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Real estate brokers are realty professionals that are trained to function as a mediator between buyers and sellers of real estate. This essentially sets the real estate broker apart from the similar profession of the real estate agent, who is mainly concerned with achieving the sale of property. Real estate brokers will take the approach of proactively seeking to identify buyers who are looking for the type of property that a seller wishes to sell, and will work to ensure that both parties come to terms that are agreeable for everyone.
Real estate brokers are often associated with a local realtor, although there are freelance brokers that choose to focus on high profile projects outside a local geographic area. Real estate brokers normally are understood to be the salespersons for brokers, and will work closely with the broker to help cultivate rapport between buyers and sellers who appear to be a good match. However, the agent is more focused on the successful execution of the sale, while the broker tends to be more proactive in getting sellers to sign up with the agency and allow the firm to represent their best interests. As such, real estate brokers often do not receive a commission for his or her work, but rather compensation through the application of agency fees related to the services rendered.
In many countries around the world, the ability to function as a real estate broker is regulated. Often, some formal degree of training is necessary, accompanied by certification by a recognized and accredited real estate entity. Most jurisdictions have at least a few specific legal stipulations that must be observed by the broker in order to receive proper remuneration for services rendered.
However, it must be understood that everyone who engages in the task of matching a buyer to a seller is not necessarily a real estate broker. Depending on the circumstances, an attorney may be able to function in this same capacity and still receive a fee for his or her services related to the sale. In addition, buyers and sellers that choose to conduct a transaction without the use of a real estate agency may do so without either party having to be a certified real estate broker.