How to Expand, Dominate and Profit w/Aaron Rian

People often let ego guide them into expansion prematurely. There are several things that need to be considered when growing a successful and profitable business that has room to expand. How do we hire people who are capable of handling business growth? How do we know when our business can expand successfully? How do we grow and maintain our profit margins? In this episode, Aaron Rian shares his knowledge of and experience in expanding his real estate business.

It doesn’t make sense to go into another market until every market that you’re in is running tight, making the margin, and is profitable. –Aaron Rian

Three Takeaways

Hire people based on where you see your business going

Hire staff who have the capacity to deal with where you want your business to go, not where you’re at today. When you hire people to deal with your current capacity only, they often can’t keep up when growth starts to happen. The most important thing to look for in people is who can handle the growth and leadership of the business into the new markets as you expand.

How to know when expanding is a good idea

Expansion should only be a consideration when you have a consistent 55-65% profit margin for at least 12 months. You must know your numbers, from your top agent to your newest hire, and keep track of what’s being brought in and what you’re paying to support your employees. If you’re not meeting that margin or paying attention to your balance sheet, you won’t be able to expand successfully and run a profitable model.

How to grow your profit margin

When your profit margin is not hitting the mark, you need to decrease your expenses. Examine your numbers carefully, see where you’re bleeding money and either try to get that back or lose that part of your business. You should also know where your ROIs are and focus on what’s bringing in the best return. Don’t make the mistake of trying to expand when your main hub isn’t profitable to the level that it makes sense to operate as a business.


Expansion is a tough but rewarding game to play. It starts with having a healthy business and then figuring out which parts of it are reproducible in other places. It forces us to pay attention to systems in our business and to look inward and consider the construction of our team. To expand and be profitable, our business must have people who can grow with it and a profit margin that enables successful expansion.

Guest Bio

Aaron is the Founder and Operating Principle of The Brokerage House, home to a multi-million-dollar team and currently expanding cross-country. The company is currently the number one real estate team by sold volume and number of transactions in the local market, as reported by the Wall Street Journal. In Aaron’s seven plus years as a real estate agent, he has been a Top One Percent Metro Realtor and a Multi-Million Dollar Sales Producer. Aaron also won back-to-back-to-back “Top Real Estate Agent” awards from the Portland Monthly magazine in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 and was recently added to the “Registry of Business Excellence™” by America’s Registry of Outstanding Professionals organization. He has appeared in national publications such as “USA Today” and “The Wall Street Journal”, and was recently featured in “Top Agent Magazine”. Aaron is a regular expert on KATU’s AM Northwest Talk Show and has appeared on several television networks including HGTV, CNBC, CNN and Bravo. His first book, “Out Front: The Art of Closing a Deal”, was sold on and made the best-selling authors list. Aaron and his team are on track to close over 650 transactions with a value of nearly 250 million dollars in volume in 2018. For more information visit or email You can also connect with Aaron on LinkedIn  

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