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How to Start a Real Estate Transaction Coordinator Business

The list of documents and tasks required to complete a real estate transaction continues to grow. In response, the services of a real estate transaction coordinator—or “TC,” for short—are increasingly the key to successful and on-time closings.

That growing reliance on experienced coordinators has helped many real estate professionals start their own coordination company. In this guide, you’ll learn how to start a real estate transaction coordinator business of your own in just eight simple steps.

1. Choose a Business Name

Choosing the name of your transaction coordinator business will likely require some thought, but it’s often one of the more straightforward steps in the process. Do some research and brainstorming to pick a name that’s simple, professional, and reflects your business values.

It’s also important to consider a name that has keyword value for future search intent. In other words, choose a name that’s aligned with the real estate industry and your TC business service offering. Finding a name with keyword value will help ensure that your business name is aligned with online search intent and discoverability.

TC Pro Tip: After you’ve selected a name, purchase a website domain that’s an exact match—or as close of a match as possible. It may be difficult to buy a .com domain name with your actual business name. Look into other top-level domains such as .realestate or .realty. 

2. Set Up Your Legal Business Entity

Next, you’ll need to set up your business. One of the most important things you need to decide when starting up a real estate transaction coordination company is the type of business structure you want to use.

Setting up your business as an LLC or Sole Proprietor means very different things when it comes to business management, taxation, and liability. This step is incredibly important, and it’s necessary to conduct proper research and due diligence before deciding on a business structure and filing the required legal paperwork.

TC Pro Tip: The Small Business Administration has some valuable resources here. It’s also advisable to consult a business formation or incorporation lawyer. 

3. Acquire the Right License

Real estate practice is governed by legislation at the federal, state, and city levels. Given the complexity of real estate law and practice, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with the requirements and regulations mandated by your state. Brokers can face penalties for real estate non-compliance, so it’s essential you understand real estate compliance standards in your jurisdiction.

The license you need to operate as a TC depends on the state where you live and work. If you plan on providing services to different clients across different states, you will need to apply multiple standards at the same time because each state has specific licensing rules.

For example, it’s illegal in Texas for you to work as a transaction coordinator without a license. Research the laws that impact real estate transaction coordinators in your state to ensure that your business is properly licensed.

4. Learn the Basics of Real Estate Transaction Coordination

There are various skills you need to become a successful transaction coordinator. Even if you’re an experienced TC or real estate professional, spend time learning the basics beyond what you know, so that you can better serve your clients.

Here are just some of the basics that you’ll need to develop a complete understanding of:

  • The right real estate terminology for communicating with real estate agents, brokers, appropriate vendors, and other professionals.
  • The real estate transaction process from start to finish. The exact process will differ from one area to another and will depend on more than a dozen factors such as financing, property type, property condition, and representation.
  • How to market your services properly to recruit real estate agents and brokerages to coordinate on behalf of.
  • The right communication methods when dealing with agents, brokers, buyers, and sellers. You can communicate via email but, for urgent queries, pick up the phone.

5. Choose the Right Transaction Coordinator Software

Next, you will need to find the software for your transaction coordinating business. As a real estate transaction coordinator, you will manage many of the administrative tasks associated with real estate transactions. Common tasks include:

  • Managing listings and contracts
  • Coordinating open houses
  • Handling titles and escrow
  • Expediting mortgage loan and appraisal processes
  • Organizing inspections
  • Assisting in negotiations
  • Following up on the completion of repairs
  • Communicating with agents, brokers, buyers, and sellers throughout the real estate transaction process

What makes this more difficult is that you’re often required to manage those tasks in more than one system. Many brokerages, even in the same area, utilize several real estate transaction management software products, if any, at all.

To start and grow your company, you’ll likely need to choose transaction coordinator software that works alongside any system that a broker and their agents use. If not, you may end up paying for features that you don’t need and that over-complicate your process.

Often, you will need to create unique workflows for every agent and brokerage you work with. This allows you to work seamlessly with any tools used by agents. It also allows you to automate transaction coordinator checklists for listings, acceptance, loan approval, option period, and appraisal dates in one system.

You can also keep clients up-to-date, see which transactions have missing documents, and send cover letters with transaction milestones.

6. Set Your Rates

Typically, real estate transaction coordinators charge a fee for each closed transaction. The fee is often variable and can depend on several factors, such as:

  • The type of clients you work with
  • Experience
  • Location
  • Level of service

It can be challenging to set rates, especially if you’re just starting as a transaction coordinator and new business owner. Search online for what the competition charges. If you can’t find local transaction coordination companies to compare, consider looking at other states. Many TCs work with agents across multiple states, and these may still be direct competitors of yours.

You will also need to decide how you are going to charge clients. Most transaction coordinators invoice clients on project completion or, on longer-term or rolling contracts, at the end of the month. Some transaction coordinators, however, ask clients to pay up-front. 

7. Start Marketing Your New Company

Once you’re set up and ready to begin coordinating real estate transactions, you’ll need to start marketing and recruiting. This part of the process can feel time-consuming and expensive, so it’s often essential to find creative ways to spread the word and acquire clients.

Consider the following tips:

TC Pro Tip: Offer to coordinate the first deal for free for potential clients. This is a great way to generate leads, and once the deal closes, it’s an easy way to secure a paying customer for every new transaction. 

8. Ask for Testimonials and Referrals

Testimonials are an excellent way for you to secure more work in the future and provide you with some much-needed credibility when you’re starting. Never be afraid to ask for testimonials from your first few clients. If you did a good job, ask a broker or agent to write a quick review about the service you provided. You can then place these testimonials on your website or social channels. 

Referrals are just as necessary. Fortunately, referral marketing is long-established in real estate and no stranger to the clients you’ll work with. Test out referral incentive opportunities such as discounts, free coordination, and other perks for those who refer new clients to you.

Final Word

Are you looking to become a real estate transaction coordinator? Follow the steps on this list, and you could be making money in no time at all. This role is great if you crave some flexibility and want to work from home and become your own boss. Following the tips above, however, will maximize your chances of success. For even better results, automate your day-to-day tasks with transaction coordinator software like Paperless Pipeline.