Being a real estate agent, you are looking for more opportunities continually. An opportunity you might want to consider is working for a new broker. The National Association of Realtors says that a Realtor spends an average of three years with each broker. If you are thinking about leaving your real estate broker, you may be wondering how to go about doing it.
Make an Assessment: Are You Really Ready to Leave?
Many realtors are quick to leave their current broker. But that doesn’t mean it’s always the best decision.
You have probably established significant relationships at your current brokerage as well as furthering your career.
Before you leave, consider what you would gain by staying. Do you want to talk to your broker about your worries? Although it is unlikely, it is still possible that you will be able to get the things you want from the broker you have.
Nothing is perfect. If you switch brokers, you might not be able to get everything you need. You might find yourself in the same situation elsewhere if you leave one situation.
That said, you should not stay in a place that is not good for you. If you want something that your broker can’t provide, then it’s time to move on.
As a Realtor, you aren’t an employee. You do not have the same legal protections as an employee and you also do not have the same responsibilities. You are allowed to leave at any time. But that doesn’t mean there may not be consequences.
Is It Really Time To Leave?
There are various reasons why a real estate agent would choose to switch brokerages. It could be for financial reasons, because they have outgrown their current broker, or because they made a mistake in their original choice of broker.
You should take a good look at your current brokerage and see what problems there are and what is causing your dissatisfaction before you leave. Sometimes, problems can be resolved. Many real estate brokers will be willing to negotiate a higher commission split with you if you are a productive and high-producing agent.
Most real estate brokers want to keep good agents rather than recruit new ones.
When It’s Time To Move On
If you’re no longer content with your real estate broker, it’s time to look for a new one. This sometimes happens when real estate agents join teams and then later decide they want to work solo. Or, when an experienced real estate agent becomes more established in their career.
Many people do not require the aid that a broker can provide. An agent’s business will grow over time as they build their own database, sphere of influence, and real estate team.
Some people feel that they are paying too much in brokerage fees. They may want to switch to a broker with a lower fee or a more favorable commission split. There are also agents who start working at the wrong brokerage and they do not receive the promised support.
Don’t Burn Any Bridges With Your Current Team
If you are unhappy with your broker, you may be tempted to leave them. You could walk out the door without giving them any reasons, but it’s usually a bad idea.
There will most likely be a time when you need help from your former broker or an agent that still works at your previous brokerage. You might work with them as a buyer’s agent. Your new brokerage could end up merged with them. You could eventually even choose to go back.
You should leave your real estate brokerage when things are going well. Tell them how grateful you are for the opportunities and education they have provided for you. It’s not personal if an average real estate agent changes brokers frequently – as long as you don’t make it personal.
Save It For an In-Person Meeting
You can’t just drop a letter in the real estate industry and expect things to happen. In general, it is best to discuss your departure from the real estate industry in person. This is because the industry is highly personal.
The most respectful way to tell your real estate broker that you are leaving is to have a face-to-face meeting. You won’t have to worry about this if your brokerage’s activities are all held online and through video chat.
Make sure to be clear with your broker about the fact that you are leaving and when you plan on doing so. You can describe the new and exciting opportunities ahead of you if someone asks you about them. You don’t need to explain or justify your decision to anyone. You don’t need to negotiate with anyone either.
If you stay with your current broker, you may be offered more than you would from a new broker. Think carefully before taking that offer.
Most brokers will try to keep you as a client by offering more enticing deals. But at least some of your staff will be planning on quitting and replacing you with someone more affordable and more willing to stay.
Collect Your Client Data
This means that if you change brokerages, your old Realtor will likely still have your contact information and any other data they collected about you during your time working together. Most Realtors own their client data, so if you change brokerages, your old Realtor will likely still have your contact information and any other data they collected about you during your time working together. You should not agree to any terms that would not allow you to have full control over this information. Before leaving, be sure to collect information from your past, present, and future clients. If you want to use the data in your CRM software in another application, you will need to export it.
