“Don’t think about what the broker wants or what the agent wants. Look at what the agent is good at and create a synergistic team that can take things to the next level ” – Jorge Vazquez
In order for us to be efficient and be the best at what we do, we must know exactly what we are doing, why we are doing it, and how we are going to do it. We do not walk with closed eyes and just let fate take over.
Below is a lightly edited transcript of a recent live video interview by Ray Hendricks where He invited Jorge Vazquez, the Principal Broker of Graystone Real Estate to talk about being a successful real estate broker.
Ray: Welcome to Coast to Coast Real Estate. I’m your host, Ray Hendricks – and I also have here one of my favorite brokers, mentor, my friend, and he is teaching me a lot of things on how to be a better broker. To start this, let me ask you this, how long have you been in real estate?
Jorge: Thank you for having me here. Well, that’s a good question. Actually, I bought my first property when I was 21. At first, it was a little difficult, but that was more than 20 years ago.
Ray: Wow. That’s a long time ago. What made you passionate about the real estate industry?
Jorge: Well, it is a combination of things. I knew early on that I wanted to make money; it wasn’t that I was particularly into real estate. I was thinking of ways to make money as fast as I could. I knew that I wanted to be an entrepreneur ever since I was a kid.
To be honest, I was torn between doing financial advising or doing real estate. Before I started Graystone, I was a financial advisor and banker. It was there that I was first exposed to different ways of lending which really opened my eyes. I remember those conversations I had with my friends where I say “I love both!”
Ray: So how did Real Estate win?
Jorge: It was an incident connected with a property where my uncle helped me. At that time, I needed money badly because I was broke. I was a student, it was crazy because I couldn’t get approved for a loan because of my income, so I took three jobs to make things work. The moment I got approved for lending, I quit every single job, all of them at once –to pursue my dream of being an entrepreneur.
Ray: That is amazing, so when did you decide to go ahead with your own brokerage, how did the whole theme of the investment group at Graystone start?
Jorge: I noticed that the way that real estate was not presented in the same way as stocks. With the stock market, you are shown graphs, projections for 1-5 years and I thought, What If I start making similar projections with Real Estate. What if I take my learning on the financial side, and start selling real estate as an investment vehicle more than real estate itself? So that’s how the idea came about.
Ray: I love it, so what gave you the idea to combine 3 different ideas: Investments + Traditional Residential brokerage and a Commercial Brokerage? Because we know that most of the time, you’d have just one of the three.
Jorge: Well, that’s a good question. People always ask me, “how did you get the license?” actually, I only got the license like 5 yrs ago; the reason was that I am blessed to have a partner back then. My partner was doing the real estate side, and I was doing the financial side.
Then a few things happened where the financial services side and real estate side didn’t get along. Social media was new at the time, so anything that I said about real estate, the financial side didn’t like it, and vice versa.
There came a time for us to decide which way to go, it was difficult to decide to go just for real estate because I really loved helping people get ready for retirement, but I also do love real estate.
So I thought, What if I can apply the same thing (about financial side) into real estate, then I could really scale up your retirement a lot faster, that was my thinking behind it when I went into real estate.
Ray: What can you say to those real estate agents right now that have aspirations to be a real estate broker? What’s one piece of advice that you would give to them?
Jorge: I would say, be the best realtor that you can be, find your niche, and develop your brokerage around that niche. Having a Niche Brokerage is the key otherwise, you won’t be able to compete with the big guys. You’ll stay stagnant for years and not get anywhere.
Ray: That is absolutely right. The title of today’s episode is ‘The job of the broker is –‘ can you tell me from your point of view what do you think the #1 job of a broker is?
Jorge: It’s very simple, let me give you two things to remember:
- It’s not what the broker wants. It’s not even what the agent wants- it’s identifying what the agent is good at. Find what will benefit the brokerage as a group.
- When you see it, you will know how to take it to the next level. As a broker, you have to understand that your agents are your clients, and you must provide value, and you need to be available for them.
Ray: Absolutely. So before we end this, if you can leave a potential broker a one piece of advice, what would it be?
Jorge: Here’s what you need to know:
- Set up and get a business plan, make achievable and realistic goals.
- Start with baby steps, even you only get only 10% of improvement, persist, and move to that 20 then 30.
- You have to have some savings put away because you are in the service industry. You are servicing your agents. You can’t rely on sales, you can’t push them too much. You have to think of a way on how you can help them.
And lastly, at the end of the day, listen to them. Listen to what’s important to them, know what they are good at, and take that to the next level.