Pro-tips For Staying Profitable In Real Estate Today

What if you could sit down with a diverse group of experienced real estate professionals, and ask them for advice? Well, we kind of did that for you. I sat down with a handful of experienced real estate agents and asked them “How do you become more profitable?”, and got some juicy answers.

Contents of this interview also come out with our partner, RISMedia.


We’re gonna summarize their tips here, so any agent looking to be more profitable in the RE industry will find this blog not only helpful but easy to digest. Because in this business, time is money. And if you’re here, reading this blog, you’re looking for pro-tips and fast. Today’s market is a wild one, so there is no time to waste and no room for mistakes. Read on to find out what other realtors like yourself value the most.


“Understand what profitability is; it’s not just gross, it’s net.”
— Rick Harris

Rick Harris is a long-established and highly successful broker for John L. Scott. He talked about what it means to be profitable, and how it often differs from your typical understanding of the phrase. You may already understand the difference between gross and net, but for those who need a refresher, I’ll elaborate. Gross profit is how much money a company earns from the production of its product or service offered.

For example, you could say you made $1 million dollars last year, so that was your gross income. The net income is the profit that remains after all expenses and costs to do business have been subtracted from your revenue. For example, you made that million bucks but you spent about $300k on marketing, software, new hires, and your office lease. So your net was actually $700k.

So what Rick is saying, to simplify, is don’t get too focused on that big number you made last quarter, year, etc. Remember to consider how much you spend on everything that got you to that number, then subtract it. That will make your true profitability crystal clear.


“I have the mindset of making a lot of money. You have to figure out what you want in life first, then what’s gonna get you to that.”
— Lindsey Broadwell

Lindsey Broadwell is a Michigan native realtor, operating Broadwell Homes with ReMax Nexus. She believes that to be a successful, profitable realtor you should be focusing on what you already do best. After all, that’s probably why inspired you to get into the industry right? So you should take advantage of what you know, what you’re good at, and focus on crushing it there.

Delegate the other stuff to someone else, like a virtual assistant. Let a remote professional handle the less glamorous, nitty-gritty stuff. You shouldn’t be bogging yourself trying to master something that you don’t even know works for you, yet. Focus on your strengths, first and always. This also means don’t chase “shiny objects”. Meaning, don’t get caught up trying to keep up with the latest tech or some hip tactic.

We often slow ourselves down trying to conform to something that doesn’t fit our existing skillset. We waste time trying to do what the next person is doing when we should be focusing on what drives us already. If you can find a way to try new things, without impacting your existing workflow, then by all means give it a shot. Just don’t let it get in your way before it becomes profitable to you.


“You know what I think is sexy? Forms, and systems. If you’re getting up every day and doing the same job over again, instead of having some system that works for you, you’re definitely decreasing your profitability.”
— Paula Monthofer

Paula Monthofer is a realtor from Arizona, where she owns and operates Realty One Group Mountain Desert. She wasn’t shy about her appreciation for systems that improve organization and productivity. Be it an existing CRM to monitor/track what’s important to you, or a system you created yourself to stay efficient. Being organized is a huge part of what makes a serious realtor profitable.

For example, the client intake sheet is of utmost importance to an agent like Paula. Stay on top of who you’re working with, manage your inventory, see what’s happening and what’s not happening, and where you’re at in different stages with different people. Time spent searching for a number, composing the same email you always send, or asking someone for a status update is time wasted. Use a CRM to set notifications and reminders, to update everyone involved on what’s due and what’s changed.

Another bonus of using different systems for your data and documentation is customization. You should be branding as much as you can, so your future clients and current clients never forget who’s working for them.


“Success is not who you do business with, but who you do not do business with.”
— Rick Harris

That quote Rick used may have been around longer than him, but nonetheless, it’s just as relevant now as ever. Too many agents get caught up in trying to “hustle” as much as they humanly can. Reaching out to every single lead personally, hungry for anything and everything. The problem that can arise there, is you waste a lot of time on people who aren’t worth it. Don’t forget, not all leads are created equal!

If Rick gets a text from a prospective client and he calls them back and they don’t answer, he’s done. Next! This might seem cutthroat or like it’s missing opportunities, but he doesn’t see it that way. “Some clients take up too much time, money, and energy. Sometimes being profitable means not working with a client,” said Paula, who seemed to agree with Rick.

As you become more successful, you gain the luxury of choosing who you work with. If someone is dragging their feet, being difficult, not communicating in a timely manner, etc; cut them loose. Focus on someone who isn’t doing those things. Better yet, move that cold-lead to a virtual assistant to handle. Let them bug that client with texts, emails, and calls until they’re ready to make a move. Freeing you up to build relationships with warm leads.


This is the general consensus regarding staying profitable in real estate today. It was clear in our talk that these three highly successful realtors felt very strongly about the advice they were giving. These lessons are simple, effective, and hard to argue with. For those who love bullet points and lists, here is a simplified breakdown…

  • Be picky about your time. Clients who give you business but not necessarily profit need to be delegated to someone not as busy as you are. Time is money!
  • 71% of every translation is a co-op. Don’t burn bridges by having bad relationships. Work with other agents effectively.
  • Systems! Mechanize the redundant stuff, and give personal attention to what you’re best at. Notifications, documentation, and customization. Keep it clean!
  • Focus on your net, not your gross. Gross is what you earned before you subtract your expenses. How much money is left after you remove everything you spent to get there?
  • You get what you pay for. Sometimes the more expensive software or marketing campaign actually earns you more profit than the cheaper alternative.


One thing all of these realtors could agree on; profitability isn’t just money. Being profitable means different things to different people, so it’s up to you to decide what you’re hustling for. Profitability can be more time, more enjoyment, more expression of who you are. Some agents are on vacation more than they work; they work so they can work less.

Other agents work more so that they can give more; donating to their community or causes important to them. And some agents just simply can’t get enough money! Those are the things they are working for. So when they can book that dream vacation, donate money to a charity or double their savings account that’s what being profitable gave to them.

If you haven’t noticed already, virtual assistants actually fit into a lot of these pro-tips. So if you want to know how a virtual assistant can help you achieve something you’ve read here, hit this link to schedule a one-on-one consultation. You can tell us how you want to be more profitable and we’ll evaluate if and how we can help you achieve that.

CEO/Co-Founder of MyOutDesk. In 13 years+, we have served over 6,000 clients with the highest-quality, top-rated virtual assistants.