More and more agents are working from home and virtual office spaces. Brokerages across the country are re-evaluating their leases and lavish "palaces" because the office is always half-empty.
Why? With all the resources available to agents online, the need to come into a brick and mortar office day in and day out is not as important as it used to be.
Working virtually is not for everyone. You need discipline and a few great products to make your life easier!
Here are the top five products I recommend for working virtually:
1. Smartphone. In this day and age, I think ALL agents (not just the virtual ones) need a smartphone. My favorite is, of course, the iPhone, but there are other outstanding phones such as the BlackBerry, Droid, and the Nexus One. Try each one, ask your colleagues, and find one that works best for your needs.
2. Laptop. If you are working virtually you need a light and fast laptop that you can grab and go! MacBook Pro is an excellent choice as well as the Dell Vostro V13. I still think there are tons of possibilities for the iPad. It’s still too new to see if it will be better than a laptop for agents. I am looking forward to watching how this product evolves.
3. Headset and/or Bluetooth. A must-have! In fact, just today the new Bluetooth 4.0 was announced!
4. Mobile broadband. Sprint’s Overdrive allows up to five of your team to get online at the same time and gives you access to faster WiMAX networks. Here is a great list to check out: Mobile Broadband Review 2010.
5. A quiet space! OK, this is not a "product" — but probably as important, if not more important, than everything else. Find or create a dedicated work space in your home or find a great coffeehouse to park yourself!
So the question remains — how often do YOU go into your real estate office? Every day? A few times a week? Once a month? I’d love to hear your feedback on this subject — leave me a comment below!
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Katie Lance is the marketing manager for Inman News. Future of Real Estate Marketing is a part of Inman News.
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