A real estate agent helps buy and sell property. They also can help individuals rent and find places to rent.
You find this career appealing, especially because of the flexibility it provides; however, you may want to learn about a real estate agent salary before you invest in the training.
Responsibilities to Earn a Real Estate Agent Salary
Real estate agents work underneath a broker and are the ones responsible for helping clients rent, purchase, and sell properties.
On a regular basis, a real estate broker solicits potential clients by advertising and searching for individuals who want to buy, sell, or rent a property. As an agent, you’re the one who must provide people with information regarding prices, market conditions, and mortgages.
The agent must compare properties to determine the competition, and they must establish updated lists of properties for sale based on their location and the features of the dwelling.
A real estate agent markets properties by creating advertisements and hosting open houses. They must supply purchase offers to sellers and mediate negotiations between buyers and sellers. An agent prepares legal documents like purchase agreements, deeds, and loyalty contracts.
Although people may buy and sell homes on their own, they often opt to hire an agent in order to reduce complications.
Some real estate agents handle residential properties while others sell commercial properties. Although it’s not as common, some agents sell agricultural and industrial real estate.
Difference between Buyers’ and Sellers’ Agents
A buyers’ agent meets with clients who want to purchase a property. They help them decide how much they can afford and identify the pros and cons of different properties, so the prospective buyer may compare them.
A sellers’ agent meets with clients who want to sell their property. The agent helps them decide on the appropriate amount to sell their home for and find the target market to sell to.
Where a Real Estate Agent Works
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a majority of real estate agents were self-employed as of 2016. In fact, 56 percent of real estate agents were self-employed workers, although they still had to work underneath the supervision of a broker.
The rental, leasing, and real estate industry hired the second highest number of agents. The BLS stated 35 percent worked in this industry. The rest of the real estate agents worked in the field of construction.
You may work alone but have a supervising broker, or you may obtain a position with a large firm.
You might work in a typical office environment, or you could work out of your own home. It doesn’t matter where you work though because you spend much of your time away from your desk since you have to show properties and meet with potential clients.
Typical Schedule of a Real Estate Agent
In many cases, a real estate agent works more than 40 hours per week to earn a real estate agent salary, but some do work part-time and combine their real estate agent salary with their income from another source. It’s possible as an agent, you must work evenings and weekends since you must accommodate the schedules of your clients.
It’s possible you’ll have to spend time attending local events, so you can network and meet prospective clients. While you may work irregular hours, you may have the freedom to set your own schedule.
How to Become a Real Estate Agent
In order to become a real estate agent, you must complete real estate courses, so you can obtain your licensure. You could earn a certificate, associate’s, or bachelor’s degree in real estate. If you can’t find a program in your area, you may want to earn a certificate and take courses in law, economics, or business administration.
In order to earn your agent license, you must be at least 18 years of age and complete several real estate courses. Keep in mind, these requirements vary based on the state where you work.
You may need to pass a background check. You can’t transfer your license to another state, unless the state has reciprocity agreements, meaning they use your credits to obtain licensure in another state.
If you want to work completely for yourself, you may want to earn your broker license. You’ll need to have at least one to three years of experience working as a licensed agent before you can become a real estate agent. You might also need to take additional formal training.
Depending on your state’s requirements, you have to renew your license every two to four years. In most cases, you have to complete continuing education courses to renew your license.
General Information About a Real Estate
According to the BLS, a real estate agent salary was $49,990 per year as of May 2017. The lowest 10 percent earned $23,130 per year while the highest earners made over $109,490.
The mean salary as of May 2017 was $59,630, which is the equivalent of $28.67.
Those who worked in real estate, rental, or leasing made an average of $42,670 per year. Those who worked in construction made $54,670 per year.
Generally, your earnings as a real estate agent depend on your motivation and the types of properties you’re helping buy or sell. Keep in mind, much of your income as an agent is from commission. Generally, you make more money as you gain sales experience.
You may need to hold another position, so you can have income all year long because your earnings are often irregular. You may have one sale and then go months before you have another.
Top-Paying Industries for Real Estate Agents
Real estate is the industry that hired the most real estate agents, but this isn’t one of the higher paying industries. Residential construction ranked as the industry with the second highest level of employment. The third was the federal executive branch.
Traveler’s accommodations is the industry where real estate agents made the most. On average, an agent in this industry earned $116,000 annually, which is the same as $55.77 per hour. Those in oil or gas extraction made an average of $108,770 per year or $52.29 per hour. The natural gas distribution paid individuals an average of $102,040 annually or $49.06 hourly.
Real estate agents who work in computer systems design and related services make an average of $97,790 annually while those who work with food and beverage stores earn an average of $88,840.
States Where Real Estate Agents Make the Most
The BLS reported 147,960 people were real estate agents in May 2017. The states with the highest level of employment include the following: Florida, Texas, Georgia, California, and Washington. Florida alone had 17,750 agents working in it. Texas had an additional 15,770 real estate agents, and Georgia had 11,170.
The top-paying states for real estate agents include New York, Texas, Hawaii, Alaska, and Rhode Island. In New York, the annual mean wage is $102,310, the equivalent of $49.19 per hour. In Texas, real estate agents make a mean wage of $72,480 annually or $34.85 hourly.
The annual mean wage in Hawaii is $72,470 or $34.84 per hour. In Alaska, an average real estate agent earns $71,030 per year or $34.15 per hour. In Rhode Island, the hourly mean wage is $33.87 or $70,450 per year.
States Where Real Estate Agents
Make the Least
Some of the states where real estate agents make the least on average are:
In all of these states, a real estate agent earns an average of between $40,000 and $50,000. In Montana, the average real estate agent salary is $42,010 or $20.20 hourly. Real estate agents in Nebraska earn an average of $46,340 or $22.28.
Metropolitan Areas Where Real Estate Agents Make the Most
The metropolitan areas with the highest level of employment include Atlanta, GA, Houston, TX, Seattle, WA, and New York City, NY.
The only city with the highest level of employment to make the list as one of the top-paying metropolitan areas is New York City. Tyler, TX real estate agents earned an average of $93,870 annually or $45.13 hourly. Nassau County real estate agents earned an average of $87,270 per year, which is the same as $41.96 per hour.
Other cities to make the list of top-paying states for real estate agents include Greenley, CO, Urban Honolulu, HI, Santa Marie, CA, Bakersfield, CA, and Anaheim, CO.
Becoming a real estate agent doesn’t require an intensive level of education, and you do have the ability to earn a great deal of money. However, you often must work long hours to earn this income, and sometimes your hours are irregular, and you have to work on the weekends.
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