Real Estate Agent Salary and Jobs in North Carolina

By Ciprian Morariu Published: June 7, 2024

Real Estate Agent Salary in North Carolina

Do you wish to pursue a professional career in the dynamic, fast-paced, and exciting world of real estate? 

If yes, then working as a real estate agent in North Carolina just might be what you need to build a thriving career. 

Did you know that the average annual real estate agent salary in North Carolina is around $100K? 

Imagine earning a six-figure income and enjoying extra perks while helping people achieve their homeownership dreams. 

It’s the dream career many want and it could be yours once you acquire a real estate license in North Carolina.  

But how do you go about getting one? Apart from fulfilling a few basic requirements, go through a 75-hour North Carolina real estate license course from a state-approved provider. Next appear for and pass the licensing exam. That answers your question of how to get a North Carolina real estate license.

From flexibility to financial freedom, a career in real estate is appealing more than ever for anyone interested in becoming independent and self-reliant.

If you are considering a career in North Carolina real estate and want to learn more about how much agents get paid in terms of commission and other earnings, this article is for you. 

Making a career choice is an important decision and you must be aware of the earning potential before starting on a professional path. 

To help you make an informed career decision, we have put together this in-depth guide which will give you a comprehensive overview of how much money real estate agents make in North Carolina. 

Plus, you will also learn about what types of real estate jobs you can pursue to fulfill your career ambition.

How much do Real Estate Agents make in North Carolina?

Average Real Estate Agent Salary in North Carolina

One of the most commonly asked questions by aspiring real estate professionals is - how much do real estate agents make in North Carolina?

Although there is not a single answer to this question, you can get an estimate of the average earnings based on industry statistics and employment data. 

Generally, real estate agents working in North Carolina’s market make around $98K every year as a base salary. 

Note that this data is derived from surveys and research conducted by job sites and bureaus and is subject to change. 

It is important to add that many agents choose to work part-time in the industry. For them, the average annual salary is around $55K. 

Factors that Affect Real Estate Agent Salaries in North Carolina

Many factors collectively determine the average real estate agent salary in North Carolina.

Let us start with the basics first - how do real estate agents earn money? 

A real estate agent helps clients buy, sell, or lease properties. When they help close a deal or complete a real estate transaction, they get paid in terms of commission. 

A commission is a standard percentage determined by the state and federal authorities and real estate agencies. 

Usually, the average commission rate in the U.S. varies between 5 to 6 percent of the property’s selling price. 

Agents are legally allowed to negotiate their commission earned as part of a real estate deal. 

The final commission earned by an agent varies based on many factors, some of which include: 

  • The experience and expertise of a real estate agent
  • The educational qualification of an agent
  • The market’s average commission rate
  • The selling price of the property
  • The services offered by an agent
  • The negotiation skills of a real estate agent

Comparison of Real Estate Agent Salaries in Different Cities in North Carolina

According to the industry standard, the current agent commission varies between 2 to 5 percent of the property’s final selling price. 

Similarly, the salary of a real estate agent also varies based on the region, city, or neighbourhood of their practice, 

In North Carolina, highly sought-after, popular, and high-demand places like Charlotte, Wilmington, and Asheville are filled with luxury, premium properties. Working in such regions can help you land a higher salary and commission in exchange for your services. 

If you are wondering which are the cities with high-paying real estate jobs in North Carolina, here’s a summary: 

  • Charlotte: Average base salary of $123K annually
  • Wilmington: Average base salary of $115K annually
  • Winston-Salem: Average base salary of $94K annually
  • Durham: Average base salary of $155K annually
  • Cary: Average base salary of $127K annually
  • Raleigh: Average base salary of $125K annually
  • Asheville: Average base salary of $105K annually

If you are interested in working in a strong real estate market, listed above are some of the suitable options for you. 

Next, let’s take a look at the typical commission (estimated at 5.5 percent) you can earn while working in any of the most popular and large cities in NC. 

  • A $400K home in Charlotte, NC home will get you $22K in commission.
  • A $430K home in Raleigh, NC will get you $23K in commission. 
  • A $425K home in Durham, NC will get you $23K in commission.
  • A $276K home in Greensboro will get you $15K in commission

Overall, considering the median selling price of $300K for a North Carolina residential property, you can expect to earn around $16 to $18K in commissions. 

