Today’s sophisticated agents want more from their real estate brokerage than just the basic file review, agent supervision, and commission disbursement. Successful brokerages today are providing more and more services to attract and retain productive agents. So if you don’t want your brokerage to get left in the dust in 2022, you will need to step up the services you provide.

Offering high-quality services will not only help you attract more agents, but better agents. You can also more easily justify the higher splits and fees you might need to compete in your market.

In this article, I will uncover the full list of the services that your brokerage may choose to provide, a detailed description of each, and the estimated costs so you can make the best decision for your brokerage.

Buyer & Seller Leads

Dream Big

Leads are fast becoming one of the most popular offerings of a real estate brokerage today. These are seller and buyer leads that are generated by the brokerage and referred to the agents for an additional referral fee.

Traditionally, agents pay an additional split of up to 30% for these referred clients. If managed correctly, you can make this very profitable for both the agents and your brokerage. Newer agents and agents who close less than 10 transactions are typically attracted to brokerages that refer leads.

Over the last few years, the number of brokerages offering agents buyer and seller leads has exploded. It’s easy to see why: Instead of hiring expensive marketers to generate leads, brokers today can just buy leads from Zillow or BoldLeads with one click. The more brokerages offer leads, the more agents expect them.

Some brokerages that have mastered these lead generation systems have added a Lead Manager who is responsible for generating and managing leads as well as training and holding the referred agents accountable to follow through to a successful closing.

Why Smart Brokers Are Providing Leads in 2022

Your return on investment (ROI) on providing leads will be directly related to your training and accountability to the agent. Brokerages that do this well can see a three to four times return on their money. Additionally, there are a lot of talented agents who just need a little momentum in their business, and providing some leads may provide that.

The Costs of Providing Leads

Of course, the cost of providing your agents leads will vary wildly depending on where your brokerage is located. But if you want to provide enough leads to attract and maintain motivated newer agents, then you should expect to spend anywhere from $10,000 to $100,000 per month on leads. Once you throw in a Listing Manager, you can expect to pay another $45,000 per year in salary.

Digital & Print Marketing

Digital & Print Marketing

One of the most important lessons learned over my 26-year real estate career is that nothing is more important in an agent’s business than them getting their marketing out consistently. Despite all the systems and tools that are available, over 80% of agents still fail to follow up with their clients after a sale—not even a postcard!

These services can include mailing monthly postcards to their sphere of influence (SOI) and farm area as well as helping agents with social media content and creating professional listing and buyer presentations. Your brokerage can provide marketing services through software, outsourcing, or, when you’re large enough, hiring a full-time Marketing Manager.

Why Smart Brokers Are Providing Digital & Print Marketing in 2022

If you want to add a service that provides value and measurable returns in both productivity and profits, then taking over your agent’s marketing is the answer. Agent marketing will attract other agents, increase referrals and repeat business from the agents’ SOI, and best of all, it helps maintain your brokerage’s brand image and standards.

Digital & Print Marketing Benefits vs Costs Breakdown

Service or TaskBenefitCost
Business CardsMaintain your brand image and standards.
Attracts all agents who wish to improve their social media marketing.
$30 / 500 cards
Social Media ContentMaintain your brand image and standards.
Attracts image-conscious agents who wish to have a professional or polished look.
$0-$200 month
Agent Video and Video ProductionMaintain your brand image and standards.
Attracts all agents who wish to have a professional or polished look.
$100-$500 / video, part-time or full-time Marketing Manager. $20,000-$60,000/Yr
Agent Headshots and PhotographyMaintain your brand image and standards.
Attracts all agents who wish to have a professional or polished look.
$100-$300 / shoot
Custom Listing and Buyer PresentationsMaintain your brand image and standards.
Attracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents.
Part-time or full-time Marketing Manager. $20,000-$60,000/Yr
Just Listed and Just Sold PostcardsMaintain your brand image and standards.
Attracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents.
$75 / 100 Postcards (includes print and mail) Plus part-time or full-time Marketing Manager. $20,000-$60,000/Yr
Farm Area MailersMaintain your brand image and standards.$375 / 500 postcards includes print and mail. Plus part-time or full-time Marketing Manager. $20,000-$60,000/Yr

If you’re thinking about offering your agents digital and print marketing services in 2022, you should check out Lab Coat Agents Marketing Center, a turnkey marketing solution built specifically for real estate agents.

