Why Success in Real Estate is Not a Game of Chance

I’ve learned a lot of lessons during my climb to become a top agent in my market, and my new book is the best way I could think of to share them with you. Here are some key highlights.

By Ken Eddy

Real estate is the perfect profession for people with entrepreneurial minds who just can’t sit still. Each day offers a new challenge, limitless opportunity and the potential to positively impact the lives of clients.

Unfortunately, some career changers may view earning their real estate license as a ticket to the easy life. They think, “Gee, how hard can it be? All you have to do is tour nice houses with clients, write up a bit of paperwork and ta-da­ — you receive your commission and can take the rest of the month off.”

I don’t have to tell you how flawed this thinking is. It’s why I wrote my latest book, “Snakes and Ladders: A Realtor’s Journey to Success.” I hope it will help prepare new real estate professionals for the long road ahead. My goal isn’t to scare them off­ from this wonderful industry, but to provide them with the kind of guidance I wish I’d had when starting my career.

Success is not a given. It does not just happen; rather, it is elusive and fickle as the weather. You need to want it, and you need to be constantly on the hunt for it. If you don’t, I can guarantee you that it will not come hunting you.

Here is some of my advice to take control of your future rather than leave it up to chance.

  1. Read the Rules Before You Play

The main character in my book, John Michaels, believes that he is a natural-born salesman because he is full of confidence and fiercely independent. Wrong – there is no such thing as a natural born anything! Wherever you want to go in your career, seek out proper training and the right mentors to help you develop the skills you need to be successful. Don’t expect an overnight transformation, either.

  1. Continue to Seek New Inspiration

Money to provide for yourself and your family will always be a motivator. But in my experience it isn’t enough. After all, you can get paid to do any job. Why put up with the stress and potentially long hours of a real estate career? As John Michaels learns, there is a big difference between motivation and inspiration. Inspiration is a spark that reignites your passion for the industry. Whether it’s through a retreat, conference or new business book, expanding your horizons helps fuel your passion for your career.

  1. There is No Prize for Second Place

Real estate sales is a chain of many events, starting with the initial contact. Neglect one link, and the entire chain breaks. Nowhere is this more clear than in the listing presentation. You may be good at laying on the charm and getting a client to like you, but how much research did you put into the market value of a home before proposing a listing price? Did you dress to impress but show up five minutes late? You won’t win the listing for getting most things about the presentation right — someone is out there scoring 100 percent.

Like any industry, real estate is full of twists even the most experienced broker or agent can’t prepare for. The housing market, interest rates, natural disasters — there will come a time when something happens that you can’t control. Instead focus on what you can control: building your industry knowledge and practicing discipline. The only sure way to success is having a well-established work ethic.


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Any chance you’ll be doing an Audible version? Audible books are a great way for me to buy copies for our agents. =)

HI Dan
Thanks for inquiring. I have an audio version of my first book “Secrets of Success” (let me tell you, reading each and every word with voice inflexion and emphasis, was one of the hardest things I had to do). Unfortunately at this time, I have not committed to an audio book for Snakes and Ladders, due to the time and cost (at least 2k of studio time to read it) but if there is enough demand perhaps in the future I will commit to the project.
All; the best


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