How Much Money do Real Estate Agents Make?
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How Much Money do Real Estate Agents Make?

Hi, it’s Mark Ferguson with Invest Four
More. Today, I want to talk about how much money real estate agents make. So before we
get started on that, a little bit about myself: I run, blog about real
estate investing, fix and flipping, rental properties, and being a real estate agent.
I’ve been a realtor since 2001; my dad was an agent since 1978. He got me into the business.
I ended up finding success through REOs, listing HUD homes, which is something he never did.
But that just shows there are so many ways to make money in real estate and be successful.
And I want to talk about some misconceptions out there, how much money you really can make
as an agent, and if the information you find online is really as accurate as it seems to
be. So first off, the average income for real
estate agents can seem quite small. I mean there are some sources that say it’s as
little as 30,000 dollars a year for real estate agents. And many people see that figure, they
automatically think you can’t make any money as a real estate agent, it’s impossible
to become successful, I’m not even going to look into any farther. And they start looking
for another career. The fact is, those numbers are extremely misleading. There’s a number
of reasons why many real estate agents make much, much more money than that. And in fact
many agents are extremely successful and make a ton of money. So the first problem with those statistics
that show real estate agents might only make 30,000 dollars a year, is they include part-time
agents. Many, many real estate agents are only part time. They might be investors, they
might be housewives, they might be people with other careers who become real estate
agents to try and make some extra money. It is very, very hard to be successful real estate
agent if you’re only working part time. It’s just very tough. Clients want to see houses
at all times during the day, after work, on the weekends, and people need to get a hold
of you. So if you have a job where you’re working 9 to 5 and you can’t stop to take
a phone call, or you can’t reply to emails, it’s going to be very hard to sell any houses
at all. And that’s why it’s so hard for part-time agents to make very much money. So those part-time
agents really bring down the figure of how much money real estate agents make. And if
you look at full-time agents, they actually make over 50,000 dollars a year. Now there’s even more reasons why real estate
agents can make much more money. I myself have a team; I manage nine people. We sell
close to 200 houses every year. I make a lot of money as a real estate agent, and at this
point in my career I don’t even sell that many houses myself, because I’m managing my
agents, and those agents are selling houses for me. But that’s later on in your career.
To begin with, it’s definitely possible to get started in the business, to make a
lot of money, and sell a lot of houses. And don’t believe those online articles, those
naysayers, the people who tell you real estate agents can’t make any money. For one thing,
have they ever been in the business? Have those people who wrote those articles ever
been a realtor or real estate agent? Do they know anybody, you know, who has been an agent
indefinitely? Do they interview them, or are they just looking at those statistics you
see that show the incomes are so low? In my experience, most of those articles are only
looking at the statistics. They’re not actually talking to people, they’re not talking to
agents, and they’re not digging into those numbers to see if maybe they’re missing something,
which I think they are in most cases, because they’re so skewed. Now besides part-time agents bringing down
that average income number, being a real estate agent is not the same as having a corporate
job, as working for somebody else. In most cases, you’re going to have to be your own
boss, you’re going to have to push yourself, you’re going to have to motivate yourself
to succeed. Many people just cannot do that. They need someone there to tell them what
to do, you know, tell them when to go to work, tell them what to do at work, or they just
don’t do anything. And many agents kind of spin their wheels trying to figure out what
they’re doing, different marketing techniques, taking classes all day long, trying to learn,
learn, learn without doing anything, and they don’t end up making any money either. And the facts are, if you come into real estate
with a plan, you set goals, you work with a broker or company that has a training program
and teaches you how to make money, and you dedicate yourself full-time to being a realtor,
you can make a lot of money very quickly. I’ve got an agent on my team, who in his
first year made over a hundred thousand dollars. Now that’s not typical, I’m not saying
that anybody can come in and be an agent and make a hundred thousand dollars their first
year, but it is definitely possible. I have a second agent on my team who’s probably
going to come very close if not reach that hundred thousand dollars in his first year
as well. He sold six houses in his first few months in the business. If you know you need
to work hard, if you set regular hours, if you’re not messing around, if you have goals,
and you have somebody to help you and mentor you, real estate is a fantastic field to be
in. So don’t believe all those online articles,
all those people who tell you you can’t make money in real estate because they don’t make
any money, and there’s too many realtors. I hear that all the time. “Well there’s
too many realtors in my area,” you know, “I can’t possibly make any money because
there’s just too much competition.” The facts are maybe 10 percent of the agents make
about 90 percent of the money in real estate. And the rest of the agents barely sell any
houses, barely make any money, because they have no idea what they’re doing, or they don’t
want to work hard, they’re working part-time, or they just don’t have their heart in it.
The agents that go at it full time that really put their heart into it make a lot of money.
And there is definitely room for many more agents to make that money as well. It’s not about cold calling, it’s not about,
you know, door-knocking and talking to complete strangers all day long. It’s about building
your circle of influence, being with your friends, with your family, doing the best
job, the best service you can, and providing a great resource for other people who are
already in your life. You do that, those people will tell other people about you, it’ll
start ballooning, you do take care of new clients you get, you do have to do some marketing,
obviously. Don’t be afraid to talk on the phone, don’t be afraid to meet people in person,
and that’s really how simple it is. If you’ve got some training, and a mentor to teach you
all the ins and outs that go with those basic skills. So again, please don’t knock real estate off
your list of vocations just because you see how little the average agent makes. There
are the three agents in my office who make over a hundred thousand a year; they actually
make a lot closer to 300,000 a year. And our office has about 30 agents in it. Those are
pretty good statistics when you look at the average income and how much money people make.
Now again, don’t expect to make that money your first year. Not everybody can make that
much money because not everybody will put their heart in it, they won’t make goals,
they’ll say goals are for somebody else, they won’t have a plan because they think
things will just fall into place. But if you start out, you treat it as a business, and
you have a lot of discipline to make yourself work hard, real estate is a great job and
can be very rewarding for a lot of people. Plus, you usually get to make your own schedule.
You can go to your kids baseball games, go to their practices, you don’t have to be at
your job 9 to 5, and it’s an awesome feeling being able to have that flexibility. Thanks
a lot. A lot more information on Have a great day.


