What is the Real Estate Commission in Washington, DC?


|10 min read

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Capitol Hill in Washington, DC

The average real estate commission in DC is 5.3%. This is lower than the national average of 5.57%. This information is according to a poll of 1,871 FastExpert agents. FastExpert is a real estate agent directory that allows you to compare local agents and find the best fit for your needs.

We are committed to providing you with not only the best agents in your area, but also with top news, insights, and resources so that you can make informed decisions about buying or selling a home.

In this article, we’re going to break down agent commissions, what agents must do to earn a commission, and how to find a real estate agent.

What is the Standard Real Estate Commission?

The standard real estate commission, also referred to as realtor fees, is typically 6% of the home’s sale price. The National Association of Realtors established a 6% commission rate in the 1950’s to create equity and fairness within the real estate business.

However, the commission rate can vary based on the location, type of property, and other factors. For example, in some areas, sellers may pay a higher commission to their agent in order to attract more buyers.

The typical commission is generally split evenly between the buyer’s and seller’s agents, with each agent receiving 3% of the sale price. However, in some cases, the realtor fees may be negotiable.

What is the Average Income of a Real Estate Agent in DC?

The average income of a real estate agent in Washington, DC is $96,182, which is about the same the national average. Agents with less experience earn closer to $87K and agents with more experience earn near $114K. Understandably, the agent’s experience, location, home price, and quantity of sales impact the real estate agent commission and income.

Comparable Salaries for Real Estate Agents

Washington, DC, professional real estate agents typically earn near the national average, but how does that compare to other major cities? The numbers change frequently, and some top real estate agents earn far above the national average. Selling Sunset has everyone dreaming of being a swanky real estate agent making millions. However, that’s more of a rarity than the norm. For a more realistic perspective, these major cities will give a picture of real estate agent commissions for each year.

  • Miami, FL – $116,901
  • Dallas, TX – $103,224
  • Los Angeles, CA – $102,901
  • New York, NY – $100,670
  • Chicago, IL – $79,026

Data taken from Indeed

What Do Agents Do to Earn a Commission?

So what do agents have to do to earn their commission? Well, first and foremost, they must find a buyer for your home. In order to do this, they will typically:

  • Advertise your home on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS)
  • Hold open houses
  • Show your home to prospective buyers
  • Negotiate on your behalf with the buyer’s agent
  • Help you navigate the closing process

Of course, this is just a brief overview of what agents do. In reality, there is a lot more involved in finding a buyer and successfully completing a real estate transaction.

The Duties and Responsibilities an Agent Owes You

The laws of the District of Columbia require that real estate licensees act in a fiduciary capacity when representing clients. This means that agents must always put their client’s best interests first.

In addition, agents must:

  • Seek a sale price that is acceptable to you
  • Disclose all material information about the property
  • Use reasonable care and skill when performing their duties
  • Resolve any conflicts of interest in your favor
  • Obey your lawful instructions
  • Account for all money and property received on your behalf

How Much Will You Pay in Commissions on an Average DC Home?

The median sales price of a home in Washington, DC, is $650,000. With a commission rate of 5.3%, the total real estate agent commissions will be $34,450. This is generally split equally between the listing agent and buying agent.

Typically the seller pays the entirety of the commissions; however, this can also be negotiated into the purchase price of the home. It’s important to work closely with your agent and understand what commissions you will be paying.

Ultimately, the split commission is sent to each agent’s real estate broker. Therefore, the $34,450 split means each brokerage receives $17,225. This sum is then split again, usually equally, but sometimes the broker or agent will receive a more significant share. If the sum in our example is split evenly, the buyer’s agent commission and the seller’s agent commission will be $8,612.50 each.

>>MORE: When and How Do Agents Get Paid?

Considerations When Negotiating Realtor Commission

Top agents advocate for their clients and provide a full-service experience from start to finish. While a discount company may seem attractive with lower realtor fees, the services are often reduced. It may result in a reduced sales price, less attention from the listing agent, or a longer time on the housing market. It’s important to note these considerations prior to the negotiating realtor commission.

How to Find a Real Estate Agent in DC

FastExpert can help you find the perfect agent for your needs. Finding an agent in DC is easy with our agent directory. Simply enter your zip code, and we’ll provide you with a list of top-rated agents in your area.

You can then read agent reviews, view listings, and compare agent commission rates to find the best fit for you. So, what are you waiting for? Get started today!

Real Estate Experts

FastExpert is a real estate agent directory that ranks agents by location according to client ratings and past home sales history. Our goal is to give you all the information you need to choose the right real estate agent for your needs. Users can search by specific traits that are important to them as well as see specific addresses of homes agents have sold in the past.

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