How Much Are You Worth An Hour?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with 3:16 team REALTY ~ Locally-owned Prosper TX Real Estate Co. #9001154

We know that there are some "easy"/ slam dunk deals and there are some that we pray never happens. Then there are those we never get paid on (clients change their minds).

So, how much would you say that you (as a real estate professional) is worth?

I'd like to think I'm billable at $125/hr but the truth is that I'm not.

If I really put ALL the hours I put into the business and real-estate related, I'd be making less than minimum wage. Weekly reports, driving around communities, spending time with builders, taking photos are just some of the new activities that I do in addition to the normal "realtor stuff".

Some people question if I do too much and sometimes I wonder if I am not efficient enough. But hey, it gets me clients. So, what should I do?

This blog is inspired by someone who mentioned that you got to know how much you are worth. If I charge what I think I'm worth, I may be losing on every deal.

So how do you answer this question? You got to know HOW MUCH YOU ARE WORTH in order to charge it.....

Comments (44)

Aida Pinto
Independent Real Estate Broker - Los Angeles, CA
Real Estate Broker (562) 884-6196

Well sometimes you make more, sometimes you make less--that is why it's called "commission only"


Jun 17, 2008 07:23 AM
Jon Michael
DeGeorge Realty LLC - Long Branch, NJ

It does seem interesting to me that we are one of the only businesses out there that don't get an hourly wage.  The problem with putting a dollar ammount to the work we do is that there is no accepted model fordoing so.  Hahaha I with charging an innitial fee for future work, and a sucess bonus...that way we would no longer have to just take the hit for customers that arren't serious, and would allow us to work harder for the ones that are serious. 

Jun 20, 2008 05:13 AM
Scott Hoen - Carson City, NV
COO, Monarch Title Company 714-270-9607

The better question is how much is your real estate business worth that you are building?

Are you capturing all your contact information in a CRM package?  Your prospects, your contacts, past clients, geographic farm?

If you retire or when you retire, how much can you sell your business for?  If you have everything organized -- you could sell your business.  Think about the end game.  Make it a profitable day!

Aug 11, 2008 08:58 PM
Dale Terry
Yadkinville, NC

Great question and one with many answers.  The problem the way I see it is not how much we work for, it is that we will work at all without some guarantee of pay.  But as long as we have big franchises hiring anybody that just got a license to sit on phone duty and part timers just in it to make a few bucks, this industry will have no creditability

Aug 11, 2008 11:43 PM
David W. Bolick
Network Real Estate, Inc. - Little Rock, AR might make you feel better thinking you're making $300 to $400 an hour, but your DOCTOR IS making $300 to $400 an hour and that's EVERY hour he's "in" the office and you're sitting in that waiting room.  And ALL his overhead is built in that rate.

Factoring in all the late night calls, marketing time, driving time, dead end clients, etc. as everyone has pointed out....we're making less than minimum wage, BUT, we also have the flexibility of WHEN we work and not brow beat by some jerk boss.

Sep 07, 2008 04:38 AM
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Loreena:  Not all deals are the same.  These short sale listings have me making about $2/hour on my work.  A rental I make about $50/hour.  I like to think I'm WORTH at least $100/hour. 

Sep 07, 2008 04:44 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Loreena.. I was not a member back in Nov. 07, so this is why I am answering this now.  My clients I spend time with, I never get paid enough. But they are priceless in more ways than one.  Now the clients that call me at odd hours... 2am to see if the lightbulb in the refrigerator of the house they want to buy works or not.. these people I would like to bill at $525.00 an hour.

Sep 07, 2008 01:32 PM
John Petrella
Local Hawaii Real Estate - Hilo, HI

Aloha Loreena Yeo!

You are only worth as much as you ask for, and your clients will pay you what you are worth.

What I bill depends on which job I have to perform, how much work I do and when I expect the results to reasonably happen.

For example, my time is free to our agents regardless of how much work I have to do because the pay off is well trained agents who will be more efficient in the future and I receive the best performance out of them.

For those buyer deal seekers out there who will be writing many low offers in the hope of landing one, I contract at of 5% of the final sales price for land, 3% of the final sales price for a home plus $250 per offer plus $1.00 per mile traveled over 20 miles, plus $150 per hour over one hour of travel time.  These buyers will be working me very hard and I want them to take my time and effort seriously.  (Hawaii Island is 4,024 sq miles in size and has no super highways). 

