Steve Matley, RE & Construction Expert/Educator/Speaker (Building Solid Foundations)

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Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

If new at it, find a willing mentor to lead you. Otherwise, take the lead of a top producer in the office you are working at and ask if you may 'shadow' them for a couple of weeks to 'learn the ropes'. Do not spend your money on leads; rather get out in public, hold other agents' listings open to generate contacts and get new listing referrals. I repeat; do not spend a dime without checking with a seasoned agnet n your office to make sure you are not buying empty promises.

Aug 17, 2016 08:14 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI NMLS#1483386 gave you the best of advice.  One of his big advantages is that no doubt, he will on time and organized.  One of our clients was an ex marine.  It was such a pleasure to work with him.  We could count on him for delivery of items for his website, return of documents we needed.  It was a delight to work with him.  


Aug 17, 2016 08:17 AM
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate Agent Retired

I think it's a rough profession with the pay not being steady. It's not for the faint of heart but neither is Afghanistan.

Aug 17, 2016 10:04 PM
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management

Military life is very structured; it might be difficult for someone used to that kind of environment to do real estate, which requires a lot of self initiative with little or no guidance.

Aug 17, 2016 12:31 PM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

We get a lot of that here. I have them "intern" or assist me and see the REAL story. Most do not last my 90 day probation; never what they think it'll be. The longest I had a military guy was 1 year and he swore he'd become a Realtor...he left me for Green Peace! By the way, I'm a nice boss/leader; it was real estate not me they bailed on.

Aug 17, 2016 09:41 AM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Steve Matley One of the major reasons for failure in this business is under capitalization. I don't know if a newly discharged military person would have the resourcs to carry them through until they started making a viable income. Unless the spouse has a good job, I would recommend coming into this business on a part time basis.

Aug 17, 2016 09:20 AM
Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

I am a Veteran.   There is such a culture shock just getting back into civilian life.

  I would suggest being an assistant, or an office staff member, before becoming a sole proprietor or independent contractor.

Aug 18, 2016 04:59 AM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate

You have some great comments here.  Once they are up and running I would also suggest that military be a niche market ... much like Jerry Newman 

Aug 18, 2016 12:55 AM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

My company (PenFed Realty) sponsors those with military connections to help them get into real estate. This takes the burden of the front end expense away so those ready to work hard and make a commitment to focus on the business of starting a business.

Aug 17, 2016 10:23 AM
Kathleen Luiten
Resort and Second-Home Specialist - Princeville, HI
Kauai Luxury Ocean Home Sales

No different than any new agent (get a great mentor, have enough cash to live at least 6-9 months without drawing on any commission income, etc.). But I would add that Vets can use their background as a special appeal to military families including their extended families and close friends. Many Americans want to support our returning Vets and happily bring them business.

Aug 17, 2016 09:20 AM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Real Estate will not provide the stimulus necessary to challenge and reward a transition-or. Something more in line with their training, experience or skills banks. Restaurant business is a good place to investigate while figuring things out, you eat for free and earn a buck too. That's all I know

Aug 17, 2016 09:10 AM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

I reached out to a group here in Washington DC because I wanted to hire a vet as an administrative assistant - no one responded.  My father, grandfather, an uncle and a cousin were career military - I would love to hire a veteran - and I would love to help a vet transition into real estate - how do I find someone(s) to help in the DC metro area? 

Aug 18, 2016 10:58 AM
Shirley Coomer
Keller Williams Realty Sonoran Living - Phoenix, AZ
Realtor, Keller Williams Realty, Phoenix Az

The military teaches structure and accountability.  Someone coming from the military understands both.  A schedule, daily lead generation, honesty and follow-up should come naturally.  I would suggest marketing to veterans.  If they are in a community with close military bases, there may be many active duty that would prefer to work with another veteran.   Then there is the obvious part of training, ability to service  a few months before commissions come in, etc.  

Aug 18, 2016 12:30 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

You have already received some excellent advice here.  Good luck to those who have served our country in whatever career they choose.  

