This past year I have seen some interesting changes and trends in the real estate industry. One is a rise in what I call pop-up brokerages.
I define these as a real estate brokerage that has decided to open multiple locations in an entirely new market area in a very short period of time. Many of these new companies try to offer a new take or twist on the traditional real estate brokerage. Some are offering turn-key technology solutions in hopes of luring the agent who is overwhelmed and looking for a quick fix to their poor tech skills. Others are trying to lure agents through profit sharing or creative compensation plans. Many of these companies are trying to lure, sell, or entice agents to join their brokerages by dangling a new, bright, shiny carrot in front of them.
Remember that you can't run a brokerage of any kind without the money to cover the costs of the services they are offering, so if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Agents beware! Before you rush out and jump on any new brokerage's bandwagon, you had better cool your jets and do your homework. Without thorough investigation into what is truly being offered you may be getting nothing more than a smooth sales pitch.
A client of mine recently made a move to one of these brokerages because she was offered a one-stop technology solution. They also had an attractive compensation plan. Fast forward three months and she tells me it was one of the worst decisions she has ever made. The technology solution she was offered did not live up to the claims made about it and she was left in a worse position than she was in before.
I am not saying that change can't be a good thing for your business, but I am saying that you need to read between the lines, do your research and ask other agents who have made the move before you. When you decide you need a change you need to STOP before you JUMP. Too many agents allow emotion to guide their decision making and when it comes to changing brokerages you must rely on facts and not just emotion. Don't just speak to the person who is trying to recruit you, of course they are going to put their best foot forward. Gather information from a number of sources.
Real estate is a business where ultimately you are one hundred percent responsible for your success or failure. Anyone who entices you with a promise of a quick fix or instant income when you join their brokerage is not being honest with you. Your business will thrive or die wherever you are. I know agents that are top producers in offices with only one location and very little market share. I also know agents that have switched brokerages four or five times looking for their magic "real estate business building" pill. It's not that easy, this business requires good old-fashioned exceptional client care, the ability to brand yourself and connect with clients and the determination to keep improving your processes and systems.
The next time your phone rings and the person on the other end is flattering you and dangling a shiny carrot in front of you, STOP and assess. Determine whether you really need to make a move to another company or if you need to take action right where you are!
By Denise Lones CSP, M.I.R.M., CDEI - The founding partner of The Lones Group, Denise Lones, brings nearly three decades of experience in the real estate industry. With agent/broker coaching, expertise in branding, lead generation, strategic marketing, business analysis, new home project planning, product development, Denise is nationally recognized as the source for all things real estate. With a passion for improvement, Denise has helped thousands of real estate agents, brokers, and managers build their business to unprecedented levels of success, while helping them maintain balance and quality of life.