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  • Writer's pictureVivian Chong

Which Real Estate Agency Should I Join? (Updated 2024)

Updated: Apr 8


which real estate property agency to join


Just received the good news that many who took the recent RES exam have passed their papers! Big congrats!


For those who need another attempt, go for the next one while your memory is fresh! Don't give up!


I met with several aspiring real estate agents recently. Speaking to them reminded me of what made me join my first property agency when I started my career.


If you are looking to enter the property industry, I believe one of the first few questions you have is:


Which property agency should I join? Who is the right person to guide me in my real estate agent career?

I always like to share my experience, whether with someone new to the industry or veterans with loads of experience under their belt.


Sharing is a way of self-reflection. I learn from sharing my experience as much as listening to others sharing theirs.


I have decided to put my thoughts into writing. I hope it benefits you, and I am sure at the end of my writing, I will find new inspiration and ideas for my real estate career too!


vivian chong property career mentor


Evolution of Property Agencies Over The Years


According to the Council of Estate Agencies (CEA), there are 1,090 property agencies and 35,251 property agents in Singapore as of 1 January 2o24.


Below are the Top 10 largest property agencies according to the number of agents they have:


Huttons


Huttons is the third largest agency in Singapore.

Through my years in the real estate industry, I have seen how property agencies have evolved. The market was not as regulated when I first joined, and there was a low barrier to entry to becoming an agent.


The Estate Agent Act was passed in 2010, and CEA was established to regulate and develop the real estate agency industry in Singapore. Its mission is to raise the professionalism of the real estate agency industry and protect consumers' interests.



vivian chong property real estate agent huttons era propnex


Stricter measures were put in place. Salespersons are required to pass the Real Estate Salesperson (RES) examination before they can conduct real estate work. Estate Agencies are also required to adhere to stricter criteria before they can apply for or renew their licenses.


This saw many smaller agencies shutting their agency and heading to the bigger agencies. Looking at the Top 10 largest agencies chart above, as of the beginning of this year, more than 80% of the agents come from the top 5 largest agencies.


This brings me to the point. Is it true that joining one of the larger property agencies is better for someone new to the real estate industry?

important-considerations
Should a new RES join a bigger real estate agency? Or are there more important considerations?

Which Property Agency Should I Join?


A few criteria are essential for a new real estate agent when deciding which property agency to join. I have summarised the following few points:


(1) Brand


When I decided to join the real estate industry, I only wanted to join the larger and more established companies.


So, sometime in 2002, I walked into a Success Seminar held by my previous company, ERA. Not too long after, I became a Real Estate Agent.


property agents, real estate agents, realtor, award winning mentor
Receiving an award during my earlier days in the real estate industry.

Does brand name help? I would say yes.


How much of my career today is attributed to my company's brand?


While it helps somewhat, much more is down to myself and the people around me.


And what defines a brand?


As real estate agents running our own businesses, does a brand constitute only the company you belong to? Or are we our brand?


Through my years in real estate, I have realized that establishing myself as my brand is more important.


Coca-cola-brand
Can you think about the Coca-Cola brand without seeing red and white in your brain?

(2) Training


I cannot emphasize enough the importance of training. Not only does it give us the knowledge to conduct our business, but it also gives us the confidence that we can do a good job.


In the modern days of real estate, the following training is crucial for a real estate agent to survive and stand out.


Basic Real Estate Training


Once a new RES passes their exam, they should be given comprehensive basic real estate training.


The training syllabus should include practical day-to-day real estate skills. Some of these topics include prospecting for leads, HDB and private property financial calculation and timeline, securing exclusives to sell, marketing and negotiation.


In NAVIS, we run regular boot camps for RES who have just passed their exams or need a refresher course.


Check out this video of what our RES said about our boot camp!



Advanced Real Estate Training


Once agents learn the basic skills needed to conduct their real estate business, they should attend more advanced training to enhance their skills.


With the increasing trend of DIY transactions, real estate agents must move beyond their transactional duties and into advisory roles. Comprehensive, advanced real estate training allows us to upgrade to an advisory role.


An excellent example of advanced real estate training would be NAVIS trademark Property Wealth Planning training.


Property Wealth Planning (PWP) imparts agents with systematic real estate knowledge on how to build wealth through property investment. We can then value-add our clients by advising them how to use property for wealth building.




Another training course offered by NAVIS is the Advisory Sales Masterclass (ASM).


Agents learn advanced real estate methods such as creative mortgage and financial strategies, property holding and structuring techniques, and exit plans for property investments.


When choosing an agency, find out if they offer similar training.



Digital And Social Media Marketing


Equally important is the training on digital and social media marketing - for the properties that we are selling, as well as for personal marketing.


How can we use digital marketing to enhance personal branding and consistently bring in leads at the lowest possible cost?


How do we use social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, WeChat etc, to reach our target audience?


Property agencies must provide extensive training in this area in an era where almost everyone is on social media.


Two teammates in NAVIS, William Lee and William Tan, are incredibly well-versed in Facebook marketing. They run three full-day FB training classes for our NAVIS teammates.


