There are several things to consider when making the transition into selling luxury real estate. Being a luxury agent is similar in many ways to being a traditional agent or working in other divisions like commercial or rental. All contain the same basic real estate principles. With all the similarities you’d think it would be easy to transition to being a luxury real estate agent, but it’s really not.
The biggest difference for agents who specialize in luxury is the amount of time and money you need to put in to be successful. There are other differences as well. Luxury agents need to be even more knowledgeable, more personable and be able to adapt to the high stress, high demand needs of a client.
It takes a lot of time and commitment to become a successful luxury agent.
It’s important that you network yourself both in-person and through social platforms. Having strong attention to detail is imperative, so is having good communication skills (particularly listening). Simply put, the stakes are higher and so is the need to make sure your transaction is foolproof.
Whether we like to admit it or not there is most certainly a lot more selling to be done when you are listing a million dollar property. Things are done on a much larger scale with luxury properties, which can bring a new set of complexities to the process of buying or listing a high-end property.
Let’s take a more detailed look at three areas that are important to every real estate agent but especially pronounced for those of us working in the luxury space.
Relationships and Networking
Getting recognized as a luxury agent takes time. You must first establish a reputation that is supported by your performance and portfolio. The community must view you as an expert and you need to fuel that reputation by nurturing an influential client list. Be genuine, and do the extra things that create lasting relationships and referrals.
Knowledge and Expertise
It is nearly impossible for the part-time side job real estate agent to excel in the luxury space. With a constantly changing marketplace and high stakes transactions in the works, you need to be 100% buttoned up on all aspects of your service to the client. This takes superior knowledge and a level of expertise that puts your client at ease during the home buying or selling process.
Building a Brand
Once you’ve established yourself as a luxury agent it is always smart to sustain your brand with a consistent and sophisticated marketing strategy. A savvy agent will know the market and just how to maintain a solid presence without overspending. My best advice is to stay visible in both traditional and digital ad platforms. Often times, upscale parts of town will have viable community papers, prominent billboards, or even Facebook groups and popular local websites. All of which can be valuable for staying top of mind with an upscale audience. Using technology to your advantage is also smart so assets like drones, superior photography, virtual tours, and perhaps your own website are all good ideas.
Lastly, and perhaps more importantly being active and approachable will endear you to your current clients and provide opportunities to gain new ones. Volunteer, be present at events (especially school and church) to really help build your brand. As much as marketing tools are valuable, nothing holds the branding power of a handshake with a conversation.
Being a luxury agent is a demanding, yet rewarding career opportunity for the serious real estate agent. The stakes are high but so are the benefits. If you want to learn more or simply follow us as a division of Tru Realty, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. We meet twice a month and always welcome those that are interested in learning more.
Cheryl Malcolm is Director of the Luxury Division and Associated Broker at Tru Realty. She was raised in the Bay Area of California by a real estate savvy family that instilled in her a deep understanding of the industry. Cheryl’s passion and integrity paired with a lifelong connection to real estate are what inspire her to provide clients with the highest quality of service.