A real estate agent is always in a rush. Sure, they sell just a few major properties and earn a huge commission, but this doesn’t mean that they don’t work 24/7. Before a sale, you have to handle the listings, organize tours, negotiate, manage all the inspectors and appraisers, etc. In other words, you have a lot of work on your plate, and you need some help.

Now, real estate agents have always had assistants. This hasn’t changed. The difference is that in 2024, some of these assistants will be remote workers. With that in mind, here’s how these virtual assistants compare to traditional administrative support employees.

Costs

Traditional administrative support has quite a few costs compared to virtual real estate assistants.

As full-time staff, they usually have a fixed overhead basic salary. This can be both a good thing and a bad one. Since remote virtual assistants get paid by the hour, performance, or on a commission, they might do more active work in their activity.

Then, you also have to cover expenses like health benefits, retirement benefits, and all sorts of bonuses.

If they’re in-house assistants, you must have space for them. So, to see how much “space” this assistant costs you, you can take the total amount of rent you have and split it by the number of your personnel. This way, you’ll get this extra cost in rent per single assistant. You will also have to provide them with hardware and workstations and get more office supplies.

Then, there’s the issue of training. By getting a virtual assistant, you’re guaranteed to get someone who already knows how to handle the majority of tasks you may ask of them.

These tasks are usually related to research of modern trends, data entry, and communication. They’ll also run your schedule. These things don’t deviate much depending on the industry. Still, it’s not that hard to find someone who specializes in real estate.

Remote workers are a lot simpler since the majority of them are either freelancers, independent contractors, or (if you’re outsourcing to an agency) someone else’s employees.

Remote Work

administrative support personnel couldn’t work online

While there’s technically no reason why traditional administrative support personnel couldn’t work online, this sort of defeats the purpose of it all. If you’re already hiring someone for remote work, why not pick someone whose terms of employment reflect this?

Not only that, but remote work somehow makes more sense in the real estate field. This is why hiring real estate virtual assistants is so advantageous for your business.

Just think about what the modern real estate world entails. Most of the work is about listing properties on listing sites, looking for new leads, communicating with clients via email, etc. In other words, the majority of work done in a real estate agency (and all administrative support) is done remotely.

In other words, while you still can insist that your employee comes to the office, there’s no practical reason behind it. Even if you want them to physically answer the phone (thus emulating that old-school business trend of having a secretary), there’s an easier and more efficient way to do it. With VoIP, they can have an office number and communicate with your clients this way without ever setting foot in the office. Your clients won’t be able to tell a difference.

More Flexible Contracts

Full-time employees usually work based on a standard fixed schedule and contract. A virtual assistant can have far more flexible work hours. They can work more when needed and fewer hours when not needed. They can even adjust to your workflow on a week-to-week basis.

When it comes to the payment method, you can negotiate and agree on when, how, and on what basis you’re going to pay them.

A third thing you need to take into consideration is the potential expansion. You see, you can always hire more virtual assistants. Sure, you can hire an extra traditional assistant if you need them, but you would have to provide space for them and get them a desk and some new equipment. The onboarding process lasts longer, as well.

When it comes to hiring a virtual assistant, you can post a job on a listing platform today, hire them tomorrow, and have them start working the day after tomorrow. Of course, it usually won’t be as simple (quick), but it’s much quicker than traditional.

Also, these contracts can be short-term, which means that bringing in a new team member doesn’t imply a long-term commitment on your part. Having this freedom can give you a lot more maneuvering space.

Downsides Of Hiring Remote Assistants

Downsides Of Hiring Remote Assistants

There are, however, a few downsides to hiring these remote assistants, as well.

First of all, they may not fit your company’s culture and dynamics. They’re not in the office, physically interacting with their coworkers and soaking in the corporate mission, vision, and values at their source. They’re not attending team-building exercises, which, although cheaper, means that their ties to your company will be somewhat weaker. It will be easier for them to just walk away.

Then, when someone spends so much time in your company, they learn all your processes and preferences. They develop a specific in-depth knowledge relevant to the functioning of your company. Sure, if they’ve worked within the industry, they understand more than you think. The problem is that sometimes you need that bit of extra knowledge.

At the same time, hiring a remote assistant means that you’ll have more choices. You’re not limited to a local talent pool. The downside is that they also always have other options. This means that, while it seems ideal on the surface, you don’t exactly have all the leverage.

Wrap Up

At the end of the day, you must understand one thing – there’s no difference in tasks and duties between these two types of assistants. The only difference comes in their terms of employment. Virtual assistants are more flexible, better suited for the remote nature of modern real estate work, and have the potential for more favorable payment arrangements. At the same time, they’re remotely employed, which is a strong con for some employers. Either way, the choice is yours.

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Ankita Tripathy
Ankita Tripathy loves to write about food and the Hallyu Wave in particular. During her free time, she enjoys looking at the sky or reading books while sipping a cup of hot coffee. Her favourite niches are food, music, lifestyle, travel, and Korean Pop music and drama.

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