How to become an estate agent

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Are you confident, chatty and good at putting yourself in other people’s shoes? You might want to consider a career as an estate agent.

In this guide, we’ll look at:

  • What do estate agents do?
  • How much do estate agents earn?
  • What skills do I need to become an estate agent?
  • What estate agent qualifications do I need?
  • Tell me how to become an estate agent.
  • What do estate agent apprenticeships involve?

'Confident, chatty and a great communicator? A career as an estate agent could be for you'

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What do estate agents do?

An estate agent sells and rents out property. That could be houses and flats to families, couples and other people, or it could be offices to businesses and companies. Estate agents act as negotiators between the buyers (or renters) of a property, and the people who are selling the property. 

Being an estate agent is hard work that requires dedication
and a real knack for selling.

Estate agent responsibilities include:

  • Meeting with property sellers and landlords to assess and put a value (ie cost) on their property.
  • Arranging appointments with customers who want to buy or rent a property.
  • Show the properties to buyers or renters – these are usually called viewings.
  • Get feedback on the viewings.
  • Negotiating between buyers and sellers to arrange a price everyone is happy with.
  • Managing sales of properties that are sold at auction.
  • Meeting sales targets.
  • Have an understanding of the legal issues around buying property.

How much do estate agents earn?

The starter salary of an estate agent tends to be quite low – around £15,000. An experienced estate agent can expect to earn between £20,000 and £25,000. A highly experience estate agent who manages an estate agency could earn a salary of up to £40,000. Many employers will also give bonuses based on how well you’re doing.

What skills do I need to become an estate agent?

Is being an estate agent right for you? Have a look at these important transferable skills and qualities and see if yours match up:

  • Negotiation skills.
  • The ability to sell and encourage customers to make a purchase.
  • Customer service skills.
  • Organised with good attention to detail.
  • Brilliant interpersonal skills – able to get on with your colleagues and customers.
  • Communication skills – able to explain your point and persuade others of your point.
  • Good numeracy skills.
  • Able to tackle problems and come up with solutions.
  • Able to work under pressure and deal with multiple deadlines.
  • Confident, enthusiastic and able to take initiative.
  • Able to put yourself in other people’s shoes – estate agents’ responsibilities include helping people when they’re making a huge, expensive decision in their lives.

What estate agent qualifications do I need?

You won’t usually need any qualifications to get started in the role, but there are some qualifications that will progress your career as an estate agent.

Estate agent qualifications include the Level 2 and Level 3 CPD Certified Estate Agent Diplomas, as well as CeMAP (Certificate in Mortgage Advice and Practice).

Tell me how to become an estate agent

You don’t need a degree to become an estate agent. Experience in customer service, for example through jobs in retail, will help set you apart when it comes to applying for jobs.

Work experience will give you the edge. Contact your local estate agencies to arrange a work placement. Ideally you should spend some time work shadowing, going to viewings and watching a negotiation. Read this for more on how to make the most of work experience.

What do estate agent apprenticeships involve?

You can train as an estate agent by doing a property services apprenticeship. This means you’ll learn on the job, while earning a salary and studying towards a professional qualification. Learn all about apprenticeships here.

Estate agent apprenticeships allow you to learn on the job

There are two options: intermediate (you’ll train as an estate agent administrator or lettings administrator) and advanced (your role would be estate agent or letting agent).

As a property services apprentice, your tasks might include advising people on available properties, arranging appointments and viewings, helping market properties and putting customers in touch with people who can help during the house-buying process.

On the advanced level apprenticeship, you’d learn more about the different areas of selling properties, including getting instructions from customers and sending invoices for costs. You’d hand over keys to new owners (or renters), find references for new tenants and gather legal documents.

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Image credits

Lead image via Freepik; estate agent via Flickr; couple with keys via Freepik.



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