Congratulations on obtaining your real estate license! This accomplishment marks the beginning of an exciting journey as a real estate agent. However, it’s important to remember that having a license alone does not guarantee a successful career. To lay a solid foundation for your real estate journey, here are the ten crucial steps to take after acquiring your license.
Finding the Right Real Estate Brokerage
Upon completing your pre-licensing education and obtaining your license, the law mandates that you work under a real estate brokerage. The choice of brokerage plays a pivotal role in determining your success as an agent. While it may be tempting to select a brokerage based solely on low fees and commission splits, these factors often come at the expense of crucial support for new agents. Here are some vital aspects to consider when searching for a real estate brokerage:
- Mentorships and coaching programs
- Career training opportunities
- Access to essential resources
Once you’ve found a brokerage that aligns with your needs, the next step is to arrange an interview. Initiating this process is straightforward: get in touch with the brokerage, express your interest, and schedule a meeting.
Sharing the Word with Your Sphere of Influence
In the real estate industry, your sphere of influence (SOI) refers to the network of people you know, ranging from acquaintances to family members. Your SOI can be an invaluable asset, especially at the start of your career, as most of your initial clients are likely to come from this circle. Clients are more inclined to work with an agent they know and trust. Therefore, when you have a sizeable SOI and they are aware of your new realtor status, the likelihood of gaining clients from your network significantly increases.
Joining Real Estate Boards
Real estate boards, such as the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the California Association of Realtors (CAR), consist of members committed to improving business conditions within the real estate industry. Realtors, distinguished from real estate agents, have furthered their credibility by becoming board members. These boards offer various benefits, including a supportive community, networking opportunities, and discounts. To become a board member, you must pass the NAR’s Code of Ethics exam and be affiliated with a broker who holds an Association of Realtors membership.
Accessing the Multiple Listing Service (MLS)
The Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is a private database established by collaborating real estate brokers. It provides comprehensive information about properties available for sale. The MLS acts as a crucial resource for real estate agents, allowing them to search for available properties within a specific area and access detailed breakdowns of each property, including bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, listing price, historical data, and more.
Establishing a Real Estate Website
Websites are powerful tools for real estate agents. They serve multiple functions, including lead generation, establishing expertise, building brand awareness, and providing up-to-date information to the public. Key features to consider for an excellent real estate website include:
- Strong Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Responsive design and user-friendly navigation
- Messaging capabilities
- Incorporation of images, videos, and virtual tours
- Contact information
- Market data and information
You can either outsource the creation of your website to a web developer or handle the process yourself.
Printing Business Cards
Business cards offer a visual identity for real estate agents and contribute to brand awareness and client trust. As tangible items, they leave lasting impressions on potential clients and are easily distributed and displayed in various locations.
Deciding Whether to Join a Real Estate Team
As a real estate agent, you have the option to work independently or join a team. Consider the following pros and cons of joining a team:
- Access to a larger pool of leads
- Learning opportunities in the early stages of your career
- Exposure to a wealth of knowledge
- Ability to leverage the team’s brand name
- Limited autonomy in choosing clients to work with
- Potential personality clashes within the team
- Additional commission splits
- Building the team’s brand instead of your own
To determine if joining a team is the right choice for you, assess the leads available to you at the beginning of your career. If you possess a significant network of potential clients or a strong referral base, joining a team might impede your progress. However, if your network is smaller, joining a team can provide a solid foundation.
Finding a Real Estate Mentor
Having a mentor is invaluable, particularly when entering a new industry. Mentors are experienced individuals who offer guidance and advice to those less experienced. Your real estate brokerage may conduct mentorship programs that pair new agents with seasoned professionals for ongoing professional development. If such a program is unavailable, don’t hesitate to approach a senior colleague and express your desire for mentorship.
Attending Training Classes
Continuing education is vital even after obtaining your real estate license. Seek out training classes that can enhance your skills and elevate your career. Many brokerages offer training seminars to help agents improve negotiation tactics, gain contract knowledge, and establish effective workflows.
Determining Your “Why”
When faced with challenges and adversity, your “why” serves as a guiding force that keeps you motivated and propels you towards success. Take a moment to reflect on why you decided to become a real estate agent and identify your big goal. This introspection will help you persevere and stay focused during difficult times.
Remember, your journey as a real estate agent is just beginning. By following these ten essential steps after obtaining your real estate license, you are setting yourself up for a successful and fulfilling career. Stay motivated, be open to learning, and enjoy the ride!
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