6 Steps To Become A Successful Real Estate Agent
If you’ve decided to make a career out of selling real estate, you need to first understand the positive and negative aspects of the industry. Then, you need to do research about the real estate market trends – new U.S. tax laws, rising mortgage rates, etc. There’s a plethora of information you have to know and understand before you can actually make a living in the industry.
What are some of the important information you need to know to ensure success?
Learn About The Licensing Process Of Your State
If you want to become a real estate agent, you must take classes, by the state exam and find an agency to work with. Now, the path to this goal is going to vary from one state to the next. For example, a real estate agent in Arkansas may have become an agent one way while the Missouri agent became an agent another way. It’s the path of getting there that differs.
Still, no matter what the path you choose to become an agent, the first step you take is learning what the right licensing method is for your particular state. If you plan on moving to another state, you may want to look at its requirements as well.
Take Different Pre-Licensing Classes or Courses
Before you can take the real estate license exam, you need to study. And, this tends to involve some classwork. Be prepared to pay $200 or more (depending on where you live). For example, in Georgia, the cost may be $299; while in New York, the cost is nearly $400.
These courses are a necessary part of your education and success of passing the exam. What kinds of courses could you expect to take?
- Real estate basics
- Real estate finance
- Real estate law
- Real estate principles
- Property management
- Business law
- Law of contracts
These classes can be taken at a college or real estate institute. However, if you have a busy schedule, you may find that the online option is the better choice. Make sure to attain your transcripts and certificate once you’re done, as they’ll be needed for the license application.
Most institutions offer exam-prep courses to help you get comfortable with the licensing exam. While they’re not mandatory, they can certainly help you.
Take The Exam
Once you’re done taking all the necessary courses, you can take the test to become a real estate agent. The cost for this can run $300 or more for the application, exam, license, and background checks.
It’s a good idea to take the exam right after you finish your classes. Most states allow a two-year window of attending classes to take retake the exam. If you have not passed the exam in this timeframe, you will need to re-take the classes. Again, be sure to review the laws of your state regarding the window.
What are the chances of you passing it the first time out? Based on information from the Texas Real Estate Commission, 57.4 percent of applications who took the test between February 2016 and February 20198 passed it. If you’re attentive to the material and do the work, the chance of passing it the first time is high.
Realtor vs. Agent: Which One Will You Be?
People make the mistake of interchanging the words real estate agent and realtor, thinking they mean the same thing. They don’t mean the same thing really. A realtor is a part of the National Association of Realtors who pay yearly dues and must adhere to a strict code of ethics. They’re also privy to benefits like reduced-rate continuing education and exclusive marketing resources. While being an agent is good, a realtor is certainly an option worth considering.
Look For A Broker
After you’ve passed your exam and got your license, you need to find a broker to sponsor you – typically for two years. Some states demand that prospective agents find a broker to sponsor them before the exam. Learn what your state’s requirements are.
For the most part, real estate agents don’t get a salary but make commissions on listings and sales. Four entities get these commissions – the listing agent, buyer’s agent and the brokers. Brokers tend to split the commissions with agents on the previously-agreed-upon amount (usually 50/50). Some brokers allow the agents to keep all the commission, but they have to pay a monthly desk fee. This fee covers the use of resources and desk at the broker’s office.
New agents need to reach out to established agents, making friends and connections. It’s always good to have a mentor to help you learn the tricks of the trade (someone who wants you to succeed).
When you reach out to an experienced real estate agent, you can use the information and resources they share to make a name for yourself. If the agent sees you as someone who has a bright future, they’ll do whatever they can to help you succeed.
There is so much work that goes into being a successful real estate agent, and you never stop learning and researching. However, if this is something you could make a real career out of, then all the time and investments you make will be worth it.