Do you want to become a successful real estate agent because you believe it is the easiest career option to make quick money while enjoying freedom? Trust me, you are getting into a business for all the wrong reasons!
The real estate industry is highly competitive right now with 2 million+ agents operating in the United States itself. Therefore a new agent often finds it quite challenging to survive such a cutthroat competition.
Just to verify my point, I did a little bit fact check and found that almost 80% agents fail to survive after first five years. Not really good news for the new entrants who aim to become a successful real estate agent, huh! (Ref. links are provided at the end of the article.)
And yet, it is not completely impossible to become a successful real estate agent, even if you start from the scratch with limited resources!
Before I talk about the 7 tips, let’s check out what some of the top real estate agents are saying about their success.
How to Become a Successful Real Estate Agent: Effective Strategies Revealed by the Top Real Estate Brokers!
Ben Caballero is the number one real estate agent worldwide, as recognized by the Guinness World Records. Having sold properties worth $2billion+, his simple piece of advice can add real value to your business :
- Make it easy for your clients to do business with you
- And make sure they really like you enough to keep coming back to you!
Altman Brothers (Matt and Josh) have handled quite a few celebrity deals, like the $17.8 million Bel Air Crest property transaction of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West. They share this one tip:-
Don’t say no to your clients. Just try to work out a simple way to make it work. Don’t hesitate to break molds but make it happen!
Rochelle Maize, another top Beverly Hills real estate agent , reveals her modus operandi. She says, you need to embrace the rapidly-evolving market and the changing game.
So, let’s check out my 7 tips about how to become a successful real estate agent. I have worked out these tips based on strategies and suggestions shared by few more well-known realtors.
Learn the Basics From a Mentor or an Expert To Become a Successful Real Estate Agent
Apparently it might sound too simple but real estate business goes much beyond listing properties online and finding buyers/sellers. The entire real estate procedure demands lots of learning and skilful handling of each aspect.
As a beginner you may not have knowledge and expertise to survey a property and find its pitfalls or positive features. Its quite possible that you don’t know about property loans, mortgage, and title insurance. In fact you may not understand the technical terms mentioned in a property document!
This is why you need find a mentor who can be an established agent or a property consultant. When you get the opportunity to work with an expert agent, you get to learn all these technicalities.
However, don’t expect any remuneration as an intern. A busy agent might not be interested in hiring a newbie and teaching him/her all the secrets and pay for that too! And yes, don’t mind running errands for him initially, cause no mentor starts revealing valuable tips from the day one itself!
Once you start assisting a successful agent, you can study the past transactions. You can check what all documents were needed to close a particular deal. Such an exposure will definitely make you confident when it comes to handling a real estate deal on your own.
Can’t find a mentor? Consider joining a training program run by an established real estate broker or agent.
Prepare a Business Plan and Stick to it
“What plan? Making money from real estate is my only plan!” If this is how you plan to become a successful real estate agent, then better drop the idea now!
Just like any business, running a successful real estate agency demands a detailed planning too. You need to be very clear about few things:-
- Do you want to work with any established real estate company or plan to start on your own?
- Who are your target customers? e.g. you can chose to cater to first-time home buyers, or refurbished home sellers and buyers. Or you may decide to list luxury homes or waterfront properties only.
- What is the level of competition in your target market? Who are the top realtors operating in that space? Are there enough opportunities left in your chosen field?
- What type of services you plan to provide? Can you offer additional services like refurbishing an old property, researching a foreclosure property or helping the buyer with paperwork?
- Consider a SWOT Analysis. Analyze the strengths, weaknesses , opportunities and threats based on the research work you have done till now.
- Determine both short and long term goals.
- Define a timeframe to revisit your plan. For instance, you can decide to assess your business plan after every six months to know if the strategies are working or not.
Plan a Budget and Follow it Sincerely
While planning a business, you can’t overlook the financial aspects, can you?
Seriously , this is one of the key criteria to become a successful real estate agent, as revealed by some established realtors.