They offer gorgeous and easy-to-use branded templates for social media, flyers, brochures, open house signs, and much more. It’s like Canva on steroids.

Visit Lab Coat Agents Marketing Center

Listing Preparation & Listing Marketing

Listing Preparation

If you’re trying to recruit listing agents, then offering listing preparation and marketing is a no-brainer. Many high-producing agents are good at lead generation and sales but can fall short when it comes to marketing their listings.

That means you can take a big burden off their plate by offering to handle all the details of listing preparation, like cleaning and staging as well as their listing marketing. This includes things like photography, video (and video production), sign installation, MLS input, and promotion.

Don’t expect your employees to handle all of these details. These services should be outsourced until your real estate brokerage is large enough to support a full-time Listing Manager. Be sure to negotiate volume discounts with your vendors to keep your expenses within budget.

Why Smart Brokers Are Providing Listing Preparation & Marketing in 2022

One benefit of providing Listing Preparation and Marketing services is the ability to attract the right agents for your brokerage, but there are other benefits you may not be aware of.

Maintain Your Brand Image & Standards

Doing the marketing for your agents ensures that the marketing is done to the standards of your real estate brokerage and in line with your branding. No more cell phone pics, dark and blurry images, or real estate signs printed with the wrong colors or font. Just this by itself this will attract image-conscious home sellers.

Listings Sell Faster & for a Higher Price

When your marketing is done correctly, you will attract more buyers. The more buyers who sell your listings, the greater chance they will sell fast and for top dollar, and this will make your agents look good!

Higher Splits & Fees

Believe it or not, many productive and top-producing agents are happy to pay their broker more for the benefit of having all the Listing Marketing done for them. This provides them the confidence they need to go after luxury listings and gives them back more time to do what they love—make more sales!

Listing Preparation & Marketing Benefit vs Costs Breakdown

Service or TaskBenefitCost
StagingAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents and sells listings faster and for more money. Maintains brand image and standards.$200-$400 / listing
Virtual StagingAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents and sells listings faster and for more money. Maintains your brand image and standards.$15-$199 / listing
Deep CleaningAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents and sells listings faster and for more money. Maintains your brand image and standards.$200-$400 / listing
Floorplan or Matterport 3DAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents.$100-$150 / listing
PhotographyAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents. Maintains your brand image and standards.$100-$300 / listing
Drone PhotographyAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents and luxury home sellers.$100-$300 / listing
Video Production and EditingAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents and luxury home sellers. Maintains your brand image and standards.$200-$2500 / listing
MLS Input and ManagementAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents. Maintains your brand image and standards.$30-$60 / listing or part-time or full-time Listing Manager. $30,000- $45,000/Yr
Listing Promotion: Social Media Channels, Email Blast, Newspaper, TV, and OnlineAttracts all agent types and sells listings faster and for more money. Maintains your brand image and standards.$0 cost if you are effective at email blasts and social media.
$2000-$20,000 / month if you are consistently advertising on newspaper, TV, and online.

Transaction Management

Transaction management

If you have a highly accountable group of agents, then any task you can take off their plate will increase their productivity. Simply put: If your agents are chasing paperwork, they are not lead generating. Transaction management is an easy and low-cost way to get some of those paperwork chasing tasks off your agents’ schedules.

There are two ways you can provide this service to your agents. You can choose to offer this as an a la carte service, but I prefer to increase my fees and include it on every file.

Why Smart Brokers Are Providing Transaction Management in 2022

Having your brokerage take over the transaction once it has gone under contract will not only free up your agent’s time, it will also eliminate the challenge of chasing down paperwork from your agents to complete your required brokerage file.

Since you must have a complete brokerage file on the transaction anyway, and you have to pay someone to manage that file, it is easy and inexpensive to add this transaction management to the list of services your brokerage provides.

Transaction Management Benefits vs Cost Breakdown

Service or TaskBenefitCost
Transaction ManagementAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents.

Can be added to the tasks of managing the brokerage file.

Agents have more time to lead generate, increasing productivity.
$200-$400 / file or full-time Transaction Manager. $30,000-$45,000/Yr

Signs & Lockboxes (Installation, Removal & Storage)

Signs and Lock Boxes

It may sound simplistic, but providing signs and lockboxes and having them installed, removed, and stored is very enticing to agents. Why? Because what self-respecting agent loves to swing a sledge hammer at a steel sign frame into a frozen lawn? No one, that’s who!

