When you’re looking to buy or sell real estate, you want to be sure you have the most qualified professional by your side. A real estate transaction features unfamiliar terms, sometimes-confusing processes, and a swirl of emotions. You want someone with a steady hand to guide you through the entire experience. That means knowing whether to work with a real estate agent or real estate broker.
The Differences Detailed
What is the difference between a real estate agent and a broker … and why does it matter?
A real estate agent, or real estate salesperson, needs to take classes and pass an exam in order to become licensed in the state of California.
Agents handle the basic tasks of buying and selling. They are able to represent both buyers and sellers, create marketing for homes up for sale, and manage transactions.
Agents can also negotiate pricing, show homes, host open houses, and work on prospecting leads for buyers and sellers.
All real estate agents work under a brokers’ license. They cannot conduct business unless they are registered with a broker through the California Department of Real Estate.
Going with a real estate agent for your real estate needs carries with it some risk. Some agents may have little to no experience buying or selling real estate. They’re also unlikely to share with you how much experience they have.
Brokers Bring More Education, Training
In contrast, a real estate broker has more experience and expertise in managing the nuances of a real estate transaction. Brokers must pass all the real estate agent requirements while taking additional classes and passing a broker’s license exam.
This exam goes deeper into important subjects that focus on ethical behavior, contract management, tax issues, and insurance. Prospective brokers learn about the legal issues related to real estate and how the law applies to transactions and brokerage management.
Brokers are required to oversee agents, serving as a supervisor. They are legally responsible for the actions of their agents. Brokers must have a written agreement with each agent and maintain detailed records about real estate, including listings, deposit receipts, trust account documents, canceled checks and other records related to transactions. Brokers must also notify the state if they hire or fire an agent.
Brokers are held to a higher standard. In addition to the transactional records, brokers must also adhere to California guidelines about commissions paid on transactions, transaction disclosure agreements, pest control and escrow funds.
Brokers can work independently or hire and train a team of agents. They play an important role in helping determine what is best for each client and guiding agents to make smart decisions.
When you’re looking for a real estate professional, you want to work with someone who has the knowledge and experience to represent you and your interests. Scott Underwood has worked in real estate for more than 30 years. He founded Meadowbrook Realty to provide hands-on, client-focused service. Contact Scott Underwood for the best real estate broker Rossmoor CA has to offer,