In fact, people judge you so quickly that they often form an impression before their eyes can even focus…
That means your appearance as a Realtor is crucial.
Fashion, what you wear and how you wear it, is a huge part of that appearance. It has such a huge impact that wearing a suit can even affect how you think.
In order to help you avoid the harsh judgement of your leads, we worked with stylist Dina Sherer, and HR Expert Laura Hendrick to find out what NOT to wear to work as a Realtor.
Still need help sprucing up your Realtor wardrobe? MM.LaFleur is a monthly subscription box of professional women’s clothing. Just answer a few questions online about your style needs and you’ll get 4-6 selections of clothing shipped right to your door every month. Keep the items you like and send back what you don’t. The best part? Free shipping both ways!
1.Leggings… 😬Yes, they’re more comfortable than a down blanket, but leggings are a no-go for showings, closings, the office… You get the idea.
While you can of course get away wearing them under a skirt when it’s cold out, wearing leggings to work will make you look super unprofessional.
If you’re still not convinced, millennial fashion darlings American Apparel actually printed out a warning on their leggings that said ‘THESE TIGHTS ARE NOT PANTS”.
2. Graphic T ShirtsYes, really. There is a very simple reason why graphic T shirts should be banished from your work wardrobe forever:
There is literally no combination of words that when written on your chest will make you look professional.
Think about it. What possible phrase or brand will make you look like a competent, experienced, local market expert?
Even wearing a T shirt from your brokerage’s annual gala will make it look like you forgot to put your clothes in the dryer before you ran out of the house.
Not a good look…. 🙅
3.MiniskirtsWhile it may have looked incredible at that party you went to a few weeks ago, a miniskirt is another no-go for real estate agents.
You’re not only revealing way, way too much to maintain a professional look, but they’re also damn hard to walk in.
Are you really going to bend over in front of your buyer to help her see whether or not there’s rot under a deck in a 9 inch skirt?!
I didn’t think so.
4. Anything Leather That’s Not a Bag or BeltGABBA GABBA HEY! GABBA GABBA… no way you can pull off that leather jacket anymore.
If you’re anything like me, you spent a fair amount of your time as a teenager bopping around to the Ramones and The Clash wearing your favorite black leather Perfecto jacket.
You were young, head a head full of dreams, and nothing and no one was going to tell you what to do.
Think about that message today. Does your seller want a Realtor who is defiant and cool, or a Realtor that puts their head down and grinds out a sale?
Sad I know, but it’s time to retire the black leather jacket to the back of your closet, or to your next weekend warrior night out. 😟
5.SneakersYes, I know they’re bouncy and you spent a ton of money on them, but those bright neon sneakers are sending off the wrong vibe.
You may as well wear a sign that says “I’m more interested in being comfortable than working hard.”
Don’t worry though. Shoe comfort actually has a lot less to do with bounce and softness than you think it does. Really. Ask your podiatrist!
Well made leather sole shoes that offer arch support are actually MORE comfortable after a day on your feet than those soft Adidas running shoes.
They’ll also last you YEARS if you treat them right.
6.Ripped JeansAlthough they offer the unheard of benefit of air conditioning your knees, ripped jeans send off the “I just don’t care” message that can be the kiss of death for your next deal.
In fact, ripped jeans, or jeans in general, are banned at many Manhattan brokerages that have written dress codes.
There’s a very good reason for this. Jeans are for relaxing, not working.
“People can be turned off by a broker’s clothes. If they looked like they just got out of bed or are too casual, it doesn’t give you the feeling that this person is taking care of themselves, you need to be put together.”
Allison Dubuisson, Douglass Elliman
Via: Real Estate Weekly
7.Anything that shows too much midriffIf you want doormen to mistake you for your clients teenage daughter by all means wear a midriff exposing top on your showings…
We know, Mariah Carey looked fierce in her frilly crop tops, but I have some bad news for you… You’re not Mariah Carey, it’s not 1994, and you’re showing a pied-à-terre in Murray Hill, not lip syncing on stage at the grammys.
8.Workout GearThe whole “I’m so busy I literally just ran here from my yoga class” look does not show people that you’re a super hard worker who sacrifices personal time for their career.
It shows them that you lack the ability to plan ahead.
9.Flip FlopsNo one wants to see your toes… No one wants to walk around all day talking about mortgage rates and square footage with someone who’s feet keep making flip flop noises.
Worse, think of the message you’re sending to your clients. Save them for the beach instead.
10. Over the Knee Leather or Suede BootsSure, these look pretty great and are cool in a naughty kind of way, but well, is that REALLY the message you want to send to your clients?
Plus they’re as uncomfortable as all get out which means you’re going to be uncomfortable, and look uncomfortable…
11. Giant or Distracting EarringsThese had a moment a few years ago, but for most of us, that moment passed along with black leather perfecto and Doc Martens.
Don’t worry, you can still love cool earrings on the weekends.
12. ShortsYes, it’s hot out. Yes, 3 of the listings you’re schlepping your buyers to have crummy AC. That’s still no excuse to dress like you’re heading to the beach.
13. Tube Tops or BandeausI have one word for people who think wearing a tube top to their showing is a good idea: Slippage.
14. Anything See ThroughAnother one that’s hard to resist when the mercury rises, but for most clients, a sheer dress does not inspire the confident, professional look that you need to cultivate to win hearts and minds and close deals.
15. Floppy Hats… or Pretty Much ANY Hats That Aren’t WarmLooking like you just jumped out of the back of a smoke filled VW bus at Coachella doesn’t exactly inspire confidence as a real estate professional does it?
Don’t worry though. No one is coming for your toque with the fuzzy ball on top! In the winter pretty much all bets are off and fashion takes a back seat to warmth.
What Not to Wear as a Realtor: Advice from the Pros
Lindsay Narain, Founder & Designer, VAUGHAN
“You should NEVER wear something ill fitting, too tight or uncomfortable looking. The last thing you want is to have a client thinking you’re fidgeting and squirming because you’re being untruthful or trying to hustle a deal!”
Laura Handrick, Human Resources Expert Fitsmallbusiness.com
“As a realtor, you have a little more flexibility in your dress code than a corporate employee, such as a business executive at a bank or an HR manager. Nonetheless, what you wear speaks volumes about your professionalism. If you’re hosting an open house, taking clients to look at property or meeting sellers to sign close documents, you need to dress the part of a professional; nice slacks or skirt, button down blouse or sweater — nothing too tight, revealing or bling y. In fact, sleeveless sun dresses, ripped jeans, leggings, piercings or anything that reveals cleavage or your belly ring will scream ‘I’M NOT A PROFESSIONAL, I JUST DO THIS GIG FOR EXTRA PARTY MONEY”. That’s probably not the image you want to portray.”
Amber Nuetzel, Merchandising Manager, Ever-Pretty
“Don’t wear anything too sexy, meaning nothing skin tight and no thigh-high slits. If you want to be on the safe side, these are some tried and true business casual staples: slacks, blouses, pencil skirts, button downs, flats (closed-toe) or heels, and tailored dresses.”
Men… You’re NEXT
Hey bros. Don’t think we forgot about you. I hate to say it, but something tells me you need WAY more help than we do when it comes to Realtor fashion.
That’s why we’ve devoted an entire article next week devoted to the sins Realtor dudes make. Like square toe shoes…(gulp), light jeans, (ick), and brightly colored shirts and ties… (yikes!)
Over to You
What do you think of our list? Any fashion nightmares you think we need to add?