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Real Estate Sales Agents
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Description: what do they do?
Rent, buy, or sell property for clients. Perform duties, such as study property listings, interview prospective clients, accompany clients to property site, discuss conditions of sale, and draw up real estate contracts. Includes agents who represent buyer.
Also known as:
Sales Agent, Real Estate Broker Associate, Broker in Charge, Realtor, Real Estate Broker, Broker Associate, Real Estate Salesperson, Real Estate Agent, Associate Broker

    What does this information tell me?

    This description is a quick overview of what workers in this career might do.

    "Also known as" shows other common names for this career.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from an O*NET database. Learn more on the Help page.

Career video
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    Transcript: Whether they represent the people who want to buy property or those who have property to sell, real estate brokers and sales agents help clients find the property they’re looking for, and complete successful transactions. Most agents and brokers work with either homes or business properties. They show properties to customers, travel to see properties for sale, and meet with potential clients. They also present purchase offers, and manage negotiations between buyers and sellers. Agents and brokers invest a lot of time looking for clients, and for property to sell. Real estate sales agents must work for brokers, who are licensed and own their own businesses. Agents earn a commission from the sales they make. Many brokers operate a real estate office, handling business details and overseeing the work of sales agents. Many real estate sales agents and brokers work over 40 hours per week including evenings and weekends. Some work part time and set their own hours, combining real estate activities with other careers. Licensure is required for all brokers and agents, along with state-accredited coursework. In most states, a broker’s license requires from one to three years’ experience as a licensed real estate sales agent. Some employers prefer candidates who have a college degree with courses in real estate, business, finance, law and economics.
View transcript
Outlook: will there be jobs?
Image. Employment outlook for this occupation
New job opportunities are likely in the future.


    What does this information tell me?

    Outlook information can tell you whether a career is expected to be in demand in the future—that is, whether there are likely to be job openings if you choose this career. Careers can have one of three outlooks:

    • A Bright outlook means new job opportunities are very likely in the future
    • An Average outlook means that a small number of new job opportunities are likely in the future (less than an 8 percent increase)
    • A Below Average outlook means new job opportunities are less likely in the future

    You can also view local job listings in this field by clicking "Find job openings" above. This can help you see if local businesses are hiring—another way of looking at demand.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the O*NET Resource Center. Learn more about O*NET’s Bright Outlook occupations. Note this information is only available at a national level, so even if you selected a state, you’ll only see this information for the whole country.

Projected employment
Florida
39,170
2016 Employment
46,110
2026 Employment
18%
Percent change
4,540
Annual projected job openings
United States
348,800
2016 Employment
369,000
2026 Employment
6%
Percent change
34,400
Annual projected job openings

    What does this information tell me?

    Projected employment shows how much employment is expected to grow in this occupation over a 10-year period. This can help you decide if this career is a good choice for future job opportunities. You can look at projected employment in your state, or in other states where you might consider living.

    You can see the total number of people employed in this occupation in 2016, the number expected to be employed in 2026, and rate of growth over those years.

    The projections are based on assumptions of unemployment rates and labor productivity growth rates.  While the projected numbers may not be exact, they are helpful to compare one career to another, or one location to another.

    What is the source of this information?

    State-level data come from Projections Central and each state's Labor Market Information office.

    National-level data come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics Employment Projections, 2016-26.

Typical wages

Annual wages for Real Estate Sales Agents in Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL MSA
This graph displays wage data.  Find details by selecting the table view.
This chart displays wage data.  Find details by selecting the table view.
LocationTampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL MSAUnited States
10%$26,770$23,130
25%$33,090$31,180
Median$40,260$45,990
75%$79,580$71,950
90%$154,270$109,490


    What does this information tell me?

    This chart shows you a range of how much most workers in this occupation earn per hour, in the location that you selected.

    You can select from three views of this data:

    • The Graph shows you wages at the 10th, 25th, 50th, 75th and 90th percentiles. Note that the lowest (10th %ile) wage shown is not necessarily a "starting wage." Instead it means that 10 percent of all workers in this career earn less that this amount, and 90 percent earn more. However, you can assume that you might earn close to the 10th or 25th %ile wages when you start out in most careers.
    • Select "Chart" to see a visual comparison between national wages and wages in the location you selected.
    • Select "Table" to see more wage data the national and local level.

    Please note that wage data are not available at the city or ZIP code level. If you selected a city or ZIP code, you will see wage data for the regional area.

    Also note that in this update, 21 detailed occupations found within the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) were replaced with 10 new aggregations of those occupations; read more about these OES changes.