Stop by, visit and talk story at our office on the Big Island of Hawaii!

John Petrella, REALTOR®  Hilo John Logo
ABR®, GRI, Principal Broker

Direct: 808.640.3953

Local Hawaii Real Estate
Honesty • Integrity • Commitment

159 Keawe St., Suite 1
Hilo, Hawaii  96720

REALTOR® is a federally registered collective membership mark which identifies a real estate professional who is Member of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® and subscribes to its strict Code of Ethics.

Feb 21, 2009 12:02 PM
Debra Cernick
DeShazer Ryan Realty - Libby, MT

Well BILLABLE hours is the question - if we got paid for every hour we worked (not just we the property closed- we can afford to work for less- if we had no expeneses to pay out. So the whole structure would need to change. To charge and not get paid unless it closes brings in another light.

I would charge $200 and hour but not on a commission type basis.


Mar 05, 2009 05:33 AM
Alice & Jim -- Team Hayes Realtors
Loveless Realty - Libby, MT
Double the Service - Double the Care!

I like the thought that we are priceless. I have no idea of how much I am worth an hour - I gave up hourly wages when I went into this business.

Mar 31, 2009 10:54 AM
Elizabeth Cooper-Golden
Huntsville Alabama Real Estate, (@ Homes Realty Group) - Huntsville, AL
Huntsville AL MLS

Loreena, I just ran across your old post and found it very interesting.  I used to figure my hourly rate each year.  I have NO clue now.  You've peeked my interest, so I'm going to have to keep track of my time again so I can find out!

Oct 18, 2009 01:20 PM
Will Nesbitt
Nesbitt Realty at Condo Alexandria - Alexandria, VA
Nesbitt Realty is a family-run brokerage.

The truth is that if I knew how much I was going to make before I got started in this, I wouldn't have taken this path. ;^)

Dec 24, 2009 10:30 PM
Lorraine or Loretta Kratz
Crescent Moon Realty, Inc. & Land N Sea Auctions. - San Marcos, CA
Certified Negotiation Consultants

I often hear agents talk about the ROI and we forget to factor in the many hours that we work that we do not take into account.

Jan 21, 2010 05:20 AM
Tami Behler
Prudential Bob Yost Homesale Services - York, PA

I find that on some transactions I make $200 per hour and unfortunately on others (usually smaller sales that require more guidance) I earn minimum wage.  It all averages out in the end.  

Mar 07, 2010 12:58 AM
cheryl finnegan
Coldwell Banker Select Professionals - York, PA

I know we should calculate how much we make, but to be honest with you it doesn't matter to me.  I can't imagine doing anything else.  Even on my worst days, I LOVE this job.

Mar 29, 2010 01:09 PM
Vince McEveety
Gilleran Griffin Realty - Sherman Oaks, CA

that is a great post with great thought provoking questions

what kind of work you do determines your hourly wage

Jan 14, 2011 05:25 AM
Laura Filip
Laura Filip Broker , Opening doors for All Seasons of Life - Whitesboro, TX
What can we do for you today?

Yes I understand what you are saying here, I really enjoy my job so the hourly wage is not what I am after, the accomplishment the job well done from my clients, the freedom to sleep in well maybe not sleep in because that normally does not happen lol.

Oct 25, 2011 02:14 PM
Laura Filip
Laura Filip Broker , Opening doors for All Seasons of Life - Whitesboro, TX
What can we do for you today?

I really do not look at it as a price per hour its not about it

Dec 14, 2011 05:48 AM
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

Value is not just in dollars in life. Trade outs of skills, experiences and lessons learned happen in the "all about others" for the greater good.

Jul 14, 2013 12:10 AM
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

Hourly wage is dangerous as an agent, broker can start to think everything they do is going to be paid for. It is a numbers game, taking all the ups and downs that can happen in stride. Enjoy the $35,000 commission on a big sale you list, sell and remember them when other deals you worked hard on die, get toe tagged and white sheet pulled up over them. Left for dead. Recognizing the box canyon, dead deals and letting go is an art. Like ER triage.

Aug 21, 2013 10:19 PM