Real Estate Brokers: Salary Overview
Real estate brokers help clients buy, sell, and rent properties.
They are also licensed to manage their own real estate business.
A real estate broker’s job description typically includes soliciting potential clients, advising clients on prices, comparing properties, generating lists of properties, promoting properties, mediating negotiations between buyers and sellers, and ensuring that all terms of purchase contracts are met.
Most real estate brokers are self-employed workers.
As independent business people, they usually operate in a real estate office, handling business details and overseeing other people’s work.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for real estate brokers was $59,720 as of May 2019 which means that half of all real estate brokers earned less than this amount while half earned more.
Salaries vary widely depending on a variety of factors, including experience level, the local market, and the economy.
The lowest 10 percent of real estate brokers made less than $23,600 per year while the top 10 percent made more than $178,720 per year.
Brokers typically earn their salaries from commissions on sales.
The commission varies depending on the size of the property, its value, and the region.
Therefore their earnings are dependent upon their level of skills but also upon their client base and how many properties they sell.
Earnings can be irregular and as a beginner, you may face months without a sale.
For this reason, some brokers have another job to be able to sustain themselves and work in real estate only part-time.
Real Estate Broker Salary by Industry
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2018, 57 percent of all real estate brokers were self-employed workers while 39 percent of them worked for real estate and rental and leasing companies.
The average annual wage reported by brokers who worked in the real estate field was $81,160 as of May 2019.
Real estate brokers who worked in the management of companies and enterprises field earned $84,330 per year, on average.
The average annual wage was $82,160 per year for real estate brokers who were employed by companies that provide management, scientific, and technical consulting services and $89,790 per year for those who worked in the field of credit intermediation and related activities.
The highest average annual wage was reported by real estate brokers in the field of nonresidential building construction, a sector where the mean annual wage was $97,710 per year.
Earnings in the real estate sector also vary depending on the region and the state of employment.
The highest average annual wage was reported by real estate brokers in New Mexico, a sector where the mean salary for this occupation was $112,860 per year as of May 2019.
Other top-paying states where the mean annual wage was above $100,000 per year are Massachusetts and California.
Real estate brokers in Illinois, Oklahoma, and Utah, on the other hand, reported average annual wages that were below the $50,000 mark.
Earnings for real estate brokers also vary depending on the size of the real estate business.
Workplace size can range from a one-person business to a large firm with numerous employees.
Some brokers also have franchise agreements with large national or regional real estate companies.
In this case, the real estate broker pays a fee to be affiliated with a large name that is widely known in the real estate market.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, overall employment for real estate brokers is expected to grow 7 percent from 2018 to 2028.
This growth will stem mostly from the fact that many people look for larger homes or have to relocate for their job or other reasons.
* Based on information from the May 2021 salary report from the BLS. The figures represent accumulated data for all states of employment for Real Estate Brokers. BLS data represents averages and medians for workers at all levels of education and experience. This data doesn't represent starting salaries.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.