The real estate profession looks glamorous. If you’ve met a successful agent, you might have seen them wear a 3-piece suit to work, drive a fancy car, and live an expensive lifestyle.
Is real estate as glamorous as it seems?
The truth is, real estate is a lot of work. The success you see on the outside comes from hours upon hours of hard work. That’s not to say there isn’t joy in real estate, but agents do work hard for their money.
So what is it about real estate that makes it so challenging, and are these the kinds of challenges you are willing to face in your career? To figure this out, we invite you to reflect on the following:
Do you like running your own business?
Do you like being an employee with a set salary and someone to report to? Or do you see yourself running your own business and being your own boss?
In real estate, you are essentially your own boss. While this sounds glamorous, this means that you are solely responsible for how your business is doing. This means being your own CFO, CEO, COO, and staff. Are you prepared for this responsibility?
If you’re not sure yet, there are tons of resources like The Economist (here) and Forbes (here) that can educate you in entrepreneurship to see if it’s right for you.
Are you a self-starter?
In order to be competitive in the real estate industry, you have to have the discipline and determination to make things happen on your own. You can only get out as much as you put in, and the only one who will be there to put your nose to the grindstone is you. This is not only crucial to your success; this is crucial to survival in this competitive industry.
There will be many days as an agent when you will have only one hour-long appointment and the rest of the day open. What will you do? You can prospect, make phone calls, plan, keep up with correspondences. But you cannot do nothing. You have to be able to plan things for yourself because, in reality, you are the business.
Famed real estate agent Ryan Serhant explains in his book Sell it Like Serhant how to be a self-starter through his Finder, Keeper, Doer Method. Check out how he structures his day here.
Can you cope well with stress and rejection?
Sales professionals in general have to face stress and rejection on a daily basis. Sometimes there are months of no success, and the pressure starts to set in. You have to be able to cope with this pressure so you can keep working at full force every day to get the next sale.
One day, you might think a sale is going beautifully, and the next you could get the dreaded call that you’ve been dropped. The reason could be completely outside of your control, and they might not even give you a reason. On top of that, you are responsible for your client’s happiness, and if they are unhappy or stressed, they might displace this energy onto you. You have to receive this energy with grace and act as their comforter and guide through the process. No matter what, you need to have the mindset that keeps you going against stressful circumstances in a competitive industry.
An entertaining book and audiobook on coping with stress is The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*** by Mark Manson. He gives a humorous, no-nonsense approach to life that will help you prioritize your life and take rejection less personally. Find it on Amazon and Audible here.
Do you want a stable income?
Real estate agents get paid by commission; that is, their pay depends on how much they sell. This makes their income unpredictable. They don’t have a fixed salary and leave their payments up to fate...and hard work. You can still get a very stable income. It just requires a lot of work to ensure you get the returns you need out of a fickle industry.
You can get an idea of the earning potential of a real estate agent here.
Can you think on your feet?
Sales involves a lot of interpersonal skills and speaking skills. You need to be able to think on your feet and make a convincing but honest argument. You need to be able to communicate your ideas clearly and professionally and negotiate with personalities that may be different from your own. If you feel like you have these skills, real estate may be for you. And you can always improve these skills through courses like Dale Carnegie Professional Training Courses (found here).
Do you have passion for real estate?
This might be the most important factor. Anyone with a deep passion for what they do will inevitably do everything they can to be successful in it. If your real estate skills need work but you are truly passionate about getting into real estate, you can work to gain the skills. But if you lack passion, you cannot succeed.
Although it’s not for everyone, becoming a real estate agent has many perks. You get to help people make one of the biggest financial investments of their lives, and when the process goes smoothly you can say you helped make that happen.
We hope these questions inform you about the real estate industry and encourage you to look into joining this exciting field. Want to learn more from someone on Our Team? Feel free to Contact Us. We're happy to help.