Understanding Volume Real Estate

Volume real estate transactions often baffle the average agent. In fact, the average agent is lucky to close 20 transactions in a year, which equals only 1.5 transactions per month. And yet, it would be highly unlikely that there is a need to spend 160 hours on any transaction. This stems from a lack of processes, no boundaries when it comes to time with a client and a lack of common sense about what it takes to work with too many clients at one time.

It is a fact that in the traditional world of real estate, many agents believe that you should make client calls until you can not reach the person that you are calling. That could be midnight and sometimes later if you are negotiating a deal. Why?

This misunderstanding of the profession leaves the agent using their time inefficiently, with no boundaries and often you hear that the agent is burned out. They need a vacation. But oh no, the agent can not take a vacation, they have a client that needs them. And this is the agent that is lucky to do 20 transactions per year. Yes, it yielded them into the Million-Dollar Club, but it has not yielded them an income that is sustainable or a life that is balanced.

What is Volume Real Estate?

In a nutshell, volume real estate is working with so many clients that if one flakes out on you and does not sell or buy a house; it does not effect your performance or income. Simply they are not needed. Volume real estate is a conscious decision to accept as many clients as you can and that you will figure out if you need help with them later, while you are in the game, not just thinking about the game.

Volume real estate recognizes that you must be marketing all the time, not just when you decide that you need more clients because you have just closed your pipeline or it has dried up. A volume real estate person overbooks himself or herself knowing that they have team members that can help out if needed. Volume real estate is where you make money that you didn’t even know was possible because you have a process that is smooth and has very little or no flaws.

Volume real estate has boundaries that say when you close for business, when you re-open for business and ultimately this will allow you to go on vacation. Volume real estate is the wave of the future if the wave is not already on us. The question is, will you go under with the wave or will you ride the wave?

How Do You Do Volume Real Estate

  1. Learn from someone who has perfected volume real estate. Someone who carries hundreds of listings at a time, not tens of listings or less.
  2. Stay away from naysayers and others who don’t want anyone to succeed, including themselves.
  3. Understand that you can never service someone in real estate, you can only support them to make a decision that is best for them. You have no power.
  4. Stop feeling worried for people who have gotten themselves into financial messes.
  5. Stop feeling guilty for charging people too much money and charge less – the real fee that it costs you to do business. In other words, instead of clubbing 20 people to death for your annual revenue, just pinprick 2,000. You’ll make more money and your clients will save more individually, allowing them to accept more offers, quicker.
  6. Make yourself referable so that your clients can actually refer you to others.
  7. Build processes that keep everyone on the same page including the clients.
  8. Stop over servicing people to feel good about yourself.
  9. Stop underestimating that people can’t do things for themselves like fill their own flyer box.
  10. Stop overcharging clients because you don’t have enough clients – get more.
  11. Stop over-promising clients and delivering less results than promised.
  12. Stop over-promising clients and resent your over-promise.
  13. Set boundaries for your personal life that you are willing to enforce and let those spread into your business life.

Recognize that real estate needs for sellers and buyers have changed and get on the band wagon of people who are making millions while you are making less than you imagined or feel you deserve. Don’t just make enough to pay your bills, make real money.

The 5 Most Effective Real Estate Marketing Tools

Ask ten different real estate agents what the best tools for marketing are and you will get ten different lists. So perhaps the title of this article should have “in Brandon’s experience” tacked onto the end.

What I’ve created below is a list of what I feel are the best ways for real estate agents to promote themselves (and their listings) in the modern economy.

Item #1 – An Effective Website

These days, a real estate agent without a website is an agent who will lose a lot of potential business. Aside from referrals (see item #5), most home buyers and sellers find their real estate agents online.

Maybe they do a Google search for agents in their area. Maybe they stumble across an online article that links back to the agent’s site. Or maybe they “stumble across” the agent’s website when researching the local real estate market. But for any of this to be possible, a real estate agent needs a solid website filled with useful content, tools and resources.

Here are some of the things you should build into your real estate website:

  • Listing data of some kind
  • Consumer education resources
  • Plenty of original, keyword-rich content
  • Lead generation systems
  • Regular updates, perhaps through a blog
  • Basic website usability and organization

Secret to Success: The number of real estate websites has exploded over the last few years. You need to work hard to make your website better than those of your competitors — more organized, more informative, and better designed. It takes a lot of time, energy and money to get it right, but the rewards are ever lasting.

Item #2 – Internet Visibility / Web Presence

A few years ago, an agent could publish a 5-page website to generate business. People would eventually find the site, because there weren’t many of them competiting for attention. Obviously, that has all changed. In order to be found online today, you need more than a basic real estate website — you need a highly visible multi-part web presence. This might include the main site, search engine optimization (SEO), a blog, online articles and press releases, and other publishing strategies.

