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The Rise of Real Estate Teams

When I first got my real estate license back in April 2005, selling real estate was a far cry from where we are today. We didn’t have Facebook or other social media. We didn’t have the availability of online e-signature platforms to sign contracts. We didn’t even have robust websites for consumers to view homes online. To be honest, most real estate agents were still advertising their homes for sale in the newspaper and were glad to be able to fax contracts back and forth to each other. Another major difference was the presence of real estate teams.

In 2004, Keller Williams Realty founder, Gary Keller wrote his first book, The Millionaire Real Estate Agent. The book immediately made the best-seller list on BusinessWeek and several other business-related lists. When I joined Keller Williams the very next year, the broker handed me a copy of the book and I read it immediately.

This book made so much sense to me. The book describes how to build a real estate team of experts. It asks the question, “How can one single agent handle all the activity of a real estate transaction and be knowledgeable in advising their clients?” As a real estate agent, we wear many different hats. We are in sales, marketing, operations, negotiations, client services, and must be knowledgeable about problem-solving. On top of that, we have to be experts in managing people’s emotions – add family counselor to that list. There is simply no way that one single agent can handle multiple clients at a very high level and still give each of them great customer service.

Fast forward 15 years and my real estate team now includes five experienced agents, plus two client care managers, and a chief operations officer. We consistently sell over 100 homes per year, just over $30 million in sales, and cover the entire Kansas City area on both the Missouri and Kansas sides. The best part though is we have the systems and people in place to consistently help our clients through the process and give them great service, working as a team. I never get tired of hearing our clients talk about how easy it was to sell or buy their home. It’s because we have a team of experts helping them.

Clearly, I’m not the only one that’s figured this out. For example, the top 15 teams in my Keller Williams office will have sold just over $350 million in residential real estate this year! That’s a crazy number considering the average real estate agent in Kansas City sells about 8-10 homes per year totaling around $2 million. Those are the agents that struggle with all the technology that’s come into our business in the last five years. They also don’t have anyone to fill in for them while they are sick or on vacation. They have to do everything themselves and it’s all they can do to handle about one or two clients a month. You’d think they would be able to give their clients great customer service but they don’t. Juggling multiple clients at once is too difficult. That’s why many of them end up leaving the business.

I’ve seen some statistics that say real estate teams will completely dominate the field within the next five years. Personally, I think we’re already there.

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