Why a career in real estate?

Considering the rising levels of unemployment, perhaps it is time to consider a career as a Real Estate Practitioner. Here is why...

In recent years the real estate industry has transformed from a poorly regulated environment peppered with ‘fly-by-night’ operators, to a professional environment with Real Estate Practitioners who conform to prescribed guidelines, hold compulsory qualifications and meet other stringent requirements to entry.

As a long term career, the real estate industry now offers a solid return on investment and the excitement and safety of pursuing a career within an ever growing market.

In fact, if one considers the investment of cost and time required to obtain a regular formal qualification, the real estate fraternity could be a highly favourable career option.

Advantages, benefits and opportunities

The flexible working hours is a plus for most estate agents. True; estate agents must be available whenever clients require assistance and business is often conducted outside the typical nine to five, but that means that there is no boring routine.

Each Real Estate Practitioner (estate agent) basically owns a business within his Principal’s business. Within this set-up, the estate agent’s ‘business’ can be as large as he wants it to be, depending on the amount of time and focus he wants to dedicate to his career. The reward potential is of course directly proportionate to the estate agent’s investment of time, energy, funds and other resources.

Subject to the approval of the Principal, an established estate agent may employ an assistant to manage administrative tasks while the estate agent is out in the field. The estate agent can thus determine his own business structure and strategy within the framework of somebody else’s business.

Working in this multi-disciplined industry, estate agents acquire skills and practical knowledge of several related disciplines such as the legal, financial and marketing sectors. The opportunity exists to specialise in residential sales, property rentals, agricultural sales, commercial sales, rentals, property management and perhaps even in the marketing of new property developments and retirement villages.

A career in real estate is mostly about creating and maintaining long term relationships. Excellent client service will yield future rewards and any existing Real Estate Professional can attest to the power and value of a satisfied client’s word-of-mouth to his social sphere. Many clients also prefer to return to the same Real Estate Professional for real estate services years down the line when he upgrades or downgrades according to changes in his lifestyle.

With unlimited earning potential, very few people realise just how rewarding a career in the real estate industry can be. Although earning potential is directly related to the estate agents’ efforts, skills and know-how, top performing estate agents earn incomes on par with doctors, lawyers and accountants.

In fact, many successful estate agents are professionally qualified individuals who migrated from other industries to the real estate arena.

This migration is mainly attributed to the flexibility, financial reward and excitement the real estate industry offers.

Estate Agents' potential income

The following is an example of an estate agents' potential income based on a property sold for R1 500 000, commission calculated at 6% and a 50/50 commission split with the estate agent’s Principal.

Property purchase price
R1 500 000
Total commission
R90 000
Estate agents' potential income
*R45 000

(*Income tax will be deducted according to the SARS guidelines.)

Why RealNet?

By joining a RealNet franchise, the prospective estate agent enjoys the benefit of a tried and tested business model supported by a national brand that is not only well-established, but also well-reputed.

All franchised estate agencies operating under the RealNet banner have access to training of the highest standard, as well as practical coaching and mentoring.

In addition to the latest IT systems, the RealNet franchisor provides a search engine optimised website, it feeds property listings to the most prominent property portals automatically, it offers mobi-sites, electronic document libraries that host legal, marketing and advertising templates.

The RealNet franchisor provides its franchisees with up-to-date industry information and polices the group’s corporate governance and compliance. This protects franchisees and estate agents against negligence, ignorance and sometimes just forgetfulness. Furthermore, all pertinent legal documents such as Offers to Purchase are promptly updated to comply with industry and legislative requirements.

How to become a Real Estate Practitioner


You will need a reliable car, a mobile phone and a bit of cash to sustain yourself for at least six months.


You will have to serve as an “intern estate agent” at an established real estate agency for 12 months while completing the Further Education and Training (FET) Level 4 Real Estate Certificate, followed by the Professional Designation Examination (PDE) Level 4.


Once you have completed steps 1 and 2 above, you may apply for a full status Fidelity Fund Certificate from the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB), where after you may work independently as an estate agent, without the supervision of a Principal.


To become a Principal Real Estate Practitioner, qualified estate agents must complete the National Certificate in Real Estate (Level 5) and the PDE Level 5.

Certain exemptions exist for experienced estate agents who have been in the industry for an uninterrupted period of time, while other exemptions exist for estate agents over the age of 60 years.

Franchisees often share their knowledge and practical know-how with estate agents, creating a platform for cross-pollination of ideas. The real estate fraternity is a very competitive environment where the best-of-breed enjoy benchmarking and friendly rivalry.

Electronic brochure

Why a career in real estate is a good choice

The real estate industry requires higher levels of professionalism