Become A Professional

Become active in your local chapter of the National Association of Realtors, and investigate its professional education offerings. The one with which you will be initially concerned is the Realtors Institute, which is composed of three individual courses. When you successfully complete all three of them all, you earn the right to use the term GRI (Graduate Realtors Institute). It is a designation that is recognized by others in the profession. Try to complete it sometime during your first two years. The course material will be helpful in your job, you will start to get a wider perspective of the profession, and you will meet energetic and career-minded professionals from other offices and other cities. The contacts will be invaluable in establishing your professional network, so cultivate and keep track of them.

While I was researching this subject I logged on to several state Realtor organization's websites to get an overview of their GRI offerings. Here's the GRI course descriptions I found at the Texas Association of Realtors web site ( GRI 1: Ethics and Liability (8 hours); Contract Forms (8 hours); Contract Procedures (8 hours); Finance (8 hours). GRI 2: Prospecting (8 hours); Seller Services (8 hours); Buyer Services (8 hours); New Homes (8 hours). GRI 3: Investment and Taxation (8 hours); Property Management (8 hours); Technology Tools (8 hours); Goals and Productivity (8 hours). Were I a new agent in the Lone Star State I would do my best to attend these sessions and earn my GRI.

You will also be inundated with offerings of real estate-oriented seminars and lectures. Most will be extremely well researched presentations given by individuals who are professional in every sense of the word. But beware, some are high-hype sessions given by people with monumental egos whose main goal seems to be to impress you with their superstar status. Until you have been around for a while, you might want to stick to the Realtors Institute offerings.

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