5 Key Skills Every Realtor Needs To Succeed
As the housing boom of 2020 continues into 2021, a shortage of available homes on the market has spurred a feeding frenzy with home prices skyrocketing to their highest levels in decades. One might think that this is the perfect time to be a real estate agent but think again, as a dearth of inventory and an oversupply of real estate agents means that this is one of the most competitive eras in the industry’s history. Here are 5 skills successful real estate agents need to stand out in 2021 and beyond.
Mastery of E-Mail Marketing
The personal computer has been stable in the average American household since the 1990s. Phones keep us connected to our inboxes constantly. The age of being justifiably incommunicado is long past, as we can be contacted at any time. Now is the time to use that to your advantage! E-mail marketing software with built-in automation has never been more affordable. Maintaining a slow and steady, but continuous e-mail marketing campaign will allow you to remain present within the short and long-term memory of your would-be clients, making you the first person they’ll think of when the time comes to buy, sell, or make what will hopefully be a lucrative referral.
Show-Up as The Professional
We understand that some of you make work day in and day out in 90% humidity. While some of the most competitive markets can be found in Florida and the Southwest, who could blame you for wanting to ditch the suit and tie for shorts and a breathable top. Pro-Tip: don’t. Keep the suit, press your shirts and shine your shoes. Your first impression will set the tone for all your client interactions. Unless you can dazzle them with savant-level recall in a bowling shirt and fedora, stick to the slick look and your life will be much easier. This brings us to our next topic…
Never Stop Learning
Know your contracts, memorize every kind of loan, mark every local and state law, and keep you and your clients far away from any potential exposure to civil action. Licensed Real Estate Salesperson is a fine title, but go for the gold and pursue membership in the National Association of Realtors. Take continuing education courses. Walk the neighborhoods that you’re selling every 6 months so that you can speak to the local amenities off the cuff. Embracing the notion of being a “student for life” will keep you at the front of the pack.
You’ve worked with a newlywed couple for the past six months and they’ve finally closed on their starter home. They’re unpacking, it’s stressful and they’re still getting used to the area. Don’t be a stranger! Even after you’ve collected your commission, stay in touch with your former clients. Send a note, a small gift, or at the very least (effort, that is), send them an annual holiday card. If you really want to be a superstar, bring a six-pack of beer at the end of their move-in day (assuming they drink) to take the edge off after a hard day’s work. Small gestures such as these will burn you into their memory and earn you happy repeat clients and referrals.
We’ve already discussed continuing your real estate education and you certainly need to know your codes, zones, bylaws, etc. And we are not knocking the “Jack of All Trades” approach that many agents take. However, finding your niche will make you a go-to authority for clients. Do you thrive on building long-term relationships and creating value, then property management may be for you. Are you undaunted by commitments and are excited by research and development, then commercial real estate may be ideal (and this field tends to require a four-year degree and has even larger earning potential than residential)? Once you have found your niche, take as much time as you need to consider what piques your interest, keeps you motivated, what your geographic region has to offer, and where there is a blind spot in the market that no one is catering to. Florida will have ample opportunities for those wishing to cultivate a luxury property specialty, while green real estate specialties may find a welcome home in innovation-conscious cities like New Orleans, Los Angeles, or Seattle.
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