Even worse is placing 20 open house signs on busy intersections wearing a black Armani suit in 100-degree weather. Been there—hated it!

Save your agents the pain and embarrassment of having to install listing and open house signs. They will love you for the simple gesture.

To provide this service, you can contract with a local sign company to create, install, remove, and store all your brokerage’s signs. The cost is typically $30 to $50 for each install or removal.

Why Smart Brokers Are Providing Signs & Lockboxes in 2022

Maintain Your Brand Image & Standards

If I had a dollar for every time I saw one of my brokerage signs printed in the wrong color or with the wrong font, I could buy the Miami Dolphins! Most agents are not in tune with the importance of maintaining a brand, and if they have the ability to save $10 a sign by having them printed cheaper, they will.

Don’t make the mistake I did—instead, include listing and open house signs as part of your services. This will ensure that your brand is always presented with quality.

Promote Your Brand

If your listing and open house signs are branded to your brokerage, you are just paying to promote your brokerage—and the best part is you only pay when your agents take a listing or hold an open house.

Signs & Lockboxes Benefits vs Cost Breakdown

Service or TaskBenefitCost
Sign Installation, Removal & StorageAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents.

Maintain your brand image and standards.
$60 / listing
Lockbox InstallationAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents.

Maintain your brand image and standards.
$20 / listing
Open House Sign Installation & RemovalAttracts busy mid- to high-producing agents.

Maintain your brand image and standards.
$50-$100 / open house

Meetings & Events

Meetings and Events

Real estate sales is a social business, and most agents love to socialize. A healthy social schedule will not only increase agent retention, but will make recruiting easier. Real estate can also be a lonely business, and many agents are hungry for connection, especially if they are struggling.

Team Meetings

Believe it or not, team meetings are less about education and information and more about building and maintaining relationships and company culture. Coffee and donuts, or lunch right after your team meeting, can give agents a reason to socialize after the meeting. It also gives them a reason to show up besides listening to you or your Sales Manager talk shop.

Social Happy Hours

A monthly happy hour at a local brewery or trendy bar will make your agents feel like you want to get to know them better and make them feel important. Additionally, these social happy hours are a great opportunity to invite agents from other brokerages and an opportunity to check out your company’s culture.

Client Events

Client events not only build your brokerage’s brand, they provide a reason for your agents to reach out to their SOI and past clients. Many busy agents would love to throw customer appreciation events but lack the time or skills to do them, and some agents with a small SOI or past client databases wish to have an event but fear that they won’t have enough people show up. Why not give them all a helping hand and coordinate the event for them?

No need to do them monthly; quarterly or bi-annually will be enough to keep your agents in front of their SOI.

Meetings & Events Benefits vs Costs Breakdown

Service or TaskBenefitCost
Team MeetingsImproves company culture, educational requirements, and keeps agents engaged. Coffee and snacks provided.Free-$150 / meeting
Happy Hour and Social EventsImproves company culture.$200 / event
Client Appreciation EventsAttracts busy mid- to high-producing listing agents who wish to have more customer engagement.$1500-$4000 / event

Education & Training

In 2022, a real estate brokerage that wants to serve agents throughout their career must provide a full suite of agent education and training. If they’re not getting it from you, they will get it somewhere else, probably from another brokerage.

Begin by thinking about what phase of agents do you want your brokerage to serve. Next ask yourself: What skills and knowledge do they need to be successful at this phase and to push through to the next phase?

If you don’t have time for this rhetorical question, I did some of the thinking for you. Below is a short list of phases of an agent’s career as well as classes that will support them in that phase.

Review the agent phases below and decide what and how you are going to provide the right education and training for your agents.

What Kinds of Education & Training Smart Brokers Are Offering in 2022

Prelicensed

People interested in getting into real estate need access to a real estate school. Many successful brokerages either offer an in-house real estate license school or have an affiliation with a real estate license school to refer students to in exchange for promoting their brokerage to the school’s students. So if your business model includes recruiting brand-new agents, then offering prelicense education is a no-brainer.

