How Long Does It Take to Become Successful in Real Estate?

Whether you are an independent real estate agent or working for a larger firm, the road to success may take a little bit of time. But exactly how long does it take to become successful in real estate?

It can take anywhere from six months to several years of continuous hard work to build a successful business. How long it takes a real estate business to become successful will depend on the agent’s experience and efforts. Besides experience and effort, there are a few other factors that may affect success in real estate such as charisma, area, and business planning.

Real estate is not an easy industry to begin working in; however, hard work and determination (and a few other tips and tricks) can help you become very successful. Continue reading to learn not only how long it will take to start bringing in benefits, but some tips and tricks to help you get there faster too! 

Timeline for Success in Real Estate

After obtaining your real estate license, you most likely believe that you are ready to start selling houses left and right.

However, becoming a successful real estate agent will take a little bit more than just a real estate license and a couple of fancy business cards (although both definitely help). Even if you have been working in real estate for a couple of years, you may still be seen as a “rookie.”

It is during the first few years of the birth of your real estate business that you learn the marketing strategies and home selling tactics that will help you and your business prosper. Once these first few years have passed, you are not yet past the learning stage.

The Learning Stage (0-6 Months)

During this learning stage, you should be careful not to put too much pressure on yourself to suddenly become wildly successful. The chances are pressure may cause added stress that could potentially hurt your business.

While yes, you can make a pretty penny in profits during the first few years of your business’ operation this phase is simply a stepping stone to becoming truly successful in real estate. The real success will come after a few years of work.

If you have just jumped into real estate, you need to understand that you are now basically a business owner. With a normal job, one is able to clock in and clock out at the end of the day. However, being a real estate agent is like running your own business. It requires lots of attention throughout the day. Typically you will be your own boss, and you will need to focus on what a business needs to survive.

So what does your business need in order to keep operating effectively? 

Planning and Goal Setting Stage (6 Months to 3 Years)

Every good business should start off with a well defined and thought out plan. This business plan should include a goal, a time frame, and the means by which you will accomplish the goal in the allotted time. 

As I mentioned above, making a hefty profit should not be your main goal at this time. For most small, start-up businesses a noteworthy profit is not typically made until after the first or second year in operation.

So think logistically and realistically when plotting out your real estate business’ time frame.

During the start of your business, be careful not to incur any unnecessary costs. If you are not a broker yet and your broker permits you, run your real estate from home rather than paying rent for an office space. Saving money should be your goal here.

After you have completed the first phase of opening your own real estate business you can start to focus on increasing the success and profits of your firm.

Success and Profits (3 Years and Beyond)

If you have begun to experience losses, you cannot solely blame a lack of sales. On the contrary, just as you did in the beginning, you will need to be watching for unnecessary costs continually. As these costs arise, be sure to find a quick solution to them to keep your business’ total revenue larger than its total costs.

Say you are paying for a large advertisement on a local billboard. Did the billboard bring in extra revenue? Is the advertisement covering its own costs? Or maybe you are running Facebook Ads and have shown little to no return? You must ask yourself these questions as much as possible.

When possible, you should weigh the opportunity costs of each action and see if they are bigger or smaller than the total benefit gained. If the costs are higher, cut them!

As much money as you may be making in your real estate business, you will always experience losses if your total costs are too high.

With a few tips and tricks, you can help speed up the success of your real estate business. Continue reading to learn what you can do to improve your career in real estate!

Tips and Tricks to be Successful Faster

Have you passed the first year or two and still not seen any profits or success? If you have already done all you can to trim down your costs, then there are still a few other tips and tricks you can use in order to help your real estate business become successful faster.

There are plenty of real estate agents operating in nearly every single area. As far as buyers and sellers are concerned, there is plenty of fish in the sea, meaning many different agents to choose from.

To be successful, you have to separate yourself from the pack. You want to be the first name that comes to their minds when they decide to either sell or buy a home.

But how do you do this? Well, there are a few different things you can do to gain their attention– and their business!

Treat Clients Well

First thing first, always be kind and considerate to all your clients. Buying or selling a house is a huge life changing event! Understand that, and treat your clients like a doctor would a new a baby.

Even the best agent will lose business if they treat their customers poorly. As a real estate agent, you are dealing with people, real-life human beings, and should, therefore, treat them with respect and consideration.

