Final Broker Choice

Scott Costello All, Blog 16 Comments

Which Broker3I’ve met with all the potential brokers and I think I’ve made my decision on which one to hang my license with.  I was looking for a broker that would allow me to be free to do as I wish (to a point).   The most important factors in making my decision were…

  1. Not have to work as a salesperson for the broker unless I volunteered to
  2. No desk time
  3. No monthly fees
  4. No class requirements, but they offered training if I needed it
  5. Referral compensation
  6. Investor Friendly
  7. Investors on board
  8. close proximity to where I live (within 20 minute drive)

I was able to find this with two brokerages and took the weekend to think about which one worked best for me.

Break down of the candidates

Candidate #1: Exit Realtyexit

They have a high tech environment that understands what an investor does.  The broker-of-record was a nice guy and was willing to work with me and help me out.  I had the feeling that if I didn’t attend the training sessions or the “required” monthly meetings it was going to be a problem.  Quite a few of their Sales Agents also invested some, but none were full time investors.

Candidate #2:  Realty ExecutivesRealty Executives_Logos

I contacted these guys from a Craigslist ad.  It looked to be a very well run company and had everything an agent would need to be successful.  There was one other investor who was just starting to do deals with them in the same fashion as I wanted, which was good.   The broker understood what I wanted to do and was very willing to have me aboard and help out any way possible.  He even offered to sign me up as a referral only agent and let me use his MLS access when ever I needed it.  Very tempting and by far the cheapest way I could go.

Candidate #3: Millenium RealtyMillenium

This is the smallest brokerage that I interviewed.  In fact it was a one man shop that just got started in June.   His man source of leads are from a group of investors that have hooked up with him.  He will sign up clients who have responded to these investors, but didn’t meet the their criteria.   My investor friend, Jarred, works for the investors (Homevestors actuall).  I had a great conversation with the broker and I love the fact that he works directly with a group of investors.

My Decision…

Well, I’ve eliminated Exit Realty from the equation as I think we just didn’t totally agree upon what I would be doing.  So that leaves me with a choice between Realty Executives and Millenium and I can’t really decide.  They both meet all my criteria but each has their advantages, so let me break those down and maybe you guys can help me decide.

Realty Executives

Advantages:

  • Use of their staff for selling properties, creating flyers, postcards and other forms of advertising.
  • 70/30 split
  • 20% referal (of 70%)
  • Works with 1 investor that is doing what I want to do

Millenium

Advantages

  • Works with Jarred and Homevestors exclusively
  • Small shop that deals with the types of leads that I’m looking for
  • Motivated Broker willing to help me out, so I help him get more leads
  • 50/50 split
  • 25% referral commission

I’m leaning towards Millenium becuase of the direct connection with the investor group that I could be able to leverage.  What do you all think,  right choice?

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Comments 16

  1. Scotty, If you think you be can be successiful in real estate without training you are wrong. You don't know what you don't know.
    I am sure the Broker who offered to give you access to the MLS without you being a member is in violation of the rules of the mls. If having a broker that is willing to violate the rules for you, what kind of integrity does he realy have?
    A one man shop is not going have any training, you are a serious risk to whom ever you represent, both in the firm and the clients.
    If you don't go with a company that is helping you learn and understand the industry, you will riot away within a year

  2. Jim,

    I completely understand what you are saying. If I was joining the brokerage to become a sales agent to take listings and sell the homes for my clients I would have chosen differently. My intent is to gain MLS access, be able to make offers on houses that I want to purchase, to be able to enter into listed homes and also to refer leads that don't work for me to my brokerage.

    The training I for see myself needing is the basics of filling out an offer, routing through the MLS and how to use the Electronic Key. Don't get me wrong though, I intend to obey the sales agent guidelines as integrity is a big deal to me.

