Commercial Real Estate Agent Salary: How Much Does a Commercial Agent Earn? (2024)

There’s a reason the typical commercial real estate agent salary is six figures. The learning curve to become a commercial agent is six months to six years and comes with an expectation of increased education, said Thomas Riley, a New Hampshire commercial agent and 2018 treasurer of the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

“The training is intense,” Riley said. Commercial agents are expected to know about many more aspects of real estate than residential agents and may specialize in areas such as office, retail, and industrial development.

Commercial Real Estate Salaries in the U.S.

According to the latest income guide published by Colibri Real Estate, the average income of agents specializing in commercial properties is $193,644. The only other real estate niche that reported a higher income was condos.

Top 10 States With the Highest Commercial Real Estate Agent Pay

How do commercial real estate agents do in your state? Here are the states with the highest average pay for commercial real estate agents – according to Zip Recruiter.

State Average Pay – Yearly Average Pay – Monthly

New York





























Source: Zip Recruiter February 2024

More Income Means More Hours and Higher Demands for Real Estate Education and Training

With the higher demands for education and training, commercial real estate agents can expect to earn almost twice what residential agents earn. However, they must work longer hours to achieve those increased commissions.

Shan Zaidi, a commercial broker in Texas, has been in the business for six years, at it full-time for the past three. Working part-time is rare among commercial agents. The majority of REALTORS surveyed worked at least 40 hours a week.

Agents who worked less than 20 hours reported a median annual income of $111,361, and those who worked 60 hours or more earned $185,961.

Zaidi said his background in investments, acquisitions, management consulting, and as an analyst helps him as a commercial broker. Finance and marketing degrees are also valuable because the job requires an understanding of underwriting, lending, tax ramifications, and the ability to communicate effectively with the buyer and seller. Sixty-eight percent of commercial agents have a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Riley recommended that commercial agents start in residential real estate and learn sales, business, people, and communication skills.

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Specialize Your Real Estate Niche to Earn More

In our recent salary survey, we discovered that specialization pays off. As people enter the real estate profession, they usually pick an area or two to grow their expertise. This chart shows typical specialties and their associated earnings—including that of commercial agents.

With the Commercial Real Estate Salary Come Fewer But Bigger Deals

Unlike residential real estate agents, who may run multiple listings and show properties every weekend, Zaidi said that commercial agents tend to focus on a few deals for several months. Commercial real estate deals tend to be larger than residential deals and take longer to close. One or two multi-million-dollar commercial deals every year or so can provide enough income for several years, he said.

Riley says those working with a real estate brokerage may receive a straight commission or a stipend toward the commission. He said those who work in-house for large enterprises may be given a commercial real estate agent salary and commission.

NAR reported that most members also earned some personal income from commercial real estate investments.

Some of the challenges of the commercial real estate job today include pricing issues and fluctuating interest rates. Zaidi said that the value of the property drops as interest rates rise, which can cause deals to fall through.

Still, Riley says it’s a great industry and can be very lucrative. “Knowledge is the key.”

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