Today’s Real Estate Agent and Their Future
Real estate has changed so much over the last 50 years; from the “good ole boy” handshake to the 21 page contract and the 10-15 page listing packet. With every step of the way agents have had to learn and revise the way they think when it comes to managing their business.
Just like the change of the “paper trail” for agents, the way we sell real estate has been a huge game changer for our industry as well. We have gone from meeting our clients face to face to sign documents (this is still the best practice) to the fax machine and now the email scanner to send them their documents to sign. We send email or text alerts to our buyers and sellers now on properties instead of hand delivering the information. The number one thing that has changed the Real Estate profession forever is “Technology.”
Love it or hate it technology is an ever evolving, business changing roll that will never go away. The internet changed the face of real estate early in the 1990’s and since then syndications of MLS material, social media and blogging have catapulted the way real estate works on an hourly basis. Not only are the agents themselves having to keep up with the latest and greatest, but the real estate brokerages as well are having to stay “in the know” on all technology. When surveying many clients on how they chose their Realtor of today, many answer that they want a “tech savvy” agent who promotes their properties anywhere and everywhere. Plus most clients want their agent at their “mobile” fingertips so that they are able to reach them 24/7.
As an agent and/or brokerage it is our responsibility to research what technology works for each client/agent/brokerage. There are so many platforms to choose from and many scams to catch the eye of the agents to attempt to get them to pay for more services that are sometimes even free. This is where the brokerages come in. All brokerages should be helpful and knowledgeable on internet and social media scams. Training the agents on the rules and regulations of what they are publishing and where to publish them is a good aspect to have in place as well.
To cultivate a new breed of agent each brokerage should set out to give the best training they can to their agents. Knowledge is key, when it comes to technology. Even showing the oldest agent the simplest steps can prove to their clients “they still have it.” Agents have shown that they love the training most of their companies give them, however, once they finish a class agents still feel lost when they are putting what they learned into practice. You can’t hold each agents hand through the internet process but you can be there to answer questions, re-teach a follow up class once a month and listen to their needs. Not every agent is going to get what social media is or even want to participate, especially the seasoned agents. Some younger agents may prefer to only text/facebook/or email their clients when 90% of the general public still want the phone call or the actual presence of their Realtor. Mobile and social media is scary for some agents but it leads the future on how clients find the properties, agents and brokerages. The bandwagon of the internet from the 1990’s has become the mobile and social media bullet train of the future for real estate.
Let the agents no matter the age teach one another the best practices of real estate. When agents work together, things get accomplished. Different generations teach one another the skills that they know and when they put them into practice the cultivating of a new breed of agent comes to life no matter if you’ve been in the business 50 years or just 5 days.
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