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Archives of real estate blog entries for September 24, 2008
Featured blog posts
Sometimes the simplest things in life are the most satisfying. - 12:52 PM
Life in the 21st Century has become very complicated. As a result of our ingenuity and in an effort to make life easier, tens of thousands of time saving devices have been invented. As a result, we spend more learning to use a multitude of new products than the time we might actually save by using them. Just think of the things that we did not have 20 years ago: The World Wide Web, GPS navigation, MP3 devices, digital cameras, the Windows operating system, wireless networking and HDTV. Cell phones were in their infancy, and were reserved for those wealthy enough (61 comments)
Your blogs do attract the types of clients you want to work with - 01:06 PM
I could not think of a better concept for this blog to correctly illustrate my point except for, "Birds of a feather" actually really do flock together. This principle is time tested and true. Did you know that it applies to your blogs too? As I have noticed, the blogs that I write typically attract a certain type of personality. To further illustrate my point, let's talk about Blogging for Business. I enjoy writing blogs about down-to-earth home buying tips, some pretty interesting points of view when selling homes and of course, financial matters. You would agree that I let my (44 comments)
"Start with Good Content" - The SEO of Blogging" (Simple, Effective, and Overlooked) - 01:13 PM
Jeff Turner was kind enough and technically skilled to provide us with a video feed from Dave Taylor's session at BlogWorld entitled "Ten Things You Need to Know About Search Engines & Find-ability." It's 52 minutes long, but it was clearly one of the better sessions during the conference. I thought I would also share some of my notes and reflections from this session as well, so I'll be spreading it out over the next several articles. ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ o ~ Dave began with the most obvious and perfect foundational premise: "Start (78 comments)
Click or Call - 06:20 PM
Click or call. It's a choice we often have. ~ Shop on-line or call a bricks and mortar store ~ Arrange a flight on-line or contact a travel agent (yes, they still exist, and yes, they can add value) ~ Make a restaurant reservation at Open Table or call directly Our prospects are faced with these choices as well. At first, the tendency, for many, is to click. On a blog or a website, a link on Google. We know that about 80% of buyers are clicking before they are calling. So, of course we need to be there so they (62 comments)
Does your MLS have copyrighted contracts? - 01:17 PM
I had someone from the public contact me recently regarding an estate issue he had going on. Over the course of the several days this person and I were talking (over email and the phone) I uncovered that a loan officer, not a licensed agent, had provided a partially filled out MLS contract to a family member. It took me only a few phone calls and specific questions to narrow this information down. Now, this is a big deal. When I spoke with the specific loan officer she told me that a real estate agent had given them the forms. The problem is that those forms (29 comments)
"The No Spin Zone" - 05:31 AM
Are you who you say you are? When I first started blogging in 2006, it didn’t take long to figure out a few blogging buzz words. One of those words was transparent, or transparency. Transparency, as used in the humanities, implies openness, communication, and accountability. It is a metaphorical extension of the meaning used in the physical sciences: a "transparent" object is one that can be seen through. Can your readers see the real you? Transparency in real life is about Trust. Transparency in the blogosphere is also about Trust. Are you who you say you are in (111 comments)
Are You Playing Hide & Seek With Your Real Estate Site? - 12:54 PM
If 2007 was the year I really became engaged by the blogosphere, then 2008 ranks as the year I began to understand the power of connectivity. And..No, they're not the same thing. Although, I must admit, I used to think they were.