  3. Scott,
    Good post, I have these same issues coming up. I'll be watching follow ups to this. I think I would have chosen #2 for different reasons. 3 might be the best choice for you with your situation. Can't wait to see 🙂

  4. Scott,

    I just made the decision to switch brokers. I've been with Keller Williams for the past 6 years and they were very investor friendly and very pro-education and training. But now, I'm REALLY wanting to gear up on investing so I'm cutting back on excessive fees (they were only like $60 a month) but I've decided to join a small local brokerage. He charges $25 a month, gives an 80/20 split, works mostly with reo's, knows plenty of investors and knows private lenders and he does about 20 bpo's a week and he told me that he'd be more than happy to give them to me so I could market to them to buy. Plus, he pays for the e&o insurance and doesn't have any b.s. fees.

    I think I'm making the right decision. I figure if I wanted to be a straight up agent that I'd stay with KW, but since I know what direction I want to go in than I must have ran into this guy for a reason! (He was driving behind me on the road and called me and said “if you make a right at the next street I'll take you into an reo that's not on the market yet but will be.” He saw my We Buy Houses lettering on the back of my car.)

    I think we'll be a good match…….he knows my deal and I know his. So do what you need to do babe and if it's not what you expected, you can always switch offices. Ya know?

    Good luck!

  5. Scott,

    I just made the decision to switch brokers. I've been with Keller Williams for the past 6 years and they were very investor friendly and very pro-education and training. But now, I'm REALLY wanting to gear up on investing so I'm cutting back on excessive fees (they were only like $60 a month) but I've decided to join a small local brokerage. He charges $25 a month, gives an 80/20 split, works mostly with reo's, knows plenty of investors and knows private lenders and he does about 20 bpo's a week and he told me that he'd be more than happy to give them to me so I could market to them to buy. Plus, he pays for the e&o insurance and doesn't have any b.s. fees.

    I think I'm making the right decision. I figure if I wanted to be a straight up agent that I'd stay with KW, but since I know what direction I want to go in than I must have ran into this guy for a reason! (He was driving behind me on the road and called me and said “if you make a right at the next street I'll take you into an reo that's not on the market yet but will be.” He saw my We Buy Houses lettering on the back of my car.)

    I think we'll be a good match…….he knows my deal and I know his. So do what you need to do babe and if it's not what you expected, you can always switch offices. Ya know?

    Good luck!

  6. That's what I was figuring Carey. The fees for them each were pretty much a wash if I were to become an active agent.

  7. Personally I'd go with Carey's broker. 😉

    My best advice is to stop agonizing over the decision and give yourself 60 seconds to go ahead and make one. This is a big lesson I'm learning right now in life…if you're feeling indecisive, it's better to go ahead and move forward quickly most of the time than to spend time standing in one place too long pondering/agonizing over it. By nature I'm a ponderer/agonizer in situations like you're describing.

    I'd go with the smaller guy…I like the flexibility of the smaller guys…but just make a decision and move forward. If you don't like it, you can quickly switch. Just don't spend a bunch on business cards too quickly. 😉

    …jp

  8. JP,

    Oh I definitely have the pondering/agonizing problem. I'm doing my best to over come that, as yesterday afternoon I called the small broker (#3) and told him my intent to sign up with them. Now I've got to just call the other two and tell them thanks for their time but I didn't choose them.

  9. It sounds to me that you are investing in rentals. Because the regulations
    requiring keep earnest money in escrow as opposed to using as working
    capital and other regulations that set you as a real estate agent to a
    higher standard, you would be better off not being a real estate agent. Get
    an agent that is knowledgeable and let him collect the three thousand
    commission. In the long run you are spending a dollar to save a dime. I have
    set up a program that gives the investors that I represent all pertinent
    information, cost, expenses, mortgage options and the monthly cash flow. So
    all that an investor has to do is decide if it is worth doing. You surely
    can't be flipping in this market. How much cash do you have on hand? With
    banks wanting twenty per cent down and banks only loaning a max of four
    properties, you are going to be tied up pretty fast aren't you?

  10. Jim,

    At this point I am not looking to invest in rentals. I'll be wholesaling properties, which means I won't have to tie up my money for to long if at all. I could use transactional funding or just plainly assign the property to another investor. There will be no need for a mortgage on my part. And to rebut your statement “You surely can't be flipping in this market”….

    You sure can! You can flip in any market, it's all how you buy. Just go to the flippinghomes.com forum and ask if anyone is flipping properties there and you'll see.

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