During the summer of 2021, I did what just about every millennial did – rethink my career choices mid-pandemic. 

As I watched the housing market boom, I thought, If that guy can make it in real estate, so can I.” 

One year later, I successfully survived in the business. Not only have I survived, but no one found out about my *zero* years of experience. Here are my top tips for transitioning into real estate as an undercover rookie agent.

Don’t be desperate

Don’t quit your day job. Seriously. No one wants to work with an agent who needs a sale to pay rent. I kept my jobs as a nanny and aide for students with autism until my first five checks from escrow cleared. I called clients back on my breaks, changed outfits in my car before showings, said goodbye to my weekends, and did whatever it took to keep all my work plates spinning.

Not wanting sales too badly became my superpower. 

When a buyer lost his job, an escrow was canceled during the inspection period, or sellers went with another offer, I could stay cool and focus on my next move. Since I wasn’t worried about my next check, I acted like I had plenty of deals in the pipeline long before that was the case, and my clients trusted me to act in their best interest over my bottom line.

Practice talking to “bad” leads

If I had a dollar for every buyer wanting an oceanfront condo on Maui for a cool $300K, I could treat us both to top-notch sushi. 

As frustrating as it was, I stayed consistent with responding to lead alerts and answering buyers’ questions like they were my hottest prospects. Over time, my confidence grew. When speaking with vetted buyers, I could guide the conversation toward a successful transaction. 

Take advantage of whatever lead gen your brokerage offers, ask other agents for their dead leads, and talk to anyone with a pulse about the market until you sound and feel like an expert.

Be a sponge

I consumed a nearly unhealthy amount of content in my first year as an agent. My daily intake included YouTube videos, podcasts, free downloads, and whatever the Instagram algorithm gave me. I couldn’t possibly implement everything I learned (Tom Ferry if you’re reading this I promise I’ll get to geo-farming in Q3). However, I was able to give myself a free crash course in all things real estate.

Let’s face it – passing an exam and knowing the number of square feet in an acre does nothing to help us sell homes. Getting inspired by others’ success, seeing lead pillars in action, and listening to more experienced agents talk about the business motivated me to push through my learning curve and deliver great service to my clients.

Never use your inexperience as an excuse

This last one may seem obvious, but hear me out. When I made a mistake on a contract or didn’t get the result my client was hoping for, I was tempted to say, Sorry, it’s my first year in the business. Don’t do it! Take accountability and make it right for your client, but resist the urge to use your lack of experience as an excuse for not getting the job done.

Being a new agent can be your competitive edge. You’re hungry for whatever outcome you hoped becoming a realtor would give you, and you’re willing to hustle to make it happen. 

Whatever you do, never reveal just how recently the state granted your license to sell. When something unexpected comes up, don’t be afraid to ask your broker or let your client know you’ll get back to them with an answer. You can absolutely beat the odds and stay in the game as a rookie agent – just work hard, play it cool, and walk around with the confidence of your favorite top producer.