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Personal and Business Banking

10.  Working with an Agent or Real Estate Broker

Home Buying Guide

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10.  Working with an Agent or Real Estate Broker

A real estate agent is a person who is trained to sell real estate. Agents can be either a broker or a sales associate. Brokers and sales associates are licensed by the state and must meet specific education and experience requirements to receive a license. A broker’s license permits them to conduct a real estate business and negotiate transactions for a fee. Sales associates work under the direction of a broker.

REALTORS® are members of the National Association of REALTORS® and must subscribe to its strict Code of Ethics. Less than half of all licensed real estate agents are REALTORS®, and there are many good, experienced, ethical agents who are not REALTORS®. Your aim should be to find an experienced, reputable agent that has the knowledge of the areas in which you’re shopping and who is a good match for you. That means you may need to interview and check out more than one agent.

Be sure to consider using DCU Realty for your agent needs in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

REALTOR® Related Terminology

Here are brief descriptions of various terms and designations that you may see associated with a REALTOR®.


    These persons are usually the owner, partner, or corporate officer of a real estate firm. They must be actively involved in the real estate profession.


    These persons are actively involved in the real estate profession but are usually affiliated with or employed by a REALTOR®.

  • ABR – Accredited Buyer Representative

    These persons have passed the Real Estate Buyer's Agent Council (REBAC) ABR course and provided documentation of buyer agency experience.

  • ABRM – Accredited Buyer Representative Manager

    These persons have passed both the REBAC ABR and ABRM courses, and provided documentation of management experience.

  • ALC – Accredited Land Consultant

    These persons have specialized in one of 5 land brokerage areas: farms and ranches; undeveloped tracts of land; transitional and development land; subdivision and wholesaling of lots; site selection, and assemblage of land parcels. Completion of specific REALTORS® Land Institute (RLI) courses and extensive experience is required.

  • CRB – Certified Real Estate Brokerage Management

    These persons have completed the Council of Real Estate Brokerage Managers educational and professional requirements in brokerage management.

  • CRS – Certified Residential Specialists

    These persons have completed advanced training in selling residential properties. They must also have extensive experience. Council of Residential Specialists

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