Keeping The ‘Real’ In Real Estate
For over 40 years, Park Regency has been the mainstay for all things real estate throughout the San Fernando Valley and surrounding areas. We can attribute our success to not only putting the customer first every time, but also because we operate as brokerage that puts our real estate agents first. It’s for this reason that Park Regency has been able to grow and flourish from its roots in Granada Hills to the following areas:
If you’re new to the real estate scene, keep reading to learn more about how to choose the best brokerage for when you’re just starting out.
Why Work With A Real Estate Broker?
Why is broker selection so important? In your first year as a real estate agent, you’ll have a ton of questions, uncertainties, and getting-your-feet-wet experiences. You’ll need to choose a real estate broker that will be there with you each step of the way.
When you’re first starting out, you won’t have the funds to compete with the big real estate brokerages when it comes to marketing, lead generation, and conversion. You’ll need a broker’s help getting your name out there, and you’ll want to use the broker’s tools and systems to kick your career into action.
How To Choose A Real Estate Broker That’s Right For You
If you’re a new real estate professional on the block, you can truly benefit from the resources a brokerage has to offer. However, you might be wondering how you can choose the right brokerage to jumpstart your career in real estate. At Park Regency, we care about and invest in the success of all of our real estate agents. Because we believe everybody should have the opportunity to thrive, we’ve created this guide for how to choose the right real estate brokerage for you.
Let’s get started!
Think Long-Term (Not Just Commission)
When it comes to choosing a real estate broker, new agents shouldn’t be hyper-focused on the commission-split aspect. With certain brokers, there may be more services, resources, and/or training available, which can pay-off more in the long run for your fledgling business. We advise that real estate professionals new to the scene don’t always opt for the higher split--because sometimes a lower commission can actually mean more money pocket due to the leads and connections provided by your broker.
Even when you choose the perfect brokerage and are given a plug-in on their website, it will still be important to build your very own real estate website. In the digital age, real estate is more fast-paced than ever and even though a broker is a good starting point, you should be building the tools to succeed on your own.
Calculate All Of Your Expenses
In order to accurately calculate all of your expenses, we recommend starting a spreadsheet that breaks down your income needs, personal expenses, and projected expenses as a new real estate professional business. You can also build out this spreadsheet to compare and contrast the services, resources, and commissions of prospective brokerages.
For example if a brokerage gives its real estate agents printed ad space but offers a lower commission split, the exposure might still actually pay-off more--and save you the expense of paying for print ads out of pocket.
Compare + Contrast Leads
Next, you’ll want to ask each prospective broker about their lead generation approach, methods, and results. It’s important to ask any brokerage you might work with about their projections for floor time leads, phone lead up-time, website leads, etc.?
Ask About Training + Mentoring
Because your training and experience as a new real estate professional is unique, it will be important for you to find the broker that has the training and mentoring resources you can benefit from the most. It’s more than normal for new real estate agents to seek out training in contracts, negotiating, and other procedures that are predominant in a specific market area. However, your need(s) for sales/marketing training or motivational speakers can differ from the next real estate professional.
It’s important to remember that any training or mentoring services come with a cost and are an investment in your career. The trade-off for working with a brokerage and utilizing their training resources could look like a temporary lower commission split or even a per-transaction charge or percentage. The important thing to remember is to invest in skills that you can either take elsewhere or use to grow your own business on your own!
Account For Additional Office Expenses
Because today’s market is so competitive and Internet-based, many traditional real estate brokerages are now starting to charge for resources such as copies and certain phone services. Be sure to ask any potential brokerages about any office expenditures not included in their fees, Errors and Omissions Insurance, and other per-transaction charges.
For some new real estate agents, working with a more digital-oriented brokerage is the best call if you have the resources and space to complete your office work from home. Although you might receive fewer services and opportunities, you can walk away with a higher commission potentially.
Consider The Overall Work Culture
When you first start looking for a real estate brokerage, it’s important to think about the kind of company you want to work for. We suggest that any new real estate professional ask themselves the following questions:
- How much support do I want from my coworkers?
- Am I looking for a small, mom-and-pop brokerage with an intimate, family-like brokerage culture?
- Would I grow and thrive better, professionally, in a big-box franchise brokerage where I have to fend for myself?
- Would I benefit from weekly get-togethers and company caravans on open house day?
To get a feel for a brokerage’s overall company culture, we suggest talking to agents who have worked there for over a year and/or attending a company function.
Independent vs. Franchise Brokerages
As mentioned earlier, one of the biggest decisions you’ll have to make when choosing a brokerage is deciding whether or not you want to work for a franchise or independent brokerage. Big-name brokers such as RE/MAX or Keller Williams have offices all over the country and are essentially household names. However, a smaller, mom-and-pop brokerage might have generations of experience serving a particular community, city, or county. Keep in mind that franchises tend to be more bureaucratic than independent brokerages, but they will offer more cost-effective support and training. Independent firms are usually locally based and are comprised of a small to medium-sized team, allowing you to work closely with mentors and colleagues while still remaining independent.
According to The National Association of REALTORS®, the majority of real estate professionals (57%) have reported that they choose to work for independent firms. If you want to avoid corporate culture and work with a smaller group of professionals, an independent brokerage might be the best route. However, franchises remain equally valid due to the many resources they offer when it comes to information and training, marketing, and support—and of course, name recognition.
Research + Reputation
When first looking for potential brokerages, begin with a simple Google search, pretending that you are a buyer in your area. In the search box, type “homes for sale in [community name]” and see what brokerages come up on the first page. Brokerages that have an established reputation will translate to higher search rankings and a well-cultivated internet presence. In the Digital Age, utilizing Google, SEO, and social media are all essential to capturing leads and staying relevant in your market area.
Because We Care’ Real Estate Brokers
Do you have any additional questions about how to choose the best real estate brokerage for your budding career? Feel free to contact Park Regency with any queries and to learn more about our training opportunities and speaking events! Call us today at 818.363.6116.