Brokerage interviews are usually 30-minute sales pitches to show why that brokerage is the best thing since sliced bread.
Those interviews are typically, for a lack of a better description, meant to sell you on their brokerage and company. You make money for them, so they want you playing for their team. Because of this, many brokerages are overwhelmingly positive, which is not a bad thing (this industry has plenty of negativity already) but they often avoid mentioning anything that could be perceived as a negative about them. They won’t tell you the bad stuff because they’re afraid you’ll think the bad stuff only happens at their brokerage.
If every brokerage says you’ll make $100,000 in your first year, but one brokerage’s manager tells you that you’d be lucky to hit $40,000, most people would probably think twice about joining that team. No one wants their dreams crushed, but sometimes dream crushing is exactly what you need.
So, allow me to do the crushing.
It’s hard and you may fail
Anyone who tells you “real estate is easy money” most likely has never done it. It looks awesome. One thing almost all salespeople are good at is looking successful, whether they actually are or not. It’s even worst now with social media. Unfortunately, real estate is not as easy money as a lot of people make it out to be. It requires an immense amount of hard work, patience and persistence. Sales representatives spent a lot of time doing a lot of work for often no money. There’s a lot of running around, researching, networking, following up, showing and offer submitting, all with people who could be ready to submit an offer one day and completely ghost on you another.
This business can defeat you if you’re not ready for it or have the support system needed to keep you moving forward.
The success rate in real estate can be pretty low and it’s possible that you may fail but knowing that it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme and that hard work is required means you’re better prepared than a lot of other would-be Realtors starting up.
You get what you pay for
Every brokerage has a fee. Charging agents to be a part of their brokerage is how real estate companies make money, whether it’s a monthly desk fee, a commission split, an annual fee or a combination of all three.
Just like in your business, the more you are able to charge, the more services, value and time you can provide. It’s incredibly difficult (if not impossible) to provide quality real estate services to your clients if you’re charging discount rates, and the same goes for brokerages.
The differences are like a Timex and a Rolex. Nothing wrong with a Timex. In fact, if all you need is something to tell time reliably, the Timex is a great watch and for a very affordable price, but it’s not a Rolex. No one goes into a Rolex dealer expecting to pay Timex prices, but for some reason agents think they can pay the lowest possible price and get the best possible service from a brokerage. If you expect your clients to not think the same of you, you should really consider how you think of your brokerage.
Be wary of brokerages that promise the moon for what seems like too good to be true prices because often that’s exactly what they are. Too good to be true.
You may be poor for a while
When you become a real estate agent, what you’re really doing is starting a real estate business, and if you’ve ever spoken to any business owner you’d know that in the beginning money is tight.
There’s a lot of upfront costs (though not as much as starting other businesses) and you haven’t made a dime. You may not make a dime for a few months, which can make this business incredibly scary.
You probably already know this, but no brokerage wants to be the one to tell you that if you don’t. They also don’t want to remind you of it, but much like the rest of the items on this list, it’s much better to be prepared and ready to handle it than to start questioning your life choices as your fridge empties. Don’t fret, though, success will come with the right guidance. Just make sure you have it! If you focus on the right things, giving service and value, business will follow. I’m a big believer in this. You just have to have a strong stomach for the valleys.
After you’ve completed every course and signed up for your brokerage, you may sit in your chair thinking, “Okay, now what?” That’s normal. Almost every agent has this moment at the beginning of their careers. No one mentions it, because every manager’s focus is trying to keep you from feeling this way. We establish training sessions, programs and schedules to help you avoid that feeling. But typically, it’s unavoidable. Don’t focus on it. It will pass.
Ultimately real estate is a tough industry and you may question your choices but, if you stick to it and focus, getting into this business can be the best thing you’ve done.