Become A Realtor In Los Angeles: Do you want to be a realtor in Los Angeles? If yes, well you should know that you are on a good and very lucrative career path because becoming a realtor in Los Angeles comes with a lot of benefits since the state of California has one of the strongest real estate markets, which is only second to Washington, D.C.
The realtor market speaks volumes in terms of potential commissions based on the fact that the average home price in Los Angeles is over $600,000, and has had an 8% increase since 2018, which means it has great commission potential, but then, just like every other career, there are necessary steps to be taken to reap the maximum reward that comes with becoming a realtor in Los Angeles.
Who is a realtor?
A realtor is an agent and member of the National Association of Realtors, who help buyers purchase lands, houses, or building and sellers sell whatever property they want to sell. They act as a mediator between buyers and property owners.
Realtors are people who sellers and buyers depend on to help them achieve their goals concerning one of their biggest achievements, which is their property.
How To Become a Realtor In Los Angeles 2022
Just like every other career, there are steps, terms, conditions necessary to earn the realtor title in Los Angeles, these include being a resident of the united states, being up to 18 years, which is the standard U.S. adult age, getting the necessary certifications.
For you to fully understand what it takes to become a realtor in Los Angeles, we have to first, explore
The certifications needed to become a realtor in Los Angeles.
Certifications needed to become a licensed realtor in Los Angeles include:
- Pre-licensing Courses
- California Licensing Exam
- Salesperson License Application
#1. Pre-licensing Courses:
This is a course that prepares you for the main license training under a licensed Los Angeles broker. Retirements for the pre-licensing course include having a GED or diploma, and passing three state-approved courses of pre-licensing education, totaling 135 hours.
The pre-licensing courses include Real Estate Principles, which at the end, an exam is given, that requires a passing score of at least 70%. Applicants have a chance of taking the final exam twice.
#2. California Licensing Exam:
The California licensing exam is a 3 hours 15 minutes exam, that can only be taken after the applicant completes and passes the financial exams of the 3 courses and requires a passing score of at least 70%.
The questions usually involve subjects related to property valuation, fiduciary obligations, agency laws, financing, and more.
During the registration process, the payment of a non-refundable license fee for a salesperson exam, as well as fingerprints, is required. An applicant, after registration, is expected to choose the testing time, date, and location, which will either be in LA, Sacramento, Fresno, Oakland, or San Diego.
After that, applicants have the chance to retake the test as often as they can, if they don’t make it at the first sitting, before the two-year registration operation date, after which, they have to submit another application, along with the needed fees.
Examinees are notified of their performance as soon as the test is completed. Those who pass will be able to start their new career as an L.A realtor, but despite that, an internship under a brokerage or broker who will serve as a sponsor is required.
#3. Complete a salesperson License Application:
A salesperson license is required to be completed within one year of passing the exam, the application can be filled before or after completing and passing the license exam. Once the requirements have been received by the Department of Real Estate Examination, then the license will be issued.
How often do you need to Renew your Realtor License?
Realtors are expected to renew their license every 2 years. About 90days before the expiration date, a renewal notice will be sent.
How much does it cost to become a realtor in Los Angeles?
The non-refundable examination fee for the realtor original examination is $60, while for brokers, it’s $95. The re-examination is the same price. The first rescheduled exam is $15 for realtors and $20 for brokers, while the subsequent rescheduled examination is $30 for both realtors and brokers.
The fee for filing for both examination and license application at the same time is $60, while the license fee is $245, so the total amount to be paid, due to DRE with RE 435 is $305. The fingerprint processing fee for original license or examination applicants living both in L.A and outside L.A is $49.
Renewal of real estate license is very vital, so the early renewal payment amount for realtors is $245, while for brokers, it is $300. Then the late renewal fee for realtors is $367 and $450 do brokers.
How fast can you generate your first commission as a Realtor in Los Angeles?
To be a successful realtor, generating your first commission is key, but then you have to spend money on education, licenses, signs, ads, which is several thousand dollars worth of cost to make money.
The longer it takes to make money, the longer you’ll run out of money without any compensation.
