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Starting a new career often seems like a daunting task, especially in a field where much of your success comes from your reputation or ability to network with individuals. If you are starting a career in real estate, there are some practical steps you can take in order to have smooth sailing in the foundational steps of your profession.

Get Licensed in Your State

As with any job, you need to make sure you obtain the correct qualifications necessary to practice in the field. Some jobs require a degree, others no formal education whatsoever and some ask for proven work experience. As for real estate, you will be expected to hold a license in your state. In order to earn your license, it is necessary to complete courses and pass an exam. Thankfully, there are a plethora of short-term online courses available for those wishing to gain knowledge in this area. 

Find a Brokerage

Most realtors are required to operate under a broker who will keep an eye on their transactions. Do a Google search to research which brokerage is best aligned with your business practices. The sooner you find a brokerage to work underneath, the faster you can begin making commissions off houses. Do some research on typical commission rates for realtors in your community before making your final decision.

Develop a Marketing Plan

Perhaps the most intimidating part of becoming a real estate agent is the task of creating a client base. However, creating a solid marketing plan can undoubtedly make the assignment seem less menacing. Begin by looking at your own contacts on your phone and throughout social media. You may feel like only having 40 contacts, or 300 Facebook friends, is a small place to start. But keep in mind that each of those individuals most likely has an even larger network of contacts they can refer you to. Once you begin expanding your network in this way, it becomes much easier to network with individuals.

In addition to reaching out to people, you may want to consider beginning one or two social media pages for your business, creating a website, or looking for ad spaces on other sites or in publications.

Prepare for Your First Client

Once you do procure your first client meeting, you will want to make sure you are prepared for every curveball that might be thrown your way. Remember the importance of first impressions. You will naturally be putting a lot of pressure on this first meeting. While you may be a bit nervous, try to relax and allow your personality to come forth while also keeping a professional atmosphere. Most clients love a realtor with an agreeable personality, but they also want to trust you with this big life decision. Establish your credibility during your meeting, but also be genuine with them. After you’ve made a solid first impression, your clients will be sure to refer you to others and perhaps use you again in the future.