How much commission does a Realtor make in North Carolina?

Overview of Real Estate Commission Structure in North Carolina

Curious about the real estate commission in North Carolina? Let’s give you a detailed rundown. 

Typically, the property or home seller is responsible for paying the commission for a real estate agent’s service. 

Homeowners cover this cost mostly by including the fees as part of the final sales price or by covering the costs from the proceedings earned by the sale. 

The final commission for the real estate transaction is split equally between the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent. 

As per the state’s average, a seller’s agent makes around 2.8 percent whereas a buyer’s agent takes around 2.6 percent of a property’s final selling price.

The final commission rate is decided and agreed upon as soon as a listing agreement is formulated. Broadly, the commission in real estate can be classified into three types:

  • Fixed Commission: 

Under this structure, the seller’s and buyer’s agents are paid a fixed amount in exchange for their services. 

The commission rate is usually pre-determined by the seller and agreed upon by the agent or broker as part of the real estate deal. 

This commission structure is often favored for its predictability and transparency among all parties.  

  • Percentage-based Commission: 

This commission structure works on a fixed commission percentage determined based on the basis of the final selling price of a property. 

Generally, agents and brokers make anywhere between 5-6% of the final selling price, therefore, this is one of the most common commission methods in the industry.

Percentage-based commissions can vary depending on various economic, demographic, and market forces.

  • Hybrid Commission: 

This commission structure brings together a cross between fixed and percentage-based commission payout. 

Hybrid commissions are quickly emerging as the preferred structure for both clients and agents.

In this model, agents and realtors operate in an incentive-based way where they are promised a fixed commission and a variable component on top which can be earned in the event of exceptional benefits for their clients. 

Next, let us walk you through how the commissions work for both seller and buyer agents. 

A listing or a seller’s agent is responsible for helping property owners find potential buyers for their homes. 

Listing agents perform a range of duties and tasks such as determining listing prices, conducting home inspections, and negotiating with potential buyers to secure the best value for their clients’ property. 

A buyer’s agent is also responsible for completing a list of responsibilities to help their client a suitable property to match their needs and budget. 

Another important factor to note is that if you are a real estate agent working under a brokerage firm, then you will have to agree to a 60/40 or a 70/30 split between the brokerage and the agent.

This means both the seller’s as well as the buyer’s agent will split their earned commission with their sponsoring broker. 

Let’s give you an example to better understand how the real estate commission structure works in North Carolina. 

Say you help sell a property at a listing price of $300K in NC and earn a net commission of approximately $17K on the state’s average of 5.5 percent. 

Next, let’s assume a 70/30 commission split between the agents and their sponsoring brokers. 

With these estimates, the real estate agents representing the seller and the buyer will each earn around $5.7K approx. 

Whereas, their respective brokerage will earn around $2.5K in commissions as part of the agreement.

Factors Influencing Realtor Commission Rates in North Carolina

If you are keen to learn more about how much commission does a realtor make in NC, then it is important to understand the underlying factors influencing the commissions.

  • Location of the property: Real estate is all about location and based on where the property is situated, its price and value can increase or decrease. For agents, this means that highly popular, well-connected, posh, and exclusive regions and properties sell for higher prices, resulting in higher commissions. 
  • Market outlook: During a real estate boom, buyers flock to invest in properties and the demand reaches new highs. With a surge in demand, the need for real estate services also peaks, A positive industry outlook fuels higher commissions and earnings for agents and realtors. 
  • Type of Property: Any real estate property can be classified as real or personal property, and the type of the property is a major factor in determining the commission rates. For example - luxury real estate agents earn higher commissions than conventional residential agents.
  • Skill and Experience: Your commissions will directly or indirectly depend on your education, total experience, and overall skillset. Senior realtors and more experienced professionals command a higher commission in exchange for their valuable services.

It is important to highlight that real estate commissions are based on a market average, which itself is derived from various macro and microeconomic factors. 

In addition to the above, there are additional factors that might influence how much a realtor can earn in commissions in NC. Some of these include:

  • Average time on the market
  • Sale to list price ratio of a property
  • Total inventory in the market

This means that a realtor in North Carolina earns a variable commission rate which tends to fluctuate. 

With that said, due to North Carolina’s appeal and charm, the real estate market continues to enjoy steady demand. This gives real estate professionals multiple opportunities to close more deals and earn higher commissions.