The REPS Blog

The Complete Real Estate Transaction Coordinator Guide

January 19, 2023 by admin

There is one essential role in real estate, that if you can afford to delegate, you should. It’s the real estate transaction coordinator, and having a proficient assistant help streamline the numerous amounts of tasks entailed in real estate transactions can save you huge amounts of resources, capital, and increase profitability in the long-run. Transactions are heavy in what they require, but as transaction coordinators become more efficient in streamlining these processes, they become valuable gems, essential to the real estate professionals they serve.

The primary responsibility of transaction coordinators, generally speaking, is to keep track of all real estate transactions during the buying and selling process. More accurately, they ensure the integrity of all information, they focus on building relationships with clients, and they step in for any tasks that the agent or investor needs and which can be delegated. This complete guide is made to give a thorough overview of the real estate transaction coordinator position—the role, responsibilities, and tasks, as well as useful software, tips on how to succeed, and even a checklist at the end that can help ensure all the biggest items required get done.

What is a Transaction Coordinator in Real Estate

To start with the basics, a transaction coordinator is a real estate professional that specializes in managing lists of real estate transactions. They handle all the paperwork entailed, they handle client intake, client relationships, ensure that all parties are informed of every detail, that they’ve given consent at every step of the way, and most importantly, that the transaction process between them and the professional is satisfactory.

While the agent or investor they serve may still be the front-runner handling the client relationship, the real estate transaction coordinator is the one providing full support to them in the background, managing all the administrative aspects of the transaction, and ensuring that each step of it is properly signed and sealed, leaving no mandatory procedure incomplete.

A trained, proficient real estate transaction coordinator should be able to liaise with clients, ensure that all parties involved in the transaction are on the same page, handle any delegated tasks given from who they serve, and ensure integrity of data at all levels of the process. They must be knowledgeable about the real estate industry, as well as have a general understanding of the laws and regulations surrounding it, because they will be making sure the company and/or agent is fully compliant and sound.

What Does a Transaction Coordinator Do — Duties and Responsibilities

Transaction coordinators are responsible for much more than just managing paperwork. They must be organized, detail-oriented, and have excellent communication skills to keep transactions running smoothly.

They play an important role in keeping transactions smoothly on track. Real estate transaction coordinators make sure that all deadlines are met on time and that communication between buyers, sellers, contractors, and any other key players in the transaction is done timely. This includes the management and delivery of documentation, and securing all necessary signatures along the way.

They will additionally be able to provide research on local transaction regulations, changes in the market, and be able to compile an effective comparative market analysis (CMA) on any necessary properties. After that, some key efforts include the complete coordination of the inspection, lending, appraisal, photography, and staging processes. Since much of this can be delegated from the agent, these make for perfect tasks to give the supporting real estate transaction coordinator.

The real estate rent roll is another area that a transaction coordinator can be utilized well. By keeping track of all the rent payments made by tenants living in rental properties, transaction coordinators can help landlords ensure payments are made on time, collect overdue payments, and increase their overall rent total, while avoiding costly legal battles. Done well, they help increase total profit potential, while also providing advice on tenant selection and eviction procedures if they are necessary.

The presence of a competent transaction coordinator is essential for the success of an effective, efficient real estate team or company. They take care of all the details that go into a real estate transaction, so that the real estate professional can move from one task to the next, building relationships with clients and growing their business. Instead of managing paperwork and potentially missing crucial deadlines, they can focus on revenue generating relationship building and other tasks that keep the business strong. The best transaction coordinators seamlessly integrate into existing teams, and help all other team members do their job better for the good of the business.

Qualifications For Becoming a Transaction Coordinator

Becoming a real estate transaction coordinator often requires a combination of education and experience. There is potentially a very large workload they need to handle, with many varied responsibilities, and so most employers and businesses will want to see candidates with some previous experience in the industry as well as a bachelor’s degree in business, finance, or real estate. Here, however, experience beats education, and some employers may accept those with only a high school diploma if they can demonstrate knowledge on the various aspects of the transaction process.

Following experience and education, in order of importance, is that they be exceptional communication skills—this is because they will often be stepping in customer-facing roles when the agent cannot or where it makes sense to delegate and save themselves time. So they will need to be able to effectively communicate with buyers, sellers, contractors, and representatives—all of which are required to make the transaction process move from one step to the next.

To this end, they need to be able to manage many different tasks, simultaneously. Ideally, they are just highly effective at getting one thing done at a time and moving forward, but the reality is that there are bottlenecks in the transaction process that must be left on hold and then picked up again when the appropriate time arrives.

They should, also, be adept with basic office and administrative software. There may be others, like industry specific transaction management systems, such as Brokermint, that need to be learned while on the job. However, they should at least be familiar with Microsoft Office, which includes deftly moving around in Excel, and if the employer prefers, then Google Suite as well.

In addition to the technical requirements, transaction coordinators must also have strong interpersonal skills, be able to work well under pressure, maintain professionalism in stressful situations, and have a positive attitude when dealing with clients and other parties involved in the transaction process.

Some last notes on qualifications may include the following: ability to keep detailed documentation, manage calendars and deadlines, knowledge on the latest regulations, knowledge on the latest market trends and where to stay abreast on the latest developments, and a generally likeable outgoing personality (and interpersonal skills) which lends well to helping clients feel at ease as they are taken down the transaction process.

How to Become a Transaction Coordinator

The path to becoming a transaction coordinator usually begins with obtaining a bachelor’s degree in business, finance, or real estate. In some states, real estate transaction coordinators may need to first pass an exam administered by the state’s real estate commission. With the educational and licensing requirements met, they can then find employment working with real estate brokerages or alongside agents or investors and start honing their transaction processing skills.

To become a successful transaction coordinator, with the ability to handle all tasks expected of them, individuals will need to invest considerable time into improving their skillset, as well as studying the latest industry trends and regulations. Many brokerages offer classes to keep their employees sharply honed, and so finding employment with one is very advantageous for those just starting out. An individual can safely warm themselves up while gaining practical on-site experience, gaining first-hand knowledge of the reality of the role.

For some final insight into the process of becoming not just a transaction coordinator, but an exceptional one capable of handling the position well, then consider easing into the role by taking only a few of the most important and time-consuming steps that can help the employer first. This is so a few steps can be mastered at a time and then the responsibilities expanded, rather than taking too much on too quickly—there’s a lot that this dynamic and changing position requires you to do well, after all.

Benefits of Being a Transaction Coordinator

The transaction coordinator profession can be one of the most rewarding career paths available in real estate. As the most important person involved in real estate transactions, coordinators have the opportunity to shine when it comes to developing deeply meaningful relationships with clients, and are in a prime position to grow professionally within the industry.

With the many responsibilities entailed, it is only appropriate to expect an equal amount of benefit. Skilled transaction coordinators can expect to receive competitive salaries, opportunities for advancement, and even sales commissions plus bonuses for excellent performance. This is entirely dependent on who the employer is, but transaction coordinators are so central to the real estate sales process that it is common to see extra additional compensation for their efforts.

As transaction coordinators familiarize themselves with the entire transaction process from start to finish and every detail that goes into it, they will solidify themselves more firmly into the real estate industry, making themselves an even greater asset to their future business endeavors. Whether they advance into a more senior position or decide to apply their knowledge and take on the status of a real estate investor, they will be positioned well for success.

One good thing about being a transaction coordinator, is that it has the potentially to be a fully remote work-from-home position as needed, or at least function as a hybrid work option for most. This is because much of the work involved is done online, copies of documents are all secured digitally, and telephony is the primary means of communication. A virtual real estate transaction coordinator can be an ideal solution for real estate businesses that operate without a central physical presence, where the real estate transaction services are needed worldwide.

Considering the flexibility that a transaction coordinator has and the present demand for experienced professionals that can handle the workload entailed, the job security held by those that can perform well can be said to be high. Not only will skilled real estate transaction coordinators be able to enjoy having employers that need them around, those employers will likely only acquiesce on any conditions to work remotely if the transaction coordinator so desires.

Transaction coordination is an exciting and demanding profession that offers job security, flexibility, and numerous opportunities for growth within the industry. Exceptional transaction coordinators can expect commissions and bonuses, on top of an already competitive salary. While this role offers the perfect environment to step into the real estate industry more fully, many find that they love the role and choose to stay with it, becoming powerful supporting allies to real estate agents, investors, and entrepreneurs.

Tips for Succeeding As a Transaction Coordinator

To succeed in this role, keep some of these tips in mind as they can be extremely valuable if followed correctly.

For one, a real estate transaction coordinator will thrive only once they begin to develop a thorough understanding of the real estate industry as a whole, and then their local market. With a deep education of real estate comes all the key points that need to be considered between the lines, or in this case, between each transaction. Consider that knowledge on all the interlinking parts of real estate will come before mastery of transaction coordination, so that you’re in the right mindset from the start.

Secondly, much of the role is largely analytical and detailed processing, but another big part is all the communication that needs to be done liaising for the employer to the various clients and developing relationships with them. This requires a certain level of empathy, and successful transaction coordinators know how to strike a balance between their (normally natural) analytical mindset and their empathetic one.

It is completely common for a real estate transaction coordinator to start out on top of things, and then slowly find themselves swamped over time. Organization is a total key to success in this role, and a skilled transaction coordinator stays on top of it by prioritizing it at every level of the transaction process. When documents start to slip through, unmarked or uncategorized correctly, it becomes a slippery slope especially when real estate business normally comes in waves.

