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Erin,  in Jacksonville, FL

For more experienced agents whats your #1 advice for a newer agent in this market?

Asked by Erin, Jacksonville, FL Sun Jun 10, 2012

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Hi Erin,

Welcome to real estate! Watson is such a great company for newer agents, as they have very thorough training.

My #1 tip is something that I was taught in a training session in the Maitland Watson office when I first joined my husband in real estate.

For the first six months, you really don't know what is going on, and it will take a couple of years before you really have a handle on this business. It's not an overnight thing - learning the practice of real estate on the job is like going to college. Don't be too hard on yourself - just keep learning and working the business and you will learn something from each transaction.

My #2 tip is put out small fires. Go to your broker or mentor immediately when you have a problem that you don't know how to solve. That saves deals, saves law suits, and can save your career!

My #3 tip is something my broker told me when a buyer stood me up after I had exhausted myself the night before preparing for them and missing my son's cub scout meeting. When I finally reached them, they had gone to the same part of town we were going to be looking in that day and bought a house from another agent. He said, "One real estate deal isn't a real estate career, but I have seen one deal ruin a real estate career." Don't let one bad apple derail you from your goals.

Sharon Alters
Coldwell Banker Vanguard
904-673-2308
sharon@teamalters.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 10, 2012
Sharon, It's nice to hear an agent from another company praise the Watson Realty Corp. training!
Flag Sun Jun 10, 2012
Congrats! My advice, learn from others that know this market. Many realtors/brokers simply dropped out since 2008 and are waiting to come back into the market as it 'gets better' That is the worst possible scenario for both! This market is full of opportunity especially for people that are new, because you will only know 'this' market. The current market, the modern and new market that started in 2008 and will remain for the rest of our lives. The perception of real estate has changed and you should consider that with each and every client you meet. Be in-tune with the feelings of clients.
Here is a hint- if your broker or mentor still uses fax machines, charges desk fees, has agents tour open houses and wears a name tag on their pant suit....run!
Buyers and sellers want simplicity and transparency, if you can do that while making it fun- you have got it made! Do not stop educating yourself, evolve, grow and progress. You will be great! Best of luck to you!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 10, 2012
My advice. Make sure your with a non-competing broker who works for you and provides the most up to date technology. Support tools, no desk fees, and a team who supports and grows your business. Coaching and teaching that are on the cutting edge of the Real Estate Market. Meet with more than one company to see if they are really providing you with all you need to grow your business. I hope this helps and if you have any other questions please feel free to contact me directly.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 10, 2012
Focus on on-line marketing as it will reach a larger audience than any other type of marketing you can do--make sure you have a great website that will keep your audience engaged once they find their way to your site. An inexpensive way to start your online marketing is through blogging--remember in the search engines unique content is king and will give you the google juice to move your website to a first place position. Best of luck to you!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 11, 2012
1) Education, Education and more Education due to the constant changes to the housing market.
2) Then Specialize and focus on the buyer's and/or the seller's needs.
3) Create or join a real estate agent team.
4) Understand how to prepare a CMA -comparable market analysis.
5) Give back to the community or get involved.
6) Understand when to qualify your lead.

The above anwsered are not in any particular order.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 11, 2012
1. Find a niche. Don't try to compete with the huge number of "general" or "local" agents in your area - your potential for survival will be extremely limited. Become an expert in some type of property category, not geographical area.
2. Turn down bad clients and bad listings. Develop a sense for clients you can communicate with and who will treat you with respect; don't get into deals with those who will waste your time. Consider whether a potential listing will be a drag on your resources (time, effort, money) without ever becoming a paycheck. In your early years, at least, don't take on "projects" that you can't afford. You need to take on deals that will close in a reasonable period of time so that you can begin to create cashflow and financial reserves for yourself.
3. Realize that every agent in your market is a competitor. Guard your trade secrets accordingly. This also applies to just about every agent in your office. (See Note 1 below)
4. "If you have time to lean, you have time to clean." This is the best business advice I ever received. The summer after high school I worked in a restaurant and the manager was constantly saying this. The restaurant was always clean, busy and profitable. If you find yourself without a specific deal-related task to do during the business day, fill the time with marketing activities. Don't join those I call "real estate derelicts" who sit around the office or coffee shop shooting the breeze. Always have a marketing project you can pick up and make progress with.
5. In all things, be self-reliant. Your office may provide excellent transaction and marketing support, but don't rely on that. Learn those functions so that you'll know when things are going smoothly and when they're not. When they're not, have the knowledge and guts to step in and straighten them out. It's YOUR deal.