This is a highly recommended course for all realtors who want to use FB as one of their prospecting methods to generate leads.


facebook-marketing
Thank you to William Lee and William Tan for equipping us with the skillset on Facebook marketing!

(3) Technology


Technology has dramatically changed how we conduct our real estate business.


When I first joined the industry, most of my marketing was done via newspapers and flyers. Nowadays, most of my ads are done on online property portals like PropertyGuru, 99.c0, SRX and EdgeProp.



traditional marketing in real estate career
A lot of my marketing was done using flyers in the earlier days of my career.

Document submission used to be a chore. Stacks of papers needed to be submitted manually to the office. With technology, all this can now be done in the comfort of our homes.


And how can I not mention the super apps that NAVIS has developed? Check out the reviews for the Huttons Analyzer App in the video below!




Most agencies offer technology support, such as an interactive website and app that agents can use to perform basic functions. However, technology has advanced so much that it can help us in many more areas!


Therefore, choosing an agency that offers powerful technology support is essential. This support can significantly reduce our workload, allowing us to work more efficiently.



(4) New Project Launches Opportunities


Sometimes, I hear real estate agents declare:

I am a resale agent.

I understand their perspective. I was one of them not too long ago!


When we entered the real estate market in the early 2000s, project launches were not as popular. We were trained from the early stage of our careers to do resale transactions for both HDB and private properties.


Humans are creatures of habit. It is easier to stick to what we are used to doing than to venture into a new area altogether.


When I crossed over to Huttons, I started learning about project marketing.


I am proud to be the Top Project agent for January 2023!


vivian chong top project real estate agent
It was a massive achievement for me to attain the Huttons Top Project award in January 2023.

Project launches are popular with property buyers, and it is a profitable segment not to be missed.


Huttons is a pioneer in project marketing. We are one of the top marketing agencies in Singapore, based on the number of projects we market.


Choosing an agency with a good pipeline of project launches is essential. Being a developer-appointed agency means we can access the most up-to-date information and pricing from the developer!



(5) People


I have chosen this as my last point, as this is the most important criterion when deciding which property agency to join.


Team


I am blessed with good people around me throughout my real estate career journey.


In my previous agency, my mentor emphasized the importance of being ethical while carrying out our work. He also inculcated a culture of sharing within the team.


In an environment where much emphasis is placed on the sales an agent can bring in, being around people with the same values is of the utmost importance. It keeps us grounded and makes our working life more enjoyable.

This is especially important for agents who have just started their real estate career.


I was again blessed with wonderful teammates when I moved to the NAVIS group. The three things that I like most about NAVIS are:


1) Leaders are generous in sharing their knowledge and experience.

2) Teammates are helpful and caring.

3) Positive energy and vibes within the team


A team is made up of people. Everyone on the team needs to uphold the values to create and pass down a culture.


important for everyone
It is vital for everyone in the team to uphold the team values so a culture can be created and passed down.

Mentor


I cannot stress enough the importance of having a good mentor. A good mentor can help you greatly in your real estate business.


I like the definition of a mentor by Demetri Argyropoulos, CEO of Avant Global.


A great mentor is someone whose qualities make up a much better version of who you envision becoming.

A good real estate mentor guides you in your property career. Many real estate mentors are good at training agents and helping them when they encounter difficulties in their careers. This is important, especially for new agents.


However, a great mentor goes further to help agents reach their short-term targets (e.g., yearly sales targets) and inspire them in their long-term real estate careers. 


A common mistake new agents make when looking for a mentor is to simply look at the potential mentor's sales.

A top salesperson may not be the best mentor, nor might they be the one with years of experience. 


real estate mentor should be knowledgeable, resourceful, and genuinely interested in your professional growth. They should be empathetic, caring, and generous in sharing their knowledge and experience. 


Most importantly, a mentor should inspire and challenge you to be better.

It is thus essential to find out more about the potential mentor you will be joining before committing.


property agent career women leader mentor
A mentor should inspire and challenge you to be better.

Conclusion


I hope what I have shared is useful. If you think my article benefits any of your friends, please share it with them.


As a new real estate agent, it is important to choose the right agency and join a team with like-minded individuals. A team encourages learning and improvement, and provides support and camaraderie.

In short, TEAM means Together Everyone Achieves More.

If you would like to find out more about how we can help you kickstart your real estate career, drop me a WhatsApp or schedule an appointment with me using the link below.


See you soon!



 

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About The Author

real estate agent career property female leader mentor

Vivian joined the real estate industry in 2002. Having been in the real estate business for more than 2 decades, she knows the rewards and challenges that a real estate agent faces.

While the real estate career offers lucrative income and flexible work hours, it also presents many challenges - financial insecurity as we do not have basic pay, time management as we juggle work, children and family all at once.


Only those who have walked the same journey will understand.


Vivian would now like to pay it forward by mentoring fellow agents, especially women who want to build a real estate career.


It is her vision to see women achieving their dreams and live their lives with passion through a successful real estate career.

Connect with Vivian at 98577714 to embark on this journey.

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