Starting A Real Estate Business – Steps And Tips For A Successful Venture

When starting a real estate business, you should think not only of the possible profits you will gain. More importantly, you should know the right steps to take and the tips to follow in order to earn those profits.

Save Money
Even before putting up the business, make sure you have sufficient funds for covering the startup costs. Initial expenses for a business includes rental fee for your office, outlay for office materials and equipment, office sign, website building, marketing and of course, business insurance. Your start up money should also cover the operating expenses for the first 3-4 months after you have put it up.

Acquire Broker’s License
The requirements for obtaining license real estate broker vary on each state. Thus, you should know first what your own state requires from those applying to get their license. In many states, the requirements include taking a course approved by the state, minimum age of 21 and salesperson experience of two years (real estate practice).

Choose Your Office Location
Ideally, any business establishment or office must be located in a place where it will be easily seen and will be easily accessible to people (both your clients and your agents). Other factors to consider are zoning and square footage of the actual office.

Build A Website
Having a professional-looking website will increase the value of your business. A website can also be an effective marketing tool. On your site, you can post and display all listings, both your own and those from other services. A website is very helpful to your real estate business because more and more people are nowadays turning to online resources when searching for homes that they can buy. You need to be familiar, as well, with other related technologies used in real estate business.

Avail For An Insurance
Omissions and error insurance is necessary for your venture. As a broker, you have agents whose actions you should be liable for. In case a disappointed client sues you, the insurance will make sure your business will be legally covered.

Prepare And Agreement
An agreement for independent contractor should be developed and written. This document will outline what you expect from your agent, his/her behavior, individual agent’s commission split, etc. You are an independent contractor so you should not expect your agents to spend required time in the office. However, they must adhere to the code of ethics required of them. You are also allowed to set policies which they must follow in case they need to use space and resources in the office.

Provide Tools And Equipment In Your Office
Your business office should be well-equipped in terms of facilities and tools. There should be a waiting area, a conference room with appropriate furniture, reception desk, copier, fax, phone and computer. You can provide your agents with computers that they can use. You may include in your policies that agents pay for desk fees to compensate operation costs.

Recruit Your Agents
Your agents are your ally in the business. You need to choose established agents whose experiences will benefit your business. New and beginner agents will bring in excitement and energy in the brokerage business. However, they need to be trained so they will not make any legal errors. In recruiting agents, understand that they must also be provided with sales training.

Starting a Real Estate Business

The real estate industry is very sensitive to economic changes like interest rates and the cost of materials in building houses. Interest rates in particular can easily swing the number of sales that are completed during any quarter of the year. Rising interest rates will slow down the sales and falling rates will aid the sales of real estate. This is an important fact in the real estate business as this can absolutely cause rapid changes in income from the sales that can be made.

With this in mind, the time to buy an agency that comes up for sale may be when the real estate business is in the doldrums. A hot real estate market will make an existing firm worth more, as their income will be higher during this period of time. Of course if you follow this course of action, you will have to wait out the slow down in the markets. Another factor in the purchase or start-up a real estate company is the state licensing requirements.

Most states have serious requirements for real estate agents and brokers. Brokers have a much stiffer requirement in most states than an agent. The requirements include passing exams and a fixed number of educational hours for both agents and brokers. There is also a requirement for continuing education. These state mandated steps to a career in the real estate business would have to be met before an agency could be purchased or started. Since this industry is regulated and has strong legal steps to comply with, this licensing plus experience would be an initial step to being an owner in this field. This is not a business that can be stepped into by just paying out some money.

An agent can have the goal of owning their own firm, but it will take planning and meeting the state rules to make this happen. Once a potential owner has these steps out of the way, finding an existing business to buy will be in order. A quick check of real estate business listings reveals that they are usually found in larger cities and the asking price is significant. There are also resales of franchise companies. Just typing into a search engine, “Real estate businesses for sale”, came up with this quick check. A buyer could also check with business brokers and real estate brokers in their city. Another source worth checking out would be a franchise connection. An in place real estate business is advantages as the name is already known and will get clients due to this. When you start a company from the ground up you do not have this advantage. An existing business with several locations will come with a higher price tag than what you could start your own business for.

Another way to gain ownership would be buying into an existing business. This could work if you have a solid relationship with the current owner. The problem is you will not have the final say in most decisions unless you are buying controlling interest.

