Real estate is a lucrative career field. If you are looking to get started in this industry, you may be confused about the titles. The three most commonly confused terms include real estate agent, broker, and realtor. Their roles may overlap, but in Utah these are distinctly different professions which earn different salaries.


A real estate agent facilitates real estate transactions. The agents’ job is to bring buyers and sellers together. The agent earns a commission that is a specified percentage of the property’s selling price.

A real estate broker is an independent real estate professional that matches sellers and buyers. He or she prepares offers and handles negotiations. As a broker, you have more training on real estate matters. You are the boss; real estate agents work for you.

A realtor is any real estate professional that is a member of the realtor’s association. That can include brokers, agents, and salespeople. Realtors are held to higher standards of expertise and work by a code of ethics.


A real estate broker has more education in real estate subject matter than an agent. As a broker, you can start your real estate brokerage firm and hire agents. You can also work independently.

In Utah, broker licensing is awarded after 120 hours of training in a Utah real estate school. Today, many prefer to enroll in a real estate broker license course online at a real estate school such as The Institute of Real Estate Education.

After the training, you must take and pass the real estate licensing broker exam, which is deeper and broader than the agent’s exam. The real estate broker exam is in three parts: Advanced Real Estate Principles, Advanced Real Estate Practices, and Advanced Utah License Law.

Real estate agents and salespersons are required to train and take examinations as well. You must take 120 hours of training at a real estate pre-license school. You must then sit for and pass the sales agent exam. The real estate agent exam is in two parts—federal and state real estate laws and real estate principles.


To work by yourself as a broker, you need to have a broker’s license plus three years of experience in real estate. A real estate broker license course from an online real estate school is the key to getting a broker license in Utah.

A broker handles many technical aspects of real estate transactions. As a broker, you are your own boss. You don’t answer to someone else –you are in charge of agents and salespersons. You can start your brokerage and grow your company beyond the dreams of entrepreneurial success. The Institute of Real Estate Education is your launchpad.

You can also choose to partner up with other brokers. Your client is the only boss in this line of work. You must also adhere to ethical and legal guidelines. These are taught in the real estate broker license course.

Broker duties:

  • Find potential clients; buyers, sellers, landlords.
  • Advise clients on technical real estate matters, including pricing, mortgages, and market conditions
  • Promote properties via listings advertisements and open houses
  • Mediate negotiations between buyer and seller
  • Guide compliance on contracts terms
  • Prepare contracts, deeds, and purchase agreements.

As for agents, after passing the exams and getting the license, you go on to join a brokerage firm. You start working with home sellers, buyers, and renters. As a real estate agent, your job description is similar in many ways to a broker’s except a broker is licensed to run their own firm.

Agent duties examples:

  • Find and connect real estate agents.
  • Work with brokers, attorneys, and other real estate professionals.
  • Consult and advise clients in real estate financing and market conditions.
  • Market real estate properties.
  • Manage exchanges and property.


Real estate brokers earn a commission, which is 5-6% of the home sale price. A broker gets to keep all the money he/she earns. The broker may earn additional income from their agents.

Real estate agents earn a commission of 5-6% of the home’s sale price. This commission is split in three ways. For instance, if you are a seller agent, a buyer agent and the broker you work for will share in your earnings.

And who is a Realtor?

Realtor is a name for any real estate professional registered with the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). If you are a broker, agent, or salespersons registered with NAR, the Realtor title is yours to leverage, but more is required of you as a realtor. NAR has an extensive code of ethics that you must abide by. This is like a union for real estate professionals, and like a union, they charge fees to join. Realtors can also belong to local and state trade unions.

“Our mission is to empower REALTORS® as they preserve, protect, and advance the right to real property for all.” NAR website

All real estate professionals are experts in their field. Even so, a broker earns more money and has more opportunities for entrepreneurship. Contact us at the Institute of Real Estate Education to start your Utah real estate broker course or for more information about our Utah real estate school.