  • Aaron Torres

    hi I am a high school senior and I want to be a real estate agent.. I have 4 months till I graduate from highschool but I want to start taking my classes now while I graduate from school. what do I need to do or what website do I start my classes?????( excellent video BTW Mr. Mark

  • Chevy Chevelle

    I'm new to real estate, just got my license. Can you make a video explaining "teams" and why joining one might be advantageous? Thanks!

  • Justin Flisher

    Hey Mark this video really motivated me to become a real estate agent. I turned 18 and want to start as soon as possible. I have done so much reading online and it's sad that so many websites say don't become a agent because they don't make much or most of them fail, but it really got to me because I have so many qualities of becoming a agent because I love being out and meeting new people and want them to feel welcome but all these websites just make people not want to become a agent anymore. I came across your video and I'm proud to see that you are telling the truth about everything up front and it really seems like you love doing what you do. If there is any advice I could use please don't hesitate to let me know.

    -Justin Flisher

  • JL123

    i currently work 8-5 not making that much….tired of living paycheck to paycheck and really want to start making money.  Always have been interested in real estate just worried about the first initial start up with no pay of course unless your selling. So what would you say it takes to start up with marketing (business cards) etc. as a brand new realtor working under an independent or franchise broker that literally just got her/his license. Also, I have bills just like everyone….so when you first start up and you don't sell a house for 3 months-what would be your advice on how to handle your bills when you don't make money your first couple of months..those are my 2 biggest fears and why i haven't gone to real estate school yet. thanks for your help

  • marcelo fuentes

    Hi Mark, great video. I am an agent in California. I've been hearing a lot of buzz lately about the Real Estate business and the Millennials. The ubber (Tech) future of the business. Can they be that arrogant to think that they will be a able to purchase or sell a home without an agent. I would love to hear your opinion on this. Thank you.

  • Drivn Apparel Company

    I got my license a long time ago. It's afforded me a great life and I've done much much more with the money I've made. All I can tell you is that I stopped here because I was cruising the 'net and just happened to see this and watched it. You seem like a really cool dude and I would definitely work on your team if I was so inclined. Take care man and keep up the good work!

  • j 831

    hey mark am a college student with a flexible scedule and i am interested in becoming an agent what would you recomend?

  • Neva Williamson

    Thats so true many agents spin their wheels for so long and their numbers or lack of numbers are included in the statistics

  • Farah Pierre

    Very informative video! I am currently in school to be a part time salesperson for extra income. What would be a realistic annual goal to set in the # of residential homes to sell or what expectation does brokers have for part time agents?

  • Bryant Aguilar

    I am currently in high school and I really want to get into real estate because that is what I fell I was meant to do. My mother and aunt where both real estate agents so they can mentor me but I am wondering what major I should take for college. If anybody knows please let me know.


    ok so the magic word here is that you are a real state broker , not a real state agent 2 diferent thing in making
    huuuuuuge money,

  • Erik W.

    I passed my exam, but not really sure I can "sell" anything– much less houses. Are there other ways to make money with a license?

