known as the Negotiator’s Certification Course (NCC), where they will learn the basics of laws, regulations, and best practices in an estate agency.

The clearest difference that you will see is that REAs will have a blue name tag, while RENs will have a red name tag.

Real Estate Agent or Real Estate Negotiator – Which One Is Better?

In most cases, if one is looking to buy or rent a house in Malaysia, they will be liaising with RENs instead of REAs, since there are more negotiators than agents.

Agents are able to run their own real estate company by registering for a license with BOVAEA, and they can also single-handedly provide real estate services such as selling or renting out properties. Licensed agents usually hire negotiators, and they can hire up to 50 RENs in each real estate agency.

Unlike agents, negotiators are unable to operate or own a real estate company – they will have to work with licensed agents in a registered agency. However, they do not have to go through the complicated and time-consuming process that agents do.

The question of which one is better boils down to what you want in your property journey. RENs may not need to go through the process of acquiring a diploma, but they still possess the relevant knowledge needed for the sale of the property. The major difference is that agents are able to operate their own agency, which negotiators do not have the power to do.


Now that you have a clear idea of what makes a real estate agent, you are well on your way to acquiring the knowledge you need about the real estate industry! We hope that this article has shed some light for you to embark on your property journey.

So, what else are you waiting for? Come and be a REN with us today! 

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