Hidden Pitfalls of the Real Estate Market

It’s no secret: the world of real estate is not for the faint of heart. If you want to make it in this game, you’re going to need leanness, meanness and a whole lot of good luck. For a novice real estate agent, this world may seem like one filled with butterflies and roses, but make no mistake: make the wrong mistakes and your career will be over before it starts.

As we mentioned before, success in a real estate career is to a great extent dependent purely on luck. When you’re just starting out, you might stumble into the right circles and gain valuable clients early on, or you might make a mistake and doom your future in real estate right out of the gate. There’s something to be said for learning from your mistakes, sure; but what if there was a way to avoid the mistakes altogether?

Interested? Good! In this article, we’ll be detailing some of the most common mistakes beginner real estate agents make, and how to avoid them. We’ve asked experienced real estate agents and realtors to tell us about their career missteps, and how they would have done things differently if they had the chance to do it again. So what are some mistakes you should avoid making? Read on to find out!

Ruining your reputation

While it isn’t something that can necessarily happen overnight, ruining your reputation is easier than you might think. With so much of the real estate industry revolving around word of mouth and client satisfaction, real estate is a business in which those with bad reputations are unlikely to ever succeed.

There are a lot of things you can do to ruin your reputation. The most common way novice real estate agents do this is by mistreating their clients. While you may get away with pulling the wool over a fellow real estate agent’s eye’s, misleading, deceiving or mistreating a client is a surefire way to secure a one way ticket to nowhere for yourself.

You can also do extensive damage to your reputation by underperforming in your role as a real estate agent. Reputations are valuable not only among clients, but among employers as well. If you lack determination, initiative and skill, brokerages and private firms will hear about it, and they’ll be far less likely to hire you as a result. Stay on your toes and at the top of your game!

Accepting the wrong listings

Once you’ve worked in real estate long enough, you’ll realize that some listings are just better than others. Some listings sell quickly, easily and smoothly, while others lead to a long stay on the market and a lovecraftian horror of a closing process. Part of becoming successful in real estate is learning to spot good listings and avoid bad ones.

There are dozens of reasons why a listing might not be as attractive as others; for example, listings that have sustained structural or cosmetic damage. If the listing doesn’t look good, or worse, poses impending danger to clients and colleagues, it’s going to be a tough sell. Avoid listings like these at all costs!

Then there are the listings that aren’t suited to the current market. These aren’t quite as bad as the previous type of bad listing, but in general it’s better to avoid them if you can afford it. Homes that are in neighborhoods with depreciating property values or bad school districts generally are more difficult to sell, and can go for substantially less than their advertised price.

Failing to pick a lane

Another mistake beginner real estate agents often make is failing to find their niche and just trying to do it all. When you’re just starting out, it can be tempting to take all the work you can get, but as time goes on there’s a good chance you’ll achieve more success by making a name for yourself in one of the real estate submarkets.

There are a number of unique demographics real estate agents can specialize in catering to. Many real estate agents these days choose to focus on selling to international investors, securing high paying clients and a steady revenue stream early on in their career. But this isn’t the only real estate niche you can set yourself up in; far from it, actually!

Millennials, for example, are a rapidly growing demographic in the real estate market. While the stereotype of the unmotivated millennial has plagued this generation for years, it’s finally becoming crystal clear that they’re just as interested in buying homes as previous generations were. Regardless which demographic you choose to market to, give it some thought; it could make or break your career in real estate!

Not having a plan

Now, this one is a bit more serious than all but the first of the entries on this list. After all, if you don’t have a plan, how are you going to build your real estate empire? Having a cohesive and comprehensive business plan early on in your career is an important, dare we say essential part of avoiding the mistakes that have cost many their careers and livelihoods.

Even for a rookie real estate agent, a workable business plan isn’t the hardest thing to formulate. With a few straightforward business classes and some good old-fashioned common sense, you should be able to whip up a relatively sound business plan in no time. The specifics aren’t as important as the sense of direction that having a plan will equip you with.

If you don’t have a business plan, you’re setting yourself up for all kinds of unfortunate mishaps. You’ll have trouble investing your earnings, because your investments aren’t part of a broader strategy. You’ll have trouble marketing effectively, because you aren’t sure as to what exactly it is you’re marketing. Study up, and make a business plan!

Not asking for help

Today, there’s a strange and unhealthy stigma that comes with asking for help. There are those that believe that seeking the assistance of those with more experience is a weakness, but we strongly disagree. There’s no feasible reason why you should deprive yourself of a resource as valuable as the advice of an experienced realtor or real estate agent.

It’s not at all difficult to find a real estate agent willing to lend you a helping hand. Look up one or two experienced agents in your area, and give them a call. After a short chat, chances are they’ll be more than happy to have coffee with you sometime. You can pick their brain, ask for advice and have them tell you about their worst mistakes. Chances are you’ll walk away from the conversation a lot wiser than you were before!


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