Note 1: I started in a big franchise office where an agent was having extreme success with a marketing program she developed. She shared her program at an office sales meeting and soon several of the agents in the office were copying her program as competitors in her target market. Her income went from Trump to Chump.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 11, 2012
If you were opening a sneaker store, doughnut shop or pizza place, what would you need to know?
What about if you were entering a MLM organization or on-line business?

Has even this amount of thought been invested in looking at a real estate career?

If so, you have identified the market and where the customers are located.
You have identified your strengths and weaknesses.
You have zeroed in on the skills you want to perfect first.
You have targeted the prime segment to pursue.

Take the above four items and apply them to the sneaker store or doughnut shop. Do exactly the same with your potential real estate business.

Now, you need to craft the proper message that will resonate with this audience. Then, read slowly the guidance provided by Jeff Metcalf. Then, you do, really, really, really do want to get into a mentorship relationship with a "too busy to bother with you" heavy hitter. (Hint: you learn by dong deals, not warming seats)

The way you being will, in over 95% of newbie cases, reflect how you end. You are already an agent, it's still not to late to map out your business plan. After the ship hits the rocks, it may be too late to map out the course.

It is not rocket science! Success and sustainability does require commitment and planning. Fortunately, there are many, many, many ways to succeed. Unless you buy into the 'accidental real estate' model, you will realize a real business has vision of purpose and destiny. None of them, however, succeed without a real plan.
Best of success to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 11, 2012
1. Don't buy into the "down economy" BS.
2. Find a mentor.
3. Read #1 again. :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 10, 2012
Here's just several items of advice that quickly came to my mind & they are not necessarily in order of importance:

1. Be patient - - it may take some time before your first sale happens!
2. Thoroughly familiarize yourself with our Florida contracts. You want to be uber prepared when someone wants to make an offer.
3. Develop an online presence as others have suggested.
4. Work on your SOI (sphere of influence) list.
5. Know the sales stats for your market. You want to have an answer when someone asks "how's the market."
6. Really like the brokerage you've associated yourself with. Are they cutting edge tech wise? Are they there to assist you with advice when you need it?

Good luck! I hope you'll find that ably and honestly assisting buyers and sellers is as rewarding as I have found.

JOAN LORBERBAUM MOORE
Broker Associate, GRI
Lang Realty
9858 Clint Moore Road
Boca Raton, FL 33496
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 10, 2012
Hi Erin,

Congrats on your career choice! We are in the digital age and online marketing is your key to success. In 2011, over 90% of home buyers started their search online. I recommend registering on every real estate website that is FREE and allows you to create a profile and possibly link your listings right to your profile. Ensure you have a presence on Trulia.com, Zillow.com, Frontdoor.com, Activerain.com and REALTOR.com. 50% of my leads have been coming from these websites. Once you see which one is for you and gives you the most business, then you can subscribe for more leads and use some of your marketing budget to become a full member with more benefits. Give it at least 6 months to see which works for you. I chose Trulia because it's so user-friendly but you will know which is best for you after establishing your presence and interacting with consumers and other agents. Don't underestimate the power of facebook for self-marketing as well. Create a fb biz page asap if you haven't already. You can check mine out for ideas on how to get started if you'd like. You can get their from my Trulia profile page. Good luck and perhaps we'll work on a referral together in the future~

Jeff Metcalf, REALTOR(R)
Watson Realty Corp.
(904)495-0115
http://www.Realty2Reality.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 10, 2012
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