Being a Real Estate Agent isn’t just an occupation—it means you are in business for yourself. That’s both freeing and a responsibility.
It also means you need to be as focused on the bottom line as you are on your top-line sales, and that success takes more than prospecting for new leads. You also have to manage your cost of doing business. Here are some suggestions for exerting more control over your business expenses.
Watch the Nickels and Dimes
The key is not to spend more than you have to. That means monitoring your expense accounts and bill payment dates to make sure everything gets paid on time. Also, shop around for low-fee business credit cards and bank accounts.
Using discounts and coupons furthers the cause along with signing up for rewards and loyalty programs at the restaurants, gas stations, and office supply stores you frequent for business purposes. The money you get back, especially when it comes in the form of gift cards, can be useful in offsetting house-warming gifts and other business-related purchases.
Time is money, and when it comes to your time, load up on tools that will help you make the most of yours. Scheduling assistants and neighborhood apps that make you an expert in the areas you are showing can be invaluable. There are also many apps that will automatically track the amount you drive for business and enable you to keep a log so that you can take the mileage deduction at tax time. This could potentially add up to thousands of dollars.
Hold Your Marketing Expenses Accountable
Be sure to measure the effectiveness of your expenses. They should lead to a return. For instance, monitor your lead generation system to ensure it is paying for itself. From low-tech signs to direct mail, make sure the techniques you use offer you a return on investment before reinvesting in that approach.
Be a Better Driver
Being a Real Estate Agent is a car-based business. While it helps to drive a fuel-efficient car, there are many other factors you will want to consider to improve that efficiency and reduce your trips to the gas station.
- Check your tires at least monthly. Maintaining them at the optimal PSI rating suggested by your manufacturer directly impacts your mileage.
- Avoid quick accelerations, speeding, and sudden stops. Gradual braking and a steady speed use substantially less gas.
- Turn off the engine. An idling engine is one that is consuming gas—and your money—for no reason.
- Refrain from using your trunk as an office supply closet. The lighter the load, the less gas you consume, so you may want to remove the “open house” signs after each use.
- Use mapping tools with the same vigor that car services do. Companies like Uber provide their drivers with routing information that helps them avoid traffic jams.
- Avoid multiple trips to outlying areas. Some Real Estate Agents to encourage clients to take virtual tours to limit showings to just those with the highest interest level. Still others require buyers to have a preapproval letter in hand before getting in the car.
When you are in business for yourself, every action you take impacts your bottom line. Closing transactions is your ultimate goal, but keeping your eye on how much you spend to close them can improve your ultimate results.