A staggering statistic in the real estate business is that 84% of new agents will be out of the business within 18 months. I have the opportunity to speak with new agents all the time and they all seem to have an unrealistic expectation of what their income level will be in year 1, 2 or 3. This is a career that can provide an agent with a very comfortable living, but like anything else, you will only achieve that level if you are willing to put in the work. So many agents think that once you get your license the money starts rolling in and the truth is that you are lucky to break even in year one. It will take you until your third year to actually make a respectable income. Most people coming from a corporate job where they are accustomed to getting a check every two weeks either don't have enough of a safety net to live on or they panic before that 18 month timeframe and go back to the comfort of a check every two weeks. My advice is to set a realistic expectation when you get in the business and understand that you won't be making a great living until you establish yourself in this business. The truth is that most agents fail because they don't put in the necessary work required to make it in this business. Listings don't just fall in your lap and buyers aren't typically knocking at your door. You have to be out there making it happen because if you aren't, someone else is. Don't be a statistic! Be one of the 16% that make it in this business and enjoy the benefits of a comfortable living. As always your referrals are appreciated!
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If you build the value of your knowledge and services during a sales presentation or listing appointment, you shouldn’t have to worry about ever discounting your rate. If you go into a listing appointment and your best pitch is that you can do it for less than the competition, you automatically discredit your value. Anyone can cut their commission in an attempt to get a listing, but by showing a client why you are worth what you charge, you gain trust and client confidence. There is always an agent out there willing to cut a commission in the hopes of getting business. Set the expectation level of your services in the beginning of the transaction and continue to meet and exceed that level throughout the transaction. This builds your value even more and also demonstrates to the client that you are well worth what you are getting paid. Be professional, promote confidence and build value in the services you will be providing and your clients will see the benefits of using you to represent them in the real estate transaction.
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What does it take to build a successful real estate career?
I would start by saying that it takes a total commitment on your part to make it happen. You have to put in the work to make it in this business. There are a lot of professions where you can just fake it and still collect a check every two weeks, but real estate isn’t one of those. You can get all of the training in the world and sit through all of the most informative seminars you can attend, but until you look at yourself in the mirror and make a commitment to put all that training to work, you will be broke. The majority of the real estate trainers and coaches out there will tell you a lot of the same information and strategies. It is all good information and the programs put in place are proven to be successful, but they still require the effort from you. Getting training is great, but if you don’t follow through with the effort, you will not make it in this business. So many agents have a confused look on their face and wonder why they don’t have any business. The reason is simple! You didn’t do the work! You put in minimal effort and expected maximum results. That’s not how this business works. It took me a little time to figure out that every single email or face to face contact with someone is an opportunity to earn business. You don’t have to be the annoying person walking around passing out cards, but when you do talk to someone, make sure they know what it is you do for a living. Make sure you listen to them instead of just trying to tell as many people as possible that you’re an agent. You can’t be afraid to ask for the business or a referral, but you don’t want to come across like a pushy sales person either. This is a business and you need to treat it like that. You wouldn’t open up a storefront business and then not show up to unlock the doors 3 days a week. Why would you start real estate business and not do any work 3 days a week. My philosophy has always been that if I am not out there actively pursuing business leads, someone else is. If I am not willing to put in the work, someone else is. I take it personal when a potential client chooses another agent to list their home or represent them as a buyer. It doesn’t bother me for very long, but I do remember them and make sure that if it was something specific as to why they didn’t choose me, I never let it happen again. Write a business plan, stick to that business plan and be accountable for your business. If your goal is to be a successful agent, be willing to put in as much effort as they did to get where they are.
Jeremy J. Burns