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Brian Sparr, Real Estate Pro in Walnut Creek, CA

Are there any real estate brokers that would be ideal for a new, part-time agent to work for in Contra Costa?

Asked by Brian Sparr, Walnut Creek, CA Fri Oct 5, 2007

I just received my license and would like to start learning the ins-and-outs of the industry on a part time basis (ie, evenings and weekends). I've received mixed responses from a limited number of agents, brokers and office managers that I've spoken to. What are your thoughts? Am I wasting my time? Would I be wasting a broker's time? Would I be doing a disservice to my clients?

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I disagree with the others. - As a part -time agent you should not take on full - time duties - I agree with them there. However there are functions that you can fulfill as a part-time licensed assistant to a full time agent.
The full time experienced agent will give you grunt work to do, but that way you learn the business. By the time you are free to devote yourself full time you will have learned much by osmosis, hopefully your employer will be something of a mentor as well. I would advise that you seek compensation on an hourly or per task assignment. Contingency pay is for those licensees that are earning a commission, a contingent fraction of a fraction that is entirely in some one else's hands is a recipe for disappointment. Your mentor should be currently successful enough to offer you straight piece work or hourly compensation.

Today the busiest folks in our business are the REO listing agents. Seek out those people and ask for hourly work, (clerical OK) I expect you'll get a good response and useful on the job training.
4 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Jim Walker, Real Estate Pro in Carmichael, CA
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Brian,
I know of a great manager in Walnut Creek at the Keller Williams office. If you want his name to set up an interview, let me know.
- Mario Pinedo, CCIM
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Mario Pinedo,…, Real Estate Pro in Beverly Hills, CA
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Hi Brian. As much as I would like to find encouraging words for you, I have to second what Michael said below. Real estate cannot be done right on a part-time basis by a rookie (no offense intended). Since you'd only be available evenings and weekends, I am assuming you have a full-time job. Once you have your first transaction, you'll understand better what's involved on a day-to-day basis. Frankly, before I received my license, I never really knew either what it would be like. Clients do not want to wait until the evening or weekend to get a response from you. They are making a big investment and have a right to expect that they get your attention when it's needed, not when it's convenient for you. I hope I don't sound too harsh. I am just calling it the way I see it. What many people do not understand is that real estate agents are in the lead generating business. Transactions don't just fall in our laps. At least 30% of our day is spent on trying to generate new business and the rest is spent on taking care of existing business. When you do real estate only part-time, you don't spend the necessary time on lead generating and lead follow up. I don't mean burst your bubble, but since you asked, I felt I should give you with an honest answer. Good luck to you.
Web Reference: http://www.go2kw.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
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I've done part time and I've done full time, and believe me, this is a full time job.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 7, 2007
I agree withthe answers that recommend you function as a part time assistant. Most Realtors cannot afford a full time assitant, but many would welcome the idea of a part time assistant. It creates a win-win situation. Do expect to honor the confidentiality of the Realtors files, particularly customer lists. The biggest apprehension any may find is entrusting prospect and customer lists to your access.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
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Hi Brian-

First off, congrats on getting your license.

IMO, both of the previous answers are pretty much dead on with their advice. I think finding a job as a licensed assistant for a top producer would be a better fit than working as a part time agent while still learning the ropes.

Good luck!
Web Reference: http://myeastbayagent.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Yes, all of the above! It is a "standard of care issue". As a broker you do not want a part timer trying to advise clients as to the market when they have no idea of what's really going on, what are the latest issues regarding financing, contract law,etc. Also, what usually happens is the part timer finally get a friend to buy from them and they turn the whole office upside down trying to get help with their offer; writing, presenting, financing, escrow/title and closing. All the time asking someone to baby sit them through the entire closing process, inspections, negotiating contingency removals, doing their agent inspection plus the myriad duties of a FULL TIME REALTOR! I don't think we should even issue licenses to agents until they committed to go full-time. But then again, I know many full-time/part time Realtor/Agents who don't have a clue!! In other words--don't come in and dumb down our industry any further. We are now clearing away the wreckage of all the other folks who got licensed, decided to work for nothing and are now abandoning their clients enmasse. That all being said, if you DO decide to come into the busienss FULL TIME, the associate with a company which will provide you great training and support. Then email me and I'll be glad to give you any support I can!! The Harvard Business School gave real estate the nod years ago stating it was the quickest way to a six figure income in the nation. This is still true! Read the Millionaire Real Estate Agent by Gary Keller and see if you've got the right stuff. Make the leap--it could change your life!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
You should post an update on this since the question was in 2007. Did you decide to go into the industry full time? I can see by your picture you're an agent. I wish you all the best!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 9, 2010
Hi Brian - I live in Walnut Creek and work out of the Keller Williams office in Danville. Our team is looking for a couple of motivated agents to exploit two niche markets we want to move into. If you'd be interested in discussing it over a cup at Peet's give me a call 895-2694 - John Harper

