The Difference between Residential and Commercial Real Estate Agents

Know the difference between residential and commercial real estate agents?  The answer here is simple: it all depends on the type of property being dealt in. however, there are other factors that add to it all, such as the type and level of education, the work culture, and also the commission upon transaction. 

Job description

A typical example of the commercial estate agent’s dealings would consist of negotiating on properties such as office buildings, hospitals, whole apartment complexes, and also malls. Similarly, a residential real estate agent’s job description would focus on, as the name has it, residents such as houses, condominiums, all the houses that are best used for residencies. 

Investors’ requirements

As a commercial real estate agent you will have to be more focused on the return on investment, this means that numbers are at the base of the entire field rather than the emotional factor. The usual questions a commercial real estate agent would ask is “what is the cap rate” “what is the monthly ROI) and “what will be the payoff schedule. Every transaction comes with great risk, if things go south, but also a great reward if things go the right way. The commercial real estate agent needs to be aware that their client is looking for a good investment, rather than something that will hold emotional value. The turnover rate on a commercial estate is much lesser as compared to the residential real estate because investors are, typically, more likely to hold onto the buildings longer than residential homes. 

Advertising to the clients

Sure, the commissions that a commercial real estate agent receives is ten times greater than that of a residential real estate agent but they usually don’t come in often. You will need to be constantly prepared to face the storm if the year doesn’t make sales. The way residential real estate agents reach out to their clients is vastly different from the commercial real estate agents. The latter has to present date and numbers to their clients instead of showing them the pictures of the interiors. They will have to be ready with all the cap rates, gross rent multipliers, and many more things. These are all the things that the residential agent does not have to deal with. This is because their clients are usually concerned more with the rent schedules and insurance rates rather than finding the perfect kitchen. 


Residential real estate agents are known to make good money in one year, granted the other conditions are perfect. The two primary conditions of the excellent payoff are that the clients have to be willing to spend a lot of money and that the market is brimming with the newest and hottest real estate. However, the reason why commercial estate agent earns higher, annually than the residential estate agents is that their field is often independent of some of the market conditions, which may typically work against the residential real estate. 

Work hours and training

If you are looking to work “normal” business hours, then go for the commercial real estate agent job because they tend to work the standard 40 hours per week. However, residential realtors are never really off the job. 

Other than that, the training for a commercial realtor will last much longer than that of a residential realtor. They have to go through a mentorship program in order to get their certificate.

Both the professions are remarkable in their own way, however, there are precise differences in both of them in terms of commission, training, type of real estate, yet both work hard to get you the real estate that you need. Know you know the difference between residential and commercial real estate agents.

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