Sure, sure, “how many years someone has been in the business” is a rough proxy for how experienced a particular Realtor is.

That’s especially so in a field where something like 90% of new entrants last less than two years.

But, I’d argue, there are three other metrics that more accurately capture how seasoned/skilled any given agent is:

One. Transactions handled.

Once a Realtor has handled 10 – 15 transaction sides — representing either the Buyer or Seller in a single deal — they’ve at least learned the basics.

A few new agents get to that point in three months; others can require two (or more) years.

Two. Types of markets they’ve worked in.

Believe it or not, there’s actually something called a “Buyer’s Market.”

Supposedly, there’s even a phenomenon known as a “Balanced Market.”

But since the housing market hasn’t experienced either one in at least 6-7 years, I’m guessing that more than 50% of all agents currently active are only familiar with a Seller’s Market.

When — not if — there’s another market shift . . . they’ll see how different it feels. 

Three. Office managers worked under (note: the technical term — which agents never use — is “Managing Broker”).

Given the transient nature of the field, most Realtors work under exactly one Office Manager.

I’ve now worked with four.

Beginning with the inimitable Josh Kaplan, thru the ever-buoyant Molly Goenner, each one has been outstanding in their own right, and taught me something — actually, many things — only they could have.

Variously your coach, cheerleader, conscience, and unpaid shrink, it’s hard to overestimate the Office Manager’s importance to individual agents (even veteran ones who seemingly need less support).

While the Edina Realty brand assures consistency and quality control, it’s the Office Manager — and the agents they attract/retain over time — who puts their “stamp” on each brokerage office . . .

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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