BTW - we have all the systems in place to support this effort.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 17, 2008
Real Estate is really a full time job. Those that have been in it for years and have a good system in place can usually attempt part time with success. The key to remember is your availibilty to your clients. I am not saying you cannot do it part time but I believe it will hamper your success rate greatly.
Most clients are looking for someone solid, doing it full time.
Web Reference: http://www.TerryOsburn.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2007
Keller Williams offers a lot of free training, has its own university and has an amazing culture. I work in a win-win office where most agents are supportive and helpful to all agents. It is a team atmosphere. Some agents have other jobs. Many are full time. We welcome agents to our trainings even if they are not Keller Williams agents. Good training moves everyone ahead.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 7, 2007
At Keller Williams the major emphasis is on education. The training is awesome and free. There is also a way to "earn and learn" as you go. The KW business model is based upon other agents sponsoring new agents into KW. This gives a new agent someone with a vested interest in the new agent's success. All new agents go through a mentoring program.

You are not wasting your time.

Any broker that thinks you are wasting their time is more concerned about them than you. Why would you want to land there?

You would be doing your client's a service. Your very questioning reveals your character and integrity - what client's want most.

Feel free to call, email or IM me - John - TheHarperTeam.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 6, 2007
Hi Brian. I feel its necessary to correct Ed's statement about KW taking part-time agents and putting them on a team. I am a KW agent and I can assure you that nothing is farther from the truth and the team leader, who is equivalent to the sales manager, does not use part-time agents to do grunt work for him/her.
KW is interested in full-time agents who want to have careers worth having. Teams are created by top producers and the team leader does not dictate who is part of a team and who is not. A team leader will decide if an agent is a good fit for KW. At KW we have two types of teams. The whole group of agents in a market center is referred to as the "team as we like to help each other as opposed to compete with each other in an unhealthy way. We are all part of the same team, not just part of the office. The other type of team is created by individual agents. For instance, I could start a team consisting of a buyer's agent, an assistant, transaction coordinator and marketing expert. I'd be the one who decides who works on my team and who doesn't. My team leader can't put anybody on my team. The team leader does not have part-time agents doing grunt work for him/her. We either have associates who are selling real estate or staff that works in salaried positions. If you want to know what the KW business model is, I would recommend you read the Millionaire Real Estate Agent by Gary Keller. I would recommend the book to all agents, no matter what company they work for. It's a proven business model that does not just work for real estate agents but anybody who is in the lead generation business. Good luck to you. I truly hope you'll be able to find a broker who is willing to take you under his/her wings and help you get into the business on a part-time basis.
Web Reference: http://www.go2kw.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 6, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
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Hey Ed, it's a sun visor and it's not backwards. You have to give credit where credit is due :-)
Web Reference: http://www.go2kw.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 6, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
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By the way... Brian... if you want to do this business... lose the ball cap.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Mario has it pegged.

Keller Williams will take new, part time agents and put them on a "team."

You probably will not make any money to speak of but you will learn the basics because you will be doing the grunt work for a team leader. It is their business model.

You asked a lot of questions but you did not ask if you could make any money working part time.

The answer to that question is going to be no.

If you want to learn the real estate business and you don't care if you are compensated for your efforts or not, the answer is yes. You'll get first hand knowledge... you just will not make any money.

You started by saying you wanted to learn the ins & outs. This you can accomplish.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Brian....sounds as if you have received some really good advice. The best advice would be to apprentice under another Realtor as their licensed assistant. This will learn you the ins and the outs.
Web Reference: http://pamwinterbauer.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
Pam Winterba…, Real Estate Pro in San Ramon, CA
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Hi Brian,
Any reputable broker will tell you what my fellow Realtors have already said; this is not a part-time job.
However, you would be ideal as an assistant, and the position would be ideal for you, as well. You could learn so much! And, when you have the time to devote to real estate as a full time career, you will be at a huge advantage! As a matter of fact, if a part-time assistant position interests you, give me a call. We may need your services, and I work with 75 other Realtors in my office who may also be interested in hiring you. Best wishes!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 5, 2007
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