Real estate agency

Real estate agency figures swell with housing recovery

When Kim Hyde decided to consider switching from education to real estate, she did what any teacher could advise, going out and taking a class to familiarize herself with the subject.

It turns out that it is not the others who have followed the same path coming from various backgrounds and who are still enlisting today.

In the past year in Connecticut, more than 1,000 people entered the real estate industry on a net basis, according to estimates from the Connecticut Department of Labor, an increase of 5% which is the first of the major categories of industry followed by the state. The jobs data is supported by premium gains reported by most area real estate boards as well as Connecticut realtors who represent brokers statewide.

In May, the National Association of Realtors said its own recent survey shows a growing number of people across the country are getting their real estate licenses, with 20% of those polled saying they’ve joined the business in the past few years. 12 months preceding the survey; and with the median age of officers dropping from 57 to 53 years.

Real estate remains an area dominated by those who change careers, whether because of opportunities, the loss of another job, or, in Hyde’s case, simply the result of a long-standing interest in houses and estates dating back to his childhood in Darien. The National Association of Realtors said just 5% of those polled in its most recent survey were under 30, up from 2% last year, but still a small number compared to many other fields.

Like many, Hyde entered the real estate industry later in life, interspersing raising her family with long stints as an elementary school teacher in New Canaan and Stamford before deciding to explore a career in real estate.

After taking a class at Norwalk Community College – she remembers it was a large class with an eclectic collection of people from different backgrounds sharing a common goal – Hyde graduated from Connecticut and then went on to is put to find an agency.

She said Darien agencies were interested in speaking to her, with Hyde ultimately linked to the Darien office of William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty, based in Stamford. She said it helped her want to do it full time and was ready to navigate the slow upward earnings curve that many agents encounter as they work to build their base of contacts and possibly , lists.

“I found each of the agencies to be very welcoming and interested and ready to do whatever it takes to help,” said Hyde. “They’ve just rolled out the welcome mat.”

Holly Giordano, a veteran compared to Hyde, with two years of experience as an agent for William Pitt Sotheby’s, said she had a similar experience at Darien after a previous career as a psychoanalyst, attributing it to the need for the new talent agency after cutting staff in the leaner years after the Great Recession.

“I was hired (in 2014) and little by little over the year we had more and more people,” said Giordano. “It reflected what was going on in the market so we slowly saw an increase, which is good. From what I’ve seen of Sotheby’s hiring, they hire people who want to do it full time and get engaged.

But it’s not just Darien – Mike Feldman, the president of Connecticut Realtors who is an agent in Stamford with William Raveis Real Estate, said interest in real estate as a career is on the rise across the board. State, and he expects this to continue.

Hyde believes she will meet her Basic Income expectations in less than two years, and says she is comfortable with that timeline and the ability to grow her income from there. In the meantime, she spends all of her time with clients and colleagues that she can, whether it’s touring open houses or just around town with acquaintances. She advises anyone considering getting into real estate to take advantage of the educational opportunities available and to swallow as much information as possible.

“It’s a process,” Hyde said. “It takes time – it doesn’t happen right away. “
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