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10 Reasons You May Want to Consider a Career in Real Estate in 2009
by James Hiles
Russell Real Estate Services
More and more women and men are seriously considering a career in real estate.
1. The time is now to start a real estate career.You say why would now be a good time to get into the real estate business? Because real estate is just like anything else, it is cyclical. When things change or get difficult, agents tend to drop out. When things are going well and business is booming, new agents start getting in the business. Think about it, the time to get in is just before things start getting better and there is less competition, just like purchasing stocks, the time to buy is when prices are low and investors are selling trying to get out. Believe it or not, many areas have actually increased in closed transactions compared to previous years, sure a lot of property values have dropped, but homes are still selling.
There is still a need for agents to handle these transactions. Yes, the market moved from a seller's market to a buyer's market, those able to buy are still picking up really good deals. Interest rates are at all time lows and the market is saturated with properties for sale. There may be many foreclosures, short sales and traditional sales. Who knows you may even find a good buy yourself. Get In now while the opportunity is knocking.
2. It's easy to get licensed.With more and more companies going out of business, more and more men and women are looking for a new career. Many are seriously looking at a real estate career because it is easy to get started. There are many community colleges and schools offering the courses to get into real estate. Many offer fast track programs that can help you complete the state required courses and sitting for the state exam within 40-60 days like http://HondrosCollege.com
The courses can be very affordable. These courses can be spread out over time, so it doesn't have to be paid for in one big sum. Many schools will even accept a credit card, so you can pay off your education over time. Many states only require about four classes to qualify for the state exam. Since requirements differ state to state, I recommend you check with your state and find out what the requirements are and check into a local school to find out what you may need to do to get started, you may be surprised how easy it can be.
3. You can start earning money right away..If you take the required classes and pass the required state exam, you may be officially licensed by the state. Many states require that you work for a real estate broker already licensed by the state, and many of these brokers are looking for new sales associates. Many brokers will require you take their company training and offer mentoring. You can very easily get your first check within 30-45 days.
Don't get me wrong, this is not all the training you will need to be successful, but you can earn while you learn. Many agents start out on a part-time basis eventually planning on going full-time. If you know a lot of people and are well organized, your chances of earning money quickly will increase dramatically. Don't just show up after you get licensed, if you have made the decision to get licensed, start planning now and get the word out to your database of contacts to let them know as soon as you are licensed you can help them with their real estate needs, that way you will hit the ground running instead of getting things rolling later.
Some brokers will actually allow you to refer your leads to current agents, so that way you can have commission checks waiting for you when you officially become licensed. (Keeping in mind, many state laws prohibit a broker paying an unlicensed individual for real estate transactions, so you do need to get licensed to get paid)
4. You have no income limits.Since real estate is primarily a commissioned based business you have an unlimited earning potential. The more successful you are the more money you can earn. Top agents get top dollar, they get paid more often and also earn higher commission splits. How many times have you heard someone complain about not getting paid for all their efforts? Maybe you have experienced this personally. In real estate if you want a raise, all you need to do is sell another house and/or improve your skills. You will always get paid what you are worth.
The business may not necessarily be easy, but it is simple, most of your tasks are repeated transaction to transaction or client to client. Once you have the systems down, you can stay organized and do more. Your income is directly tied to what you sell, the more people you meet the more money you can earn.
5. You can be your own boss.Tired of working for someone else? In real estate you can run your own business. In most states, real estate agents are self employed; they are independent contractors and run their own business. If you work for a broker, you may need to follow company policies and state laws, but the broker usually does not control your day to day activities. Agents schedule their own hours and enjoy the freedom to work how they want to work.
Be careful, this can be a "double-edged sword" and does not mean you do not have to work. Many people have a hard time being their own boss. You need to have a strong work ethic and be well organized and some days it takes more of a sacrifice to work around other people's schedules. You need to be available when your clients are available. It's not about the hours; it's more about what you do in those hours. Being an agent does not tie you to a desk or an office; you can come and go as you wish. Agents can even do more of the things they enjoy. If you enjoy interests that involve opportunities that allow you to meet people, you are on your way to creating a strong business base.
6. You can work from home.With the Internet and the technology available today, you can successfully do most of your work from home. Most of the real estate programs and systems are available online. Many agents today have a home office and are able to take advantage of the flexibility and tax advantages. From a business stand point, it is safer and more professional to meet your clients in an office environment. If you have responsibilities that keep you at home, real estate may work for you, because you may be able to find help easier on a limited per appointment schedule.
7. There are no layoffs in real estate.Even with today's ever changing market conditions businesses closing and/ or laying off employees, have you heard of or seen any newspaper headlines talking about a major layoff of real estate agents? The resounding answer is NO. Why? As mentioned earlier, agents are primarily independent contractors, they are self employed. The only person able to layoff an independent contractor is the independent contractor themselves.
Once you are licensed by the state as a real estate agent you can realistically work for any licensed broker in that state. If your broker closes his or her doors, you can literally just transfer your license to the broker down the street and continue doing business; many brokers would welcome this opportunity, especially if you are an agent that has a good track record.
8. Low operating expenses/overhead.Are you looking for a business that allows you to keep your expenses to a minimum? Real estate may be the career you have been looking for. There are real estate brokers doing business today that provide you with practically everything you need to succeed, from computer programs, websites, signs, training, advertising, business cards and even leads, a few will even pay for your licensing classes through a tuition reimbursement program. The yearly fees to keep your real estate license active can fall between $500 and $1500, not bad for a business. Of course, you can always spend more, depending on your business plan, location and area of business.
9. There is a lot of free training available.Many real estate brokers provide free training; they will make sure you have a good understanding of the law and the business before they send you out on your own to represent clients. You won't need to go to a real estate academy to learn the business. I will say this, there are thousands of real estate courses, continuing education courses and designation courses that will help you learn about the business. Some classes will help you specialize in a certain area of real estate. There are programs that will motivate you and help you increase your sales skills.
Many of these courses are provided by brokers for a minimal fee or offered for free. Some courses are offered by real estate affiliates, Boards of REALTORS and Multiple Listing Services. They range from basic computer classes to properly staging a seller's home for sale. Free training-how can you beat that??
10. It's a not a job, it's a career.There are many differences between a career and a job. One of the major differences is that a job has lots of limitations. There can be limitations of income, meaning your boss cannot pay you more for the task that you were hired to do even if you improve at your task. There can be a limit of hours, meaning if you want to work more than 40 hours a week you can't or if you want to work less then 40 hours you can't. There can also be limits of availability, you may be stuck in a "dead end" position where you cannot move up the ladder any further than where you are. There are very often limits to how long you can do what you are doing, until you eventually are forced to retire.
A career is usually just the opposite, you can work in a real estate career until you die, you can cut back hours or work more hours, you can earn more or less money, you can ultimately work until you are able to start your own brokerage or maybe even advance higher by managing a huge real estate corporation. The opportunities are endless. If you improve your skills and make yourself a more valuable asset, you can always earn even more, either by doing more of it or doing it better. You can build on your real estate career and take it in many directions or levels, because it's yours and yours alone.
If your future employment is looking a little questionable, don't just wait for it to happen plan ahead you may consider opening the door to a very rewarding career in real estate. Many of the top agents in the business today, never really thought being licensed real estate agent was an option, but now they are glad they did.
Article submitted Monday, May 18, 2009 & read 198 times.
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