If Your Broker Didn't Teach You This . . . I Will

Commercial Real Estate Agent with Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker AZ BR 528507000

From the NAR 2018 Member Profile:

29% in the business less than 2 years!

"In 2018, there was a continued rise in new members of the National Association of REALTORS®, increasing from 1.22 million in March 2017 to 1.30 million in April 2018.

This is apparent in the data; those who had less than two years of experience was 29 percent in 2017. The median years of experience in real estate was 10 years. Additionally, tenure at firm was a median of four years again this year."

Also, same source: Thirteen percent of members (up from 12 percent) who have two years or less experience were under 30 years of age.

Lots of baby agents entering the ranks. And that's good. Fresh blood, new ideas to meet the demands of a growing demographic.

NOW . . . no offense intended, but all you need to do is open your FB to see that a lot of the kids were raised by wolves.

And there are a lot of either 'hands off' or 'sell sell sell nothing else just sell' brokers managing these fresh faces.

When I got into Arizona real estate coming up on 18 years ago, we didn't have 9-11 or a boom or a bust. I had a VERY hands on broker who told me things that no one else had. I'm grateful for that. Some of these things have nothing to do with real estate and EVERYTHING to do with real estate. And business in general.

What she told me, and what I also picked up along the way I will share with you youngsters and some of the old timers who also need it.


  • Have the money to survive for a year without a commission check.
  • Look AND SMELL GOOD. If your client can't stand to be in your midst, you're in trouble. Breath mints, clean smell with no heavy perfume and NO SMOKING! NOOOO VAPING! Leave those habits at home or for when you're done with meetings/showings.
  • You don't have to be a fashion plate, but again, clean and presentable. Leave excessive jewelry out. Be elegant and professional.
  • Learn to speak, write and especially SPELL. Sorry not sorry, but you will be judged on this.
  • You will need to be articulate but not talk over your clients.
  • Don't nervously chatter. Pregnant pauses in communication allow everyone to think.
  • SMILE and relax. There is nothing to be nervous about. People smell fear. Remain calm, no matter what happens.
  • Have tools handy to measure, repair, unstick stuff.
  • When you receive a contract, REPLY IMMEDIATELY: 'RECEIVED'.
  • When you receive communication from another agent (especially) or a consumer,  REPLY AS SOON AS YOU ARE ABLE. We have amazing tools for instant contact. Use them.
  • DO. NOT. YELL OR. ARGUE. With ANYONE. Listen and respond thoughtfully.
  • You are in this business to walk your clients through the most risky expenditure of their lives. Do not take this lightly.
  • NO high pressure, panic-selling or pretending others have interest that don't. Once you are perceived as a bully or liar, you're done. Memories are long!
  • Do what it takes to get along for the sake of the deal and your client, even if it means you will have to do more work. Let others be inefficient. You be the good egg.
  • Your vehicle needs to be clean. Make SURE you have good tires and AC at all times.
  • Respect your time. This will take learning. Others WILL test you.
  • IF YOU DO NOT KNOW THE ANSWER, FIND OUT WHO DOES--then REFERENCE THE SOURCE. Never guess, no matter how hard they press.
  • If you don't feel right about someone, don't work with them.
  • Set up your following day the night before. Don't rely on memory. Things get hectic. Stay in control of your daily tasks.
  • Meet new people every day.
  • Every day, learn something new about this business. Ask someone smart something, and write down what they say.
  • Every day, expect something great to happen. And every night, recall it and be grateful.


Anyone have more to add? You're welcome to!





Re-Blogged 6 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Susan Haughton 07/22/2018 12:08 PM
  2. Bob Crane 07/22/2018 01:41 PM
  3. Barbara Todaro 07/22/2018 01:44 PM
  4. Mott Marvin Kornicki 07/24/2018 10:54 AM
  5. Peter Mohylsky. Beach Expert 05/26/2019 04:36 AM
  6. Kris Collis, Associate Broker 11/16/2019 02:07 PM
Real Estate Best Practices
Bartender, Make it a Double

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Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I just <3 you Candice!  And seriously I knew I wouldn't have to explain it to you.

Jul 23, 2018 01:49 PM #31
Ron Aguilar
Continental Mortgage - Saint George, UT
Mortgage & Real Estate Advisor since 1995

Excellent list to remember considering I am a loan officer and not an agent. Thanks for your time

Jul 23, 2018 05:51 PM #32
Bruce Kunz
C21 Solid Gold Realty, Brick, NJ, 732-920-2100 - Howell, NJ
REALTOR®, Brick & Howell NJ Homes for Sale

Thanks for sharing this list Candice A. Donofrio . It's as important for "seasoned" agents to review as it is for "newbies". Great information!


