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What is the Difference Between a Realtor and a Real Estate Agent?

If you needed a doctor, you’d go to someone who is a doctor. If you needed a car mechanic, you’d find a professional with this title. Most professions and industries are like this. That is why it can be confusing as you look for a real estate professional to handle either buying or selling your home and you see a few different choices. Some people call themselves a Realtor, while others refer to themselves only as a real estate agent. Is there a difference? Does this difference matter? 

Realtor vs Real Estate Agent

The short answer to your question is yes, there is a difference in these two titles. In California and throughout the United States, someone must be an active member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) to qualify as a Realtor. Realtors have to go through coursework, pass the licensing exam, and agree to adhere to NAR’s code of ethics in order to earn this prestigious title. This code of ethics requires that Realtors put their clients’ interests above their own. This is why these professionals are so sought after. According to Investopedia, anyone who wants to become a Realtor must meet four requirements:

#1 Have a valid and active real estate license

#2 Be actively engaged in the real estate business

#3 Not have a record of official sanctions involving unprofessional conduct

#4 Not have filed for any recent or pending bankruptcy

A real estate agent is someone who helps people buy or sell their property. This person can choose to specialize in being a buyers’ agent or a listing agent. Similar to Realtors, real estate agents need to take some coursework before they are licensed. In the state of California, they need 135 hours of license coursework.

The main differences between the two are the hours of coursework they have undergone and the code of ethics they pledge to adhere to. Realtors hold a higher standard as they are governed by the rules set forth by NAR. 

Find a Realtor in Danville, CA

When you are ready to buy or sell a home, you’ll want some help. So who should you hire? Can you find a new home or sell your current house with a real estate agent instead of a Realtor? Yes. Do you want to? That is a question you’ll need to answer on your own. If you want someone who is the best of the best, with the documentation to prove it, you’re looking for a Realtor and nothing less.

For those in Danville, the Realtors you’re looking for are part of the Frazzano Tse Team! We are ranked #1 in combined total sales volume for the entire MLS in Contra Costa and Alameda Counties since 2009. Together, our team has over 50+ years of experience in real estate, representing all property types and price-points throughout the Danville area.