Real estate agents: the things you need to know before you commit

Real estate agents: the things you need to know before you commitBecoming a real estate agent is a career move that thousands of people make every year. The ability to set your own hours, the freedom of working out-of-office and the fact that the job can be quite lucrative are all big draws – but like any big decision, you should do your research first. If you’re planning on becoming a real estate agent, there are a few things you should know before taking the leap.

It’s all about the sale
At its core, real estate is a sales job: each agent’s pay is determined by what they have sold, not by how many hours they worked. However, the more hours an agent does put in, the more likely they are to sell a property and get their commission. It’s also important to remember that some months are slower than others on the property market, with summer often referred to as peak season.

Establishing yourself may take time
Working in a commission-based role can be financially rewarding, as the only cap on a real estate agent’s salary is how many properties they can sell. However, it takes time to generate leads and start selling properties, so don’t be disheartened if you’re not instantly surrounded by potential clients. Adept salespeople should soon build up a solid network of contacts, but it’s a good idea to have some savings to fall back on while you’re establishing your reputation in the local market.  

People are the priority
Relationship building skills are essential for anyone who wants to go far as a real estate agent. The job is not just about property; it’s about people. Lead generation is the key to making money in a real estate role, as having a constant stream of clients looking to buy or sell will ensure a constant stream of commission for the agent.

Weigh up incomings and outgoings
There are a number of costs associated with becoming a real estate agent, from the day to day running of a car and mobile phone to in some cases training courses, conferences and advertising. Each real estate agent is responsible for their own business, and it’s important to have a solid understanding of finance to ensure that your money is spent wisely.

Real estate is a career, not a hobby
Although real estate agents have a lot more freedom of movement than people in traditional office roles, it’s important to remember that it’s still a full time job. The more time and effort an agent puts into building leads, responding to enquiries and promoting their property, the more money they will earn. Spending an hour on it here and there won’t be enough of a commitment to guarantee success.  

If you understand what it takes to start a career in real estate and you believe you have the essential skills to do it, Engel & Völkers would love to hear from you. With over 500 shops in 38 countries, we’re always on the search for talented individuals to join our team. Visit our careers page to find out if we have any vacancies near you, and you could soon be on the way to a rewarding career in property.

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