UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | A real estate agent, also known as a broker in Uganda, assists people with the process of buying, selling, and renting land and properties. While it sounds simple on the surface, there is a big difference between those that make it, and those that don’t.
Real estate agents usually work on commission, but how much one may earn varies widely. Recent research done in 2021 shows that real estate agents and property managers in Uganda earn a monthly salary between USh585,614 to USh4,000,045 per month for a working week of 48 hours. The higher end of the range is usually achieved after 5 years of service and experience.
Here are some of the duties a real estate agent will perform:
- Gathers information about properties to be sold or leased
- Compares similar properties in the area in order to determine fair and competitive market prices
- Advises sellers on how they can make their properties more attractive to buyers
- Solicits potential clients to buy, sell, and rent properties
- Shows properties to be sold or leased to prospective buyers or tenants, and explains the terms of sale or the conditions of rent or lease
- Presents purchase offers to sellers for consideration
- Facilitates negotiations with tenants and owners on rents and fees
- Draws up leasing and sale agreements and estimates costs
- Arranges signing of lease agreements and transfers of property rights
- Collects rent and bond monies on behalf of owners
- Inspects properties before, during and after tenancies
- Ensures the availability of workers to perform maintenance and/or repairs of the properties
Real estate agents have to remain in the know of current real estate laws and regulations, keep up to date with market trends, and also be an expert on the local areas in which they operate.
With this in consideration, here are Real Muloodi News Network’s tips for maximising your success as a real estate agent;
Get Professional Training
To be successful in this industry, it is important to acquire the necessary knowledge for how to perform the duties listed above, and to grow professionally.
The Real Estate Institute of East Africa (REIEA), is the training arm of the Association of Real Estate Agents in Uganda. REIEA offers education programs designed to improve performance, efficiency and effectiveness of real estate practitioners to meet international standards.
REIEA gives an opportunity to those without an education in real estate to get professional training.
Don’t Focus Just on Selling
Everyone wants to land that sale, however it is a common practice among agents to be pushy, which can put clients off. If you want a successful career in the real estate industry, consider yourself a consultant rather than a salesperson. You will go a lot further if you can gain the trust and confidence of your clients.
Focus on your soft skills. These include people skills, relationship building and problem-solving, which are some of the top abilities that real estate agents need.
If your clients have a good experience with you, not only will they come back to you in the future, they are likely to refer you to their friends, family and colleagues. Clients referred to you by a trusted party will be more inclined to trust you and your expertise, which leads to more positive interactions and better results.
Additionally, referral business often yields motivated buyers and sellers, which increases the likelihood of completed transactions in a shorter timeframe.
It is critical to build strong relationships and to expand your sphere of influence to build your client base. Such a network will guarantee you work. Start with the people you already know, including family, friends, alumni, neighbours and even your boda guy, then grow bigger.
Join the Association of Real Estate Agents in Uganda (AREA-U). The Association also provides important networking opportunities with other Association members, many of whom are seasoned practitioners in the industry.
Victoria Nannozi, Chief Executive Officer at AREA-U, explains that AREA-U helps you become part of a larger broker community.
”You get to network and ask each other questions. One broker may say ‘I have a customer who wants land in such and such a place’ and describes the kind of land that the person wants. And then if someone has it, they’ll negotiate and enter into a business agreement” she says.
Victoria says AREA-U brings together all practitioners in the real estate sector; brokers, agents, property managers, developers, and landlords, with the aim to unites members and grow the industry to boost real estate businesses in Uganda.
“We have everyone, including some of the very big players, and everyone is super willing to hold each other’s hands to help them grow in the particular area that they’re interested in,” she says.
Develop a Business Plan
Many new real estate agents focus only on getting clients and making sales, but it is essential to know where you are heading. This is where a business plan comes in.
To set your real estate business off in the right direction, start by understanding your strengths and weaknesses, and what you want to achieve.
You can carry out a SWOT analysis, which is a strategic planning technique used to help a person identify their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to business competition and planning.
What type of real estate do you want to sell? Perhaps you’ll specialise in condos? What about commercial real estate? What about vacant land? You don’t have to pick only one, but you should analyse your target real estate market and try to determine where the greatest opportunities are. What sections are hot, what sections have slowed down, and what niche does the market need filled?
After examining the real estate market, examine your competition. Knowing who is doing what and how well they are performing will help you identify niches that are underserved, as well as which sectors are saturated with agents competing with each other.
Give careful thought about what you are good at, what you are passionate about, and what the market needs. The overlap of these categories is your answer.
Work on Your Professional Image
A professional image and presence is fundamental to your success as a real estate agent. Your image is projected through your:
- Appearance – neat, clean professional clothing, hair and accessories. Business attire. Avoid revealing clothing (i.e., nothing too tight, too short or too low cut).
- Face-to-face meetings – maintain good eye contact. Strive to be attentive, engaging and courteous.
- Marketing and advertising materials – take quality photos and write accurate, compelling listing descriptions. Should be free of grammatical and spelling mistakes.
- Phone calls – be articulate, engaging and courteous. Return messages.
- Web presence – a carefully planned web site, and an engaging social media presence makes all the difference. Should be free of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.
- Written communications – well-written emails and texts free of slang, grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.
Don’t forget that any presence you have on the Internet – both in your business and in your personal life – lasts forever and can easily find its way to your potential clients. Therefore, be judicious to work toward a professional image both in and out of your real estate career.
Ensure Proper Management of Your Contacts
As an agent, your client relationships are the key to your success.
No two clients are the same. Some clients require constant communication while others need to be constantly pushed to take action. Documenting each individual clients’ concerns and quirks helps you to personalise your approach and establish and nurture a much-needed sense of trust.
It makes more sense to prioritise clients with the highest levels of interest (desperate to sell or buy) or with the biggest budget than to focus on no-shows who are dragging their feet. Identify your most lucrative relationships so you can prioritise your communication and better manage your time (think: follow-up calls and emails).
However, until you organise your contacts list, making the distinction between those opportunities is like a guessing game. Therefore, centralise your clients and contacts into a succinct, segmented list so won’t loose track of important client details.
Here are some parameters to help you make distinctions between your contacts:
- Contact Source: (referral, opt-in, social media, etc.)
- Date of initial contact
- Has financing, yes/no
- Status (client, prospect, pending etc.)
- Special notes (specific needs, fears, concerns, personality quirks etc.)
You can do this in a spreadsheet, or better yet, in a CRM software. Real Muloodi News recommends HubSpot CRM – it is free, relatively easy to use, and allows you to sync your emails, set follow up reminders, log calls and meetings, track deals, and goes a long way to keeping you organised and setting you up for success.
If you have real estate related news that you would like featured on Real Muloodi News Network, reach out to us via email at [email protected]
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