Real Estate Agent Salary in California

What You Could Earn As a California Real Estate Agent

If you want to get a sense of how much money you can make as a California real estate agent, it is a good idea to understand the average real estate agent salary in California.

It’s important to note that real estate salary or income depends on factors such as:

  • the number of years you’ve been in the business
  • your niche or specialization
  • the amount of competition in your area
  • the number of hours worked per week
  • your commission rate split as outlined in your brokerage agreement

Luckily, you can control all of the factors outlined above.

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In general, the longer you stay in the California real estate business, the more money you make. Likewise, the more hours per week you work, the more money you can expect to make over time. Also, in the same way that a lawyer can choose his or her legal firm, you can choose your sponsoring brokerage firm. While commission split may be non-negotiable, there are other benefits that brokerages can supply, such as health benefits, retirement plans, free continuing education and/or professional development to name a few. If you are unhappy with your brokerage, you can always change brokerages or start your own LLC.

Just like every business, there are factors that influence yearly income that you can't control, namely local and national economic trends. However, while the real estate business can be somewhat volatile as a result of these trends, there’s also no cap on how much you can earn.

To demonstrate how much a California real estate agent's salary can vary, we've outlined reported California real estate agent salaries based on specialization or niche (i.e. commercial versus residential) and location.

Niche or Specialization

commercial real estate buildings

There are many different types or categories of California real estate that you could specialize in —residential real estate, commercial real estate, luxury real estate, eco-friendly real estate, the list goes on and on. The reason why agents tend to pick a specialization and stick to it is that they are typically able to earn more compared to their non-specialized counterparts.

Specialization Avg. Salary
Residential real estate in California $91,455
Commercial real estate in California $95,383

Source: Indeed.com (Updated December 2019)

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Location

real estate location

Just like the weather, real estate is local. Where you live can have a big impact on what you earn as a California real estate agent. Typically, urban or suburban areas are comprised of more expensive homes, which means higher commissions.

 

Location Avg. Salary
California (State Average) $91,455
Anaheim $97,132
Bakersfield $69,454
Fresno $94,367
Long Beach $101,642
Los Angeles $93,063
Sacramento $89,725
San Francisco $90,444

Source: Indeed.com (Updated December 2019)

Note: The information in these tables is taken from Indeed.com and other salary comparison sites. The average salaries listed are not a guarantee of how much money you will make as a real estate agent in that area. We recommend you conduct more research in order to get a more nuanced estimation of the amount of money you can expect to make as a real estate agent based on your work experience, skills, and education level.

How much can you expect to earn as a California real estate agent?

In general, once you've established yourself as a full-time California real estate agent, you can expect to earn somewhere between $70,000 and $100,000 per year, depending on your location and niche. While this isn't a guarantee, it's also not a restriction. When it comes to California real estate, there is literally no cap on what you could earn.

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