As of 2021, statistics show that there are more than 30,000 property agents agents in Singapore! Among this vast pool, the main differentiator would be ‘good’ and ‘bad’ ones. However, how do we firstly define exceptional characters in this sector, and what are the best practices we can adopt to become such leading edge individuals ourselves and continue to flourish in the business? Let us look at the 3 common mistakes property agents make that ends their career.
After passing the RES exam, even if the newly minted property agents have performed with flying colours, many agents are still new to the field. This lack of experience adds to vulnerability and increased susceptibility to pitfalls and falling prey to common tribulations. Let me shed light on what these blind spots are so that you can safely steer clear of them.
Common Mistake #1: Complacency
First and foremost is complacency, which is a killer. Perhaps it’s beginner’s luck, or that this was really the fruits of good work. Regardless of either, it is important to always stay humble. Just because you’ve tasted success once doesn’t mean that this would continue to ensure without any maintenance!
I knew of an agent who managed to clock in an impressive $48k just two months into the business. Luck was on his side; the deal came in swiftly without a hitch and unfortunately, provided the impression that he did not have to work as hard for results. Due to little prospecting and effort, no more opportunities materialised– and when these expectations of his were not met, he gave up.
That spelt the end of his career.
We cannot use just one show of triumph to determine long term success. Just because you’ve won once doesn’t indicate that you’ve mastered all there is to know and that you can now be stagnant while receiving a constant flow of income.
As self-employed individuals, it is a consistent effort to reinvest back into the business by way of upgrading our knowledge, doing daily market research, going for training courses, learning new marketing methods– and the list goes on. The flow and direction of our work hinges entirely on our own resolution to carry it further.
Hence, it is crucial that we pace ourselves by allocating enough funds and resources into building stamina for supporting your venture
Common Mistake #2: Excessive Spending
Real estate can really be a gold mine if you’re competent and work smart. It’s a bonus if you have a natural aptitude for it too!
For some new property agents, they become disillusioned by the amount of money they’re earning. Never in their life have they gotten such handsome commissions, and while it’s factual that they are raking in impressive profits, they begin spending more than they earn, along with taking up more financial commitments. Common examples are instalments for their first car, excessive purchases of luxury items and other expenses.
Such a lavish lifestyle can only be sustained with a definite flow of high income every month. Unfortunately, some agents might cease to remember that due to their job being purely commission-based without a fixed basic pay, it is normal to encounter down periods where their takings are significantly less than previous instances. And when this happens, trouble awaits,
If they’re not careful, they could easily rake up a mountain of debt!
As property agents providing consulting services, we should have a more complete understanding regarding the value of money, whereby if well-managed, can rapidly grow into a substantial sum in a short amount of time. We are equipped with the domain knowledge of assets and how they can help us maximise our current resources and funds– and if we can achieve this for our clients, we should be doing so for ourselves first!
Please delegate some of your earnings into investing wisely. Your future self will thank you tons for that, and doing so also sets an ideal example for your customers to follow, branding you as someone who practices what they preach!
Common Mistake #3: Hard Selling
Nobody likes it when they’re being coerced into buying a product or service. This includes pushy property agents who are just there to close the deal without consideration of their client’s needs.
If you’re trying to prospect, people want to hear about how something benefits them and can fill up any gaps in their life. It is never about what you want in this case.
Learning how to practice lots of empathy applies in such a scenario. For starters, put yourself in your customer’s shoes. How would you feel if a salesperson approached you, but everything he or she posits seems to only serve themselves well, with little or no thought for your welfare? No surprise that you’d definitely be put off and think of them as selfish and purposeful.
You probably would not engage them due to lack of trust, along with the sentiment that they would be operating based on their own gains. If you sell this way to your friends or relatives, this is a surefire way to sour the relationship.
Successful property agents build rapport with their clients by always thinking of their needs first and meeting these accordingly. In this line, doing so does not indicate neglecting or compromising your business; on the contrary, this paves the way for fantastic long term relationships which eventually become a source of referrals for you.
People can detect sincerity from a mile away and are bound to patronise you if they can sense that you are genuine in your pursuit. To customers, this is an invaluable quality in a service provider and one that they deeply appreciate.
Now that you know what to keep your eyes peeled for, let’s touch on the values that should be incorporated. The first would be open-mindedness and the passion to work with people from all walks of life. You’re bound to meet all sorts of interesting characters who lead various lifestyles, some that might even present as a bit of a culture shock to you! However, there should be no judgment or prejudice on your part when attending to them, and regardless of how different they might be from what you are used to.
Personally, I see this aspect of my job as an eye-opener, a tool that allows me to enjoy a more complete view of the world! I have also learned many new and novel things from my interactions with such clients which I am grateful for.
This segues into my next point, which is having a good listening ear. As everyone’s situation is unique, we have to practice active listening and truly understanding its details. Only then would we be able to solve them– there is no one size fits all solution!
Especially in today’s rapidly evolving environment, things do not stay static. Property agents cannot afford to slack off because the moment we do, the entire playing field might have shifted from what we previously knew! Successful property agents are always at the top of their game.
So, in order to keep up and stay abreast of the market’s condition, we have to be in a constant state of upgrading ourselves. This requires a penchant for learning new skills and ideologies, to be hungry for knowledge, paired with an insatiable curiosity.
Last but not least is a good sense of responsibility. When you make promises to your client, be sure to deliver them and not underperform. Otherwise, your credibility will be affected. Learning how to manage expectations is a vital ability so both parties can always be on the same page. Punctuality also falls under the umbrella of being responsible. You should not be keeping your customers waiting on you as it shows that you do not respect their time and schedule.
Are you ready to be a successful property agent? Speak to me to find out what are the requirements and how I successfully helped coached many consistent top producers.
Justin Kong is a passionate real estate consultant who enjoys sharing property investment insights through his property blog Aspiring Property Investors.
Today, many homeowners have benefitted from Justin Kong’s proven strategies to help them accumulate wealth safely through their property investments.
Justin Kong is also a team leader with a strong belief in helping groom future real estate producers and leaders.