News & Media
Woman showing her muscle
Layla Bird/Gettyimages.com

30 Things to Do in Your First 30 Days as a New Realtor

Get your new real estate career started off right, and set yourself up for success with this advice from top brokers and other industry experts.

When Tansy Moon transitioned out of the mortgage business into a real estate career, she was already familiar with the industry and the Atlantic Beach area.

To distinguish herself, she created a branded approach—inspired by her two young daughters.

Every time Moon held an open house or a listing, she’d snap photos or videos of her kids jumping in front of the sign in the yard. Using the hashtag #supercute, she’d share these images on social media.

Her broker, Christy Budnick, recalls this anecdote to illustrate how an agent can achieve quick success in the business.

“Tansy sold over $10 million her first year using this memorable approach,” says Budnick, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Network Realty in Jacksonville. “And she was the queen of follow-up! Her clients were always talking about how Tansy touches base with them.”

While there’s no “one right way” to achieve success as a new agent, you can hit the ground running. Florida Realtor spoke with four top Florida brokers and other experts who shared their best tips on how you can crush it in your first 30 days.

Set a solid foundation

1. Remember what you learned in real estate school about having 6 to 12 months of cash reserves? Take this seriously. —Cynthia Benchick, principal broker/vice president, Charles Rutenberg Realty, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

2. Buy and use a customer relationship management (CRM) program. Also, make sure it has a mobile version. It’s the key to efficiently building your database and managing your marketing and advertising campaigns. —Benchick

3. Work with your broker or manager to identify your goals in terms of income and lifestyle. Find your “why.” From here, build your business plan. Identify the actions that will help you meet or exceed your goals. —Larry Kendall, founder, Ninja Selling

4. Get all the tools you need to succeed, such as a laptop or tablet, smartphone, professional car, business cards and other marketing materials. —Stas Matias, broker/co-owner, Erin Catron & Company Real Estate, Punta Gorda, Florida

5. Establish a professional image by writing a bio and getting quality headshots taken. Use these to create full profiles on LinkedIn and other social media platforms, and on real estate sites like Realtor.com and Zillow. —Matias

6. Decide how you want to structure your business. Work with a local attorney to form an entity such as a PA (professional association) or PLLC (professional limited liability corporation), then send your application to the Florida Real Estate Commission (FREC) to move your license to that entity. —Jo Ann Koontz, attorney and CPA, Koontz & Associates, Sarasota, Florida

7. Once you establish your entity, obtain a Tax ID Number and open a bank account and credit or debit account for the PA or PLLC. —Koontz

Spread the word

8. Build your database. Enter at least 100 contacts into it your first 30 days. Include everyone that knows, loves and trusts you who can help influence and mold your career. Then find ways to stay in touch. —Budnick

9. Create a Mailchimp or iContact newsletter account (it’s free) and add all the names and emails from your new database so you can send them a monthly informational newsletter. —Buildingbetteragents.com

10. Build a farm of about 200 to 300 residences. Your neighborhood may be a good place to start. Use a program such as Remine to gather names and addresses and add them to your database. —Paul Saperstein, broker-associate, eXp Realty, Delray Beach, Florida

11. Plan to give away at least two business cards every day. Put yourself in situations where you’ll meet new people, whether it’s at PTA meetings, Rotary breakfasts or the grocery store. Get out of your comfort zone to have relevant real estate conversations.
—Budnick

12. Build a buyers’ list. Volunteer to be a model sitter at a new-home sales center. Use a buyer interview sheet to ask questions about what buyers are looking for. Or get listings from a new construction site. The prospects might have to sell their old home (offer to list it for them) before they buy the new one. —Matias

13. Rather than send out notes to your sphere talking about your new career in real estate, talk about what you’re currently working on and the latest market update. Take the emphasis off of your inexperience and talk about what you do know instead. —Saperstein

New Realtor? Here's How to Build a Robust Contact List

As a new agent, the first basic steps that lead to closed sales include developing a list of contacts, expanding that list and working that list! Next, commit to contacting these people 12 times a year and set a realistic goal for the income you wish to achieve. Watch the video for more tips.

Know your local market

14. Attend homeowner association meetings  and wear your badge to become known as the neighborhood Realtor. Be prepared with additional business cards, comparative market analysis (CMA) flyers and county market information. —Benchick

15. Educate yourself on the market you plan to serve. If you’re selling condos or new-construction communities, build a relationship with the sales teams at these locations. For resales, visit as many open houses as possible. Schedule visits to some vacant listings to get a better feel of the area, construction and amenities these properties offer. —Matias

16. Ask agents in your office if you can help host an open house on their listings. This gives you the opportunity to learn about the market and get face-to-face interaction with potential buyers right away. —Matias

17. Many people start out with their sights set on million-dollar home sales, but one of the best ways to get to know your local market is by starting out in rentals. Whether you work with a landlord to find new tenants or work with prospective tenants to find a perfect apartment, you’ll earn money, gain experience, learn the area and get to know people who may soon turn into buyers. —Saperstein

18. Pick a new neighborhood and drive by homes for sale in the MLS. This will help you get to know different areas of town. —Buildingbetteragents.com

19. Call five people from your database each day. Invite them to coffee and reconnect. Offer to give them a market update. Use the call to update your database with missing information. —Matias

Connect with other pros

20. Board participation provides the best agent-to-agent networking! Work together with leadership, committees, charitable foundations and community outreach projects. —Benchick

21. Develop relationships with at least two vendors, such as lenders and
title companies. They’ve got free
custom-branded marketing materials that can help you market your business and properties. —Matias

22. Support your community. Participate in Chamber of Commerce events and attend ribbon-cutting
ceremonies for small businesses. —Matias

23. Find a mentor in your local office. Then, shadow that agent on listing appointments and buyer showings. This person can be a great resource. —Budnick

Take your education to the next level

24. Plan to attend the annual Florida Realtors Convention & Trade Expo. You’ll find some of the best education, technology and governance information under one roof. —Benchick

25. Studying your trade doesn’t end with earning your license. To thrive, read articles and preview property hot sheets daily. Become the local expert.
—Budnick

26. Learn all about the Graduate Realtor® Institute (GRI) program. This designation is a powerful knowledge tool to attract and build new business. It can pay for itself in no time. —Matias

27. Take a class that helps you understand real estate contracts. This is vital so you don’t create a legal issue unknowingly. Buyers and sellers want to know they made the right choice in working with you. Being able to answer their questions about the contract puts them at ease. Also, use the free Florida Realtors Legal Hotline if you have any contract questions. —Matias

28. Boost your marketing skills. Learn how to use all the free tools out there (such as Canva and Photofy) to create free fliers, videos and photos. —Matias

29. Learn from the pros. Tap into the wisdom of successful people (in real estate and other industries) by listening to podcasts, reading articles, gleaning tips in online forums and watching videos. Whether it’s Darren Hardy or Tom Ferry, plenty of pros share their insights that spark ideas for success. —Matias

30. One of the best ways to market yourself is by developing a specialty or niche. Check out certifications and designations, many of which only take a few hours to earn, then become an expert in working with seniors or helping military families relocate, for example. This type of specialization improves your marketing message and helps you build a reputation quickly. —Saperstein

With these tips in hand, you’re ready to kickstart your new real estate career.  #

Lisa Beach is an Orlando-based freelance writer.