    You can learn more about wages for this and other occupations by clicking “See more wages” above.

    What is the source of this information?

    The wage information comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics Program, 2017 data. For more detailed state wage data, please find the link to your state's wage data program in the Other Resources box.

Education and experience: to get started
People starting in this career usually have:
  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • No work experience
  • 1 to 12 months on-the-job training

Programs that can prepare you:

    What does this information tell me?

    This shows you the typical level of education, work experience, and on-the-job training that most people have when they start in this career. Note that these are not requirements for entering this field, but the information can help you understand how qualified you might be.

    Interested in starting in this career? You can search for education programs in your local area by clicking “Find local training” above.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections Education and Training Data.

Typical education
How much education do most people in this career have?
Chart. Percent of workers in this field by education level attained

    What does this information tell me?

    This chart shows you the range of education levels that people who currently work in this field have. You can use this to see if you fit in this range. Note that this includes ALL people who work in this field and not just those getting started.

    Interested in getting qualified for this career? You can search for programs that lead to the education needed, in your local area, by clicking “Find local training” above.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections Education and Training Data.

Certifications: show your skills
Let employers know you have the skills to do well at this job.
Earning a certification can help you:
  • Get a job
  • Get a promotion

    What does this information tell me?

    When you click "Find certifications" you'll see a list of national certifications that are related to this career. From there, you can learn how to achieve one of these certifications to help you enter or get ahead in this field.

    What is the source of this information?

    This collection of occupational certifications is collected and regularly updated by CareerOneStop. Learn more at Certification Finder Help.

Licenses: do you need one?
Some states require an occupational license to work in this career.

    What does this information tell me?

    When you click "Find license details in your state" you'll see the license name and contact information for the agency in your state that oversees licensing for this field. If you have not selected a location, you'll see a list of all state licenses for this occupation.

    What is the source of this information?

    Information on licensed occupations is gathered in each state by Labor Market Information units under a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. Learn more at License Finder Help.

Apprenticeships: learn on the job
Apprenticeships combine paid on-the-job-training with classroom lessons.

    What does this information tell me?

    When you click "Find apprenticeship sponsors" you'll find information that can help you locate apprenticeship opportunities in your state:

    • If there are businesses that have sponsored apprenticeships in this field in the past, you'll find their name and contact information.
    • If there are related occupations that might have apprenticeship opportunities, you'll find links to that information.
    • You'll also see contact information for state and federal agencies that oversee apprenticeship programs.

    What is the source of this information?

    Apprenticeship information comes from the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Apprenticeships, and from CareerOneStop. Learn more at Apprenticeship Finder Help.

Activities: what you might do in a day
  • Negotiate prices or other sales terms.
  • Appraise property values.
  • Advise real estate clients.
  • Develop content for sales presentations or other materials.
  • Prepare sales or other contracts.
  • Gather customer or product information to determine customer needs.
  • Obtain property information.
  • Contact current or potential customers to promote products or services.
  • Explain technical product or service information to customers.
  • Deliver promotional presentations to current or prospective customers.
  • Attend events to develop professional knowledge.
  • Schedule appointments with prospective customers.
  • Verify customer credit information.
  • Develop professional relationships or networks.
  • Examine condition of property or products.
  • Train sales personnel.
  • Contract real estate to clients.
  • Recommend products or services to customers.
  • Develop proposals for current or prospective customers.
  • Identify investment opportunities or strategies.
  • Arrange delivery of goods or services.

    What does this information tell me?

    This is a list of typical work activities that people in this career might do on the job. You can use this list to get an idea of whether this career might be a good fit for you.

    Click on “More activities” to see more detailed examples of activities for this career.

    You can also use this list to help you prepare for a job interview. Or, if you’ve already held a job like this, you can copy these activities to use on your resume.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from O*NET OnLine's Occupation Information. They are O*NET’s Detailed Work Activities.

Knowledge
People in this career often know a lot about:
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    What does this information tell me?

    This is a list of general knowledge areas that are most commonly required for jobs in the career. Knowledge is typically gained through education and related experience.

    This list can help you learn if you are prepared for a job in this career. It can also help you decide on education or training programs that could help you prepare for the career.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the O*NET Resource Center. Learn more about O*NET's Knowledge descriptors.

