You’ve completed your courses, passed your exams and received your license to trade in real estate! If you haven’t already, now is the time to start interviewing brokerages. The traditional illustration of an interview is of a firm hiring an employee. In the real estate industry, things are a little bit different. As much as a brokerage is interviewing and selecting an agent, so is an agent interviewing and selecting a brokerage.
When interviewing different brokerages, there a number of factors to consider. A good proportion of agents believe that finding a brokerage that offers the best commission split is what is going to determine their success and ultimately their choice on which brokerage to choose. Commission splits have very little to do with your success and how much money you earn in real estate. I’m not saying it’s not important, but at the end of the day 80% of nothing equals nothing. What is important, is whether or not the brokerage you are aligning yourself with shares the same vision as you. Do they offer you the support and tools you need to get started and stay focused? Does the training they provide meet the various needs of your business, taking into account the different stages you will encounter or is it primarily focused on areas that have little to do with making you a better agent? Having spent a good portion of my career working with new agents, I know that the best way to help an agent increase the chances of success, are to get them focusing on the activities that are going to generate business, and ultimately generate revenue. There is equal importance for me, in assisting agents to continuously increase their level of competency, which in turn raises the bar of professionalism in our industry.
When selecting a brokerage to work for, in addition to commission and training, ask about the managerial experience. Are they competing/selling managers? Are they available during the evening and weekend hours to answer questions and assist? How about their administrative support? Would you find it beneficial to have your brokerage have live personnel answering your calls, booking appointments or typing your offers? If you intend on offering your clients a full service menu – it would be wise that your brokerage do the same for you. There are so many other areas to research, but a quick way to determine whether or not your brokerage is the right fit for you – Sit in the lobby and observe what is going on around you. You can get a pretty good gauge on morale, office culture and friendly-factor by observing the daily business interactions between agents and support staff. Why does that matter? Your office is your second home. Isn’t it wise to choose one that is supportive, friendly and representative of who you are?