Why you should NOT become a real estate agent!
One of the easiest conversation starters is asking people what they do for work. You are hoping they will tell you they do something you personally find interesting like being an on-sight photographer for National Geographic. However, usually is something I don't understand and on the surface sounds a bit mundane.
When people discover that I am a Realtor, I receive a few responses such as, "Wow, this must be a great market to be in!" The number one question is, "So, how is the market." It is VERY COMMON for a person to reply, "You know, I have always been told I should be a Realtor." The tell-all is the next comment, "I mean, I love looking at houses and I like people."
When I say tell-all, I am not saying that one shouldn't consider real estate if that is their only two motives. If you don't love houses or people it could be a terrible profession for you! I am conveying that this formula alone will not sustain you if you are looking to make real estate a career.
So many people see real estate as an opportunity to make easy money, have a flexible schedule and get to look at homes all day. I can tell you that after 12 years of full-time experience, I would never call this an easy job that provides a flexible schedule. In fact, working only 40 hours within a 5 day work week would be amazing. It is usually closer to 7 days and working around 80 hours. As for easy, this job will break you.
No one prepares you for being a marketing director, psychologist, taxi-cab driver and staging consultant, burying signs in the heat, always on call, and being paid commission only with more expenses than you ever expected to pay whether you are selling homes or not. Did I mention that you have to pay for your own healthcare and file your own taxes?
Therefore, if you are looking for HGTV easy and flexible, you most likely won't make it. HOWEVER, if you really care about people and know how important it is for families to be able to plant roots in a community where their kids can grow up and you are willing to anchor yourself to integrity and hard work, you can make it. If you are willing to work hard for your clients and adapting to your services to what they need, then you can do this.
A career in real estate is rewarding! There is no easy money to be made but there is wealth that can come through hard work. As you grow, you will learn ways to delegate some of the tasks above and have a better work-life balance. That is one of my goals as an owner of a firm. I not only want to see agents succeed at business, I want them to win in their personal lives which is what really matters.