  • Keith Mathieu

    I've been wanting to be a real estate agent since Graduating high school in 2012, I kept backing away from it because of the salary statistics and because I felt it was a risky career. I do feel like I will be very successful and have the personality/ business mindset for it, I want to do this and become successful but how do you go about starting out full time with no income at first?

  • Luxus Häuser

    Nice video Mark. I like the relaxed tone of voice, it connects better than some presenters who take off at 90 miles an hour.

  • Patti Raithel

    I had just watched a video telling me they make far less than 30,000 a year. But, like you say it's how much heart and soul you put into it.  I am still working a 9-5 job , but am seriously thinking getting into real estate. I am  learning everything I can about it.

  • J

    @02:15 He's right… How haven't I thought of this?! I'm planning on pursuing dental hygienistry but also real estate… The one possible shimmer of light in that situation is that both careers include flexible hours. Realistically speaking, however, what if I'm needed by a client of clients when I'm at work as a dental hygienist?

    Well… Isn't this a kick in the balls…

  • J

    I mean, how awkward (and pitching-forking to your career) would it be if a had to explain, "Yeah… Sorry about this, Tom, but I'm actually a work right now and can't make it. How about I schedule you in for – -" Click The phone hangs up, and I've just lost myself a several thousand dollar deal.

  • Ismael J. S. Iraola

    Thank you Marc…. this was a very helpful video and continue working like that. Am starting my real estate career in NY …

  • Teddy Smith

    I work part-time as a pool boy and I'm just about to go full-time. I think it's still possible especially when you're first starting and really haven't cultivated that sphere of influence yet. When people see the drive that you have to get out of your shit job, you have an underdog image and they pull harder for you.

  • fight &fun

    very helpful video..i join a real estate business before 1 month and hope will do work with full heart according to your advice boss…

  • Gameplay King

    hey I'm 28 and I really would like to get started in real estate can you give advice please I really like your video here thank you

  • Extended Stay Tucson

    #Mark Ferguson – InvestFourMore That helps, but you still have to make calls and might have to go to closings earlier. @ericrivera1998

  • Thomas Harpole

    Great video Mark. I'm curious if a real estate agent could work full-time, but take a month or two off during low-season. Let's say you've worked very hard to the point where you can sell a couple 400K family homes and net ~20K in commission two or three times a year. If you're a bachelor and are content with a 50-60K/year salary, would it be possible to set your things aside (assuming you don't have any deals that are pending) and pause for a month or two, and travel elsewhere? I've been involved with international charity work and education, and I would hate to rid myself of that life if I were to jump into real estate. Just inquiring if it's possible to integrate these two types of lives, as long as you work full-time and bust your hump when you return home. Thanks.

  • Kinko Sam

    I am finishing my real estate certification. does income depend on your location? Also I don't mind making $15000 my first year. As long as it gets me going. What books or videos you recommend that will guide new agents to the right track?


    Great info.Im 23 and I just passed my final exam and waiting to take my state exam next week. Im in New York City. Any extra advice?

  • Mario Lorio

    Mark I live in Arizona and I have watch a few of your videos, your videos are awesome thank you, I hope that you can send me an email that I left on one of your videos. God bless Mark…

  • Zac Crow

    They'll always (within our lives at least ) be able to grow more food…to recycle more metal for cars, bars, etc. "They" will never be able to make more land. you can make an artificial island but then that's astronomical real Estate anyway so it's an outlier anyway 🙂

  • David Owens

    Speaking of competition. When my wife was about to start her photography business in Austin, TX, she was concerned about there being so many other photographers in the area. I reminded her there were plenty of people who took pictures, but very few PHOTOGRAPHERS. I feel this is similar to real estate – plenty of people with licenses and a head shot, but few who are putting the time and effort into it!

  • omkar thite

    Sir I am 16 years old , actually wanted to discuss some of my doubts and about the career in person​ so is there any way I can talk to you like Facebook or Instagram ?

  • Gang gang

    on your first rental property, did you wait until it was paid off completely before buying your second rental?

  • dreamingcode

    Great vid Mark. As an investor i knew being an agent wasnt for me. Even 6 figures isnt enough. I love buy and hold or wholesaling. Part of being successful is picking a niche that fits your strengths and perfecting it.

  • Lexus Fox

    Thanks for this.
    I want to get into Real Estate, but everyone is very discouraging, they think it's a terrible career decision because it's all based on commissions for the most part. This reminds me that if I stay focused and work hard I can actually break into the industry and with a little more time and experience get where I want to get with my long term plans.