Aug 17, 2016 10:40 PM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

The same as any other person getting into real estate:

Have a business plan

Manage your time

Prospect every day

Aug 17, 2016 10:17 PM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI NMLS#1483386 nailed this one!

Aug 17, 2016 09:56 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

The same advice you give any other person thinking of entering this profession.  The only difference, I would definitely volunteer to be their mentor!  Former military make outstanding employees and business owners!!

Aug 17, 2016 02:01 PM
Jennifer Mackay
Counts Real Estate Group, Inc. - Panama City, FL
Your Bay County Florida Realtor 850.774.6582

I'd agree with those who say "same as any other agent".

Money to live on, get a mentor, do open houses etc....

Aug 17, 2016 09:35 AM
Cody Carmen
Adhi Schools, LLC - Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Market Analysis--Educational Content, Adhi Schools

I see you're in California, where the state is currently taking a couple of months to process the application to even take the exam. They have to pass the state exam before they can do anything else, so tell them to pick a school that will actually prepare them and to make a wise choice as far as online or live programs. Different programs work better for different people. 

Full disclaimer: I work for a real estate school that is active in Southern California, so I don't want to go much further and pitch our services here. But if you have any questions about the school choice process and what veterans should expect (they can find a discount a lot of places), feel free to message me and I would be happy to help! 

Aug 17, 2016 08:19 AM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, EXP - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Give Jerry Newman a call.

Sep 11, 2017 08:36 PM
Jim Joeriman
Coldwell Banker Riviera Realty, Inc - Lacey Township, NJ
Helping Agents Reach New Heights

I am one who indeed did go into real estate after military service.  Most vets have a strong work ethic.  They should seek help in doing a good business situation analysis, develop a plan and then work hard on the plan and they will succeeed.  Sounds a alot like advise I would give any new agent.

Aug 23, 2016 09:53 PM
Tony Lewis
Summit Real Estate Group - Valencia, CA
Summit Real Estate Santa Clarita & Aliso Viejo

"you have already been through hell, find another profession"

Aug 20, 2016 01:05 PM
Debra B Albert, PA - Keyes Realty
Keyes Realty Treasure Coast, 34986 - Port St Lucie, FL
Ron and Debbie 772.708.3292

We recommend a real estate career to military.  I like to point out that after getting a va loan, you are more qualified to explain the ins and outs to other people who are leaving the service and relocating.

Aug 19, 2016 10:14 PM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

The others have given good answers.

Aug 19, 2016 07:47 AM
Christopher Albanese, GRI
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate - Orlando, FL
Broker Associate, Trainer & Real Estate Instructor

Transitioning into civilial life is a huge change for our veterans.  However, they are going to experience a similar culture shock whether they enter Real Estate or go to a more common form of employment.  The real question here is how can they be successful in Real Estate.  


Real Estate should be organized and scheduled just like the military.  The problem for most that enter the business (non-vets included)  is they don't want to do what it takes to get their business off the ground.  They just want to show up and get lucky, have a lead handed to them and get paid like a typical 9-5.  This is where the stress and disappointment comes from.


If you can follow orders you will be successful.  Your mentor/broker/trainer, should be giving you the orders for a successful mission.  They may say, you need to call 40 expired listings each week, preview 10 homes each day, knock on 30 doors each week and hold 2 open houses each month. If you can follow the order you will be successful.  


Vets should also reach out for support from other local vets and this support system then becomes a way to grow their personal Sphere of Influence.   If I'm a recent vet and I'm looking to buy or sell, why wouldn't I want to work with another local Vet?  Most Americans respect and appreciate the service of our military members.  With that, the veteran will walk in the door of a listing appointment having already earned the respect of the Seller, this is a powerful starting point.  

Aug 19, 2016 04:28 AM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

Having worked with several people in the corporate world who were ex-military, there is a huge culture difference between the two.  What you can say, how you can act and people don't jump when you snap your fingers.  Orders get questioned and the chain of command isn't as "cut and dry" as it was in the military.

