First Year in Real Estate: 6 Golden Tips to Survive

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It is hard to say how much money a real estate agent can make during his/her first year. The overall state of the real estate industry, economic conditions, housing demands, and interest rate are some of the factors that can influence your first-year income as a real estate agent – and unfortunately, you have no control over these variables. You’ll feel worse after knowing that a large percentage of real estate businesses fail within their first year or two after starting. If the situation is that tough, how can some agents make big money very early?

Just because some of your fellow agents couldn’t make it doesn’t essentially mean that you can’t either. It is all up to you. In spite of all the forthcoming challenges, you can get prepared for what’s to come and end up your first year earning a big profit. Here are some tips to survive and thrive during your first year as a real estate agent. 

Golden Tips to Survive Your First Year in Real Estate 

Be Available 

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Forget about keeping banker’s hours! Seriously! To make a name in real estate, you should get prepared to work long hours, even on weekends. To serve your clients efficiently, it is necessary for you to be available even during non-business hours. Most potential buyers can’t visit the listings between 9 am to 5 pm. That’s why you should schedule your appointments or calls when it’s best for your clients. That way, you not only won’t miss a potential opportunity for sale but also build trust and rapport with your clients. 

Have a Multichannel Marketing Plan 

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Does your marketing plan begin and end up with displaying a For Sale sign in the seller’s yard? I’m sorry to say that your efforts are doomed to failure. The value of signs marketing is undeniable. Real estate signs are a time-tested solution for local advertising. But you shouldn’t view them as a one-size-fits-all solution. 

The best marketing plan is the one that tries to reach customers through different channels. While outdoor signage and print ads are perfect to attract local prospects and non-tech-savvy buyers, websites and social media pages and profiles offer a great way to reach the highest number of potential buyers. Making fast sales shouldn’t be the ultimate goal. By developing a multichannel marketing plan, you can expand your sphere of influence as well. 

Write down Your Goals 

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Are abstract goals floating around in your mind? Write them down and never stop pursuing them until they come true. After setting annual financial goals, it’s time to develop a plan to realize them. Set some realistic but challenging goals and oblige yourself to attain them within a certain timeframe. How many prospects do you need to contact? How many appointments do you need to make to get a signed listings agreement? How many deals do you need to close to earn the desired annual net income? Remember that your plan should be detailed enough to tell you what to do to keep progress toward the ultimate goal. 

Build Your Network 

In addition to a support system, you need to build a network of professionals involved in the real estate industry such as inspectors, bankers, mortgage lenders, contractors, and whoever is associated with your business. Building personal relationships with professionals not only helps you serve your clients better during their home buying/selling journey but also allows you to broaden your knowledge and improve your selling and marketing skills. 

Find a Broker to Hang Your License with 

Nurturing personal relationships is one of the most crucial steps to expanding your network. However, in the beginning, few people recognize you as a real estate agent. You can’t stay in your office and wait to see when one of those people you know or meet socially decides to sell their house. Pursuing business for strangers may not work either because, understandably, fewer sellers can trust a newly-licensed, inexperienced agent. That’s why you need to pursue your career with a reputable real estate broker.  

When working under a real estate broker, it is necessary for you to understand your employment status. Which one do you prefer? To affiliate with a broker as an independent contractor or as an employee?  If you choose the former, you will be considered “self-employed” and as a result, you will be paid for each property you sell rather than for the number of hours you work. Also, you have to meet the expenses of office, advertising, licensing and education, and so forth. When setting financial goals, factor those costs in your desired net income to obtain the gross.  

One of the main reasons the majority of novice real estate agents can’t last is that this career is too damn expensive. Make sure that you have enough savings to cover the costs for at least six months. 

Keep Your Skills Sharp

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Real estate is an ever-evolving industry, forcing you to keep up with new trends and deal with new challenges. One perfect way to gain knowledge of the market and improve your selling skills during your first year in real estate is to spend most of your time learning from the people who are more experienced than you in this career. Experienced agents are valuable sources of useful information, advice, and tips. A good mentor is one with a nurturing personality who gives you the support you need to find your path. 

You may have plenty of names in your mind as a mentor right now. How do you know if you pick the right person as your mentor? First of all, you find a mentor you can get along with. A good mentor is one with nurturing personality. Second, before making your decision, have a conversation with the person you choose as the mentor and ask him/her how available s/he will be, how s/he wants you to compensate, and what his/her plan to help you is. 

No one is an expert in any field from day one. Stay positive and go ahead! 

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