Brand new Agent struggling to get started.

I'm a brand new agent. I am having trouble getting started. I'm stating to feel like the company that I chose is more for the experience Agent. I do have a mentor but all of our agents work from home so it's very rare to see anyone in the office. I do have a mentor and he's great just not usually in the office. And he has another office in another county. Should I continue with this company or should I look into another company? I have only been with them for two weeks. Am I second guessing to early?
  • September 23 2013 - Murfreesboro
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Answers (16)

Profile picture for Outer Banks N C
All working at home is not what you want. You want to be in an office where even the water cooler talk is helpful to a new agent seeking experience. You want a company that has training and shows you how to fill out contracts, how to market, how to answer questions and objections. How to do CMA's. You want to be doing floor duty. I would think about companies offering all that and not focus on the larger commission splits yet in your career.

Good luck
  • September 23 2013
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Angela, I am in a similar place as you are. For myself I have been searching out another company where my mentor will play a larger role, as he has been fairly disappointing so far when it comes to helping me out. Another thing to look for as a new agent is possibly looking into companies that offer lower/no fees because it gets spendy when there are no sales coming in.
  • September 23 2013
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Welcome to the world of Real Estate.  It is not the company.  All companies are about the same these days.  Most agents work from home.

When you went to real estate school what expectations did they give you?

Back when the phones rang all the time, homes were advertised in the newspaper, there were no internet sites to search for homes, buyers came into offices, sellers called asking for their homes to be listed - I was told - "Don't expect to see a pay check for at least 6 months."  It was true.

The reality is, and I don't mean to be harsh but realistic, after two weeks you have not even learned how to get a transaction from contract to closing.  You are a brand new agent with more questions than answers.

Don't wait for your mentor to help you.  Ask your mentor to allow you to listen in on cold calls he makes.  Ask him to take you on a listing appointment as an observer.  Ask him to allow you to sit in when he writes up a sales contract.  You have to learn what to say and how to say it. 

If you are not assertive you will not succeed.  I believe the attrition rate for new agents is about 50% .  This business is work.  Nothing comes easy.

Remember that sphere of influence you heard talked about?  That's where you start.  Real estate is all about who you know and who knows what your business is. It costs money to get people to know you and want to do business with you.  Buyers or sellers are not out there looking for you.

Those of us who have an active practice also have huge expenses for advertising, web sites, mailings etc.

  • September 23 2013
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Profile picture for Outer Banks N C
Daniel and Angela,

You should be looking for offices that offer a commission but that do not charge you fees. At your stage it is ridiculous to be paying any desk fees for a bigger commission split, that's crazy. Most companies offer a 45/65 or 50/50 split to a new agent and you pay nothing. If you sell nothing, you earn nothing. If you sell you make money, that is the way to start so it is not all money going out and nothing coming in. Most national companies offer this.


tim
  • September 23 2013
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Thanks for all of your advice! Does anyone know how/if you can delete a post?
  • September 23 2013
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I chose the company I did because of all the training it has to offer, and  I think their commission splits are incredibly fair with 0 desk fees or other hidden fees to cope with.
Daily 1 hr training sessions are free, lots and lots of online training sessions for free. The list goes on.

The things I have found most helpful about this company is that while many agents work from home, there are so many agents in our offices that someone is always in the office and willing to help me out. Whether I'm having trouble with our company software or the MLS site is giving me trouble I can ask someone easily. If you aren't getting this... You might want to consider another firm. 
  • September 26 2013
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Profile picture for Neeraj Jassal
I have mentored several agents.  I have given them some basic principles when they get started:

1.  Don't expect your brokerage to provide you with leads.  You are your own business and you must find a way to earn your own clientele.

2.  I would not mentor someone who does not have high ambitions or possesses low moral code.  Treat your clients as you would want to be treated.  If you are someone who cuts corners or display greed, I would not waste my time.

3.  I learned a long time ago that the customer is always right - even when they're wrong, they're right.  How is that possible?  If they are not happy about something, it is your job to determine what they are distressed about and either make it right or get an explanation.  Even when you get frustrated, if you can understand this basic concept, you will be doing right by them and and nothing else is more important than that.

4.  Don't be fake.  Be honest, don't make excuses and never, ever lie.  Live and work by high standards even if others are not.

5.  If you don't have thick skin, get some.  There will be times when your feelings will be hurt (especially in the beginning) but you will have to earn your stripes.  Learn the lesson that sometimes your closest friends/family may not want to do business with you - and understand that by not working with them, saving a relationship trumps a good/bad business transaction.  It's not always about business.

6.  You are not Ari Gold - trust me, you are not that important, and if you have that kind of ego, people won't respect you.  It's okay to be proud when you achieve some success but showing humility and compassion for others is always, always the right way to behave.  Act like you have been there before.

7.  If you are working with a client, agent, ancillary party, etc who enters into unscrupulous behavior, don't let them - or find an exit strategy.

8.  If you want to be the best you can be and do something to gain more business, never stop learning.  Ever.  Learn about law, ethics, how things are built, the materials that go in a home, and on and on and on.

9.  Have a realistic 5-7 year business plan.  Most small businesses fail in the first 5 years....and you are a small business.  Set achievable goals but demand much from yourself if you expect to be successful.

10.  Have fun!  While this can be a very demanding profession, you should find a way to enjoy the relationships you develop and many different scenarios you encounter on a day-in, day-out basis.

