A huge reason why many real estate agents choose a career in real estate is because the option of working from home. Believe me, it was on the list of reasons when I chose this career too.
Working from home sounds so glorious doesn’t it? You don’t have to dressed, it’s quiet and uninterrupted. Can’t you just smell the freedom and productivity??
The truth is, working from home is great and does offer all of those things I have described. However there are some downfalls. Downfalls that can make or break a successful real estate career.
Let’s focus first on the positives. Being as it is a new year and all.
Working In Your Jammies
This has positive written all over it. Being comfortable boosts your mood, which boosts your energy, which WILL ultimately boost your productivity. Just be sure to shower and change those jammies once in a while. Being stinky will have adverse effects.
Busy office environments and commuting can lead to a ton of distractions that equal lost time. Working from home allows you to save time by not having to drive to the office. It also minimizes, “Hey, can you help me with this?” or even worse the “sometimes negative” conversations that happen near the water cooler. In real estate, this can especially true given the competitive nature and ebbs and flows of the industry. If a non-disruptive work environment is your sole purpose of working from home, be sure you are ensuring it is still happening at home. At home distractions such as laundry, the couch, a nap or family members can be just as, if not worse than office activity.
There are a great number of advantages. Each will be different depending on your situation and ideas of what your goals are.
What are some of the Dis-Advantages of working from home?
Will Power (Or Lack There Of)
I believe this is the most important one. For some this can be an advantage. But let’s face it. For most of us, the LACK of will power is a huge disadvantage. I am not saying that you don’t have it, and that you can’t have it while working from home, however even the most organized people I know have a hard time tying themselves down to a strict schedule of work when the fridge, or swimming pool is RIGHT THERE!! Just because you have the freedom, doesn’t mean you should take advantage of it. Eliminating or staying away from distractions is the absolute key to being successful at working from home. In fact, it’s the key to being successful in general. So if you can and will have the will power then you are well on your way.
Lack of Interaction
Interacting socially is very important for every human being. It improves performance, motivation and overall mental health. Business interaction is also a key ingredient to a successful real estate career. Getting into, or being in the office regularly allows you to have your ear to the ground and opens up conversations of other real estate agents experiences. When working from home you miss out on the buzz of the office and for most, you can become easily isolated. As real estate agents we have very few people in our circles that understand what our business life is like day to day. Surrounding yourself with individuals that “get you” will help your motivation immensely. So even if you do work from home, I recommend at the very least weekly visits into your office.
If you can’t set up a quiet and private space to work at home then you should really consider working from the office. If you find your office space to be a negative environment or a place that’s hard to work in, consider making some changes. Can you find the willpower and space to work from home? Is there some where else that you can work? Maybe even further changes need to be made.
A successful career in real estate comes from hard work and preparation.
Whatever you choose, whether working from home or your brokerage you should be very aware of your working style and your needs as a professional.