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Becoming a Successful Realtor

How to Become a Successful Realtor?

Counting the Costs

Making a commitment to a career in real estate also includes a number of financial considerations. Licensing course fees, licensing fees and a number of business related expenses (cell phone, computer, etc.) are just a few of the expenses you will need to consider.


Real estate is a demanding profession with high standards. Those standards are maintained through comprehensive education and experience requirements, and supported by the services of several organizations at the provincial and local real estate board levels.

The following is an overview of some of the costs associated with a career in real estate:

Licensing Fees
Program/Service Organization Fee
Licensing Course
(Real Estate Trading Services Licensing Course)
Real Estate Division, Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia $1075
Licensing Course
(Residential Trading Services Applied Practice Course or the Commercial Trading Services Applied Practice Course)
British Columbia Real Estate Association $875
Licensing fee and assessments Real Estate Council of British Columbia $450
Errors and Omissions Insurance $700
Real Estate Compensation Fund Corporation $100
Total start-up licensing fee: $3200
Every two years after start-up: $1250

Real Estate Council of BC
Fees updated July 2018, and are subject to change. Note: GST not included.

Member Fees
Fee Descriptions
Entrance (new member) fees Fee
Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) $100
British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) $495
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) $200
GST $39.75
Total new member fees $834.75
Annual Dues Fee
REBGV $468
BCREA $144
CREA $310
GST $46.10
Total annual fees $968.10
Total start-up and annual fees $1,802.85

Fees updated July 2018, and are subject to change.

Other Expenses:

You may also consider the following to assist in your new profession:

  •   Contact management software 
  •   Mentor/Coaching 
  •   Website 
  •   Promotional and marketing materials
  •   Business attire

A reserve to cover your costs while you develop your client base.


It’s no secret that getting your real estate license is relatively easy compared to other professions. However, it is even easier to fail in this business with an average of 87% new real estate agents quitting in the first five years. Unfortunately, having a real estate license isn’t going to prepare you to face the reality of being a real estate agent. 


Deciding whether you should join a team or go at it alone will have a significant impact on your success. 

For many, working with a team can be a remarkable business model, as it can provide a hands-on learning experience. While for others, working solo may make more sense, depending on your short and long-term goals. 

Growth of a Solo Agent

Your number one objective: build-up a healthy client base and nurture those relationships over time. A lot of your time is spent prospecting, cold calling and networking to gain both new and referral business. If it’s done right, you should be able to measure the growth of your business precisely. After being in business for a while, this may become too much to handle for a single agent. 

When you work on your own, you might find yourself doing a lot of tasks all by yourself. Eventually, if you want to grow your business, certain tasks will need to be handed off to someone to free up your time to work on money making activities vs. administrative tasks. To grow past this point, you can either invest in an assistant or consider joining a team to take the upfront monthly cost of an assistant away. Essentially, if you can’t find more time in your day, your wage will hit a ceiling.

After a while, many seasoned agents start thinking about turning a corner and think about simplifying their business. Joining a team can eliminated the challenges of running a business, and it can allow you to only focus on working with clients. This means more time for work/life balance. A 40-hour work week becomes not only attainable, but maintainable. 

Growth of an Agent on a Team

The growth of an agent on a team looks a lot different than that of a solo agent. Starting your own real estate business can be costly both in terms of time and money. When you remove these investments of time and money, you get to focus on perfecting your skills as an agent – new or already existing. How? See the 4 main ways noted below:

1) Leads & Appointments – In real estate school they rarely teach about how to find a client or what is the most efficient marketing strategy. Both new and experiences in the industry know it can be a bit of a challenge to get some traction with generating leads. Joining a team can be the fastest way to earning a commission cheque because you are assigned clients that are ready to buy/sell right away.  It can take many months, sometimes even years, to get established as a solo agent and for your marketing to start turning into real pay cheques. 

The Internet has changed real estate as we know it. Joining a team that is technology savvy and has fine-honed the art of attracting home buyers/sellers by providing a user-friendly website and by creating expert real estate advice is key. The combination of a great user experience and an education-based approach has created a massive inflow of leads, which is why Realtors on teams fast track success. 

2) Lower Business Expenses - Anyone who has been in real estate for a while understands that the monthly costs add up very fast. A team, at no extra cost, will usually provide the website, lockboxes, business cards, a CRM system, business plan, printed and online marketing, listing signage/photos/videos/floor plans and brochures. In addition, administrative staff will be accessible to all team members. They will have procedures and systems already in place for you to provide the best service to your client. Not to mention, when you have great administration helping with attention to detail, your client is more likely to offer you as a referral to friends, family and co-workers. 

3) Coaching & Education - One of the most valuable things a team can offer is its leader. Having a coach for free teach you from their many years of experience in relationship building, negotiating and time management can set you up for an amazing career. Yup you read that right…when you join a team, you will get FREE Real Estate coaching!! For most team owners, it took a long time with many trials and errors to figure out what works or not. You, as an agent, get to work, listen and get advice from top agents in the field who have weathered the storm through the good, bad and ugly of any market. Learning from your own mistakes is great but learning from OTHERS mistakes is priceless. Continuing education in a team atmosphere is the best opportunity to enhance the skills that you need to have to become a successful real estate agent. Learn from the best and you will be the best. 

4) Accountability - Remember, one of the best things about being a real estate agent is that you don’t have to be accountable to anyone. At the same time, the worst thing about being a real estate agent is that you don't have to be accountable to anyone. This can result in a lack of motivation and income. 

When you join a real estate team, it is expected that you will be held accountable for the work that you do. Those who work in a team setting, naturally end up discussing and brainstorming solutions to each other's challenges while the team acts as a support base. One of the benefits of working with a real estate team is that it tends to have a “one for all, all for one” philosophy. You can receive a lot of support from others, at the same time you should be prepared to pull your weight and contribute to the overall success of the team.

A quote from a well-respected real estate coach greatly sums up the purpose of accountability.  “When small actions are performed consistently, it produces great results”— Real Estate Coach, Richard Robbins

Final Thoughts

Operating under the umbrella of a real estate team can be exceptionally rewarding. It does not matter if you are fresh out of the course, a successful solo agent looking to expand, or even an agent looking to winding down their business, yet want to maintain a predictable level of income. 

The owner of the team invests a significant amount of time and money into getting our business to the point where it brings in so many new leads. Why? So you don’t have to! Part of the compensation for making the client(s) available to the Agent on the team is to split the commissions between the agent and the team's owner.

My last bit of advice to you is this; discover what your long-term goals are and align your short-term actions to help you meet the long-term goals.  

Please contact us through the form below if you are interested in fast tracking your career and learning more about joining a tech savvy team here in Victoria!