New & Newer Agents

New and newer agents need a structured training calendar—one that can walk a new licensee through a marketing plan, lead generation strategies, and all the required tasks related to working with buyers and sellers.

Newer agents also need the support of a mentor who they can call to get their urgent questions answered. This ensures that they are doing the right thing and protects your brokerage.

Productive Agents

Busy productive agents don’t want to sit in classes week to week. They only want to attend classes that they can directly apply to their business. Productive agents are attracted to business planning, lead generation classes, and continuing education (CE) credit courses that are geared toward topics they use.

Top Producers &d Teams

Top producers and teams are looking for educational opportunities that are geared toward the latest systems, tools, and strategies that help them bring their business to the next level.

Try bringing in coaches, trainers, or top producers from other markets to teach your driven agents. Agents from outside your market area are more likely to share their secrets without the fear of a competitor taking their market share away.

Education & Training Benefits vs Costs Breakdown

Service or TaskBenefitCost
Real Estate License SchoolGreat way to have a consistent source of new agents into your company.Part-time or full-time Teacher. $10,000-$40,000/Yr
New Agent TrainingA must if your brokerage chooses to attract new or newer agents.Part-time or full-time Trainer/Mentor.

$10,000-$40,000/Yr
MentoringA must if your brokerage chooses to attract new or newer agents.Part-time or full-time Mentor.
$10,000-$40,000/Yr
Prospecting TrainingFor agents who wish to do more sales and improve their sales skills.$500-$2,000 / Training event
Continuing Education and Contract ClassesFor agents who wish to be up to date with CE credits and contract changes.$30-$40 / Agent
Business PlanningAttracts productive agents who wish to grow and create consistency in their business.$500-$2,000 / Training event
Team Building TrainingAttracts high-level agents who wish to take their business to the next level.$500-$2,000 / Training event

Office Management Services

Office Management Services

Let’s not forget that there is more to real estate brokerage services than just printing fliers, holding classes, and running team meetings. You still have to fulfill all the state mandated Managing Broker activities, like agent supervision and file compliance.

Not to mention all the management tasks that go with running a brokerage, such as financial management, reception, and recruiting.

While these services may not be on your company brochure, if you wish to have a successful brokerage, they still need to be managed. So don’t overlook the behind-the-scenes real estate brokerage Office Management Services and Tasks.

Office Management & Services Benefits vs Costs Breakdown

Services or TaskBenefitCost
ReceptionOpen and close office, answer phones, greet agents and guests.Full-time Receptionist
$28,000-$32,000/Yr
Showing ServiceSet and coordinate showings and manage feedback.$29/Agent or $20/Listing
Financial ManagementIssue commission checks, pay bills, create financial documents.Part-time or full-time Operations Manager

$15,000-$42,000/Yr
Broker File ReviewManaging Broker reviews each file for legal compliance.Full-time Licensed Managing Broker $40,000/Yr + and/or No Cap and Fees
File ComplianceBrokerage file reviewed for dates, signatures, and disclosure compliance.Part-time or full-time Transaction Manager
$15,000-$32,000/Yr
Agent RecruitingRecruit, interview, and onboard new agents.Part-time or full-time Sales Manager
$30,000-$60,00/Yr + bonus

Essential Software to Manage Real Estate Brokerage Services

Now that you have decided what services you are going to provide the agents with your real estate brokerage, next look for the software solutions that will help you deliver these services and manage your brokerage.

To keep your expenses low, use software whenever you can. Even though the upfront cost and setup of software can be pricey, it will save you money over the cost of hiring an employee.

For a full list of software solutions to run a real estate brokerage, please see our article, Essential Software for Real Estate Brokerages in 2022.

Bottom Line

The types of services you choose to offer will ultimately determine the employees you will need to successfully run your real estate brokerage. A common mistake new brokers make is offering too many services when their brokerage is small. This mistake puts too much stress on a young brokerage’s limited staff.

To avoid this misstep, you must find creative ways to provide a full range of services to your agents—all while not breaking the bank. One way to do this is to use software solutions, outsourcing, and then hire employees to manage the remaining tasks. For a complete list of employees see our recent article, The Employees You Need to Successfully Grow a Real Estate Brokerage in 2022.

Further Reading for Aspiring Broker Owners

If you are building or considering starting your own real estate brokerage, check out our growing list of industry insider articles on starting, running, and growing your brokerage.

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