The majority of Realtors® self-initiated their career in real estate and identify strong people skills as the most important trait to be a successful agent, according to the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) new research report, Choosing a Career in Real Estate: A Perspective on Gender, Race and Ethnicity.
NAR says it developed the report to find out how and why Realtors chose real estate as a career, and to examine gender, race and ethnicity in real estate.
“A career in real estate offers a work environment and diversity of opportunity that attracts all types of individuals, and the report’s findings are a reflection of that,” says NAR president William E. Brown. “That being said, NAR remains committed to ensuring that its membership continues to reflect America’s growing diversity.”
Choosing a career in real estate
- Nearly 70% of Realtors “self-initiated” their career in real estate based on interest in the industry.
- Almost 20% were referred by a friend.
- 69% of males self-initiated compared to 65% percent of females.
- 20% of women were referred by a friend compared to 18% percent of men.
- 75% of black and African-American members self-initiated their real estate career– more than any other ethnic group.
- 27% percent of Asian and Pacific Islander members had their career in real estate referred by a friend, also more than any other group.
Why go into real estate?
Nearly 7 in 10 Realtors found flexible hours to be the most attractive aspect about being a real estate agent, followed by interest in the industry 64%, working with people 54%, entrepreneurial field 50% and salary possibilities 49%.
The report also surveyed Realtors about important skills to possess to be successful in real residential estate. At the top of the list:
For Residential Realtors:
People skills 86%.
Negotiation skills 73%.
For commercial Realtors:
Negotiation skills 69%.
Problem solving skills 63%.
Analytical reasoning 62%.
The report also surveyed members on whether they began their career in real estate or if they transitioned into real estate from another industry.
The majority of Realtors 82% started their professional career doing something else. Real estate is more often the second career for females 51% and the third career for males 36%.
61% of black and African-American members stated that real estate is more often a second career, more than any other ethnic group. Male members were more likely to have a previous career in management or sales, and, in contrast, female members were more likely to have a previous career in management, office support and education.
Females make up 63% of NAR’s membership. Those who work exclusively in residential have a median gross income from real estate of $46,700 compared to $54,600 for men. Women tend to be younger in age and more likely to work part-time. When it comes to residential business activity, women had a median of 8 sales transactions compared to 7 for men.
Asian and Pacific Islander members working exclusively in residential real estate have the highest median gross annual income of all ethnic groups at $56,800, followed by white and Caucasian members at $54,200, Hispanic and Latino members at $41,700, and black and African American at $23,000.
Those who work in dual specialties, both residential and commercial, tend to have higher gross median incomes at $89,300.
70% of female members work exclusively in residential real estate, compared to 45% of male members.
15% of males work exclusively in commercial real estate, compared to only 4% of females.
Hispanic and Latino members make up the largest share of those working exclusively in residential real estate 71%
Asian and Pacific Islander members make up the largest share working in both commercial and residential real estate 37%
12% of white and Caucasian members work only in commercial real estate, compared to 3% or less for all other ethnic groups
Dual specialists typically have 10 residential transactions and 1 commercial transaction. They tend to have more experience in residential real estate than those working exclusively in residential real estate, and they’re more likely than others to work in small towns, rural areas and resort areas.
Race and ethnicity in real estate
Comparing the activity of each ethnic group in real estate, the report finds that white and Caucasian members make up 82% of all NAR members and had the most transactions and highest sales volume.
Asian and Pacific Islander members had the highest median gross income, sold the most expensive homes and had the highest median dollar value of residential sales transactions. They also had the second highest median years of experience 10 years and were the second largest group of members over 60 years in age @ 29%.
Black and African American members have the lowest median gross income and sell the least expensive homes; however, they make up the largest group working less than 20 hours a week and are also the largest group to receive less than half their overall income from residential real estate. According to NAR, the findings indicate that the income of black and African American members is more diversified outside the industry, and that real estate is only a part-time source of income.
Hispanic and Latino members are the largest group specializing exclusively in residential real estate 71%. They’re the largest group with less than one year of experience 25% and are the youngest members. Hispanics and Latino members have the second most median residential sales transactions and sold the third most expensive homes, according to the report.
Choosing a Career in Real Estate: A Perspective on Gender, Race and Ethnicity report was based on a survey sent from March to April 2017 to 144,000 members of the National Association of Realtors. A representative sample of 6,363 members responded to the survey, an adjusted response rate of 4.4 percent.
© 2017 Florida Realtors