First of all, it is important for you to understand that the first six to nine months are typically very difficult for new real estate agents. T
Successful, established Realtors will be busily putting transactions together, collecting their commission checks, and making it all look easy.
You, as the newcomer, wistfully observes this and can begin to feel inadequate to make the transition from "newcomer" to "successful" Realtor.
The answer is to recognize it as a common problem with a simple cure. You need to develop a personal set of work habits and persevere.
Here are some thought-starters:
- Know Who You Are
I once knew a waiter in a restaurant. He said he wanted to go into real estate and thought he would be good at it because, "I'm not just an order taker." That sums up very well your challenge as a real estate professional. On rare occasion a prospect may simply ask you to list a home or to make an offer on a home, but basically you will have to go out and generate business. And no matter how supportive and helpful your broker might be, in essence you are a one person business.
- Get Training
"What you learned in your real estate license prep course gave you a good background, but the actual job of listing and selling real estate requires additional skills and knowledge," says an experienced Realtor. If your company has a training program, participate wholeheartedly. If there is no formal program, structure one of your own. If you are going to make it in real estate you have to be a self starter and self motivator.
There is plenty of material available in the form of books, magazines, courses, and seminars. One of the real benefits of your membership in your local Realtor Association is that they offer a series of very useful professional development courses. GRI (Graduate, Realtor Institute) is the one you should consider after you've been in the business a few months.
- Find and Follow A "Role Model"
Some real estate firms have "big brother/sister" programs in which experienced Realtors take a new Realtor under their wings for the first few months. First, you may want to make sure a firm you are considering joining has such a mentoring program. If no firm has such a program, you can create your own mentoring program. Find a very successful Realtor and ask if you can "follow him (or her) around". If the Realtor you ask says, "no," you have not found the best Realtor. Good Realtors are happy to help train younger Realtors in the right way to conduct business.
I did that. Whe I first began my real estate career, I asked around until I found the person many considered the most successful Realtor in our area. Then I approached him and he agreed to let me follow him around for 3 weeks, "Shadowing" the most successful Realtor in our area, I learned a lot just by carefully observing his actions and the processes he used, and asking him questions.
Finally, if you find Realtors in your office with bad attitudes, avoid them like the plague. You can get a sense of who the best and the worst are by a simple test. Do they spend a lot of time in the office. There are no customers in the office, they are out there where you should be "finding them."
- Learn to Manage Your Time
It will be tempting to spend your time on enjoyable, but nonproductive tasks. The owners of a popular Website Promotion service firm advises, "Be clear on how you get paid in the real
estate business. You will only get a paycheck when a listing of yours sells, or you sell someone else a home."
When you plan each day, it is critical to your early survival that you concentrate your efforts on the "payoff" activities of listing and selling. For newcomers and old timers as well, that means a lot of prospecting.
"Spend only as much time 'in the office' as required to complete your required administrative chores. You need to be out meeting people and looking at property. Set aside a sizable chunk of each day
to be driving around neighborhoods you hope to focus on, getting to know it and the people who live there and the price points of homes there," advises Judie Berger, a top Sarasota Realtor.
- Use Technology to Your Advantage
To be successful you will absolutely have to become conversant with all the latest technological tools, and stay up-to-date. Your Local Realtor Association
most likely runs seminars on technology tools. Go to every one of them. According to Dick Plumb, a Bradenton Florida realtor, "if you pick up one good idea at each such seminar, it will have been worth the time invested."
Many of the latest technology packages include "farming" support. Your "farm" is the area you concentrate on to get listings. The package you choose should be one that makes it easy for you to create postcards and other materials that you can readily send out on a regular basis to residents in your "farm."
I found that my monthly postcards generated more leads for me than anything else other than my website. And, both are required. Local "farming" will get you local business. Your website will generate leads from out-of-towners considering moving to your area.
- Get Out There- Really "Out" There
When you're out in the community, keep in mind the same rule that applies to the office. Andree Huffine, a well-known Sarasota luxury real estate agent says "You will not find prospects "in the office." You also will not find prospects 'sitting in your car.' Get out, introduce yourself, and give everyone you meet your business card."
Real estate is a people business. If you don't like dealing with people, get out of the real estate business. The best advice one can work with is this, "treat others as you would like to be treated."
Remember to stay in touch with every past client - they are your best source of referrals of new clients. This requires that you keep a file on every past customer, their birthdays or anniversaries, if you can get that info, when they bought their last home from you,,etc. Is the wife pregnant now sod perhaps they may be considering a bigger home.... You get the idea - stay in touch.
If you're doing things right, it won't be long until the majority of your business will come from past, satisfied clients.