The Real Estate Agent Typical Salary

Since real estate agents are paid commission

Real Estate means hard work

A real estate agent is paid commission only

only, anyone asking the question: “What is a typical real estate agent salary?

clearly does not understand what the real estate profession is all about. This is made obvious to me when I get asked this question by people who want to get in the business when they see a few Realtors making tons of money.

Be Prepared To Work Hard As A Real Estate Agent

I do not want to discourage you, but I also do not want represent real estate as a magic bullet answer to a deeper problem – how to make a good living.  Especially in San Francisco Real Estate where you must compete against experienced real estate agents who are well established.  Needing more money does not seem to me to be a good enough reason to sell real estate. Starting any new career is tough, but a commission-based profession is even more challenging, especially for people who are used to a steady salary.

First off we are independent contractors and have no health and retirement benefits. Plus, we really do not have any boss to speak of. We are pretty much on our own and our success depends mostly on our own creativity in creating a client base and our self discipline in carrying out our own unique marketing strategy.

Many people believe if they have very outgoing engaging personalities, they will be a successful real estate agent. But real estate involves a lot of detailed paperwork, writing legal contracts and lots of patience and follow through. Plus, it is a profession where you have to have strong boundaries and know, like the Gambler, when to hold up, when to walk away, when to run. Many people do not have this inner core of toughness. Being nice all the time will not make a person successful in real estate.

How to Get Real Estate Clients

ou offer which is different from the many other agents out there?”

For those of you out there who truly want to know what a day

One way of making it in real estate is by becoming a real estate assistant or by joining a real estate team and working as a Buyers’ Agent. Understand you will need to have a year or two of savings to live on while you build up a referral base and have steady income. It takes approximately five years of working really hard—sixty to seventy hours a week—to build up a client base. “Where will you get your clients?” is an important question to ask yourself and think through carefully.

Research what makes a successful real estate agent. For instance you need to know how many prospects one can expect to get at an open house.  If you are lucky—one—and many times, none. Another question might be, “What percentage of prospects turn into solid clients with an agent getting paid?” In fact 20% is actually considered excellent.  Other important questions to ask yourself: “How many people are in your sphere of influence?  Is there any way you can increase this number?” Also, “How will you market yourself?” and this:  “What do you offer which is different from other agents out there?”

For those of you who truly want to know what it is like in the life of a real estate agent feel free to read an excerpt, from my new book Getting the Property SOUL’D. My real time true-to-life stories will give you excellent insights into what the day to day life of a real estate agent is like. And, although we are not paid a salary and our income can vary year to year, through courage, tenacity, discipline and confidence you can make more money than you can at most salaried jobs.


Be aware that any clients names have been changed to protect their privacy. Furthermore, Paula Pagano does not accept any liability for the content of any Blogs and this Website or for any actions you take or resultant consequences of actions taken based on the information provided in this communication. Any advice is my opinion after being a 35 year experienced real estate agent in San Francisco.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *