Nick Ray

The real estate market can be complex and difficult to navigate without prior experience. That’s why most home buyers and real estate investors work with a real estate agent to ensure they get the best deal possible. However, with such a wide variety of real estate for sale comes a wide variety of real estate agents. And, it can often be just as difficult to determine the right real estate agents for your needs as it can be to understand the real estate market itself. If you’re looking for a real estate agent to help you with the purchase your first home or another crucial real estate investment, read on to learn about the different types of real estate agents available to you and discover which is best for your needs.

The Different Kinds of Real Estate Agents

To understand which real estate agent will be the most useful to you in your upcoming real estate venture, it is helpful to first know the different kinds of real estate agents available to you and which agents are best matched to the type of real estate transaction you are hoping to complete. There are 3 main types of real estate agents:

  • Associate Broker
  • Realtor
  • Real Estate Broker

Associate Broker

To become a Real Estate Broker, a real estate agent must normally have held their real estate agent's licence for several years, taken additional courses, and passed a more difficult exams than is required of a Realtor. However, in some states, a 4-year college degree may be substituted for the years of experience and additional courses generally required of a real estate broker. In these cases, or for experienced brokers who would prefer not to sponsor other real estate agents, a real estate broker may choose to work under another broker, which earns them the title of Associate broker. While an associate broker may have fewer years experience than the broker, they are likely to have far more knowledge than the average real estate agent, making them a better choice for assisting you with more complex transactions involving multiple properties and commercial or industrial land.


A Realtor is a licensed professionals who has taken the necessary classes, passed their state's license exam, and belongs to the National Association of Realtors. For single property purchases of residential land or real estate, a licensed Realtor might make an excellent choice when deciding between the various types of Real Estate Agents. Realtor’s will be able to assist you by performing a Comparative Market Analysis to ensure you are getting the best deal possible, and when you are ready to either buy or sell, they can also help you fill out and file the appropriate paperwork to ensure your transaction is in accordance with the local laws.

Real Estate Broker

Real Estate Brokers are often the most experienced real estate professionals and can assist you with any of the following services in realtion to your upcoming real estate transaction:

  • Broker's Price Opinion — estimate of a property's value or potential selling price
  • Real estate appraisal — in most states, only if the broker is also licensed as an appraiser.
  • Exposure — Marketing the real property to prospective buyers.
  • Facilitating a Purchase — guiding a buyer through the process.
  • Facilitating a Sale — guiding a seller through the selling process.
  • FSBO document preparation — preparing necessary paperwork for "For Sale By Owner" sellers.
  • Home Selling Kits — guides advising how to market and sell a property.
  • Hourly Consulting for a fee, based on the client's needs.
  • Leasing for a fee or percentage of the gross lease value.
  • Property Management
  • Exchanging property.
  • Auctioning property.
  • Preparing contracts and leases. (not in all states)

A Real Estate Broker also has the ability to assist your business entity as well as aid you in your personal affairs. Hiring a Real Estate Broker might make sense if you are seeking to complete a highly complicated transaction, either for yourself or for your business.

Finding Your Real Estate Agent

Now that you know the different kinds of real estate agents that are available to you, you can make an informed and educated decision about which kind will be best for your needs.


Related Article