What does it take to be a successful agent/agency in the Dubai real estate market?
As of 2016, there were a total of 5,933 real estate agent in Dubai active in the market with a total of 2,285 registered offices as per DLD report. Currently on Property Finder, there are a total of 2,672 active agents and 969 active companies in the market as of September 2020. Sure, that doesn’t mean all the agents or companies in the market are on Property Finder, so let’s consider another 20% agents and companies to be operating within the real estate market. As per our best guess, there would be about 3,200 active agents and about 1,160 active companies in the market. That means for every 2.75 agents, there is one real estate company. Odd metrics, right? Well, one of the reasons for this is that anyone and everyone who thinks real estate is an easy business feels obliged to open up their own company and while some may succeed, the majority of them do end up failing.
I’d go as far as saying that perhaps from this list of active agents or companies, only about 25% are well educated about the laws and regulations of the real estate industry and performing to their true potential. Let’s not talk about the 75 percentile, let’s talk about the 25% who turn out to be successful. What does it take for them to taste success?
The job of a real estate agent in Dubai is not easy, period. I’m not saying any other job is a walk in the park, but for a real estate agent, like any other sales role, it’s all about the income they are able to generate which dictates their take-home per month. The barrier to entry for this role is very low, which results in many aspiring individuals mis-placing their perception of this role as a money-generating machine which requires limited input and knowledge. Majority of the entrants into the field don’t have basic knowledge in mathematics, contracts or legalities. While the most important aspect of this field is to understand how to deal with clients which one can only learn on the job or through the training provided by their company, clients appreciate agents who have their basic educational principles in place:
● Understand the basic calculations of investment, rental yield, service charges, mortgage payments, gross and net income; so you can guide your clients better.
● Understand how to draft and review contracts that your clients are signing as a lot of bad investments can be credited to weak contracts.
● Understand the legality of transactions, how to best protect your client interests and what fail-safe procedures to implement in case something goes wrong.
These are some of the basic principles which are so vital in this field, but are so easily ignored by that 75 percentile of agents. Our basic training starts off with these elements and once the agent has gained strength in these principles, they are better prepared to be out in the field dealing with clients. Other important elements which I believe make up a successful agent include:
● Understanding which clients to focus on and how to negotiate with them
● Understanding how to determine ideal investment or end-user property
● Understanding the difference in dealing with developers and secondary sellers
● Understanding how to structure deals for your clients
● Understanding how to best carry out viewings and property showings
● Understanding how to best approach clients to obtain exclusive listings
Module 1: Mathematics
I’m going to give you simple advice, and I hope this sticks with you. If you like to keep a mile distance between you and mathematics, then stay miles away from a career in real estate. I’m not saying you need to be Einstein to excel in this field, but if you don’t have your basic math fundamentals in place, then either spend time and effort to learn, or please choose a different field. On a daily basis we have to crunch numbers to determine how is the rental yield on a property to pitch to the client, what would be their mortgage payments on the purchase, what is the ideal price per square footage they can sell their property at, how to determine the fundamentals of construction space on a plot of land. Be it the smallest leasing deal, wherein one needs to show proficiency in advising the client their closing costs; or the largest sale deal, wherein one needs to do financial feasibility for a developer on their target plot to acquire; being able to comfortably carry out your calculations goes a long-way in concluding deals successfully. How to improve on your skills to move up the ladder and carry out bigger deals, well that’s where our training comes into play.
Module 2: Contracts
“But it’s the lawyers job to draft and review contracts” – Those used to the Western real estate market. Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but things work differently out there. While the client may lay the burden of reviewing and drafting contracts on their lawyers, 9 out of 10 times it is us as an agency preparing and reviewing contracts for our clients. If you do not know how to work your way around contracts, or think that it’s way below your pay-grade, then bless you! Clients trust you with taking perhaps one of their most important life decisions; we all know what the most important is (quirky slide), don’t you think it is your moral responsibility to ensure they are fully protected to your best capability? Being able to spot wherein there are difficult clauses which go against your client is vital, and you will only be able to improve your skills therein benefiting the client through repetition of contract review and asking yourself “what could go wrong”? How to spot these points and aim to eradicate them to ensure your clients have a smooth transaction, well that’s where our training comes into play.
Module 3: Legality
When you enroll into the course to become a certified real estate agent in Dubai, one of the primary modules is legal; but the 75 percentile of agents forget this module once they step out into the real world. Legality around real estate doesn’t only mean which area can a client buy in or how are they protected from their landlords? It also covers how one should ensure a sale transaction wherein the seller has a tenant not willing to vacate and the buyer is an end-user to whom a tenanted property is not beneficial. These and various other aspects along with the ever changing and ever improving landscape of the laws surrounding real estate need to be on the tip of a successful agent. It so happens that clients prior to even transacting with an agent ask for their advice on real estate related matters and if they suspect the agent to not be aware of their subject, then would not think of ever doing business with them. Can you blame them? Would you ever get a surgery from a doctor who is not 100% aware or comfortable with knowing what equipment needs to be used to operate on you? How to better understand the changing landscape of the legalities and keep yourself updated on the critical changes which impact your clients, well that’s where our training comes into play.
