Redfin isn't a traditional real estate broker. So it should come as no surprise that Redfin doesn't use a traditional commission split with its real estate agents.
Instead, its full-time employee agents receive a salary, as well as benefits and opportunities for bonuses.
But you can also work with Redfin independently by becoming a Partner Agent.
Partner Agents work for other brokers. However, Redfin sends them referrals, for which they pay a fee of 30% of their commission. Keep in mind, as a Partner Agent, you'll also have to pay your brokerage its commission percentage.
In this guide, we'll dig a bit further into your two options for working with the company so you can decide if being a full-time Redfin realtor or Partner Agent is worth your time.
But remember that, no matter which broker or commission split plan you choose, the key to your success as a real estate agent is getting high-quality leads.
Agents in Clever's Partner Network receive qualified leads who are motivated to buy or sell. So you can focus on growing your business and earning more as a real estate agent.
» MORE: How to become a Clever Partner Agent
What is Redfin?
Redfin made a name for itself with its popular home search tool.
However, the company has expanded into two directions: it's a real estate brokerage that employs licensed agents and a referral service that connects buyers and sellers with Partner Agents.
Unlike other big-name brokerages such as Keller Williams, Century 21, and RE/MAX, Redfin is a discount brokerage.
Most sellers who use Redfin pay a reduced listing agent commission of 1.5%, rather than the traditional 2.5-3%.
However, that doesn't matter to Redfin's full-time agents. They earn a salary, rather than depending on commission.
(It's worth keeping in mind that those Redfin sellers still likely have to pay a commission of roughly 3% to the selling agent for bringing a buyer to the sale.)
On the other side of the deal, Redfin gives eligible home buyers a portion of the commission that it collects from sellers. (This offer is available only in select states, and terms and restrictions apply.)
» MORE: How does the Redfin Refund work?
How does Redfin pay real estate agents?
Most real estate agents who work with Redfin are full-time employees of the company. That means they pay income tax based on their W-2 earnings, receive paid time off and a bonus package, and have the option to enroll in a company 401(k).
In addition, Redfin employees can choose to enroll in the employee stock purchase plan.
Redfin reports that in 2020 the median agent salary, including bonuses and Redfin stock, was $112,200.
Stripping away the extras, ZipRecruiter reports that the average Redfin agent salary is currently $73,061 per year. However, as a Redfin agent, your salary will vary based on your market and experience.
When you close a sale with Redfin, you'll receive a transaction bonus. The size of the bonus depends on a number of factors, including the sale price of the home and whether the seller or buyer was a repeat customer.
Redfin estimates that, in your first few years working with the company, your take-home earnings will be comprised 30% of your base salary and 70% of transaction earnings.
That indicates base salaries tend to be low at Redfin.
Agents who reach certain professional goals earn higher base salaries.
In addition to the base salary and transaction bonuses, Redfin offers its full-time employees a healthcare package, paid leave, parental leave, a 401(k), and the opportunity to buy Redfin stock.
The company pays out $20,000 in bonuses to each agent yearly.
Redfin agent pros and cons 👍/👎
👍You get paid a salary no matter what
No matter how small your base salary, you'll still receive it in slow months when you close zero sales.
👍You receive benefits
Redfin offers $20,000 worth of benefits to its full-time employees per year.
👍You're part of a team
Redfin agents are part of a real estate team that divvy up the work. So you don't have to worry about marketing, paperwork, legalese, etc.
👎Your career growth is limited
Once you become a Redfin employee, you’re limited to the projects that the company assigns you.
👎You lose independence
Many enter the real estate business to work autonomously and be in control of their lifestyle. This may not be possible when you’re hired by the company as an employee.
Redfin Partner Agents
If you don't like the idea of becoming a full-time employee or already work for another brokerage, you can opt to become a Redfin Partner Agent.
Redfin's Partner Agent program is a lead referral service.
When you sign up, Redfin will send you client referrals. You're welcome to charge these referred clients your standard commission rate, rather than Redfin's 1.5%.
In return you'll pay Redfin a referral fee of 30% of your commission. You'll still need to work out your typical commission split with your broker.
Say you usually have an 80/20 commission split deal with your broker, in which you keep 80% of your commission and pay the office 20%.
If you close a sale as a Redfin Partner Agent, Redfin will take another 30% of your commission, leaving you with only 50%.
The downside to being a Partner Agent is that the company tends to refer clients only where it can't handle customer demand or a house is below its minimum price requirements.
This puts a cap on the projects you can work on as a Redfin Partner Agent — both in terms of volume and income.
Redfin commission FAQs
Do Redfin agents get paid commission?
Not technically. Redfin agents receive a base salary. However, upon closing a sale, agents do receive a transaction bonus. The amount you receive varies depending on the price of the home, your tenure with Redfin, and whether your clients are repeat customers.
What is a Redfin Partner Agent?
A Redfin Partner Agent is an agent who works for another broker but uses Redfin as a referral service. Partner Agents can charge their customary commission, rather than Redfin's discounted 1.5%. However, they do have to pay a 30% referral fee.
The bottom line
If you prize the stability of having a steady salary over the freedom and high earning potential of being, you might consider becoming a Redfin full-time agent.
However, it's not the only option.
Clever recognizes that real estate agents see themselves as business owners and like the independence the job brings. The Clever Partner Network is a way for agents to realize their goal of generating consistent high revenues without giving up their autonomy.
Clever works only with independent real estate agents, so we channel all listings to Clever Partner Agents. We don’t have agents in our employ who we give first preference or big ticket sales.
Once part of the Clever Partner Network, we will send you a steady stream of clients, helping you increase brand awareness and generate more referrals for the future.
» MORE: How to become a Clever Partner Agent