Hiring Administration Staff and Employees for Your Real Estate Team

Hiring Administration Staff


Any staff that you hire must be an investment that pays off in terms of income earned or additional time off.


If you are not clear in advance on the roles and tasks that this person will perform, then you are setting yourself up for failure. Few things are more stressful than having an employee without clear direction or work to keep them busy, and therefore dragging down the bottom line.


Where to Find Them


The saying “hire slow and fire fast” rings true when searching for the right person for the job. Take your time in finding the person who fits the role and embodies the culture that you envision for your team.


Finding candidates is usually not too difficult. Consider using free or inexpensive resources like Facebook (ask your friends for referrals), Kijiji, or post-secondary institution job boards first. If you must, consider paid websites such as calgaryjobshop.ca or monster.ca as a last resort. Avoid Head Hunters and staffing firms as they are extremely expensive and the results are often no better then what you would achieve on your own.


Interview candidates on the phone first and then invite the right people in for a face-to-face meeting. Focus on attitude over aptitude. Also consider using a personality test like DISC to assess whether the role will be a good fit for them.


How to Pay Them


This is where many team leaders fall down and make a critical error that could cost them thousands in the future.

The Canada Revenue Agency has very strict rules around whether someone is considered an employee or an independent contractor. If you have a full-time staff member, in virtually all circumstances, they must be paid as an employee. Consider learning how to properly calculate and remit payroll deductions (CPP, EI, Income Tax) as your initiation into the business big leagues. Amateur hour is over!


3 Step Staff Pay Progression


  1. Project Work Only – You delegate a particular, finite set of tasks. This could also be used to describe a service provider dedicated to one aspect of your business (like a home photographer).


  1. Payment Method – Contract basis. Payment of their rate plus GST if they have a registered GST account.


  1. Part-Time – This person has regular, reduced hours. They typically have a defined set of tasks to be completed on certain days of the week or month.


  1. Payment Method – Salary or hourly. Contract basis, only if they meet the CRA criteria for independent contractor status. Call for a ruling if you are curious. Don’t get this wrong! For more information visit: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tg/rc4110/


  1. Full-Time – Works typical office hours or as modified by the job requirements. Work will include various duties.


  1. Payment Method – Salary or Hourly.



Understanding Payroll For Employees


The Government of Canada and Alberta require payroll to be handled in very specific ways. In addition to what you pay to your employee, you must also make contributions to CPP (Canadian Pension Plan) and EI (Employment Insurance) accordingly. You must deduct funds from your employee’s cheques and remit income tax, CPP and EI to Revenue Canada according to their income level.


$36,000/year, Semi-Monthly Payment Example1


2 Week Pay Earned                        $1,500




Employee CPP                                 $67.03

Employee EI                                     $27.45

Income Tax                                       $204.89


Total Pay Cheque                            $1,200.63


Employer EI contributions             $38.43

Employer CPP contributions         $67.03


Revenue Canada Remittance      $404.83


Notice that the actual amount you would be paying for this employee is $1,605.46 every two weeks, or $3,210.92 per month, or $38,531.04 per year.


Footnote 1 – The numbers in this example were extracted from Revenue Canada’s online payroll calculator and should be verified by your accountant or tax professional. Payroll software is typically used, as numbers can vary greatly from employee to employee and year to year. The online calculator can be found here: https://apps.cra-arc.gc.ca/ebci/rhpd/handleResults.do


-Written by Lindsey Smith, CIR REALTY – Manager of Operations and Realtor Development


Copywrite, CIR REALTY 2016 – All Rights Reserved