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Stereotypes exist everywhere, and, rather than find out the truth, people are often content to accept rumors as fact, which yields poor results. Even in the real estate industry, many don’t understand the ins-and-outs of how the market works. Here are some of the top misconceptions that you may have heard about real estate agents, but more importantly, why they’re not actually true:


Myth #1: Agents always get a 6% commission.

False. Although some may believe that their real estate agent alone receives the entire commission after their selling their house, the truth is that the seller pays the commission. The commission is then split four separate ways: between the brokerages and the agents. To speak specifically to the percentage, it is not set in stone, and can even be negotiated, depending on the agency or individual.


Myth #2: Once you pick a real agent, you are fully committed.

Not necessarily! True, you as a seller sign a contract with the real estate agent and their brokerage but if things really aren’t working, you can potentially ask the agent or brokerage manager to release you.


Buyers, on the other hand, are rarely faced with a contract. The buyer’s agent isn’t even paid until their client settles on a home. In the event a buyer never purchases, the agent doesn’t get paid.


Take your time and shop around when it comes to real estate agents. It does get harder to separate from a contract the longer you work with an agent, so do be mindful of that, but signing a contract is not necessarily the be-all, end-all.


Myth #3: All agents are alike.

Not even a little true. Each agent has their own personality—they’re people, too, just like you, and like with any relationship, you either click or you don’t. And that’s not a bad thing! It just means that each agent has their own individual style, and it’s important to take the time to see which one matches your style before you decide.


More than just personality-wise, a great real estate agent can mean the difference between paying full price and getting a good deal. An agent who has lived locally for years certainly has more knowledge than someone new to the area, and it will show.


Like with picking a friend or romantic partner, you want your real estate agent to nurture your relationship and get you the best deal possible. Not every agent will do that for you.