Six Steps To Getting Your Real Estate Career Off The Ground
Real estate is not an ordinary 9-5 job. A real estate agent acts as a guide for people who are often dealing with the largest purchase that they will make in their lives. It’s a high stake game and if you are up to it, you will enjoy it because it is equally rewarding.
If you are planning to launch your real estate career, it’s more important to have a business plan and a positive mindset than to possess the talent of a salesperson to become successful. There is no denying the fact that it can be extremely challenging for a newcomer to make his or her mark. Since a huge amount of money is involved in a property transaction, people like to work with an experienced salesperson, not a newbie.
While odds may be stacked against you, it is possible to overcome these challenges and build a successful career in this industry.
Here is the step-by-step process to getting your real estate career off the ground.
Step#1: Set your goals
First of all, you need to know what your expectations are from this career. As a real estate agent, you can be your own boss and decide your income. It can be a side gig, while it is a full time job for many others.
On a piece of paper, write down answers to the following questions:
Why are you choosing this career?
Do you currently have a full time job and want to make money on the side?
What are your income goals and expectations?
Will you be able to work on the weekends and during holidays (a lot of people like to do house hunting on weekends)
Keep in mind as you progress in your career, your plan of action may change. Even if you want to work part-time for now, you may start making enough to quit your current job and become a full time realtor.
Step#2: Getting licensed
You need to register with the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO) as a licensed salesperson to represent buyers and sellers in property transactions. In order to get licensed, you need to complete real estate courses provided by the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA).
There are minimum age, education and other eligibility criteria that you need to fulfill in order to sign up for these courses. The great news is that you can complete these courses online or through correspondence. Once you are licensed, you are ready to launch your career in the real estate industry!
Step#3: Choose a brokerage
As a realtor, you will be required to work with a brokerage. Only brokerages that are registered with RECO are authorized to represent property buyers and sellers in real estate transactions. Agents and brokers are employed by the brokerages. A brokerage needs to have a broker of record under whose supervision property transactions are performed.
You should choose a brokerage very carefully. Apply to multiple brokerages and find out the following things before joining one:
Types of training and mentoring for new salespeople
Number of salespeople who are trained by the brokerage each year
Types of services offered or any specialization (listing or selling)
Number of property transactions performed by the brokerage on average
Expenses that the brokerage will pay
Any hidden fees (printing, desk etc.)
Social media support
IT support (building a website, having an App)
Working with a brokerage will give you enough experience to build your own brand.
Step#4: Tap into your sphere of influence
The first step towards building your own brand begins with your sphere of influence. Make a list of all the people who are in your sphere of influence. These could be your family members, friends, friends of friends, teachers from your high school, your lawn mower or anyone that you know fairly well. Send them an email or a letter telling them you’re in the business.
Even if they are not planning to buy or sell properties, they can refer your services to others in their own sphere of influence. Always remember nothing works better than referrals in this industry.
Step#5: Client satisfaction
Go the extra mile to ensure that your clients are satisfied with your services. The feedback and testimonials you will receive from your first few clients will go a long way in helping you establish yourself.
Be prepared to answer phone calls and emails from clients at odd hours. Be responsive and patiently answer whatever questions that your clients may have (even if they sound silly to you). Win their trust and try to build long-term relationships.
Hold as many open houses as possible. It will help you network with prospective buyers.
Step#6: Build your own brand
Even when you are working with a brokerage, you should build your own brand. Try to establish yourself as an expert in your area. Set up a professional website. You can use free website building programs such as WordPress to create the website. A website can be a great tool to generate real estate leads online.
If IT is not your cup of tea, you can hire IT professionals who can build your online presence for a few hundred dollars.
You can use this website to interact with your prospects. Try to find out what challenges property buyers and sellers are facing in your area. You can provide solutions to these problems through blogging on your site. You can provide e-books to educate your prospects on property transaction process. You can also set up lead capture pages to collect emails in exchange of free books or other offers and launch a drip email campaign.
Update your website with fresh content on a regular basis. It will help your site rank higher in search engine results.
You should hang out with journalists and editors of your area’s newspapers, news channels and magazines. Always have an opinion on any important development in the real estate industry. Ask your journalist friends to quote you in their stories.
If you are already a real estate salesperson in Toronto, you can also become a broker by completing the Broker Registration Education Program provided by OREA, and then applying to RECO for registration.
Becoming a real estate agent is not different from starting any other business. You need to be disciplined and should always try to provide great quality service to your clients. Even though you'll work within a brokerage of established realtors, you should aim for building your own brand and a client base. If you want to learn more about our agent plans and how to get your real estate career off the ground register below to learn more.