What Does an Ideal Work Week Look Like for a New Real Estate Agent?

By Tara L. Christianson on Oct 3, 2018 3:29:52 PM

Once all the pre-licensing courses, choosing of brokerages, and new agent training is over, it’s a whole new, wide world for new real estate agents. To help you figure out a plan that can answer your question of, “What next?” we asked our two directors of new agent growth, Trish Szego and Sandy Rosengarden, to share their thoughts on what the ideal work week for brand-new real estate agents should look like.

Two challenges new agents face when they’re first starting on their own in their real estate business are: not understanding how to run their own business, and falling into a rut if there’s no current client to work with.

Most new agents come from another career, with set hours and duties, and they find it difficult not to have someone standing over them telling them exactly what to do. Trish reminds you, “You are now in business for yourself and, while you have the opportunity to make as much money as you’d like, you need to put forth the effort and do tasks that are necessary.”

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The Question You're Probably Not Asking of Your Next Potential Brokerage

By Tara L. Christianson on Oct 1, 2018 1:22:32 PM

When it comes to choosing your next potential brokerage, many people focus on monetary offerings – commission splits, bonuses, and more – or on other enticements that might make them choose a brokerage as their next brokerage. There’s one question, though, that many agents don’t ask, and that’s about your potential next brokerage’s agent retention rate.

Why is that important?

There are many reasons real estate agents may think it’s time to make a change in their brokerage, including lack of support, high or incomprehensible fee structures, insufficient education, a lag in keeping up with innovation, and isolation from their wider community. But it’s harder to pin down why real estate agents choose to stay with their brokerages.

One reason many agents stay with their brokerage is that they’ve found a brokerage who isn’t afraid to work on expanding their agents’ brand instead of their own. For example, many long-term agents at CENTURY 21 Redwood Realty admire our focus on enhancing our agents’ brands and letting them fly.

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Ways to Make Every Month REALTOR® Safety Month

By Tara L. Christianson on Sep 26, 2018 11:55:41 AM

September is traditionally known as REALTOR® Safety Month. In recognition of that, we recently invited Leverage Fitness and Defense to our Reston office to help our real estate agents practice some self-defense moves that we hope they never have to try in real life.

Really, though, every month should be REALTOR® Safety Month. To that end, we’d like to draw attention to some of the tips recently mentioned in this year's REALTOR® Safety Presentation Handouts:

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Questions New Agents Should Ask Before Choosing Their New Brokerage - Part 2

By Tara L. Christianson on Sep 24, 2018 10:22:27 AM

Last week, we brought you "Questions New Agents Should Ask Before Choosing Their New Brokerage - Part 1." In that, we spoke with Sandy Rosengarden, our Director of New Agent Growth for DC and Maryland. We asked her what she thought new agents should consider and what questions they should be asking when interviewing new brokerages. This week, we present part two of our conversation.

Availability of Training

“Once you have a good understanding of the tools and resources that are available to you," Sandy says,  "you may want to turn your attention to what the brokerage does to help keep you on track, train you, develop your skills, grow your business, and make it easier to use all the tools and resources that the brokerage provides."

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Questions New Agents Should Ask Before Choosing Their New Brokerage - Part 1

By Tara L. Christianson on Sep 21, 2018 9:53:00 AM

Even before they've officially earned their real estate license, many new real estate agents start their hunt for the brokerage where they’ll hang their license. Any number of factors can affect that decision – from ending up at a friend’s brokerage to going to someone with the ‘best’ commission split.

We talked to Sandy Rosengarden, our Director of New Agent Growth for DC and Maryland. Sandy has direct contact with new agents on a daily basis, and we asked her what she thought new agents should consider and what questions they should be asking when interviewing new brokerages. (And yes, she recommends talking to more than one before making your decision.)

Here's part one of a two-part series giving her best advice to new agents on what questions they should ask to find the best brokerage for them.

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How to Get Your Real Estate Groove Back This Fall

By Tara L. Christianson on Sep 17, 2018 9:13:53 AM

Late August and early September isn’t just a hard time for kids - many real estate agents experience their own ‘back-to-school’ slump in their businesses. Not only do many have additional family obligations to deal with; a common perception among agents is that people who were interested or motivated to move probably did so already in summer (or will wait until next year). Less sunlight, more temperamental weather, and a spate of bills doesn’t help the overall mood.

What to do? How do you break out of this slump, so you still finish 2018 strong? A few thoughts from our CENTURY 21 Redwood agents may help provide the catalyst you need to jumpstart this transition into fall.

Plan Events for the Next Few Months

One way to stay motivated is to have things to look forward to, especially if those events involve other people. You can plan client appreciation events for the upcoming months, while starting to get ready for fall pop-by calls and visits, like Ruthan O’Toole (a C21 Redwood agent from our Locust Grove office) does. Not only is Ruthan looking forward to her office’s September client appreciation event, and says their Labor Day event, with taco trucks, was very popular! She notes that autumn is a great time to touch base again with clients: “This is the perfect time to be handing out football schedules, calendars, fliers with area fall festival events posted and, of course, pop-by fall-themed gifts.”

