This is a great blog for all potential real estate agents to read.
I have a friend at my brokerage who will not learn new agents' names until they have been with the company for at least a year. I thought this was a bit cold and asked him why and he told me that since 90% of them won't last, it was just not worth his time to learn their names. I started to pay attention to how long the average agent lasted...and I think fruit flies might have greater longevity. For those of you thinking about entering the real estate profession, ask yourself the following questions:
1. Do I have enough liquid assets to support 6-12 months of living expenses as I get my business up off the ground? It can take a painfully long time to build up your business in real estate. You need to be prepared to draw on other sources to pay your bills.
2. Do I really understand the fees and expenses associated with being a Realtor? Many agents do not have a comprehensive understanding of all of the expenses associated with this profession. There are local, State and National board of Realtor fees, MLS fees, continuing education fees, brokerage fees, etc. These are the minimum fees required in order to stay in business. They must be paid whether you make a sale or not. Additionally, there are "discretionary" expenses...ones that you don't have to pay, but should think long and hard before you cut them out of your budget. For example, advertising fees, website hosting fees, postage for mailers, purchasing signs and riders, etc.
3. Do I have an ongoing thirst for learning? Real Estate is a complex industry and you will never run out of things to learn. You must commit to actively pursuing this profession by building your knowledge base.
4. Am I technologically "savy"? There are some agents who can get away without understanding social media, SEO and online marketing. However, these are usually agents who have been in the business for decades and have a vast referral base. If you are new to the industry, you must embrace technology in order to leverage it to your advantage.
5. Do I have the personality that will be driven to work hard and drive my actions, even though no one is holding me accountable? You are your own boss in real estate. You need to be the type of person who will develop a plan of action, follow it or modify things that are not working, despite the fact that no one is checking to make sure you are working on your career. In the early days, you may not have as many client responsibilities. This is a golden opportunity to build the tools and develop the skills that will make you successful.
If more agents would ask these questions of themselves, perhaps we would have less attrition and my friend could start to learn their names when they first arrive at our office.