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Differences Between a Realtor and a Real Estate Agent

We have often emphasized the need to find a Realtor in Los Angeles to rely on to guide you better through the lengthy and somewhat challenging process of buying a house in South Bay, LA County. One of the first questions that we come across is, what is the difference between a Realtor and a Real Estate Agent?


“Realtor” is a term that is a registered trademark of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). This means that only those  real estate agents registered with the NAR are allowed to be named ‘realtors.’ Moreover, only realtors have access to the MLS, have signed the association's code of ethics, and participate in regular training and continuing education.

Most real estate agents in California are part of the National Association of Realtors. If you come across an agent that you like and they do not have any affiliation with the NAR, we strongly advise you to ask them the reason behind it. Those who call themselves realtors will have proper access to not only an abundance of information but also have access to support networks as well as lists that those who choose not to join cannot access.

New members of the NAR must take the online professional code of ethics course and pass the exam. Active members are required to complete an online ethics course every four years and strictly adhere to the standards of practice.

The code of ethics is reviewed annually to reflect the most recent events of the law and real estate practice, and its fundamental message is to "treat all stakeholders honestly." We think you will agree with what this additional training and this code of ethics do and we would always advise you to choose a realtor over a real estate agent for this reason.


They are professionals who have passed their real estate exam and hold a license as a real estate agent. Their work is to assist and advise buyers and sellers in the sale and purchase of real estate in South Bay, LA County. If they only have a real estate agent license and are not designated as a realtor, they will not have access to the MLS and therefore will not have more access than you to the information available on the internet. Given the fact that MLS is considered to be the most comprehensive and the most definitive source of real estate data, this is a significant disadvantage in our opinion.

The agents cannot publish the sale information of the real estate in South Bay, LA County; they can only help and advice in their buying and selling. The job of an agent includes helping to organize inspections, negotiating for their interests, and structuring contracts, so the agent needs to have experience and knowledge in all of these areas.

Given these differences, we at Casa Bella Properties recommend always to hire the services of a certified realtor. A realtor is backed by the guarantee of industry knowledge and expertise through his certification. Whether you are a homeowner in South Bay, LA County looking to sell your property or someone who is looking to buy or rent a property, the smarter decision is always to have a realtor to represent you during the process.

Contact us to get in touch with one of our Realtors with great experience in the South Bay Area.

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