Those who are running their agency successfully, insist on setting aside at least six months of business expenses in a separate account. Why? Because it is realistically assumed that you won’t be able to earn any commission in the first six months, unless you are absolutely lucky!
To create a reserve fund, you need to determine the approximate cost of running the business on a monthly basis. In case you don’t have this surplus money in your bank, consider taking up a part-time or freelancing job to support your real estate business initially.
Commit to A Work Schedule- One of the Prime Criterion to Become a Successful Real Estate Agent
So you “WANT” to become successful, right? In that case, you need to commit yourself to success! You should prepare a work schedule and follow it without fail!
The reason why most new agents fail is because they are simply interested and not committed! However commitment doesn’t mean chasing leads 24×7. But commitment is about believing in your business mission and vision and staying true to the short and long-term goals.
Be realistic about preparing the work schedule, otherwise you may get burned out quickly.
Let’s assume your short term first six months’ goal is 2 appointments every week and one closing a month. Accordingly you can decide the work hours, based on the number of phone calls you need to make, and emails you need to send every day. Add to it the social media time, client follow-up time, internet research schedule, networking time, property visit with clients and other activities.
Focus on Team Building and Networking
Remember a real estate business is not about buyers and sellers only. But your “book of contacts” should include reliable appraisers, mortgage experts, loan providers, inspectors, real estate related legal professionals, interior designers, real estate investors, home remodeling experts and others.
As Ginger Glass, a celebrity real estate agent in L.A confessed, “There were clients I had 10 years ago circling back and rewarding me with referrals or listings.” (Ref. link is provided at the end of the article).
And yes, you need to network with other real estate agents too. When you strengthen relationship with fellow agents, that can help build up a valuable referral system.
However, networking is something which needs to be done prudently. You don’t expect people to provide you leads, unless you devote time to build up a relationship of trust with your network. Here are few tips of networking which can come in handy.
Pursue Every Lead Seriously But Be Ethical!
Jordana Leigh, a successful real estate professional who has represented some fine properties in L.A., says, “It’s better than waiting for those huge deals to come along.”
As I keep mentioning, the real estate industry has become highly challenging. There are new agents pitted against the expert ones. Thus in such a scenario, you simply can’t afford to turn down a lead because the property is too far from your place or the client is too tough to satisfy!
While going all out to secure new business, you should aim to set up an ethical business with a strong sense of purpose, which goes beyond earning quick bucks.
Trust me, your clients and contacts will respect you for that, and will keep coming back to you.
Be a Tech Savvy Realtor To Stay Ahead of the Game
It is indeed amazing that there are many successful real estate agents who still follow the conventional route to get business. It might have worked out for them but if you want to become a successful eeal estate agent amidst stiff competition then you can’t say “NO” to technology.
And by technology I don’t mean hosting a website only. As a tech savvy realtor you should know about the latest software and tools that successful real estate agents use. Here are few tools worth considering:
- Zillow is a premier platform to add your realtor profile and submit listings. All these you can do absolutely free!
- RealScout is a comprehensive tool to nurture leads by crafting awesome experiences for agents, and their clients.
- Cloud CMA is an excellent client engagement software which provides you with an in-depth market analysis which you can quickly send to your clients.
- Structurely is an AI empowered lead nurturing tool where a chatbot handles the initial client query. And after this initial communication, the chatbot Aisa schedules an appointment with the agent.
- Zumper is a great listing tool for agents who handle rental properties only. This tool is free to use.
- Placester presents you with customized real estate website solution with IDX integration and lot more features.
- KeyMe is a fantastic key copying software that relieves you of the hassle of getting a copy of the house key from the owner.
Besides these, there are many small business apps which real estate agents can use to streamline the entire business process.
And when you learn to apply technology the right way, you get more free time to generate new leads and close more deals every month.
If you are aiming to become a successful real estate agent then remember it won’t happen overnight. You should prepare yourself to face rejection and false promises. However, never stop believing in yourself and your abilities because hard work and persistence pays off definitely!