If you have never been in the real estate business you probably don’t know what questions to ask to make the best business decision for you.
There are many different business models. I find it interesting when I get a call from someone and they say, “What are your fees and commission splits”? That is typically not the right agent for me, their focus is wrong. Or they may ask, “So how much money does a new agent make in real estate”? People don’t like the answer but it is up to you. How much time and energy do you want to put into it? Are you willing to treat it like a job, show up every day?
If your answer is yes, next I will tell you that your income is a direct reflection of the price point in which you work. Do you have a business plan? If no, let’s make one!
There are all kinds of real estate business models. Finding the right one for you is really important. If you look at the major franchise companies and what they offer, what the fees are and what the splits are, in the end, they are all very similar.
I go back to, this is a relationship business. Do you connect with the person you are meeting with? How are they going to help you, are they even the one that is going to help you? What kind of new agent training do they offer? Is it live instruction, online or webinars, clock hour instruction, do you have to pay extra for it?
What happens if you have a legal problem? How is that handled? Who pays for legal defense?
Who is going to help me with my marketing and advertising? If that is even available, how much does it cost?
What about tools, a CRM (Contact Management System), a CMA program for doing market analysis, Listing Syndication to the internet, is it offered, who pays for it, who gets the leads? Will I have to make and pay for my own listing videos? What about marketing materials, what is available and who pays for them? Is there any advertising available? Do you have floor time? Where is my business going to come from, what about leads? What is the franchise fee? How large is your company, what is your market share?
I truly don’t think that real estate companies, in general, are out to get you, they are in business. Some make their profits from fees and others from commissions. Did you know you can go to work for real estate companies that will give you 90% or 100% of the commission? Those firms are not where a new agent should be. The liability in this industry is way too high to go it alone and that is what you would be doing in a firm like that.
To be successful having a CRM is important, a CRM should help you with contacting your database, keeping in touch with prospects and not forgetting about those you need to be in contact with. This is something all agents get when they are a part of Coldwell Banker Bain.
A CMA program is going to help you with the valuation of a home that an owner wants to sell, how much is it worth. Our CMA marries the MLS data with all of the wonderful Coldwell Banker Bain marketing pieces not only showing the seller the value but what the agent will do to market the home and what sets them apart from the competition.
Listing syndication is really important. All of our agent’s listings are syndicated to 19 real estate websites which in turn syndicate to an additional 500 sites. Here is the best part, our agents receive all of their own leads directly. Most real estate companies if they syndicate listings will direct the leads to the firm and the firm will sell the leads as referrals to other agents in the firm.
Video is where it is in real estate. Coldwell Banker Bain automatically makes a video for every single agent’s listing, did you know that Coldwell Banker has the largest real estate channel on YouTube? Well, they do!
The superior marketing pieces at Coldwell Banker Bain really set our agents apart from the competition. Both the digital and print presentations are exceptional and fully customizable. Cbx is also a tool unique to Coldwell Banker, a digital pricing presentation that also shows agents and sellers where their buyer is most likely to come from. This can be used for target marketing to those likely to buy.
Most agents if left to do their own advertising, especially when new and on a budget, usually don’t. We offer digital and print advertising to better help our sellers get their home sold and generate leads for our agents.
I find it interesting that most real estate companies no longer offer floor time. I think that is because there is little thought as to where they are located and no budget to generate floor business. Our three Tacoma branches are located in very desirable neighborhoods and communities, Proctor, Pt. Ruston and The Village at Chambers Bay in University Place. Our beautiful Puyallup branch is located on South Hill with easy access to Highway 512, downtown Puyallup and the Meridian corridor.
Franchise offices typically charge a 6% franchise fee, at Coldwell Banker Bain, Bain pays your franchise fee to Coldwell Banker!
One other thing you should also know about Coldwell Banker Bain, we are Coldwell Banker’s largest franchise in the world with 32 offices from Bellingham to Oregon City. Our agents are a part of something bigger. They can go into any one of our branches, log on to the computers with their codes, copy and scan, use conference rooms and get assistance from staff and managers. Market share comes with ease with such a large company!
So here are my top 23 questions to ask a real estate brokerage when interviewing. I hope you will consider Coldwell Banker Bain and we would be happy to answer these questions and more. I wish you all the very best in your new real estate career!
Tasha Pasco, Principal Managing Broker
Coldwell Banker Bain Tacoma | Puyallup