Entrepreneurship

How to Become a Real Estate Agent; a Guide to Success

With the growing population and increased demand for residential and commercial property in all big cities as well as in small towns, a career in real estate can be highly rewarding and fulfilling. So, getting into the real estate business is surely a great idea, whether you want to start fresh or looking to switch careers.

However, to make sure you are successful in the trade, you need hard and smart work. Though you can become a real estate business owner on your own and there are several highly profitable real estate business ideas that may attract your attention, the best way is to get hired by a real estate broker first, learn the trade and then start your own business.

People when they want to sell off their property, look for the best real estate agent to handle the sale, because they do not want to end up selling their property for less than its value, or even worse, do not want to have a sale that takes too long to happen. A similar approach is followed by buyers and those who want to rent a property, i.e. need of a good real estate broker is equally essential almost everywhere in the world.

So, if you are looking to become a real estate agent, you must stand out among the crowd. This article will help you become a highly demanded and successful real estate agent and will answer most of your questions related to becoming a real estate agent, broker or realtor.

Most Common Questions You May Have When Getting into Real Estate Business

While planning to start a career in real estate, you may find yourself overwhelmed with too many questions like these:

  • Can you make good money as a real estate agent?
  • What qualifications do you need to be a real estate agent?
  • What skills do I need for real estate?
  • Is it hard to be Realtor?
  • How many years does it take to become a Realtor?
  • Is real estate a good career?
  • What hours do estate agents work?
  • Is being an estate agent a stressful job?
  • Do most real estate agents fail?
  • Is it worth becoming a realtor?
  • Do you need a college degree to be in real estate?
  • What is the highest paying job in real estate?
  • Is becoming a part time real estate agent worth it?
  • What is the best way to get started in real estate?
  • Should I work with a real estate agent before starting my own business?
  • What are the greatest benefits of being a real estate agent?
  • What personality type makes a good real estate agent?
  • Can I become an estate agent with no experience?
  • Can you make money your first year in real estate?
  • Are real estate agents in demand?
  • Why do most real estate agents fail?
  • How do I succeed in real estate in the first year?
  • Is real estate oversaturated?
  • What are the downsides of being a real estate agent?
  • What is the difference between a realtor and a real estate agent?
  • How do you start a real estate career with no money?

Well, let me answer these questions in a group first, so the step by step guide to become a real estate agent and or a realtor becomes easy.

Is Real Estate a Good Career?

If you are concerned about:

  • Whether the real estate agents are in demand or not.
  • Can you make good money as a real estate agent?
  • Can you become an estate agent with no experience?
  • If the real estate market is oversaturated.
  • Are there any highest paying jobs in real estate?
  • Can you make money your first year in real estate?
  • Is real estate a good career overall?
  • The best way to get started in real estate.
  • Should I work with a real estate agent before starting my own business?

The answer is yes, real estate is a good and among highly paid careers, even if the market in a particular city is oversaturated, you can make good money with strategic moves within the city or by expanding your network in the surroundings. And yes, you can start working for someone else, gain experience and then set up your own business.

What Does it Take to Become a Real Estate Agent

Next comes a series of questions about what it takes to become a real estate agent. Read on to know the compact answer to the following questions:

  • Basic qualifications to be a real estate agent.
  • What skills do you need for getting into real estate?
  • What personality type makes a good real estate agent?
  • Is becoming a part time real estate agent worth it?
  • Do you need a college degree to be in real estate?

Well, the best thing about a career in real estate is that it’s among the highest paying jobs without a degree, so yes, you do not need a degree to get into real estate. However, in the United States, most states require a minimum of 30 to 90 hours of classroom instruction from an accredited college, university or technical school (a course covering real estate fundamentals), and passing an official exam that covers real estate standards and practices, national real estate law and laws that affect that particular state.

Moreover, each state has its own requirements to become a licensed real estate agent. Typically, real estate licenses are renewed every year and a real estate agent is supposed to pay an annual fee for his or her license. Some states may require a certain amount of continuing education for license renewal.

And When it comes to the skills needed to become a real estate agent, the list is not limited to a few, but the following are the essentials to get started.

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Quick adaptability to changes 
  • Quick learner
  • People’s skills
  • Time management skills
  • Negotiation skills
  • Marketing and sales skills

Stress & Challenges Associated with Real Estate

Just like any other career, there are several challenges and stress factors associated with careers in real estate. You may have questions in mind like:

  • What hours do estate agents work?
  • Is being an estate agent a stressful job?
  • Why do most real estate agents fail?
  • What are the downsides of being a real estate agent?

As a matter of fact, being a real estate agent can be incredibly rewarding, but one must know that it is an equally challenging and demanding job. You might need to work beyond 9 to 5, and at times weekends too. You will have to interact directly with people of all kinds, and some of them may not be kind.  

