Congratulations! You’ve just gotten some deals under contract, and you have a lot to look forward to, such as hour of paperwork, setting appointments, coordinating with attorneys, lenders, inspectors… and… best of all, you’ll have no more deals lined up when you’re done.
Sorry… I guess it’s hard to convey sarcasm in a blog.
If this is a situation you find yourself in too often – buried in busy work when you should be attracting new clients – maybe it’s time to think about hiring a transaction coordinator. There’s a lot to consider before you do, and that’s why I’m walking you through the process in today’s blog!
Before I go into what to look for in a TC or where to find them, let’s start with what a TC does…
The Miracle of the TC
I’m glad you’re busy, but ask yourself, “Am I busy working or am I swamped with ‘busy work’?” If what you’re doing isn’t bringing in the clients and scaling your business, then it’s something you should be paying someone else to do.
Once you get a client under contract, the TC takes the ball and carries that transaction all the way to close. That means they’re responsible for:
- Scheduling inspections
- Coordinating with the closing attorney
- Coordinating with the lender
- Handling all the paperwork
- Taking care of the client, answering all their questions, and making this a pleasant experience during a typically stressful time
So, your TC is more than just a paperwork processor – they’re vital to the image of your brand. With that said, let’s ask…
What Should I Look for in a TC?
Last week I talked about the traits to look for in every person you hire, so we’ll start there. After that, there are four main things to add to the list:
- Customer service oriented
- Knowledgeable about real estate
- Proactive rather than reactive
Customer Service Oriented
Remember, this isn’t just a paperwork gig. It’s a client-facing role. You need someone with excellent communication skills who will ultimately be representing your brand during a portion of the home buying process.
Is this person pleasant to talk to? Would you be comfortable with having them speak for you in your absence? A TC can make or break your online reviews and ability to earn referrals.
Real Estate Knowledge
Now, a TC doesn’t need to have a real estate license or be an expert on the local market, but as the title implies, they need to understand every step of the process.
Even if they haven’t been in real estate before, prior administrative experience is essential because they’ll be comfortable enough with systems to focus on familiarizing themselves with your world.
With this position in particular, it would absolutely be worth paying extra for someone who has worked in the industry before.
Proactive Rather than Reactive
You already have the deal in your hand, but don’t forget it could still slip through your fingers. Your TC should be the one comfortable reaching out to people first, checking in on clients before they have a problem, and handling small mistakes before they become big ones.
Also, they need to be honest with you about their workload and comfortable saying when they are overwhelmed. Your TC should be able to cut you off from giving them more clients if they feel like it could compromise all their others.
This is a hybrid job – half client care and half administrative. If you were to hire a salesperson for this role, they’d excel at one half and might make some crucial mistakes on the paperwork.
Virtual vs. In-Person
Virtual TCs are a big trend right now, and they certainly aren’t a bad option, but there are several pros and cons to consider.
Pros of a Virtual TC
- Less expensive
- Likely has more experience in real estate
- Easier to replace or find a temporary fill-in if something goes wrong
- May be willing to work part-time – if you don’t need a full-time TC
Cons of a Virtual TC
- May not look as good for your brand, as in-person meetings are important to long-term client relationships
- May compromise the quality and thoroughness of their work
- May be living in a different time zone and have limited hours
- You’ll be less able to integrate them into all aspects of the team
Ultimately though, the best option is the one that fits your situation.
Where to Find a TC
Now that you have your checklist, where are you going to find this magical person?
If you’re looking for a Virtual TC, it’s as easy as going to Google, where you’ll find plenty of lists featuring reputable services like CloseConcierge Transactly and MyOutDesk, but you could also put ads out on LinkedIn and Indeed.
If you want to go the in-person route, run those same online ads, but also try reaching out to other agents in your area – this is probably the best course to go, anyway. Even if they’re your primary competition, they’d be happy to help you out with this – at least, if they’re in the Tom Ferry ecosystem they would.
Get in touch with local recruiting companies, and always make sure you’re able to interview candidates first.
Questions to Ask
Finally, we’re here at the interview. What kinds of questions are you going to ask? I’d start with:
- What prior work in real estate do you have?
- Do you know how many clients can you handle at a time?
- How many closings can you do in a month?
- When you get overwhelmed, will you ask to stop taking on clients or continue to take on more?
- Will you be able to work outside your normal hours if something comes up?
- Have you ever used the systems these systems that we do? If not, are you willing to learn? (And ask yourself, do you have time to teach them?)
Onward to Your HABU!
I hoped that this has helped, and I hope that you find the right TC who is going to help you even more.
Now, I know I gave you a ton of criteria to look for, but we need to keep in mind that there are no unicorns out there. Sometimes the right person isn’t always the perfect person (you can go ahead and steal that line and apply it to anything in life). If you’re drowning in administrative work and can’t seem to find your dream TC, it’s worth hiring someone who is at least capable and ready and willing to learn.
Best of luck in your search!