By Scott Newman
So you just found out your buddy got a big promotion and is now ready to buy a sexy luxury condo in downtown Chicago. He’s your boy–you’ve known him since grade school–of course he’s going to give you first crack at the business, and you’ve already started spending the commission check. But before you blindly agree to be his agent, stop and think of the potential consequences of working with close friends and how you can make sure it’s a positive experience for both of you.
Treat Them Like Any Other Client
Many real estate pros go one of two ways when they work with friends – and both are bad. The first is when all their professional experience and training goes out the window and they act super lax and unprofessional thinking it will be OK because they know the client.
The other is the agent who takes things so seriously that they literally suck all the fun out of the entire process for the client, who then ends up never wanting to work with–or refer anyone to them–again.
What’s the lesson here? Forget about the personal relationship you have with this particular client and give them the same high level of service and overall experience you provide to all your other clients. If you follow that golden rule, you virtually eliminate the risk of damaging the personal or professional relationship with the client.
Expect To Go Above and Beyond
I have literally seen agents arguing with close friends they are representing while in the hallway outside the closing office. The expectations the client had vs. the expectations the agent had might as well have existed in two separate universes. Continue reading »
By Scott Newman
So you’ve made it through the worst of the real estate bubble, you’ve developed a nice client base, and you’re taking over the entire industry – great! If that’s the case, then this blog isn’t for you.
Instead, this blog focuses on what we as veterans of the industry can share with the newbies to shorten the learning curve and help create another reputable professional who gives our industry a good name.
The following are my top three “I wish I knew that when I first started” tips to make your transition into a real estate career as painless as possible.
1. Simple Math
So many real estate agents come into this business thinking of the riches they’ll make selling homes for a living. Many even come up with lofty goals for themselves, “I’m going to make $200,000 my first year in the business.” Does that sound familiar?
Well, the problem is that most agents don’t stop and break down the math behind creating that kind of volume. They end up focusing on the big picture when it’s the attention to the little details that will create the success they desire.
For example, let’s say you’re new to the business and don’t know a lot of people, and that the average home price in your area is $200,000. Simple math tells us that you will make $3,500 per transaction at that price, assuming you have a 70/30 split. At $3,500 per deal, you’d need to complete 58 transactions a year to make your $200,000 – that’s more than one house a week, which is a large volume even for a veteran real estate pro. Continue reading »
Members of the Young Professionals Network stood tall and proud at NAR’s 360 Thursday, waving U.S. flags in the air to symbolize their commitment to “10 for 10” – investing $10,000 to the REALTOR® Political Action Committee (RPAC) over the next 10 years.
Christian Zarif with Better Homes and Gardens Kansas City and Matt Case with Coldwell Banker Schmidt Family Companies in Traverse City, Mich. (pictured right) are among the more than 50 practitioners who have taken the pledge targeted specifically for young professionals.
RPAC funds are used to promote the election of pro-REALTOR® candidates. “This is the next generation of REALTOR leaders stepping up to the plate,” said 2013 First Vice President Chris Polychron during the REALTORS® Conference & Expo in San Francisco. To learn more about the “10 for 10” pledge, visit www.realtoractioncenter.com/10for10.
By Melissa Krchnak
Do you have a wig?
No, I’m au natural.
I’ve been learning about “The 4 Disciplines of Execution” and getting my Wildly Important Goal (WIG) figured out.
Oh, that kind of a WIG… Yea, I’ve got one of those!
Most of us do not have a problem coming up with great ideas. Hell, we could revolutionize our industry with all the awesome thoughts we have throughout the day. It’s the plan for execution we trip on. Yep, I’ve got those bruises, too.
So, figure out what’s your first domino: What is the “ONE Thing” that will make all your other little goals easier or unnecessary when you achieve it? That, my friends, is your WIG.
There are three other steps, which I will discuss in my future YPN Lounge posts. However, you have to build a rock-solid foundation before you throw up beams and a roof and call it a home. Nail the first discipline then move on to the second.
Melissa Krchnak is the team leader for Keller Williams in Pikesville, MD. Connect with her on Twitter @mkrchnak.
By Lynn Minnick
I’ve just come back from an amazing summer in Europe with my young family. The time had come again to get off the continent for vacation, because we all know that if you’re somewhere reachable, it’s going to happen that clients and other agents will find you. In the past 10 years or so, doesn’t it seem like everyone feels they can still contact you when you’re clearly not at work? I blame technology.
For the first week I admit I didn’t think about work for even a nanosecond. By week two, a few stray thoughts crossed my mind (mostly about buying a little castle and staying forever), and I was drunk on British architecture. I had my business well-covered by partner agents, so there was little to worry about. I started taking photos of “estate offices” in Great Britain — “The Guild of Professional Estate Agents” struck me as particularly nice. We strolled through Notting Hill and Kensington in London and picked out several apartments that would suit our family.
