Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Day in the Life of a Realtor: Preparing for the Hurricane

I always smile when someone tells me that they want to be a Realtor.  I think back 5 years ago...when I said the same thing, and got my license. 

Most people think that Realtors float around town, attend fun events, see nice homes, and work with nice clients that effortlessly pour into the office, on a regular basis.  We put a sign in a yard, show a buyer a house, show up to closing, and receive our paychecks.  It's easy right?

This assumption can not be farther from the truth! Well...part of the assumption is right...sometimes we do float around town, attend fun events, and see nice homes.  :)

But seriously, the truth is, real estate is nothing like what I thought it would be.  It is 100 times more challenging,  100 times more difficult, 100 times more expensive, and 100 times more rewarding than I could have imagined. 

I hope you enjoy reading about my experiences and adventures!

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Preparing for the Hurricane
 
Today I was still not feeling well;  I have been sick for the past few days.  Sick or not, my clients still have homes to sell and need information on properties.  Tuesday's are my seller update days.  This is when I update my sellers on market conditions, progress with the marketing of their home, check up on feedback from showings that have occurred in the past week, and discuss concerns and questions.

The busy real estate season is almost upon us!  Spring is on its way!  I am doing my best to get as organized as possible before the "hurricane" hits!

Morning:

Normally, I go to downtown New Braunfels each day and work from my office.  Today, since I am sick, I decided to work from home in the morning.  I check and sort email, follow up on any lingering issues from the evening before, and start my lead generation to get new business.

Lunch:

I went into town around lunch time to attend the Realtor open house/luncheon of one of my office colleagues.  The home that was open today is a beautiful custom home in Rock Wall Ranch.  I feel that it is important to attend these events to show support for my fellow agents, gain information on the home, and provide feedback to the sellers.  These events are usually fun - Realtors LOVE a free lunch and love to see nice homes.  It's also nice to see my Realtor friends and colleagues.  It is important to have a good working relationship with other Realtors.  Yes, we are in competition with each other for business, but we also have to work together to sell homes and make transactions happen. 

While I was in the area, I did a drive-by on an expired listing to check out the curb appeal, location, and neighborhood.  Most of my sellers are home owners that contact me when their home did not sell the first (and sometimes second) time with a previous agent.  I am meeting the owner of this particular home on Friday and will be running a full market analysis to see why this home did not sell and help the seller prepare a strategy to sell the home this Spring.  Its hard to get a full picture of the home, and why it did not sell, by only seeing information and pictures on the MLS. 

Afternoon:

After my hill country excursion, I went back to the office to start preparing for appointments that are scheduled for later this week.  Another expired listing home owner called to set an appointment.  This time the home is located in Canyon Lake.

I started feeling bad again so I left to work from home for the rest of the day.  On my way home, I did a drive by for tomorrow morning's listing appointment.  From my couch and lap top, I spent the rest of the day, and part of the evening sending email updates to sellers, and preparing several market analysis (and blogging). 

Hopefully I will feel better tomorrow...I will be BUSY for the rest of the week!

Today was the calm before the hurricane...several of my sellers have had multiple showings on their homes and I have three potential new listings this week.  Things are about to get really busy and it will be a crazy Spring season. 

Real estate moves in waves.  January 2012 was the busiest month of my career.  I took 4 listings, closed my first short sale transaction, negotiated and closed a very fast transaction for an investment property, and negotiated a contract on another one of my listings (it closed as well).  After working 16 hour days for a month...the past few weeks have been relatively slow...a MUCH needed break to re-group and prepare for the next wave. 

Within the madness, I discovered that I desperately need help.  There is too much work for one person to handle (which is not a bad thing!).  In addition to my current business, I am also working on structuring my team so that some of the administrative work can be handled by someone else.  Currently, I have someone that works with me part-time, in the evenings.  We are working on expanding her responsibilities from prospecting to marketing listings and paperwork/file maintenance.  This expansion and training takes most of my weekends, and evenings.  GROWTH IS GOOD!!

After being in real estate for 5 years, I am beginning to understand the patterns of the business.  Spring is the start of "hurricane season" for real estate and the season will extend until Fall, where it will slow down again during the holidays.  Lots of homes need to be sold, and a lot of buyers will be out and about!





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