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Real Estate Broker Agent

Career Overview

Real estate brokers and agents do the same type of work - the difference is that a real estate broker is licensed to run his or her own business. Real estate agents work for brokers, generally on a contract basis.

Real estate brokers and agents represent real property sellers or buyers. They spend a lot of time looking at properties. If they are representing a buyer, they set up property tours for their client, handle any sales negotiations, and then see the transaction through the title search, appraisal and inspection process, while making sure that all steps are completed by the close of escrow.


Real estate brokers and agents must be high school graduates. They must also be licensed and pass an exam, and every state has a requirement for a certain number of hours of classroom time. Many brokers have some college, but many also turn to real estate as a second career and take courses in real estate, finance, business administration and real estate law in order to get into the business. Many work as agents for a period of time and then apply for a broker's license when they have sufficient experience.

Current Employment

Brokers and agents held 564,000 jobs in 2006, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Three quarters of those professionals are agents.

Job Outlook

Real estate jobs were projected to grow at about a 10% rate over the decade between 2006 and 2016. That projection was made before the real estate market collapsed in 2008.

Salary Range

Lowest 10%  $12.50  $25,990
Median Salary  $28.30  $58,860
Highest 25%  $48.23  $100,570

Lowest 10%  $10.06  $20,930
Median Salary  $19.52  $40,600
Highest 10%  $51.34  $106,790

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