Viewing by month: February 2011

Why dressing professionally is vital to Selling Homes

‘The better the show, the more dough you make’ is a well recognised saying in sales.  While there are multiple factors that contribute to your success as a real estate agent, one essential element is how you dress at work and the image that you present to the world.

Poor personal hygiene and inappropriate attire can drastically impact buyers’ opinion of not only you and the company you represent, but also the value of the property in question. It is professional to make your client feel comfortable and the way you dress will impact this. 

Your image needs to correspond to your career aspirations. There is no excuse for dressing inappropriately or leaving your manners at home.  Being dressed for success does not happen by itself, you have to plan for it, budget and shop for it.  
Despite the weather some clothing items are a no go zone for real estate agents:

  • Sandals
  • Shorts
  • Hats
  • Stained clothes
  • Bad perspiration marks

Some simple solutions to help you choose the right outfit during varying weather conditions are possible. 

During a heat wave:
• Choose a garment made from breathable fabric. When it comes to staying cool natural fibres are your best bet.
• Avoid wearing dark black as dark colours absorb light and can make you feel the temperature more.

During a cold snap:
• Go for layers so you can remove or add clothing when stepping in and out of the cold.
• If needed, purchase a scarf to compliment your suit. 

Despite clothing not necessarily being high on the list of traditionally valued real estate principles, do not discount the notion that the way you dress will impact others’ perception of you and your skills as a real estate agent.  By acknowledging that dressing professionally can have an impact on your career and attiring yourself accordingly, you could enjoy increased success as an agent. 

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 28/02/2011 at 1:26 PM | Categories:

The Value of Working in a Team

Coming together is a beginning.
Keeping together is progress.
Working together is success.

- Henry Ford

Real estate by its structure is naturally competitive.  In many agencies it is not as usual for agents to combine into groups larger than around two or three and engage in team work driven activities as it may be in other industries.  Due to this independent attitude, some agents keep to themselves and potentially miss out on the opportunities that such team work can afford.

Although many real estate agents enjoy the independent nature of their work, there is no doubt that working within a team can often prove advantageous to both the agents themselves as well as the agency as a whole.  The efficiency of the real estate cycle - attracting listings, and constantly marketing and selling properties - can be improved when aspects of teamwork are encouraged and employed.  

Through teamwork, experienced real estate agents can more often than not lend a hand to new agents with little experience or none.  Such mentoring relationships allow for the development of proficient, experience-based skills, in many cases resulting in better real estate agents and closer, more productive relationships. 

Working as a team, some mentor relationships operate with the mentor handling contracts, marketing and the generation of new business, whilst the agent in training handles property viewings and learns the ins and outs of the real estate industry and how it works.   Such guidance is the cornerstone of team building and can be extremely productive. 

It must also be considered that real estate is a business that requires more than just sales and people skills.  There is a need for marketing, strategic planning, networking and negotiating – some people may be good at everything, while others could find that their strengths lie in particular areas.  This is another opportunity for teams to come into their own – with agents who have different skill sets joining together to achieve the most productive outcome.   

In real estate, teambuilding is often proven to be a successful model as it encourages individuals to work together on listings to help satisfy the customer.  If one agent can complement another’s success in a particular neighbourhood or offer a skill, a viable option may be for the agents to couple their sales experience and share listings and commissions.  Whilst there will always be agents who feel they may work better as a single unit, other agents who choose to work in teams may realise great success. 

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 21/02/2011 at 2:30 PM | Categories:

How the sounds of your voice affects your message

As real estate agents we all know the importance of verbal communication – many of the most important aspects of selling real estate are obvious communication exercises.  Learning how to use the tone and pitch of your voice can assist you to conduct auctions and negotiate with buyers or sellers more effectively than you might be doing so now.

Paying attention to the way you use your voice could help you make that extra sale. There was an interesting article to this effect in the January/February edition of SOLD magazine entitled ‘What do you sound like?’  In the article, Juliet Jordan, the Chief Voice Coach for The Voice Business, offers suggestions on how to use your voice to impress prospective buyers during property inspections. 

Did you know that 8 out of 10 people worry about the sound of their own voice? Below is a list of voice aspects, as identified by Juliet Jordan, that tend to irritate people.  If you happen to practice one or some of these annoying habits do not worry as once identified, they can be watched for and avoided.

1.    Being too loud
2.    Being too soft
3.    Sounding nasal and whiny
4.    Being monotone and uninteresting
5.    Fading out
6.    Speaking too fast
7.    Clearing your throat constantly
8.    Having a strong accent
9.    Mispronunciation
10.  Mumbling

As a real estate agent your voice can profoundly affect the mindset your client has regarding a particular property.  For example Juliet notes when you show a prospective buyer into a bedroom you should slow down your rate of talking and quieten your tone to set the mood of a gentle and calming environment, reflective of the bedroom as a sanctuary. 

On the other hand she advises a happy and upbeat tone, with a slightly raised pitch, to induce excitement in the buyer about a kitchen. 

The bottom line to her advice on changing your tone towards different rooms in the house is that it is hard to get excited about a home if an agent has a monotonous tone.  This lack of expression can be misread as boredom or a lack of respect of the buyer.

The article is worth reading as it makes definitive points on what not to do as a respected agent. Juliet concludes with several different exercises to help you monitor and improve your pitch and tone of voice.  These are worth noting and even putting into practice, as in the end, communicating clearly and appropriately can be effective ways to help you improve as a real estate agent. 

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 14/02/2011 at 12:33 PM | Categories:

How to behave at the office to improve your career as a Real Estate agent

Almost everyone has a pet hate and a bad habit. Often, despite your ability as a real estate agent, the airing of these personal behaviours and view points in the office can be detrimental to the way people perceive you and may harm your professional development.  It is important to understand that your behaviour at work can and will affect your career as a CENTURY 21 real estate agent.

To secure your position and personal reputation within the property industry it is advised that you consciously monitor your own behaviour, attitude and habits at work.  Whilst it is true that we have become accustomed to accepting small indignities from our, at times, annoying co-workers, it is to your advantage to be aware of how not to act when at work.  

Take the following as a guide as to the appropriate behaviour for a real estate agent to engage in:

  • Try not to talk on your mobile phone during meetings.  If it is absolutely necessary for you to receive a call, be sure to absent yourself and apologise.  Step outside if you are talking about information personal to another client. 
  • Do not take credit for someone else’s work.
  • Do not engage in general discrimination and rudeness around the office.
  • Do not smoke in a non-smoking area, or around other colleagues.
  • Do not ignore missed calls and emails – try to return as promptly as is practical.
  • Do not take extra long lunch breaks.
  • Do not arrive to work late and leave early.
  • Do not send unprofessional emails to clients or colleagues.
  • Do not gossip about co-workers.
  • Control your criticism and engage in constructive feedback when invited to do so by colleagues. 

It is important to note that workplace etiquette requires more than just saying “please” and “thank you”.  The following tips are also a helpful guide for behaviour in the real estate environment:

  • Show interest in your buyer (not just the seller from whom you take your commission)
  • Monitor what you say and how you say it
  • Keep your desk clean and orderly
  • Leave your personal issues at home

Conducting appropriate and professional behaviour can definitely help you to advance your career as a CENTURY 21 real estate agent.  Learning to monitor your own bad habits and pet hates within your office environment should effectively help you to project a more successful and professional appearance. 

1 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 07/02/2011 at 12:28 PM | Categories: