In Real Estate, communication is key to building strong relationships with your clients and closing deals successfully. However, have you ever thought about how learning American Sign Language (ASL) could benefit your real estate career?
According to EarthWeb, there are 1-2 Million people worldwide and half a million people residing in the US who use ASL as their primary language.
What does this information mean for real estate agents? This means that you have the potential to reach out to and offer your services to 500,000 individuals who use ASL as their primary language.
This article will explore the benefits of learning ASL in the real estate industry and how it can help you foster stronger relationships with clients, expand your client base, and enhance the overall real estate experience.
First, let’s start with understanding what ASL is. ASL is a complete and complex language system with its grammar and syntax.
It is not based on spoken English or any other spoken language. Instead, ASL uses a combination of hand shapes, facial expressions, and body language to convey the message.
It is a distinct language with its own vocabulary and grammar rules and is recognized as an official language in the United States.
The Benefits of Learning ASL in Real Estate
1. Improved Communication
One of the most significant benefits of learning ASL as a real estate agent is improved communication with deaf and hard-of-hearing clients. By understanding ASL, you can communicate directly with clients who use sign language without the need for an interpreter.
Being able to speak ASL can help you build trust with clients and improve customer service, as you can better understand their needs and communicate more effectively.
2. Increased Marketability
Learning ASL can also make you more marketable as a real estate agent. By knowing ASL, you can attract deaf and hard-of-hearing clients who might not otherwise consider working with an agent who doesn’t understand their language.
This can set you apart from competitors and expand your client base. Moreover, if you have a reputation for being sensitive to the needs of deaf and hard-of-hearing clients, it can attract more clients who appreciate your efforts to improve communication.
3. Enhancing the Overall Real Estate Experience
In addition to improved communication and increased marketability, learning ASL can also enhance the overall real estate experience for your clients.
By understanding their language, you can better comprehend their needs and build stronger relationships. This can lead to increased referrals and sustained business growth, as clients will appreciate your efforts to understand and communicate effectively with them.
Moreover, learning ASL can help you negotiate more effectively, as you can better understand and use nonverbal cues to your advantage.
How to Learn ASL
Now that you understand the benefits of learning ASL in real estate, you may be wondering how to get started. The good news is there are many resources available for learning ASL. Here are some recommendations and resources on how to learn ASL:
- Find ASL Classes or Tutors
One of the best ways to learn ASL is to take classes or find a tutor. There are many community colleges, adult education programs, and community centers that offer ASL classes.
Alternatively, you can find private tutors or instructors to teach you one-on-one. Some good resources for finding ASL classes or tutors include local deaf organizations, Craigslist, or websites such as Wyzant, Preply, or TakeLessons.
- Use Online Resources
Many online resources are available for learning ASL, such as ASL University, Lifeprint, Start ASL, and Signing Savvy. These websites offer free or paid courses, videos, and other resources that can help you learn ASL at your own pace.
- Attend Deaf Community Events
Attending events in the deaf community can be a great way to practice your ASL skills and immerse yourself in the language. Many cities have deaf community events such as deaf coffee chats, deaf socials, and deaf cultural events open to the public.
- Practice with a Partner
Finding a partner who wants to learn ASL can be an excellent way to practice your skills. You can practice together in person or through video chat platforms like Zoom or Skype.
- Use Mobile Apps
There are several mobile apps available that can help you learn ASL. Some popular apps include ASL Dictionary, ASL Pro, and The ASL App. These apps offer videos, quizzes, and other interactive features that can help you improve your skills.
- Read ASL Books and Watch ASL Videos
Reading books on ASL or watching ASL videos can help you improve your grammar and vocabulary. Some recommended books include “The American Sign Language Phrase Book” by Lou Fant and “Signing Naturally” by Cheri Smith. For videos, YouTube can be a great resource for finding ASL videos and tutorials.
In a nutshell, learning ASL as a real estate agent can have many benefits, including improved communication with deaf and hard-of-hearing clients, increased marketability, and enhanced overall real estate experience.
As the demand for ASL services in real estate grows, there may be opportunities for specialized roles, such as ASL interpreters, to emerge within the industry. This could create new career paths for individuals proficient in ASL and passionate about real estate.
Learning ASL and incorporating it into your daily routine can help you build stronger relationships with your clients, expand your client base, and improve your negotiating skills. Embrace the challenge of learning ASL and take the first step towards expanding your communication skills and serving a wider range of clients.
Your clients will appreciate your efforts to improve communication, which may lead to a more successful real estate career.
Last modified: April 4, 2023