Dear Rookie:

I think you should hook up with an experienced agent who needs someone to work their buyer calls. That’s the best way to get started in this market.

Bani LaRiche
REMAX Affiliates

Dear Rookie:

Maybe you need to change to another company. There are plenty of companies that want to train you to be a good Realtor. This not only benefits you to be trained properly, but also benefits your broker because you will be closing deals. Find a company that has a training program and stop knocking on doors. Good luck to you.

Catrin Barsch
Associated Finance Mortgage Co.
Capitola, Calif.

Dear Rookie:

I remember my beginning days; they were similar to yours–13 years ago. I stopped selling for five years, then came back. I did not make money for six months, because four of my deals got cancelled–bad luck or my broker did not have sufficient knowledge, etc.

I will try to help you if I can.

Vivek Bajaj
Hallmark Properties

Dear Rookie:

I have been in the business for approximately 15 years. Probably one of the best pieces of advice that I can give you is to conduct open houses for other Realtors in your firm. I will almost always pay for the ad if someone else holds an open house for me and what Realtor wouldn’t want more exposure for the listing?

Find out as much about that particular property as possible prior to the open house. Previewing the house with the listing agent and/or the owner is a very good idea. Also, do a little research and bring copies of other listings in the area that might work for buyers if that one does not. Ask for everyone’s name and phone number and ask them if they would like some professional assistance. I have found that a fantastic way to get names and numbers is to ask them if they would like to be notified if there is any change in price or status on the house. You would be surprised how well it works. Of course, at an open house, the clients are coming to you and remember that a lot of potential buyers are also potential sellers.

Good luck in your career.

Greg Wilson
Associate Broker
All State Real Estate
Eugene, Ore.

Dear Rookie:

It is hard to relate to being in a “seller’s market” as our inventory has swelled to record highs (up 17 percent from last year this time). Our current average “days on the market” is 125 days and then another 30-40 for inspections and financing.

Regardless of the market, however, you might want to check with some of the agents who have teams and see if there might be a “buyer agent” position available.  Those of us with years of experience and high level of production are in a position to take on buyer specialists. Check with some of them. There are probably several in your market place with teams.

Tom Seelbinder
RE/MAX Advantage
Portage, Mich.

Dear Rookie:

All I have to say it sounds like you are doing the right things just keep at it. Remember, what you are doing is called farming. When a farmer plants his seeds they do not grow right away he needs to wait for the next crop. The same with you if you keep planting the seeds the business will come. Do not get discouraged success is failure turned inside out (not that you are failing). Are you asking for the sale? You are doing a tremendous amount of prospecting and no results. How are your scripts? You need to know what to say to generate business.

Regarding that FSBO, did you leave them any info about the market? If so, do not next time. One thing you may want to try is to partner up with a top producer and work their buyers. Good luck and you will be successful if you keep prospecting.

Jim Fitzgerald
RE/MAX Realty Plus

Dear Rookie:

If I assume you are a real person who really does need help there are several things that you may want to consider:

1. What you have been doing isn’t working. So either you are getting bad advice or aren’t following the good advice you are getting.

2. The number of new agents and the total number of agents who are in the business has no relevance to your personal success level. None. If you are looking for “reasons” why you should fail, they are available in abundance. But why seek failure reasons? Most of the industry is based on failure. Almost all real estate instructors are failed agents, and the average full-time agent (per NAR) sells less than a house a month.

3. Success in this business is not only possible, it is pretty simple. It is being accomplished every day by people new to the business. Veteran agents who apply correct technology to their business routinely make huge incomes. Correct technology would be those things which actually work. If you would like to expose yourself to a huge collection of successful techniques and star agents who are totally willing to share, go to

4. Although it is true that the way to last in the business is to get listings, it can be a mistake for a new agent who has never made a sale to start with getting listings. It is not necessary for you to compete “head to head” with experienced agents to make a sale. Sellers are looking for agents, and do tend to shop for one. Buyers, on the other hand, do not typically want an agent – they are looking for a house, they are not “looking for an agent.” So getting buyers can be easy and allow you to actually make a few sales, so you can get started.

5. You can hold open houses to find buyers, and there are many agents who will allow you to hold open houses on their listings. Or even (with permission) run ads on those listings to generate buyers. Sell at least four to six houses to buyers. Then go back to working on getting listings.

6. Spend less time writing to Inman News. Work on getting buyers and finding the house they want. It just isn’t true that top agents won’t help you. I am one of the top agents in the U.S. and I am totally willing to help you. Go to my Web site, and send me an e-mail. I’ll answer.

Russell Shaw

Dear Rookie:

I too am a new agent, 11 months in the business.In 11 months I have become the number two listing agent in my area of about 5,000 Realtors and I’m in the top 100 selling agents.

It took me six months to close my first deal but since then all is history. I maintain an inventory of over 30 homes at any given time and about 12 buyer agent contracts.

It was not easy, bankruptcy was rising over me before the profits started to come in.

I made my mark by picking a niche market, quickly becoming an expert in that niche, mass mailing to the niche market on a weekly basis, setting high standards, requesting a minimum commission of 7 percent for my extensive advertising of my listings, maintaining an above average professional image, and never taking no for the first answer.

Now with my first anniversary coming, I’m preparing to hire an assistant, I’ve just moved to a larger office with the same company, and have set my goals for a minimum of $10 million in closed transactions for 2004, that should put me in the top 10 agents, and $30 million in closed transactions for 2005.

I believe if you set your sights very high, even if you fail to hit them you’ll fall further forward than everyone else.

J. Goscinski
GMAC Real Estate The Kee Group

Got tips, ideas or advice for the Rookie Realtor? Send them to


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