In France I started to pick up my favorite glossy real estate magazines. French real estate ads read like poetry and their romantic descriptions made me fall in love with several properties sight unseen. I took more photos of charming houses. I sought out offices and delighted in finding those with specializations like in the Champagne region, where one exclusively handled vineyards (and I imagined how glamorous that must be!). I watched the French version of “House Hunters,” which I loved because it portrays a more honest reality, where sometimes the buyers don’t actually find a house or apartment they like, and their agents pout and shrug and admit it would take a miracle to find them something in their budgets. The French buyers bring their friends along for approval and offers are scribbled on a piece of paper or made verbally and the notaries handle the rest of the transaction. Everyone drinks champagne. Continue reading »
By Derek Sandoval
Through FHA’s “Back To Work – Extenuating Circumstances Program,” borrowers who have gone through bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed-in-lieu, or short sale, may be eligible for an FHA-backed mortgage sooner if they can prove their financial hardship was the result of an economic event, such as job loss or a significant decrease in income. In this video, Noel Brownell of Comstock Mortgage and I will explain the new program further.
Derek Sandoval has worked for Keller Williams Realty in Roseville, Calif., since 2009, and specializes in residential, REO, and short sales. Find Derek at www.dereksellshomes.com and dereksellshomes.featuredblog.com.
By Anand Patel
A few weeks ago, Rob Reuter made the exciting announcement that the Young Professionals Network has grown to 300 networks (and counting). This is a commendable feat in the short 4+ years YPN has been around. As a part of Florida YPN, I’m very proud that 12 out of the 26 new networks established nationally to date in 2013 are from within the great state of Florida! Needless to say, the YPN “bug” has caught on and will continue to spread.
As YPN continues to grow around the country, it is also important to focus on quality as the networks multiply in quantity. The last thing we would want to see is networks fizzling out and failing after just a year or two post-launch. If you have ever been involved with Toastmasters International, you may know that not only do they place importance on mentoring new members who join a Toastmasters’ club, but also on mentoring new clubs as they become established. This way you help ensure member participation and club success as they start out their initial year.
As YPN members we can apply the same principles to the many new YPN networks being established around the country. Newly appointed YPN chairs are actively seeking guidance, tips and advice, and would be happy to hear from experienced networks. Here are some ways you could be a mentor and some advice you can share with new networks in your geographic area or across the country:
- Reach out to the YPN chair, association executive or staff liaison of the new network and offer to share your experiences. Calendar in some time, for example: Agree to spend 15-20 minutes every few weeks on the phone to speak with them. This doesn’t have to be a burden on you and take up too much of your valuable time. Fifteen minutes on the phone and perhaps corresponding via email can go a long way in helping a new network out.
- Share advice on how to select your inaugural YPN committee, selecting a vice-chair and how often to meet. We all know YPN is a great entry-point into association volunteerism but keep in mind that this may be the appointed chair’s first experience as part of a committee as well. Continue reading »
By Rob Mehta
Recently, I attended one of the most “unique” YPN events I have ever attended. Quite simply, it was the “World’s Largest Tuesday Morning Sales Meeting.”
Drawing a crowd in this industry is no easy feat, but when a group of Midwest minds with moxie got together, they were determined to attract more than just a couple people. Thus was the birth of the “Biggest Tuesday Sales Meeting EVER,” a free education event in June that drew a whopping 430 attendees. It was created by the Metro YPN (Young Professionals Network) of the Saint Paul Area Association of REALTORS®.
Success of this event, like so many others, relies heavily upon the shoulders of the chosen speaker. SPAAR’s Metro YPN invited Travis Robertson this year, and he continued his long streak of dynamic, informative presentations. Robertson spoke about the world’s top agents and their marketing techniques, citing specific examples. He had attendees laughing, hugging, and asking a plethora of questions.
SPAAR’s Metro YPN consists of Continue reading »
By Dave Robison
How many times have you heard it? You are your very own business owner in real estate. You are an independent contractor, you incur and write off expenses, you spend your own marketing dollars and you work your own hours. You own a business.
It definitely sounds like a business.
Years ago, I was convinced I had a business, but what I realized was my business was really a job — it was unprofitable and I couldn’t sell it. It was unprofitable because I was paying myself all the money it made. I couldn’t sell it because if someone bought it they would have to hope my friends and family would use them as a REALTOR®. Also, who was going to buy my business when what they’d really be buying is a job. Who wants to buy a job?
Why is it not a business? Because it was missing 3 things.
Here’s the difference between a job and a business: A job is when you have to do the work yourself to get paid. A business pays the employees market wages while giving owners a 10-15 percent profit off of gross revenues. A business allows the business owners to be able to go on vacation and not have to answer sales calls. A business should be able to be bought or sold. It would be nice to sell your company and retire, right? Or maybe you want to stay involved after retirement but pay someone else to run your business operations. How many agents do you know who truly have a business or can sell their business? I would say it is extremely rare in our market.
So, you want to own a business? Here are the three things that will transform your career/job into a saleable business.
1. In order to sell a business you have to pay yourself a market wage and make a profit. Continue reading »