Real estate agents are licensed professionals who get compensated for representing buyers and sellers in real estate transactions. They typically work on commission, and can either act independently or through a brokerage firm or other professional with more experience and a specialist license. Real estate agents can specialize in commercial or residential property.

Depending on who they represent, real estate agents can have different job duties. For example, a buyer’s agent will help their client find properties that match their price range and other criteria such as location. They also help with the negotiation process and may even have a role in finding mortgage lenders and home inspection services.

A listing agent, on the other hand, will advise their clients on how to prepare a home for sale and recommend any last-minute improvements that could boost the selling price. They’ll also list the property with relevant real estate listings and promote it through social media and other advertising channels.

Both types of real estate agents can help with the closing process, ensuring that all paperwork is properly filed and that both parties comply with local laws and regulations regarding the transfer of property ownership. They can also provide recommendations for other services such as lawyers, contractors and mortgage brokers.

To become a real estate agent, you’ll need to complete pre-licensing courses and then take your state’s licensing exam. Some states require background checks, while others have minimum education and training requirements. In most cases, you’ll need to pass the exam with a 75% or higher score in order to get your license. Also read:

Most real estate agents are required to obtain a broker’s license if they want to be considered for higher-level positions at brokerage firms or other companies that offer more career opportunities and benefits. The broker’s license is a significant accomplishment, and shows that you have the additional skills and expertise needed to manage more complicated real estate transactions.

Regardless of their specialty, all real estate agents should be familiar with the local housing market and have extensive knowledge about buying and selling homes. They should also understand the nuances of the real estate process, including local and federal regulations. A good real estate agent will be able to explain the process in detail and answer any questions you might have.

In addition, a good real estate agent will have a strong network of fellow professionals in the industry. This can be beneficial when assisting with real estate transactions, as it allows them to access information that isn’t available to the public. This information may include details about the condition of a property, which can be especially helpful when negotiating prices or conducting home inspections. This information can also save you time and money by avoiding potential complications down the road.