Groups are smaller communities within the larger ActiveRain. Join groups created by others. or start your own and
get others to join
This is the place to view the past and present contests put on by ActiveRain and its members. Everyone can join the
group and help encourage each other. Current contest will be highlighted posts so it's easy for you all to see. Let it
Curious as to what others in your profession think about a certain product or tool?
AR's community takes the time to leave honest and transparent reviews of their experiences
so you can be a bit wiser about your purchase.
Broken down by categories and subcategories for easy finds
Get an unfiltered look at what real users are saying
Leave a review yourself for others to benefit from
Add new products as you use them and gain points for doing so
ActiveRain University (ARU) provides free on-line training. We coach, consult and support real estate professionals about real estate trends, technology and social media.
ARU Calendar provides class types and registration links
Watch short tutorials on updating your photo, inserting a hyperlink and much more
Sign up for the Daily Drop so you don't miss out on AR's daily happenings
Find answers to most FAQ's
Whatever it is you're into and wherever you are, AR surely has a group for you to join.
Brand, off the wall, specific subject matters…whatever it is you're looking for.
Each time you write a post you can syndicate your post to 5 groups.
And if by chance you don't find what you're looking for, start a new group today!
Get your content in front of more eyes
Search by location or type
Feel free to start your own group
Find some that are close to home and close to heart
Each month AR runs numerous contests as a way for our members to engage in activities
that will boost their business and increase their visibility in the community and beyond.
Earn points by partaking in these contest and climb the leaderboard
Do what's good for you and your business by participating
If you have an idea for a contest, just let us know
Stay motivated and on track with new contests popping up each month
Ask a Real Estate Question
Here's another avenue for you to build relationships with others. Share your expertise with someone searching for answers.
Play the teacher role and help someone out today
Your Homepage will alert you of new questions in your state
A wonderful way to open a door to a possible new client
Ask a question yourself to get help
These state pages or hyper-local pages provide content directly related to a specific geographical location.
State, County, City and Neighborhood pages make it easy for consumers to find what they're looking for.
Post your listings, school information, local events, market reports and more
Consumers peruse these pages for information
Farm your niche market and cover all the happenings in your neighborhood
Archives of real estate blog entries for September 30, 2009
Featured blog posts
Rumors are eroding the foundation of the real estate industry. Move your business forward on facts and not innuendo! - 07:22 AM
There is an undercurrent awash in the already choppy waters of the real estate industry. And while one can adequately defend against that which is overtly posing an immediate threat, it can be very difficult to address that unseen hazards that lie beneath the surface. Unsubstantiated rumors are one of the most destructive forces eroding the foundation of the real estate industry. In these tumultuous times, those that work in the industry seek rationalization for the unprecedented shift in real estate evaluations and the lack of consumer confidence. However, in many cases, reality doesn't jibe with the suppositions that are being (71 comments)
Mortgage Delinquencies - The Coming Storm - 11:22 AM
This is one of those posts where I wish I didn't have to write it, but felt it was so important to my readers that I would be remiss not to at least talk about it. Everyone out there probably knows somebody who is behind on their mortgage payments, looking for alternatives and likely also just finding out that their home's value has dipped below what their loan amount is. I know some within my own personal circles. It's a tough situation for me to advise them as a professional because it's such a personal challenge to their pride and self-worth, (230 comments)
The Whole Story and Update on Me - Goodbye Novation - 05:39 PM
As many of you have noticed, several emailed or called, I have not been very active from the mortgage standpoint for the last several weeks. Those of you who have known me for a while have known me as the outspoken, painfully honest lender from Novation Mortgage in Atlanta, Georgia. After almost 9 years of holding the license, being the broker then the lender, then the broker, Novation Mortgage is closing our doors. Today, September 30, 2009, is our last day accepting loan applications. We have no regrets and outlasted all of our "direct competition" for what that's worth. We saw (58 comments)
Great Seafood on the West Bank of New Orleans | Perino's Boiling Pot - 09:21 PM
It’s pretty hard to impress a New Orleans native with boiled seafood. After all, we learn to peel crawfish and shrimp and pick crabs as soon as we are big enough to sit at the table – mostly because our parents quickly got tired of doing it for us. So while I had heard good things about Perino’s from friends, I didn’t have any really high expectations when we pulled into the parking lot on the West Bank Expressway.
The front of the building is very plain and when you enter there is a to-go counter and a large, open (33 comments)
The Oldest and Biggest Manufacturing Business in the World is Home Building. And it’s done in the open air, in the mud, wind, rain, snow, dust, dirt and ultra violet while almost every other manufacturing business is done in an indoor protected and controlled environment.
