Real Estate Agent and Trainer, Robert Rico, discusses what a Real Estate Agent actually does at work, whether it be working with buyers, working with sellers, or going out and getting clients in general. Do you want to see more video blogs? Subscribe here!
It’s a very natural question in such a free-form industry – what does the typical day of a real estate agent actually look like? Well, in fact, there really isn’t a typical day in the life of a real estate agent – but we have compiled some of the common tasks and laid out some of the differences between working with buyers versus working with sellers.
When working with either buyers or sellers, it’s very important to figure out their motivation for buying or selling. Does the buyer want their children in a new school district by fall? Does the seller want to relocate, downsize, or buy a bigger home for their growing family? Identifying these motivations are key for matching the right buyers with the right homes, and the right sellers with the right offers. Part of any successful client meeting is really pinpointing the motivation for the purchase or sale.
For sellers, after the initial meeting, your next big move should be a listing presentation – with comparable sales, a neighborhood analysis, and a suggested list price that is realistic to sell the home within the desired time frame. They should then sign the RLA – Residential Listing Agreement – which is the contract that binds the seller to you. As soon as you get the RLA, the property should go in the MLS so it’s visible to all other realtors and interested parties!. After that, there’s a list of tasks you may be doing, which all enhance your ability to sell the property quickly. This list includes:
- Taking property photos
- Creating and printing brochures and marketing materials (Zillow, etc)
- Hosting open houses
- Attending inspections and appraisals
- Communicating with title & escrow companies
Once you get an offer, the house will go “into escrow” during which period you should be in contact with your buyers and/or sellers daily! After (hopefully) a smooth escrow period, you’ll be completing tons of paperwork and answering hundreds of questions about the contracts signed by buyer and seller. These questions are essential to answer to reassure the sellers that they are getting the highest price possible and selling to people that they like. The buyers are also understandably nervous, since they are making a very large purchase and are trusting that you have honestly represented the house and the sellers.
When working with buyers, after determining their motivation, it’s crucial to make sure they have visited a lender for a pre-approval letter so that you can accurately set a price ceiling or price range. This ensures that you know which houses to show them from the MLS. It’s also important to set expectations realistically – if their price range is completely at odds with what they want in a house, they will end up disappointed clients, so it’s important to realistically set expectations up front.
Once they are pre-approved, the showings are the most exciting part for the buyers – seeing all the different homes, imagining themselves living there, seeing what’s on the market, and more. Be sure to keep your enthusiasm up when you’re showing house after house – though it can feel like all the houses blend together in your mind, the buyers are often very excited, so it’s important to match their excitement level. When working with buyers, you will likely:
- Show them lots of houses
- Show them some of those houses a second or third time
- Discuss price ranges, getting a higher loan, or stretching their budget
- Discuss the relative upsides and downsides of all the homes you’ve seen
- Drive neighborhoods more than once
The important thing to remember is to keep them happy and get them to put in an offer on a home, which will then put you in escrow as discussed before. This escrow means you represent the buyer, and as such, are involved with the mortgage company, escrow company, title insurance, and homeowner’s insurance to ensure that everything is covered and paid for.
If you’re not actively involved in a listing or purchase (and sometimes, even if you are) it’s always important to be prospecting for new leads. One of our key tips to prospecting – and for all of real estate – is to stay MAD – Motivated, Active, and Disciplined. Work the door knocking, work the cold calling, and work your sphere of influence. Get MAD!!!