Have You Found Your Real Estate Niche?

By
Real Estate Agent with Realty Executives BRIO

The Market has slowed down.  We are not as busy as we once were.  What are you doing with your extra time?  Hopefully, you are buckling down and starting to organize your systems into a well-oiled machine, so that when the market picks up, you will be roaring to go.  This is also a great time to start thinking about having a niche?

Think about it...Yes, we sell real estate...but are you a Jack-of-all-Trades and a Master-of-None?

 I believe that each of us has something unique to offer to the real estate community.  We have different personalities, specialties, abilities, attitudes, skills, drive, motivations, etc.  We are not all moved by the same things.  Thank goodness!  So what moves you?

 If you are having a hard time finding your real estate niche, I have compiled a list to help you out.    Most often, you will find that the niche you are drawn to is a reflection of a previous passion and can give strong insight into who you are.  Read through the list.  Do any of them resonate within you?

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Niche Markets for Real Estate Agents

Commercial Real Estate-You enjoy selling office buildings, hotels, apartments, retail, hospitality, shopping centers, and industrial properties.  You probably like punching on the calculator to see if the numbers work out.

FSBO's-You target the For Sale by Owners.  You know that 80-90% will give up and turn to a Realtor so you want to be there to prove your skills and the worth of working with an agent.

BPO's -You know that Broker Price Opinions can bring in a good side income in addition to your commissions and you are hoping that a few turn into REO listings.  You don't mind doing paperwork. 

REO's-You don't mind working with banks to help them sell their inventory.  You understand the challenges of getting real estate owned properties ready to market, the upfront costs involved and the hard work that goes into it.

Expired Listings-I have heard these specialists labeled as bottom feeders but why not think of them as agents who like to help.  They can see that the property has not been marketed to its best potential.  They know those photos of the bed are not going to sell the home.  They step in when they see a problem and fix it.

Foreclosures-You keep your investors in the know about homes going to the Trustee Sales, hoping they will come to you in the future when they are ready to sell.  You like finding good deals and helping your clients make money.

Short Sales-You have the skill of working with the banks and getting them to take less than what is owed, the extra shuffling of paperwork and the extra time that goes into these deals.  You don't give up and have tenacity.  You are good at getting things done even when it seems no one else cares. 

Personally Investing in RE-You see value in owning and investing in your own properties. 

Developers/Investors/Flippers-You have your finger on the pulse of what is hot and what is not.  You like helping others and in this case, you like helping them to make money.  You are always on the hunt for that special property$$ or land.

Multi-Family Homes-You love when you can show that the rent role plays out with the investor ahead each month.  You have a knack for selling apartment buildings, duplexes, triplexes and such.  You understand numbers and zoning.

Condo Specialist-You know how to guide the client through the Home Owners Association's By-laws, covenants, and such.  You might know all the new high-rise developments coming to your city before they start building.  You may specialize in Penthouse suites.

Relocation-You love to welcome the newbies by telling them all about your great city, showing them around town and introducing them to like-minded individuals. 

Green Real Estate-You have an interest in living green and like to share it with the world.  You understand our resources are depleting and you encourage and educate others on how to live a more sustainable lifestyle.  (This is my niche in case you hadn't gotten that from my previous posts.  I thought I would state the obvious)

First Time Home Buyers-You are a teacher at heart.  You enjoy taking the lead and showing the way, giving sound advice, and educating your buyer's along the seemingly daunting home-buying process. (This is another niche of mine)

Vacation Home Specialist-You love to find that second home for clients, whether or not it is up in the mountains by a great skiing area, on the golf course, or along the beach. 

Retirement Home Specialist-You understand that we all age and like to help those who are ready to downgrade their current living situation or help them to find a great retirement community.  You are probably a very caring person.

Vacant Land Specialist- You probably have a good understanding of zoning laws, perc tests, boundaries, etc. and work well with developers.

Rural Home Specialist- Wells and septic systems are your forte.  You understand there is more to the process than I turn the water on and water comes out.  I flush and the waste is gone.  Often times, buyers have never lived in a home with these systems and need help understanding them.  May have experience with floodlands.

