Everyone Makes Mistakes.
Real estate is a difficult business to get into, and a more complicated business than most understand- it’s not uncommon for new real estate agents (and even seasoned ones) to feel overwhelmed or a bit confused from time to time. Here are a few common mistakes we see both new and experienced real estate professionals make for you to avoid:
Life costs money, and being a real estate agent is no different. It takes funding to build a business. Whether that means taking out a business loan, or asking friends/family for help in the beginning- it typically takes a minimum of three months or more of reserve savings before becoming a full time real estate agent is truly viable.
2. Lack of a Business Plan
There are a lot of parallels between becoming a real estate agent and starting your own business- both require a plan. Having clear goals helps you set a timeline, and having a timeline in mind helps one decide how they plan to accomplish them. Without a business plan, spending money inefficiently becomes an all-to-common mistake, and one that you usually can’t spot until it’s too late.
3. Choosing the Wrong Brokerage
There are a number of things every agent should consider before picking their broker- how competitive their split percentage is, whether or not they have a good reputation, how many clients they currently have… the list goes on. What’s important for every real estate professional is whether or not they’re taking the right reasons into consideration. Regardless of how close to your house your potential new broker’s office is, the purpose of a new broker is to help you build a decent foundation for your new career- if a broker doesn’t meet this qualification, then they’re the wrong broker for you.
4. Expecting Success Too Quickly
Patience is a virtue. Most new real estate agents start off with a vision of conquering the world, only to take a step back after a month or two when they realize that it truly does take time to build their reputation. Statistically speaking, most real estate agents don’t make their first sale until 2-3 months after entering the business, and it takes anywhere between 2-3 years before being able to make a living as a full-time agent.
5. Spending Money in the Wrong Places
New real estate agents often spend too much money in the wrong places. Advertising with signs, newspapers, or magazines may seem like the most visible and logical way to get your name out there, but in today’s market, advertising this way offers a low return on investment. Promotion on Facebook and LinkedIn have proven to be far more effective than most people would imagine today- a good referral network should be your prime goal early on.
6. You’re Never Done Learning
It’s important for new real estate professionals to take advantage of every opportunity they get to learn more about the industry- whether its by taking free or paid seminars/courses, online classes, or reading the latest real estate blogs. Technology in the real estate world has been evolving faster than ever, and new agents need to keep up by educating themselves in every way they can.
Jonathan Montgomery Founder and President of the The Real Estate Appraisal Group. He has been a real estate professional since 1998. He’s been a broker, and investor, and now serves as an appraiser. He currently works as an appraiser, doing real estate appraisals in Washington D.C., Southern Maryland, and Northern Virginia.