It is with great amusement that I read an article in today’s Realtor Magazine email newsletter. The article, which I will excerpt below, offers suggestions and advice to Realtors dealing with market slowdowns.
For career real estate agents in the business for the long haul, a slower, “down” market is beneficial to our careers longterm. Two things happen when markets slow down; 1) the “pretenders” (fair weather agents) fall out of the business and 2) the remaining agents gain market share and credibility. We’re cranking up our advertising, doubling up on marketing expenses, and powering through the slowdown. There is no other alternative I would consider.
But what does Realtor Magazine suggest agents do during a slowdown? Let’s have a look.
From Realtor Magazine Online
Practitioners Dig Up New Revenue
Rather than flee the real estate industry due to the housing downturn, experts say real estate practitioners should use their skills and experience to offer services outside of buying and selling homes to supplement their incomes.
Steve’s Comment: Uhh, excuse me. Who are these “experts”? Wouldn’t said skills and experience preclude the need to seek outside income?
They could write about the real estate market for newspapers and blogs; sell advertising space on a neighborhood Web site, newsletter, or blog that they create to local businesses; become a licensed appraiser; or provide tours of the local area to visitors.
Steve’s Comment: Uhhm, as a real estate washout, from what level of experience and authority would the the agent be writing? Wouldn’t people rather read what successful agents have to say? And becoming an appraiser?…if the market is slow, there is already a glut of experienced appraisers with fewer homes to appraise. How would obtaining an appraiser’s license be a smart career move? And giving visitor tours?…you must be kidding!
Additionally, agents can supplement their income by helping businesses with search engine marketing, translating their Web sites and marketing materials to target foreigners, and subleasing office space for meetings and other events.
Steve’s Comment: Uhh, if the agent was good at search engine marketing, maybe they wouldn’t be washing out of the real estate business. Why would a business hire a real estate agent to do web and seo work. Wouldn’t they hire a web programmer and an experienced search engine optimization expert?
Finally, practitioners could serve as consultants to banks looking to sell foreclosed properties, rental firms interested in filling vacant units, and consumers preparing to relocate.
Steve’s Comment: Uh, again, I’m confused. A consultant is usually an expert in their field of endeavor, not someone recently washed out of a related field. I own a Rental Firm. Why would I need consulting advice from someone who can’t sell real estate?
Jeez, I’m embarrassed that our Realtor industry publishes this sort of useless drivel. This crap must be dreamed up by some intern in the back room. I expect better than this from an industry trade publication.
The best advice for a struggling agent is to simply get busy with lead generation efforts, or get out of the business. Goofing around with a bunch of side jobs is the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard of. Go find something less cyclical that’s easier to do.
Nowhere in the article is it mentioned that a down market is in fact a fantastic opportunity to build your real estate business.