Updated: Nov 30, 2019
If you ask anyone in the industry to describe a typical day of a real estate agent, they’ll tell you there is none. New challenges arise all the time, which means agents must be able to adapt and adjust in a timely manner, only to be greeted with a new set the next day.
THE NATURE OF A JOB OF A REAL ESTATE AGENT
Yes, we all know that by definition, real estate agents help people buy, rent, or sell a property such as a house, a condo or a commercial building. In this income-generating activity, agents make a commission that is a percentage of the property’s price on each successful transaction. But there is so much more that an agent does on a regular basis to stay competitive on the market.
Since agents don’t have a traditional 9 to 5 job, there is some flexibility in their schedule, which is one of the things that attracts a lot of people to this profession from the start. In the morning, agents may go to their office to make phone calls, reply to emails and do some administrative and marketing tasks, while evenings and weekends may be reserved for meeting clients.
In a nutshell, long hours describe the nature of an agent’s job quite accurately. That’s especially true in busier, warmer seasons when the properties tend to present better. Think attractive exteriors on the backdrop of spring months when everything around is growing and blooming. This explains why, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), property listings are highest in May. It should come as no surprise then that the slower real estate season is during the winter, especially in December when listings are at the lowest compared to other months.
So, if you are thinking of becoming a real estate agent, remember that the real estate industry is cyclical in nature. In your job, you’ll experience both the highs and the lows. Experts also suggest that the fall is when the market presents a second wave of home buying activity after people have enjoyed their summer and are settling back into the regular routine. This further confirms that seasonality will be a key factor in your job as an agent.
Among other factors responsible for what you’ll do as an agent, is whether you work solo or join a team.
WORKING SOLO VS JOINING A REAL ESTATE TEAM
For an agent who has recently got their license, determining what model fits their needs best will often dictate the day-to-day responsibilities. As an independent agent, you will be responsible for generating your own leads, setting up your meetings, filling out and proofreading offers and promotional and advertising initiatives.
Among other duties, yours will include setting up open houses, providing email and phone support to your customers, identifying training and coaching opportunities to continue growing and managing your coverage when availability is stretched.
Working with a real estate team – you leverage collective time, knowledge and expertise of each team member while acquiring a consistent flow of leads through a lead generation system, which essentially means you arrive every day to a set of new leads.
A huge advantage of working in a team is the incredible support and network of expertise at your disposal as a real estate agent. For instance, each member at OnlyWith.ca brings a unique set of skills to the table – making knowledge and expertise sharing effortless, natural and diverse. The team provides a range of training and learning opportunities, administrative and marketing support – all of which often come at a cost when you are on your own, not to mention, require a time commitment, which as an independent agent you simply do not have.
While every market is different, and each day brings its own level of complexity and job nuances, there are some commonalities when it comes to typical job responsibilities that a real estate agent tends to perform. From meeting with clients to generating leads, and filling out paperwork to staying up to speed on market trends to posting on their social media channels – a real estate agent’s job is essentially like running a business, where an agent wears many different hats.
Customers are the lifeline of any real estate agent. Without clients, real estate agents wouldn’t make any commission and would be out of business. Which is why agents spend a big chunk of their time on lead generating initiatives. This means not only making calls, sending emails, and giving out business cards, but also leveraging their personal sphere of influence.
A real estate sphere of influence strategy is often one of the best ways to cultivate new leads, which means that leads are generated through a circle of people that the agent already knows (i.e. family, friends, neighbors, colleagues and other people you may be in touch with).
In a way, real estate agents are constantly selling themselves to prospective clients. They do so by establishing and growing a strong personal brand. To attract potential buyers and sellers, they often work on effective advertising and promotional materials in order to raise awareness for new listings, post on social media to increase engagement among their following, and publish blog posts to establish credibility in the industry.
Even a few years ago, as far back as 2013, over 60% of real estate agents spent at least an hour a day on advertising and marketing. While the most up-to-date stats are difficult to come by, the time spent is easily doubled in today’s digitally-driven age.
If you are an independent real estate agent, consider joining a team of agents like OnlyWith.ca, not only to be a part of a lead generating system, but to leverage the mentorship and training opportunities that’ll teach you the most effective strategies to grow your business.
WORKING WITH BUYERS AND SELLERS
A good agent adapts to the needs of different clients. And as experience will show, every client is in fact different. For customers looking to purchase a piece of land, an agent will be involved in various activities from meeting with the buyer, performing research, setting up appointments, negotiating with the listing agent and drafting up paperwork. And as a listing agent, you may be required to stage properties, develop marketing and promotional materials, organize open houses and negotiate offers. When required, agents may also attend appraisals and inspections to support buyers and sellers as part of the purchase and selling transaction.
ADMINISTRATIVE DUTIES OF AN AGENT
This one you can’t avoid. There is a lot of paperwork involved with buying and selling a property. This ranges from data entry, scheduling appointments, submitting real estate documents, and everything in between. On average, about 40 to 50 hours of work goes into each real estate transaction.
To an extent, agents are like a small business owner who has to balance a busy schedule at any given time. For an agent to be successful, he or she has to make time for administrative tasks that keep the business running. Many hire support staff to manage these responsibilities, which frees the agent to focus on other aspects of their job.
Teams like OnlyWith.ca teach real estate agents how to handle each aspect of the
paperwork, avoid costly errors, efficiently manage their time and utilize
Getting a real estate license will only get you a foot in the door when it comes to real estate industry. The learning continues well into the job.
The truth is, any new agent requires additional experience and training, specifically in the areas of contracts, the art of negotiation and persuasion, understanding proper procedures, follow-up practices, and other industry nuances.
Jay Frenkel, Agent Relations Manager of Only With.ca team recalls that education was one of the biggest reasons why he chose his first brokerage firm. Jay notes, "Working with a great brokerage will teach you everything from lead generation to building your sphere of influence, to sales and marketing. This will help you make valuable networking connections and continue to teach you with weekly meetings, monthly events, and ongoing training.”
But this holds truth for seasoned agents as well. Any agent, regardless of how many years they’ve been on the job, must stay up to date with the market as well as with real estate regulations. Things change and evolve, which means not keeping new trends on your radar might negatively affect your job.
Bottom line, agents are business operators that wear many different hats and play a myriad of roles on any given day. The life of a real estate agent is unique in that no day will be exactly the same as any other, no client interaction will be identical, and no challenge will be as easily solved as the last one.
If the life of a real estate agent appeals to you, join our team today.