Who is a broker?
A broker – in general terms – is a professional who represents his principal in a financial transaction such as trading in company stocks. In real estate terminology, a broker refers to a licensed intermediary that acts or represents sellers or buyers of real estate.
Generally, it is easy to mix up real estate brokers with real estate agents. While their functions may overlap in some instances, a real estate broker is usually higher in the professional ladder than real estate agents. Also, brokers often establish brokerages where agents are hired to facilitate real property transactions.
Real estate brokers are mostly required to be licensed before they begin their professional practice.
The responsibilities of a broker range from determination of the market value of a property for the seller, matching the properties with buyers, conducting negotiations, preparation of purchase offers for buyers and so on. Most brokers are paid on a commission-basis i.e. paid a certain percentage of the value at which the property was sold.
Often, brokers are given the authority to proceed with negotiations and eventual sale or purchase of a property on behalf of the seller or buyer.