My advice to fellow Active Rain members? Spend a little bit of your blogging and social networking time hooking-up with and getting to know your local Manufactured Home Dealers and Contractor. (27 comments)
The Power Of Being Nice - 02:59 PM
The Power Of Being NiceA few weeks back, I received the nicest compliment that I have ever received and it came from an unexpected source. As you will soon see, it also came at a totally unexpected time!Across town from my office there is a Starbucks coffee where I like to meet clients. It isn't very busy so parking is always easy and there is never an issue finding a quiet table. I usually meet someone there 2 or 3 times a week. It has become my second office.Janice and I had a meeting with a first time home buyer. As (68 comments)
Google Wave. A cool, new idea for Open Houses or Hot Sheets? - 02:37 PM
I should feel like a movie star because Google today rolled out the red carpet treatment to me and invited me to be a part of Google Wave. Google only invited 100,000 people to test it. Apparently I was important enough. An honor to be sure -- but I'm already on information overload already. I've barely mastered how to Chirp on Twitter, how to get fans coming to my FaceBook page and while I'm good at this... I by no means consider myself a Social Media Jedi Master yet. I will play with Google Wave later in the week, and just (62 comments)
Need 'Friends' 'Fans' and 'Followers?' Paying for Social Media Popularity - 02:38 PM
Most of us have read the classic book, "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie. Now comes a new twist. If you want to win friends/followers and influence people through social media, just hand over your credit card! An Internet-based social media marketing company, uSocial.net, just recently launched a suite of services for Facebook, including the ability to purchase friends and fans. For only 7.6 cents per friend, you can buy up to 5,000 Facebook friends. The company has also been selling followers on Twitter, offering a sliding scale from 1000 followers for $87 to 100,000 followers for $3479. According to the (48 comments)
Is Video the New Photo in Real Estate Marketing? - 12:12 PM
In a lot of ways, leading the real estate video movement has been a lot like leading the Night Trail Running Without Flashlights Club. Based on the history of demand for real estate video, there is literally zero business-related explanation for why WellcomeMat still exists (ask my wife, whom assisted me in giving up a six figure salary 3.5 years ago). But, from a non-business standpoint, there are three things have driven my business partner (@holaphil) and I to persist against all odds: passion, belief in the power of real estate video and the other nut jobs (WellcomeMat members/customers) that also (58 comments)
The National Association of Mortgage Brokers is the voice of the mortgage broker industry, representing the interests of mortgage brokers and homebuyers since 1973. But this webinar is open to all of us in the industry.... Bankers and Realtors too!!
You do not need to be a member to join this webinar. https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/296700555 Sign up at the link above!!
* YSP is going away come January 2010 (14 comments)
The $8000 Tax Credit Is A Cherry, Not A Carrot - 08:40 AM
I've worked with more than a dozen "first timers' this year and not one of them brought up the $8000 Tax Credit as a reason that they are in the market! Not a single one! This is not really surprising if you think about it. Just because we, as real estate professionals, see this as an opportunity, doesn't mean it is making the TOP THREE or even TOP TEN reasons these folks are buying. (Just because MY RSS feeds stream real estate related info 24/7 doesn't mean anyone else's do...)
The top reasons my first time buyers are buying: They (50 comments)
Use Your Buyer Agent. That's What They're Paid For! - 08:01 AM
Most consumers sort of understand how real estate works. These days, if they see a home they are interested in, they'll contact their buyer agent and have them arrange a showing. If that is THE place, that agent writes the offer, guides the transaction, and gets paid at closing. It is an uncomplicated process, and one that the vast majority of souls who have mastered walking on their hind legs grasp. However, there is a misguided minority of prospective home buyers who, due to either ignorance or selfishness, don't get it. Ignorance is not their fault. Selfishness, however, is. This past (56 comments)
You can't please everyone - angry (but funny) internet lead - 06:24 AM
I got a funny internet lead the other day. Well, I would not call it a lead but a visitor on my website left the following information. I had to PG it up a little bit. Subject I can't believe it Comments You discriminating pieces of sh*t. Listings that start at $100,000????? what if I want $99,000? F*ck you.
I emailed the visitor back thanking her for the feedback and the good laugh. ;-) She was referring to the Quick Search on my Sarasota real estate website. You can see that someone can't search for properties below $100,000. On (99 comments)
Measuring Home Sales Success - 05:45 AM
Home sellers in Tallahassee are finding it a little easier to sell a home in Tallahassee as home selling success rate trends are equal to the levels that we were experiencing back in early January of this year. It appears as if the trend is going to continue higher as well. Sales Success Trend Improving By tracking the one-year trend of home selling success rates, we can observe the overall ease (or difficulty) of getting a home sold in Tallahassee, without interference from the seasonal affects that are found in shorter trends. The following real estate graph shows the short term (21 comments)
Five non featured Active Rain blogs that you probably missed - 03:30 AM
Here are my "five non featured Active Rain blogs that you probably missed"Sept 20-26. I hope you found these five blogs interesting as much as I did. 1.Can Your Lousy Lead Generator Get Better? by Markelle Harden Real Estate Virtual Assistant www.avirtualgenie.com Charlotte,NC.
2. The Biggest Sale I Ever Made by Kate Wheeler CCIM Murphy NC Real Estate for Sale Country Homes and Land Murphy NC Realtor Murphy,NC.