A Realtor isn’t just a salesperson. A new brokerage firm will typically expect that the real estate agent will bring their existing business with them when they switch firms. If you have a potential buyer or seller that you’re working with, it’s important to let them know as soon as possible that you’re leaving.
Make sure to let your current clients know that you are leaving your broker so they will be able to get in touch with you.
This means that if you had an outstanding order with your previous broker, your next broker will still be responsible for it. It’s not ideal to have to tell your clients you’re using a different broker during a real estate transaction.
Take a Look at Your Contract
It is important to check the independent contractor agreement that was signed when first joining the brokerage, before taking any steps to leave. The amount you get from all closing costs is likely to be included in the topics discussed. The agreement may stipulate that you must stay for a certain length of time.
Additionally, if your managing broker financed your continuing education, you might be obligated to reimburse them.
The contract you have outlines what you will be allowed to take with you when you leave and what you might have to give back to them.
Prepare Your Clients For Your Move
After informing your broker that you plan to leave, it’s time to begin preparing your clients for the transition. Tell your clients that you’re planning on moving to a new company.
If you are thinking about hiring a new broker, it is important to keep in mind that they may already own any listings you have for your property. It is best to check with your current broker to see if this is the case before making any decisions. Even if you are the listing agent, it is usually stated in the contract that the listing will be under the broker.
Some brokers will allow a real estate professional to take their current listings with them. You can pay a referral fee in order to keep working on the deals that you have already arranged. But that can be expensive.
Give Appropriate Notice, and Time it Right
If you’re planning on leaving your real estate broker, it’s best to give them advanced notice so they can plan accordingly. You are not required to give notice as an independent contractor. If you don’t want to burn any bridges, it’s a good idea to not do anything that would damage those relationships. Your contract or onboarding documents should outline the cost.
Although it is not necessary to tell your broker immediately after deciding to leave, it is important to do so eventually. Instead, you should time it right. The ideal time to ask for referrals is usually after you have completed the majority of your closings.
When you have already dealt with most of your outstanding matters, it is easier to leave. You can avoid spending money on costly referral fees by doing things this way. Some brokers will not require any payment from you when you leave. However, it can be jarring to do so while in the middle of other transactions.
Avoid Telling People You Will Leave Before Your Official Notice
It is better if your broker hears about you leaving from you directly instead of from office gossip. If you tell your colleagues and clients in advance, your broker may feel like you’ve left them out of the loop and they may be upset. Additionally, they may avoid sending you clients because they are aware that you are planning to leave, even if you do not have an immediate plan to do so.
You may change your mind about quitting until you actually hand in your notice. You should not give your official notice until you have another broker’s offer in hand. If an offer is rescinded, it is best to not be in a place where people are aware of your impending departure.
Don’t Feel Bad About Taking a New Opportunity
As a Realtor, you’re an independent contractor. This means that you are not restricted by your agreement with your broker and are therefore free to act as you please.
You may feel you owe your current brokerage a lot, however you don’t owe them the rest of your career.
The world of real estate is a pragmatic one. You will always reach a point where you need to move on to new, exciting opportunities. Real estate agents are always on the move.
Knowing When to Move On
It’s actually pretty easy to tell. When it’s time to move on from your current broker, it will be pretty easy to tell.
To be successful, a real estate agent must always be aware of new properties on the market and be willing to negotiate for a better deal.
You may think you can earn more money elsewhere. The company’s culture might have changed and you don’t identify with it anymore. Or you might have just received a better offer.
You will know when it is time to move on in a situation, just like you would know when to sell a house – when you receive the offer that is best for your client. The offer that is best for you will be chosen.
Final Thoughts on How to Tell Your Real Estate Broker You Are Leaving
If you want to leave your real estate broker, it doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s not uncommon for agents to leave their brokerages, and many of them move around before finding the right one for them.