In short, I don't think it matters if you work for either ABC Realty or XYZ Home Sellers - what matters is how you conduct yourself.  If you think the place that you are currently at is not right for you, then perhaps you need to go interview another brokerage (instead of them interviewing you) just as if you were a consumer.  If you can show the willingness to work and some of the principles I suggested above, I think you will have a great career!
  • September 26 2013
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Check out/ interview with Keller Williams. BOLD, Ignite, 36:12:3, all courses to give you right now business! Teaches scripts, door knocking, time blocking, mentors available. Contact me if you have any questions...
  • September 26 2013
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The most important thing that  you need to do is take continuing ed classes.  I wish 15 years ago when I started in Real Estate that I had taken classes. There is so much information out there. Its not so much about the certifications but the knowledge you will receive .
  • September 26 2013
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It's a fun business IF you are entrepreneurial. Remember, it's a straight commission job with no benefits and no expense account. Everyone in your office is your competitor. They will not give away good customers. 
But, some people earn huge incomes - based on their skills.
  • September 26 2013
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I am also a brand new agent and my mentor is amazing. She forwards me leads (albeit little ones) but it's really up to you to turn that little lead into a big client. How? Through follow through, hard work, motivation, sincerity, honesty, attitude and of course more but you get the idea. 
On my first offer, my mentor helped me fill out my contract (my buyers weren't present) and then when they came to sign she explained the contract to them and I sat and watched. My clients of course knew I was new and were amazing to work with! 
Not every client will want to work with a new agent and you just have to accept that right now. 
When you do leads don't waste them! They obviously have intent to buy. If they push you off or ignore you, wait a week and email them or call them again and say "I was just following up on so-so". Many people just want to see if you are pursuing them and you are eager to work with them. 
I work in a national branded office and I love it. My corporation doesn't do a lot for me, but they provide me with many, many tools that I just don't utilize until I need them. 
My office, many of the agents work from home but my mentor doesn't and she's the only one that really matters to me. Just because everyone works from home, doesn't mean YOU need to. Go to the office, be seen, wear your name tag around town, create flyers and bulletin boards that feature you and your properties! 
I don't agree with CALL THE SISTERS. Not every agent works from home all day (like no one in my market except maybe the semi-retired), also, who uses mailers - don't waste your money! Start with your sphere of influence? Why on earth would you be a pesky salesperson to your close friends and family? 
FARM your listings by being creative, intuitive, available and PROMPT at responding to questions. Get your name out there anyway you can.

If you think you need an office where they provide trainings and caravan and mentorships, then go get that office. Don't let your attitude about your office cloud your business, because that's what real estate is - its YOUR business. 
  • September 30 2013
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Profile picture for John Reeves1
Find the right real estate company by taking some of the agents that already work within the best companies out for coffee, and have an open and honest discussion with them in order to gather reliable feedback about the companies you're interested in.
Also, try to develop a realistic outlook.   It can be easy to get disillusioned when the reality of your first year of real estate doesn't match the high expectations you had set for yourself.  Optimism isn't a bad thing; just don't lose momentum when you encounter challenging situations.
J. Reeves
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  • October 01 2013
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Find another agent in your office that has a listing in a popular area in that 'hot' first time home buyer price range. Make sure it's just 1-2 turns from a high traffic road and priced at least decently. Then, do that same houses open house every weekend. That way, you are comfortable with the home and have memorized all that looking home buyers ask (age of house, age of roof, age of HVAC, any seller improvements, schools, square footage, gas or electric heating, etc.) Also, know your comparable homes and if the home has a small master closet, find a similar home on the market with a large master closet. Then, if it's vacant, offer to meet them there to see it after your open house.
Doing one open house 2-3 weekends a month for four months my first year of real estate, I made over $40k that year from buyers walking in. Those buyers have sent me over $90k in business since that so in essence, that one four month period of the same open house, made $130k in 9 years of real estate.
You can do it!
Other than that, the best advice is just to help people. Help anyone that you can with anything that you can. Go to parties, do charity work and call old friends for coffee/lunch/happy hour.  Above all else, do you be salesy and be genuine to everyone you meet. Good luck!

  • October 01 2013
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I do believe the office environment is important. My company offers a lot of training which is one of the reasons I chose to work there. See if you can find an office that offers this as well. You need to be with people that are willing to help you out as well. When you start out, doing open houses in my opinion is the quickest way to find buyers to start working with.

Good luck and hang in there...it takes time!

  • October 01 2013
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Profile picture for broker_GRI
If being in an office with bustle and weekly sales meetings is important to you, it may be time to shop other offices.

It's not too early to know if you're a good fit, trust your instinct on this.

As far as learning and networking, I spent my first year in every free class I could get to.

Many providers have free seminars and the local RE board should have resources and weekly tours that will help you learn your area from inside out and …they frequently have food! You'll come to appreciate that the longer you're in the business.

 

The G.R.I. kept me busy, learning and networking with other agents. It may be a "little" expensive for your first year but I felt it to be far better training than the real estate course materials had been.

 

Wish you much success.

  • October 01 2013
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Good Morning

It's very important to remember to interview a company and not have the company interview you and now that you realized what you need, I say that you look at the companies that have the larger market share and see why and compare to see what best fits you. Also talk to other realtors and see why they are with the company and if they only talk about receiving more of their money, then I would suggest you talk with someone else, because that's not the most important thing in the real estate business. You would rather make 50 transactions with a split then 1 with a larger commission share. It's important to start learning how to run your business like a business and it's important to find a company that can help and support you to do that. I'm sorry for long answer...lol
  • October 01 2013
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