When I first started blogging about two years ago, it was all about communicating my message and getting a handle on commenting. Active Rain provided the perfect platform and I embraced everything the community had to offer, rarely venturing out to the wider world. Initially, it was hard to understand how videos, podcasts, pictures and a short 140 bit (71 comments)
Positive Steps in the Staging Industry Regarding Ethics & Professionalism - 05:33 AM
There have been some recent blogs on ethics and issues in the industry and I thought it was the perfect opportunity to blog about what RESA did to adopt an Ethics and Grievance Policy in addition to a better business bureau program for professional stagers. Staging Excellence Alliance: During our first year the "consumer" started contacting RESA to ask questions about their stager. Questions regarding common polices and wanting to "check out" their stager. We also took that opportunity to develop the Staging Excellence Alliance (SEA Program) this is a better business bureau program for the professional stager. The program provides (41 comments)
Tax Benefits of Hiring Your Kids - 01:18 PM
As a follow-up to my previous post, I want to give some details on how you can save big money by hiring your kids to help you in your business. If you are an agent filing as a sole proprietor, in a partnership with your spouse as the only other partner, or a single-member LLC filing Schedule C, any wages you pay your children to help in your business are: Not subject to Social Security and Medicare taxes until age 18 Not subject to Federal Unemployment tax until age 21 Possibly not subject to State Unemployment Tax or Workers' Compensation, depending on the (26 comments)
What is the right way to work short sales? - 01:37 PM
Many realtors and investors out there know that working short sales can be very challenging and frustrating. When it comes to dealing with a bank, and trying to get them to accept less than what a seller owes them on a property, they can sometimes make it very difficult. It is like someone borrowing money from me, and then call me to try to get me to accept less than the amount that I loaned them. If you are like me, that would not go over too well. So, I don't think these lenders are very happy about accepting less than what (82 comments)
Double Petite Filet Mignon (about two inches thick) with sauteed onions and mushrooms for the main course with lightly grilled quarter cut potatoes on the side. My wonderful mom treated the whole family to dinner for my 51st Birthday. (I got around to writing this over a week late :)
Okay, so 51 years old wasn't as exciting as the half a century mark last year but the dinner at Assagio's Ristorante Italiano in Mililani Town Hawaii was superb! It's always an entertaining session when we go out with mom, my son and daughter. Hmmm...seems the kids always manage to get a meal off one (69 comments)
Foreclosures - Why are the banks taking so long to decide? - 05:32 AM
I just read Gena Riede's post on Foreclosure Properties (perhaps you would like to go read it) and decided to add to it here. Foreclosures are everywhere, let's face it. People are losing their homes in record numbers not seen since the "Great Depression". We are in a sad state of affairs. The banks now own a lot of property that they really don't want but there are people out there who are in a position to purchase these properties. What is the problem? For whatever reason the banks can't seem to get it together enough to negotiate with qualified buyers (in (63 comments)
We all know that one of keys to being successful is having great follow-up skills. They generate referrals Keep you in touch with past clients well after the transaction. Perhaps you've seen this for yourself because you track where your real estate business is coming from, if you're not, I hope you will. So, how do you improve your follow-up marketing program? One key way is to put the human element into it and to make it specific to your client. So how can you add that human element and make your follow-up more specific to your (51 comments)
Ever had a Realtor not tell you they are a Realtor? - 12:56 PM
Over the summer I got an email from a potential buyer (in Houston) on one of our listings. The email explained she was the mother of a boy who would be attending UTSA & was pre-qualified & needed to close by the time school started (All of this through emails 1, 2, 3 & 4). I tried calling her but learned rather quickly she was available via Email so we continued emailing back & forth. Let me preface this here by saying mom's email signature would lead ANYONE to ASSUME she was in education (NOT a Realtor licensed in the state of TEXAS). Yea, the assuming thing (62 comments)
I even got a nifty little tripod. The one I chose has got flexible legs and you bend them to secure the camera to just about anything.....trees, fences....it's really versatile.
But......I think that what I want to try first is to simply set up the tripod and do a video of myself promoting what I do and a little info about myself.
There's a couple of things I (33 comments)
Congress/Senate Positions on the Bailout - 01:07 PM
Here's a sample of what I'm hearing about the state of the current $700B bailout proposal. I've been hearing similar things in phone calls I've had with various officers for Congressmen and Senators. I thought I'd pass it along...
Subject: Ed Hill: Washington Update/Passage of Bill This Week Unlikely inHis View..Good Morning,We had Ed Hill (BofA's Washington Rep) on the Equity Hoot this morning regarding the political situation in D.C. Key headlines: Bill unlikely to pass this week or next: 128 votes short now Administration "spectacularly unsuccessful" in making their case to large groups Congressional offices getting calls from constituents (1 comments)
Why I am so Livid About the Bailout - 09:18 PM
Anybody who's read my blog in the last week can probably tell what side of the fence I sit on as far as the bailout bill currently before Congress and the Senate. I'm not just flatly against it, I'm angry and pissed off. Angry, enough that I've probably made at least 100 phone calls, and faxes to various Congressmen, Senators, and other government officials in the past several days. Come to think of it, that's about the same number I made in the weeks following the Bear Stearns bailout. Now here is why I'm one of the many people that saw (34 comments)
Short Sales-Think About The Big Picture! Can You Really Sell This Property? - 07:15 AM
"Please list my property...I'm behind on my payments and I am not sure what to do!" As I asked my series of questions, I got the feeling...I won't be listing this property..not because I can't.... simply because I won't due to disservice..due to discrepancies....and due to untruths. Now the particular property that I am talking about is not a house...but a condo. A few that are short sales and a few foreclosures but the rest are sellers just wanting to sell..but the odds are against them. When there are 18 units available in one complex and you add another to the (11 comments)
The Kennedy Team REALLY Handles Every Last Real Estate Detail - 05:05 PM
As I mentioned in prior blog entries, I often peruse other agent sites to read what services he or she offers for potential buyers and sellers. Many agent sites tout that he/she will not only find the perfect home for their buyers but will handle every last detail up to the purchasing process. What does that really mean; to 'handle every last detail up to the purchasing process'? How far do these services really go? I see that many agents offer more now in the way of resources such as the downloading of reports but that service seems to be the (4 comments)
Planning Begins for 2009 Lummis Day Festival - 07:55 AM
The Arroyo Seco Neighborhood Council will help sponsor the fourth annual Lummis Day: The Festival of Northeast Los Angeles, a free, public celebration of the history and multi-cultural heritage of the Northeast Los Angeles neighborhoods, on Sunday, June 7, 2009.The event will feature musicians, artists, dance groups, restaurants and poets representing an array of Northeast L.A.'s ethnic and cultural groups. The third annual Festival, held June 1, drew approximately 9,000 persons to events at Sycamore Grove Park, Casa de Adobe and Lummis Home.As in past years, the June 7 Festival will be preceded by educational workshops for teachers and poetry readings (0 comments)
So everyone has an opinion. All of the sudden our leaders in Washington have realized our financial institutions are in crisis. Dire predictions are being shared. One by one talking heads interview the principals and one by one they offer a vision that is terrifying. Really? Was it that long ago, that our leaders reacted to another threat by telling us to buy plastic and (8 comments)
Ford to release 65MPG car - in Europe! - 01:49 PM
The Ford Motor Company has developed a car that will get 65 miles per gallon - BUT it will not be released in the USA as Ford does not think there is a market here. The car - which goes on sale in Europe in November - Ford's 2009 Fiesta ECOnetic - seats five, comes with navigation and would clearly run rings around anything that Toyota or Honda are selling, but there is a problem. We know it's an awesome vehicle," says Ford America President Mark Fields. "But there are business reasons why we can't sell it in the U.S." The (19 comments)
How to produce the Poll result you want - 04:02 PM
It would seem that Gallup has found a way of delivering poll results it apparently wishes to see. Yesterday the organization released a poll suggesting that Obama was leading McCain by two points - but there is a problem! You see Gallup changed what is called the "weighting". All polls are weighted by virtue of who answers the questions. If you've ever been polled then one of the first questions you get asked is "are you a registered Republican/Democrat?". This data is important because clearly if you only asked Republicans who they were going to support in the election in November, (15 comments)
The Solution to the financial crisis - at the bargain price of $59.5bn! - 10:11 PM
It's hard to believe that me of all people is blogging about this, but something came across my desk today that in the changed circumstances we find ourselves in makes perfect sense. Mortgages would be paid off; stagnant real estate would be bought up; the economy would receive a boost the likes of which it has never seen before and Americans would actually start to save money! So first of all forget about socialism and remember we are the home of democratic capitalism. A cornerstone of that is smaller Government and low taxes. Once we forget who we are then there (24 comments)
