A career in real estate can potentially be one of the most lucrative professions a person can pursue. But, not many real estate groups set up stalls at career days, nor is the profession advocated for by many teachers and parents. Most agents enter the profession purely by chance – and this ‘chance’ usually takes the form of an encounter with an old acquaintance who happens to be doing really well for themselves as an agent.

If you’re looking for a change and have yet to consider the real estate profession, here are a few questions you could ask yourself to discover if you’re cut out for this industry:

Have you passed Matric?
To qualify as a registered estate agent, you must have successfully completed grade 12 as a minimum requirement before you can begin training. The qualification process includes a 12 month internship under a certified principal estate agent as well as completing a Further Education and Training Certificate (FETC): Real Estate (NQF 4) qualification – principal estate agents require an NQF 5 training certificate – and writing the final Professional Designation Examination (PDE).

Are you resilient?
After qualifying, you will need a healthy dose of perseverance to become successful in this industry. If you want to become an agent, you need to be prepared for a few rough financial months. This is a business of high risks and high rewards. While you run the risk of going without an income for months while trying to secure a sale, the reward for that risk could potentially earn you more in a single day than a person earns in a year. A successful agent is one who is resilient and who has the financial discipline to survive the quiet months.

Do you have good inter-personal skills?
A successful agent is a people’s person – but genuinely so. A fake smile and a half-attempt at listening will not sell many houses. Real estate is all about building relationships and understanding the needs of a client possibly even better than they understand their own needs. At RE/MAX, we believe in creating clients for life. That’s why most of our business comes from referrals. Conclude one transaction successfully and you add a friend and a business partner all in one. However, this can only happen if you truly enjoy working with people.

Are you willing to work after hours?
Real estate is not a normal nine-to-five job. Aspiring agents need to be prepared to work all kinds of hours and over weekends if they want to secure sales. Successful agents are the ones that understand that most homeowners work normal office hours, so most real estate related business will need to happen outside of these hours. Real estate is one of those careers that can take a person from rags to riches. But, nobody said the job was easy. For those who get it right, the rewards will soon make all their efforts worthwhile.