Aug 19, 2016 02:54 AM
Carolyn Clark
Keller Williams - Riverside, CA
Inland Southern California Real Estate Services

I would direct the candidates to Keller Williams Realty,  the #1 ranked training organization in the world! The training, coaching, support, and friendly atmosphere is unsurpassed! Please feel free to contact me should you have any questions or if I can help in any way.   


Aug 19, 2016 01:52 AM
Laura Filip
Laura Filip Broker , Opening doors for All Seasons of Life - Whitesboro, TX
What can we do for you today?

I say go for it. Find an Broker that understands military life, and learn . Retired military means in most cases you have  funds coming in and can afford a break in funds coming in. Well that is if you are retired military. If not then you need a nest egg put back to make it to the first sale. Either way find a broker who has military in thier back ground. Semper FI have a blessed day. 

Aug 19, 2016 01:17 AM
Carla Freund
Keller Williams Preferred Realty - Raleigh, NC
Carolina Life RealEstate & Relocation 919-602-8489

The same advice I would give to all new agents, prepare to work hard, find a wonderful mentor and find a great training program!

Aug 18, 2016 12:54 AM
Harry F. D'Elia III
RentVest - Phoenix, AZ
Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR

He will need to know that it is his business. He would need to join an active team to learn the business.

Aug 17, 2016 11:36 PM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Find a mentor and study for a license.

Aug 17, 2016 10:20 PM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Steve Matley - Welcome to Real Estate. Start working by referrals - begin with other military personnel.

Aug 17, 2016 02:55 PM
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
Fathom Realty Washington LLC - Tacoma, WA
South Puget Sound Washington Agent/Broker!

 Build a huge shere of influence with people that are still in and make sure the Housing Authority is your friend at the base nearby ....

Aug 17, 2016 02:41 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

I would advise them like any other person...Let them know the odds of aking a sale and how soon and how much of a bankrole they need to get started and keep the household going until the first sale.

Aug 17, 2016 01:25 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

First he will have to pass his state's test. It might also be a great idea for him to talk with several agents to find out more about the industry. It's not for everyone. It's a lot of hardwork and time, but it is also very rewarding. 

Aug 17, 2016 01:22 PM
Toronto, ON

The same type of advice provided to anyone changing careers.

Aug 17, 2016 12:49 PM
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Many of my favorite colleagues have been former military, and they are terrific agents.  It might be good to start off getting licensed and working as a salaried assistant while learning the ropes.  

Aug 17, 2016 11:34 AM
Sybil Campbell
Fernandina Beach, FL
Referral Agent Amelia Island Florida

I say go for it, but make sure to get in a company that has a mentoring program.  The military discipline should help tremendously!

Aug 17, 2016 10:50 AM
Marie Waite
Finest Women in Real Estate - Murrieta, CA

First, make sure he has enough money to support the initial expenses required in this business.  We are also talking about the marketing expenses to promote the business.  

Second, is to join a company that has great reputation on training new agents.  This company should have enough leads to connect him to start with.  It would be smart to team up with experienced agents who have good business ethics.

Lastly, find someone who can help him with Personal Branding.  If people do not know him, then he will always be chasing for business.  

Aug 17, 2016 10:47 AM
Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD
Cornerstone Business Group Inc - Winchester, VA
Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro

Steve, I have sailor who is tapping out next month. He is joining our company in September. My best advice is to use the discipline learned in the military to become a proactive superstar in the realty office. He is already making preparations for his new role. I'll make sure he gets all the training I can give him, but my next advice would be to continue to learning, and since he is new, I would encourage him to run things by me before committing to a program that he isn't ready for, or to one that really doesn't produce results. There will be much to learn, but a solid commitment to achieve will be his ace in the hole. His military career has already proven he knows about commitment. 

Aug 17, 2016 10:30 AM
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

Veteran loan, work at base?

Aug 17, 2016 09:35 AM
Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

Have at least six months of money to live on in the beginning.

Aug 17, 2016 09:21 AM