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Op amps: to dual or not to dual? (Part 2 of 2)

8/20/2015 3:18:01 PM
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Real estate salespeople, and other licensees who are required to work for and under the umbrella of a designated broker, are often referred to as real estate agents. In legal language, the term "agent" refers to the strictly defined relationship between a real estate salesperson and the buyers and sellers with whom he or she conducts business. An agent is an individual who is authorized and consents to represent the interests of another person. As an agent, you act to assist people through the process of buying, selling and renting land, homes and other properties.

In addition to meeting licensing requirements and having a comprehensive understanding of pertinent real estate laws, real estate agents have a long list of responsibilities. Real estate agents typically do the following:

Advise clients on mortgages, market conditions and pricing
Advise sellers on how they can make their homes more attractive to buyers
Compare properties to determine fair and competitive market prices
Generate lists of appropriate properties for buyers based on their price range and needs
Guide buyers and sellers through the transaction process
Manage lists of contacts
Mediate negotiations between buyers and sellers
Prepare and submit all required paperwork, including various contracts
Present all purchase offers to sellers for consideration
Promote properties through advertising, listing services (such as MLS) and open houses
Show properties to prospective buyers
Solicit potential clients to buy, sell and rent properties
Stay current with real estate laws and trends
Work nights and/or weekends to accommodate clients' needs
Here, we take a look at a few considerations that will help you fulfill your agent responsibilities, while advancing your career as a real estate agent.

Sphere of Influence
One way to build contacts and generate leads is through a real estate sphere of influence (SOI) business model. This networking strategy focuses on generating real estate leads through the people you already know, including your family, friends, classmates, business associates, sports team members, and even vendors (like your doctor and hair stylist). The best way to keep track of all the names and contact information is in one place, such as in a spreadsheet program (such as Excel), your email's contacts database or with commercial software.

Once you have established your SOI database, it is easy to add contacts as you meet people – at community events, thru mutual acquaintances or by any other means. The more people you have on your list, the larger your SOI and the better your chances for a referral. Plan on sending out a "new agent" announcement – through the mail, phone, email, text or any combination catered to each type of contact – when you begin your career, as well as periodic updates and shout-outs to keep your SOI thinking about you and your real estate services.

Developing a Professional Image
Developing and maintaining a professional presence is vital to your success as a real estate agent. Your image is projected through your:

Appearance – tidy clothing, hair, accessories, makeup. Should be appropriate for your office and local market. Avoid perfume/cologne and revealing clothing (i.e., nothing too tight, too short or too low cut).
Face-to-face meetings – good eye contact, positive body language. Strive to be attentive, engaging and courteous.
Marketing and advertising materials –quality photos and accurate, compelling text. Should be free of grammatical and spelling mistakes.
Phone calls – articulate, engaging and courteous.
Web presence – carefully planned Web site, engaging social media. Should be free of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.
Written communications – well-written letters, emails and texts free of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.
It is important to note that any presence you have on the Internet – whether for your business or personal life – lasts forever and can easily find its way to your potential clients. Therefore, it is judicious to work toward a professional image both in and out of your real estate career.

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