Next, prioritize customer service and the giving of 100% attention to those being served. Clients are the lifeblood of the real estate business, and each one is highly valuable—most of which are probably well beyond lead status if working with the transaction coordinator. Prioritize their well-being above all else, because their satisfaction is the key that unlocks all other benefits of this role.

Then lastly, consider that being in the transaction coordinator position is putting you in a prime spot to develop and grow professionally by networking with other real estate agents and investors. Take full advantage of all network opportunities that arise. The network that is grown today may take focus in the next.

Challenges Faced By Transaction Coordinators

As this is one of the most demanding roles in the industry, a real estate transaction coordinator faces many challenges which can keep them from satisfactorily performing their duties.

One of the biggest challenges they face is staying organized and on top of every transaction. Organization, as mentioned previously, is a crucial to the success of the transaction coordinator. They must deal with a large volume of paperwork, documentation, and deadlines on a daily basis. They must keep track of every detail that goes into actualizing the real estate transaction, and they are the ones held accountable when one of those details is called in or is missing. Organization must be a daily mantra to transaction coordinators or else be overwhelmed later down the line.

Another challenge is that the market is always changing, and this goes for all levels—global to local. Yet, transaction coordinators are expected to have a decent grasp of all of it, because they may be the ones providing deliverables such as comparative market analysis (CMA) and local compliance paperwork. If they are negligent in keeping up to date on changes made to regulations, then it will impact the business. Staying abreast to major changes that may have affect the transaction process is a key challenge.

Real estate transaction coordinators are, of course, expected to be proficient in multi-tasking. While someone could, theoretically, just be highly effective at performing one thing at a time and do well, the reality is that the real estate transaction process is full of bottlenecks and wait times that make going from start to finish, quickly, an impossibility. A transaction coordinator should thus be able to put one task on hold, pick up another that needs attention, and even pick up the other when it is imperative to do so.

As quality customer service should be at the forefront of every transaction coordinator’s mindset, it can also be a challenge to face doing so with a smile on a daily basis. This takes a certain degree of grit that not everyone can muster as it’s needed. This is why the best transaction coordinators are extroverts that thrive on being a common point of contact. Introverts can perform well too, especially if they are in the virtual transaction coordinator role, but when necessary they should be able to prioritize the well-being of the client regardless of the nature of the communication and make them feel as satisfactory as possible.

It must lastly be mentioned that a real estate transaction coordinator faces the common challenge of data integrity. They need to be extra mindful with detailed attention to the possibility of potential errors they may commit or omissions of data that may occur, which can end up being costly down the line. Transaction coordinators are also data proofreaders, and are in charge of verifying that all documentation is accurately completed. They list, file, and submit all documentation that happens in a transaction, which means they must be very diligent in their work, even to the point of double- or triple- checking the work they are responsible for maintaining.

Future Outlook of Transaction Coordinator Jobs Within Real Estate

The real estate transaction coordinator profession is presently in a very secure place. With the real estate industry continuing to grow rapidly, the demand for qualified professionals that can fill these transaction coordinator jobs is also projected to rise. Along with the security, the flexibility to hybrid or fully remote, and the competitive salaries (along with potential bonuses), the future outlook for this role is very positive.

On the note of pay and compensation, the transaction coordinator salary range normally falls around $40-60k/year, as a base pay, with an entry-level transaction coordinator starting out slightly lower, and an exceptional transaction coordinator much higher. This does not include sales commissions or bonuses that may be applied on top of good performance on the job.

As the field of real estate shifts and evolves, so has the transaction coordinator position, and they have had to play increasingly larger roles, handling tasks that used to be solely managed by agents or brokers, as the transaction procedure has expanded. For instance, transaction coordinators may assist with creating marketing material, or take on more an executive assistant role for agents and investors, as needs dictate. These aren’t things that were expected of transaction coordinators in the past, but with this increased level of responsibility comes a more secure position for the future.

Free Printable Real Estate Transaction Coordinator Checklist

In order to help remind you of key events and transactions to keep in mind, REPS has designed a printable real estate transaction coordinator checklist, which you can download for free. This is a general checklist, that encompasses transactions in both the buying and selling phase. This can also help to give you ideas for if you need to design your own, so please print it out and use it however you find it most useful.

A transaction coordinator checklist can help provide clarity to each process, so that the status of the transaction can be clearly seen at a glance, and the TC can pick up where they previously left off. It is a key transaction coordination tool that should be utilized in order to stay organized and on top of each ongoing process. Utilized correctly, an essential step or document should never be missed, and the integrity of all data kept in good working order.

About Max Fisch, President of Real Estate Project Solutions

Max started out as a mortgage originator in the early 2000s, primarily based out of the Philadelphia market, and over the years has completed hundreds of real estate transactions between financing, wholesaling acquisition, rehabbing, and long-term investing. He is the founder and president of Real Estate Project Solutions, which is fully dedicated to delivering stellar digital marketing and lead generation services to real estate entrepreneurs, enabling them to scale and realize massive profit.

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