While it may seem like a no brainer customer service can be hard. Its no lie that some people can be more difficult then others. Do your best to treat clients and customers as nicely as possible!

The best part part? Chances are they are more likely to use your services again. Oh and bonus points can be achieved when they recommend you and your services to their friends and family members!

Be Confident and Put Yourself Out There

Another way that you can increase the credibility of your name is by simply being confident in your abilities.

While you should never boast or claim to be an expert on a subject that you are not, there is no harm in taking pride in the work that you do. Become an expert! Easier said then done right? It might seem difficult, but put the time and effort in to learn your trade and to truly be an expert. It will take time and practice to achieve the title of a “real estate expert,” but earning experience is priceless. 

With the large or limited amount of knowledge you have take your confidence everywhere. You can not sit around waiting for the perfect home sale to appear on your desk. Especially when first starting off. Do the grind! Hand out business cards to people you meet, go door to door, do what it takes!

Feel free to talk to those around you about your work and invite them to check out your business if they are ever in need of real estate services.

You should be out looking for new clients almost every single day. If you do not meet anyone looking to purchase or sell real estate, make connections so that when the time comes that they do need an agent, your name is the one that comes to mind.

Find a Mentor

It may even be beneficial for you to reach out to another fellow real estate agent and ask them to be your mentor through the beginning stages of your real estate career.

This mentor should ideally allow you to tag along on a few of their real estate deals and show you how to properly fill out the necessary paperwork. Under no circumstances do you want the first time you view real estate paperwork to be when you sell your first home.

Set Goals

The most important thing you can do is to set goals (make sure they are achievable) and then complete the steps necessary to reach them. Start off with a goal of selling just one house every other month. 

As you find yourself continually reaching your goals, raise them! A successful real estate agent (or person in general) is constantly challenging themselves with new goals. This means you should never settle for just an “okay” achievement. Celebrate your successes and then push yourself to do more.

When people contact you, you should always be sure to respond to them quickly.

After all, these are your clients and therefore are important to your business. If you wait too long to respond to an interested client, chances are they will have moved on to other agents or a different real estate firm.

As you continue doing each of the tips and tricks above, it is important to remember to remain patient. No matter how good of a real estate agent you are, success will take time. Rushing yourself to be too successful too quickly will likely discourage you and may even make your passion for real estate less enjoyable.

How to Get Involved in Real Estate

Before you quit your current 9 to 5 job to enter the real estate industry there are a few things you will need to do first.

Plan for the Future

As I discussed above, it will take some time before your real estate business begins earning a profit. Because of this, you will need to either have enough savings to support you and your business in the meantime, or you will need to keep your current source of income.

While working two jobs (one of them being a start-up business) is not the most desirable lifestyle, it is more important to ensure that you and your family are taken care of during the transition period.

Once you have thoroughly planned for your transition into the real estate industry, you can begin the process of obtaining your real estate license!

Pass the Exam

Luckily for you, our entire website is designed to help people pass the exam and earn their real estate license. Please go read this article that I have written for exactly this purpose: How to Become a Real Estate Agent

After that, you need to do is understand the licensing requirements for the state you live in. I have another article that breaks down the requirements of each state here: How to Become a Real Estate Agent in Your State

Oh and don’t forget! Before you even have your real estate license, begin contacting local firms and real estate brokerages. It is never too soon to begin inquiring about a job opening.

Join the Right Circles

Boost your credibility and reputation by joining the National Association of Realtors. The National Association of Realtors holds its members to a code of ethics and its goal is to help realtors like you to become more successful!

Prior to joining the National Association of Realtors, you will need to join a local real estate association. Joining these organizations helps you to make connections and consequently make a larger profit.

Learn more about how you can become a member of the National Association of Realtors on their website!

Once you have your foot in the door with a real estate license, a job at a local brokerage, and are a member of one or more realtor associations you are ready to begin working towards being more successful in real estate. 

Just remember to renew your real estate license frequently and to follow our tips and tricks from the section above and you are sure to find success in your real estate endeavors!

Author:
Zackary Smigel is a real estate professional with a love for teaching, based out of Pittsburgh, PA. He's had the opportunity to work with some of the brightest minds in real estate and has spent years learning how to become a successful agent.