Due to the complex nature of buying, selling or letting a house, many people utilise the services of a Real Estate Broker. These experts help their clients in many different areas. From pricing the house to giving advice on selling and helping with the legal work, they know everything there is to know about the housing market.
A real estate broker acts as either the ‘Buyer’ or ‘Seller’ in a transaction. In any event, they will always do their best to get the best deal available. Due to their knowledge and experience, the deals that they get are usually far better than what someone would get if they went directly.
It’s also very useful in areas with very high competition. Good brokers will often know of properties before they even come onto the market. This is a great way to avoid the disappointment of properties being snapped up as soon as you see them listed.
When a person is looking to buy a house, a broker will meet with them and learn exactly what it is they’re looking for, what their budget is and any other information that’s important to their purchase. They’ll then find matches as close to these requirements as possible. If their client is selling, on the other hand, they will help them decide on an attractive selling price and find a buyer as quickly as possible.
It’s important to note the licensing requirements that come with being a real estate broker. All real estate brokers and sales agents in the US must be licensed.
It is also important to note that many real estate brokers will concentrate on either letting, buying, or selling, and then again on residential or commercial properties.
Education & Training
All real estate brokers must be, at the very minimum, be High School Graduates. However, due to the increasingly legal nature of the position, further education requirements are often needed to secure a position. Many Universities and Colleges offer specific real estate degrees.
Formal education of REALTORS®:
- Some college: 31%
- Bachelor’s degree: 30%
- Graduate degree and above: 12%
- Associate degree: 11%
- Some graduate school: 8%
- High school graduate: 7%
Many Universities and Colleges offer specific real estate degrees. However, qualifications in finance, business administration, statistics, economics, or law are also highly sought after.
There are online courses available to take as well, for people who want to study in their spare time. Many of these are also free and will give you a great insight into the mechanics of Real Estate. Bow are 4 examples of these, created by leading colleges and hosted by Coursera.
- Real Estate (Lecture from Financial Markets) – Yale
- Introduction to Real Estate, Regulation, and Enterprise – Professor Robert Shiller
- Real Estate Part I – University of Geneva
- Real Estate Part II – University of Geneva
There are also lots of other resources that will deepen your knowledge for example, such as the following:
Kevin Ward’s Real Estate Academy is really informative, covers all areas of working in the real estate arena and his videos are all available to watch for free on his Youtube Channel.
People beginning their careers in real estate will usually receive 1-2 years on the job training. This is the most important experience you will receive and sets yourself up to establish yourself in the sector.
It is also important to note that all though not educational requirements, real estate brokers are required to have a very good knowledge of their surrounding areas including the best neighbourhoods, schools, restaurants etc. Due to this, a great deal of continual networking will also be needed.
In essence, Real estate brokers and sales agents are at the centre of property transactions. Whether they’re purchases, sales or lettings; they will have been involved through all stages of the process.
Brokers and agents do similar jobs, but it is important to note that brokers are licensed to manage their own real estate businesses. Sales agents, however, must work with a broker but they do receive a commission on every deal they close. The duties of being a real estate broker include:
The duties of being a real estate broker include:
- Win new clients to buy, sell, and rent their properties.
- Advise clients on prices, mortgages and market conditions.
- Prepare advertising material for the property including descriptions, photographs etc.
- Promote these properties through online listing services, open houses etc.
- Accompany prospective buyers or renters to see properties.
- Mediate negotiations between buyers and sellers.
- Ensure all terms of purchase contracts are met.
- Prepare documents, such as contracts, purchase agreements, and deeds.
The Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO) estimates that there are about 2 million active real estate licensees in the United States, working with 86,004 real estate brokerage firms.
Of this number, 83% are independent contractors. Real Estate is a career that has a heavy bias towards eventual self-employment. It’s also very flexible in the fact that many employees telecommute into the office and spend a huge amount of their time on the road.
As well as this, there is a lot of out-of-office work that’s put in on the evenings and weekends. For a person that’s looking for a standard 9-5, this is not the right job for you.
However, if you enjoy sales, negotiating, socialising and being in charge of your own workload, this is definitely a career to consider.
Most real estate brokers start off as sales agents for a particular brokerage firm. They will undergo their training and specialise in a particular area, whether that’s selling, buying or lettings, commercial or residential.
They will then find that they build an impressive network and the deals will begin to close a little easier. This is when many Real Estate Brokers decide to go out on their own. If you’re not interested in self-employment, the fact that you can work as an independent contractor still offers plenty of opportunity.
* Important to Note
All Real Estate Brokers in the US need to be licensed.
This is a career that is heavily influenced by the current economic market. Fluctuations can have a big effect on your take home pay or even keeping your job. This is a factor more so here than in a lot of careers. However, if you’re prepared to put in the work, real estate offers fantastic remuneration opportunities when the market is stable to good.
Realtor – Quick Real Estate Statistics