Why Broker Multifamily?
Many become residential real estate agents because it is what we know; we live in homes, have gone through our home purchase, and we see the market all around us. In today’s world, a myopic focus on residential home sales limits agents’ true potential.
By transitioning to commercial real estate, agents take their careers to the next level. Greater earning potential, more predictable hours, and the chance to become ingrained in a small community of high-level professionals are just a few reasons that the land of commercial real estate should be on any real estate agent’s horizon.
Read on for more details regarding my favorite reasons to work in commercial real estate. Of course, the industry comes with its challenges, but it also can be life-changing.
Boost Income Through Larger Transactions and Higher Commissions
Commercial real estate brokerage opens doors to a new salary bracket. The most apparent reason behind this is the sheer value of commercial versus residential transactions. It’s a no-brainer that an agent will earn more selling an entire condominium building than a single unit.
Of course, there are more subtle components behind the greater earning potential. First, the commission percentages are often higher than residential commissions. Nationally, the average commercial commission ranges from four to ten percent.
The final figure is highly dependent on the geographic location of the property and the property’s values. More expensive assets typically command a lower rate, down to one percent or less for ultra-expensive properties. Remember, one percent of $50 million is still $500,000.
Earn Both Sides of the Commission
Commercial agents also increase earning potential by working with both the buyer and seller. The parties negotiate with each other or through their attorneys in commercial deals rather than through their real estate agents. This element alone drastically shapes the role of the commercial agent, turning them from paper-pushers to expert advisors. I explore that feature more below.
The Commercial Real Estate Market Is Booming
The sheer potential of commercial real estate should catch the eye of any agent. In the United States, commercial real estate transaction volumes are expected to increase to $500 billion in 2021, which is up from $427 billion in 2020.
Long-time agents and others often convince real estate agents that the residential market offers an unparalleled level of safety. After all, people will always need homes. That is true.
Just as accurate is the idea that people will always need to rent multifamily units, whether out of preference or necessity. As such, the global real estate rental market is forecasted to reach $2,216.2 billion in 2023. For commercial agents, this means continued popularity and interest in the multifamily market by investors, and consequently, plentiful transactions.
Expect Lower Individual Transaction Volume
The flip side to these greater commissions is that an agent’s annual volume will be less when working in commercial real estate. Each transaction takes longer, usually a few months, compared to the quick 30-day turnaround of residential purchases. The long transaction time does result in cash flow challenges for new agents waiting for their first commission.
Transition to a Traditional Work Day
If the grind of weekend showings followed late-night contracts is wearing on you, commercial real estate can bring much-wanted relief. Regardless of whether an agent specializes in residential or commercial real estate, their schedule revolves around their clients’ needs and availability. Whereas residential clients buy and sell homes outside of their working hours, the real estate transaction is a commercial client’s work.
This simple difference creates wide-reaching ripples throughout an agent’s day. The likelihood that clients communicate with you and are available for showings during the traditional workday skyrockets. Residential clients cram showings, research, and contract work into the few precious hours after their own jobs end, meaning the residential agent’s workday never ends. Conversely, the commercial client may have zero interest or availability for addressing the transaction in the evenings or on the weekends.
All of this does not mean that being a commercial agent is a cakewalk, far from it. Commercial agents take on market and property research crucial for locking in important deals that residential agents do not have to touch. The workdays will be fast and furious, but commercial agents get much-needed down time.
Commercial Agents Develop a Niche and Demonstrate Expertise
One of the best parts of commercial brokerage is that it creates an entirely new dynamic in the agent’s career. Brokering commercial real estate requires more technical knowledge of the market and industry, and in any area, it is a surprisingly small world.
As a result, agents who thrive when forming professional relationships and want to be authoritative about a particular segment of the market will find welcome relief from the sea of anonymity of residential real estate.
Relationships drive commercial real estate, and many deals happen for properties that are not even on the market. It doesn’t take long to realize that pool of buyers and sellers is surprisingly small. Agents have time to build relationships with buyers and sellers because transactions take longer, and you can expect to see the same players again.
An added perk is that the companies and professionals you are working with may well be the connection that lands you your next job. Clients will be high-level executives with networks of their own. Because they are experts in their own right, they require real estate agents that bring complex, current data and opinions to the table.
Rely Less on Social Media, but Keep LinkedIn
Commercial agents network, of course, but through traditional business methods rather than the endless Facebook and Instagram posts that residential agents must use to find buyers and sellers. LinkedIn remains useful because it is essentially an online resume, so interested clients can easily research agents.
Making the jump from residential to commercial brokerage allows residential agents to expand their professional horizons for the better. Increased earning potential, stable hours, and the chance to be a true professional make the commercial world a good one for real estate agents. If you are ready to make the change, join my coaching program to start the journey toward becoming an expert.