Most agents work on behalf of sellers and are ethically bound to provide loyalty in obtaining the best offer possible on seller’s property.
Brokers may act as agents as well as oversee the work of other agents. All real estate agents work under the direction of a more experienced broker.
A small amount of agents, known as buyers agents, work on behalf of individuals who are looking to purchase property. These agents owe no loyalty to the seller and may attempt to negotiate a better deal and lower price for the buyers.
Real Estate Jobs Require Detailed Local Knowledge
Agents and brokers are required to maintain up to date information about the real estate market, particularly in the geographical area in which they reside. They also need to know about financing terms, zoning laws and how to perform complex real estate related mathematical equations.
Hours of Work in Real Estate Jobs
Real estate agents and brokers are almost always considered to be contractors and as such are self-employed. Individuals working in real estate are paid primarily on a commission-only basis.
Real estate agents and brokers do not work typical 8 hour days; instead they may work many late evenings as well as weekend and possible holiday work.
Agents spend most of their time doing the following activities:
- Convincing sellers to sign contracts
- Listing their property for sale with the agent’s real estate firm
- Showing properties to prospective buyers
- Acting as a facilitator between buyers and lenders
Agents may also spend a portion of their time working on title research in order to prove a legitimate chain of title.
Real Estate Jobs – Working Conditions
Working conditions for individuals employed in real estate vary and often change on a daily basis. On any given day an agent or broker may be required to visit a commercial property, residential home or even traipse through wooded lots and acreage.
Outlook for Real Estate Careers
The real estate industry is very dependent upon the health of the economy and local conditions. Many agents and brokers may do very well financially in one year and be forced to look for work elsewhere or take on a second job the following year.
As a result, agents tend to work more than one job at given times during their career, quit to seek different work altogether, or fluctuate in and out of real estate jobs as the market fluctuates.
Employment Prospects for Real Estate Jobs
While it is relatively easy to obtain a position in real estate with the proper credentials. Financial prospects for real estate jobs such as agents and brokers are not expected to grow very quickly in the coming years.
More individuals are using computer databases in order to search for real estate and an increasing number of sellers are starting to prefer selling their properties without assistance from an agent or broker.
Job Search for Real Estate Jobs
Employment prospects for real estate jobs are seldom advertised in classifieds because they are relatively easy to obtain, provided the candidate meets necessary licensure and education requirements.
Job seekers interested in a career in real estate should check with the agency governing real estate licensure in their state as well as research several real estate firms, both independent and franchised.
Real Estate Jobs – Cover Letters
Brokers generally look to hire prospective agents who are professional, friendly, outgoing and can be aggressive when the situation warrants it. Real estate is a highly competitive field with fortunes made and lost based on the personality and hard-hitting attitude of the agent.
Cover letters should indicate the competitive nature of the job seeker while reflecting a commitment to providing excellent customer service.
Resumes for Real Estate Jobs
Real estate agents and brokers are usually more successful when they are significantly involved in community associations and activities as well as have strong ties to the community through family.
Prior experience and knowledge in the fields of finance, marketing, economics and legal matters are highly desirable. Any related memberships and experience should be highlighted on real estate resumes.
Real Estate Jobs – Training & Qualifications
Every state within the US requires a license to be obtained by both real estate agents and brokers. Licensure requirements vary from state to state, however there is usually a minimum amount of continuing education required in addition to a high school diploma or general equivalency diploma.
The amount of instruction required per state varies, but is usually around 30 to 60 hours. Successful candidates must also pass a comprehensive examination that generally deals with such topics as real estate mathematics, ethics and financing information.
Real Estate Jobs
Requirements for brokers are slightly more exhaustive usually requiring anywhere between 60 to 90 hours of continuing education instruction and a requisite amount of hands on experience, varying between 1 to 3 years.
Brokers and agents alike are required to renew their licenses, usually every two years. There is no examination required for this license renewal, provided the agent or broker meets certain minimum standards, such as additional continuing education.