The landscape of real estate is constantly changing, and the nuances of an agent are evolving right alongside - regardless of title, the best professionals are defined by the skills they offer their clients.
Becoming a Realtor is more than just earning the label. The position affords a professional the opportunity to help buyers and sellers through a particularly tricky and stressful period. As more and more agents are finding out, however, opinions are easily shaped by what goes on a business card.
A change in legislation
Recently, the New York Department of State, responsible for the area's real estate licensing, changed how it defines titles within the industry, according to the New York Times. For example, some agents, such as Alex Dietrich, used to be referred to as "vice president" or "managing director." In Dietrich's case, he was called both. Now, after a clarification was established by the Department of State, he no longer can no longer claim those titles.
Employment descriptions like those are only allowed to belong to staff employees, while agents are typically contractors, the news source noted. That distinction is now strictly enforced in the state of New York.
How homes are bought and sold in the area have been altered. Dietrich told the news source that he frequently gets asked if he was demoted, making attracting and retaining clients more difficult, even though neither his position - nor his skill set - have changed.
The best agents should rely on information to sell homes, and property data and mortgage records from Courthouse Retrieval System could help a professional get ahead.
Part-time or full-time?
Perhaps unfairly, many clients view part-time and full-time agents in a different light, even though many part-timers put in as much, if not more, effort than their colleagues.
Instead, emphasis should be placed on work ethic, not title, according to Bankrate. What sells foreclosed houses or other bank owned properties could be knowledge and dedication, and an agent who is responsive to client needs may do better, even if they only work part-time.
"It's very difficult to place all part-time and full-time agents in one hat," Chantay Bridges, a Los Angeles-area real estate specialist, told the news source. "I've worked closely with both. There are some part-time agents that are extremely active, even more active than the full-timers."
In fact, many part-time agents are more flexible, and can work with clients on their terms. Regardless of title, knowledge is critical, Bankrate noted. A smart agent has the ability to assist in a variety of aspects, best helping people buy and sell their homes.