The Top 10 Mistakes New (And Seasoned) Real Estate Agents Make

10 Costly Real Estate Agent Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

In today’s post, I share with you the top 10 real estate agent mistakes I see made most often. Check to make sure you’re not doing these, whether you’re a new real estate agent or a seasoned real estate professional. I even made most of these mistakes myself at some point in my career.

By understanding and fixing these mistakes, you can speed up the time it takes to be a top-producing agent.

Throughout my career in real estate, I’ve been 100% focused on making my business more efficient. After correcting these missteps, I’ve been able to sell more homes in less time, year after year.

1. Not Setting Up A Business Plan 

Too many agents work harder and not smarter, especially early on. Instead of sitting down and sketching out a plan for what we want out of business, we start working. I’ve found that just jumping in almost always produces negative results in the long run if you don’t establish a plan first.

For this reason, one of the first steps you should take as a new agent is to write down a business plan to guide you throughout your real estate career. Your plan should cover everything from marketing, lead generation, branding, social media, and your money-earning and other financial goals.

Check out my post on creating your real estate business plan to learn more about how to create the perfect plan.

Someone looking at graphs and charts on a laptop

2. Not Giving Lead Generation Enough Time to Work 

So many times (especially when we don’t have a good business plan), we start a lead-generation program or strategy and don’t see it through to the end. We keep it up for a month or two, and then stop because it doesn’t produce the early, immediate results we so often desire. 

I even put off working my sphere of influence and referral business early on because I didn’t see it produce results quickly enough. 

But ending your lead generation strategy early can cost you money and opportunities to win prospective buyers.

I’ve found that you can only judge the effectiveness of a lead generation strategy after doing it consistently for six months to a year. 

In addition, it’s better to spend your time on methods that will get you quality leads, like your sphere of influence and referrals, even if it seems slower in the beginning. 

I made the mistake of focusing on internet leads such as Zillow leads and social media because I saw how “fast” I could get leads from it. However, internet leads cost more money, and the quality of the leads is much lower. 

This will cause you to spend time qualifying your leads, when you could be using that time to make local connections within your community. 

This is why today, 90% of my business comes from my sphere of influence and referrals.

3. Over Analyzing And Not Taking Action

Often, real estate agents will spend too much time over-analyzing and researching different options. In reality, the choice you make is not as significant as taking action. And even if it’s the wrong choice, it’ll give you an opportunity to learn from your mistakes. 

You need to allow yourself the ability to fail or make corrections as you go. Nobody has it all figured out when they start, so just begin with as much information as you need to get going, and then continue to learn as you grow.

In the end, you’ll learn more by being decisive rather than hesitating to make a choice for fear it’s the wrong one.

A man picking up the phone. One of the most common real estate agent mistakes is not being available to answer the phone

4. Not Picking Up The Phone

Not picking up the phone applies to both inbound and outbound calls. Cold calling is definitely still a great method of finding your next potential buyer. The best months I ever have in real estate are the ones directly after I spend a large amount of time on the phone. 

Making outbound calls leads to callback and referral calls. You should be on the phone as much as physically possible (especially when you’re a new Realtor) to capture these leads for your real estate business.

For the times when you can’t be there, you can use an automatic text or message responder so that your lead doesn’t feel ignored and knows you will get back to them. Many CRM and lead generation platforms have these types of tools.

5. Not Tracking Efforts And Results Daily 

If you aren’t tracking your efforts daily as well as your weekly results to see how those efforts are paying off, you will have no idea how effective they are. 

Tracking is also important to keep up with all the strategies you are implementing in your business. It’s easy to get caught up thinking you are doing more than you are, especially as a newbie agent. 

It takes you a little more time to track what you are doing with regards to making outbound dials, setting appointments, real estate marketing, sending hand-written cards, but make sure you follow it to have the most success.

A CRM system can help you track every marketing effort, real estate transaction, and touchpoint with your current and past clients.

Need to find a good starting CRM system? Read my post on the eight best free real estate CRM systems.

6. Not Being Consistent In Lead Generation And Prospecting 

A lack of consistency is one of the most prevalent real estate agent mistakes. No matter what lead generation strategies you decide to pursue in your real estate business, they won’t produce the results you desire if you aren’t doing them consistently. 

Consistency coupled with tracking will help you determine if the strategy is ultimately worth keeping up.

Consistency is easiest when you keep your goals narrow and focused.

It’s better to stick with one to two lead generation strategies that you know you can manage, rather than doing many strategies and spreading yourself out too thin. When you do this, it isn’t sustainable and you run the risk of burning out.

A real estate agent sitting at a table with a couple

7. Discounting Their Services To Friends And Family 

This is one of the most common marketing mistakes that new agents make early on in their careers. Typically your first clients are friends and family. If you give them discounted rates on your services early on, you don’t give your business the legs to stand on that it needs to succeed. 

You also set a precedent for other friends and family down the road that you will NOT be able to break. Make up for not giving a discount by providing exceptional service and a meaningful closing gift

This excellent service and earning your full commission will go a long way for them and your growing business!

8. Focusing Too Much Time On Social Media 

Social media is great, but when you focus all your efforts on it, it can backfire. I like to use social media to stay top-of-mind for clients, friends, and family. 

I don’t use it as my primary lead generation strategy or expect to pull all my business just by sending messages, commenting, and liking people’s posts. Limit yourself to less than an hour a day on social media, and be sure to use that time wisely. 

Create a blog post or YouTube video, reach out to people you haven’t spoken with in a while, comment on other agents’ posts, then get off. Scrolling the feed is the worst distraction ever! 

Not only that, but The Verge writes how passively scrolling the news feed makes you feel worse about yourself.

9. Time Management

Be sure to manage your time effectively and create a routine for yourself. Using a time-blocked calendar can help.

Too many agents don’t manage their time effectively. And in the real estate industry, this will end up making you feel like you never have enough time to accomplish anything.

In reality, the time is there. You just have to plan and manage your use of it wisely.

A real estate agent holding his head in his hands

10. Trying To Do Too Many Things

The more simple you keep your business, the more sales you will make. Identify what moves the needle in your business and focus your time and efforts there. 

Don’t get distracted by all the noise out there. Don’t be tempted to try too many new things. Instead, stay in your chosen lane and stick to your original business plan!

Final Thoughts on Real Estate Agent Mistakes 

Are you guilty of one or two of these real estate agent mistakes? A career in real estate is a long-term process of finding out what works for you. 

Don’t stress if you have to make a few adjustments. Some of these mistakes can only be fixed after you experience them first-hand. 

At the end of the day, the simple fact that you are here reading this post, trying to improve your business, shows you have what it takes to be a successful real estate agent!

Read More:

Something that’s not really a mistake but just a question I see agents ask all the time is can a real estate agent can buy their own listing. The answer might surprise you, go check it out.

Share in the comments below which of these real estate agent mistakes you need to work on. Are there any mistakes you currently feel you are making that I didn’t put on the list?

Kyle Handy

Would You Like To Partner With Me?

I’ve helped hundreds of real estate agents, team leaders, & brokers all over the country increase their sales, online presence, and create scalable systems. I would love the opportunity to work with you. Together, we can make this year your best yet!

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