In this blog I am going to cover how I prepared my business as a Realtor for becoming a new mom during my pregnancy, how I worked during delivery, showing property while breastfeeding and how I am a stay at home mom as well as a full time Realtor.
FYI: I have been a Realtor since 2015. I can't imagine being a new mom and a new Realtor at the same time as it's a very expensive process for both. Also, I have a lot of help and support from both Grandma's and Husband!
Preparing my business during my pregnancy for when the baby came
My Husband and I planned our delivery around our busy season. Both of our busy seasons are during Summer and Fall which we had our son at the end of Fall so we definitely lost out on some income but it didn't hurt us too bad.
Building a Home Office
The first thing I did was build myself a home office with a desk, printer/scanner, office supplies, etc. As an independent contractor you can actually write off your home office space on your taxes from your rent or your mortgage! Ask your accountant for more info!
A few months prior to delivery I picked a Realtor I liked working best with from my office and asked, if need be, if they could help me with my transactions/clients and they could either get a referral or split commission with me.
A month prior to my due date I spoke with my Broker and asked if I could stop doing floor time until I was fully ready (5 months). This was my decision and I probably could have come back sooner but I was okay with missing those floor days for a few months. I would strongly suggest not being on floor for the first month after delivery while you are healing and getting used to being a momma.
I Stopped Working with Buyers
Since homebuyer's take up so much more time than Seller's I transferred all Buyer's to my back-up. My back-up showed the homes and once they picked a home and were in escrow then I would take things from there and we would split the commission OR I would let my backup take care of the transaction and I would get a referral fee.
I did this two weeks prior to my due date (just in case I delivered early) up until I was fully recovered (6 weeks - 8 weeks).
Lastly, I emailed all of my clients, friends, etc. and told them my due date, that I would still be working and I gave them my back-up's information just in case they couldn't get ahold of me.
Working During Delivery
This was so funny!! I hadn't gotten a business call all week!! But the day I was in delivery and the couple of days after while I was in the hospital, I was getting calls left and right and clients coming into the office asking for me.
When I told my clients/new prospects I was delivering this actually made them SO excited and they either waited for me until I was ready or as noted above I transferred them to my packup.
Showing Homes & Breastfeeding
This was tricky and it only works if you have AWESOME clients!
List of things you will need:
Breast Pump I used the Medela Pump in Style Advanced. My Insurance provided it for free!
Pumping Bra You don't have to have this but it makes pumping a lot easier and faster and you can use your hands.
Car Plug in Since you will more than likely be pumping in your vehicle while showing property you can order one from amazon.
Bottles, tubing, lids, etc.
Cover I keep one in my truck at all times so I don't forget it.
Cooler Bag This just depends on how long you will be gone. If it's all day I suggest you have one but if you're only showing a couple of homes then you should be fine to store it in your center console until you get it to a refrigerator. Breastmilk can last up to 4-6 hours at room temperature. But get it to a refrigerator ASAP.
Below you will find ways to pump while you show property:
Make sure clients know that you are breastfeeding and that you will need to pump every 3-4 hours. If they are not okay with this then refer them to another agent and receive a referral!
Pump 30 minutes to an hour before showing property
Schedule showings around your pumping times.
Drop them off at a restaurant during lunch and pump in your vehicle. (Make sure you bring your own lunch so you can eat while pumping)
How I'm a full time Realtor
a Stay at home mom
First things first. If it wasn't for my company having Skyslope, this wouldn't be possible. Skyslope is a paperless system so that all of your transactions, listings, etc. is online. My office used to do paper files but we switched to Skyslope so literally everything is done online and I don't have to print or scan!
Working with Buyer's
You have a few options here! Obviously you won't be home while you show property and at this time you will need to schedule this to fit with a babysitter/family member. But this is easy if it's only 1-2 times a week and most people want to see homes on weekends so finding a babysitter on a weekend is super easy.
Like stated before you can refer them to another agent and receive a referral.
OR you can have someone show the homes and then you do all of the paperwork. In this case you would split the commission 50/50 or give the other Realtor a referral.
Working with Seller's
I would suggest leaving the baby home during your listing appointment. But I have had clients beg me to bring the baby so they can meet him and snuggle. Or they are disappointed that I didn't bring him. Whichever you decide to do... make sure you ask your clients if it's okay to bring him first and maybe tell them your situation.
After you have the listing, it's super easy from there since now you're just advertising and marketing your new listing.
During the escrow period when you need to run to your clients home/new home for inspections, walkthroughs, etc. make sure you ask your client if you can bring the baby. Most of them are ecstatic or okay with this. If they are not okay with you bringing the baby around, respect their needs and that's when you will need to find a babysitter.
I schedule my floor time for weekends when my husband is off and days that work with the Grandma's. I would suggest trying to get back to floor as soon as possible so you can get new leads and have a few days a month without the baby.
If you decide to bring the baby along with you to your open house, make sure it's okay with your client first. Also, make sure it's okay with your Broker since you represent your office. A lot of the time people who come to open houses want to see more houses... which then having the baby is tricky. You can tell them you have to finish your open house first and then drop the baby off and show them homes. If the homes are within walking distances of your open house then bringing the baby could be fun. Or ask them if they'd want to see homes the next day (this will give you time to find the right homes to show them).
Having an adorable baby with you at an open house will definitely be a conversation starter and it will make people remember you.
New Leads who want to see homes RIGHT NOW
This is the hardest one to figure out with a baby because you can't drop everything and go but you also don't want to lose out on the client.
If they want to see just one home. Tell them you have your baby with you and ask if it's okay to bring him.
If they want to see multiple homes... Ask them if they can wait a few hours while you find a babysitter or ask if they can wait and make an appointment for a better time that suits you.
If they are not willing to wait and they do not want you to bring your baby then refer them to another agent in your office and receive a referral or split the commission. Most of the time when people call on a whim and they are not willing to be patient with you, they are not worth your time. As a Realtor, you're not just a key to access a home; remember your worth!
If you have any questions or want to add to this Blog comment below or message me!
I hope you found this usefull!