To make money quickly, you have to go wild with advertising, tell everyone and anyone who cares to listen, both friends, family, post on all your social media platforms, etc.
You should be attentive to know when people are talking about moving, so as to let them know you are a realtor. Once you are able to close your first deal, other deals will come rolling in, through referrals, so you have to get words out.
It is advisable to find hourly work at a real estate agency to help you make an income before you are able to generate your first commission.
Whether it is marketing, advertising, or clerical work, you will be making an income and gaining experience in the right field.
Hopefully, the agency will give you space to build your own business.
What does it take to be a successful realtor in Los Angeles
The money you earn overall is based on the amount of money you get to keep after each transaction which means, you need to be watchful while spending on things like signs, advertising(which usually take a huge chunk of the profits), etc.
To make a good realtor and be able to make good sales, you have to invest in the advertisement, but wisely.
Some realtors spend money on Facebook ads and maintain an easy-to-find online presence, some invest in mailers, which are being sent out to people who might need their services in the feature.
Successful realtors create customized videos for each home buyer that can help grow their social reach.
These videos include pictures of the new houses, music, and happy new homeowners, just outside their new home.
Realtors eventually turn into brokers, hiring agents who have some worth lower cost, which of course is covered by the hiring agent, but with the lower commission since their hiring agents take a cut.
So a realtor adding agents to his or her team is one of the ways realtors add more income without extra work.
Another thing to consider is having great customer service.
Though it pays well, real estate deals are one of those deals that come every once in a while, if you have good customer service, you’ll have regular customers who will always call whenever they want to sell, even referral because the most powerful way to get a business to grow remains word of mouth.
Another way to be a successful realtor is by being in an expensive housing market, because when you sell a condo worth $150,000, you earn next to nothing, as compared to selling $500,000 to $1,000,000 worth of homes, which is much more lucrative.
How much does a realtor make in Los Angeles?
Realtors make a lot of income even more than the national average income.
Being a realtor in Los Angeles is one of the ways one can earn a six-figure income with or without a college degree, but then, a lot of people earn less than that, some even earn next to nothing, which makes them quit even before they have the chance to earn their first commission. It all depends on your perseverance and bargaining power.
Most realtors are commission-based realtors which means, most of their incomes are made only when they help buy or sell a house.
A 6 to 5% commission is being paid to a realtor whenever he or she helps to sell a house, which is being split between the selling and buying agent.
The commission is to be sheared 3% each, which is usually the common arrangement, although there is a chance that the commission can be split among more than just the buyer and the seller.
The company the realtor works for, which is the broker, may also have a cut from the commission, up to 50% for new realtors.
Realtors are also required to handle their expenses, which include professional association fees, signs, advertisements, driving customers around, etc.
So if a home is sold for 300,000, each agent can expect to get $9000 but at the end of the day go home with $4000 after expenses.
With getting so much money on each transaction, the real question is, how many transactions can a realtor complete every year? Members of the National Association of Realtors on average, complete 12 transactions each year.
Though the rule of the job is, the longer you stay in the business, the more experience and connections you gain, the more money you make, so obviously, realtor newbies will have a hard time selling more houses, meaning lower income.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that the average realtor makes $45,990 every year, although with a numerous income range. A fraction of realtors earn less than $23,000 and 10% earn more than $110,000.
Factors that affect realtors
Certain factors influence the success of a realtor and they include:
- Time: As we know, whatever you give your time to, you get better in, a realtor’s business is as good as the time and dedication he puts in. For example, a full time realtor will definitely earn more than a part-time realtor because of longer hours being put in which will lead to more sales opportunities.
- Experience: the more time one spends in the field, the more experience, skill, knowledge and connections the person gets, which leads to extensive client base, thereby leading to more earnings.
- Location: The location a realtor chooses to work in also contributes to how much the person makes, for example, if a person works with listings in the urban and suburban areas, the realtor is likely to make more money because properties in those areas are more valuable.
- Market Value: A realtor should be intuitive in reading the real estate market, to know when to close a deal and when to be patient, never hasty because the real estate market is never stable and if you are not careful, you have huge losses.
- Certification: The importance of this cannot be overemphasized because the more you upgrade, the more likely you are to be trusted with deals, so the more you learn, the more you earn.
- Good P.R: Nobody wants to work with some one who has poor attitude or manner of approach, so if you must be in the real estate business, you have to learn how to have good personal relationships with people because that’s how you build good clientele base.
- Honesty: To be a successful realtor, you have to be brutally but respectfully honest, be open as much as possible to you clients, tell the clearly what you know is attainable and what is not because if you don’t, it might affect the fast selling of the house. With honesty, you gain the trust of you clients, which will gain you more referrals.
- Understanding: As a good realtor, you should have a good understanding of people, this will help you connect with your clients. You have to understand what they want and what they do not want.
- Good publicity: If your publicity is not good enough, how will you get people to be interested in your services? So the importance of good publicity can never be overemphasized.
Why become a Los Angeles realtor?
Los Angeles is one of the biggest cities in California with a population of 3,898,747 as of 2020.
It is the second-largest city in the United States, followed by New York City. Los Angeles is known for its ethnic and cultural diversity, sprawling metropolitan area, Hollywood film industry, and Mediterranean climate.
Los Angeles has a robust and diverse economy and hosts businesses in a broad range of professional and cultural fields, also, the busiest container port in America.
Also, Los Angeles ranks as having the 19th most competitive financial center in the world and sixth-most competitive in the united states.
Los Angeles metropolitan area, as of 2018, has gross metropolitan product of more than $1.0trillion and is home to three fortune 500 companies which are CBRE GROUP, AECOM, and reliance steel and Aluminum co. as of 2018.
The largest non-governmental companies include:
- Kaiser permanent
- Northrop Grumman Crop
- University of Southern California
- Target Crop-Providence Health and Services, Sosouthern California
- Ralphs/Food 4 Less (Kroger co. Division)
- Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
- Walt Disney co.
- Allied Universal
- NBC Universal
Los Angeles is the center of the nation’s film and television industry where you have studios such as Paramount Pictures, Warner Brothers, and Universal offer behind scene tours.
TLC Chinese Theatre displays celebrities’ hands and footprints on Hollywood boulevards and thousands of luminaries are being honored in the walk of fame.
Having known all these, you should know that Los Angeles is literally a city that flows with milk and honey for realtors because you have high-profiled people trooping into the city every now and then, looking for new properties to acquire both for business and personal use.
All that is required of you as a realtor, knowing that the competition will be high, is resilience, good closing skills, dedication, talent including, attaching yourself to a reputable brokerage.
- Is there a difference between a broker, a realtor and an estate agent?
- How long does it take to become a real estate agent I Los Angeles?
- As a realtor, must I choose a brokerage agency?
Is there a difference between a broker a realtor and an estate agent?
Well, they are all licensed pros who help people rent, buy or sell homes. Despite being closely similar, they have very slight differences especially when it has to do with their qualifications and which professional ladder they occupy.
- Brokers are also real estate agents who have gone through additional trainings and licensing requirements. At this point, they can work independently or hire real estate agents to work with them.
- Realtor: A realtor is a licensed real estate broker, agent or other real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of Realtors(NAR) and complies strictly to the code of ethics.
- Real Estate Agents: Are professionally licensed to help people sell or buy properties and are expected to work for a sponsoring brokerage firm.
How long does it take to become a realtor in Los Angeles?
It takes between five to six months on average, to get a realtor license in California but then it also depends on how fast and smart the individual is in going through the processes.
As a realtor, must I choose a brokerage agency?
If you want to grow faster in the business without wasting so much time on making mistakes while trying to find your way around, then yes you have to. Apart from the fact that you get to gain more training, you also stand a chance of getting base payments and so many other benefits.
Becoming a realtor in Los Angeles this 2022 will be a step in the right direction as long as you are able to put in the hard work, because, truth be told, it is not going to be a “walk in the park”. We hope that the information provided, that it helps to equip you as you work toward making your dream of becoming a realtor in Los Angeles a reality.