Looking for the best real estate brokerage firm to work with

16 Replies

Good morning! My name is Julie Seger, I relocated to West Michigan 3 years ago from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Now that I am more familiar with the area I have decided to obtain my real estate license. My question for all of you is, how do I decide which brokerage firm to work with? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Julie Seger

@Julie Seger congratulations on becoming a realtor! The answer to your question really lies with what you goals are.  When I started out as a realtor, I knew that I wanted to be an investor friendly agent in the Chicago new west suburbs. There are surprisingly few knowledgeable investor friendly realtors in the areas I work (Berwyn, Brookfield, Riverside,  Oak Park, etc), and I ended up with the brokerage I am with now because they gave me the freedom to pursue my business with investors. 

Some larger, national players will offer more "traditional" training. For instance, I don' have many opportunities to do open houses, etc. This suits me, since I would rather work with folks who discuss cash on cash return and cash flow! If you want to do a lot of traditional business, though, it may be beneficial to work with a big player to get the training and mentoring. 

Suggest you work at a name franchise that has great training program. Keller Williams etc. Desk fee, split(%) is not your priority.  Once you have the client base you can move to high split, local brokers.

Regardless you need to give your 100% putting marketing money out, find someone to work or mentor from. After 1st year if not closing is very common. Most drop out and get discouraged. Personal social contact is the key to become a successful agent.

@Julie Seger - FYI - Every agent I have ever talked with that went to a brokerage for the "training program" was very disappointed.  It's a joke really

Hi @julie sager. I’m in the exact same boat as you. Happy to pm you off line and share my criteria and learnings.

@Julie Seger , it all depends on what you are looking for. I agree with @Brie Schmidt about most of the real estate brokerages. 

Are you looking to move to Chicago or the suburbs and will you be selling full time? Do you know this market or not? Are you looking for leads or are you going to prospect on your own?

Good luck to you!

@Julie Seger even though I am based in Chicago, I have several good connections for you in the Grand Rapids MI area. Message me if you are interested in an introduction. Thx, Ashley

The brokerage doesn't make the broker or agent. The broker or agent does. Meaning you have to have the passion within to be the best everyday and constantly learn to get better.

Most do not which is why the industry has close to a 90% dropout rate.

You will either make yourself not successful, somewhat successful, or wildly successful.  

Some are happy to make 40k,60k,80k a year and live off of transactions. Higher levels make lots of money and then put that money into investments so that closing transactions is a nice bonus but not a necessity for income.  

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Originally posted by Brie Schmidt:
@Julie Seger - FYI - Every agent I have ever talked with that went to a brokerage for the "training program" was very disappointed.  It's a joke really

I think they would be really happy with the training and marketing platform offered by Berkshire Hathaway. We’ve taken in agents from KW who’ve said our training is great. 

@Julie Seger if marketing and training are high on your priority must I think you should give BH a shot. 

I appreciate everyone's responses! I will be in touch with those who offered. It is wonderful to have this network on Bigger Pockets. Have a great day.

@Julie Seger  I am not allowed to self promote so I can't direct you to my own brokerage.  If you need any help or have questions about investing or being a realtor let me know and I would be happy to give advice =)  As the others mentioned it really depends on what your goals are. If you are looking to buy and sell traditional real estate they may be better options out there, however if your focus is investments look for a brokerage that handles investment properties as a focus.  One caveat to low fees is minimal support.  If you are looking for alot of training the larger brokerages may be a good option. 

@Julie Seger my apologies for not responding sooner to Brie's recommendation; however, looks like you've already connected with @Paul Leason . He and I are both with Berkshire Hathaway here in the Grand Rapids area. Many good benefits to their tools and resources. 

Feel free to reach out with any questions... and welcome to West MI. 

My wife and I also moved back to MI from MA (via Chicago - Ha). We've been in the area for 2.5 years. 


Hello Everyone, I wanted to give a quick update. I passed the exam and have decided to work with Coldwell. Thank you all for your insight. I am excited to get started! -Julie Seger

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