The National Association of Realtors has described the Real Estate business as a "graying" one. As so many of today's Real Estate Agents are middle-aged and older, there is quite the opportunity for young professionals to break through in this business. Because Realtors have so many expenses (paying for their own health care, insurance, saving for retirement etc.), there is a great need for retiring agents to sell their business. This creates the incredible opportunity for young professionals to learn from the best, while in training to one day take over a multi-million dollar business.
"For those REALTORS® with 10 years of experience in real estate or less, having a bachelor’s degree increases their income by at least 18 percent compared with those with the same tenure in the business but without a degree." -NAR
Just one third of Realtors are reported to have a Bachelor's degree, while less than 1% have a doctoral degree. From my experience as a young Realtor with a Bachelor's degree, there are a few things I would recommend to someone starting in this business.
1. Get licensed
The first step in North Carolina to being a Realtor is to take a 75 hour Pre-Licensing class through one of the NC Real Estate Commission's approved classrooms. A lot of agents I know cut back their work hours in order to focus on the class. Similarly, I know of many (now successful) agents that took the test 2, 3 or more times before they passed. I was a full time student at UNC Wilmington with a part time job when I took this class at night. I wouldn't recommend such a large work load, but I was determined to pass the first time. I will say, the NC test is much harder than the SC, so be prepared to study.
I learned a lot from Keller William’s famous book, The Millionaire Real Estate Agent. It teaches you how to build a client base and grow your business, all while managing your expenses and learning how to leverage your time. I highly recommend reading it!
3. Get experience
I know, it's hard to get experience if no one will hire you until you have experience. However, this can be achieved in many ways. The first is to research the company you want to work for, learn who offers the best training, and talk to agents about their opinions. Personally, I found Keller Williams to have the best training anywhere (Ask me about working for Keller Williams).
Real estate is an exciting business that I never imaged I could be so passionate about. Ask me all of your questions about real estate!