  • Mattioe

    Hi, I'm 18 and I just wanted to ask, how does someone like me start off ? I want to be very successful and I'm willing to do what it takes but I have no clue where to start or who to reach out to, I want to learn all the steps and put my everything into it but I'm simply clueless.

  • Safsum

    Anyone whos making money isnt going to make a stupid youtube video to tell you how to do it. dont listen to his bs its all bs you have to learn it for yourself from a book

  • nothingbutchill

    Is it possible to sell at multiple places at a time to make more money? like you just not sell only in Beverly Hills but also Santa Barbara, Santa Monica, Malibu, Orange County etc. to like sell 300 million a year in real estate?

  • John Taylor

    Thanks for posting this encouraging and positive message for those of us just entering the real estate business. Nice to hear something new and fresh aside and away from the naysayers. Like anything in life, those that succeed put in heart, hard work, and consistency to make it happen. Thanks for this, Mark !

  • D Wetick

    A typical Agent earns about $15k/ yr…and that's after a hell of a lot of work. A million dollars of real estate sales only equates to about $10k in your pocket.

  • Nicholas Ferrara, Esq., Realtor

    It's a sales job. The amount of money is endless, and the more you make the more motivation you have. Anyone that looks at those statistics and says "no that's not enough, I'll go elsewhere". They aren't the right people for the job.

  • Nolan Thibeault

    This was a really good video. I’m in High school and have a family member who’s a realtor. I think it would be very fun to be a realtor and I do think there is money in it. Luckily my family member said they will help me get into realastate

  • Blade

    Let’s say u sold a house for 1 million, what’s the actual Percentage do real estate agents get? This is confusing me a lot

  • James Walker for Real Estate

    I am getting my license in a few months and plan to work part time. If it works out well I would like to go full time and do what you do. Enjoy the channel and thanks.

  • Braden Garrett

    I can't believe that people get immediately turned off by just reading statistics on the Internet… Talking to experts is a heck of a lot more valuable than reading on the Internet!

  • 2303mitt

    I am very very very ok if I only can make 30k a year , I just want to get the fuck out from the regular job and just be my own boss , I really hate to deal with other person rules ( employer) and the drama that comes with it

  • Michael Lawrence

    Mark, thank you for sharing some of your industry's character traits. I was pleasantly surprised to see that you're working in northern Colorado – I called Fort Collins home for ten years. I'm 44, retired ceramic tile contractor looking to advance in real estate. One of my goals is to invest in flipping. I plan to take the classes and exam this winter. My question for you is this – How do I select a brokerage firm? And will a brokerage sponsor me in the classes and testing? And what books or learning resources could you recommend to me?

  • Matthew Ferguson

    Hey Mark, I’m a senior in high school and I was considering getting my real estate license over the summer and working as a real estate agent part-time in college. Do you think this would be a good idea? Or should I wait until I’m out of college?

  • Nikki Velazquez

    I've met a lot of terrible agents in Florida. They need to educate themselves better. I don't need a friend; I need a qualified agent! Luckily, we are in our forever house, so we never have to deal with that again.

  • Carl Vandenberg

    My parents were investing quite a bit in real estate so my Mom got her broker's licence in the mid 80's. My dad wanted to get his but he was sight handicapped, so I drove him to the classes. It was about a 30 minute drive each way and I was volunteered to take him, so I figured I might as well just take the class too. Me and Dad went to take the state Broker's exam and he passed but I didn't (to be honest I didn't study much for it at all). I retook it after studying harder on the law (the part I failed) and passed it easily. So at one time all 3 of us had our broker's licence at the same time LOL! My mom was the only one who actively worked in the business and she did quite well at it.

    I let my licence lapse after a few years as I started pursuing my Class A PGA professional certification, which is all I ever wanted to do. If you think the statistics for those taking the real estate licencing exam is bad you should see the stats for those taking the PAT (playing ability test) that you need to pass before you can get into the PGA program. Back when I took it only about 10-15% of people passed it. Luckily I passed it on my first try and had the 4th best score out the 100 players who took it (14 passed). I ended up working in the business as an assistant professional for several years before one of the members at the club I worked at made me a job offer I couldn't refuse working in the pharmaceutical industry.

  • Paul Argueta

    Great information. The key is executing and taking action. Too many people watch and do little to nothing with the information.

  • Valerie Clemens

    Excellent — I agree. I think there are quite a few amateurs in real estate sales. It's like anything else, it takes some training and a lot of commitment.

  • Tammy Hensley

    I make over 100k a year in Real Estate. I have tried to mentor a few people but they don’t enact what I tell them. I won’t mentor again.

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