How did you get started in the real estate business?
Kelly Leighton
Oct 27, 2017
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Nearly 70 percent of Realtors® were self-initiative in starting their careers in the business.

Connections in the business were also a crucial aspect. Nineteen percent of agents were referred to the business by a friend, 17 percent became involve thanks to personal connections, while family connections and a family business led another 15 percent. The National Association of Realtors® published 2017 Choosing a Career in Real Estate: A Perspective on Gender, Race and Ethnicity last week, releasing information on your peers in the industry.

Real estate is most often a second career (48 percent) or a third career (34 percent). Only for 18 percent is it their first career.

The flexible hours in real estate highlight the career for the majority (67 percent), however, 64 percent have an interest in real estate, while 54 percent enjoy working with people. The entrepreneurial aspect of being an agent is attractive to half of agents.

To succeed, 86 percent of agents said you need people skills, while 84 percent said self-motivation is necessary. Negotiation skills, along with problem-solving skills are also key, according to 73 percent.

Last year, residential agents had a median dollar value of sales of $280,300, while commercial agents had a median dollar value of sales of $826,900. Agents that worked in both residential and commercial sales had a median dollar value of $273,400 in residential sales, and $442,300 in commercial sales.

For residential agents, the median length of time in business is 12 years, for commercial agents it is 25 years.

Women make up 63 percent of NAR’s membership. While white and Caucasians members represent 82 percent, Asian and Pacific Island agents had the highest median gross income and sold the priciest homes, and black and African American Realtors® are more likely to be agents part-time.

What led you to a career in real estate?