Q: “Denise, there are a few new brokerages in town that are knocking at my door. I am not unhappy with my brokerage, but think I am paying too much for what I am getting. What should my next move be?”
I am a proponent of making sure you are indeed getting everything out of your brokerage that you are already paying for first. Depending on your brokerage model, you may be allotted a certain number of copies, help from the administrative assistant by way of stuffing envelopes or tech help, or even one-on-one meetings with your managing broker. However, many agents do not take advantage of all the help that is right there in front of them.
The next step is to make a list of everything you do get with your current brokerage and the corresponding fees. That way you can make sure you have an understanding of what you get and how much that costs you per year.
If you have done these two things and have still determined that:
- Your current office does not have the right atmosphere for you to be as productive as you need (for example, it is a trek to get there, it isn’t easy to print or have one-on-one meetings with your clients, etc)
- Your managing broker isn’t the right fit for your needs
- Your brokerage offerings are not the right fit for your needs
- The fee structure is not the right fit for your needs
Then you can start a conversation with the new brokerage. However, don’t buy into hype – get real data and get facts (such as fees and the list of what you get) in writing. Don’t get pressured into making a decision right away. Talk to other agents who have made a move to make sure the new brokerage is not “all hat, no cattle”.
Your first step isn’t to make a move. It is to gather information. Don’t stop at the other brokerage knocking on your door. Throw your net out a little further and don’t be afraid to talk to other brokerages that you have heard rave reviews about. Remember, you don’t usually marry the first person you date. Take your time, gather information and do your homework.