Real Estate provides a career that has unlimited potential for income — which means you could make a lot if you work hard, or only a little (or nothing) if you don’t. It offers you a very flexible schedule — though often irregular hours — because you need to be available to show properties when your clients are available.
The process of becoming a licensed professional in the real estate industry differs from state to state and country to country. Most real estate agents and brokers are required to have a certain number of hours of pre-licensing education – and, in some cases, experience – to become fully licensed.
Find out the general requirements for becoming a real estate agent in your state. There is an exam you’ll have to pass that may differ in every state. You may also be required to take some related courses in preparation for the exam.
You don’t need a degree from a four-year university. However, having a degree is a good idea if you eventually want to become a broker (the one who manages all the real estate agents). It is also a good idea to have knowledge of business, marketing, economics and law. To succeed in the field, this is a good starting point to learn what you’re going to be dealing with.
Make sure this is something you want to do. All of your time is spent making contacts with clients, prospecting, and simply getting yourself and your name in front of others. Though you will be connected with a real estate company, you are essentially working for yourself, which means taking care of your own lead generation, your own office management, and all your own advertising, education, scheduling, and paperwork. Are you looking to start your own business? That’s what real estate is.
Make sure you have cash set aside. When you’re just starting a job that is totally commission-based, it may take some time before you actually start making money. Because of this, it’s important to have some money saved up to get you through those rainy days.
Get to know your market. Every place is a bit different. Go around the area you plan on working and watch the agents. Note the current inventory and how it all works. Use technology. Internet searches can be very helpful. Then there are apps like a real estate agent checklist.
Be desirable to brokers. Brokers are looking for personality, a business plan, and the right skill set. They want to see that you know what you’re getting into (it can be a lot of work!) and that their demands and goals meet what you plan to accomplish. Also, make sure your broker is going to be helpful to you. In the beginning you’ll probably have lots of questions. You need to work with someone who will take the time to help you.