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2007-09-04 08:00:00

The 40 Most Important Questions for Your Real Estate Interview

Jim Hogan, ABR, DREIHere are the most important questions to ask when interviewing for a real estate position. Treat the interviews as an opportunity to find out as much as you can about starting your own business in conjunction with the company.

  • I am interested in real estate sales. What are my opportunities with your company?
  • Do you have a training program?

a.)  Is it company sponsored? Can I sit in on a session? Look over the materials?

b.)  Is there additional help offered (if needed) and by whom? Explain.

c.)  What is the cost of this program? Is it reimbursable? Will I be obligated to remain with the company for a specified period of time to take advantage of a no-charge type of training?

  • What kind of management and systems support do you have?
  • Explain office staffing and scheduling.
  • Do your managers sell real estate?
  • What are your compensation plans?
  • Would I be paid as an employee or an independent contractor?

a.)  If an independent contractor, may I have a copy of your independent contractor agreement?

b.)  What makes your independent contractor agreement different?

  • Realistically, what is my income potential? First year? Thereafter?
  • How long is a reasonable time to wait before expecting some income, if devoting full time to real estate?
  • Expenses:

a.)  Who pays for such needed items as cards, advertising, signs, name rider, etc.?

b.)  What are the expected initial out-of-pocket costs upon beginning with your company?

  • What real estate professional organizations (MLS, Association of REALTORS, etc.) would I be expected to join

a.)  What are the costs associated with these organizations?

b.)  Why are these organizations important?

  • Do you have specific requirements for a salesperson’s car? If so, what are they? What about insurance?
  • What are the tools that I need to have in order to be competitive? (Computer, cell phone, pager, etc.)
  • Describe your “technology.” Hardware, software, copiers, and fax machines.
  • What is your web site address?
  • What consumer services do you offer online?
  • Would I have a presence on your web site? (Note: Visit the web site prior to the interview.)
  • Is “floor time” available and what time obligations/opportunities would I have?
  • Open Houses: In order to get a quick start, may I sit on someone else’s listing to acquaint myself with the business and to get prospective buyers?
  • Advertising:

a.)  What does the company pay for?

b.)  What do I pay for?

  • What is the average sales price for your company and/or branch office?
  • If I personally buy or sell my own property, what is the company’s policies?
  • Does your firm have special requirements on dress and grooming?
  • Are there some agents I could talk with about the company?
  • What are the three top reasons I should join your company?

(Jim Hogan has been a REALTOR® since 1971. He is also a mortgage broker and investor. As an educator, he has helped “billions” begin and sustain successful real estate careers. His door is always open to anyone with a question or seeking advice. He and Curtis Hall developed the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council’s “Innovative Marketing for Buyer Representatives,” course and teach Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR) designation classes throughout Arizona, California and Hawaii. Jim was one of the first educators to be awarded the Real Estate Educators Association’s Distinguished Real Estate Instructor (DREI) designation. In 2002 Jim was inducted into the REBAC Hall of Fame. He is one of the founding members of RealtyU, a national consortium of over 40 real estate schools and as a singer/songwriter recently released his first CD.) 

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