- 65 percent of all REALTORS® are women, but women are less represented in leadership.
- In commercial real estate, women make up only 36.7 percent of the workforce.
- Female membership in NAR has grown from nothing to a majority, with seven women elected as NAR Presidents.
Since 1978, women have comprised the majority of REALTORS®, representing 65 percent of the membership in 2021. Women are particularly attracted to real estate’s flexible work hours and opportunities to help families. While there are many women in the industry, they are less represented in executive roles. Changing leadership demographics will require a commitment to developing and promoting female talent at all levels.
Compared to residential real estate, the commercial real estate sector is a vastly different situation for women. As of 2020, women made up only 36.7 percent of the CRE workforce, although the subsequent pandemic has stalled the career progress of many women in the industry. Especially in commercial real estate, there are a number of networking groups and organizations that provide forums for women to support each other and work together for gender parity.
When the National Association of REALTORS® started in 1908, the membership was entirely male. Women began joining shortly thereafter, but remained a minority in the organization for the first few decades. The Women’s Council of REALTORS® was founded in 1938 as the Women’s Division of NAR. Female membership in the association has grown steadily over the years. NAR has since seen a total of seven female Presidents – most recently, 2022 NAR President Leslie Rouda Smith.