@Chelsea Burdge congrats on starting the process! It takes a while to find your niche, but being a realtor can be a very fulfilling path for sure. I have personally loved working with investors here in the Berwyn/Oak Park area, and have really found that to be my niche. Don't be surprised if it takes you two or three years to really get this dialed in though.
I would highly recommend you read Mark Ferguson's book. I am not affiliated in any way, but it helped me a lot when I got started. One of his best suggestions (that I didn't take unfortunately) was to start letting your "sphere" know that you are becoming an agent even before you have started the classes potentially! Here is the link to his book:
Chelsea, the first thing you could do is set aside on year of living expenses. Over 70% of new agents give up their license within one year because they can't afford to continue. It's expensive to start and can take 2-3 years to build your business and start earning a good wage. Around 80% of all agents give up within two years. Of those that stick it out, the median income is around $54,000 before counting expenses like licensing fees, MLS dues, insurance, marketing, etc.
It's a great career but it takes a self starter that can work independently and the ability to manage finances well. If you have any specific questions, I am happy to help!
Thank you for the advice! I guess I'm a little confused, every time I think I'm getting it somewhat figured out I get confused again. I do have a few questions
- Is a mortgage broker and a real estate broker the same thing?
- Do I have to become an agent before I can be a broker?
- This may be kind of broad, but I researched jobs around my area for a broker and most of them require a real estate license. Do I need a broker and real estate license to move forward? Is a broker license and real estates license the same thing? Do I need to get the nmls license as well to be a broker?
@Chelsea Burdge a mortgage broker and real estate broker are two different animals. After you attend the school (I did mine 100% online) and pass the tests, background checks, etc. then you must be an "associate broker" for two years before you are allowed to be an independent broker. This means your license is hung with a "broker". It can be a small one person office or a huge office that offers the classes in person. But I would line this up before enrolling so that I knew I had a place to land after I did the work. You should expect to spend $6000 - $10000 out of pocket for schooling, desk fees, insurance, membership fees etc. each year - then there are car expenses, advertising, etc. You need to take a broker to lunch and learn more.
Thank you so much for the advice! It really does help
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