Do You Know What Your Real Estate Agent Does For A Living?

Those who have never been a real estate agent or who have never lived with one often have no idea of what the job really entails.

First, let me say that I’m talking about real estate professionals – people who are dedicated to their jobs and who earn a good living as a result of their efforts. There are plenty of agents who hold a license, but who treat real estate as a “job” rather than a career.

To begin with, agents have to study. They not only study for the exams to become licensed, but are required to take continuing education classes in order to keep that license. Really top agents also take other classes as they are available. Some pay to have those “alphabet designations” after their names to prove it, others just learn the materials.

In today’s climate, agents also have to learn how to deal with short sales and how to negotiate with the banks on behalf of their clients.

Real estate law changes all the time too – and they have to know the rules. More study.

Next they have to study their own market. Before they can tell a homeowner what their home might bring in today’s market, they have to be familiar with other similar homes, their selling prices, their days on the market, etc. Right now, home prices are in a constant state of change, so they have to stay on top of things every day.

Of course they have to know everything about the community and about the subdivisions within the community. Buyers want to know facts and figures when it comes to taxes, homeowners associations, and even city sewer and water fees.

Agents also have to learn a bit of psychology- so that they can tell a homeowner that they absolutely must do some cleaning and fix-up if they want to sell the house or that yes, they really do need to leave while the home is being shown. They have to do it in such a manner that they don’t insult the homeowner.

Sometimes they have to use those skills to tactfully deal with parents who let their children run wild in homes they’re viewing, or adults who think it’s OK to dig through a homeowners’ refrigerator or medicine cabinet.

They have to be persistent- following up and calling repeatedly when an agent on the other side of a transaction fails to return phone calls or when their own client can’t seem to get around to giving their lender the information they need to process a loan. And of course, with short sales and bank owned properties, persistence is one of the keys to success.

They absolutely must acquire some marketing skills, both to promote themselves and the homes they have listed. Top agents either learn how to take great photos or they hire a professional. They also write real estate ads that draw buyers in and make them want to see the house.

This is just a partial list. The truth is that top real estate professionals wear so many different hats that it would make most people’s heads spin. And sometimes they wear them all in one day.

So if you think all an agent does is open the door to a house and then write offers, get acquainted with a top agent and let them tell you about a week in their life.

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