Real Estate Agent, Broker, Adviser, Or Attorney | Which Do You Need?
The world of real estate can be confusing for those who do not work in the field every day. There are so many terms to know and players to watch that it can be overwhelming. Let's face it, the average American buys only three to four houses over the course of a lifetime. That does not equate to a lot of experience with the real estate buying and selling process. You need help, but from who?
Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent is a licensed professional that can help you buy or sell real estate. Typically they are licensed for either residential real estate or commercial. There is considerable difference between the two fields and most agents stick to one or the other.
Residential real estate agents are further broken down into two types. A buyer's agent works exclusively for the buyer, helping them find a home that meets their needs and negotiating the best offer on their behalf. A seller's agent, or listing agent, is responsible for listing the property and selling it for the best price for the homeowners.
All real estate agents, commercial and residential, are licensed through their state of residence and most are also licensed through NAR, the National Association of Realtors. This allows them to use the official title Realtor, with a capital R.
Real Estate Broker
A real estate broker is a real estate agent that has many years of experience and has obtained a broker's license. A broker's license simply means that they have the knowledge, experience, and skills to operate a real estate office or franchise location. They are not 'the boss' as Realtors are independent contractors, but they are a good source for you to contact if you are having difficulty with your transaction or need a referral to a real estate agent within their organization. Some brokers work with clients while managing the branch office, while others simply focus their time on managing everything and training new agents.
Real Estate Adviser
A real estate advisor, or real estate consultant, is a person who provides advise, analysis, and research on the real estate trends in their area. The typical clients that hire a real estate adviser are real estate developers, investors, and lending institutions. They rely on the expertise of real estate advisers before taking on large projects, like a new strip mall or master-planned community project. A real estate adviser may hold a real estate license, a broker's license, or both, depending on the state's requirements. To learn about what a real state advisor does, contact a real estate advisor company near you, such as Allodium Realty Advisors.
Real Estate Attorney
Some states require that you involve a real estate attorney in your home purchase or sale. This does not mean that the attorney shows you houses to buy, but rather they look over the documents to guarantee accuracy. You may also need to hire a real estate attorney if you are selling the home of a deceased family member or want to put the home of an elderly family member in a living trust. Hiring a real estate attorney is a way to have a lawyer double check all the documents.
Whether you need a real estate agent, broker, adviser, or attorney depends on your individual needs and situation.