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Thinking of a career in real estate

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By Andre de Villiers

As an experienced real estate trainer, I have witnessed first-hand the upsides and downsides of a real estate career as a commission earner. While there are numerous positive aspects that make it an attractive profession, there are also challenges that new agents must be prepared to face. In this guide, I will provide you with five points highlighting the positive aspects of a real estate career as a commission earner, followed by three points addressing the negative aspects. By understanding both the advantages and disadvantages, you can make informed decisions and navigate your real estate journey with confidence.

Positive aspects of a real estate career as a commission earner:

  1. Income potential: Real estate offers a high income potential, especially as a commission-based agent. Your earning potential is directly tied to your efforts and the transactions you close. By being proactive, building a strong network, and consistently working on your skills, you can increase your commissions significantly.
  2. Flexibility and independence: As a commission earner in real estate, you have the freedom to create your own schedule and work independently. This flexibility allows you to balance your personal and professional life according to your preferences. You can choose to work full-time or part-time, depending on your goals and commitments.
  3. Unlimited growth opportunities: Real estate is an industry where you can continually grow and expand your business. With each successful transaction, you build your reputation and increase your network, leading to potential referrals and repeat clients. As you gain experience and expertise, you can also explore avenues such as property management, real estate investing, or becoming a team leader.
  4. Helping people achieve their dreams: One of the most rewarding aspects of a real estate career is the opportunity to help clients achieve their homeownership dreams. You play a crucial role in guiding buyers and sellers through the intricate process of buying or selling a property, and your expertise can make a significant impact on their lives.
  5. Variety and excitement: Real estate is a dynamic industry that offers a wide range of experiences and challenges. Every day is different, and you’ll encounter various properties, clients, and negotiations. This diversity keeps the job interesting and ensures that you’re constantly learning and growing.

Negative aspects of a real estate career as a commission earner:

  • Income uncertainty: Since real estate agents work on a commission basis, their income can be unpredictable. Market fluctuations, seasonal variations, and the time it takes to close deals can impact your cash flow. It’s important to plan and manage your finances wisely to navigate through lean periods.
  • Self-employment responsibilities: As an independent contractor, you are responsible for running your own business. This includes managing your expenses, marketing yourself, maintaining licenses, and handling some administrative tasks. The added responsibilities of self-employment can be overwhelming for some individuals. Assistance in this regard varies from real estate brand to real estate brand and some offer higher degrees of admin support for a fee or a slightly lower commission split.
  • Competitive industry: Real estate is a highly competitive industry, with many agents vying for clients and listings. To succeed, you must differentiate yourself from the competition and continuously work on building your reputation and expertise. It requires consistent effort and a strategic approach to stand out in a crowded market.

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