Choosing a real estate brokerage won’t become clear from simply viewing real estate company websites. The best sources come from impartial business advice sites rather than real estate brokerages themselves. Getting advice from a neutral knowledgeable business success advice expert prevails over real estate brokerages seeking you’re joining them.
The Fits Small Business site provides lots of sound business advice for all sorts of professions including real estate. One of their recent articles provides tips for “Choosing a real estate brokerage to work for”.
Their first tip involves selecting between a national franchise, a boutique brokerage, and a virtual brokerage. Fits Small Business compares these three options as follows:
National Franchise Real Estate Brokerage
The franchise broker is part of a national chain of brokerages. Many of them are merely a franchise of a larger chain. Similar to owning a Burger King or an Herbal Life franchise.
One problem with this type of 100% commission model is the requirement to pay a “franchise fee” to the national headquarters. Are franchise fees really worth it?
Another problem exists with the territory limits assigned to each franchise. You can’t have a McDonalds too close to another McDonalds. Bad for business for both franchises. So, each franchise operates within an established territory. While this may work for selling burgers, it may not work so well with a real estate agent licensed for an entire state, like California. The freedom to operate within an entire state means more opportunities to gain commissions statewide rather than a limited territory.
Another drawback working for a national real estate brokerage franchise is their size. New agents especially find them more impersonal with less value placed on individual development. Agents tend to get lost in the crowd belonging to a national franchise.
Boutique Real Estate Brokerage
The exact opposite exists with boutique real estate brokerages. The mere fact they are much smaller than a huge national franchise means greater individual support. After all, the broker of a boutique real estate firm’s success depends on the productivity of the fewer agents. Therefore, boutique brokers tend to spend more time coaching and developing newer agents.
Every 100% commission based business for any agent depends upon good leads for success. Less competition for leads increases success. Boutique real estate brokerages tend to let any available agent help walk-ins and answer the phone. Often, more experienced agents let newer agents handle the majority of new leads and split the 100% commission with them.
Boutique brokerages tend to experience more teamwork amongst their agents than national franchises. Boutique brokers encourage a more cooperative office environment.
More flexibility and less red tape found in boutique brokerages than national franchises. Corporate office headquarters lay down the rules and regulations regarding conformity more than boutiques. Waiting for company policy from a headquarters in another state takes much longer than a boutique brokerage. Big decisions occur quicker with a boutique broker than with a national franchise.
Creative marketing encouraged more by boutique brokers. Since national franchise corporate headquarters lay down the guidelines for advertising and marketing. Boutique 100% commission agents possess more creative control over their own brand than with a national franchise.
Virtual Real Estate Brokerages
Besides national franchises and boutique brokerages with physical offices and facilities, virtual brokerages have recently become an option for experienced independent 100% commission agents.
SAAS (Software-as-a-Service) found in real estate software along with online advertising allows virtual brokerages to thrive. Not paying office expenses allows virtual brokerages to offer attractive commission splits like 100% to their agents.
Agents of virtual brokerages work from home and rely on the convenience of their computers. Obviously, offering more flexibility than national franchise brokerages and some boutique brokerages.
Other advantages of working at a virtual brokerage include no desk fees, often lower monthly fees, usually better tech tools, and more independence. No weekly sales meetings, obligated office social outings, and optional training sessions allow a virtual agent to be his or her own boss. Many agents find this liberating.
The disadvantages of a virtual brokerage include the loneliness of full independence. With no office to visit and socialize, no parties to attend and network, no office culture, and no support from other agents, tends to create loneliness. The pure independence of working on your own doesn’t work for everyone. After a hard day’s work returning home to complain to your significant other just doesn’t feel the same as with an office environment and support.
The Advantages of Office Support
Choosing real estate brokerage should also include office support. Independent loners don’t need office support. On the other hand, a real estate broker for 100% commission agents providing office support has its advantages.
Big Block Realty is one of San Diego’s largest boutique real estate brokerages with over 800 agents on 100% commission structures. We offer our 100% commission agents the following office support services:
- Agent Concierge who helps our agents with almost anything like making reservations at a first-class restaurant for business meetings.
- Broker Support always available with just a call, email, or a visit away.
- Real Estate Attorney in-house and accessible by a call, email, or visit for extra insight.
- Multiple Office Locations for free access to conference rooms, workstations, and more!
- Training Classes including contracts, internet marketing, legal amongst others
- Transaction Support
- Social Media and Technology Support; and
- Marketing and Lead Generation Support
Truly unique office support services.
Choosing a real estate brokerage becomes easier when you compare our three 100% commission plans and office support with other real estate broker. We also have a great mentorship program for those beginning there real estate careers.
Want to learn more? Read how “100% Commission Real Estate Brokerages Are Not Created Equal”.
Contact Us to learn more about our unique office support and our three 100% commission plans to find the right fit for you.
Steven Rich, MBA – Guest Blogger
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