Thinking about becoming a real estate agent in Washington State? If you're interested in hanging your shingle in Seattle, Union Hill, Redmond, or anywhere else in the Evergreen State, we can help you prepare for your Washington real estate career.
Day to Day Life of a Real Estate Agent in Washington
Whether you represent buyers, sellers, or both, as a real estate agent, you will accompany your clients through every step of the home sale process. You are the client's advocate, negotiator, and business coordinator.
In simple terms, your job responsibilities include:
Walking your clients through all the steps of their real estate transaction.
Answering client questions about the home buying or selling process.
Communicating and negotiating with all other parties on your clients' behalf.
Coordinating all the steps of the sale to keep the transaction running as smoothly as possible.
On a typical day, you might spend your morning reaching out to prospective clients. When you first start out, you will need to devote even more time to prospecting. If you don't have clients, you don't have an income. This means you'll have to call or email family, friends, and acquaintances who might be thinking about buying or selling a home. You might also try to contact "cold leads" to increase your pool of prospects.
Afternoons often involve work with current clients. For example, you might meet with your seller clients. You'll discuss the list price for their home, determine the best time to list their home, or answer questions about the timeline for the sale process. You might also spend this time helping them to stage their home and take photos for the listing. If you're working with buyers, you might spend your afternoon researching homes for sale and driving your clients to showings.
In the evening, you will probably need to spend a couple of hours marketing yourself online. This might include updating your website, writing a blog post, or interacting with people on social media. The vast majority of buyers and sellers find their agents online or through word of mouth. So if you want business, this is where you have to be. Just be sure to follow your state's rules for online advertising.
The Washington Real Estate Market
In almost all areas of Washington, there is a strong seller's market right now. According to the Washington Office of Financial Management, the median home sale price in 2020 was $452,400. That's a 13.7% increase over 2019. What's more, Redfin estimates that real estate prices increased another 23.9% year-over-year by June 2021.
This rapid rise in real estate prices is being driven by high demand and low supply. By June 2021, the number of homes sold rose 31.8% and the number of homes for sale fell 41.1%. That means that buyers who want to land a contract on a house are offering above the asking price.
How to Be a Successful Washington Real Estate Agent
If you want to land more clients, one of the most effective things you can do is increase your knowledge of the real estate market. Don't just research comps and today's market conditions. Spend time talking to industry experts so you can learn to anticipate future changes in home value. Know about new policies coming down the pike and how they might impact the economy in your local area.
You should also learn as much as you can about your community. It's important to buyers to choose a neighborhood where they fit in. That's why the state of Washington allows a three-day neighborhood review. Your clients will want to know about the schools, community resources, events, and crime rates.
You can help them with this information by preparing a resource packet with contact information for law enforcement agencies, schools, transportation services, census data, etc., for your local area. This service can be helpful for sellers too, as it gives potential buyers a reason to love their neighborhood.
For more information on being a Washington real estate agent, check out our online Washington licensing course. Here's to your new career!