Realtors or real estate agents help people find homes. Subsequently, the real estate agent is paid a commission for the sale during the closing when the paperwork is finalized. Real estate agents must be licensed in their state to sell homes, condos or other properties. A real estate agent will usually get a license after passing a written examination, which covers real estate transactions and law. Most real estate agents have a high energy level and enjoy working with people.
The average annual salary for a real estate agent is $40,150, according to 2008 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The top 10 percent of real estate agents in the United States earn annual salaries of more than $101,860. The annual salary range for the middle 50 percent of real estate agents is $27,390 to $64,820. The lowest 10 percent of real estate agents earn salaries of less than $21,120 per year.
Like other professions, real estate agents typically earn larger salaries as they gain experience. The average salary ranges for real estate agents based on experience according to 2011 data from Payscale.com are: one to four years -- $25,515 to $91,554; five to nine years -- $39,305 to $102,789; 10 to 19 years -- $39,037 to $124,096; more than 20 years -- $60,000 to $210,000.
Type of Employer
A real estate agent's salary will also vary depending on the type of employer for which he works. Following are the salary ranges of real estate agents by type of employer, according to Payscale: real estate company -- $32,968 to $91,974; self-employed -- $39,996 to $144,160; franchise -- $14,470 to $42,729; private practice/firm -- $33,000 to $65,000.
Real estate salaries will usually vary by industry type. Following are the annual median wages for industries that employ the most real estate agents, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics: residential building construction -- $49,620; land subdivision -- $44,410; offices of real estate agencies and brokers -- $41,320; activities related to real estate -- $36,410; lessors of real estate -- $32,150.
A real estate agent's salary also varies by the state. The standard of living may be higher in certain states such as California, for example. Following are salary ranges for real estate agents by state, according to Payscale: California -- $40,337 to $148,017; Florida -- $23,984 to $108,000; Arizona -- $79,354 to $204,142; Texas- - $36,625 to $82,874; Illinois -- $34,374 to $91,563; Georgia -- $39,305 to $97,667; South Carolina -- $15,000 to $43,500.
2016 Salary Information for Real Estate Brokers and Sales Agents
Real estate brokers and sales agents earned a median annual salary of $46,810 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, real estate brokers and sales agents earned a 25th percentile salary of $30,850, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $76,200, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 444,100 people were employed in the U.S. as real estate brokers and sales agents.
- real estate contract image by Keith Frith from Fotolia.com