Today I put in my notice at my 9-5 J O B and im going to start selling real estate full time in February. This was a very tough decision for me to make, leaving the comfort and stability of my daily job to start in the unpredictable world of real estate. I've been unhappy at my j o b for 4 years now and im excited for the new journey. Im new to real estate and it makes me very nervous to make this leap but I feel this is the right direction for me to go in.
Does anyone have a similar experience or advice to share with me and the community?
Congrats on your decision! I started a side business a few months ago and hope to eventually be able to pull the trigger and go full-time. Best of luck to you in your new journey!
I admire your decision. I have been miserable in my job for just about 6 years now. I continually come up with excuses as to why I cannot pull the trigger - mortgage, single, live in WV, too many bills, and age 50+, etc. I believe the bottom line is that I am just too scared don't have enough confidence in my ability to take the leap and still support myself. During the last 6 years I have allowed my employers to zap my self confidence. I know I have to do something soon because I hate the 50 mile commute each way that will increase in February and the fact that my current employer is not flexible when it comes to working from home.
All that said, I cheer you on for the decision you've made!!!!
Thank you Karen! This has been a transition I've wanted to make for four years now and believe me I had a million excuses. But lately going into work everyday and being surrounded by negativity has really taken its toll on me and my wife because I constantly would come home in a bad mood. Its funny, I would always be listening to inspiring people like Dan Miller and Zig Ziglar and then I would go to work and all that motivation was out the door because I just did not want to be there. I knew that I had to go in a new direction. So I got my real estate license in November and the original plan was to continue working the j o b and do real estate on the side. I realized about a month into it that real estate was what I wanted to succeed at and I wasnt going to succeed doing it part time. It was a very hard thing when I went into my bosses office and gave him my notice especially when they offered me more money to stay but at this point its not about the money. That would make me happy for about a month and then I would be right back where I started.
I know the next few month will be very hard but I truely believe that if youre doing something you love and work hard, the success will come from it.
Good Luck Karen!!
Congratulations on making a move to do something different. Very exciting and nerve racking all at the same time. I'm a real estate agent too and thought that I might be able to offer some advice. I hope it's helpful.
1) Develop a farm. Real estate is all about getting in front of people and building relationships. Developing your farm will create Top of Mind Awareness (TOMA) so that when someone is ready to either buy or sell you can be there "guy."
2) Do what other people are not doing. Many real estate agents send out mailings or put flyers on people's porches. But what can you do that's different? Is there an event you can host or sponsor? It could be as simple as offering to provide pizza at a local church for an event and asking if it would be okay for you to put your business cards on the table with the pizzas while you serve others.
3) The real estate motto is, "You list, you last." When you first start out it's easy to become focused on only working with buyers. Buyers eat up a ton of time and your resources. Try to get some listings. You can be much more successful if your working both sides.
4) Real estate agents typically don't make it their first year. If you do the right things (like farming) you have a better chance. Find a couple of things that might be able to bring in some income as you build your real estate business. I had one friend start a house power washing business when the market tanked and it was the contacts that he made through the power washing that brought him success again as a real estate agent. He made ends-meet through the little money that power washing brought him. He was able to wait out the bad market and not go broke until his next paycheck from real estate came in. Remember, it can take a really long time until a closing actually happens.
If there is anything else I can help, please let me know. I love real estate and hope you find a new home there too!
Gary, thank you for the advice!
I have have started to figure out my farming strategy but ive run into a few mental roadblocks. What would you say is the best way to choose an area to farm? I live near alot of apartments and also lots of established residential neighborhoods. Im thinking of doing a big push in the apartment communities. I am getting ready to work for a big name real estate company and they offer alot of training for new agents and mentors so Im very excited about that.
Thanks Again, Matt Smith
Training is so important! Remember, that working as a real estate agent is much different than a "traditional" job. Almost all brokers offer agents no salary so you are really interviewing them and not them interviewing you as in a traditional job. While it's always important to be professional, remember that they are going to offer you the job no matter what because you will be making them money and not costing them anything other than some overhead costs for desk space. I would advise the following since you are new to the game when you look to sign with a broker:
1) The training program needs to be recurring and in writing so you can see that they are actually offering the training that they say they are
2) You want to try to find a brokerage with a manager who is on payroll. If he/she is not, then he or she has to focus on buying and selling to make a living in addition to managing the office. It's okay to be managed by someone who gets a part of the commission split you pay to be a part of that company, but if the manager has to sell real estate in order to survive he/she will not be focused on helping those he/she manages and it creates an environment of stiff competition rather than cooperation.
