Everybody's a Real Estate Agent

Starting to think that this might be the year to sell? If so, you aren't going to have much trouble finding an agent.

According to The National Association of Realtors (NAR), 2.5 million people are licensed agents in the US and 1.2 million of these are associated with NAR as Realtors. Non-realtor agents may not be working in the field, but could become part of the real estate market again since they likely continue to hold licenses or have the right education to re-certify quickly.

People are entering the business in large numbers. NAR reports that 253,167 real estate agents joined NAR in 2004, a number that does not necessarily coincide with the record numbers that have become newly licensed.

If you do find yourself looking for an agent, keep in mind what services you need as well as what commission structure they charge! A more established agent can be more efficient in selling your home; however, you may like the energy and drive of someone who is new to the game. In either case, be sure to negotiate what you pay. Commissions are not as "fixed" as they might appear.

And you can always sell yourself, if you are willing to do the work. Many services now help homeowners to do the job of the real estate agent at a much lower cost. Everything you save in selling commission is more $ in your pocket.


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