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If you’re a new realtor in Jacksonville, FL there are many ways to grow your business, but ultimately it boils down to building relationships over the long term. These relationships will be with clients, contractors, decorators, and even property management teams.
Building these relationships is essential to growing your reputation as more than a realtor looking for a commission, but a resource for all things housing. If you’re able to gain the trust of those in the business, they will return that trust with recommendations and referrals, not only helping you to grow your business but sustain it over the long run.
Showcase Your Knowledge and Personality Online
The housing market is between steady and on the rise, but it’s definitely different than it once was. With millennials on the scene, baby boomers looking to downsize, and less trust after the recession, more people are turning to renting than buying. This means as a realtor you have to be more flexible in how you conduct your business.
Your client should look to you as a problem solver, someone with multiple solutions if they aren’t able to sell their home or buy in what was the typical fashion. To do this, you want to show potential clients that you know the housing market inside and out and you have access to those in every faction of housing.
One of the best ways to do this is through your online presence. Even if you’re working for a specific group, being a realtor requires a lot of independence. That’s why you’ll want to make sure that you have a fully functional website and a consistent, unique social media profile. With your website and social media profile you’re able to show what you know through the following mediums:
Blogs – tell the world about your personal experience in the housing market as well as discuss tips and tricks you’ve learned on maintenance, staging a home, open houses and showings. Let yourself brag a little, but keep it informative and show off your knowledge. Your clients will appreciate that you know your stuff.
Pictures – through social media such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter you can show happy clients, homes for sale, and give it a personal flair. Clients trust you to find the best home for them, so give them a little personal information, so they see you as a person and not just someone looking for a commission.
Videos – Much like blog posts, you can do short tutorials on different aspects of the housing market. Though tutorials may seem counter-intuitive, it shows confidence in your abilities to guide a client and act as friend and counselor through the stressful situation of buying or selling a home.
Links to helpful websites – Again, you may think this will work against you, but providing resources is the best way to showcase your knowledge beyond selling and buying properties. You have a specific skill set, yes, but part of your skills is being the best at what you do and recognizing those who can help beyond just the sale of a home.
Create Partnerships Within the Housing Market
Linking to helpful websites can function in your favor in two ways:
- It showcases your knowledge to your clients and builds their confidence in you.
- You can leverage your favor with those whom you’ve made partnerships and link to them as a great resource. This will allow them to return the favor and link back to you!
This second reason highlights just a small way in which you can build trust and lasting relationships with others in the housing market. Being a Jill or Jack of all trades isn’t necessary or worth your while in the current business climate because people have so much more access to those who specialize and perform well in specific tasks.
This access can be overwhelming, so the market has come to rely on recommendations from those they trust. You don’t need to know how to stage, how to build, or how to maintain a property, but knowing the people who do makes you invaluable to your clients and those you recommend.
Key groups to build relationships:
Decorators/Home Staging: If you’re a great sales person with an eye for good taste but not the know-how to put those things together, then partnering with a decorator/home staging group is necessary. You don’t have to be able to decorate yourself, just be able to recognize what you like and let that person put their creative skills to work for you.
Contractors: Some realtors choose to grow their business by flipping houses. This can be done on your own, but to make money on it you want to flip several homes which takes a lot of time and effort. Establishing relationships with contractors frees up your time and gives them consistent work. Furthermore, you can recommend these contractors to those who buy homes from you, or sellers that need repairs done on their property before going on the market.
Property Management Teams: Though your main focus as a realtor is selling properties a property management team may be useful if you:
- Expand your scope to renting homes
- Have a client who is needing to sell, but the timing isn’t right
Many realtors have found a small side business investing in vacation rental properties but managing those properties can take up a lot of the time and energy you need to be spending on your primary goal. Working with a property management team means not having to deal with rent collection, property maintenance, or tenant issues.
Outside of this side venture is the prospect that all realtors face, though: a less than ideal housing market for selling your client’s home. Having to short sell a property is tricky and is more of a way out rather than a lucrative move for you or the client. Instead, being able to refer a client to a property management team allows them to cover a large chunk of the expenses on the home, not have to pay closing costs on top of not selling the house for what’s owed and continue to build equity in their original investment.
A referral program through a property management team like Green River Property Management has a short term pay off and a long-term guarantee of a future listing. Once you’ve referred a client and they've signed for services, you as the realtor gain a flat fee for the referral. You also receive Green River’s guarantee that you will have the rights to the listing when the client is ready to sell.
One of the best ways things about becoming a realtor is the freedom and independence of the work. This independence works out in your favor when it comes to building business relationships among those who cover other aspects of the housing market. Both partners have to prove their trust-worthiness with each new client or venture – neither of you owes the other. This is especially true of your relationship with a property management team like Green River Property Management. If they don’t meet a level of excellence, they know they can’t count on you for future referrals, making them work hard for you.
Refer a client to Green River Property Management and start building a great relationship for you and your clients.