Realtor vs. Real Estate Agent — What’s the Difference?

Most people use the term Realtor and Real estate agent interchangeably, but they are not the same. Both professionals must have a  license to sell real estate, but there are some differences. Not every real estate agent is a Realtor.

What’s the Difference Between a Realtor and an Agent?


A Realtor works as a commercial or real estate broker, property manager, salesperson, appraiser, or counselor. In the United States, one should be an active member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) to qualify as one. Realtors must undergo some coursework, qualify for the licensing exam, and agree to NAR’s code of ethics.


They must qualify for agent licensing requirements in their state

Must additionally pass the NAR Code of Ethics course

Members of the National Association of Realtors members

Real estate agent

A real estate agent is one who helps people to buy or sell their commercial or residential property. They have the right to specialize in being a listing agent or a buyer’s agent. The Buyer’s agent will focus on helping the owners search and help the sellers to list their property. The professional real estate agent must pass the exams and get a license.

A good real estate agent should have a piece of deep knowledge of the local laws as well as current trends in the property markets. They are the intermediary between the seller and buyer, negotiations are a key part of any real estate agent’s work.


Must pass agent licensing requirements in their state

No need to qualify for any additional requirements

Are not NAR members

What are the different types of real estate agents?

Seller’s agent

A seller’s agent represents the people who wish to sell the property.

They help to,

Show your property to potential buyers

Help you stage your property

Negotiate with the buyers

List your property on multiple marketing platforms

Buyer’s agent

Negotiating for the best price on your behalf

Meeting and conferring with professionals

Handling paperwork

Help you get your dream property

Rental agent

They do all the duties related to managing a rental property. Also will help you find potential tenants, and provide services to tenants.

No matter who you choose, both of them should be able to help you throughout the process of buying or selling your property.