Consider becoming a real estate agent
By Heidi Thiel~
Many people look forward to retirement. Many may use this opportunity to travel, while others may choose to relax. However, some people may prefer to continue working even through retirement.
If you are thinking about going back to work, consider becoming a real estate agent. There’s a low barrier to entry, and older adults may offer unique insights and skills younger agents may not be able to provide.
Intrigued? Here are a few more reasons why it may be a good fit for you.
Flexible Schedule: A great perk of becoming a real estate agent is creating your own schedule. You can forget about the 40-hour work week and customize a schedule that fits your lifestyle. What’s more, most open house events take place during the weekends or in the evenings, leaving your weekdays freer!
You Can Make Good Money: Even part-time, you can make a good income as a real estate agent. On average, a real estate agent earns $36 an hour, which is around $70,000 a year. Keep in mind, these rates may vary depending on your location.
You Stay Connected with the Community: Since real estate is a career that requires connections and in-person interaction, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to stay connected with the community. You’ll also meet new people and make new connections.
You Can Start After Just a Few Weeks of Training: Most people become real estate agents within six months! This process includes training such as classes, on-site mentorship, and examinations.
Retirees and Seniors Have Unique Advantages: Real estate is a great career opportunity for all. However, did you know that the average age of real estate agents skews older? Here’s why.
Personal Experience: Unlike most younger agents, older adults have personal experience with buying and selling multiple homes and can offer insight into a variety of situations.
Unique Perspective: Seniors and retirees can specialize in senior housing communities because they’re better able to empathize with these types of buyers and renters. Older agents are better able to take their older clients’ unique needs into account. Most younger agents don’t have this unique perspective.
Knowledge and Confidence: Successful agents need to have a thorough understanding of the local market and history. If you’ve lived in a place for a long time, you’ll know more than someone who just moved there. Agents also need confidence and emotional stability. Older adults typically have the self-esteem necessary to succeed, here.
How You Can Become a Real Estate Agent
Ready to dive into the world of real estate? Here are the steps for your next career.
Step 1: Educate Yourself.
If you don’t already have a thorough knowledge of your real estate market, start learning. Research your local market’s history, statistics, and neighborhoods — to start — to better understand the area. This will help you meet the needs of your clients.
Additionally, real estate agents need specific tools and technology to perform in a competitive market. Smartphones and laptops are essential, since the business of real estate is conducted mostly online. With these, you can communicate with your clients, post new listings, advertise your business, and more. Don’t forget about brushing up on social media skills; it’s a great way to reach new clients and network with other real estate agents.
Additionally, educate yourself on the overall real estate career path and the day-to-day life of a real estate agent. Agents do far more than simply showing houses. Prepare to learn more details about the life of an agent.
Step 2: Study for and Take the Real Estate Agent Exam.
You need to pass your state’s real estate exam. Part of this includes:
- 60-130 hours of pre-licensing classes
- Passing the pre-licensing exam
- Registering under a broker
Keep in mind: If you don’t pass your state exam the first time, you can always retake it. However, it helps tremendously to take practice tests before taking the state exam to better prepare for the real thing.
Step 3: Activate Your License.
Once you’ve passed your state exam, you’ll need to pay a fee to activate your state’s real estate board license. Once completed, you can officially practice as a real estate agent.
This does not make you a “realtor.” You will still need to join your local chapter of the National Association of Realtors, which involves a yearly membership fee and adherence to a code of ethics.
Step 4: Join a Brokerage.
To practice as a real estate agent, you will also need to join a brokerage in your area.
Find a brokerage that fits your needs and lifestyle. Reach out to see if they are searching for new agents. There are both local and national brokerages, so, if you struggle to find one in your area, expand your search to find one that best suits you.
Real estate is a great option, whether you are looking to work through retirement for some extra cash or start a brand-new career.
For more information on becoming a real estate agent, check out RentSpree’s informative guide to becoming a real estate agent as a second career.