Any agent that is currently licensed must have their license hung in their Broker's office by MD law.
The decision to advertise agents that are not actively selling to the public is the broker's decision.
J R from NYC answers are also other very good reasons why you see licenses for agents not actively selling.
Now, with that said, YOU as a Buyer or Seller have to decide "Do I want this person representing me in my future real estate transaction"? My thought? No! I want a REALTOR'S Full Time Attention to ME!
Agents are independent contractors, they are not employed by the place where they hang their license, they are self employed. An agent may work as a Realtor and then find the need to get a salaried job and want to keep their license, too. After all, contrary to what some people in the public may think, it does take work and expense to obtain and retain a license, so even though someone may have to take a salaried job out of necessity, or have to take a leave of absence from real estate in order to raise a child, they still keep their license. As for asking the broker why they keep them, well, why not? The agent may list a relative's or neighbor's home, and they will still be bringing money in.
Now that I have answered your questino to the best of my ability, I have some questions for you also (based on my years here I know I will probably not get an answer, but I may be pleasantly surprised).
What is your reason for asking this question Jimmy? How could this affect you? Has it created a problem for you?
I'm not sure as to why this would be an issue for you. If an agent is advertised as such but only transacts business for themselves you probably won't be dealing with them anyway.
I wouldn't sweat the small stuff. I'm sure there are people who have a drivers license but don't own a car.
Agents sign themselves up for Trulia. And Trulia does not have a screening process other than asking you to confirm you are licensed. Just because an agent is on the website doesn't mean they are a top producer or are experienced. As with the hiring of any professional you hire, you will want to do your own investigating to make sure that you are working with an experienced pro.
There are many levels in the real estate business. There are brand new agents, seasoned agents, top producers, and agents that have been in the business for many years and have an extensive clientele. Any number of reasons are possible for them becoming less active but agencies see the value of keeping these individuals on as referral agents because eventhough they may not be as active as the once were they are still bringing business to the agency.
Hope this is helpful.
....they say that not all Agents are Realtors...
As a Buyer or the Seller, I would certainly do some homework and interview more than one Agent before you commit to have them represent you.
Some Agents put their license in referral,this allows them to still benefit from a transaction.
In my opinion, Real Estate is like a Chameleon, always changing, new laws and new rules and the like, so the only way to practice Real Estate is on a full time bases.