I wrote to a friend some time ago about getting into the real estate business. I'll share some of the pros and cons of being in the real estate business with you.
It's true that 10% of the agents make 90% of the money and real estate is the best business to be working if you are in that 10% and the worst business if you are in the 90%. Real estate is more difficult that many other careers, you work nights and weekends (you must be available when people are available).
I have seen many agents come and go over the years. I began full time work after graduating from McMaster in 1981 with a Chemical Engineering degree and worked in the petroleum business from 1981 to 1987. I was doing extremely well in the petroleum industry, but when you work for a large company you must "sing the corporate song and do the corporate dance" all the time and for me to continue to do well in the industry, I would be required to transfer across the Canada, for the 5th time. My wife and I wanted to settle down and have a family here in Toronto, sounds real mushy, but these are the facts.
I asked for a transfer back to Ontario, there were no jobs available at the time that I wanted, so I left the petroleum business for real estate! I received my real estate license on October 26th, 1987 and have not looked back since.
I like the flexibility of hours and this has worked well for us. I have been available most of the time for my two boys, doing things such as, spend time with my boys while I would make breakfast for them, make lunch for my boys, snacks when they come home from school and I was able to spend so much time with them and watch them grow.
Many of our friends, especially the dads, but the mums too, leave for work before their children wake up and come home at 6, 7 or even 8pm, their children have been with baby-sitters, nanny's or others a great deal of time, and they just just don't get the time they need with their parents. I consider myself very lucky to be able to spend as much time as I have over the years - priorities I guess, but we sacrificed a great deal for about the first 7 to 10 years that I was in the business. It will pay off in the future for our boys and for us as they leave 'the nest'.
The information that I have outlined above is mostly the pro's of becoming a real estate agent. The cons for me are few and far between. The largest negative to me is not knowing where your next paycheck is coming from. My wife told me very early on that 'you are only as good as your last sale' and there is a great deal of truth in this statement. You make a sale, it's very satisfying to help someone sell or purchase a home, you count your blessings and your future income from the sale, and then you have to move on and sell another home! No longer having a normal or regular paycheck is probably the most difficult part of real estate that people have a hard time adjusting to. That is about the only negative for me and in reality this is probably my prime motivator and the reason that I continue to work hard for my clients and keep on selling, because if I were to stop, so would the income. It's as simple as that. There you have it, a brief synopsis of the pros and cons of being a real estate agent.
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