Getting Into Real Estate - Advice For New Agents
Getting into real estate isn't what you see on TV. You're entering into a business that will chew you up and spit you out if you let it but, it's also a business that's extremely rewarding and fulfilling. There's no better feeling than helping someone, especially when it's what is likely one of the largest investments they'll have. Here are a few things I wish someone had told me before I got into the business 10 years ago.
What do I wish I’d known the very first year of getting into the business that cost me lost business and income?
I wish I’d known to interview different brokers. I went with the first brokerage I came across and I wish I’d known to interview different places and ask about mentors and coaching availability. Taking the real estate course and passing the test teaches you very little if anything about how to run a real estate business. The first year was by far my hardest and I felt alone many times. It’s not about commission splits, it’s about finding a brokerage who has a broker or a team that is willing to mentor you and groom you to learn how to run a successful business. Don’t just hang your license with the first broker you come across.
Did I ever question that real estate was the right career choice?
There were multiple times in my first 3 years of real estate that I questioned whether or not I’d made the right choice. I absolutely loved real estate but, the sporadic income when you’re getting established can make it easy to question your choice. I took on some consulting projects to help supplement my income and for lack of a better term bet it all on myself. I didn’t leave an option for a plan B and that was intentional. If you love something and have a passion for it, no matter how hard it is to get established just keep going. If you never give up, work hard, and commit you will be successful.
What 3 things have I learned along the way that positively affected me and helped improve my real estate business?
Be the agent that you’d want representing you – at all times. We all have bad days and it’s easy to interject that into your business. Easy is never the way you want to go when it comes to how you treat your clients. Put the interests of your clients first and truly be their fiduciary. Real estate isn't about sales, it's about relationships. The second you put a price on your integrity is the exact time it’s worth nothing. I learned this from watching my Dad run a successful animal hospital business for over 30 years.
Don’t dwell on the negative - things are going to go wrong, a deal will fall apart, a client will run you into the ground, and you’re going to struggle. Whatever you do, don’t dwell on it. Think outside the box to hold a deal together, fire a client if they’re abusing you, and if you’re struggling have a pity party for a couple hours and then dive back in and focus on the positive. We become what we think. If I’m feeling negative I always go to one of my favorite quotes. When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change ~ Wayne Dyer
You’re running your own business and need to treat it that way at all times. Make goals, know your numbers, and be willing to adjust if needed. Review all of them often, perhaps daily when you’re just getting started. QuickBooks is one of my best friends, I use it daily to track where my business is and identify where change is needed. If you don’t know your goals and numbers you don’t know what direction you’re headed in.
Real estate is an amazing business but, like anything else you get out what you put in. Be willing to work every day and be the hardest working person in the room. Connect with a mentor you trust who can guide you through every aspect of real estate. You’re going to have a lot of questions! Step outside of your comfort zone and most of all ... never give up!