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Marco Giancola
Beachfront Realty - Miami Beach, FL
Realtor (305)608-1922, Miami Beach Florida

Go for what YOU need. I started out at CB because I needed the training and security of the "team". 26 years later I am with a hands off high split brokerage. No meetings,no fees and most importantly no RAH RAH!

Nov 06, 2016 07:45 PM
Maria Sapio
Keller Williams of Central PA - Carlisle, PA
Real Estate Agent- Carlisle, PA.

I only considered a 'big box' - I wanted name recognition, accessibility to the tools and resources readily available, and ongoing training opportunities offered.  

Nov 06, 2016 07:23 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
Savvy + Company (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

I left a boutique for a big brand - the support is unbelievable and the fact that I can continue to serve my clients in my 'boutique' manner (office is very boutique too) yet have the resourses available through RE/MAX (franchise and corporate) has been a game-changer for me!  

Nov 06, 2016 01:39 PM
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
Fathom Realty Washington LLC - Tacoma, WA
South Puget Sound Washington Agent/Broker!

I went to a educational oriented brokerage at first then I moved to a more professional office.

Nov 06, 2016 12:57 PM
Sandy Padula & Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Florida Realty Investments - , CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

A brokerage who stays out of my business, doesn’t compete and pays out the highest split.

Nov 06, 2016 09:06 PM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Happily Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

an office is a good as the agents who work there.... interview and make sure you know the mindset of the agents and leader of the pack...

Nov 06, 2016 09:02 PM
LeAnn Sink - Realtor Knoxville, TN
United Real Estate Solutions - Knoxville, TN
#ThinkSink when you need an agent.

I was with a boutique brokerage and I'm now with RE/MAX.  Being with a big box, I don't have to explain myself or my brokerage any longer. The brand speaks for itself. I like that. The "clout" is important to me.

Nov 06, 2016 08:56 PM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

I like having the RE/MAX  name behind me for added credibility. Yes, being at a smaller brokerage can be disadvantageous. When I was with smaller, local brokerages I often lost out to RE/MAX agents and once I joined RE/MAX I never again heard "you were the most impressive agent we met, but we are going with RE/MAX because of their reach."

Nov 06, 2016 08:01 PM
Nancy Robinson Ranked #6 in MI
Century 21 Town and Country - Royal Oak, MI
#11 Century21 Realtor in the US, #16 in the World

Pros of Big Box for me: International marketing, solid branding day one, other doing the research and development I don't have to spend time on,  JD Power award backing and marketing...Extreme support and unbelivable resources. 

Cons of Big box:  Its likely easier to influence the direction of the brokerage from an agent oriented position. 


Nov 06, 2016 07:10 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

I have worked in both and it is more about what is good for you where you are in your career. I am with a big box now but can't say any of the tools help me at all.

Nov 06, 2016 01:57 PM
Althea Kippes, Esq.
A.T. Kippes, Real Estate Broker - San Francisco, CA
Serving San Francisco to Silicon Valley!

I was at the big box office, a small local franchise, a small family firm that had purchased a francise,  very small boutique firm, and now another small boutique firm.

Supposedly there was training at the big box.  There was.  I guess it helped.  There were leads that came in, but those were given to the managing broker's favorite agents, or his family members who were working in the office.

I got more training working with the small family firm, and the benefits they got as a franchise were helpful when I needed them, which wasn't that often.  I got individual training from the broker, and that was helpful.  However, the family drama was too much.

I am at a small boutique firm now.  I work with other agents and seem to be learning different things.  There are few fees, and the split is better, so I keep more money.  Nobody has ever said that I wasn't selected because of the size of the firm.  With today's technology, the playing field has been leveled.


Nov 07, 2016 05:19 PM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

It is a personal choice - what you are looking forward to.

I am comfortable with BOG BOX!

Nov 07, 2016 02:30 PM
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

I've always had the best luck at medium sized locally owned companies.  My current firm has about 120 agents and four offices.  And there are fabulous support services for the agents.  

Nov 07, 2016 01:59 PM
Diana Zaccaro Broker Associate
Tropical Beachside brokered by eXp - Cocoa Beach, FL
"The Accidental Blogger" Cocoa Beach, Florida

I've been with both and there are advantages and disadvantages to both big box and small independent brokerages. It all comes down to which best suits your needs and you feel good about associating with and only you can make that determination.

As an aside, I started with a big box and several years later went with a small independent. When I made the move, friends cautioned me that it was impossible to survive without the big box backing. Shorthly after that, I went on a listing appointment and won the listing over several agents from big boxes. The seller's reason was..."we hired you  not the big box brokerage"!

Nov 07, 2016 12:41 PM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Go where the training is.


Nov 07, 2016 08:02 AM
Teri Pacitto
Compass - Westlake Village, CA
Real Estate, Your Style...Your Home...My Specialty

Independent Contractor is what we are and that brings choice.   I know nothing about KW but have many friends at the company.  

I'm with RE/MAX and that works for me but maybe not for others.  I am very independent and went with the best option for what I needed.  

You need to find your fit and sometimes trying a few options will help.  The small brokerages also work for some but there is not a one fit for all.  List what you need and interview based on what works for you.  Be aware that some will tell you what you want to hear so go in with your eyes open and ask questions.  There are companies that hire any number of agents and not based on quality and production.  Find what works for you.  



