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rolodexEveryone has to start somewhere. Whether you’re new to the work force or only new to the real estate industry, your literal or metaphorical Rolodex might be a bit bare. But as a real estate professional, your success relies on who you know, and more importantly, who knows you. So gather your contacts to get a jump-start on increasing your business referrals.

First, start by assessing all of your existing personal and professional contacts, regardless of the industry. Although agents, stagers, and mortgage brokers are essential components to a referral network, you’ll want to include as many quality connections as possible; everyone—from a mail carrier, to a hairstylist, to a restaurateur—will have real estate needs at one time or another (or know someone else who does). But it’s important to have a strategy behind your networking. Make sure you’re making the right connections for the right reasons, and your business will soar.

Once you’ve established your existing network, look to expand in your local market. Either join a networking group or establish your own. Sign up with your local chamber of commerce as a registered business and attend their meetings. Also, consider going to business-related neighborhood association gatherings and your personal neighborhood meetings. It’s imperative to be an involved member of the community to make connections and encourage referrals.

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