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A good number of commercial brokers also work as independent contractors. For the most part, commercial brokers set their own schedules and take on only the business that they want.
While this offers tremendous flexibility, managing your own time can be a pitfall for the wrong candidate. There is a tremendous amount of self-discipline required to be your own boss.
Just because no one tells you when to be at work or how many hours to be there doesn't mean that you don't have to do anything. Remember, you are likely not pulling down a salary. Simply filling your seat will not pay the bills. Most commercial brokers are in a position where they must find the discipline to uncover leads, work them, create relationships with investment-banking firms and maintain stellar customer service for clients.
These added responsibilities can be stressful. Commercial lending is a 24-7 job that includes demanding clients who expect you to be available to them all the time, at any time. It can affect your home life, with frequent interruptions outside of regular working hours. Financial dealings also are emotional, particularly for the borrower, which often adds to brokers' stress.
To succeed in this business, you have to have a thick skin. You must enjoy the work enough to offer additional help to clients who become upset with you.
Although it's tempting to play tough, realize your clients ultimately are paying your bills. It would be wise to treat them well and to work hard for them.
The plus side
It's always wise to balance the challenges facing commercial brokers with the positive aspects of the job.
The biggest upside of commercial lending is in the financial rewards that a good broker can generate. The commercial lending industry is not like the residential side, with its pronounced dips and peaks. Even as the housing market slipped, commercial lending continued in relative stability --meaning that the vine is still ripe for the picking with deals that need funding. Brokers who have the right business acumen, the right contacts and solid investment-banking partners can create a significant revenue stream.
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