September 15, 2021

5 Ways to stay organized and more productive as a real estate agent

Ashley Walsh
by:
Ashley Walsh

Being a real estate agent is a demanding job that requires a multitude of skills.  In a traditional business you’d be qualified for roles in sales, customer service, finance, and administration. While servicing clients, and negotiating contracts are probably the most rewarding part of your job, personal organization can make or break your business.

In order to maximize your time and stretch your business goals to their fullest potential, you need to master time and process management.

Here are 5 ways to increase your productivity, which in turn increases your income.

Detailed Checklists

The average transaction has something like 75 tasks that need to be completed before closing. That doesn't even include the process of getting a listing active. One way to save time and ensure everything goes smoothly is to document each of your processes and turn them into checklists. Checklists don’t need to be for transactions only.  You can also create checklists for listing activities, lead outreach, price changes, and past client nurturing. Here’s a transaction checklist template to get you started.

Document Organization and Storage System

Some of the most important and time sensitive tasks are collecting signatures on the laundry list of documents required for each transaction. Beyond collecting signatures there are specific regulatory requirements for storage and handling of real estate documents.  One of the easiest ways to do this is to go digital and to eliminate all paper documents.  If you must collect the signature on paper, scan it immediately.

Once you have all documents in a secure storage location on the cloud (like google drive or dropbox) implement a filing organization system.  

  1. Create a folder for each year for easier searching
  2. Create a subfolder for every transaction using the property address
  3. Name documents clearly and consistently (Purchase Agreement - 123 Shaker Lane)
  4. After you’ve passed the data retention period for your state (many are 7 years) you can delete the folders for those years only.

Inbox filing system

Inbox management is one of the toughest organization challenges to tackle - especially when you are constantly on the go. It’s incredibly easy to open an email that requires a response and think you’ll remember to get back to it later or respond to and email only to realize days later that the recipient never answered your question. 

In order to address every email in your inbox and ensure you follow up at the right times it’s essential to find a system that works for you. The best system employs a variety of tactics including filters, folders, reminders and labels. If you want to tackle your Gmail inbox like a real estate pro - this is the article for you. 

Time boxing

While organizational systems are designed to save you time, they still require time and attention. Time boxing is a very simple and popular technique for practicing self-discipline and organizing your schedule in a way that your most important tasks come first. In a 2018 survey by Harvard Business review time boxing — migrating to-do lists into calendars — was ranked the most useful of 100 productivity hacks.

Put simply, time-boxing is setting aside a specific amount of time for doing a certain activity and sticking to it. It’s as simple as scheduling a meeting with yourself during a time where you won’t be distracted and can dedicate yourself to a task.

Software

Required documents and related tasks often exist across a patchwork of online platforms - and even paper files. This silo effect can become increasingly chaotic when working alongside other members of a team and can negatively impact your client experience. An effective Transaction Management System can help streamline your daily tasks while seamlessly keeping your clients updated every step of the way.


If you’re looking for an easy way to get real estate client communication, transaction management and document storage in one easy to use platform, I invite you to take a look at Shaker.

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