The First Lesson in Real Estate – Do Your Homework!

by Peter Thomas Ricci

My journey to becoming a licensed real estate broker and finding my way was filled with many decisions – and not all of them were good ones. As a fairly new agent, though, I learned quite a bit along the way.

My main piece of advice, prior to hanging your license anywhere, is “DO YOUR HOMEWORK.”

Great Expectations

Many brokerages present themselves as state of the art and filled with opportunity – but when you get there, you quickly realize they are none of those things. The agent computer doesn’t work; the managing broker may close more deals than anyone in the office; “good” leads are only given to a select few; and finally, you find yourself in a situation where you have a very hefty split, and taking a lead leaves you with little to no income and an empty gas tank.

Ironically, I started comparing notes to my fellow Realtors within the office, just to find their experience was quite similar to mine. I think back and realize I could have saved myself a great deal of heartache, time and money if I had only done my homework.

Doing Your Real Estate Homework

A good rule of thumb is to spend the same amount of time researching the brokerage you’re interested in as you did taking your real estate classes, prepping for your exam and getting your license. Because I did that, I now work for a professional office with an awesome managing broker and a state-of-the-art office. It’s been everything it was presented to me and more. Interview as many Realtors as you can that work within the brokerage; you’ll be surprised what you find out just by asking.

Also, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Always remember, you’re the CEO of your own business. The decision you make today impacts your success tomorrow.


Pamela Peterson is a broker associate with RE/MAX Action in Lisle. She can be contacted at:

Office: 1550 Maple, Lisle 60532

Office Phone: 1-800-276-2600

Cell Phone: 1-630-803-9554

Email: [email protected]

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