Skills
People in this career often have these skills:
  • Active Listening - Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
  • Speaking - Talking to others.
  • Negotiation - Bringing people together to solve differences.
  • Persuasion - Talking people into changing their minds or their behavior.
  • Coordination - Changing what is done based on other people's actions.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Understanding people's reactions.
  • Time Management - Managing your time and the time of other people.
  • Critical Thinking - Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
  • Service Orientation - Looking for ways to help people.
  • Reading Comprehension - Reading work-related information.

    What does this information tell me?

    This is a list of a list the work-related skills most commonly required for jobs in the career.

    This list can help you understand how well your current skills fit this career. It can also help you plan your education or professional development.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the O*NET Resource Center. Learn more about O*NET's Skills descriptors.

Abilities
People in this career often have talent in:
  • Oral Expression - Communicating by speaking.
  • Oral Comprehension - Listening and understanding what people say.
  • Speech Clarity - Speaking clearly.
  • Speech Recognition - Recognizing spoken words.
  • Written Comprehension - Reading and understanding what is written.
  • Information Ordering - Ordering or arranging things.
  • Written Expression - Communicating by writing.

    What does this information tell me?

    This is a list of a list of personal qualities that might influence work and are most commonly required for success in this career.

    This list can help you understand if your natural strengths and abilities are a good fit for this career.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the O*NET Resource Center. Learn more about O*NET's Abilities descriptors.

Interests
  • Conventional - Occupations related to Conventional interests frequently involve following set procedures and routines. They include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
  • Enterprising - Occupations with Enterprising interests frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. Many involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.

    What does this information tell me?

    This is a list of work environment-preferences that are most commonly associated with the career. It can help you understand if your natural interests are a good fit for this career.

    Click "Take an interest assessment" for a quick 30-question assessment that can help you understand your interests and see careers that might be good matches for them.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from the O*NET Resource Center. Learn more about O*NET's Interest descriptors.

Typical tasks
  • Present purchase offers to sellers for consideration.
  • Act as an intermediary in negotiations between buyers and sellers, generally representing one or the other.
  • Compare a property with similar properties that have recently sold to determine its competitive market price.
  • Advise clients on market conditions, prices, mortgages, legal requirements and related matters.
  • Promote sales of properties through advertisements, open houses, and participation in multiple listing services.
  • Accompany buyers during visits to and inspections of property, advising them on the suitability and value of the homes they are visiting.
  • Prepare documents such as representation contracts, purchase agreements, closing statements, deeds, and leases.
  • Interview clients to determine what kinds of properties they are seeking.
  • Generate lists of properties that are compatible with buyers' needs and financial resources.
  • Contact property owners and advertise services to solicit property sales listings.
  • Arrange for title searches to determine whether clients have clear property titles.
  • Display commercial, industrial, agricultural, and residential properties to clients and explain their features.
  • Review property listings, trade journals, and relevant literature, and attend conventions, seminars, and staff and association meetings, to remain knowledgeable about real estate markets.
  • Coordinate appointments to show homes to prospective buyers.
  • Answer clients' questions regarding construction work, financing, maintenance, repairs, and appraisals.
  • Advise sellers on how to make homes more appealing to potential buyers.
  • Investigate clients' financial and credit status to determine eligibility for financing.
  • Develop networks of attorneys, mortgage lenders, and contractors to whom clients may be referred.
  • Inspect condition of premises, and arrange for necessary maintenance or notify owners of maintenance needs.
  • Conduct seminars and training sessions for sales agents to improve sales techniques.
  • Appraise properties to determine loan values.
  • Evaluate mortgage options to help clients obtain financing at the best prevailing rates and terms.
  • Arrange meetings between buyers and sellers when details of transactions need to be negotiated.
  • Rent or lease properties on behalf of clients.
  • Solicit and compile listings of available rental properties.
  • Review plans for new construction with clients, enumerating and recommending available options and features.
  • Visit properties to assess them before showing them to clients.
  • Locate and appraise undeveloped areas for building sites, based on evaluations of area market conditions.
  • Contact utility companies for service hookups to clients' property.

    What does this information tell me?

    This is a list of typical tasks that people in this career might do on the job.  You can use this list to get an idea of whether this career might be a good fit for you.

    Click on “More tasks” to see more detailed examples for this career.

    You can also use this list to help you prepare for a job interview. Or, if you’ve already held a job like this, you can copy these tasks to use on your resume.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information comes from O*NET OnLine's Occupation Information. They are O*NET‘s Tasks.

    What does this information tell me?

    These are additional online resources related to this career. You may find different or more detailed information at these sources.

    What is the source of this information?

    This information is collected and maintained by CareerOneStop.