Real Estate Agent – Is a licensed professional who assists in the buying and selling of properties.  A Real Estate Agent can list homes for sale, help buyers find homes, advertise and help an owner rent a property or find a property for a tenant to rent.

A state exam must be passed after taking all required coursework.  Each state has its own criteria.  Most states require 30-90 hours of coursework.  This license usually requires renewal every one to two years and there is a continuing education requirement.

Realtor – Is in the house selling and buying business just like a Real Estate Agent.  However, a Realtor has different certification from a Real Estate Agent.  A Realtor is an active member of the National Association of Realtors.  A person qualified to be called a Realtor has:  a real estate license; has been accepted as a member to the NAR; and has an immaculate professional conduct record.  All Realtors must adhere to an extensive Code of Ethics.  Only ½ of all Real Estate Agents are certified Realtors.

To become a Realtor you must join your local NAR, pay your dues, pass an online course, adhere to the NAR’s standards and retake the online course every 4 years.

Broker (Real Estate Broker) – A Broker must take coursework to pass a broker’s licensing exam.  Course work and tests vary state to state.  A Broker will be trained in legal issues, operating brokerages, investments, construction and property management.  In some states Real Estate Agents are often required to practice for several years before qualifying to become a Broker.  Brokers generally manage real estate firms reviewing contracts and legalities.

Key Points:

  • 1A real estate agent and a realtor have different certifications for their jobs.
  • 2You need to pass a state exam to become a real estate agent.
  • 3You can take approved courses to become a rel estate agent online.

A Realtor is a real estate agent who is an active member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR).