Building a Successful Real Estate Career: Advice for New Agents

Embarking on a career in real estate in the Okanagan is an exciting and rewarding opportunity. As a new real estate agent in Kelowna, you’ll find yourself navigating a complex and competitive industry that requires a strong work ethic, effective communication skills and a thorough understanding of the local market.

With over 16 years experience selling real estate in the Central Okanagan, Kelowna area,  I truly hold the opinion that a dedicated real estate agent needs to approach the real estate business as a full-time job and as a small business owner/operator. 

With the right strategies and tools, you can establish yourself as a successful real estate professional in the Okanagan region. In this blog post, we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks to help make your transition into Okanagan real estate a little bit easier:

  1.  Become familiar with the local real estate market. Kelowna is a desirable location for many, with a growing population and a strong economy. The competition here can be fierce, making it imperative that you stay up-to-date on market trends, inventory levels, and pricing strategies. Know where our real estate market is positioned on the traditional 7-year curve. In 2009 when the global rescission affected the Kelowna real estate conditions, it took over 5 years for our market to bounce back to flourishing levels. 

  2.  Establish a work schedule. With so much to do, it’s imperative that you create a schedule to help manage your time. The most successful real estate professionals wake up early and set aside a couple of hours each morning to complete important tasks. By handling these tasks first, you can walk into the rest of your day with a sense of accomplishment. Make time schedules and checklists your friend.

  3.  Prioritize your real estate marketing. Developing a strong online presence will be a huge help in this industry: not only will clients find you easier, but other agents looking to refer buyers to Kelowna, West Kelowna as well. Build a professional website and prioritize creating content for social media. Document your journey on social media to establish yourself as an expert in the field and share stories to draw an audience. 

  4.  Become friends with your phone. As a Realtor® in Kelowna, you’ll have many conversations with local Okanagan clients and potential Canadian + International real estate buyers so it’s essential to have excellent communication skills. Practice active listening as this will help you build rapport with your clients and establish trust. 

  5.  Dedicate time to prospecting and building your customer relations software (CRM). Prospecting involves reaching out to potential friends, whether through door-knocking, cold calling or hosting events. This is an essential aspect of building a successful real estate business here in the Okanagan. It’s important to remain consistent in your efforts. As your business builds up, the key to moving forward is finding great ways to keep in touch. Real estate referrals are everything. Eventually you may find yourself with a steady stream of new clients and referrals. Always follow up, always ask for business and never chase the immediate sale. The most successful real estate agents see the value in long-term rapport with valuable real estate clients. 

  6.  Say yes in the beginning.  As you develop your craft and success in Kelowna real estate, learn the power and advantages of saying no. At the beginning of your career, don’t be afraid to take on smaller properties or less lucrative deals. Every deal is an opportunity to gain experience, hone your skills and build your real estate in the Kelowna community. These smaller deals can lead to more significant opportunities in the future. As you cross 5 years or more in real estate, you will start to see the value in ensuring you look after your clientele. Best real estate tip: underpromise and overdeliver to your client. 

  7.  Purchase Client Retentive Management Software (CRM). This invaluable tool for realtors is used to keep track of appointments and follow up with clients. Leveraging this tool can help you streamline your workflow and close deals more efficiently. Here’s a tip, use CRM to add notes to your client’s profile to keep track of important events in their lives, such as birthdays and holidays, one-year home purchase anniversaries, and then write them a letter or give them a call when the day rolls around. Some popular choice for CRM software are Follow-Up-Boss, KvCore, Salesforce and Top Producer. 

  8.  Sincere connection with your clients will them feel comfortable and they’ll be more open to trusting your real estate advice. Always act in their best interest, take note of their personal lives and show you care about their well-being. Ask questions about their family, hobbies or events coming up in their lives. Be personable, relatable and take a genuine interest in their real estate needs. In doing all of this, you’ll cultivate a much stronger connection with your clients, have higher chances of getting repeat business, and real estate referrals to other Kelowna families looking to move. 

  9.  Networking is essential in this industry. Building relationships with other brokers, agents and industry professionals will help you expand your business and gain valuable insights. Attend local events and join industry associations to connect with others in the field. Become a sponge and soak up all real estate advice. The learning curve in the real estate business can be steep. Make sure you enjoy learning before jumping in with two feet. 

  10.  Be patient and persistent. Real estate in the Central Okanagan is a long-term game, and success doesn't happen overnight. Develop a solid business plan, set realistic goals and work hard to achieve them. Setbacks and rejection are a part of the job, don’t let them discourage you. Know that your hard work and client dedication will take you further in the real estate business than any real estate magazine publication.

  11.  Always ask for feedback. Be open to suggestions for improvement and ask for feedback after a call or meeting. Constructive criticism is a quick way to improve on your real estate skills and grow your business. It will help you identify areas where you can improve your approach to better meet the needs of your clients. Asking for price feedback on your Okanagan listings will also serve tremendous value to all your sellers. 

  12.  Once your volume of sales becomes consistent, consider bringing on a real estate assistant. Real estate agents have a lot on their plates, from scheduling appointments and managing listings, to answering phone calls and following up with clients. A real estate assistant can help manage some of the workload, and are great for catching things that may slip through the cracks. Checks and balance systems are essential to the growth of your Okanagan real estate business. 

To achieve success in the real estate business, it's essential to approach it with dedication and commitment. My clients can expect a high level of service and expertise, and I am always willing to go the extra mile to ensure their satisfaction. If you're interested in learning more about my experience in real estate in Kelowna, I would love to connect over a cup of coffee and chat. Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts, and I hope to have the opportunity to work with you in the future.

Posted by Gillian Krol Personal Real Estate Corporation on
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