Becoming a Real Estate Agent
Becoming a Real Estate Agent - I became a licensed real estate agent in 1986. Why? I had started to invest in real estate and realized that I had to rely on a Realtor to get me in to see some of the properties I was interested in purchasing, and then I had to wait for them for the comparables. Comparables (aka Comps) can best be found on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service). Only Realtors have access to the MLS in most parts of the country. There are other websites and systems that have comparables in some parts of the country, but nothing is like the MLS. That is where the true sales information lies. After I purchased my first several homes, I decided that I did not want to wait for or rely on a Realtor to buy and sell my own properties. I decided becoming a real estate agent was going to be the key to my success as a real estate investor.
Becoming a real estate agent or Realtor, as a real estate investor, will give you many advantages.
There are no disadvantages that I know of for becoming a real estate agent. Investors tend to be adamant one way or the other about being a licensed Realtor or becoming a real estate agent. I am definitely on the side of becoming a real estate agent. Being licensed has been one of the best tools that I have as an investor. Being licensed allows access to your database of ‘comps’ or "comparables." This is the data you need to buy and sell real estate – with good information. If you have a great Realtor, or you can get access to the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) without being licensed, great, but I still think it is better to be licensed than not. I personally like to do my own comparables (maybe that is the controlling part of me).
Some investors say becoming a real estate agent gives them more liability. I have two answers to that:
What are they doing to create liability? (becoming a real estate agent does not affect this)
Don’t they think a judge is going to consider them as an ‘expert’ when they find that you buy and sell real estate for investment purposes? (becoming a real estate agent doesn't increase your expertise; your real estate experience does that)
Some investors say that sellers won’t sell to you if you are licensed. I find the opposite is true. Becoming a real estate agent got me MORE deals. Most sellers are happy that I am licensed and “know what I am doing”. If you are licensed you will also get commission on each deal you buy or sell (if it is listed on the MLS). Every office is different on how they split the commissions received by the office.
My recommendation is to GET LICENSED!!! Becoming a real estate agent made a huge difference, and still does, towards my success as an investor.
When becoming a real estate agent or Realtor you must work directly under a licensed real estate broker.
To become a real estate broker, each state has their own requirements. I have been a broker since 1997. When you are a broker you can have other Realtors work underneath you, but becoming a broker should not be the “be all end all”, unless you really choose to own a real estate company. There are many expenses when you own your own office.
As I travel all over the country, I am asked frequently about becoming a real estate agent and how to locate a good broker. This is always an important part of becoming a real estate agent. You will want to work in an office environment that encourages creativity, investing and entrepreneurship. You will also want an office that provides exceptional real estate training. The company that I have found to be the best overall, in all states, is Keller Williams. I personally owned 4 real estate offices prior to joining Keller Williams. I am now an associate broker in a Keller Williams (Keller Williams) office, as well. Why? For the above reasons. Keller Williams has a fantastic training program along with several other key ingredients. Keller Williams is open and focused on real estate investing and entrepreneurship. The founder of Keller Williams, Gary Keller, along with Jay Papasan and Dave Jenks, co-authored several books on real estate investing. I was featured in their book, “The Millionaire Real Estate Investor”. Gary Keller also endorsed my books “Investing in Real Estate with Lease Options and Subject Tos”, "Rent to Buy" and "Rent to Sell". Much of my investing strategies and techniques have personally been focused around working with Realtors. Being part of an office will give you access to listings and relationships with other Realtors.
Keller Williams used to host a radio show on Mondays called “Millionaire Mondays” - these are now archived on their site. I have been on that show many times now. Keller Williams is the fastest growing real estate company in the U.S. and they are currently the 3rd largest, with well over 600 offices. Gary Keller invented a system that no one else has been able to reproduce.
Some of the best advantages to becoming a real estate agent or Realtor are:
The training that comes with becoming a Realtor – especially in Keller Williams
Access to the MLS – to get comps
Part of the commission on each purchase or sale you make
A network of Realtors (many opportunities might come to you before anyone else even knows about them)
Health insurance for self-employed at huge discounts
I recommend you become licensed and consider Keller Williams as an office for you. I will gladly sponsor you and also assist you in working as a Realtor. I can help you get started in the right direction. I have been licensed over 25 years. Let the Keller Williams office you go to know I am your sponsor and we can work together to help you as an investor and the best ways to use your real estate license. Wendy@WendyPatton.com or call me at 248-394-0767 ext 113 and I will assist you in making a great choice for your future. Becoming a real estate agent and Realtor is a great choice!