Did you ever get your license? I'm curious what decisions you made and perhaps share what brought you to those decisions.
Many jump into real estate not realizing the difficulty. Sometimes, they realize it's not as hard as they thought.
Thanks so much!
Obviously, you are internet savvy, otherwise you would not be posting your question here. Be sure to find a brokerage who is likwise willing to be on the cutting edge of technology. After all, that is where the vast majority of todays consumers will be found as you build your business.
Find out how they will support you in generating leads, marketing your services, and in servicing the needs of your clients.
Keep in mind that you will have many many opportunities to spend your money before you get your first transaction. Make use of any marketing support you can get from your brokerage, and from low-cost, high impact marketing efforts. Be prepared to be shocked by how much marketing can cost.
As an assistant, you probably are aware of most of the expenses that will be involved. Just remember, that most if not all of that will be coming out of your own pocket, at least untill you have a sustainable flow of business.
Not much to add to Steve's excellent answer. Keep in mind that YOU are interviewing brokers, they are not interviewing you. That's a little different than what is usual in the working world...
As a "newbie" the single most important thing you need is a broker that will provide you with training and mentoring. There are many brokerages out there that provide little of either. Make sure the broker you select is *accessible* and available to answer questions. The relationship you establish up front with your broker is crucial to success in this business.
You can start interviewing any time. It's not like you won't eventually get your license...it's a reasonably easy license to get.
As to favorite companies, I doubt any agent answering will answer anything different than the company they currently work for. What I would suggest you do, is begin thinking about your business plan. What type of person do you envision your client to be? What is your market (area-wise), and does the real estate office in that location, for the company you are considering, a place you will feel comfortable working? How will anyone know that you are in business? How much money do you have to spend on marketing? How long can you survive without a steady stream of clients? Do you want to work in a team? Or do you want to become a celebrity? Do you care about the brand recognition of the company? Do you care about monthly fees/commission splits? Do you need training from your broker?
Answer that kind of stuff first, for yourself, and then look for a company that seems like they are in alignment with your vision and needs.
As to how quickly you will start making money, I think it primarily is a factor of the people you personally know already, and how much they will be willing to work with you right now. If you need to rely on marketing to strangers, it's unusual to get paying deals in under 6 months...and with the market right now, I'd say under 1 year would be a pretty good result.
I have my own office with Realty Executives. Feel free to give me a jingle if you'd like to discuss working for the #1 broker in Phoenix.
Make it a Great Day!!!!
However, like any business you need capital to start and implement your business plan. I would have funds available to implement your busienss plan and provide living income to you for a minimum of 3 months. There is absolutely NO REASON you cannot start generating escrows within your first 30 days of having your license. This can happen through the IMPLEMENTATION and ADHERENCE to your business plan. The company you choose should make this the hallmark of their training!
Many Realtors/Licensees make the mistake of doing this job part time with part time results. If you make a committment to our industry the industry will reward you handsomely. On my reading list I would immediately go out and buy, "The Millionaire Real Estate Agent" by Gary Keller. Gary is the CEO of Keller Williams and the book is read and followed by many, many Realtors who donot belong to Keller Williams (It was on the New York times best seller list!).
Harvard Business School did a study years ago and identified real estate as the quickest way to a 6 figure income. I knew of a RE/MAX agent named Nate Brooks who, before being licensed, had a bound business plan, personal video made, brochures, business cards, stationary and a data base ready to go so when he got his license he immediately went to work. First year he did $150,000. This was back in 1989! Today he'd probably have done $500,000+.
I think you are in the "golden age" of real estate. Never before have such resources been available to the Realtor to realize their financial dreams. Remember, you are a "sales person" and as such need to practice, practice, practice your profession. Integrity and Ethics should be your hallmark. Welcome to the fray!!
I hope everyone here who responded to your question will go add to the above question asking about their first year in business.
Good luck. Take the time to meet all the Realtors in your area this Sunday at the National Open House.
Start interviewing now and learn through the process. You will be presented with lots of statistics on who is top in the area - look closely at those, per agent stats are important as well as what areas are being compared. Ask to talk to other agents in companies that you have narrowed down to. I echo, placing emphasis on training that a Broker will provide and their technology emphaisis.
You have already been given great advice, one thing I would suggest you do is to start working right away on your GRI or other designation of choice as you begin your CEU classes. Contact PAAR at http://www.paar.org to get more information.
In the long run, this is going to be a great time to begin your career because you will have the opportunity to learn how to sell in a tough market and see many creative marketing techniques that you would have missed a couple of years ago. Prescott Valley is a great place to be right now, because the price point is friendly to today's buyers.
In your plan, map out fees and expenses, this will tell you what you need to sell in order to cover costs at each Brokerage - and Yes, Starting out as a buyer's agent is a great idea.
Best of luck to you.
Start your database (I suggest Top Producer). Get everyone you know in there. Second, write a letter to all of those people and apology to them that you have not been keeping in contact with them. Give them a short "Oh, by the way" type sentence that you will be working in Real Estate.
I would suggest to start as a Buyer Specialist for a group or team to get experience. Also, I think that Keller Williams, like some other great companies, have great training! Getting training is key to income.
Making money is made in direct proportion to the constant contacts you keep.