Sub Module 1: Understanding which clients to focus on and how to negotiate with them
For new agents, the excitement when a client expresses interest is heightened based on the expectation of closing the deal. Without the right filtering mechanism, new agents generally end up spending a great amount of time and effort on clients without closing a deal; which in turn leads to them losing their motivation and thinking each deal client interaction will not yield any positive result. This thought-process can be attributed to the majority of the agents failing in the market and deciding to give up. The best way to combat this is to understand how to qualify your clients so you can focus on the clients who are serious and with whom you have a higher chance of closing deals. This qualification requires putting across questions to your clients to better understand their requirements and also assessing how to best negotiate with them and represent them in order to conclude the deal. This is what we train our agents to start with as sometimes it’s more important to say no rather than saying yes to all clients. Focus, specialisation and quality go a long way rather than concentrating on quantity.
Sub Module 2: Understanding how to determine ideal investment or end-user property
When dealing with buyers, one must understand what their target is, and only then can they best source deals for the client. If someone is buying to live in the property, then the locality might hold vital importance, such as proximity to school, shops, restaurants, hospital or kids play area. On the other hand, if someone is buying to invest, then the further development of the community might hold more importance, such as an upcoming metro station, the development of a new mall or planned road connectivity. End users might require the property to be vacant so it’s vital to ensure that the tenant has contractually agreed to move out whereas the investor might be keen on buying a property where the tenant is expected to continue their lease as their target is rental yield. Furthermore, there are various other aspects which need to be considered when determining the client requirements and we ensure our agents are well tuned with these.
Sub Module 3: Understanding the difference in dealing with developers and secondary sellers
Dealing with developers is very different as compared to dealing with individual sellers. This is a skill very important for the agents to understand. From the perspective of the sellers, an individual might be more open to negotiation since they are the sole decision makers and not answerable to anyone; whereas the developer might not be open to negotiation as they are a corporation which has its bottom line and are answerable to their shareholders. Understanding this difference is vital to know if the product to offer to your clients should be from a developer or individual. Developer properties are available to all agents in the market so the competition is fierce so we focus on training our agents how to compete within this sector; or alternatively how to accumulate more properties from individual sellers wherein only few agents might have access to the property.
Sub Module 4: Understanding how to structure deals for your clients which they are happy with
In an ideal scenario, the real agent in Dubai will be representing both the parties, so therein it becomes vital to ensure that both their interests are taken care of and each party gets a fair deal which they are happy and content with. This could mean managing the expectations of both the parties and realising what is important to each of them; and what they would be willing to compromise on. We train our agents to identify these patterns and be able to structure the deal accordingly to ensure both walk away happy!
Sub Module 5: Understanding how to best carry out viewings and property showings
The golden rule of a property viewing – never walk into a property for the very first time with your client. Your client is already seeing it for the first time, make sure that it’s not your first time too! It is your job to answer all the questions that the clients may have, and be aware of the layout of the property. Your confidence is what will rub off on the client so better be well prepared. The walk through of the property should be well structured and cover all the basics which are vital for the client. How to best plan for your viewings and successfully conclude the viewing; this is what we train our agents with.
Sub Module 6: Understanding how to best approach clients to obtain exclusive listings
In the real estate business, having good control over your properties is already half the job done. Like I said earlier when dealing with individual sellers or landlords; the ability to obtain listings is an important skill, and the ability to obtain exclusive listings is a big win! If the property is only with you, then all clients or agents alike will come to you to work on the property and since the client is only working with you, you are able to obtain them the best deal. What are the steps to ensure the client is willing to give you exclusive listings, well you know the answer to that..
Are you keen on learning more about the modules to become a better agent? Subscribe to our channel/page and sign-up for our class to get a one-on-one training for REAL ESTATE AGENT in Dubai.
In the training, we will also discuss a bonus module, which in itself is a skill to master – property marketing. Without the right application and procedures to market your property, you are going to be limited in your clients. Sitting in Dubai, I’m sure you want to attract clients from across the globe; this will boil down to your marketing skills, be it across social media, property portals, google or any other medium of your choice. We show our agents how to best utilise them to obtain maximum exposure.
For more information on REAL ESTATE AGENT in Dubai, you can reach out to us via email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone +971 4 388 7440