So yes, a real estate job can be stressful not just because of extensive work hours and client dealing, but also because of the uncertainty of the income, lack of benefits (that other jobs offer), fluctuating values of properties, and the risks associated with meeting strangers in vacant homes, etc. 

Becoming a successful real estate agent and making a sustainable income being a broker is both hard and smart work. So, it does require you to have both skills, courage and ability to face the unexpected challenges.

The Difference Between Real Estate Agent and Realtor

If you are new to real estate and looking to get into the field, it’s very likely to find ‘real estate agent’ and ‘realtor’ confusing, and you might have these questions popping in your mind:

  • What is the difference between a realtor and a real estate agent?
  • Is it hard to be Realtor?
  • How many years does it take to become a Realtor?
  • Is it worth becoming a realtor?

A real estate agent is a licensed professional who assists people in the buying, selling and renting of properties. A realtor on the other hand is a real estate agent who is an active member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). So, not all real estate agents are realtors, nor are all realtors necessarily active real estate agents.

The NAR is the largest trade association in the United States and the real estate agents who would like to join the organization to become realtors must have a valid real estate license and an immaculate professional conduct record. A real estate agent is required to enroll in the local chapter of NAR, take an online course on Code of Ethics and pass the exam to become a realtor. Realtors are required to retake the exam every four years to maintain the certification.

By becoming an active member of NAR, the realtors get the chance to attract more clients through the extensive network of NAR. They are also required to adhere to an extensive Code of Ethics which ensures consumers that they are working with well-vetted and highly qualified agents.

How to Become a Successful Real Estate Agent

So, now you know all that it takes to become a successful real estate agent and grow yourself to become a realtor, the next move is to take actionable steps to start a successful career in real estate. Read on to know the step by step procedure for becoming a certified real estate agent and grow your career to the next level.

1- Get Certified

No matter how enthusiastic you are for getting into real estate, you cannot start without getting the basic certification. It involves the following three key steps:

  • Take a pre-licensing course. Usually it’s an online course offered by a college, university or an authorized technical school.
  • Pass your state licensing exam.
  • File a real estate license application.

When done with the above three steps, you are a licensed real estate agent, however, you might not want to start your own business at this stage and instead join a real estate company to learn the trade better.

2- Gain Market Knowledge

While you are working with an agency, you must know that the first important thing clients must check in a real estate agent is whether he has a good knowledge of the market their property is situated in. He should know what the supply-demand situation in the region is, what a particular property is valued at, and the facilities around the property and so on. If they feel that the agent does not seem too knowledgeable about the real estate market, then they move forward to look for another agent.

So, the first and most important thing you learn is to acquire the market knowledge and update yourself with the changing trends.

3- More Properties Sold = Better Portfolio

Remember that when you will be building your own real estate agency, what will attract most property owners to you is the number of sold properties. People tend to work easily with the agents who have sold more properties, especially, those who have sold a property similar to theirs in type and value? And that too within their locality? If so, then they might find you to be a good choice to act as their agent. If a particular agent has sufficient experience but has not sold any property in the specific market, clients normally avoid them.

So, while working for an agency, selling more properties should be your goal. Of course, it will help your current company as of now, but actually it is building your portfolio.

4- Build a Great Client List

A successful real estate agent will have numerous clients, who will be willing to testify as to the professionalism and the quality of service he provides. Property owners carefully check out the references the agent gives them, so it’s better to work with a reputed real estate agent before starting your own. Plus, there are also many internet forums which will have reviews about particular real estate agents, so make sure to have presence there and get your clients write testimonials for you on these forums.

5- Leave Great Impression to Your Clients

A big point to consider is what impression an agent leaves in the minds of other people. An ideal agent is someone who can easily make the potential buyers feel comfortable, easing them into his sales talk and leaving a very strong impression that increases the chance of a sale. If an agent does not have such qualities, then he will have a tough time selling the property on time at the expected rate.

6- Have Psychological Insight

A real estate agent should have the psychological insight into the minds of potential buyers. As this blog shows, buyers may not trust the selling agents too much since they realize that the agents simply want to sell off the property and earn their commissions. And this is why it is even more important that the real estate agent you hire must know what the buyer is thinking so that he can craft his presentation in a way that makes the deal seem very attractive to them.

Most of the property sellers will ensure that the real estate agent they pick has the above qualities, so make sure you build your business based on the above guidelines you will surely become a great real estate agent!

The Bottom Line

Getting into real estate is not as easy as it may seem; it’s a challenging field and may bring a lot of stress and situations that are difficult to deal. But if you are someone with strong nerves, and love working outdoors, meeting new people and you intend to build an empire with your vision, hard work and strategic planning, becoming a real estate and or realtor is your best deal!