Deciding to get into the real estate industry can be an exciting, but very confusing time in your life; you pursue your license through state classes and examination and then it’s time to find your broker, where you can learn the real ins and outs of the business, and ideally, make some great money selling real estate. What a lot of new real estate agents don’t realize is that their choice in broker has a huge impact on their success in the real estate industry.

A good broker can help feed you leads, will educate you on the entire sales process from showing to inspection to closing, and can help you navigate the rough first few months of business. A bad broker can be detrimental to your success, as they can leave you feeling very alone and confused in this new and overwhelming industry. Not only does the individual broker effect your growth in real estate, but the kind of agency they operate can have an effect as well. Enter the boutique Berkeley real estate office; it’s a small office of about 20 agents. The name may be unfamiliar, but they have a tight-knit feel and work mainly off of referrals. These boutique agencies are quite different than the brand name agencies like Keller Williams, Coldwell Banker and Century 21, where the brand precedes the experience.

So how do you know which agency is right for you? Surely they will both have their advantages and disadvantages, so we took the time to illustrate both for you:

National Brand – A nationally branded broker may appeal to both you and the masses when it comes to clients. Most everyone has heard of Century 21, seen the billboards for Keller Williams and can tell you the most recent Coldwell Banker commercial that’s airing. This is definitely one of the biggest perks of going with a nationally-known broker, is the immediate brand recognition and automatic report just for being associated with them. Clients will recognize your branding and you can feel much more confident as a new agent with an entire office of familiar support behind you. But not so fast, because familiarity can also hurt a broker. Since many people don’t understand the concept of franchised brokers, they may have had a terrible experience with a different broker under the same name, and automatically associate the negative experience to your company. It doesn’t matter if the broker was based in a state 200 miles away or even a local competitor’s office, if the brand is the same, it’s hard for clients to differentiate between the two.

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