As many new agents quickly discover, selling real estate is a highly competitive business. With over 1.5 million agents in the United States right now, it’s become harder than ever to stand out from the crowd. But with low interest rates and high demand fueling the current housing market boom, a record number of new agents are getting into real estate sales every day.
However, the industry is going through a period of major disruption. Services and websites such as Redfin and Zillow are changing the way consumers buy and sell properties. For such an important industry, the real estate market feels particularly vulnerable to technological advancements and could be a new application far from completely disrupting the entire industry.
For these reasons, many agents realize that a career in real estate sales is no longer desirable and they leave the industry. But whether an agent has been selling real estate for 3 months or 30 years, most have invested a lot of time, money and resources to get their license.
At this point, most agents simply let their license expire to avoid having to pay all the fees, dues, and expenses necessary to maintain an active license. But once that happens, the agent no longer has the opportunity to make money from his real estate license.
This is the dilemma that Dana Jensen tried to solve with her company, Realty Connect. Like most agents, Jensen started helping people buy and sell homes when he got his license in 2003. But when the 2007 financial crisis caused the real estate market to crash in 2008, Jensen s found himself in a difficult position.
“When the market crashed, so did my career.” Jensen explains. “But I just thought I failed, and it hurt. I hated telling everyone I quit. I had worked so hard for my license, but I couldn’t afford all the MLS fees, association dues and realtor expenses. Otherwise, no broker would hire me. Why would they? I didn’t fit their model.
But Jensen realized he wasn’t the only agent caught in the crossfire and recognized this gap in the market as a unique opportunity. During his research, he discovered that hundreds of thousands of agents silently leave the industry each year. Unfortunately, most simply let their licenses expire or become inactive. This became the inspiration for his business, Realty Connect. When the market recovered a few years later, Jensen opened his first office in Reston, Virginia.
However, Realty Connect is different from most brokerages. Although its agents hold active real estate licenses, they do not personally engage in helping clients buy or sell homes. Rather, they refer their clients to its network of over 50,000 top-notch agents, who represent the client and complete the entire transaction. In exchange, its agents earn 25% to 75% referral fees depending on the type of transaction.
This innovative business model offers Realty Connect agents an easy way to keep their license active for just $100 per year without all the cost and stress of being a real estate agent. Jensen adds, “When I started this business, everyone laughed at my idea. They never thought it would work. But I was able to prove the concept, and now over 1,000 new agents join Realty Connect every year!
The average referral commission its agents earn is $3,200. Since they can refer in all 50 states, most agents do 2-3 referrals each year. Jensen says that “most people don’t know that over 70% of all real estate transactions are generated by referrals every year, so we’re just trying to own that space.”
And it works. Since launching in 2015, Jensen has expanded his business to 9 states, making Realty Connect the largest independent real estate broker in the United States. However, Jensen still has ambitious growth plans and will be in 16 more states by the end of 2022.
For more information, visit RealtyConnect.com
Company Name: Real Estate Connect
Contact: Dana Jensen
E-mail: Send an email
Address:1818 Library St. Suite 500
Town: To rest on
State: AV 20190
The country: United States