I finally got my license and start my new job Friday!

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Congratulations on getting your license and your new job lined up!     I'm not an agent so maybe not the right one to answer most of your questions. 

One thing I would encourage you to look into is yellow letter marketing. Search on it here at BiggerPockets. Maybe set up a yellow letter campaign with an investor where you split the leads depending on what the seller really needs. Done well, I am confident you will get listings.

Congratulations on getting your license!

I recommend reading the following:

  • How much money do you need to save before becoming a real estate agent? (http://investfourmore.com/2014/06/how-much-money-do-you-need-to-save-before-becoming-a-real-estate-agent/ )
  • "21 Things I Wish My Broker Had Told Me" by Frank Cook (Dearborn Real Estate Education 2007).

These will all give you different perspectives on what you need to know to be successful.

Good luck!

I'd say it's probably true what your broker told you about the 1 deal the first year... if at all.

When I took my real estate classes 10 years ago, the instructor told our class of 50, "Look around at everyone in this room.  80% of you won't be in this business 1 year from today.  The 20% that do make it... 90% of you won't be in this business 2 years from today."

Yikes... that' leaves 1 agent out of 50 still in the business after 2 years.  Not good.

You could spend a ton on marketing, but the goal is to get a ROI (Return on Investment).

If you do newspaper ads, heck, any marketing, always have an OFFER!!!!!!! I can't stress this enough. The free CMA and "Call me to sell your house" ain't gonna cut it.

As I just told someone in another thread, and a bazillion others on here... offer a free Home Seller's Guide.  This is a GREAT Lead Generation Magnet to get potential home sellers to raise their hand.  Then, play the "follow up" game.

So, be sure the offer is on all of your marketing whether it's your website, newspaper ad, postcards, business cards, etc.

Also, do open houses.  Ask agents in your office if you can hold open some of their listings.

Target expired listings.  You could pick up the phone and call them (just cost time... which I'm sure you have plenty of).

You could do floor time, as I've seen others suggest on this forum.  But, just check with your broker on the rules.  Some brokers direct all calls on listings to the listing agent, but anything that comes in for general questions is the agent who picks up the phone.

Then there are brokers who say whoever is at the front desk gets all the leads that come in, whether it's a call on someone's listing or not.  So, just check.

You could door knock.  I've never done this, but I've seen agents who are successful at this.  Again, this just costs your time, and you quite possibly have to have nerves of steal, which I don't, hence the reason I've never door knocked.

And, the last thing I'm going to mention, ask agents in your office if they could refer you to any of their call ins.  The top agents will get calls from people they don't want to work with... maybe it's a low-end buyer or renter.  Sure, there's not much money in it, but if you could make a few hundred bucks after paying a referral fee, you're good to go.  Plus... You get to learn the business!

Congratulations Sarah!

The first year as an agent is rough but also exciting and full of opportunity.  The previous posts have some great ideas.  Especially doing open houses since it's a great way to get in front of potential clients and good practice learning about what buyers think about.   The secret to a fantastic career is all about your sphere of influence!  Make sure all of your friends and family know about your new career.  Join groups such as local chambers, charities and social groups.  Figure out how to to add value when you talk to people don't just pitch them.  It takes time to build meaningful relationships but they will continue to reward you throughout your career.

75/25 split with you mentor for the first 5 deals is fair. Starting out, you really need someone there to guide you. Make sure you have a good mentor though. 

You current financial situation will determine how you start. If you are cash strapped, started with being a buyer's agent. Buyer's agent has lower cost, but is not scalable. 

If you are not cash strapped, start with lead gen(for seller leads), there are just too many ways to do that, direct mailing, google, facebook etc

Either way here is a list of things you will need

1. like @David Hunter said, you will need a lead bait, don't do anything without a lead bait. The effectiveness of your lead gen will depended on two thing: your list and your lead bait. 

2. Started a contact database - your long term success in real estate is highly correlated to the size of your contact database. If you only focus on one metrics, focus on growing the size of your contact database.

3. Follow up with your contact regularly - it's just a matter of calling or email them once a while. There are tools to help you do that - contactually works really well for most of agents I talked to.

4. A website - this is your home base. This is where you turn yourself from a real estate sales person into real estate consultant. All outbound marketing effort should drive traffic to your website. 

5. Ask other agents if you can host open house for them - from all the agents I have talked to, this is the best and most efficient way to get buyer leads. You can offer referral fee to the listing agent. 

Being an agent is not an easy business. 50% fail, 40% barely floating, remaining 10% is taking most of the market shares. You goal will need to be that 10%. 

Hope this helps. 

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Well, I haven't started yet. I was talking to my Realtor that I use for REI, and he happened to be starting a team. I walked out of my job that Friday I took my courses online in about a week, and tested a week later. All I'm waiting on now is my background check to clear to start working. I've been shadowing him for a couple days now, and he has more than enough business for me. He's going to do all the listings, and I'll be the buyers agent. I have to give him 50% of my commission, but I'll make up for that in volume. I plan on staying on that for several years, then see if it's growing enough for me to stay or go off on my own. In theory I should be able to make more on the team even in the long run.

Originally posted by @Sarah Stratton:

So does anyone know any agents in Santa Barbara who may need an assistant? :) Lol. Or in general, what are some of the "bigger" well known agencies I can send a generic inquiry email out to? Thanks!

 Just do a search on Google.  Heck, don't necessarily have to go with a big agency, just find the top agents and reach out to them.  Then, go to the broker or managers of the offices and see if they know anyone hiring (they usually know).

@Sarah Stratton

Tell yourself and your broker your not "average".   We were born to think and be above average.  I know you will be above average.

These thoughts come to mind when I hear the words average...... borderline poverty, 401K, working to earn and not to learn, wanting be paid for everything, working only 8 hours a day, out of office reply on your email, thank good it's friday,  glad we hit hump day,  lets get to the lake and relax, stay on the sidewalk....


Originally posted by @Account Closed :

As the title already states, I finally got my license and got hired and start on Friday :)

My broker tells me to not EXPECT to get paid my first year and the average newbie closes about 1 deal their first year, is this true? My commission split is 75 for me and 25 for my mentor for my first 5 deals (after the broker split) is that normal also? And what should I be expecting to do when I first start, I'm super nervous!

Also he already told me about how much to expect to pay in fees and everything, but what about marketing?? What should I expect to pay for that my first year? Also what are some obvious marketing techniques that work for you to help get clients. I have to bring in my own clients and I have no idea how to do that other than some of the "basics" like word of mouth and online/newspaper ads.  Any tips or advice would help thanks so much!

 Hi Sarah; congratulations on the job, and I hope it goes well for you. Are you working for Marcus and Millichap? That sounds quite a lot like what I've heard from them. It seems to me that there's a good amount of information in the responses here, though I am not an agent. I might recommend the book Millionaire Real Estate Agent by Gary Keller (the man behind Keller-Williams Realty, so he definitely knows what he's talking about), and I wish you the best of luck!

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