What to Wear to Work for a Real Estate Job

Young Family with Realtor in Front of New Home
Ariel Skelley / Getty Images

As you begin a new career as a real estate agent, you may not be sure what to wear to work. Dressing appropriately is important for almost every job in which you work with clients in a professional setting.

What you wear to your real estate job may vary depending on what you plan to accomplish that day and where you will be working, but you should always dress in a neat, clean, and professional manner.

Real Estate Work Clothes Depend on Location

What you'll wear to work for a real estate job will depend on where you work. If you're working for a high-end realtor in a major city, for example, the dress code will be more formal than for real estate offices in a beach or ski resort area. Dress codes are typically more casual in smaller towns and rural locations as well.

What's most important is to wear clothing that's a fit for the market you're working in. It's also important to be yourself, so your clients are comfortable with you and your brand.

City vs. Rural Locations

The way you dress may depend a lot on the area where you work. If you work in a larger metropolitan area, you’ll want to dress in more formal business attire on a daily basis, compared to working in a small rural town, where you may dress in a more relaxed fashion.

For example, in a highly visible position in a larger city, you’ll need to dress the part even if you have a light schedule. Although you may not be meeting with any clients on a particular day, your colleagues may be, and it's important for the entire staff to project a competent but conservative image.

Vacation Destinations and Small Towns

For realtors in smaller towns and in locations that are vacation destinations, more casual attire is appropriate. Dressing too “professionally” may be off-putting in some areas—you probably don't want to show farmland to clients while dressed in professional attire.

If you’re not sure how much to dress up, you can ask your new boss or check around with other people who work in the same area.

When You're Meeting Clients

What's the best attire to wear when you're showing properties or meeting clients in the office. As with the location where you work, it depends.

Business Attire

If you’re meeting clients or showing properties, you may choose to dress in business attire, although it depends on where you’re working. For men, this means a suit or dress slacks and a jacket, button-down shirt, tie, dark socks, and dress shoes. Make sure your shirt is pressed, and your suit or slacks isn't wrinkled.

For women, a skirt or pantsuit, conservative dress with a jacket, or dress skirt or slacks with a blouse or sweater, and a coordinating jacket, hosiery, and closed-toe pumps are appropriate. Jewelry should be kept to a minimum and match the clothing you wear.

Business Casual Attire

If you're in a vacation resort area, more casual attire is the norm. For example, if you're showing condos in a ski or beach town, business casual or even casual attire is more typical.

In a small rural town, khaki pants and a plain shirt might be fine—especially if you’re showing farms, ranches, or wooded areas where business attire might seem to be uncomfortable and not functional. However, when you’re in the office, you may need to dress up a bit more.

Of course, even if you work in a small town, rural location, or resort area, you want to look neat. Business casual or casual clothing should be clean, well-matched, and in good condition. There’s never a good reason to wear clothing that’s in need of repair.

Office Clothes for Real Estate Workers

If you’re spending the day in the office doing paperwork and making follow-up calls, you can often wear business casual attire.

What to Wear in the Office

Business casual for men encompasses dress slacks or chinos, button-down shirt, dressy polo shirt, jacket optional, dark socks, and dress shoes.

For women, business casual means wearing a skirt or dress slacks, blouse, sweater, or twin set. A jacket is optional, but hosiery and closed-toe pumps are always acceptable. In some cases, wearing plain dress pants, a shirt or blouse, and flat shoes is fine.

What Not to Wear

Avoid jeans, sneakers, and sweatshirts unless you are specifically told that they are acceptable or you're in a casual work environment. Even then, it's better to wait until after you’ve been there for a while and have noticed how predominant that kind of dress is. For the most part, it’s almost always better to dress up rather than dress down.

Whenever you’re not sure how to dress, it’s best to ask your manager or co-workers so that you dress appropriately.