ERA’s Alex Vidal offers words of wisdom and advice for real estate agents launching their careers in the uncertain 2024 market.
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My real estate career path is a bit untraditional: I started as an assistant in a busy brokerage in Florida, mostly because I needed a job, not because I had any great interest in real estate. But guess what? I discovered I loved the industry and that I was good at it.
Fast forward 26 years to today, and I am leading an iconic, trailblazing brand. One thing that’s different about me is that I’m not leading from the top, I’m leading from the front lines.
I’m a hands-on kind of guy and feel strongly that I can make an impact at the agent level. After all, that’s where the magic happens in this industry.
To that end, I lead ERA agent learning sessions and masterminds in person and on the road, and we held ERA’s first, virtual national sales event for agents last fall.
So, when I was asked about my top tips for new agents, I was really excited. From in front of the classroom, conference room or stage, it’s easy to spot the newcomers. They are so eager to learn as they try to navigate the road to success in real estate.
And, while some of today’s new agents believe they have entered the business at a sub-optimal time because of market conditions, I have a different view. This is a great time for new agents because they are entering the business on relatively equal footing with other agents. They didn’t develop bad habits when there were more than 16.8 million home sales between 2020 and 2022, the greatest three-year run since 2005-2007.
Many have entered the business with a robust sphere of influence cultivated through their use of social media and technology.
Here are my five top tips for today’s new agents:
1. Activate ‘your why’
Why did you choose to enter real estate? What is your motivation? Let that be your driver — the reason you wake up every day to enjoy what you are doing.
2. Realize you are not in this alone
Every agent in your office, company or brand was once in your shoes as they just started out. Ask questions. Lots of questions. Get different perspectives and determine what works best for you. Also, don’t be afraid to ask someone to mentor you or ask your broker-owner to recommend someone in the company who might enjoy showing you the ropes.
3. Recognize and enhance your strengths
Do the same with your weaknesses. Take classes, read and learn. Always strive to be better.
4. Do not be afraid of what is changing around us: the market, economy, technology or anything else
At its core, real estate is a relationship business, and it always will be. Work on strengthening those you have and gaining more.
Learn how to infuse the excitement and experiences from your new career into the conversations with people you know and meet. Let people know you can help them. Those around you will pick up on your excitement and want to be a part of it.
5. Rack up wins — easy wins — one after another
These wins don’t have to be home runs like getting a buyer or listing agreement. Those will come. Instead, recognize and enjoy your real estate journey. Focus on the steps that it will take to get a client.
A win could be meeting someone new, attending a class or learning from an article. Get a win every day, and once you gain confidence from these wins, it will happen — you will turn someone in your sphere into a buyer or seller. Or they will sense your confidence and refer you to someone.
One buyer will lead to more. One listing should lead to more. But it starts with simple wins.
Real estate is such a great profession. Welcome aboard, and I wish you great success!
Alex Vidal is the president of ERA Real Estate.