by Sydney Roy, Marketing Advisor @ManfredSchool
As a new Real Estate Salesperson, you will need to work under a “sponsoring broker.” The brokerage you choose to align yourself with will be the foundation of your new business, providing you with ongoing mentor-ship and the backing of it’s excellent community reputation. Here are 5 key characteristics of a good sponsoring broker, you should look for:
1. Commission Split Commission split percentages differ from broker to broker. Although this is important, remember not to base your entire decision off commission split. There are many other factors to consider. That being said, commission splits affect earning potential, making it an important factor. Make sure to be aware of what commission you should expect from your real estate sales.
2. Mentor-ship and Support As a new agent running their own business, you will need support and mentor-ship. Some brokerages have training and education programs that can help you start your new career. Ask about the structure and frequency of these programs. As with anything you are new to, it is responsible to set yourself up with the proper guidance. Make sure there is someone who is willing and able to answer your questions. Additionally, what systems does the brokerage use? What MLS Technology are they using? Does their brokerage business model take advantage of online platforms? Does the brokerage provide you with leads? Or, are you responsible for generating your own leads.
3. Reputation It is beneficial to select a brokerage that has a good standing with the community. You will want to align yourself with a broker who the community trusts and who is actively involved in the community. Ask yourself if you were buying or selling a home, would you want this brokerage to handle the transaction? Your broker should be actively involved in the market. An active broker is usually up to date on the market, neighborhoods, strategies, and technology.
4. Fees, Advertising and Other Costs Ask your potential broker what are the monthly office fees (phone line, copier, fax, website, cubicle/desk space)? Is email or website assistance provided? What type of long-term technology support can a company offer? Does the company provide marketing templates? Does the brokerage belong to a Board/MLS and if so, what are the yearly dues? What is your cost of doing business, your sponsoring brokers role is to guide you to help build your real estate business because that is what this is all about, building a successful business!
5. Values and Core Beliefs As with any business, brokerages will have their own company culture, values and community missions. How is the brokerage engaged with the community? What does the brokerage do to be of service to its clients?
Where Do I Start Looking for a Broker?
When you are looking for a broker, you should start by looking in the community you hope to sell real estate in. You can ask other agents who they work for and the pros and cons of working for the brokerage. Search online for brokers near you and keep your eyes peeled for real estate signs and offices in your community. Give these offices a call and set up a time to meet up and talk with the broker owner or managing broker. Also feel free to just drop by offices in person!
Before diving into the details, let’s get our terms straight.
The Interview Process…the Power is Yours!
Brokers are always looking for new agents to recruit. Most brokers you talk to will be interested in having you on their team. After all, brokers benefit greatly from having people join their brokerage, make sales and split commission with them. For this reason, there is no need to be nervous about interviewing brokers. This is not a typical job interview where you will be scrutinized. In fact, you can be quite “picky” about your choice of brokerage. You are essentially interviewing them, not the other way around. Why not interview several brokers before making your choice? Never say "yes" to the first one you meet, play hard to get! Find the fit that is right for you. But, do not stress about making the “right choice.” You can change brokerages if you need to. Many will use one for their training and switch to building their own brokerage, this can be done in as little as 2 years in New York. You can ask your potential broker what happens to pending commissions and listings if you choose to leave the brokerage. Make sure to ask your broker about the 5 key points outlined above. The interview is the time to ask your broker the important questions. What type of commission split is being offered? What are the values of the company? What fees and costs will be your responsibility? Does the broker have educational or mentor-ship programs?
Can I become a New York Real Estate Broker?
If you want to work toward getting your own broker license, you will need 3,500 “experience points,” take a broker licensing course and have at least two years of experience as a New York Real Estate Salesperson and pass a Real Estate Broker Licensing Exam. Becoming a broker will allow you higher income potential. You will be able to keep more of your commission and can also start your own brokerage with agents who work under you. You can also look forward to being more competitive and expanding your territory. If you invest your time in the broker licensing program, the credits can also be used towards continuing education! Through the Manfred Membership program, the broker licensing course is always 50% off.
Consider Your Brokerage a Resource
Even if you aspire to be a broker yourself one day, use the time you have with a sponsoring broker as a resource and foundation for your new business. You can always learn something from someone who has experience in the field you want to be successful in. Someone with hands on experience can be more valuable to you than lessons from a textbook. Remember, you are starting a business for yourself! Do your research and align yourself with someone you feel comfortable and excited to work with.