November 29, 2021

November 29, 2021

What is a Real Estate Broker?

What's a real estate broker, and how do they differ from real estate agents and realtors?

There are numerous people involved during real estate transactions. If you’re planning to buy or sell your home, you may be working with a real estate broker. Some people may use the term real estate agent, broker, and realtor interchangeably. While they are all industry experts who are licensed to help you achieve your goals with your property, they are distinct from each other.

But what is a real estate broker? In this post, we explore what their role and responsibilities are. We also look into how they differ from the other key individuals in a real estate transaction.

What is a Real Estate Broker?

A real estate broker is a real estate agent who continues their education and training to receive a broker license. They can work independently, establish their own brokerage, or hire real estate agents to work under their supervision. The exact regulations for this can vary depending on the state, but most will have similar requirements. 

What Does a Real Estate Broker Do?

Real estate brokers do similar things as agents. They also arrange and negotiate real estate transactions, oversee transactions for sales, purchase homes, land, and commercial properties, and write contracts.

Brokers can work either for property sellers or buyers.

When working for a seller, a real estate broker can:

  • Advise clients on offers and provisions.
  • Communicate with sellers on their offers.
  • Deliver and explain disclosures, documents, and transaction items.
  • Determine the market value of the clients’ properties.
  • Guide sellers in negotiating offers to close the best possible deal.
  • Help sellers prepare their homes for listings and showing.
  • List and advertise the property for sale.
  • Submit all offers to the seller for consideration.
  • Supervise showings with prospective buyers.
  • Work with clients through the closing and their move-out.

On the other hand, when working for a buyer, a real estate broker’s responsibilities include:

  • Assisting buyers with any issues through closing and taking possession.
  • Conducting negotiations with the seller (or through their agent/broker).
  • Coordinating and helping buyers when viewing properties.
  • Delivering and explaining documents in the transaction process.
  • Looking for properties that match the clients’ price range and criteria.
  • Managing inspections and negotiating repairs on behalf of the buyer.
  • Preparing initial offer letters and purchase agreements.
  • Helping buyers with any issues leading up to the closing.

In addition, real estate brokers can fall under one of three main types of real estate brokers, each with certain responsibilities:

  1. Associate brokers - They have broker licenses but they work under another broker and do not supervise other agents.
  2. Managing brokers - They oversee transactions and daily operations in the office, hire and train new agents, and manage the administrative staff.
  3. Principal/designated brokers - They supervise real estate agents to ensure compliance with state and national real estate laws.
real estate broker holding sold sign

How to Become a Real Estate Broker

Similar to becoming a real estate agent in Las Vegas, there are some rules to follow to become  a licensed real estate broker in the state. 

According to the Nevada Real Estate Commission, you must meet the following general requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have an active license as a full-time real estate salesperson for at least the last two of the four years prior to the application
  • Complete hours of required education
  • 45 hours of Real Estate Principles
  • 45 hours of Real Estate Law
  • 45 hours of Real Estate Appraisal
  • 45 hours of Broker Management Course
  • 15 college credits in real estate-related courses (accounting, business, economics, finance, management, marketing)
  • 37 college level units 
  • Confidential financial statement
  • Pass a broker’s exam

You can review the full list of requirements at the NV Real Estate Division website.

How Does a Real Estate Broker Differ from an Agent and Realtor?

There are other titles of real estate professionals you’ve maybe encountered throughout your house buying and selling process — such as a real estate agent and realtor.

A real estate agent, also called real estate associate, is a licensed salesperson tasked to help people buy, sell, or rent their properties. Similar to a real estate broker, they can organize transactions, carry offers and counteroffers, and guide clients through the paperwork. They help set listing prices, suggest home updates to increase its value, assist in home staging, and advertise the property. They also negotiate costs, help prepare relevant documents, and ensure their clients comply with all requirements.

The primary difference between a real estate broker and an agent is that the latter can’t work independently. They need to be employed by the broker and work under their supervision.

On the other hand, a realtor is an industry professional who is a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). They can also be part of state or local trade associations. They subscribe to an extensive code of ethics and pay annual membership dues.

A realtor can be an independent contractor who helps people buy, sell, or rent their homes. They do most of the back-end work to make a real estate transaction flow smoothly. Agents and brokers can specialize in different areas and take extra steps to become realtors. Essentially, all realtors are agents and brokers, but not all agents or brokers can be realtors.

The team behind your real estate journey might consist of a few different professionals. Make sure they’re qualified, experienced, and know your area thoroughly.

Are you looking to buy or sell a home in Vegas? Contact The Brendan King Group to learn how we can make that happen.

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