I'm relatively new to Real Estate. I've been at this for about two years but in that time I have taken a large number of sales from the older established Realtors in town and made a good deal of money. How much? About $200K in 2007
Whats my secret? Hard work and imagination.
- Be available. This is pretty obvious but you would not believe how many calls I get because another broker in town did not answer their phone after 5:00 or on a Sunday.
- Answer your phone and check voice mails every half hour. Again this may seem obvious but you would not believe all the calls I get because of other agents who do not answer their calls or return voice mails.
- Answer your e-mail. I check email every 15 minutes and reply instantly unless I am at a settlement or out showing homes. I've stolen at least 15 sales this summer from Realtors who did not reply to an e-mail quickly enough.
- 70% - 90% of people start their search for real estate on the internet. If you think this means you should put all of your money into print advertisement and post cards you will be throwing your money away. I put about $40K into the web this year and only about $2000 into post cards and newspaper to keep my sellers happy.
- Don't do what everyone else is doing unless you want average results. If you want extraordinary results you need to be an innovator. You don't have to reinvent the wheel but you can "borrow" ideas from other industries and apply it to real estate.
- Don't expect your broker to supply you with all the leads you need to survive. I receive less than 5% of my leads from my broker. I don't sit floor duty and I don't sit open houses. Usually if I'm not out showing homes I'm sitting at home in my PJ's in front of the computer coming up with new tricks to draw more people to my websites.
- Hire a team. You can't possibly give your all to 10 different tasks. If you are the think tank and team leader how much sense does it make for you to run out to Kinko's for copies and fill flier boxes? Hire a high school dropout to perform these simple tasks for you and use your time for the important things like talking to clients and coming up with new ideas.
Ok, so enough of the basics. Let's get into a few actual tools of the trade.
Want your phones to ring more often and not loose calls to other agents in your office? Get your own 1 800 number. Do a google search for 1800 small business where you will find 100's of companies offering inexpensive solutions.
If you want your website to look and function just like every other Realtor in town just ask them who they used or look at the lower right hand corner of their website for a "created by" link. If you want a website that is different you might want to look at sites in LA, New York or Miami and hire the best you can afford. I recommend you don't use the same company as everyone else in your office or every other Realtor in town unless you want similar results, (but if they are making more than $100K a year you might want to use the same web designers)
It's been said 1000 times but PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE take more than one photo of your listings. Not only does it make it easier to sell the home and make the home owner happy it makes it easier for me to sell your home. A cheap $150 digital camera is all you need. Digital "film" is free and processing is instant. No more trips to the photolab or wasted time driving around town.
Once you have a great website only half the work is done. You still have to promote it or pay someone to do it for you. Spending time at websites like this will teach you many of those skills.
Hey the phone is ringing with some buyers I've got to run!!! Tune in next time for more.
Hard work pays off. I'm living proof.