Best Year End Advice For Real Estate Agents
Best End of Year Advice for Real Estate Agents
In just a couple of weeks, the New Year will be upon us. It was a fast twelve months, wasn’t it? It feels like I was talking to you about fall home maintenance only a couple of weeks ago when it was actually in early October. Many trees were still stubbornly holding on to a few leaves, there was no snow on the ground, and we had not even had a hard frost. Now here we are decking the halls and talking about closing out the year and getting ready for 2019.
Admittedly I approach the new year with excitement and optimism tinged with a dash of trepidation and uncertainty. The new year is, after all, filled with mystery! What new clients will I meet? Which buyers and sellers will I reconnect with in the coming year? What changes in the market will surprise me? Which of my predictions will be proven correct? Am I ready for what lies ahead and if not what do I need to do so I don’t fall short of my expectations?
As the days and weeks of the next year unfold, I plan to be ready. One of the ways I prepare is by starting the year without the clutter of the last twelve months. It starts now. Here are some tasks we can take care of before January is on the doorstep because ready or not, soon 2019 will be knocking on the front door!
Last Chance for Tax Deductions
Do you plan to take a real estate or business related course? Now would be a good time to sign up. Not only is the beginning of the year slower paced, but if you sign up now before 2019, you may be able to take the deduction if applicable on this year's taxes.
Make a charitable donation. Since we are talking about 2018 tax benefits, now is your last chance for contributing some cash or assets to your favorite non-profit.
Be Prepared With a Fresh Look
When we talk about business needs for a Real Estate professional, don’t overlook your car. If your lease is expiring this year or you plan to purchase a new vehicle do the shopping and looking now before the busy season arrives when you may not have time. When you settle on the make and model, ask your salesperson to send you a reminder when the best deal is available.
Update your Business Profile. Refresh your bio. Add any achievements or professional awards or certifications. Add any pertinent and interesting personal updates like marriage or children. If you have added some community service to your life, this is the perfect time to let people know. It’s good to update your professional headshot as well and team photo. Don’t forget to update Social media and other professional sites where you are active.
Clean up your data act. Go through your emails and archive what you need to save and delete what you don’t. If the amount of emails hanging out in your inbox is daunting, sort through the last three months and archive all the rest just in case. It also makes sense to organize your computer files, especially if you can never locate a document or image you know you saved. Review your bookmarks too. You might find a gem that you kept and forgot you had.
Learn from Last Years Hits and Misses
Review the goals you set last year. Are there any you didn’t complete? If they still fit in with your overall business plan add them to your 2019 list. If you haven’t thought about goals for the new year, start that project now.
Review your budget. Did you have a surplus this year or fall short of what you needed for optimal effectiveness? If you didn’t allocate enough in 2018, determine whether it is in the best interest of your business to increase your budget or do some trimming.
Improve your chances for a successful year. Pay attention to the economic, financial and housing market analysts for both the national and local market. Their input will help you determine what real estate will look like next year. This valuable knowledge will help you establish realistic expectations leading to attainable professional goals.
Sprinkle with Holiday Sparkle and Shine
Spread some holiday joy. There is no better time than the winter holiday season to connect with those on your mailing list. Don't forget vendors you work with on a regular basis. Let coworkers who stepped up when you needed a special favor or an employee who went the extra mile know you appreciate them with a handwritten note of gift.
Last but not least, spend as much quality time with family and friends over this festive season as possible. Celebrate! Be happy. Stay safe.
As always, thanks for reading my post!
- Joe Houghton