Thinking about becoming a Real Estate agent?  Find information about ECAR’s pre-licensing school or call our office at 860-892-2595.  Jump in a Saturday class, or plan for a fall evening class!  In the meantime, this article will help you decide if this career is right for you.
BY JOSEPH SANTINI – If you’re thinking about becoming an agent, have a clear view of what it’s like, so you can start out on the right foot

From the outside looking in, the reality of what real estate agents do and what we are like is often quite different than the perception consumers — or even aspiring agents — have, which is often gleaned from relatively few encounters and reality TV.

The actuality of what we do, how hard we work and what it takes to buy and sell real estate would likely surprise most people outside of the industry.

Here are my top 10 myths surrounding being a real estate agent.

1. Making a big income is very easy with little work and time involved

Although being a real estate professional is not hard if you love it, and you certainly can make a big income. But like all businesses, there is much to learn and do, and selling real estate is very time-intensive.

2. You need the looks and personality of a major movie star

These nice attributes certainly won’t hurt you and your bottom line, but the most successful real estate professionals are the ones who know the business inside and out, prepare and take great care of their customers.

3. You have to be a technology expert

Although you don’t have to be an IT expert as many top producers are not, the better you are with technology, the easier it will be to run your business. With that said, know that you can always hire an assistant. Being a people expert is much more important.

4. It takes a long time to make some income

The agents who come in and take advantage of all the training they can and work hard doing the right things when it comes to prospecting really shorten the time it takes to make money. They do well sooner rather than later.

5. The hours you put in will be less than a regular job

The agents who believe this probably are not making a lot of money.  Although you don’t have to work 24/7, you do have to put in hours that would probably exceed a regular job, especially in the beginning.

The freedom that being a real estate agent gives you makes it much easier to take than more traditional employment.

6. I can do real estate part-time

Although you can do real estate part-time, you won’t be very effective. To make any significant income and to assist your buyers and sellers correctly, it will be very difficult to do real estate on a part-time basis.

7. People will be flocking to me to sell their homes, and people will be giving me leads all day long

To make a steady income in real estate, like any sales job, you will have to spend a good part of your day doing various prospecting activities to bring customers to your business. Not much business will drop into your lap.

8. I don’t need any training or support — I got this

Regardless of your background or the personal skills that you bring to the table, to get your business up and running fast, to stay out of legal troubleand to stay in this business long term, someone will have to show you how.

The cost of not getting any training when you start usually results in a quick end to your real estate career, usually because you could not generate enough income.

9. You need to know a lot of people to be successful

Knowing many people who you can contact and try to assist with their real estate needs is nice and will make things easier for you, but your work ethic and the success of your prospecting activities will bring customers to your business.

10. All brokerages are the same, so I can hang my license anywhere

Brokerage models vary tremendously, and where you choose to hang your license may decide if you are successful long term or not in the business.

For example, training and support are very important to a successful real estate career, but some brokerage models may offer very little of it, if any, and some may build their entire model around it.

The great thing about real estate is that all types of people and personalitiescan be successful. The key is to have a clear view of what it’s really like to be a real estate agent and to start out the correct way with full training and support so that you can do all the right things and have continued success for years to come.