PART 2 – Real Estate Broker and Agent – what do all those titles really mean?
Investing in Real Estate is usually one of the most complex endeavors and financial events in people’s lives. The investment can be a home to live in, or it can be income-producing property e.g. rental property or land. The term Real Estate refers to all land and everything that is on it or below it e.g. a house, or the oil underneath. The complexity and importance of the transaction requires the assistance of a trained professional the customer can trust and rely on.
Typically the person to assist in those kinds of transactions is a Real Estate Broker or Agent; their training and their knowledge of the market and the business makes them professionals and an asset for their customers. A real estate professional who is familiar with the area, local tax and zoning laws, plans for possible future developments will be able to find the best fit for his clients’ needs and budget.
Brokers and Real Estate Agents in the United States, other than in most European countries, are licensed and undergo structured education and a state exam. In order to keep their licenses up certain continuing education hours are required on a regular schedule. This regulation along with numerous other requirements and qualifications e.g. trustworthiness, organizational skills, good judgment, and honesty ensures that the customer or client can rely on working with a well trained professional. Real Estate has, in recent years, become a profession that can also be studied in a university or college setting and realtors may hold associate or bachelor degrees.
Brokers are licensed to manage their own company, agents must work for a licensed Broker; they usually provide their services on contract basis and receive a portion of the sales commission from the Broker as he is the one who assumes responsibility for the business transaction. Brokers and Agents who are members in a local association and the National Association of Realtors are held to a strict code of ethics and receive formal training.
Brokers and Agents spend a significant amount of their time promoting their services, identifying and obtaining properties to sell or properties potential buyers may be interested in. Usually after contact with a client is established and the client’s interests and needs are clear the Agent or Broker will utilize the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), a real-time computerized data-bank to find the most suitable options on the market. Their educational background enables Broker and Agent to handle negotiations and contracts to secure the best deal for their customer.
The services of Broker and Agent are free for the buyer; it is the seller who is responsible for the commission which will be split between the listing and the selling Broker, who in turn will pay the Agent’s portion of the commission after the deal has been closed.
Please see below for our future topics:
- One Hand and one Hand only: selling – buying – property management – vacation rental services √
- Broker, Real Estate Agent – what do all those titles really mean? √
- Buying a house: Should we build from scratch or buy an existing home?
- Vacation home: What does the home need to be a success?
- Vacation home inside and out: What features do we need?
- Property Management: Taking care of your income property
- Money makes the World go round
- Advertisement: How to get renters
- Cost and Taxes
- Be organized – stick to the plan but have one first!
- Vacation home: Taking care of the guests
- Legal and not so legal things in the renal business
- Service and Advise
(c) All the articles in this blog were written by Sabrina and Stephan Sanford in German and English language and may not be used for any commercial or private purposes in full or part without our permission.
This post is also available in: German