What's the difference between an Licensed Agent and a Realtor

10 Replies

My question is to licensed agents and realtors. 

What's the difference between an Licensed Agent and a Realtor?

Also, as an licensed agent would I be able to gain access to the mls without joining any association such as CAR or SAR. Can I just pay mls fees and E&O fees?

A Realtor is a licensed agent that belongs to the NAR, and pays the dues.

There isn't a difference. Being a Realtor associates you with the NAR which is the National Association of Realtors. Realtors are still licensed agents but they are also members of this organization. Certain MLS companies require you to be member of the NAR to use their services but being a member is voluntary. Although certain companies require you to be a member it's not required to be a licensed agent.

So, if a person is licensed they can practice real estate but with limitations.

A licensee is almost forced into joining an association in order too reap all the rewards 

and benefits.

Welcome to BP.

Wayne is absolutely right.

I am an Illinois licensed real estate broker as well a realtor because I chose membership of NAR.

Hope it helps.

Also, you can't gain access to the MLS without joining your local association. That is why all of us RE agents are forced to also be REALTORS.

@James Peoples I believe it also has to do with the Broker/office of where your license is held. If your broker is apart of the NAR then you must be as well. However, if your broker is not a member of the NAR I do not believe it is required.

I know, it's almost like the NAR has monopolized the 'ethics' of real estate and force you to join and pay their fess...

Originally posted by @James Peoples:

So, if a person is licensed they can practice real estate but with limitations.

A licensee is almost forced into joining an association in order too reap all the rewards 

and benefits.

A Licensed Agent is a Real Estate Salesperson licensed by the BRE (Formerly Known as DRE) That is your title when you get licensed. Once you have joined a Board or Decided to become a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Then you can hold the Title Realtor. When you join your local Association or Board of Realtors you can receive the Title Realtor once you have done their orientation. We are ALL Licensed Agents. There is No Difference. We just chose to join our local Board or NAR to get the Designation of Realtor. Any Licensed Agent can practice Real Estate without limitation if you want to just pay for MLS fees for your local area.

If you place your license under a broker and their offices are members of particular Board then in order for you to get Realtor Benefits or MLS for yourself to be able to search for and list properties then you will need to join the NAR or Board that your office is member of to be considered a Realtor. Also the forms are all online so it is best that you have the CAR and NAR to be able to access all your real estate forms.

Thanks to all for your advice and opinions. 

I like to think of it like squares and rectangles. Not all rectangles are squares but all squares are rectangles.

Same with realtors and licensees.  Not all licensees are realtors but all realtors are licensees. Hope that all makes sense!

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