Housing Watch: Large increase in real estate career interest during pandemic

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- With just 569 home listings available in Fresno County, the housing market remained incredibly competitive for buyers, sellers and realtors.

Guarantee Real Estate recruiter Reginia Teter recalled many people interested in becoming an agent started reaching out during the pandemic.

Teter said, "It was like a catalyst to get them off high center. This is something I've thought about for quite some time. I'm out of work now. I want to work for myself."

It is a 4-6 month process to pay for licensing classes and then pass an exam before you can become an agent.

But you'll also have to shell out hundreds of dollars in annual costs for association, brokerage and multiple listing service fees.

The industry could always use more people - if they're up for a challenge in a crowded field.

Teter said, It's more a matter of persistence and determination in those agents because we're seeing properties where we're seeing multiple offers and they're having to work really hard for their clients."

Last year, people couldn't take state exams because testing centers were closed due to COVID.

They have re-opened, so new agents are being hired again.

Teter said, "I always figure if I can't talk you out of it, you're probably a good candidate in real estate."

Scott Reba of Prosperity Home Mortgage explained how all workers connected to the industry have been swamped because of the housing boom.

Reba said, "It's not just the realtor and the lender. There are title officers and escrow officers, appraisers, home inspectors, pest inspectors, the general contractors that come to work."

Additional workers were certainly needed in many of these areas, but Reba said some businesses may be reluctant to take on a large number of new employees.

He added, "You wish you could have more help but most of these ancillary industries understand that these cycles come and go. Yeah, you can build, hire a bunch of people today but in a year or six months, the volume may drop."

Employers would rather not have to let people go after training them.

Reba said recruiting played a big part of the industry and you can build a career in any of the areas we mentioned.

But it required patience and persistence.
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