Part one of my new series on the realities of real estate.

Today I want to introduce the first of a three-part series I’m starting that should be useful for new and experienced agents alike. It’s all about the realities of being a Realtor, and this episode will focus on building a business, not getting your ideas from television, and more.

First, real estate isn’t all about sales. Obviously, your job on paper is to help clients buy and sell homes, and while that is important, this industry is more about building a business. If you focus solely on sales, your income will fluctuate wildly based on market conditions, the whims of your clients, the number of hours you invest, and so on. The bottom line is this: When you only pay attention to sales, your income will dry up the second you stop selling.

Second, this industry isn’t like HGTV. An addiction to real estate shows isn’t a sign you’re cut out to be a Realtor; it just means you have too much time on your hands. I’ve heard so many agent candidates tell me, “I just love looking at houses so much,” but this job is more about looking towards your clients. What you personally think about a property doesn’t matter at all. In fact, once you show a fussy pair of buyers their twelfth home in one day, walking through the front door of another one will probably make you nauseous.

“This industry is more about building a business than sales.”

Third, there is a significant lag between starting off and getting paid. Some estimates say it takes about six months before most agents see their first paycheck. Depending on how quickly you pick up the business, it could take even longer. A big reason for this is that it takes a considerable amount of time to get your license, and after that, there’s no guarantee you’ll find business.

Last, brokers want their money upfront. Although you may not be making any money, you can bet that your broker is. They stay in business by charging desk fees, training fees, and more. Additionally, you need to have money set aside for things such as MLS dues and license fees. If you want additional training, it will probably be 100% on you to seek it out. In-house training has improved from the days when you were given a desk and a book of numbers and told to start calling, but it’s still sparse. While many brokerages tout their training programs, they’re mostly focused on having you sign their contract.

If you learned something from this blog post, stay tuned for the next two episodes. As always, you can call or email me with any questions you might have. I look forward to hearing from you!

Part 2 | Part 3