Specialty real estate firms

Most people think about a firm that helps with the buying and selling a home. There are several other areas of specialization. A real estate firm could become expert in buying and selling commercial property, farmland and farms, farm product processing plants, rental properties and shopping centers. Actually a broker could cut out a niche market from many that are available in the real estate business. If you have an area of expertise, this could become something that could be marketable and cut out a lot of competition in certain situations. Some real estate firms have unique departments that handle certain types of real estate marketing. The decision you must make is what kind of a firm are you going to own. You may have to start your own in order to make it happen.

You could also get into real estate management and the buying and selling of these rental properties, which is a very unique part of the industry. Shopping center related firms could be in from the start of a project. They can help with the formation of the firm to build and own the property and then handle the rentals and day-to-day management of the center.

The point of all of this is there are areas of real estate specialization that lend themselves to a business that just works in this real estate category.

Finding the money to make your dream happen

You may not have the total purchase price for an existing business. The question is how do you come up with the balance to make the deal. Finding a source to lend you the money is one way to come up with the needed funds. There are businesses that offer loans to new owners of businesses. These can be found on the Internet by just doing a search. Family and friends could be another source of money. One way to get the needed money is to take in a partner for the business. If you have a friend in the business maybe they would be interested in owning part of the existing company. All of these possible money suppliers will have different requirements for paying the money back.

Make sure you can see your way clearly on how you will accomplish the pay back. This business can be adversely affected by interest rates so you would need a second way to make the payments. A person thinking about ownership in this field must remember that it can be feast or famine as far as sales and commissions go. This is not like being in the restaurant business or owning a printing company. Successful brokers can make considerable money in a good market. They can also have periods that are very tight as to sales. The brokers that succeed have a policy of putting away some of their earnings during good times to cover the less profitable times. Doing this just shows the broker has a realistic view of the business.

Conclusions

This business can be extremely profitable during low interest rate economies. The legal and state requirements make the ownership of a brokerage firm more difficult to own than is the case with other businesses. Buying and selling a real estate business is somewhat more difficult due to the restrictions that are placed on the owner of a real estate firm. You must have the appropriate licenses in place before you can begin operation. This is true whether you buy a company or start one up from scratch. Finding a firm you can afford will take some time and research on your part. Hiring a professional business broker may speed up the search.

Deciding early on if you want to be a specialist will set other decisions in place. Niche areas that you are an expert in will help cut the competition somewhat. A general real estate business will have the potential for more clients, but will need and ongoing advertising campaign to gain listings and clients looking to buy. The start-up is cheaper to open, but will have little cash flow like an existing firm. Money flow is the one huge advantage buying an existing business offers to the new owner.

Real Estate Business – A Smart Game!

Real estate as a career option can be very rewarding if you are a person willing to take risks in life and have a knack for business. There is no pre-requisite degree or a must have certificate to be in the field of real estate. Anybody can choose to deal in this business. Real estate transactions can be any, like renting a house, or buying or selling a house, property, leasing a shop, or helping someone invest in a land or property etc. The real estate business includes a number of transactions, involving big money and legal documentation. Therefore, it also requires the service of attorneys, insurance company agents, bankers, tax experts, and many others besides the broker, the buyer and the seller.

Each year innumerous people try their luck in real estate. Some burn their fingers, while some make good money and grow further. Thus, one has to understand, business is not everybody’s cup of tea. You have to be wise, practical, and understand the market trends. Being friendly with people and having a wide contact list does not help in any business. Any business needs an initial capital to bank on. Sometimes a property in hand looses its value after purchase. Sometimes, you may have to wait for a longer period to find a profitable buyer.

Thus a positive attitude and patience is important in this field. One must also have a back up plan and alternative idea in any deal. Many a times in this business as a broker, meeting the clients’ expectation becomes a daunting task. Showing the client the property or houses after houses makes it an exhausting job, besides burning ones finances. As a real estate broker, it is important to understand the client and his needs and motivation behind the deal as well.

In real estate business marketing skills plays an important role. Understanding the psychology of the client, the seller, what is important to them, and what impresses the opposite person, what to highlight in a conversation etc helps strike a deal. Prompt customer service, easy and smooth legal transactions and paper works leaves behind a good impression. Like every business, here too, referral from past clients’, by the word of mouth really helps earn a good name and trust amongst clients.

Many people love the field of business, for they are their own boss. You have the freedom to work the way you wish to, and develop your own working style.