by Deana Wilson, GRI-Broker-Eagles Academy of Real Estate Director.
Individuals get in real estate for the wrong reason and they believe that being successful is easy- “If they are successful at this I certainly can be” or they are enamored with shows like HGTV and they just “love looking at houses”. They don’t realize they are starting a new business based on commission sales, not just a new job. They have not planned for living expenses during their start-up period or they don’t plan for those slow times. Most new real estate agents need at least 6 months of living expenses to get started. Remember, this is a business, not a hobby and each new licensee is one additional competitor in the industry!
Are you interested or really committed? When you own a business, you will work longer hours. Real estate is no different. Evenings and weekends are when most buyers and sellers are available. Clients expect you to be available at their beck and call and if you are not, they will move on to someone who is. The good news is you will get paid based on what you close. The bad news is you will get paid on what you close. Are you willing to face that reality?
Lead generation is the number one skill an agent needs to learn. Most don’t know how to generate leads or worse, they don’t want to ask people for business. They think they can be “secret agents”.
The second skill, and one that goes hand-in-hand with lead generation is marketing-how and where. Marketing is not bragging about your past sales, if you have any, but should bring value and support that you are the local expert that they can turn to when it is time or when the next house goes on the market in the neighborhood.
No plans or goals: how do you transition from a 9-5 job where your day is planned out by someone or something else to no schedule, no tasks and nobody to tell you what to do? It’s not only important to have plans and goals but those plans, and goals must be realistic, achievable and designed around lead generation.
How much money do you need to make?
How many closed deals will that take?
How many leads will I need to get to those closed deals?
How much prospecting will I have to do daily to get that money I desire to make?
Picking the right company or broker is also very important to a good start. This is YOUR business under the umbrella of a brokerage company. If you must restart with a new brokerage, your company essentially also must restart.
Make sure you know all you can know about a brokerage company before joining forces.
What is their market share, what support will they give a new agent, what are their fees, what lead generation tools are available to you, will they give you a mentor, what is their reputation in the industry and in the market? What is their office culture?
Talk to the staff and other salespersons at the office to find out how long they have been there, how they feel about the company, and how much turnover do they notice and why.
In the end this is your business and you must pick the right people to work with, expect to work longer hours, and know that you are in charge of your success.
For more questions to ask, be sure to check out our “Questions to Ask When Interviewing With Brokerage Companies” guide.
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