Real estate agents: how to manage time better and avoid pitfalls

As a real estate agent it can sometimes feel like you have to have three pairs of hands and be an expert juggler. Being self-employed can mean you’re preparing marketing pieces, meeting lenders, showing properties or hosting open houses, reviewing contracts and catching up on emails, while trying to forge new connections and write timely web or blog content. Once you learn how to manage time better, it needn’t be as exhausting as that may sound, and financial success is much more likely. Here are some of the most common roadblocks real estate agents meet on the way to efficiency:

Hoedspruit - Real estate agents: how to manage time better and avoid pitfalls

Not having a clear goal

Although they do exist, there are relatively few ‘all-round’ estate agents. Honing in on one area is a good idea, not only to get the focus and depth of knowledge required, but also to better manage your time. Choose your specialism based on your interests, and what’s available to you: will you trade in raw land, commercial real estate, residential real estate in a particular area or second homes? Set your goals in order to have better time management at work, and a clearer path to success.

Not knowing their daily tasks

If your timekeeping isn’t under control yet, you can only really learn how to manage time better by knowing what your tasks are. You’ll need to take stock of your daily and weekly tasks by tracking, either manually or using a handy online tracking tool, exactly how long each of your jobs over the course of a week takes. From this data you can identify what your main tasks are, how many hours they take each, and whether they’re a priority for you; then you can build a schedule.

Hoedspruit - Real estate agents: how to manage time better and avoid pitfalls

Not planning ahead

Planning is imperative to business success from the outset, and since you’re self-employed, you have complete free reign over your goals and timescales. Start from long-term business and financial goals and then extrapolate down, creating a yearly, monthly and then weekly plan. From the weekly and monthly plans and your ‘task-tracking’ data, you can extract a detailed daily list of tasks with a realistic time frame, so you shouldn’t find yourself scrambling around on a Sunday trying to complete your weekly tasks.

Not keeping office hours

Time management at work can be easier in an office than by yourself, as you’ll see other colleagues keeping to routine. But just because you don’t clock in and out, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be strict with your office hours.

Give yourself a morning start time and don’t miss it, even if you’re working from home. While you can plan exactly how long you’ll spend on emails, you’ll need to schedule yourself a bit of leeway when it comes to tasks like viewings, as these can be more flexible than you might think. Office-hour scheduling works both ways, so be sure to schedule in ‘you’ time.

Besides knowing how to manage time better, there are a few qualifications that could really increase your success and productivity as a real estate agent. Joining a firm like Engel & Völkers could help you learn all the skills of the trade as well as the time management tricks you need to propel you upwards in your real estate career. Find out more today.

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