Of course, organizing and negotiating real estate transactions are the basic things that a real estate broker does. On top of that, they do write contracts and supervise sales as well as purchases of homes, land, and commercial properties.
These are the daily responsibilities of the licensed person. But you might get a little confused about real estate agents and brokers.
Real estate agents are like a lower level of agents who can be hired by brokers to work as a team under their supervision because they have obtained higher-level licenses than real estate agents. So, you got that there are various levels of real estate agents. Right?
What a Real Estate Agent Does: Every real estate agent is required to hold a broker’s license in some states. And, if you want to employ agents or other brokers to work under you, you must obtain another higher-level license even if you have an independent broker license.
If agents are not adequately trained and supervised, there may be significant risk involved, especially with regard to fair housing and environmental regulations. Brokers who permit agents to commit serious errors may be held accountable for the resulting financial and legal penalties too.
Guess, this is also not an easy job to do.
However, website setup seems to be a common practice for agents. And, to ensure there are no legal violations, the supervising broker routinely reviews the websites of their agents.
Now, let’s get into the real deal. Real estate agents, as individual license holders, could work for either selling the property or buying them. Thus, their roles and responsibilities also change a little bit as their representative client. Like they can either be sellers’ representatives or buyers.
Real Estate Agents Representing Sellers
While a broker also handles transactions for sellers, an agent acting on their behalf will frequently handle the following tasks:
- Putting up a local MLS, or multiple listing service, for the purpose of selling homes
- Distributing the MLS listings to other broker members to help sell the property
- Distributing the listing commission to effective buyer brokers
- Assisting the homeowner in getting ready to list and show their house
- Supervising the showing and providing sellers with feedback and results
- Offering any proposals to the seller for consideration
- Assisting the seller in negotiations so they can attempt to sign a purchase agreement with a buyer
- Coordinating the transaction process on behalf of the seller
- Delivering and outlining transaction items, disclosures, and documents
- Assisting the seller through the closing and their departure from the house
Working with Buyers
Customers frequently inquire, “Will the same agent represents both a buyer and a seller in a real estate transaction?” Let’s clear this up before discussing real estate agents who are working on behalf of buyers.
The MLS permits any additional brokerage or agent to introduce a buyer who submits an offer. Therefore, even though they are permitted to represent both parties in a transaction, agents typically only represent the seller or the buyer.
The vast majority of homeowners who decide they want to sell their homes will contact a real estate brokerage to work with a representative to list their homes on the nearby Multiple Listing Service (MLS).
For a listing price, ascertain the home’s value in the current market. The following tasks and activities will be carried out by the real estate agent when listing a house:
- Establish the home’s worth in the current market to determine the listing price.
- Help the homeowner prepare their house for sale and showings.
- Add the property to the MLS database.
- Promote the property to other MLS brokerage members and agents.
- Advertise the house online, in print, and in other forms of traditional media.
- organize home showings and/or keep watch over them.
- Inform the seller of any interest and comments made by prospective buyers after viewing the house.
- Help the seller negotiate the price they want when a buyer makes an offer so that a purchase agreement is signed.
- Plan the entire transaction, from contract signing to closing, including the scheduling of inspections, preparation of closing materials, and other items.
Here are a few additional responsibilities and activities of a buyer’s agent:
- Assist the buyers in finding and viewing properties that fit their criteria.
- Support them in getting a mortgage.
- Inform them of the neighborhood, the state of the market, and whether you think the price of the homes you’re interested in is fair or not.
- Develop the initial offer in a purchase agreement with them.
- Participate with them in discussions and counteroffers with the seller(s).
- Coordinate the buyer’s side of the transaction once a purchase agreement has been signed.
- Arrange for the coordination and scheduling of inspections, appraisals, and other transaction-related activities.
- Deliver and explain all paperwork, including title insurance and deeds.
- Work closely with them to complete the closing and obtain their keys.
When discussing the changes brought about by the Internet, real estate agents are frequently compared to travel agents, but they do add value to the transaction process. Because of the Internet, they may be less valuable in terms of where homes are located, but assisting buyers and sellers in finding value and navigating the process is a valuable service.
Relationship between Brokers and Supervising Agents
The majority or all of the brokerage transactions are handled by a broker’s agents when they are authorized to do so (also known as a supervising or managing broker). The broker has the following duties in relation to overseeing agents:
- Verifies that all brokerage agents have active licenses
- Instructs, trains, or supplies agents with training materials
- And are in charge of overseeing agent conduct, performance, and adherence to the law.
- Gives agents some services and marketing resources.
- Frequently maintains a brokerage website for an agent marketing
Highest-level state-licensed real estate brokers are responsible for setting industry standards of practice, upholding high standards of client/customer service, and adhering to all applicable state real estate laws.