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What Does a Real Estate Agent Earn?

Updated on November 14, 2012

It depends. The established agents, who are also brokers, can easily make six figure incomes. They are the ones you see in the Sunday paper, they are the ones that can afford the ads. Agents that are new or with little experience are not the ones in the paper.

According to the National Association of Realtors, most agents earn far less than $50,000 a year. Yes, FAR less. Now, consider that an agent is working really 24\7 many times, and seldom less than 350 days a year. They have to contend with many lows and highs, they have long hours to sell the listings you find and struggle to get. They show the property to fickle buyers hundreds of times. There are lots of phone calls and paperwork. At the end of this, should you make a sell, you might end up with what is $10 hr., maybe more or less. Also, most agents are independent contractors and pay 10% in taxes than normal employees do not. The commission is often negotiated with the seller and may be lower than what you want. They can be anywhere from 3-6%, but the broker, who the agent works for, takes a part of that.

New agents seldom hit it big right out from the start, most make little in the first six months, if then, so, those rely on other sources of income or savings to hold them over.


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    • perrya profile image

      perrya 5 years ago

      yes, I am having second thoughts about enrolling in a real agent course.

    • Paul Kuehn profile image

      Paul Richard Kuehn 5 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand

      Perrya, This is a useful hub and what you say is very true. I tried marketing homes as a realtor for about nine months in the early 90s. Due to my personality and with very few potential buyers or sellers, I struggled and made next to nothing. In many ways, marketing my writing on hubpages is comparable, but at least I am earning a little money for my efforts. Voted up and sharing.