Making Your Way in a Competitive Industry: Is There Hope for Today’s Young Real Estate Agents?
There are both advantages and disadvantages to being a young real estate agent. Obvious drawbacks include the difficulty of gaining a foothold in an industry which, in many markets, is dominated by a handful of established players. Add to that the fact that a youthful appearance and demeanor may subtly prejudice clients against you, and it’s easy to see why a large percentage of new agents fail to break through.
However, being young can be an advantage, too. As a young real estate agent:
- You have a better command of technology. From social media to sales forecasting, young real estate agents are more naturally adept with the tools that drive success in the real estate industry today. Taking advantage of these technologies and using them meaningfully will give you an important competitive edge going forward.
- You have a natural connection with the next generation of homebuyers. As more millennials are graduating and buying homes, there will be an increased need for realtors who speak their language and understand their priorities. Being young gives you an automatic in with this growing segment of the home buying population.
- You can afford to fail. Being young is all about making mistakes and learning from them. Almost all successful entrepreneurs experience at least one failure before they hit it big. Real estate agents are no different — being young makes it easier to take risks and experiment until you hit on the winning formula that will take your career to the next level.
How to Leverage Youth for Real Estate Success
So, what can you do to make the most of your youth and position yourself for long-term success in the real estate industry? Here are some tips from the pros:
- Network, network, network. In the real estate industry, getting your name out is the most important part of building a career. As noted above, you’ll have a built-in advantage when marketing yourself to new homebuyers. But don’t neglect the importance of connections within your industry, as well. When you attend conferences, training sessions or social events, don’t treat other agents as a threat. Instead, look for ways you can help each learn and grow together.
- Break with tradition. Successful innovators aren’t afraid to break the mold. As a young agent, you’re not bound to anyone’s preconceived notions of who you are as a professional — in other words; you are free to reinvent yourself and try different approaches to building a reputation and career. Be creative, have fun and never stop looking for new ways to serve your clients better.
- Find a mentor. You have to know the rules to know how and when to break them. Find someone willing to mentor a young agent and learn from their experiences. Don’t be afraid to work with a brokerage that’s less glamorous, or pays a smaller commission, if there are people there who are genuinely eager to share their wisdom and teach you the tricks of the trade.
The most important thing to remember as a young real estate agent is to stay positive. Your attitude will determine how people perceive you and, ultimately, whether or not your career will succeed. Remember — confidence, competence and great customer service know no age limits.