Real estate agents help buyers and sellers navigate the home-buying and -selling

process. They’re also go-betweens during negotiations and double-check all

paperwork before closing to ensure nothing slips through the cracks that could delay

or cost either party.

Agents work on commission, but they must first complete prelicensing training and

pass a licensing exam. They also juggle multiple tasks on any given day.



Most real estate agents work as independent contractors, earning a commission on

each sale. On a typical day, agents balance administrative duties and income producing


Sellers often hire real estate agents to help them sell their homes. These agents,

who are also known as listing agents, set the selling price for a home, suggest

property updates that could increase the home’s value and market it through the

MLS database and other channels. They also show the house to potential buyers and

manage the closing process.


When showing homes to buyers, agents must be able to screen out time-wasters like

lookie-loos and lowballers. They also need to verify that buyers are preapproved for

a mortgage and can afford the home they’re interested in buying. To do this, agents

ask for financial documents and review them to see if any problems may arise. They

also negotiate sales prices, closing costs and other fees with buyers and sellers.



A real estate agent often works with buyers to help them navigate the buying

process. They will provide expertise and insight based on industry experience to

make sure their client is fully informed and ready to make sound decisions.


For example, a skilled agent will only show homes to buyers that have been preapproved

for mortgage financing. This ensures that the homebuyers can afford the

property and avoids wasted time for all involved. It is easy for homebuyers to lose

mortgage approval if significant changes occur, so your agent will monitor buyer

progress and work diligently to keep everything on track. Read more


Before working with a buyer, your agent will likely ask you to sign a contract called a

buyer agency agreement. This will define the responsibilities of both parties and

specify how long you are committed to working with this agent.



Real estate agents spend a great deal of time networking to find buyers and sellers.

They also negotiate on behalf of clients. It’s important to become a skilled

negotiator, as client satisfaction is key to a successful career.

In addition to negotiating price, agents must help buyers understand the market and

their financial options. They are often tasked with explaining complex issues like

financing, property taxes and escrow procedures.


During negotiations, it’s important to remain calm and focused. Getting emotional

during the bargaining process can derail the deal. It’s also a good idea to have a

backup plan. This will show the other party that you’re serious about closing the deal

and that you have a solid game plan in case the initial proposal falls through.

During the negotiation process, an agent must keep a close eye on their commission

rate. This is another area where a skilled negotiator can make big gains for their




In some cases, real estate agents must obtain the approval of a broker for larger

transaction decisions. This is often the case when a buyer is financing the purchase

of property with a loan.

Throughout the process, real estate agents act as go-betweens for their clients. They

often convey offers and counteroffers, facilitate home and pest inspections and help

their clients find professionals to perform the necessary services.


Most real estate agents work on commission, so they are highly motivated to do

their best to close the deal as quickly and thoroughly as possible. They are also

required to register with their state’s licensing board and have a clean record free of

any disciplinary actions. This is important because consumers often turn to real

estate agents to guide them through the most significant financial and emotional

investment of their lives. When they do, it’s essential that the experience is positive

and stress-free. This is why many people ask for testimonials and references from

previous customers when choosing an agent.

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