Jul 23, 2018 06:34 PM #33
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

What is pertinent is always passed down so it can continue.... case in point

Jul 23, 2018 06:40 PM #34
Denise Gentile
Coldwell Banker Associated Brokers Realty - Menifee, CA
REALTOR , Riverside County

You were lucky to have such a wise Broker as a new agent that told you things you needed to do to survive the business. This is a great list offering words of wisdom for the new agents, as well as a reminder to the seasoned ones. 

Jul 23, 2018 09:35 PM #35
Jamie King
Hoty Enterprises, Inc. - Huron, OH
Sandusky, OH

Good stuff!

One more...remember you are the employee, not the employer. Your direction and response to offers, counteroffers, questions, etc. comes from the seller and buyer you are working for.

Jul 24, 2018 06:57 AM #36
Terrie Leighton
Ferrari-Lund Real Estate - Reno, NV
Reno Real Estate Agent ~ Selling Homes in Reno

Sadly, this list should go out to ALL agents, and not just the new 30 and under peeps. Thank you, Candice, for sharing a bit of what you learned from the NAR profile. Have a great day.

Jul 24, 2018 09:10 AM #37
AJ Heidmann ~ CRS
McEnearney Associates, Inc. - Alexandria, VA
YOUR Alexandria & Arlington, VA Real Estate Expert

Candace ~ A great list of behaviors for every agent to work by!  Maybe we need to a new Article in the Code of Ethics to capture these nuggets...

Jul 24, 2018 10:08 AM #38
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line

Great advice, not often taught by schools or brokers unfortunately. 

Jul 24, 2018 11:10 AM #39
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate

Excellent post as expected 

Jul 24, 2018 01:52 PM #40
Dora Griffin
D A Griffin Financial.LLC - Fort Thomas, KY
NMLS 6380

Glad to see this!  You hit a couple of things that I struggle with all the time. As a lender I get contracts where the agents have not filled out the contact info completely, or it is not legible.  And, I'm amazed that some don't answer emails. I'm running into this more and more and I'm puzzled as to why. It is so easy to reply, "got it" or "thanks". 

Jul 24, 2018 02:25 PM #41
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

This is an excellent blog!  The newbies are going to do things their way..and teach us older experienced agents as well!  Last week I was dealing with an agent who had his own brokerage, a very small firm I'd never heard of. He was in his 30s and dressed like he was going to do yard work.  I cringed--his buyers didn't seem to care.  Having high grooming standards reflects on your personality--in my opinion. Also--newbies need to have more than a year's cushion when starting out--imo.

Jul 25, 2018 06:11 AM #42
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Such stellar advice. Desperation leads people to make crazy decisions and other people can sense it too. Eeeks! Having plenty of resources is critical to any agent, and especially to those with a new pipeline of clients.  This list should hang above desks. :) 

Jul 25, 2018 07:30 AM #43
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude


This is outstanding advice, and not just for newbies. Some of the more experienced agents could use a refresher/reminder.


Jul 25, 2018 08:03 AM #44
Mary Jo Quay
EXP Realty - Minneapolis, MN
I Move You Home

Your broker was exceptional, and I'm guessing that he didn't take in anyone who fogged a mirror.  You can change your clothes, your hair, but your reputation follows you everywhere. 



Jul 25, 2018 06:25 PM #45
Kevin Mackessy
Blue Olive Properties, LLC - Highlands Ranch, CO
Dedicated. Qualified. Local.

Look and smell nice.  Funny that has to be said, but we had a showing agent who once wore way too much cologne that it followed him like a cloud.  You knew when he walked in to.  It was very unprofessional.  

Jul 26, 2018 11:20 AM #47
James (Jim) Lawson, DBA
DomainRealty.com LLC - Bonita Springs, FL
Broker Associate, RSPS, BPOR, HI & PE

Very sound advice Candice. Highlights the difference between a true real estate professional and an agent who needs significant improvement and unduly risks failure.

Jul 26, 2018 10:12 PM #48
Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

I agree with Ron Aguilar ... so much of this pertains to lenders too, Candice A. Donofrio ... and helps us understand our partner agents better.  Always a plus!

My only add ... be accessible and willing to communicate.  That goes for anyone involved in the transaction ... client(s) and professionals alike.  It's beyond frustrating when people go MIA ...


Aug 29, 2018 12:16 PM #50
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

I was fortunate that my first broker taught me these things. Most recently I was approached by a buyer I wasn't comfortable with. Your advice jumped off the page at me: 

If you don't feel right about someone, don't work with them. 

Sep 02, 2018 10:43 AM #51
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

This is a great list!  I was lucky to learn from a seasoned old broker in a small company - boy did he know how to sell!

Jul 16, 2019 06:17 PM #52
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Candice A. Donofrio

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