Real estate is a great place to be for many right now. With hot markets in regions across the globe, getting in on the ground floor as a real estate agent can be a great way to start a lucrative career. But there are important considerations to take into account first.
Prospective real estate brokers and agents need to know what’s required of them before they explore a real estate license. Then, expanding your potential through mentorship and networking opportunities will help jumpstart your potential.
Explore your opportunities and build a balanced business budget with the understanding you’ll need in a real estate career. Here’s what you should know.
Learn your licensing requirements
Starting a real estate career requires that you first learn what it entails. You’ll need to come prepared with the skills and passion needed for the kind of work you’ll be doing in real estate.
Before you even go about earning a license to sell and market properties, make sure the career appeals to you. Real estate agents earn their commission by photographing, listing, marketing, and coordinating sales of properties. The process can be complex and difficult.
Important skills to focus on are market analysis and communication. You’ll have to be able to understand people and what appeals to them, as well as be capable of gauging a fair listing price per market conditions. Establishing a solid foundation with these skills is a good first step towards licensing.
Obtaining your actual license, however, will require that you meet general as well as location-specific qualifications. General qualifications typically include:
- You must be at least 18 or 19 years old.
- You must be a citizen of the location in which you’ll work.
- You must complete the proper prerequisite training depending on your state or province.
- You must pass a license examination.
Then, you’ll need to determine the specific requisites of your particular area. Becoming a real estate agent in British Columbia, for instance, requires that you pass a real estate licensing course in British Columbia. They’ll be minute variations in eligibility depending on where you are.
Find a mentor
Another one of the most important things to remember about starting a successful career in real estate is that having a mentor can be immensely helpful — especially from early on.
A mentor is an experienced professional in your chosen field that can impart with you a broader understanding of the job. For a real estate agent, a mentor is vital for developing and expanding a broader network within your community.
Having a mentor, especially within your first year, can make all the difference in developing a pattern of success. They’ll be able to pass on their sage advice and show you the ropes when it comes to closing a sale. They’ll even help you avoid making costly mistakes like mispricing a home or skipping the pre-listing inspection.
But undoubtedly one of the most valuable benefits of having a mentor is the access to the professional network that your mentor has already built. Mentors will be able to introduce you to others in the industry and adjacent industries, allowing you to build social capital that can translate into lucrative partnerships with vendors, suppliers, builders, media professionals, and more.
Having a mentor is an excellent step towards a larger network of real estate opportunities, but you can take that network even further.
Expand your network
Anyone interested in a real estate career should be thinking about networking from early on. Strong social networks serve as the foundation of real estate development and help property developers maximize their profits. In turn, these partnerships form the basis of smooth deals and growth opportunities.
You’ll need to expand your circle of influence to as much of the community as you can possibly reach. This means handing out business cards, encouraging referrals, and setting up a strong social media presence.
From here, you can partner with broker sponsors that offer the kind of commission rate split you want. A strong network of colleagues, collaborators, and business associates always means that you have resources to rely on should you need any kind of assistance in the course of the job, so develop yours now.
Then, explore your professional budget and set clear expectations for your financial success.
Balance your finances
Last but not least, you should know what it means to balance your finances if you are to succeed in a new real estate career. This means understanding the overhead costs as well as dispelling myths about the kind of income you can generate from early on.
Like with real estate investment, entering a real estate career requires you to evaluate your prospects, understand your market, and keep your emotions in check. As you plan for the future, it’s important not to get starry-eyed over commission rates you’re unlikely to see starting out.
Instead, balance the overhead costs with a longer-term investment schedule. The average person spends around $2,500 getting licensed as a real estate agent. You’ll want to account for this in a funneled approach to income expectations, based on your area values.
Any passionate person can begin an impactful career as a real estate agent. But before you go diving in, take these considerations into account. You’ll need to understand the work and set clear expectations for yourself if you hope to be successful.
So learn your licensing qualifications and expand your network now. A future of value in real estate awaits you.