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Career Story: Independent Real Estate Broker

Independent Real Estate Broker

Job Title: Licensed Real Estate Sales Person

Type of Company: My company is in the business of selling real estate.

Education: BS, Finance, Siena College •• AAS, Business Administration, SUNY-Cobleskill

Previous Experience: I worked in the mortgage business in sales and mortgage underwriting for twenty years. For a short time I started a window treatment business in the middle of my mortgage career.

Job Tasks: My responsibilities include finding buyers and sellers for residential homes. I do this by "prospecting" -- telling everyone I know that I sell real estate and encouraging them, by mail, email, phone or in person, to refer people to me. Chances are someone I know will know someone who can use my help. The majority of my business comes from referrals but at times I do cold calling. Once I find a buyer, I have to determine what his needs are and find him a home that fits his criteria. I advise clients to speak with a lender before we begin our search to make sure they can obtain a mortgage. Once they are set to purchase I start sending them listings and making appointments to view the property. When they are ready to make an offer I write up the contract and present the offer to the listing agent and negotiate further if needed. From the point the contract is accepted I work with the buyer until the home is closed and we hand over the keys.

If I make a listing appointment for a seller I must ask them several questions so I can prepare for the appointment. Once I understand their answers I search the Multiple Listing Service and find comparables to determine market value for their home. I compile the information in a report and meet with them in person to discuss the value of the home and my marketing plan. The goal is to walk away from the appointment with a signed listing agreement so I can get to work on selling their home. I hold open houses and again tell everyone I know plus all the agents around about my listing. Daily I must keep up on the market and the economy so that I am versed in the local real estate market.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is making a sale and closing it. I also enjoy working with people and love helping first-time home buyers through the process.

The worst part is that many sellers believe their homes are worth more then they are and do not value my truthful professional opinion. They invariably know more than I do, and this is one of the most frustrating parts of my job.

Job Tips: If you are pursuing a career in real estate you must have backup income or money in the bank for to cover several months expenses. You are paid on commission only. It takes years to build your business and you have to be very patient. Expect to work hard; this is one of the hardest jobs I have ever had and in some ways the most rewarding as it truly is my own business.

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