Your South Carolina real estate brokerage will play a critical role in the early stages of your real estate career. Not only will your broker sign off on your work, but he or she will also provide valuable information and feedback as you start landing clients and making sales.
But with so many brokers operating in South Carolina, how do you know which is the right brokerage for you?
Here are five factors to consider when choosing your South Carolina real estate brokerage.
1. Training Opportunities
Before you become a licensed real estate agent in South Carolina, you’ll need to complete a pre-license course to learn the basic principles and practices of real estate. But this is just the start of your real estate education.
In addition to learning about real estate valuation, finance, contracts, and ethics, you’ll need to learn how to run your real estate business. This includes things like:
- Prospecting techniques
- Sales skills
- Overcoming objections from buyers and sellers
- Listing presentations
- Business systems and workflows
- Managing business income and expenses
Some brokers expect you to find this information on your own. But many will provide training opportunities through group training sessions, one-on-one sessions, or even a mentorship program. If formal training is important to you, make sure it’s something your future brokerage offers.
2. The Reputation of the Brokerage
As a new agent in South Carolina, you don’t have a history of successful transactions or a base of happy former clients. This puts you at a disadvantage when competing for business with more experienced agents. But if your brokerage has a good reputation for you to lean on, you can rely on your brokerage’s sales record rather than focusing on your own non-existent record.
Reputation is a double-edged sword. A brokerage with a mediocre or poor reputation can drag you down. So ask around to find out what citizens in your community think of the different brokerages you’re considering.
3. Ongoing Support Provided by the Brokerage
As a real estate agent, you’re effectively running your own business. And running a business requires certain support systems. You may need a conference room for a meeting with clients. Or you might need a receptionist to answer urgent phone calls when you’re unavailable.
Some brokerages leave you to your own devices, but many provide ongoing support. You might get data entry by a shared office administrator, a social media boost from the brokerage’s social media accounts, or even national advertising if you join a nationwide franchise.
As a new agent, these support services can save you the time and expense of seeking out your own support solutions.
4. The Commission Split and Fee Structure
Nearly all real estate agents in South Carolina are paid on a commission basis. This means you earn a percentage of the home’s sales price when a deal is completed. In most cases, you will split your commission with your broker.
Generally speaking, the commission split depends on the value of the services your brokerage offers. A brokerage that provides training and support will likely start new agents on a 50/50 split. And in most cases, your split increases as your sales volume increases. The more you sell, the higher your split.
But your broker might also charge monthly and/or per-transaction fees for the services they provide. If you see a brokerage offering 100% commissions, that brokerage makes its money in the form of fees.
It’s tempting to simply choose the South Carolina brokerage that offers the best commission split. But you could be missing out on valuable training services and support systems by focusing solely on the commission split. The pay structure is an important factor in choosing a broker, but don’t let it be the only factor.
5. Work Style Compatibility
Do you want a team environment where agents actively support one another? Or would you prefer to work alone, checking in with your brokerage only when necessary? Matching your work style to the company culture of your brokerage is crucial. When you have a mismatch, your work is more frustrating and less rewarding.
Ask potential brokerages about the office environment. What is expected of the agents? And what can the agents expect of the broker?
Get a Headstart on Finding Your South Carolina Real Estate Brokerage
When you’re ready to look for your South Carolina real estate brokerage, AceableAgent can help! Our new Broker Agent Matching Program is designed to help students find brokerages that will be a good fit.
Once you’ve enrolled in your South Carolina pre-license real estate course, you’ll get access to a quick survey. It will only take you a few minutes to provide your brokerage preferences, then our partnership specialist will hand-select brokerages that might be right for you. In no time, you’ll have a brokerage selected, and you’ll be ready to launch your real estate business!