Considering a career shift toward real estate? Now may be the perfect time to make your move since the real estate agent job outlook is promising. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates 6% growth in the profession until 2026.
That’s not faster than other growing occupations in the country, but steady growth may be a reason to seize this new career opportunity. Here are a few other reasons why now may be better than ever to take a leap.
What is a Real Estate Agent Career?
The real estate career outlook is strong. And that’s a helpful piece of information to know if you’re considering a move. But what exactly is involved in the role?
Real estate agents are responsible for helping clients buy, rent, and also sell pieces of property. As a real estate agent, you can be involved in one of the most important financial investments individuals and families make.
In order to serve in this role, there are some basic requirements. You must have at least a high school diploma, be 18 years or older, and possess relevant training and licensing.
In order to offer your services in the state where you reside, you must complete a certain number of training hours. The duration of training can vary depending on the state you want to work in. In California, for example, you must complete 135 training hours.
The final step involved in obtaining your license is the licensing exam. This exam is typically broken out into two major sections:
- Federal real estate laws and general rules and concepts
- Real estate laws that pertain specifically to the state
Once you’ve passed this exam, you can look ahead to landing your first official role as a real estate agent.
Qualities That Will Serve You Well
Training and licensing aren’t the only important tools to have. There are some other skills and personality traits that will help you thrive. These include:
- Social and interpersonal skills
- Facility with organization and time management
- Keen judgment
- Ability to solve problems both large and small
If you enjoy and are skilled at interacting with others, have a good business sense, and manage your time well, these strengths will serve you well as a real estate agent.
Salary and Earnings
Real estate agents earn money on commission. That means that they earn a percentage of the fee collected on the sale of a home or other type of property.
According to salary.com the average salary for real estate agents is about $50,000. But this figure definitely depends on aspects like your experience level, the state you live in, and the market in your area.
As of 2017, New York real estate agents earned the highest mean salary: $102,310.
Is it a Good Time to Become a Realtor or Real Estate Agent?
Another aspect to consider when viewing the realtor job outlook is how you’ll be able to grow.
One way to do that is to become a real estate broker. A real estate broker differs from a real estate agent because he or she also has a broker’s license.
In order to pursue this license, you usually have to have several years of experience as a real estate agent. Once you obtain a broker’s license, you also possess a much deeper level of knowledge about all things related to real estate investments and laws.
That means you may be able to take on expanded roles if you’re working at a real estate firm. One possibility includes becoming a managing broker, who is responsible for day-to-day office and operational tasks as well as hiring agents.
Another way to continue growing your skillset is to become a realtor. In order to officially earn this title, you must become a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and have several years of experience under your belt. As of July 2019, there are 1,383,010 members in the NAR.
Membership yields benefits like access to housing market data and the ability to use this respected title. But members also must adhere to strict ethics codes and standards.
Benefits of the Real Estate Job Outlook
The statistics show that real estate agent jobs are plentiful and will trend that way in the future. But there’s another big benefit of the job: flexibility.
Real estate agents should be good at staying on their toes and exercising good judgment, but they also enjoy pluses like an alternative schedule. For some, that may mean more freedom to achieve a better work/life balance.
If you don’t like being confined to an office and enjoy more variation in your days, you’ll likely have that kind of variety on a daily basis.
Another big benefit is that as you gain more experience on the job, you’ll open up opportunities for growth. That could mean earning a broker’s license and more responsibility in the firm you work for.
That can also mean becoming your own boss.
Because of the nature of the job, earning commission versus an annual salary, all real estate agents start as independent contractors in a sense. But as you learn the ropes and from your experience, you may realize the best growth opportunity is setting out on your own.
Learn More About Your Real Estate Agent Job Outlook
If you’re ready to take the plunge toward becoming a real estate agent but still have questions, get in touch with our team. We can fill you in on the latest regarding real estate job growth and the real estate agent job outlook.
Or if you’re considering a different shift like creating your own company, we can help. We’ll help you explore the benefits of working for yourself as a solo real estate agent—and whether it’s right for you.