3) I would advise you not to sign with a brokerage that charges desk fees. You're going to be broke going into this and to pay more money at first may be what breaks you before you make a sale. Remember, you've already shelled money for classes and your license but you still will have to pay somewhere in the area of $2000 this year in order to join your local real estate board, get access to the mls, pay for error and omissions insurance, pay the National Association of Realtor fees, and your state Association of Realtor fees. You'll also need to get business cards and marketing materials too. Your first sale really just covers the cost of being a real estate agent for a year.
4) A good split at a reputable company for a new agent is 65% for you 35% for your 1st million in sales and then get bumped (maybe to 75%) after you hit a million and have increases on the way up. Make sure to read the fine print and see if your company will reset you to a base split each year that you have to work up. Some companies will start you over each year so although you may have had a killer year selling 5 million in property and now get a 95% share split the may bump you back to 65% at the beginning of the year and you will have to climb every year. That will cost you a lot of money!
5) You need to farm where you think your ideal clients are. How do you know that? You need to really think about who your ideal clients are. If you're looking for people who have a growing family and are wanting to sell a house in order to buy a bigger one, you won't want to farm an apartment complex. But, if you want to work with first time buyers as your ideal client than you might want to farm an apartment complex. Remember, you'll never get a seller from an apartment complex but if you farm a condo complex, townhouse complex, or stand alone neighborhood you could pick up a buyer, seller, or both. *** You can't do any transactions as an agent until you are under a broker. So don't spin your wheels trying to get clients that you can't do anything with. Your first step is to pick a brokerage to work with.
Okay Matt, I hope that helps. Keep me posted.
I think that's great you are making this bold move, and wish you the very best. I was laid off after the dot com bubble burst, and decided to go in to real estate (mainly commercial) in my wife's home town. It was a relatively small area, and I didn't know many people, but was counting on my wife's contacts and friends to give me a boost. I found it to be very exciting at first, and actually am still doing this work today, but you have to make sure you are a) hard worker, b) it helps if you are from that area or somehow have your own friends, c) realize that every day is a new chance to earn money and to help someone. I think if I had it to do over again, I would have stayed in Dallas where I was and tried it, instead of moving to an area where it was a smaller community and where I didn't know very many people. In a smaller town, you may be liked and people may be greeted well, but they probably know people they grew up with, went to school with, etc., that do the same thing. Just my 2 cents.
Best to you!
Jumping to into real estate is something I've been pondering. I got to hangout at a local brokers office for a few day this week I seen something that I liked somethings a I didn't I talked to a agent not associated with that company who informed me to stay away from real estate in my area due to low volume. Needless to say I was saddened by this however I have not given up. I wish you the best of luck. Keep us posted as to your progress. If you ever need an independent opinion feel free to contact me.
If real estate is a passion, I would suggest reconsidering you're decision based on what that agent told you. There are a ton of people who have real estate licenses that just don't put the work into the job that they need to in order to be successful. The estimate in my area is that 1 out of 4 people have a real estate license. I live in Southern California which was hit pretty hard when the bubble burst. I can tell you that I work very hard and that just this weekend I submitted two offers for two different clients. It's not a matter of how many real estate agents there are or how much of an inventory there is. Really what it comes down to is how hard of a worker are you? I work as a real estate agent, a career/life coach, and a speaker. I work very hard at all three and believe it or not they actually feed into each other. If it's a passion of your's then do it! If not, you might want to do something else because it is hard work. Best of luck!
I do not have similar experience....yet...but I just wanted to wish you all the best. You know what they say, "The harder I work, the luckier I get!" You can do this Matt. You will look back on this one day and think, "BEST move I ever made!"
By the way, nice website.
I am not a realtor, nor have I ever been. But if I were to go into real estate Dean Jackson would be the guy I would turn to for all my marketing advice. I follow a lot of his advice and spin it for my own industry. Here are some notes from one of his classes. http://www.deanjackson.com/classnotes/ I don't know how useful that will be. He used to have a podcast on iTunes but I can't find it anymore. Here is a site for one of his products. http://www.gettinglistings.com/ Not really suggesting you buy it, just trying to give you some useful information. Dig around on Google and see if you can find some free info from him.
My wife are already saying this! Even though I havent officially left the j o b yet, I have a few weeks left, I feel energized and ready to pursue this new career. Its funny how much harder you work at something when its something you love!