Realtor Vs. Real Estate Agent in Nigeria: Differences & Similarities

  | 4 min read
Realtor Vs. Real Estate Agent in Nigeria: Differences & Similarities

Most times in Nigeria we use the term ‘real estate agent’ more often than we use realtor but most people use them interchangeably which is the reason we are writing this post. The distinction between a realtor and a real estate agent might seem subtle at first glance. Yet, these terms carry nuanced differences that can significantly impact your home-buying or selling journey. Whether you’re a seasoned investor, a first-time homebuyer, or simply intrigued by the intricacies of the housing market, understanding the disparity between a realtor and a real estate agent is paramount.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the variances between these two roles, unraveling their unique responsibilities, qualifications, and the value they bring to the table. By the end, you’ll not only discern the disparities but also gain invaluable insights to navigate the real estate realm with confidence and clarity.

Real Estate Agent:

In Nigeria, a real estate agent is an individual duly licensed to represent clients – be it buyers, sellers, or renters – throughout various real estate transactions. With an intimate knowledge of the local property market, these professionals guide their clients through the intricacies of buying, selling, leasing, or renting properties. They offer invaluable expertise on property values, market trends, negotiation tactics, and the legal intricacies involved in real estate dealings.


A realtor in Nigeria goes beyond the basic role of a licensed real estate agent. They are distinguished members of esteemed professional organizations such as the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) or other recognized real estate associations. As committed professionals, realtors adhere to a stringent code of ethics set forth by their respective organizations, ensuring the highest standards of conduct. Continuously engaging in further education, realtors stay abreast of evolving industry trends and best practices, positioning themselves as trusted advisors in the dynamic realm of real estate.

Differences between Realtors and Real Estate Agents

Licensing and Membership:

Real Estate Agent: A real estate agent holds a license to facilitate real estate transactions, representing buyers, sellers, or renters. This licensure grants them the legal authority to engage in property dealings.

Realtor: A realtor is a licensed real estate agent who also holds membership in professional organizations such as the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV). This affiliation signifies adherence to a higher standard of ethics and professionalism.

Ethical Standards:

Real Estate Agent: While bound by legal obligations and ethical standards, a real estate agent’s commitment primarily revolves around fulfilling client needs and executing transactions efficiently.

Realtor: Realtors pledge to uphold a strict code of ethics established by their affiliated organizations. This code emphasizes integrity, honesty, and fiduciary responsibility, placing client interests above all else.

Continuous Education:

Real Estate Agent: Though encouraged to pursue further education and professional development, real estate agents may not be mandated to undergo continuous training beyond their initial licensure. This is also one of the New Year resolutions for real estate agents we listed earlier.

Realtors: Realtors are often required to engage in ongoing education and training to maintain their membership status. This commitment ensures they remain well-informed about industry trends, regulatory changes, and best practices.

Similarities between Realtors and Real Estate Agents

Market Knowledge:

Both realtors and real estate agents possess in-depth knowledge of the local property market. They stay abreast of market trends, property values, and neighborhood dynamics to provide valuable insights to their clients.

Transaction Facilitation:

Whether buying, selling, leasing, or renting properties, both professionals play pivotal roles in facilitating real estate transactions. They guide clients through the process, handle paperwork, negotiate terms, and oversee the closing process.

Client Advocacy:

Realtors and real estate agents alike prioritize client advocacy, aiming to meet their clients’ needs and objectives. They act as trusted advisors, offering personalized guidance and support throughout the real estate journey.

In essence, while the titles “realtor” and “real estate agent” may carry distinct connotations, their shared commitment to serving clients and navigating the complexities of the real estate landscape underscores their vital roles in the industry. Whether you seek the expertise of a realtor or a real estate agent, rest assured that both are dedicated professionals poised to assist you in achieving your property goals. Visit our dedicated page to see the list of real estate agents in Nigeria.

Christian Nduaguba