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Getting Started

Take a State approved licensing course.
Take the State examination.
Receive your license.
Join the Westchester Co. Board of Realtors.
Start sales training.

If you are in Westchester County New York you jusr joined 8,000
agents competing for the same listings and the same prospects

Plan for success

What makes you a professional? Where do you begin?

1. Find a specialty or "niche"
2. Study your MLS area.
3. Start promoting yourself.
4. Advertise on the Internet.
5. Gather information for your web site.
6. Launch your web site.
7. You're on track.

Starting out in real estate you find a bewildering number of homes for sale on MLS, a few prospects and an army of competing salespeople. Where do you start? You can pursue homeowners, promise them a higher price and more advertising than any other agent until they give you a listing at a price they would like but is unattainable. Or you can take walk-in and call in prospects drive them all around the area they want hoping to find them something they will like and can afford. If you are lucky they will thank you when they find a house in another part of town with another broker.
Many new agents will try both and fail before the finish their first year.

One of the first systematic tools in the real estate profession was farming. Started in the 1970's it was the first form of target marketing. In farming each salesperson takes an area with a few hundred homes and "works" the area. That would include cold calling, monthly mailings, greeting cards and joining as many local organizations as possible. Some enterprizing agents deliver pumpkins to members of their fam every year. Farming is still possible but with numerous salespeople trying to work the same area it has become harder and more expensive to get profitable results.

Before you consider farming check if a real estate agent dominates the area you are considering. If there is, don't try it. You would have to out-spend and out-advertise the dominant agent. Your competitor could increase his advertising and the person willing to loose the most time and money would win the area.       see: farming pitfalls

Niche or Target Marketing

A well-planned real estate niche will generate listings, prospects and a steady income for a lifetime. But, best of all, it based on your favorite sport, hobby or whatever you like to do.

In niche marketing you target a section of the population that has a common interest or need. Niche marketing is a long-term investment. To assure that you will not loose interest for a long term it is most important that you know, share, and enjoy the group's activity. If you like golf and are reasonably good at it your niche could be area golf clubs. If you like sailing your niche could be your local yacht clubs. Your niche can be any group of people as long as there is no dominant agent in the group the group is large enough for you to make a profit. Before you pick a niche find out the size of the group and if there is a popular agent in the group. If the group is small or an agent has it tied up, don't try it. Check another area.

What is large enough?

The size of your group determines your potential income. To determine how many families you heed consider that in most of the US one out of five (20%) to ten (10%) families move each year. To be conservative, assume 10% of the group will move and that you will get listings from 30% of the people moving. Next get a rough idea of the income potential using the following formula: Families x 10% x 30% x (average home price x your share of the average commission) If the resulting income is not enough, add to the group or get a larger group. Of course, in addition to this income you will earn referral fees for some of the people moving away and commissions from prospects moving in.       see: selecting a niche

Applied to the Internet.

Niche marketing on the Internet is ideal for agents. It is relatively easy to optimize an agent site for a niche whether it is one town or one specialty in an area. It is difficult for an office to design and optimize a site for every town and specialty in a large geographic area. As a result people searching for "your town real estate" are likely to find agent's sites, giants such as and but very few individual real estate offices on page 1 of their search.

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