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Posted by Payman Shilian on October 4, 2022
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West LA & Westwood Real Estate Market

WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WESTWOOD BROKER & AGENT

There are a lot of misconceptions about what it means to be a Westwood broker. For example, some people think that real estate brokers are the same as real estate agents, but this is not always the case. There are some significant distinctions between these two professions, and it’s essential to understand them before you decide which one is right for you.

Westwood Agent

Real estate agents are licensed to help people buy, sell, and rent real estate. Their primary responsibility is to connect buyers and sellers, and they are paid a commission from the sale price. The requirements to become a real estate agent may vary from state to state. Generally, a person must be over 18, complete the state-required pre-licensing courses and pass the state test, complete a background check, and then hang your license with a real estate broker.

Real estate agents are responsible for organizing transactions between buyers and sellers and between owners and renters. They carry offers and counteroffers between both parties, along with any questions or concerns they may have. Guiding clients through the process of filling out paperwork is also essential for real estate agents, as well as making clients fully aware of any requirements needed to complete a transaction, such as home inspections, moving dates, and important dates to note during the escrow period.

Agents who represent buyers are buyer’s agents and find properties that match the buyer’s requirements and price range and help arrange appraisals, and inspections, negotiate terms and help prepare and submit the necessary documents.

Agents representing the sellers are listing agents; they help set listing prices and suggest home updates that will help the home value, help with the home staging, and market the home via the MLS and other ways. Like buyer agents, listing agents negotiate sales prices, closing costs, and additional fees and help prepare and submit the necessary documents.

Real Estate Agents work for brokers or agencies and receive a commission. The percentage is from the sale price, which is typically between 5% and 6%. But the agent does not walk away with the entire commission, as it is divided between the listing, the buyer’s agent, and the brokers who employ them. For example, a home sells for 1 million dollars, and the commission paid is 6% which is $60,000. That will be $30,000 to the buyer’s agent and $30,000 to the listing agent. However, from that $30,000, the agent still must pay his commission split to the broker, which may vary from broker to broker; let’s say, for this example, it’s 20%. That means the $30,000 the buyers and listing agents have received; they must pay $6,000 to their broker, which means they are taking home $24,000.

Westwood Broker

To become a Westwood broker, you must have an active license for two years minimum in California, complete a few extra classes, and pass a more intense state test than the real estate agent state exam. Unlike agents, real estate brokers can work independently, start their brokerage, and hire other agents to work with them. There are typically three types of real estate brokers.

1. Associate Brokers have a broker’s license but work under another broker. However, they can still hire agents to work for them and are responsible for the actions of the agents employed.

2. Managing Brokers oversee the transaction and daily operations in the office. They can also be responsible for hiring new agents, training them, and leading the administrative staff. 

3. Principal Brokers supervise real estate agents to ensure they comply with state and national laws and ethics codes. Each real estate office has one principal broker. 

Westwood brokers get paid by taking a share of the commissions earned from the agent’s transactions that work under them. Brokers can also make their commissions from transactions and deals; however, since they are brokers, they earn their whole commission and do not have to split it with the office. For example, a home sells for 1 million dollars, and the total commission paid is $60,000. If the listing agent/buyer’s agent is a broker, he will keep his entire commission since he is a broker with his real estate practice.

Westwood Broker VS Agent

For more information on the differences between a Westwood broker and an agent and which one might benefit you with your buying or selling needs, please get in touch with the Shilian Group today.

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