Your Ultimate Guide to Starting a Career in Real Estate

By Ciprian Morariu Published: March 19, 2024

Guide to Starting a Career in Real Estate

A career in real estate is like a dream come true for many, especially due to the high pay, rewarding career opportunities, and the freedom to be your boss. 

If you are considering starting a career in real estate, congratulations on making the first step of many toward living a life of exciting challenges! 

On average, real estate agents in the USA earn a base salary of $50k exclusive of commissions.

Did you know that the top 10% of real estate brokers in the US earn as much as $110K in a year? Imagine the joy of earning a handsome salary combined with the satisfaction of helping people buy and sell real estate.  

As fulfilling and rewarding a career in real estate is, making it to the list of selected few is easier said than done. 

You need training, education, and a step-by-step approach to achieving your goal of becoming a part of the industry. 

If you are wondering where exactly to start from, this article will help you. We have put together an in-depth guide to plan your entry into the world of real estate. 

After reading through this, you will know what it takes to become a successful real estate professional, irrespective of where you are located and what your background is. 

Benefits of a Career in Real Estate

Now before you set your foot on a real estate agent career path, it is important to understand the benefits of working in the industry. 

The world of real estate is varied with many different roles, career paths, and job profiles such as real estate agent, real estate broker, home appraiser, and mortgage officer among many others. 

On the whole, the industry offers a plethora of benefits which are worth discussing below:

1. High earning potential: 

Real estate is one of the highest-paying professions in the country. Moreover, your earning potential depends entirely on your hard work and effort. The more you work, the more earning opportunities you can find. It is possible to become a highly-paid real estate agent within a few years’ worth of work experience.

2. Job flexibility: 

One of the biggest reasons why a career in real estate is preferred is because of the job flexibility it offers. Agents can set their working hours and decide when and how much time they want to work. Unlike a traditional career, real estate does not require working 9-5 as a standard job. You can put in the hours at your convenience and still manage work life balance. 

3. Helping people:

As a real estate professional, homeowners and homebuyers will seek your advice and recommendations for making some of the most important financial and emotional decisions of their lives. You will work with them to help them buy, sell, or lease properties and it will be your responsibility to guide and help them through different stages of the real estate transaction.

4. Freedom: 

Imagine being your boss and working on your terms! If that sounds like a dream come true, then a career in real estate is calling you. Many skilled agents, brokers, and appraisers work independently and open their firms. The ability to work for your own goals and sales targets is priceless and this is why freedom is a great advantage. 

5. Excitement: 

In real estate, there is no dull day. After all, your job responsibilities will be varied and diverse, leading you to juggle different tasks and activities every day. Be it a property visit or an event, you will always be looking forward to the next adventure. From meeting new people and working with like-minded professionals, there’s something for everyone. 

All That You Need To Know To Become A Real Estate Agent

If you are a resident of North Carolina and are planning to enter the real estate industry, then we have put together the exact steps you need to take. 

Research the Real Estate Industry

Like most industries, the world of real estate goes far and wide. There are several career paths, rules, regulations and guidelines in the industry. 

Real estate has been around for more than a few decades and is one of the oldest industries in the business world. 

Before diving into a career, you must be familiar with the ins and outs of the trade, how a real estate transaction works, what are the different types of properties, and understand the local markets. 

To acquire knowledge about the real estate industry, reach out to experienced agents and know about their experience in this field.   

Complete Required Education and Training

Education is the foundation for building a thriving career in the real estate industry. If you are a complete beginner, focus on prioritizing your education as a must-have. 

Even if you are switching jobs to join real estate, it is good to have completed a minimum level of training and pre-licensing coursework to get familiar with the industry. 

Real estate is a diverse and demanding industry with its own set of rules, regulations, laws, and guidelines. Due to its ever-evolving nature, keeping up with the industry trends and market updates is a must to succeed. 

This is where completing formal education and obtaining certifications can help you stay ahead of the curve and stay competitive. 

Appear For And Crack The Real Estate Exam For A License 

When it comes to starting a career in real estate, obtaining a state-approved license is the most crucial step to building a successful career. 

While obtaining a bachelor's degree might be optional, getting your agent or broker’s license is mandatory for anyone who wants to legally take part in the buying, selling, and leasing of real estate. 

To obtain a license, you must first pass the state licensing exam by scoring the minimum passing percentage. 

The requirements and qualification criteria might vary depending on your state but most states in the country require aspiring real estate agents and brokers to take and clear the licensing exam. 

Passing the exam might seem like a monumental task but if you study well and equip yourself with the knowledge of the industry fundamentals, it is an achievable goal. 

Choose a Brokerage and Apply for a License

Once you have passed the licensing exam, find a broker to sponsor you. Now, you will be awarded with an active real estate license.  

Join Professional Associations and Networks

To succeed in a highly competitive field like real estate, you will need more than just education and a license. 

Successful real estate professionals are proactive to networking with industry professionals and joining associations. 

Your career will involve working with a diverse group of real estate professionals so it is apt if you spend time on building relationships and expanding your network. 

Attending local and national events, conferences and being an active member of real estate communities is a must for aspiring real estate agents, realtors, and brokers, 

Tips to Become a Successful Real Estate Agent

Develop Strong Communication Skills

If you are starting on the real estate agent career path, then good communication skills are going to be your best ally. 

Real estate is all about sales and relationships, and the foundation for both is fluent and confident communication. 

Polishing your communication will get your career to greater heights, as it helps to communicate your ideas clearly and create a strong impression on clients. 

Strong communication virtues like language fluency, tact, clarity, empathy, and conflict resolution are just some of the soft skills which  successful agents are known for. 

Build a Professional Network

Your job as a real estate professional involves linking up with many others in this field. Fellow professionals include other real estate brokers, home inspectors, and appraisers. 

It is thus important to develop a robust network of industry professionals and forge strong relationships with them. You can spread the word about your job at industry events, meetups, and conferences.  

There is always a demand for real estate agents and meeting other brokers and realtors in network events will get you references to generate business. 

Market Yourself and Your Listings

If you haven’t figured it out by now, here’s another tip to become a successful real estate agent - learn to be a good salesperson for yourself first and foremost.

With more than a million real estate agents in the US, the competition can be stiff out there. To stand out from the competition, you need to focus on building a personal brand. 

Marketing your skills and expertise is the way to go for attracting new clients and establishing deeper relationships with the existing ones. 

Additionally, you must also learn how to market your listings and use online and offline mediums to generate interest from clients and investors. 

Stay Updated on Market Trends and Regulations

Real estate is a fast-paced, dynamic, and ever-evolving industry. It comprises a wide array of rules, regulations, and general guidelines. 

You must keep yourself abreast of the current guidelines and regulations to stay compliant. 

Be it at the state or the federal level, keeping up-to-date with the latest laws and regulations for real estate professionals is a must. 

Furthermore, the markets change quickly and due to many internal and external factors, there can be significant opportunity costs for inaction. 

If you want to build a successful, thriving career in real estate, you should invest time and effort in learning about the latest developments and emerging trends in the industry.