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In a 'Go Go Go' World, Are You Making Time for You?

By Billy Ekofo on Sep 12, 2018 10:49:21 AM

Between my junior year in high school and my senior year in college, I spent all of my summers working at as camp counselor right outside of Williamsburg, Virginia. I loved that opportunity because it gave me the chance to reconnect with friends who had served in the past with me, but also the chance to connect with new staff members. Ultimately, the real excitement was looking forward to welcoming new and returning campers to their favorite camp for the summer and introducing them to new programs, adventures, and a slew of silliness.

I always started my journey at the camp with incredible energy. I barely took any breaks, even though we were encouraged to do so. The excitement of the camp fueled me, so I never once thought that I needed time to recharge myself. My last year as a counselor was in 2004, and by then, I was no longer the Energizer bunny that I was six years previously. I knew in my heart that I squandered any future opportunities to be of service to other staff members, and ultimately the children because I was always on the go, and never took time to replenish my soul and body.

One of the most significant benefits of our work as Realtors® is that we continuously pour our very best into everything we do - and clients get a front row seat to our constant flow. The rush of submitting an offer, breezing through all the contingencies, and finally sitting at the closing table keeps us wanting more: more interactions with potential clients, more opportunities to help other people in our sphere, and the opportunity to once again showcase our ability to help anyone with one of the most significant financial decisions they’ll ever make.

Topics: agent advice
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It's Time to Shake it Up and Stop Accepting the Ordinary

By Billy Ekofo on Sep 6, 2018 9:32:00 AM

Labor Day came and went. The kids are back in school, and summer is coming to an end. In the real estate world, this means a couple of things: The people who wanted to move to a different location are finally settling into their new house and routine. The people who thought about moving to a new home, but haven’t yet made the move, will most likely stay put for at least a few more months. There is still some market activity, but the general spring market frenzy is coming to an end.

Pretty soon, fall will be here, and with it will come another wave of real estate opportunities for buyers, sellers, and renters. Those prospective customers will most likely look for a ready, able, and well-suited agent to assist them with their needs. That agent will probably be either a recommendation from a close friend or relative, or an agent that they found online.

The criteria for choosing said agent will be based on either service reviews, the strength of the recommendation, or the way that agent carries himself or herself either in person or online. Some will choose you. Others will not. You’ll service the ones who decided that your help is something they cannot live without. You’ll close on a transaction and ask them for a referral. They will either share one or several with you or not. You’ll still feel proud of your services to them, and that service will earn you a commission. You’ll celebrate. You will thank your clients for their trust in you, and you'll look into your pipeline with great anticipation and expectation for your next source of business.

Topics: agent advice
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How to Be a Facebook Hero by Using Friends Lists for Your Business

By Tara L. Christianson on Aug 31, 2018 3:34:41 PM

In a time when the lines are becoming more and more blurred on Facebook between business and life, Facebook Friend Lists might be what you need to help you rethink the way you use Facebook for your real estate business.

Here’s a typical scenario: You work with a fantastic seller. You did a great job of selling their home. You want to stay in touch. They want to keep in touch. You put them in your CRM. They friend you on Facebook.

What do you do next?

For some real estate agents, this is a bit of a dilemma. Maybe you post a lot of photos of your kids for your out-of-state family members to see, and you don’t want your new seller friend to see all of them. Maybe you like traveling, and there are pics of your latest adventures, waving a margarita like it’s a flag and sporting your new sparkly bikini. Again, maybe something your new friend doesn’t need to see first thing in the morning. Or, on the flip side, perhaps your friends and family have accused you of being too ‘real estate-y’ on Facebook, and you want to spare them from future “Just Listed” and “Another happy client” posts.

Enter Facebook Friend Lists.

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How Are Your Delivering on Your Brand's Promise?

By Billy Ekofo on Aug 29, 2018 2:30:44 PM

I have been having many conversations regarding brand and service lately, but more so around branding. In particular, how your brand’s value proposition needs to be in perfect alignment with the services you offer.

Often, agents think of their brand as merely a collection of trendy colors, logos, images, and regularly scheduled social posts, but it is, in fact, a whole lot more. A brand is a unique identifier for your business, and encapsulated in that brand is a single value proposition to your current and potential customers.

Your brand is of great importance for many reasons. In addition to the monetary value you bring to the table, this is something to which recruiters and brokerages looking to acquire companies pay close attention. Your brand is such a differentiator that, when built correctly, a business will consider whether or not acquiring you will enhance its brand to the point that a consumer would be willing to pay extra for doing business with them over another company. This is what is often referred to as brand equity - an intangible measurement of a brand’s power that can either enhance a company’s standing in the marketplace or cripple it completely.

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