#AMA | Finding Your Niche In Real Estate

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#AskMarcAnything. How do you find your niche in real estate? Or any business for that matter. Here I answer a question I get often as to why I ended up in property management when the majority of real estate agents never do it. This one key takeaway is the most valuable lesson I have learned in life.

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Real estate is a very diverse industry. You have real estate agents, loan officers, credit unions, home inspectors, pest inspectors, appraisers, title and escrow companies etc.. For this Ask Marc Anything episode I will focus on the real estate agent. I recently had a question from new agent asking how I found my niche in property management. This new agent is overwhelmed with all the different types of real estate transactions and wants to narrow down her focus to one specialty. So the advice I’m going to give is mainly for real estate but you can really apply this same concept to any industry. So the short answer is you have to do every niche possible. You have to get a taste of it all first before you can decide what’s your niche. When I started in real estate I began working with buyers. Then I took on a few seller clients, then I took on investors looking to buy multi units. When the market crashed in 2007,

I took on broker price opinions also known as BPO. These were simplified valuations for banks and was an entire industry of its own. Then I sold foreclosure properties for banks. Then I handled short sale transactions and I handled property management for a few clients. I did a few commercial and land transactions. I’ll stop there but you get the point. I did it all and got a taste of a wide range of niches. They all come with their own pros and cons and by doing them all, I learned a lot about the overall real estate industry and the various challenges. I recommend every agent out there to do the same. However once I had a taste of the various niches I knew how to narrow down what I wanted to focus on based on my own personal preferences and that was property management.

Look I’m a numbers guy and an operations guy I loved building systems and I loved tweaking those systems to become more efficient. I geek out on it. To handle property management on a large scale, you need to be efficient and excellent at it and you need to build large operational systems and put them in place. You also need to understand how each task flows into the next and how each department compliments the next department. That was right up my alley. Ninety five percent of real estate agents avoid property management. But I thrive in it. Always focus on what you like but if you’re struggling to find what you like you probably have to taste more variety within the industry.

Maybe you haven’t found it yet. Make a list of all types of transactions you have completed and categorize them. Make a list of transaction types you have not yet done. Then go out and pursue the transaction types you have not yet done. Revisit your plan in a year or two. Then you’ll know better what you like and by that time you will know your niche.