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Broker vs. Agent: Who Should You Hire in Florida?

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Looking for a real estate agent in Florida? You may have seen the terms “agent” and “broker” used interchangeably but they’re not the same thing. Here’s the difference between them to help you choose the right real estate professional. 

What’s the difference between an agent and a broker?

An agent is a professional who has completed the educational and training requirements needed to obtain a license whereas a broker is a real estate agent who has passed the broker license exam. An agent must work under the guidance of a broker while a broker can work independently or have their own firm.

The tasks of an agent may vary but they are usually responsible for the following: 

  • Assist with the buying, selling, and renting process
  • Organize and submit paperwork from mortgage pre-approval to closing
  • Facilitate contract negotiations, including the sales price, repairs, etc.

An agent may serve as a buyer’s agent, representing homebuyers and helping them find suitable properties, make offers, view homes, and refer them to a lender, contractor, or home inspector. They may also act as a listing agent, helping sellers determine their asking price for the home, find qualified buyers, and make arrangements for home staging and open houses.  

In Florida, agents are also referred to as real estate sales associates and are expected to work under a broker’s supervision. A licensed sales associate can practice in any of the following areas of specialization without the need for additional requirements:

  • Agricultural
  • Business
  • Commercial 
  • Industrial
  • Residential

A broker, on the other hand, arranges, supervises, and negotiates real estate transactions. Their tasks may vary depending on their role but they are usually responsible for:

  • Managing a brokerage firm 
  • Recruiting, training, and supervising agents/sales associates
  • Drafting real estate contracts
  • Communicating with associations and government agencies

There are different kinds of brokers:

  • An associate broker represents buyers and sellers without broker supervision.
  • A designated broker, also called a principal broker, manages agents or sales associates at a firm. Each firm has a designated broker for each state in which it is licensed to operate. A designated broker can also manage multiple firms in different states. In many cases, the designated broker holds the license for the firm and gets paid a salary instead of a commission.
  • A managing broker, also called a broker-in-charge, takes responsibility for the firm’s daily operations, recordkeeping, compliance, and vendor relationships. They report to the designated broker. 

Which one should you work with?

It depends on your goals and needs. In general, a broker does everything that an agent or sales associate can do. They have the capacity to complete all the requirements of sales transactions, including complex ones. They have undergone advanced training in order to obtain their broker license.

Work with a top real estate agent in Florida

Nexxos Realtyhelps clients buy and sell homes in Coral Gables and the surrounding areas. Contact our team at 786.210.3562 or message us here. Our firm is led by licensed real estate broker Anamaria Velasquez, who has over 10 years of experience assisting celebrities and other high-profile clients in Florida.

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