Posted 19 June 2017 - 10:25 PM
I hold a license to sell real estate. It's expired though. I got it because when we bought our first house, we bought it through the listing agent, and she offered me a job as her administrative assistant. She was a well established agent who liked to travel a lot, so she had her assistant do a lot of showings for her, which requires a license in our state.
It wasn't hard to get the license. Granted, this was sixteen years ago, but it was simply two classes, each 30 hours, with tests at the end of each. I took them simultaneously, three hours a day total, four days a week, five weeks. Then I took an exam (which I found easy to pass) and had our cooperating broker agree to take me on.
At the time, there were two models of agent. One was that you kept all of your earnings but paid rent, your own marketing supplies, etc. That's how our office worked, and it was better once you got well established. The other model was to give a set percentage of your earnings to your broker's office, but they would cover your expenses. This was nicer for newbies. My boss treated me like the latter. I got all of her lower priced buyers (under 200K -- this was in major wealthy suburbs), and she walked me thorough the process, and kept a percentage of my earnings. It was a win-win.
Now, to make money, you have to work pretty hard. Yes, hours are flexible, but you also have to be willing to work evenings and weekends because that's what people have available. People are picky, and you have to understand what they're saying without them actually saying it. You have to be continually trying to market yourself and find new clients. You might list a house, show it a bunch of times, and then have your sellers decide not to sell after all, which means you may not get paid. Or you may spend a lot of time with buyers before they find The One. Otoh, sometimes listings sell really quickly, or the buyers are sweet and easy. It helps to be somewhat assertive because you'll need to represent your clients' best interests, but you also have to be level headed because some other agents are snakes. It helps to be a people person because you're always going to need to have contacts for mortgages, inspections, etc. A good agent really makes the move to a new area easier. I know ours did several times. It is fun to see different houses and picture a family in them.
I liked the job okay, but it didn't bother me to leave when I had my daughter. I don't know that I'd go back to it, but I'm very introverted and have no desire to make small talk with people I don't know well. If you enjoy meeting new people, you might really like it.