Is Real Estate a Good Career Choice?
With the real estate market as hot as it is, many are considering becoming a real estate agent, either as a career change or side hustle. Becoming a real estate agent has plenty of advantages and can be accomplished relatively easily, but it does come with challenges as well. Before taking the leap into becoming a real estate agent, there are several things to consider.
Advantages of Becoming a Real Estate Agent
There are many benefits to becoming a real estate agent which make it a very attractive career option. You can get started fairly quickly, you have the potential to make a great income, you will have a flexible schedule, and you will be your own boss. In addition, you will get to work directly with people, assisting them through some of their largest transactions, which can be immensely satisfying.
Challenges of Becoming a Real Estate Agent
Being in charge of your own success may be a perk, but it requires a lot of work, organization, and self-motivation on your part. You will need to drum up business, promote yourself, find and develop leads, be available to your clients when they need you, handle complex paperwork, and more. Real estate agents often give up their evenings and weekends to accommodate clients, and you may find yourself having to cancel plans when your clients need you. In addition, you will likely be on a commission-only basis, so you may be doing a lot of this work without a paycheck. If you don’t close a sale, you don’t earn anything, and even when you do close a sale, you will likely only take home approximately 30% of the total commission (not sale) after splitting it with the other agent and your broker. Real estate is a competitive industry and you will be challenged to build a reputation and make yourself stand out from the competition.
What You’ll Do as a Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent has many duties and will often have plenty of variety each day. You will have a fair share of administrative work, and all legal documents will require complete accuracy. You’ll have a complicated calendar to manage with deadlines for documents and appointments with clients and colleagues. The ability to juggle multiple tasks on a deadline and strong organizational skills are key to managing your days. Some daily activities of a real estate agent include:
- Responding to texts, emails, and phone calls.
- Generating new leads.
- Updating websites and social media profiles.
- Preparing and developing marketing plans for active and upcoming listings (including coordinating photographing, staging, and working with sellers.)
- Building and maintaining client databases.
- Creating monthly, quarterly, and yearly budgets.
- Filing real estate documents.
- Finding listings for your buyers.
- Organizing appointments, showings, and open houses.
- Creating and distributing promotional materials.
- Researching active, pending, and sold listings.
- Drafting competitive market analysis (CMA) reports.
Steps to Becoming a Real Estate Agent
You can become a real estate agent in as little as a few months. Every state has different requirements, but in general, you will take a course, pass a licensing exam, activate your license, and join a real estate brokerage. Real estate agents always work under a licensed real estate broker. The cost of becoming a real estate agent is a few thousand dollars, which will cover the course, exam, license, and startup expenses (such as business cards, signs, and websites). To use the term “Realtor”, you will need to join the National Association of Realtors, pay a membership fee, and subscribe to the NAR’s Code of Ethics.
Becoming a real estate agent is a great move for the right person. If you have the right dedication, personality, and motivation, becoming a real estate agent can be an excellent career move and lead you down the path to success. Becoming a successful real estate agent may not be as easy as anticipated, but it can be a very fulfilling career for many people. If you’re interested in becoming a real estate agent and want to learn more, contact Amberwood Real Estate today.