What is The Difference Between Realtor and Real Estate Agent

The terms “real estate agent” and “Realtor” are often used interchangeably, but there is a key difference between the two. A real estate agent is a licensed professional who helps clients buy, sell, and lease property. A Realtor is a real estate agent who is also a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

Realtors vs. Real Estate Agents key differences

CharacteristicRealtorReal estate agent
Membership in NARYesNo
Adherence to NAR’s code of ethicsYesNo
Additional training and education requirementsNoneNone
Licensing requirementsYesYes

Key Steps and Requirements to Become a Realtor

To become a Realtor, an agent must meet certain requirements, including:

  • Having a valid real estate license
  • Completing at least 45 hours of pre-licensing education
  • Passing a state-approved real estate exam
  • Joining a local board of Realtors
  • Adhering to the NAR’s Code of Ethics

Why Choose a Realtor?

There are many reasons to choose a Realtor when buying, selling, or renting real estate. Here are a few of the most important benefits:

  • Expertise: Realtors have the knowledge and experience to help you make informed decisions about your real estate transaction. They can explain complex contracts, negotiate on your behalf, and help you avoid potential pitfalls.
  • Access to a wide range of listings: Realtors have access to the MLS, which is a database of all active listings in a particular area. This gives you a much wider selection of properties to choose from than if you were searching on your own.
  • Marketing expertise: If you are selling your home, a Realtor can help you market it to the right buyers. They will develop a marketing plan, list your home on the MLS, and show it to potential buyers.
  • Negotiation skills: Realtors are skilled negotiators. They can help you get the best possible price for your home when buying or selling.
  • Local knowledge: Realtors have in-depth knowledge of the local real estate market. They can help you find the right property in the right area for your needs and budget.
  • Professionalism: Realtors are held to a high standard of professionalism. They are required to adhere to a code of ethics and to provide their clients with honest and ethical service.

Here are some specific examples of how a Realtor can help you:

  • Buyers: A Realtor can help you find the right home for your needs and budget. They can also help you pre-qualify for a mortgage and negotiate the best price for your new home.
  • Sellers: A Realtor can help you price your home competitively and market it to potential buyers. They can also help you negotiate offers and close the sale on your home.
  • Landlords: A Realtor can help you find qualified tenants for your rental property. They can also help you manage your rental property and resolve any disputes with your tenants.

How to Find a Good Realtor

  • Ask for referrals from friends, family, and colleagues. Word-of-mouth is often the best way to find a good Realtor. Ask people you know if they have had any positive experiences working with a Realtor, and get their recommendations.
  • Look for Realtors who are experienced and knowledgeable about your local market. You can find Realtors in your area by searching online or by contacting your local real estate board. Once you have a list of potential Realtors, interview them to learn more about their experience and knowledge.
  • Read online reviews of Realtors. This is a good way to get a sense of what other people have thought of working with different Realtors. You can find reviews on websites like Zillow, Trulia, and Yelp.
  • Make sure the Realtor is licensed and insured. You can check the license status of a Realtor by contacting your state’s real estate board. You should also make sure the Realtor is insured in case of any problems during the real estate transaction.
  • Interview several Realtors before making a decision. This will give you a chance to compare their experience, knowledge, and personalities to find the best one for you.

Here are some questions you can ask potential Realtors during your interviews:

  • How long have you been a Realtor?
  • What is your experience working with buyers, sellers, or renters in my area?
  • What is your marketing plan for selling my home?
  • What is your commission rate?
  • What are your communication preferences?
  • Can you provide me with references from past clients?

It is also important to trust your gut instinct. If you feel comfortable with a Realtor and believe that they have your best interests at heart, then they are likely a good fit for you.

Broker Vs Realtor

A real estate agent is a licensed professional assisting in buying and selling commercial and residential properties. They can elevate their status by becoming a Realtor, which involves becoming an active, dues-paying member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). While both real estate agents and Realtors perform similar roles in property transactions, the key distinction lies in the Realtor’s membership in the NAR, which holds them to specific professional standards and duties.


Whether you are buying, selling, or leasing property, it is important to choose a qualified professional to help you. A Realtor is a good choice for those who want to work with an agent who is committed to upholding high ethical standards and who has access to the NAR’s resources.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is an estate agent a realtor?

In the United States, yes, an estate agent is a realtor if they are a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). However, the term “realtor” is also used interchangeably with “real estate agent” in many other countries, including the United Kingdom.

What is the difference between a realtor and a real estate agent in Ontario?

In Ontario, Canada, all real estate agents must be registered with the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO). Real estate agents who are members of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) are also realtors. However, not all real estate agents in Ontario are members of CREA.

What is the difference between a property agent and a real estate agent?

A property agent is typically a representative of the landlord or property owner, while a real estate agent can represent either the buyer or the seller. Property agents are often responsible for finding tenants for rental properties, while real estate agents can help clients buy or sell any type of property, including residential, commercial, and industrial properties.

Who is called a realtor?

A realtor is a real estate agent who is a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Realtors must adhere to the NAR’s Code of Ethics, which is a set of professional standards that protect consumers.

What is a realtor in the UK called?

In the UK, realtors are called estate agents. Estate agents are licensed professionals who help clients buy, sell, and rent property.

Is realtor British or American?

The term “realtor” is primarily used in the United States. However, the term is also used in some other countries, such as Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

What is a realtor in USA?

A realtor in the USA is a real estate agent who is a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Realtors must adhere to the NAR’s Code of Ethics, which is a set of professional standards that protect consumers.

Also Read


Razib is a skilled writer with 5 years of experience specializing in technology, finance, automotive and real estate. A BBA graduate from 2014, Razib's passion for these industries shines through in his informative and engaging content. His ability to break down complex topics and stay current on the latest trends makes him a valuable resource for readers seeking to understand these dynamic fields.

Related Articles