What does your real estate office say about you?
Whether you are a Realtor, real estate investor, startup business owner, or own a chain of mortgage branches, you have some type of office. That might be a whole floor or office building, or even just a seat on the sofa. Whatever your set up is, it is what potential clients, business partners, recruits, and even investors will consider to be your office. Whether it is your garage, a background wall for Google Hangouts, an executive suite, retail setting, or hole in the wall, your office design will certainly play a role in who you attract, what their expectations are, and how easy they close. This doesn’t mean you have to go broke trying to show off, but it is critical to know what it says about your business.
1. Location: Your address says a ton about your real estate business. If you look up a business with a Beverly Hills or Rodeo Dr. address, the company is likely to deal in luxury homes. What does yours say about you? Beverly Hills may not be the right branding for every real estate brand of professional, but it is important to know the perception it gives those you want to work with. This gets even more important the further away your prospects are. For example; a San Francisco address may immediately say “trendy, tech-savvy,” but a Walnut Creek, CA address might sound like backwoods mobile home country to anyone out of the vicinity. No one outside of your circle might know it is a well-respected enclave where you can expect to pay over $8 million for a tiny townhouse.
2. What you are reading: They say that you can instantly sum up a person, and where they are headed, by what they are reading. So what’s on your shelves and coffee table? What does it say about you? Is it 101 sales words, and how to squeeze every penny out of a client? Or will your reading list say you are a successful, and ethical thought leader?
3. Colors: Colors have been boiled down to a science for decades, or maybe longer. Forget what you think is pretty. If you are in it to build a profitable real estate business, leverage the data. If the smart colors don’t match your brand or website, maybe you need to dial back even further before you start decorating your office space.
4. Future or fossil: Does your real estate office design say that you are going to carry them into a great future? Or are you going to try and suck them back into ancient history? Office design has changed dramatically over the last decade. Don’t be a dinosaur. Be sure to incorporate the latest technology into your business, and you will see the advantages it provides. On the other hand, neglecting to keep up with trends can certainly hurt your business. Do yourself a favor and adopt the latest technology. There is a reason it was invented.
5. Money: Does your real estate office breathe money? Does is suggest doing business with you is attractive, and that aligning with your success will bring more money and a better lifestyle? Or does it say you don’t have two pennies, and you really need some of theirs? However, don’t ignore the lines between being frugal versus wasteful. Sometimes you should invest a little more in your office space. But don’t let that sabotage the authenticity of your brand either. If you talk endlessly about giving back and charity, but have outrageous gold and diamond encrusted sculptures all over the place, something is probably out of place.
6. Trends: Are you up to date on the latest trends? Ignoring fads is okay, but remember that the choice to do business with you is a direct reflection of each individual’s personality. Do they want to be associated with what your office portrays? If it was a t-shirt, would they wear it? Or re-gift it next Christmas? Stay true to your business, but not at the cost of losing clients. Make sure you are following up on the latest trends that have staying power.
7. How much you care: Is your office organized? Is there an attention to detail, and care put into it? This will say a lot about the properties, product, or service you are offering? Looking busy is one thing. Showing no care for detail or organization can be scary to those you are asking to trust you with the biggest investment of their lifetimes.
Whether launching a real estate startup out of your garage, or constructing a gigantic mother ship to operate your intergalactic real estate empire from, your real estate office not only says a lot about you and your brand, but can be directly linked to your success. What will your office do for your goals, or not?