Degree Programs For Real Estate Agents : Online And Campus Schools

Career Information

Real Estate Brokers and Agents: Career, Salary and Education Information

Career Profile: What do Real Estate Brokers and Agents do?
Real estate brokers and agents smooth out the stressful process of buying a house. These property professionals use their skills to match prospective buyers with new homes, condos, business space, and land. Brokers and agents can choose to specialize in one of the aforementioned property types or they can limit their business to a specific location.

The business side of the real estate business can be complex and real estate brokers and agents are trained to navigate the contracts, negotiations, and legal requirements of every sale. They can help the client order an inspection on the property, offer information on local utilities, and otherwise meet the particular requirements of their clients.

A Day in the Life of Real Estate Brokers and Agents
While increases in technology allow many real estate brokers and agents to work from home, many spend time away from the desk, meeting and showing property to clients, visiting prospective homes, and researching the market.

Another tradeoff with working from home is that many real estate brokers and agents log more than a 40-hour work week. They are often required to work around their clients' schedules, in the evening and on weekends. Business during the winter season is often slower and agents and brokers have more freedom to arrange their schedule to suit their desire for time off.

Real Estate Brokers and Agents Training and Education
Licensure is required for real estate brokers and agents in every state. Training typically leads to an associate's or bachelor's degree, though some programs offer graduate degrees in the field. The actual license examination is more rigorous for brokers than it is for real estate agents, and includes questions about laws and transactions specific to the field.

Coursework in real estate brokers and agent training programs can be completed via traditional or online schooling and includes real estate law, market analysis, real estate development, housing economics, and real estate finance and investments. Students can also take elective courses to further their focus in urban development, green buildings, community development, and other topics.

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Real Estate Brokers and Agents Employment & Outlook
Real estate sales agents held the majority of all careers for real estate brokers and agents. Altogether, the industry employed 564,000 nationwide in 2006, with many brokers and agents working part-time to supplement income from other careers. Over half of all real estate brokers and agents are self-employed, making it an attractive career choice for those who want to set their own hours.

Outlook for the career is expected to align with national trends--about 60,000 careers in total are expected to be added to the profession through 2016.

Real Estate Brokers and Agents Salary
Economic trends have a large impact on earnings and fewer new homeowners enter the market during downswing periods. Mean annual wages for real estate brokers was $79,800 in 2007, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That same year, real estate sales agents saw mean annual earnings of $55,090.

Sources
Bureau of Labor Statistics, Real Estate Brokers and Sales Agents
Portland State Center for Real Estate