While a lot of real estate agents have always had the option to work from home, the current health crisis has left almost everyone with no option but to exclusively operate from their home office. However, businesses like the real estate industry thrive on cultivating a strong relationship with clients, and this can be harder to do in a work from home set up. This arrangement has its own unique challenges, and real estate agents need to do their part to stay productive and make working as comfortable and efficient as possible.
With that being said, we've listed below the dos and don’ts that real estate agents need to keep in mind while working from home.
Do Learn How to Sell Remotely
These days, it’s significantly more challenging for real estate professionals to make a sale. Keller Williams NYC salesperson David Kong notes that this is due in part to the safety directives, which have discouraged buyers from attending open houses. However, the demand for houses and properties hasn’t disappeared — and real estate agents should know what to do to secure their clients remotely. For one, consider holding meetings and consultations through video call programs like Zoom and Skype to fully grasp what clients need and even provide a virtual tour of prospective houses. If the budget permits, real estate agents can even offer remote 3D tours of property listings. Doing this can maximize your chances to secure a sale.
Do Set Work Boundaries
The great thing about working from home is being able to spend more time with your family. However, being enclosed with your kids during your workdays can make you lose your focus — dragging down your performance as a real estate agent and making you feel like an inattentive parent. This is why HP’s guide to working from home with kids recommends setting work boundaries and keeping your kids entertained with learning tools. Discuss with your kids that your working hours are meant exclusively for work, and equip them with fun learning tools to keep them from distracting you.
Do Expand Your Knowledge
Real estate agents who have extra time on their hands can focus on improving their skills. Admittedly, the health crisis has impacted all industries, and losses are a common sight. Because of this, agents need to gain a better grasp on the different aspects of their business to keep short-term losses to a minimum. One way to do this is by enrolling in webinars and online courses in related topics like how to navigate and use social media websites. Entrepreneur points out that social media holds a number of opportunities for real estate agents, like diversifying your network, boosting web traffic, and increasing visibility, so mastering this skill during these precarious times can prove to be useful for you.
Don’t Forget to Take Breaks
It can be easy to lose track of time when working from home. As the lines between your work and personal lives are blurred, it’s pretty common to see real estate agents working longer hours and forgetting to take their breaks. To set yourself up for success, it’s important to use your breaks to provide yourself with momentary respite from work. Use this time to nourish yourself with delicious snacks or alleviate stress through breathing exercises, as noted by Healthline’s guide to breathing techniques.
Don’t Work in a Communal Area
The importance of your own personal work area inside the house cannot be stressed enough. More than anyone, real estate agents know that having a personal home office is a major selling point for buyers who work from their homes. Working in a communal space inside your house is a bad idea due to the amount of distractions that you might encounter. So, it goes without saying that real estate agents who work from home need to invest in quality workspace furniture and create a work area that’s comfortable and free from any distractions.
Don’t Skip Useful Apps
Real estate agents who work from home can better streamline their work by using the right tools. As technology makes it possible for buyers to look for prospective homes using phone applications, they also expect communication to happen on the same or similar platforms. One app that brings sellers and buyers together is Xome. Through Xome, real estate agents can feature properties and engage with prospective buyers. Moreover, a real estate agent cannot live without a customer relationship management (CRM) tool — and CRM tools like Hubspot CRM are the perfect programs for real estate agents who work from home, as they allow you to stay in touch with leads, optimize schedules, and organize your contacts.