Real Estate Agents vs. Brokers vs. Realtors: What's the Difference?

  • Apr 17, 2023
  • Dual Agency Real Estate
Real Estate Agents

Are you in the market for a new home, but feeling lost when it comes to the different titles of professionals in the real estate industry? Don't worry – you're not alone! There are often misconceptions about what exactly sets apart real estate agents, brokers, and realtors.


The Role of A Real Estate Agent


A real estate agent is a licensed professional who represents buyers and sellers in real estate transactions. Agents work in an agency, which is typically affiliated with a broker. The role of the agent is to negotiate the sale or purchase of property on behalf of their client.


There are a few key duties that an agent must perform in order to be successful. First, they must develop relationships with potential clients. This can be done through networking, marketing, and lead generation. Once a relationship is established, the agent will work with the client to determine their needs and wants in a property.


Next, the agent will search for properties that match the criteria provided by the client. They will also provide guidance on pricing and market conditions to help the client make informed decisions. After finding a suitable property, the agent will negotiate on behalf of the client to get the best possible price and terms for the sale or purchase.


Once a deal has been reached, the agent will continue to work with both parties until closing. They will handle any paperwork and coordinate with other service providers such as home inspectors and lenders. The goal of the agent is to make sure everything goes smoothly so that the transaction can close without any issues.


Choosing to work with a real estate agent can be a great way to simplify the process of buying or selling a home.


The Role Of A Real Estate Broker


A real estate broker is a licensed professional who acts as a middleman between buyers and sellers. Brokers work with both parties to negotiate a sale price and manage the paperwork involved in transferring ownership of the property.


While anyone can become a real estate agent by taking a few classes and passing a test, becoming a broker requires more education and experience. In most states, brokers must have at least two years of experience as an agent, as well as additional education in topics such as real estate law and finance.


The role of a broker is to provide expert guidance and advice throughout the process of buying or selling a home. They are also responsible for ensuring that all the necessary paperwork is completed correctly and in a timely manner. In some cases, brokers may even be able to help their clients get financing for their purchases.


The Role of A Realtor


A realtor is a professional who is licensed to help people buy, sell, or rent a property. They are members of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), which is a trade organization that sets standards for the industry and provides educational and other resources to its members.


Their role is to help their clients navigate the often complicated process of buying, selling, or renting property. This can include everything from finding the right property to negotiating the best price. They use their knowledge of the market and their negotiation skills to get the best deal for their clients.


If you're thinking about buying, selling, or renting property, working with a realtor can be a great way to make sure you get the best possible deal.


The Differentiation


These terms are often used interchangeably in the real estate industry. However, there are subtle but important differences between these professionals. Here's a quick breakdown of the key distinctions:


Agents: A real estate agent is a licensed professional representing buyers or sellers in the purchase or sale of a property. Agents work under the supervision of a broker.


Brokers: A real estate broker is a licensed professional who can buy, sell, or lease property on behalf of their clients. Brokers can also supervise agents. In order to become a broker, candidates must usually have more experience and education than agents.


Realtors: This term is actually a trademarked designation held by members of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). To be eligible for this designation, an individual must be a member of the NAR and must adhere to its code of ethics. While all realtors are agents or brokers, not all agents or brokers are realtors.




A real estate agent, broker, and realtor - all have important roles to play in the real estate industry. Agents are typically the ones working with potential buyers or sellers to find their perfect home. Brokers manage an office of agents by providing guidance, resources, and mentorship while a realtor works independently and can represent either buyer or seller clients. Knowing these distinctions between each profession is essential before you start looking for someone to represent your interests when buying or selling a property.


Hello! I'm Jay Thomas, A REALTOR in Houston, Texas. Chances are you and I share a similar passion, Real Estate! I also have a passion for building businesses, working out, inspiring others, technology, sports, and people. Connect with me on Facebook and Instagram!

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