What To Consider When Choosing A Brokerage

What To Consider When Choosing A Brokerage
What Should You Be Asking At Your Interview

Finding a brokerage to affiliate with is a big decision.  Different brokerages have different business models.  In the same way, different brokerages may have different interviewing processes for making determinations of which candidates they will invite to affiliate with their firm as independent contractors.  During the interview process, you will be also making a determination if the brokerage is a good fit for you...or one where you feel you will be in the best position to be successful.   

Depending on the brokerage company, your initial interview may be with a staff professional who specializes in recruitment, retention and onboarding of new associates or with a managing broker.  You should be prepared as you would for a professional job interview.  During the interview, you should ask questions about the brokerage company to help you learn about the company, the culture and benefits they offer to their associates.    

If interviewing several brokerages, you should compare as a whole instead of just comparing splits.  Consider all training, support and resources available with the split and monthly fees, if applicable.  A higher split may seem attractive, but if you do not receive the training and support to launch and grow a business, the percentage is not relevant.

At the interview, among other questions you may have, you should inquire about:

  • How long has the brokerage been in business?  
  • What training is offered by the company & in what format?
  • What costs of affiliation should you expect?
  • What marketing resources does the company provide?
  • What technology tools does the company provide?
  • Are there opportunities for company provided business or leads?  How are those distributed?
  • In addition to your own efforts, how can the company help you develop and grow?
  • Is there a written Broker/Sales Associate contract with clear expectations?
  • What support can you expect from the broker and administrative staff?
  • In addition to inquiring about initial split offerings, is there a written policy for how increases in commission splits are handled?
  • Do you require associates to specialize in working as a listing agent or selling agent only?  
  • What about commercial property?  Do you require a specialization in either residential or commercial and not both?

To arrange for a confidential interview with Coldwell Banker McMahan, contact Lesley DePaola, our Career Development Director at (502) 418-9236 or lesley.depaola@coldwellbanker.com.

What To Consider When Choosing A Brokerage

Itemization of Start Up Expenses

After you pass your state exam and are eligible for obtaining your real estate license, you will encounter some initial business start up expenses associated with obtaining your license and joining your local board of Realtors.  Those will include, but are not limited to:

Initial Licensing Fees

  • Errors & Omissions Insurance
  • Application Fees To Local, State And/Or National Associations of Realtors, If Applicable
  • Local MLS (Multiple Listing Service) Access Fees, If Applicable
  • Property Lock Boxes For Listings, If Not Provided By Local Board Of Realtors
  • Subscription Service To Access Lock Boxes, If Not Provided By Local Board Of Realtors

Other Fees

Individual brokerages set their own policies for charging monthly fees to their sales associates.  There can be an affiliation fee to the brokerage or brand, monthly company fees and/or monthly desk fees.  Coldwell Banker McMahan DOES NOT CHARGE an affiliation fee and we DO NOT charge monthly fees to our associates.

Individual brokerages set their own policies for what marketing resources and supplies they provide to a new sales associate.  These items may include, but are not limited to:  business cards, yard signs, your name badge and affiliation announcements.
What To Consider When Choosing A Brokerage

Why Is Training So Important?

Your pre-licensing coursework teaches  foundational knowledge about the Real Estate business.  You learn the theory of how and why real estate professionals conduct business and about general and state specific real estate laws.  

You will learn how to establish your business at the brokerage level.  Effective and consistent lead generation is the key to building a long term, sustainable real estate business.  When you begin working with customers and clients, you will need to master an array of skills to help with home searches and assist with marketing their home as a listing.  You will need training on how to prepare not only the relevant contract paperwork, but also on additional required forms.  After successfully negotiating through the offer stage, you will navigate the home buying or selling process to the closing table on behalf of your clients.  Your client relationship continues beyond closing in making that client, your client for life.  

Different companies have different approaches to training.  Some companies offer an informal training/mentoring program.  While this format can  offer individual attention, it can have very little structure or focus.  Other companies may direct newer associates toward joining a team of more experienced associates.  This format can provide transactional experience, but doesn't usually allow for an associate to build their own independent brand leaving them dependent upon the team leader.  

At Coldwell Banker McMahan, we are pleased to be able to offer training to new & experienced associates in several different formats.  Our focus is to allow you flexibility to customize your training experience to the learning style that’s best for you. 

As part of the Coldwell Banker, you have access to FREE, award winning training programs through Coldwell Banker Learning Center.   Locally, we combine small classroom, collaborative style learning classes on a weekly basis with our very own specific learning website www.mycblearning.com and individualized coaching with your managing broker or your operations manager.  Your local career development director is also available to help you get connected with training opportunities.   All of this works together to give our sales associates a lot of individualized attention.  Our goal is for you to provide the training and tools to hit the ground running and grow your business. 

Our weekly classes focus on three areas:  Lead Generation, Transacting and Technology.   Lead Generation classes teach you how to find new business and grow existing business.  Transacting classes teach you how to navigate through the complex process that moves forward toward a successful closing.  Technology courses focus on the many resources a Coldwell Banker McMahan associate has at their disposal to help you grow your business or improve your efficiency.  We are mindful of your time & keep sessions between 1 to 1 ½ hours.  The classes are content rich and are designed to give you skills you can immediately use & apply to your business. 

Our specific learning site www.mycblearning.com offers a library of videos on a variety of topics you can access at any time.