When you increase your online activity in this way, you are capitalizing on something that is already occurring. People are already going online by the thousands to conduct research into their local real estate markets. So when you improve your web presence, you are tapping into an online marketplace that already exists.

Secret to Success: Of course, all of the web traffic in the world won’t do you any good unless you convert some of that traffic into leads and inquiries. So while your Internet visibility is certainly important, you also need to focus some of your energy on developing effective lead-generation systems for your website.

Item #3 – Direct Mail (When Used Properly)

A lot of real estate agents waste their time and money on postcard marketing, but only because they go about it all wrong. I know this for a fact because I’ve worked for more than one direct mail company. But with postcards, it’s not the marketing medium that’s broken — it’s the flawed technique that many agents use.

One of the primary benefits of this strategy is that you know where your direct mail pieces are going. You can choose certain neighborhoods, a zip code, or your entire city. You can get a list of people who live in apartments and send them a targeted message about moving up to homeownership. You are practically guaranteed that everyone who receives your postcard in the mail is going to at least glance at it (more than you can say for other forms of marketing).

Secret to Success: You need a really good reason to send a postcard out to a large audience. “I’m a new real estate agent in town” is not a good reason. Start with a big idea, an event, a unique product or service, and build your direct mail campaign around that.

Item #4 – The Yard Sign (An Oldie But a Goodie)

Aside from basic word-of-mouth marketing, I would say the real estate sign is the absolute oldest from of real estate marketing. As long as properties have been bought or sold, there have been people putting up signs to direct traffic toward the sale. Okay, so they’re not as glamorous as a brand-spanking-new website or a glossy brochure. But they have been getting the job done for decades!

Secret to Success: Don’t over-think the process of procuring real estate signs, and don’t overspend when purchasing them. All you really need is a professional looking product with basic information on it. Don’t waste valuable sign space with slogans or other useless items. Keep it simple.

Item #5 – Great Service Toward Clients

For many real estate agents, referrals still generate more business than any other real estate marketing technique. People are more willing to trust those they know. So when a friend or family member says good things about a real estate agent, it does more to persuade the person than anything the agent might say.

The key to getting referrals, of course, is to provide great service. By being proactive during the real estate transaction, and by keeping your client informed along the way, you will have a better chance of getting referrals later on down the road. Of course, it also helps if you can help them buy or sell a home effectively!

Secret to Success: Don’t be afraid to follow up with clients after the sale either. This is a good way to stay in their minds, which can lead to even more referrals. There are many occasions where you can send a brief email or postcard to past clients — on their birthdays, around holidays, on their one-year home buyer anniversary, etc.

Tenant in Common – Securities Or Real Estate – A Matter That is Open to Interpretation

Mostly, people that make TIC (tenant in common) investments will have 1031 exchange in mind and even though TIC as an industry is just a small part of 1031 market, it is still increasing at a good rate and thus worthy of serious consideration. At present, TIC can be brokered either as a securities or real estate transaction and thus there is a grey zone that exists with regard to whether Tenant in Common is Securities or Real Estate.

Securities Or Real Estate Dealers/Brokers

There are a few organizations such as the National Association of Realtors (NAR) that are concerned about whether TIC that is in the form of a partnership or security, or both, will be disqualified under 1031, and furthermore such disqualification will in turn require using security dealers/brokers for security transactions and not real estate brokers because the transactions are not deemed as being real estate deals.

In fact, to be sure about whether Tenant in Common is Securities or Real Estate you need to understand what security is and what real estate means. Typically, securities involve investing money or other form of property, and investing in common enterprise based on a third person’s expertise and the intention is to earn a profit. However, there is no real clarity when it concerns Tenant in Common: Securities or Real Estate though for any TIC transaction to be qualified as 1031 tax deferral, it requires that the National Association of Securities Dealers or NASD has to step in to evaluate the TIC industry and then shed further light on whether Tenant in Common are Securities or Real Estate.

What it thus boils down to is that, as far as Tenant in Common: Securities or Real Estate is concerned, if the TIC transaction is deemed to be one of security then the deal has to be brokered through securities dealer/broker and there is no place for a real estate broker in such instances. On the other hand, when Tenant in Common: Securities or Real Estate relates to a real estate TIC exchange, then the deal has to be brokered through real estate brokers/dealers and there is no place for the securities dealers/brokers.

As a matter of fact, when trying to decide whether Tenant in Common are Securities or Real Estate it is really quite difficult trying to figure out what is security and what is real estate, especially as the matter is further compounded because there is nothing clearly mentioned in the Revenue Ruling, or Revenue Procedure in this regard. Thus, depending on who is viewing the TIC, deciding on Tenant in Common: Securities or Real Estate depends on whether the NASD is handling the matter and if so, it will treat the TIC as securities while, if it were the NAR, then the TIC would definitely be considered as real estate.