Add Your Localism Feed To A WordPress Blog - 06:48 AM
After burning a feed for your Localism community, you might want to display that feed on a WordPress blog. (Note: If you are publishing the same information on both blogs, you probably don't want to do it, but if your WordPress blog covers other material, go for it!) Most WordPress Themes are widgetized, and if yours is, this is all you need to do: At your WordPress Dashboard, go to Design - Widgets
In the Available Widgets list, click Add, beside the RSS item:
An RSS widget box will appear in the Current Widgerts panel. Before you do (9 comments)
Urgent Email from the Ministry of the Treasury - 07:05 AM
A few other people evidently noticed some similarities between the country's current financial situation, and some of those Nigerian scam emails they keep getting,,,, and one of those people started sending this satirical email around: Dear American: I need to ask you to support an urgent secret business relationship with a transfer of funds of great magnitude. I am Ministry of the Treasury of the Republic of America. My country has had crisis that has caused the need for large transfer of funds of 800 billion dollars US. If you would assist me in this transfer, it would be most profitable to (7 comments)
Etsy: For Artists and Craftspeople - 07:34 PM
I still have an unfinished mission: To help a friend sell her handcrafted jewelry online. Folks who have followed me here on AR for a while know this project has been hanging around for over a year. :-) I think I just got lucky. Someone at her work told this friend about Etsy (rhymes with "Betsy") http://www.etsy.com/index.php It's sort of like Ebay for artistians and craftspeople. Anybody else ever hear of Etsy? Any feedback? Comments? Right now I'm all over it. If I can manage to avoid real estate/property rental problems for a few days, I just might have a store (5 comments)
And I'm one of them, too. In fact, I have been for years – a member of the Baltimore chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners. It's been the source of contacts and good friends over the years. This is where I first met Peg Silloway my publisher, over 20 years ago. At the time we were both in different careers. Peg was a CPA and I was a ceramic artist.
Yesterday the new season got under way with a lunch meeting at Gia Magliano's Confetti's Event Centerin Towson. Right away I saw a great marketing idea that Gia (5 comments)
How Do You Feel About Framing Content? - 12:20 AM
Got Frames?Recently I learned how to frame what's basically an RSS feed from our MLS (all allowed) and I was very proud of myself for figuring out how to do it. I want to make my sites "content rich", so this seems like a plus. Since I'm doing it through approved vendors and my MLS, which gives credit to the listing broker and agent, there's no foul play. But what of those who frame content that isn't theirs? Content they don't have a right to use?Today I was surfing around some Silicon Valley real estate websites to see what other local (0 comments)
Enjoy the down-home values of this delightful 3 or 4 bedroom, 2+ bath, two story in fine condition enhanced by mountain view. Lovely details in this welcoming residence include hardwood flooring, a rocking chair front porch, and a cozy fireplace. A very comfortable lifestyle and next to new
Picture yourself relaxing in front of a crackling fire watching the big game................
Large, eat in kitchen has center island, pantry, and lots of counter space. A "FEATURED HOME" at (1 comments)
Chesley is an executive home neighborhood located on the East side of Chapel Hill with excellent access to Durham (via Erwin Road) and I-40. These homes were built in the 1990s and are transitional, contemporary and traditional. The first section is quite hilly. You can find houses with basements in this section. The second section is flat with nice back yards. This neighborhood is very close to East Chapel Hill High School and across the street from Silver Creek, another executive home neighborhood. Schools: Rashkis Elementary, Guy Phillips Middle School, East Chapel Hill High School To search for homes in Chesley (0 comments)
Silver Creek is an executive home neighborhood located on the east side of Chapel Hill. This neighborhood is located next to East Chapel Hill High and has great access to Durham and I-40. These homes were built in the 1990s and 2000s by a number of different custom builders. There are a few smaller homes in this neighborhood but most are well over $600,000. Schools: Rashkis Elementary, Guy Phillips Middle, East Chapel Hill High To search for homes in Silver Creek or Chapel Hill, Click Here. To view all homes currently available in the Silver Creek neighborhood, click here. (0 comments)
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