- Moving during the winter can be advantageous because you're dealing with fewer transactions.
- At any time of year, however, your transition between brokerages can confuse clients.
- If you're contemplating a switch, it's a good idea to take careful stock of your situation.
Moving — it’s something we all do, whether it’s to a new house or a new job. It’s not unusual for real estate agents to change brokerages. Although financial considerations are obviously important to any business decision, they should not be the sole motivating factor.
As the year draws to a close, many agents might be reviewing the year they’ve had and pondering if now is the right time to make a move.
First, if you’re thinking about making a change, ask yourself what you hope to get out of such a move. As an entrepreneur in today’s market, do you want a strong business partnership with your brokerage, with someone who can coach you to more success?
Are you looking for better commission split? Do you want to find an office that is a better fit for you personally? Is location an issue?
Once you’ve pinpointed what is most important for you as an agent, analyze your current brokerage, and consider what it does well and what it could do better. If you decide that a move is necessary to take your business to the next level, you should also consider the timing of the decision.
Moving brokerages at this time of year offers several advantages, as well as disadvantages.
If you’re considering a change, it’s a good idea to weigh the pros and cons:
Making a switch at the beginning of the new year has the ability to:
1. Re-energize you
Starting the new year at a new brokerage might give you a fresh perspective on your market and how you can grow your brand. It might make you excited to be a real estate agent again, particularly if you’re an experienced agent.
Your new office might inspire you to try new ideas that could positively impact your personal growth and development.
2. Reinvigorate your business
Obviously, you consider a new brokerage for a variety of reasons. Perhaps the company specializes in unique ways to leverage past clients into additional closed transactions.
Or maybe they offer different types of fuel you can take advantage of like relocation, online leads or investor prospects. Whatever the case might be, you should feel confident that you will see an increase in your bottom line.
3. Give you more time to move
Winter is traditionally a slower time for real estate. Take advantage of the fact that you have fewer listings to manage in the winter months. With fewer listings to handle, you’ll have more time to explore your new brokerage’s offerings and to settle into a new environment.
Of course, switching brokerages is never an easy decision, and making a move at this time of year (or any time) comes with a few downsides. The disruption may:
1. Create confusion
In any move, you have to consider how it affects those around you, and foremost among them, your clients. Clients might lose track of where you are, and this obviously could have a significant negative impact on your business, especially at first.
2. Distract from prospecting
Just like when you’re moving homes, moving offices comes with many distractions: the actual physical move, meeting new co-workers, getting used to new systems, etc.
All of these things can keep you from doing your most important work: prospecting for new clients and closing deals.
3. Come with a cost for rebranding
A new brokerage name means you will have to rebrand your marketing to align with your new company. Depending on where you are in your marketing cycle and how much marketing you use, this might not be an insignificant cost.
Of course, your new brokerage might offer improved marketing opportunities, so it could work out to your advantage in the end.
Whether now is the right time to move to a new brokerage, it’s always a good idea to take the opportunity to evaluate your current situation.
Are you satisfied with the support your current brokerage offers? Are you willing to make a change to move your career forward?
Whatever you choose, carefully weigh the pros and cons of switching brokerages, as well as the timing of that move, to best determine what is right for you.
Wendy Forsythe serves as executive vice president and head of global operations for Carrington Real Estate Services, LLC. Follow her on Twitter.