Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

Financial Hacks for Real Estate Agents That Haven’t Created Their Niche

Being in real estate is an expensive job. You read that right. In my experience and watching fellow agents travel in and out the office – I’ve seen that the job pays well (on occasion) but is an expensive occupation to maintain. That is why I wanted to dedicate this article to helping YOU lower your costs of working real estate if you are:

*DISCLAIMER: These tips were identified by me after shadowing and speaking to agents within my office.

1. A Student

2. Live outside of the city

3. Are new to the area/From out of state

4. Fresh to the commission business.

Let’s get started.

Come to Boston as Needed

As a real estate agent, that pretty much means that you are working independently to generate your own leads and work with your own clients without any immediate supervision. This also entails the freedom to work where ever you please. If you are not in the financial situation to be able to make frequent trips to Boston, I would suggest only making trips to Boston on designated property showings that you set up. The Commuter Rail also has a $10 weekend pass that you should take advantage of, if you want to get to know the city better.

Knock Knock, It’s the Commuter Rail

Speaking of the commuter rail, one of the first things you should be aware of, is the public transportation system in your area. If you are lucky enough to have a car in the City of Boston, you can scroll past this tip. If you are like most of us who do not own a car in Boston, keep reading. The commuter rail is accessible via many different cities and towns in Massachusetts, which will take you directly into Boston. This will be your main mode of transportation to get into the city! Using the commuter rail will save you the cost of parking and the stress of traffic from driving to and from Boston.

Anybody say, cars available for rent?

Once in Boston, assuming that you either do not own a vehicle or do not want to drive your vehicle in to Boston – I’ve got you covered. If you are a student – great! You are eligible for ZipCar’s student plan, which charges you $5 a year to use their service. If you are no longer a student, the charge is $7 a month or $70 a year (Still very affordable!). Of course, this is additional to the hourly rate of using a ZipCar. This service will be a life saver in getting you from point A to point B with your client. Be aware that if your ZipCar isn’t at its assigned location, you can always call their customer service to transfer you to another vehicle.

Time is Money

It probably goes to show that first impressions matter. And arriving early, definitely sets the tone for your relationship with your client. But if you’ve followed my advice thus far and you’re taking the train into Boston, the timing will likely not be in your favor. That’s why I would suggest taking the earlier train as opposed to cutting it close to your showing time. Account for the train stop that is the closest to your showing location or ZipCar, and spend time in a Starbucks working on your other clients. When you plan your time accordingly, you end up saving on your opportunity costs!

The Essentials

Being a real estate agent is a lot of work, so you need to know how to take care of yourself. Luckily, Starbucks, Tasty Burger, and many other vendors offer free water. Train Stations such as South Station and Back Bay station also have public bathrooms that are cleaned regularly. Remember, working independently does not mean you have to break your back!