1) No Business Plan
When you become a real estate agent you’re essentially starting your own business. However, many real estate professionals have no clear goals or timeline for achieving their them. Without a real estate business plan, it’s far too easy to spend time and money in ways that don’t pay off. Creating a real estate business plan will allow you to identify your short and long-term goals and outline how you plan to achieve them.
2) Lack of Funding
Becoming a real estate agent costs money. Like any entrepreneur, you need a funding source in place to build your business. Whether that means asking family for help, working a part-time job or taking out a small business loan, it’s important that you have at least three months of reserves in savings before making the leap to a full-time agent. It may be difficult at first, but it’s important to remember that countless individuals have made the transition from part-time employee to successful, full-time real estate agent.
3) Expecting Immediate Success
Good things take time. Though it’s likely that you’re eager to make a name for yourself in the real estate industry, you need to be reasonable in your expectations of how long it will take to launch your career. Statistically, it takes at least two months to make your first sale as a real estate agent, and can take you up to two years to begin making a comfortable living from your business.
4) Not Focusing Marketing Efforts in the Most Effective Areas
One reason new real estate agents end up overspending on real estate marketing is because they spend it in the wrong place. In general, they use their budget for print marketing—newspapers, real estate magazines, etc.— because it’s most visible. In today’s marketplace, these channels often yield a low return on investment. Instead of shelling out precious capital in the beginning, write down who you know in your personal sphere of influence. Promote your new real estate business on social networks like LinkedIn and Facebook. Focusing on building out your referral network may deliver stronger results in the long run. And check out our blog post, Top Real Estate Agent Expenses to get an overview of top agent expenses.
5) Choosing a Brokerage for the Wrong Reason
One of the most important decisions a new real estate professional can make is what brokerage they wish to belong to. Real estate agents choose their new broker for a number of reasons—they have a good reputation, they offer the most competitive split, the office is close to their house, and so on. While these are all valid reasons for choosing a brokerage, they aren’t necessarily the correct ones. A broker’s purpose is to help new real estate professionals establish successful careers, so your primary concern should be what the brokerage is offering you in terms of support.
6) Lack of learning
New agents need to take advantage of every learning opportunity they can: enroll in free and paid courses, attend seminars, choose continuing education and professional development courses that will advance your career. And importantly, find a really great mentor.