Consult the Coach Winter 2017

Dear Coach: 

I am planning to retire from real estate next year. I am wondering whether I should make the effort to take on a partner and transition my business to them. Or, take an easier approach and direct referrals I receive after I retire to other brokers and collect a referral fee. What do you recommend?

Signed, Retiring Soon

Dear Retiring Soon:

This is quite an individual decision based on what works best for you. There are trade-offs to each choice. Here are some considerations:

Taking on a Partner

Potential Pros

  • Your split percent will likely be higher than a 25% referral fee. 
  • Your split income can last longer, after retirement, by having your partner market to your sphere.
  • You have more influence over how your partner works with your clients while you are still an active broker.

Potential Cons

  • Finding a partner to work with who is willing to share commissions. 
  • Finding the right person who shares your values and is trustworthy.
  • Being able to work collaboratively with another broker.
  • Trusting your partner to keep accurate records of their closings, commissions, and your split.
  • Once you retire, you will have little control of how your partner works with your past clients.

Taking a Referral Fee

Potential Pros

  • Less effort. You don’t need to find a partner.
  • You can refer clients to multiple brokers.
  • Guaranteed income with little effort, when the transaction closes.

Potential Cons

  • You have very little influence over how your referral partner(s) work with your clients.
  • Your split percent is usually limited to 25%.
  • Your flow of referrals will likely diminish as your sphere learns of your retirement. 
  • You will need to maintain your Real Estate license to collect a referral fee.

Based on your temperament, financial situation, and willingness to work with a partner, you can make the decision that works best for you. Regardless of the direction you choose to proceed, I would highly recommend that you create a written retirement plan so that you know which direction you are headed and how you will get there.

About the Coach:

Stuart Kaufman, MS, MBA, is a Real Estate Columnist and Business Coach who motivates, coaches, trains, and inspires real estate brokers to focus on lead generation, being accountable, and living a balanced life.  Stuart offers a complimentary coaching conversation to help Brokers begin to plan, execute, and close more transactions. To contact the Coach, send an e-mail to © Copyright 2018, Metamorphosis Coaching. All Rights Reserved.


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