Luxury Home Specialist-You probably have a refined taste and know how to cater to the wealthy.  You probably have connections and/or know how to connect with the elite.

Vintage Home Specialist-You know and love turn-of-the century homes and know how to glorify their attributes.  You probably feel that each home has a story to tell if only the walls could talk.

Leasing/Property Management-You are good at managing things and know how to interview for the best potential tenants.  You have your finger on the rental market's pulse and have an interest in managing your client's assets (even better if they are your own properties).

Waterfront Properties-You love water and understand beach rights and frontage, wetlands, storm water drainage plans, sewer disposal, and other issues that come up with waterfront property.

Foreign Language/Diversity Specialist-You have the ability to connect with others in a way that I may not.  You may speak Spanish or Korean or maybe you connect with the gay and lesbian community.   Buyers and sellers may be attracted to you because you share a special bond, language, etc.

Single Woman Buyers-There are more and more successful, single woman who want to be homebuyers and those who can appeal to this demographic can really be successful.  These women don't want to have to wait for a husband or partner to come along.  They want to fulfill their dreams of being a homeowner and you want to help them reach this goal.

Neighborhood Schools Specialist-You know the best private and public schools in all of the neighborhoods.  You may even know the teachers and the principals.  You pride yourself on helping families move to a neighborhood with schools that meet their needs.  You may also be a parent yourself and you even might be on your favorite districts school board.

Equestrian Property-You understand that horse lovers need that special property.  You have no problem putting on your boots and getting dirty to find them what they are looking for.  You probably have a horse yourself.

Farmland Specialist-You understand the dynamics of a farm and you help connect farmers with the perfect land to produce their goods. 

Real Estate Divorce Specialist- This is for real, I found this website online and got a kick out of it.  They claim "In over 70% of divorce cases, the couple is either selling a house, or buying one, or BOTH!  Wouldn't you like that business?"  I can see how it would be beneficial to have the extra skill and knowledge of how to work with divorcing couples as this can really be a slippery slope.

Neighborhood Farm Agent-You have chosen a neighborhood that you want to be your Farm area.  You may send out calendars, knock on doors for food drives, throw neighborhood parties, or be on your city's council.  You know the area you want to do business in and you are working it.

Animal Lover Agent-You appeal to other dog lovers (cats, birds, etc) and market yourself this way.  I see it all the time...people love to pose with their animals for their real estate photos...it obviously appeals to the client that shares their passion.  Example: Jim Hubal

 

I know that this list is by no means complete.  Did I leave your niche out?  Leave a comment and tell me about your specialty.  Did I already list it?  Tell me why that niche appealed to you.  Still don't have one and don't like any on this list.  Well, then I suggest you dig in deep and ask yourself what makes you tick.  What drives you?  Then go out and make yourself a niche that relates to those expertise.  Remember we all are unique and each have something to offer.

Your niche can say a lot about you.  What is it saying?

 

                  

Comments (4)

Thomas Tolbert
Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate Legacy - Savannah, GA

My specialty is relocation. It's so rewarding helping buyers relocating to my community!

Nov 14, 2008 09:29 AM
Michael Wayne Jackson
Coldwell Banker - Novato, CA
Broker - Seniors Real Estate Specialist Novato

I would say I fall under the short sale category as my niche.

Nov 14, 2008 09:35 AM
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

Hey, Ashley. You forgot "Music agent." My husband has gotten one Client that provided him with two escrows -- one buying and one selling -- because they saw that he played the piano. The Clients were a pianist and a cellist.

Dec 05, 2008 01:17 PM
Lynn Krogseng
Keller Williams Premier Partners - Vancouver, WA

I like my "Walkable Community" niche.  It's very close to green emphasis, but leans more toward sustainable.  The difficulty is not acting like a golden retriever when I meet another with similar views :D

You really spent some time thinking of all the specialties!  Some interesting sub-specialties I think I qualify for (single women, first time homebuyers, condo specialist).  It makes sense to go with what we are most naturally inclined to.

Dec 15, 2008 12:45 PM