Nov 07, 2016 06:52 AM
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

I'm with a small broker and I like it. I used to be with few big boxes and not missing any of them. 

Nov 07, 2016 03:58 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

First, I would make a list of what I need and want from a RE brokerage.  With that list in mind I would  interview with several of the big boxes  Not all big box brands act the same in every marketplace.  I would also interview with the independents and see what they have to offer.  Who fullfills your list best, and would suit your personality?  That is our insight.  A

Nov 07, 2016 03:51 AM
Shawn Kane
Coldwell Banker United, REALTORS - Austin, TX
Real Estate agent serving the greater Austin area

I think it should be who ever can help you professionally develop the best/quickest with relevant ideas on how to reach people and become more noticable by buyers/sellers in your market for the services you provide.  Large box and ma & pop may not matter as much as the assistance in helping you become a better agent.  

Nov 07, 2016 02:38 AM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

Did you get one of these shirts at KW:


Big box companies have more restrictions, name recognition and marketing dollars/capabilities.  Smaller companies are more agile and flexible, but don't neccessarily have that name recognition and may not have the in house ability to make fancy expensive marketing pieces.

Nov 07, 2016 01:43 AM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Estate Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate

Now I see why this is anonymous.

I did the big box for 9 years.  It was never a good fit for me. I went out on my own in January 2012 ... and have been flying solo ever since. 

You need to find a place that fits your personality and style. A place where you can be authentic, genuine and real.  A place that nurtures and encourages you to march to the beat of your own drum. 

I wish you all the best ... much happiness and success.

Nov 07, 2016 12:16 AM
Lynnea Miller
Bend Premier Real Estate - Bend, OR
Premier Real Estate Service in Central Oregon

Been boutique independent, been big franchise, now mid-sized independent - all in management. Any agent can find success in any brokerage. The difference is what the brokerage can offer the agent. For some, the value comes with the splits (and lack of franchise fees), for some the name recognition - although with the internet, any agent can be at any brokerage and be seen. Better question - what do you need? And what brokerage fits your personal business plan better?

Nov 06, 2016 11:41 PM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

The beauty of our business is there are so many choices. 

Nov 06, 2016 11:04 PM
Annette Lawrence , Palm Harbor, FL 727-420-4041
ReMax Realtec Group - Palm Harbor, FL
Making FLORIDA Real Estate EZ

I see. If you are conduction your business 'Anonymously' it will not matter what brokerage you are with. You are destined to be among the 90%.

Now the answer to your question is suggested by Marco Giancola and is found in your business plan. In it your 'busines is defined' (there are 100's of ways to make good money in real estate. Even residential sales needs more definition)

When you identify the broker with the right credential (agent/transaction = > National average) what you need from then is transactional engagement in your preferred business within 30 days. You learn by DOING not warming a stool in the conference room as singing kumbyha.

I find it more expedient to leverage the collateral of a brand that is synonymous with real estate. While other agents are explaining that Pumpernickel Real Estate Company is actually not a bakery, I am talking about benefits, results, solutions and outcomes.

A niche brokerage or 'Mom & Pop' will have some appeal, as long as you keep your eye on the 'engage in transaction within 30 days' goal.

Without a plan, you are destined to be amoung the 90% of newbies who never see their 2nd year anniversary. Make note, there is a lot of money being made in this FAILURE SYSTEM.  But your current experience has made that clear to you.

Did you invest the mental energy to create a real business plan?

If not, you need to buy the book.


Nov 06, 2016 10:28 PM
Jennifer Mackay
Counts Real Estate Group, Inc. - Panama City, FL
Your Bay County Florida Realtor 850.774.6582

I'm at KW and love it - you know you didn't have to drink the koolaid right?

Nov 06, 2016 10:20 PM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

I am at Keller and love the Koolaid - so I guess I have nothing to add to this conversation - sorry that you are anonymous

Nov 06, 2016 10:17 PM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

I have never worked for a big or name brand...curious myself here

Nov 06, 2016 10:14 PM
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management

If you were new, bigger firms would provide more structured training, but if you're already experienced, a smaller firm would be less of a "straight jacket", that is no corporate stuff, more flexibility, fewer "fees".

Nov 06, 2016 10:10 PM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

What do you need? Training, support, referrals, marketing, branding? Find a managing broker you like and can support you! The rest will work itself out!

Nov 06, 2016 09:47 PM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI NMLS#1483386 nailed this one!

Nov 06, 2016 09:29 PM
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg, IL
Real Estate Broker Retired

That's why I went to RM. No meetings, no kool aid, no Gary Keller telling me what to do in my sleep.

I like being under the umbrella of a franchise, I think it has benefits.

Nov 06, 2016 09:16 PM
Richard Iarossi
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Crofton, MD
Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate

Big-box brokerages  have far more resources, and training availability, for new agents.

Nov 06, 2016 08:40 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

I recommend a successful RE/MAX office for talented agents.

Nov 06, 2016 08:10 PM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

It depends.

Nov 06, 2016 07:47 PM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Depends where you are in your career ? Do you need the company platform and programs or do you want more $$$ to market yourself ?

Nov 06, 2016 06:43 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, KW Diversified - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

I have been running a mom and pop for nearly 30 years, some days those big boxes look mighty tempting.

Nov 06, 2016 04:59 PM