Being a successful Realtor takes more than earning your state real estate license and being hired by a broker. Finding listings and closing deals takes sales skills and perseverance. If the economy is down and home prices have dropped, you may have to increase your activity just to make the same amount of income as you did when prices were high. There are certain real estate sales techniques that you can use to increase your chance of being successful regardless of other factors that can impact the market.
Make a list of family, friends and professional associates who you know in the area. Call them to tell them that you are a Realtor and, if they plan to sell their house, to call you first.
Don't sit behind your desk all day, unless you're calling homeowners to ask if they plan to move in the near future. Otherwise, network in person to spread the word to your personal and business contacts that you are in the real estate field.
Join your local Chamber of Commerce and those in adjacent cities. Become active in the organization so the community will begin to recognize your name. Hand out business cards at each function and tell attendees to call you if they have any questions about real estate or if they would just like a market value analysis of their home.
Go door to door to generate prospective clients, if you have the time. Work during working hours to secure your next sale, and don't be tempted to do nothing or become distracted by other activities besides selling. Call prior clients to inquire if they are ready to upgrade their residences.
Be willing to work on all days, at any hour. Some clients won't be able to view homes except after work at night. Holding open houses to find new buyers may require you to work on the weekends. When someone calls at an odd hour to place an offer on a home, make yourself available.
Take the time to build relationships with your prospective clients. If they trust you, they may be more inclined to hire you to sell their homes or help them find a new one. Send birthday greetings or call to touch base once in a while, for example.
Set income goals. Know how many houses you must sell to reach your goals. If it's not realistic, then either change your target commissions to reflect how you have performed in the past or increase your average cut with each sale. Knowing what you have to do will keep you focused and working.
Give above-average customer service. Take your buyers' and sellers' phone calls and follow through with any promises. Call them back promptly when they leave a message.
Track the progress of sales contracts and ensure that buyers and sellers meet the dates on their due diligence disclosures and other requirements. Call the title company to know when the report will be completed. Meet the appraiser and all inspectors at the house to ensure that there will be nothing to postpone the close. Stay in close contact with the lender so you will be informed at the first sign that the buyer may not qualify. Don't become a pest, but work in the best interest of your clients.