12 Common Questions About Becoming a Real Estate Agent

Aug 21, 2023
5 min.

Between 2020 and 2021, "how to become a real estate agent" was the most researched job-related term. This statistic proves that being a real estate agent is one of the most lucrative jobs today, whether as a full-time career or a side hustle. 

The average annual income of a real estate agent is $48,340. In addition to the money, agents enjoy other perks like independence and the satisfaction of helping different individuals acquire their ideal property. 

This article reviews the most common questions aspiring real estate agents ask.

Should I Interview Brokerages Before Getting my Real Estate License?

Yes, as a potential real estate agent, you can interview brokerages before getting your real estate license. Interviewing before you get your license helps you decide which brokerage you want to join. Not only that, but you could coordinate with the DRE to automatically sign with a brokerage when you pass the state exam.

How Long Do I Have to Stay at a Brokerage?

There is no fixed time frame restricting your time at a brokerage. Instead, the time spent after signing an independent contract with a brokerage is dependent on several factors, including the terms of the contract signed and personal factors such as how fulfilled and comfortable you feel at the brokerage.

Is the Commission Split with Brokerages Negotiable?

Yes, the commission split between you and the brokerage you sign up with is negotiable. However, if you are uncomfortable with the split portion, both parties can negotiate until a compromise is found. 

Is it Necessary for New Real Estate Agents to Join Teams?

No, joining a real estate team as a new real estate agent is not necessary. Although joining teams may come with benefits, such as establishing a familiar ground and creating exposure in the real estate industry. However, if you feel you have what it takes to go solo and meet your clients, go for it! 

If I do an Open House for Another Agent's Listing, Do I Keep the Leads?

You can keep the leads you get from hosting another agent's open house. One of the best ways to stay busy as a new agent is by offering to do an open house for a thriving listing agent in your brokerage. Any potential future clients you get in the process are a bonus and yours to keep.

Am I Tied to the Brokerage's Preferred Service Providers?

The answer to this is no. You are not obliged to use your brokerage's preferred service providers. Instead, as an autonomous contractor, you are allowed to determine what works for you and your business, including the choice of who provides your services, such as escrow officers, mortgage lenders, etc.

Is it Required to go to Your Office Every Day?

No, you are not required to go to your office every day. The best place for a real estate agent is outside their office to find more opportunities to meet potential new clients.

However, it is crucial to keep your ears to the ground to know when special events such as masterclass training are being held. Brokerages offer events, classes, and training to help agents improve. So, you don't want to miss out!

Do I Need a Mentor?

As an aspiring real estate agent, a mentor is not required. But, if you can afford the commission split, you may want to find one. Mentors help shorten the learning curve and guide you through problems you might not know how to fix. 

Generally, having a mentor will cost you 20% of every commission check. But, this can vary depending on the contract.

Can I Represent Myself in the Purchase or Sale of a Home?

Yes, you can represent yourself in purchasing or selling your property once you have passed the real estate state exam and received your license.

Do I Need to Print My Real Estate License?

No, printing your license is not required. Typically, the Department of Real Estate sends you two copies of your license: 

  1. A portable card with your real estate number 
  2. A larger copy via email

The most important thing is to save these documents for reference purposes.

I Have a Criminal Background. Can I Get a Real Estate License?

Yes, you can obtain a real estate license, even with a criminal record. The first step is to contact the Department of Real Estate to inform them.

When explaining your criminal history, be honest and specific. If the DRE finds the information you hide, you will look suspicious and untrustworthy.

Criminality is a significant factor in deciding a person's eligibility because trust is a cornerstone of a real estate agent's fiducial duty.

How Do I Stay Motivated While Studying for the State Exam?

Staying motivated throughout the process of getting a real estate license is a vital key to passing the exam. To stay motivated, you must remember your reason for embarking on the journey. Your "why" can be financial freedom, independence, or providing for people you care about.

Also, experts recommend studying small volumes. Studying small volumes makes the material less daunting and helps you learn faster. 

Final Thoughts on these Common Questions

Becoming a real estate agent is an important decision and should be treated as one. Research and ask all the necessary questions before beginning the process of obtaining your license.

Furthermore, consider this an upfront investment and prepare to make several expenses such as pre-licensing education fees, real estate exam fees, application fees, etc.

TL;DR: Learning as much as you can BEFORE you become a real estate agent will help you acclimate to the career. Seek out people who are already in the field to see if it is right for you.

Aug 21, 2023
5 min.