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2 Must-Have Resources for Every New Real Estate Agent

March 16 2020

One of the hardest things to get accustomed to, for many new agents, is the fact that they no longer have a boss.

That's a good thing in many ways. But it also means that you are responsible for everything that happens in your business.

You are your own boss; you now own a small business and every penny that you make will be the result of your efforts.

So lose the employee mentality and get to work gathering the critical resources you'll need to get your new business off to a roaring start.


house moneyRight out of the gate, if your broker is a member of the National Association of REALTORS®, you will need to join as well. But this involves obtaining membership in your local association first. Then you'll be a member of both the state and national associations, all with their own set of dues and fees.

One Nevada agent we spoke with calculated that his association dues as a beginning agent (including MLS fees) would run him close to $1,500. Your mileage may vary, but be prepared for this huge expense as soon as you land at a broker's office.

Then, there are desk fees (if your broker charges them), money to market your new business, and a plethora of other money sucks.

Business cards

business cardMany brokerages will give you a box of business cards when you first start with them. Naturally, these business cards are brokerage-branded. So if you work for Keller Williams, Redfin or another broker, that name will be prominent on your business card.

Free advertising for someone else's brand – it's genius, but don't fall for it just because it's free. Politely decline the offer and go about creating your own business cards.

In 2020 and beyond, minimalism reigns. Keep the card uncluttered and free of useless information (such as your address and a fax number). Here is what your card should include:

  • Your name
  • Title
  • Best phone number to reach you
  • Email address
  • Website URL (list only the domain name, such as
  • Logo, if you have one
  • License number, if required by your state

Should you include your photo on your business card? Those for and against the practice offer good arguments so it's hard to pick sides.

We would be remiss, however, if we didn't let you know about the results of an informal study of the practice.

Adjunct professor and attorney Eric Bryn's group of researchers mailed 2,000 nearly identical postcards. The message on each was identical, but 1,000 real estate postcards included a photo of an agent and the other 1,000 did not.

The mailing resulted in a 10 percent response rate and all 200 responses were to the postcards without a photo.

Professor Bryn used the same technique on other types of real estate agent marketing, including business cards. Each time, the pieces without the photo outperformed the pieces with a photo.

Sure, there are many additional tools and resources every new agent should consider including in their new business. These two, however, are the most critical.