It’s hard to understand the struggles and the demands of the real estate industry when you are outside of it. When was the last time you’ve been told that you are so lucky to have such a flexible schedule as a real estate agent? We both know that is an understatement because, in reality, finding balance in life while working as a real estate agent is more complicated than people think.
More so, the real estate agent’s job puts a lot of pressure on their schedule and family. Because most of your clients have 9-5 jobs, most of your work happened in the off hours and the weekends. You want your time outside of the 9-5 work schedule to be quality time spent with your family and not time spent on the phone with unreasonable clients.
Realtors and brokers often have to deal with late-night offer requests, unexpected showings, early-morning negotiations, and no actual days off. The industry’s fast-paced nature only makes things more complicated since, in a hot real estate market, homes sell quickly, and agents need to be ready at a moment’s notice.
Nonetheless, the life of a real estate agent is hard, even if they are single. Bring a family into the equation and you might have trouble with finding your balance. With this article, we hope to provide a bit of insight into a real estate agent’s life with a family and help you balance out work and family with some practical ideas.
The importance of work-life balance
Since we talked so much about work-life balance, we should also mention why it is essential in the first place. When work takes over the vast majority of your waking hours, you better be sure that your relationships will suffer. Without work-life balance, you will experience stress and anxiety, and most don’t realize that those emotions are often taken out on loved ones. What makes a good real estate agent doesn’t necessarily make a good parent or spouse, and the same applies vice-versa. Without finding the balance, you will miss important events and milestones, and more often than not, you will trade in time on healthy habits to take more work.
Suppose you manage to find a work-life balance as a real estate agent. In that case, you can enjoy such benefits as getting more sleep, personal growth, better physical and emotional health which will ultimately bring more enjoyment in life. With balance, you can also improve your work performance and become more productive, efficient, and dedicated. For many people, it might sound counterintuitive, and many don’t understand how less work each day would make you more successful. However, taking time away from work can improve your engagement, boost productivity, and decrease the number of sick days you take.
How to find work-life balance as an agent
Now that we went over the importance of work-life balance, it is time to dive a little deeper and determine how you can achieve this balance as an agent. And what better way to receive great advice about work-life balance than from experts in the field that managed to find it. So, are you looking for ways to become more balanced? Here is what experts weighed in on what they’ve learned throughout the years.
Set boundaries and impose them
Setting boundaries is probably one of the most overlooked aspects of having a balanced work-life relationship. Maybe you are too nice and can’t refuse an after-hours call from your client. Perhaps you are being interrupted during your work schedule by a family member, especially now that most real estate agents switched to closing real estate transactions from home with virtual tech.
You might be early in your career and hungry for business, so that you are willing to spend days and nights on the phone with clients. Regardless of the reason, set boundaries, or you will be burnt out before you know it, and life will become unbearable. Create a habit of not answering the phone after a certain hour unless a client is in dire need. It might be hard to set boundaries on home buyers since they are about to engage in a major financial decision. A home purchase can change their life, and when imposing limitations, you have to be flexible.
Make sure you share the boundaries at the beginning of your working relationship and make sure that your client is aware of your working hours as well as your upcoming vacation days.
Get better at time management
Planning is one of the most overlooked aspects of a real estate agent’s life. There are so many unexpected things that could happen that it’s hard to make a schedule and stick with it. Make a list of things you must do, should do, and would like to do. In doing so, you can prioritize what must be done and the aspects that require your time and attention. Don’t just lay-out your tasks on paper, but try to allocate time for each one of them just as you would with a meeting.
Putting your tasks on a schedule along with meetings helps you get them done, and it prevents you from putting them off until later in the day when you should take a break. Try to plan activities with your family, and spend time with them as it is going to build your relationship and create wholesome memories. You don’t want your kids to remember a parent that is forever occupied with work, on their phone all the time. That is why it is essential to allocate and plan even your family time; that way, you won’t let anything else interfere during that special time where you bond with your family.
Good time management as a real estate agent might sound impossible for many, but it really isn’t. Planning everything ahead of time helps even if you only manage to stick to your schedule with about 60% accuracy because now you have a metric and you can find a way to improve it.
Become more efficient
With practice, you can become more efficient and better at completing your tasks, and it would take less time than usual. Agents spend plenty of time with their clients, and it’s important to know that other aspects of your job are being done. There are many ways you can become more efficient at doing your job, such as learning a few tricks and tips from your colleagues, implementing a technique that could help you with time management, or read a good real estate-related book that would provide you with some useful information.
Being able to complete your tasks quicker and more efficiently means that you now have more time for your family and yourself. A day that starts in a panic usually continues in a panic, but a day that begins with clear priorities will most likely run smoothly and keep you focused on the next thing to achieve. Become more efficient and you will be one step closer to achieving that work-life balance we’ve been talking about.
Treat your family as your most important client
Your most important clients are usually the clients that help you get paid the big bucks, and you make sure that everything goes smoothly with that client. Treating your partner and family with the same dedication is just as crucial if you want to find that work-life balance. If you are married for a few years, and children come into the picture, things become more difficult as more time is being invested in raising the child by both parties, and romance after kids is not the same. Things might get even more out of hand if both you and your partner are working together in real estate.
Would you cancel a million-dollar seller? Obviously not, and you would probably go to the extent of rescheduling everything else. Treat your family like a million-dollar sale, and roll-out the red carpet for them every time you have the opportunity. Take advantage of every moment you get to spend with your loved ones and make sure they receive the same drop-everything, million-dollar treatment.
Know when to ask for help
We are humans and we can’t do it all by ourselves. It’s not a shame to ask for help when you need it. One of the major factors contributing to stress and feeling out of control is being the type of person who doesn’t rely on others for help and doesn’t communicate effectively. Opposite to that is a workplace where everyone openly communicates and supports each other, making it a great work environment.
Being a team player and asking for help when needed will spare you a lot of stress, help you complete your tasks faster, and build a stable relationship with your colleagues. Building a real estate team is just as important as cooperating with your life-long partner to comprehend all your parent and spouse duties. The same principles apply in your personal life, between you and your partner.
Treat your relationship as a collaboration, and be understanding of each other. Just because you have a demanding job in the real estate industry, you shouldn’t use it as an excuse to slack on family responsibilities. In any circumstances, don’t start an argument trying to diminish your partner’s contribution to the family’s well-being by highlighting how hard-working you are; it never ends well for either side.
Be a team player both at work and at home. Work together with your partner to lighten the load and give each other time to relax and have fun.
The real estate industry is harsh, and if you decided to take this train, be prepared for what’s to come. Finding a real estate agent is easy with RealEstateAgent.com but being one is a totally different story, especially if a family becomes mixed in the equation. Finding work-life balance is not an easy thing to come by in a family where one or both partners work as realtors. However, many real estate agents with a family managed to find that work-life balance. With their help, we have listed a few useful pieces of advice that will help you find balance in your life and achieve success both at work and at home.
Do you agree with our advice on how to find a work-life balance as an agent? What do you think are the most effective ways to find the balance between work and life? Let us know in the comments below. If you find our advice useful, spread the word and share this content on all your social media platforms.