It Not All About the Split: Choosing a Real Estate Brokerage

It’s Not All About the Split: Choosing a Real Estate Brokerage


Too many new, and even seasoned real estate agents, choose their brokerage based primarily on commission splits. However, a little more consideration and some basic calculations indicate that much of the final, in-your-pocket income often has a lot to do with the various services, and less obvious costs, offered and charged by brokerages. Below are a few tips to get you thinking about your next real estate transition.

Determine Your Expenses:

Before you can accurately compare the service offerings and commission split of different brokerages, you should have a clear understanding of your income needs and expectations, based on personal and projected business expenses.  There are many free resources and spreadsheets available online to get you started and to give you an idea of what you need to move your business forward. Having a breakdown of these expenses will help you compare costs and assign value to services, regardless of whether you would pay a brokerage split or a flat fee!

Compare Broker Lead Referrals:

New agents, especially, will want to ask whether they will receive leads or prospects from the brokerage. If so, what are their projections for floor time or walk -ins, phone leads, website or online sources? Do office leads affect the commission split or fee?

You may find that, based on average numbers of referrals, a 50/50 split at one brokerage may be better than a 60/40 split at another. Now, considering most brokerages don’t offer enough referrals for agents to live on, it is often worth asking if a company offers lead gen training or support. This “teach an agent to fish” approach can be an even better value to new agents who don’t have strong lead systems in place.

Don’t Forget Incidentals and Office Expenses:

Many traditional real estate brokerages have charges for office materials, web site maintenance and copies. Remember that these items add up and make certain that you are aware of all charges for resources you are likely to use. At some brokerages you may find there is an all encompassing office charge that covers many services – a number of which you may never utilize! In other instances, you may find yourself receiving a laundry list of charges for every single office item used.

Training, Mentoring and Support are Crucial:

Most new agents need training in contracts, negotiation and procedures. However, more experienced agents may have more need for sales/marketing training or motivational materials. Savvy agents will want to know if a brokerage offers trainings or seeks out trainings that are relevant to your particular level of experience. Perhaps you are a consistently producing agent, but need help with business planning or goal setting to take your career to the next level.

If you are a new agent, you may be seeking a brokerage that offers a mentoring program. Keep in mind that mentoring often comes with a cost. It could be a temporary lower split or a per-transaction charge or percentage.

Finally, even experienced agents need counsel or a sounding board when unusual contract situations arise. Since real estate sales is an “all hours” business, it is important to be sure that the broker or brokers at an office are accessible – even after hours and one weekends.

If you are considering changing brokerages or are interested in finding a good place to launch your real estate career, please contact me today. I would love to talk to you about what Red Robin, REALTORS can offer in this competitive and dynamic market!

For More Information About Red Robin REALTORS,

Contact Managing Broker, Jan Smits – 770-712-5808

posted: Apr 30, 2015 | No Responses

Posted by:  Jan Smits

Jan has over 10 years experience as a REALTOR focused around the intown neighborhoods of East Atlanta, Edgewood, Kirkwood, and East Lake. As Managing Broker for Red Robin Group, she ensures that the office is running smoothly and that agents have the tools they need to be successful. Jan handles the contract-to-close process, ensures agent contract compliance, and delivers countless other exceptional agent services. Since joining Red Robin Group in 2009, she has closed hundreds of transactions, and her services have proven to be an invaluable asset to agents and clients alike.

Share. Let your friends weigh in on this one...