Two Real Estate Brokers standing back to back

The Difference Between Commercial and Residential Real Estate Brokers

While many people have had some experience with a residential realtor, most people don’t typically work with a commercial realtor until they need a space for their business. There are similarities between commercial and residential real estate brokers, but there are also some very pronounced differences. Here are some of the ways that the two industries differ in and require different skills.

Types of transactions

Commercial real estate brokers are involved with buying, selling and leasing commercial properties or real estate, and it’s fairly normal for a commercial realtor to close several transactions every year. Residential agents on the other hand, don’t deal with leasing houses at all. All transactions made by residential realtors are sales.


Colorado requires the same real estate agent’s license for both residential and commercial agents. This means there is no special licensing required beyond the standard agent’s license to sell or lease commercial properties and real estate. Colorado realtors are licensed to perform either service, but their knowledge and skillsets are generally quite different.


There are many specialties within commercial real estate, particularly because there are so many types of transactions. There are land and income properties, offices, retail buildings, industrial buildings, single-family dwellings, and multi-family dwellings. There is even more specialization within specific industries, for example: warehouses, medical offices, retail space, etc.

By contrast, residential agents primarily focus on selling houses without any area of specialization. In some cases however, residential realtors may specialize in dealing with specific neighborhoods, selling luxury homes, or offering special representation to buyers or sellers. There is much more diversity within commercial real estate, and not nearly as much within residential.


Residential real estate transactions require many more disclosures than most commercial transactions. One possible reason for this may be the relative lack of education or sophistication on the part of a home buyer as compared to the level of experience that a commercial real estate buyer normally has.

Working with Tower Realty Partners

Tower Realty Partners specializes in finding and negotiating commercial real estate for healthcare providers in Colorado, including dental, medical and veterinary services.  Our expert brokers have personal experience working within the medical and dental industries, which allows even more insight to finding you the right space for your practice.  Let Tower help you find the best real estate option for your business, they manage all aspects of the process!  Contact us today to start your commercial real estate transaction.