There’s good news for real estate professionals: income is on the rise. According to the 2022 – 2023 Real Estate Agent Income Guide from Real Estate Express, a brand within the Colibri Group’s Real Estate family of brands, 75% of agents and nearly three-quarters of brokers (74%) increased their earnings in 2019 – 2020.
The Real Estate Express study unpacks not only individual earnings, but also what’s behind those earnings. Colibri Group’s President of Real Estate, Jennifer Hoff, suggests that the proprietary report is an invaluable resource for anyone looking to earn more money and gain a better understanding of their own profession.
“The Income Guide is unique and shows the linkage between development and income,” says Hoff. “This was our fourth year; we had 8,914 licensed respondents, and the relevance captured the changes that occurred during COVID, how the profession changed and how they made those adjustments. We wanted to publish results that were thoughtful toward the new way of working. It shows that you can be successful professionals by emulating what top producers do.”
Although Hoff describes the pandemic as having a chaotic impact on the macroeconomy, she suggests that wasn’t the case for real estate. In fact, the Income Guide study found that not only are agents and brokers earning more than ever before, nine out of 10 say they are happy with their profession, a figure that is 38 basis points higher than other industries.
Hoff says that happiness is in part due to income, and Colibri Real Estate is confident that its educational resources can help professionals increase that annual figure, regardless of experience level.
Learn More, Earn More
Arguably the most important finding within the study should grab the attention of every agent and broker. The Income Guide found that real estate professionals who invest in professional development opportunities annually earn more than $72,000 more than those who don’t.
Professional development can be achieved through online education, livestreamed classes and in-person learning in locations across the U.S. These developmental options are offered through Colibri Real Estate’s education-branded portfolio. It’s a portfolio that never stops evolving to meet the demands of its clients.
“We really try to bring learning to life,” Hoff says. “And that’s qualifying education through our three delivery methods because we know real estate agents especially like flexibility. It’s very unusual to have one provider that can take you through your entire career. It’s comprehensive for the entrepreneurial journey.”
Given the empirical evidence that clearly concludes that professional development is imperative, Colibri Real Estate offers clients not only the ability to order a la carte classes on several topics, but also a robust membership package that covers everything from compliance training to resources that help agents and brokers hone their professional skills.
“Having a membership gives you access to so many things: professional development, coaching, webcasts and webinars, etc.,” Hoff says. “The Colibri Real Estate family of brands offers individuals a lot of opportunities to seek professional development. We know this is particularly important to real estate agents as the industry changes or as new modalities of working with customers change. We cover the whole gamut.”
Specialized education is particularly important for professionals who are eager to increase their earnings. The study points to a few segments where agents and brokers might want to consider spending more time.
“We found that eco-friendly properties are the most lucrative specialization,” Hoff says. “They earn around $200,000 more than those who do not have any specialty or niche, followed by foreign investment and luxury properties . As specializations change in the field, we want to follow the trends.”
Hoff also stresses that many agents are already playing in the luxury market but don’t necessarily realize it, which is why Colibri Real Estate’s Institute of Luxury Home Marketing could enhance their knowledge of the space, earn them the designation of luxury—and thus, allow them to significantly increase their earning potential.
Staying a Step Ahead
If the COVID-19 pandemic taught us anything, it’s that you should be prepared for everything. Colibri Real Estate leans into this philosophy by continuously staying on top of emerging trends that impact real estate professionals and integrating them into their suite of educational offerings.
“As an educator, we’re always thinking about what we can offer of value,” Hoff says. “The currency and relevance of our information enriches our clients’ professional lives. And that’s what our customers tell us the most.”
To ensure Colibri Real Estate is covering all the bases, and maintaining its value proposition, it relies on the community to help guide the curriculum.
“Our mantra is to create raving fans, and that’s embedded with our culture,” Hoff says. “With every class we offer, we collect net promoter scores. We also get feedback from students and instructors. And we work closely with brokers and agents on what topics and courses we should offer to update our content library. Every year we publish new courses based on what’s up and coming in the industry.”
When Hoff says that Colibri’s goal is to “create raving fans,” it speaks directly to the company’s core set of values, and how they relate to its family of brands. The parent company, headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, was launched in 1990, and has an educated alumni of more than 5 million professionals in real estate, appraisal, financial services and healthcare—and it prides itself on its mission.
“We have a value system that we hold very highly in terms of how we work as an organization,” Hoff says. “Those values translate to delivering more than we promise to our customers and to move our customers to a better place in their careers. We believe that combination is critically important, and it centers everyone in our company on doing the right thing.”
Together, the mission and value set inspired the company to coalesce its family of real estate brands into one master brand: Colibri Real Estate. Hoff suggests that the company’s objectives have not changed but are now perhaps more clearly articulated as it looks toward serving its clients in the future.
“Though our brands are important underneath it, the concept is that they are working together in concert to deliver to our customers,” she says. “We have a unified approach in how we’re delivering to our customers across the country.”