Q. What and who is a real estate professional?

A. Real estate professionals go by a few different names, although the distinction shouldn’t matter much to you, the seller. The only caveat here is to make certain the broker or agent you choose to work with is a licensed real estate professional.

All real estate brokers and sales agents are licensed and regulated by the state. Most states have laws that require brokers and agents to post their licenses in a visible spot in their place of business.

While most large firms and franchises (like RE/MAX, Coldwell Banker, Century 21, and so on) follow the law and do not hire people as brokers or real estate agents who have not passed the state licensing examination, this sort of thing apparently continues in some smaller, neighborhood firms.

Working with a broker or agent who is not licensed by the state, ask to see a copy of his or her license. Or you can call the state agency that regulates real estate licenses and inquire about the status of your agent’s license

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