3. Dear REO Mega Listing Agent by Stacey Ann Baugh Long and Foster Real Estate,Inc Olney,MD.
4. Working on Your FOCUS! What It Cost You! by Valorie Stover, Quality Realtor Mission Viejo, Lake Forest (40 comments)
Fannie Mae to Tighten Guidelines - 01:20 AM
This probably isn't news that anyone who sells real estate wants to hear, but getting approved for a mortgage is about to become more difficult. From what I've read here, and what agents have told me in person, you thought it was difficult enough all this year! Fannie Mae has announced regulation updates meant to reduce its risk... beginning with a requirement for a credit score of 620. Other changes include options regarding mortgage insurance. Buyers whose loan-to-value ratio exceeds 80% can choose to accept higher monthly mortgage insurance premiums or pay a one time fee at closing to compensate Fannie (36 comments)
Questions To Ask A Real Estate Agent When Selling Your Home. - 01:39 AM
Questions To Ask A Real Estate Agent When Selling Your Home. As a Real Estate consultant, my job is to help a seller select a Real Estate agent who blends with the personality and the needs of the owner. We are all different. We all process information in a manner unique to our past experiences. Selecting an agent to represent one of the largest transactions most people make in their lives, is critical to the success of the transaction in selling your home.
A sampling of some consulting questions and process for a seller are discussed in this article. A specific program will be (44 comments)
Why I Hate Social Media! And You Probably Do Too But Won't Admit it! - 12:32 AM
Like so many I've joined all the popular social media sites, and some not so popular ones. I've spent countless hours adding profiles, uploading photos, adding videos, and sharing personal information and I've had it. I hear there's a point to all this, but quite honestly, I have grown to hate social media. Here's why: THERE ARE TOO MANY SOCIAL MEDIA SITES - every time I think I am on all the right ones, another one makes an appearance, and I feel obligated to join. My spreadsheet for tracking sites, log ins, and passwords is totally beyond control and impossible to maintain. (108 comments)
Tigard Oregon Real Estate and more: How much should I offer on this property? This is a question I get asked from almost every first time home buyer and even some experienced buyers. But, the question I ask in reply is, “How much do you want the home?” It is a matter of risk vs how long the home has been on the market. You see, when you are looking for a home and you see the listing price, that is the price the home owner would like to get without having to pay any closing costs for the (15 comments)
I am really excited that ActiveRain and the MLS of Long Island have invited me to be a guest speaker and part of their 8th Annual MLS Tech Fair this year. The days schedule will be filled with great speakers, topics, breakout sessions, and an exhibit hall full of new and exciting products from some of the Top Industry Service Providers.The list of Sponsors for this event is nothing short of impressive. If you happen to be anywhere near Long Island, NY this week, you should take a day out and spend it (39 comments)
I've had it With Blogging and Don't Even Get Me Started About Social Media! - 06:29 PM
After more than a year of blogging that was really VERY time consuming, my hard work begged the question, does it really matter? Will it ever pay off? What was I doing wrong, I wondered. Creative writing didn't come to me as naturally as it appeared to come to others. My creative moments came in spurts and fairly sporatic spurts at that.
I spent hours making video and/or researching topics and for what. And then, Twitter and Facebook suddenly popped up on my radar. What! are you kidding me!!! There's no way I'm going to spend what little time I (116 comments)
Can anyone answer this? - 05:29 PM
Just when I thought I had all the answers to the $8000 tax credit under control this scenario reared its ugly head. Your client, a first time home buyer client purchases a foreclosed property in a state with rights of redemption. In Alabama redemption rights extend one year from foreclosure date for the foreclosed parties to redeem their property. Your first time home buyer applies for the tax credit and the former family some time there after but within their one year redemption period redeems the property. To be in compliance with the guidelines of the tax credit the first time (49 comments)
Did You Know 4.0 - 09:16 AM
If you have not grasped social media and online activities for business, now is a great time to implement it. As you can see by the video...the world is forever changing and so is the way we do business! Did you know?
About the Author: Midori Miller is licensed in the State of Florida, BK645709 and currently hangs her real estate license with CENTURY 21 Sundance Realty. Midori is also a real estate trainer and an ActiveRain Ambassador and specializes in short sales for Daytona Beach real estate sellers. If you are in the market to buy or sell real (17 comments)
This disease touches so many and changes lives forever..we can do the same but in a positive way! Help Fight Breast Cancer...the reality is there is a good chance someone you love will be affected by this disease.
You never know...by following the instructions you might save a human life! SPREAD THE WORD! Please tell ten friends to tell ten today! The Breast Cancer site is having trouble getting enough (9 comments)
FALL is the most colorful time of the year in New Hampshire... It IS my favorite season!
Every fall, New Englanders enjoy the brisk fall air in picturesque orchards while plucking apples off trees fresh from mother nature! YOU are invited to attend Sullivan Farm's Annual AppleFest ... Sullivan Farm is the only operating apple orchard located in Nashua. At Sullivan Farm, you can pick your own apples/pumpkins and buy fresh fruits, vegetables and flowers. There also will be an art show and crafts! This fall, Sullivan Farmis hosting an AppleFest to kick off the fundraising season for the Salvation Army of Nashua's annual Holiday (20 comments)
"strategic defaults" - whoda thunk? - 02:47 PM
American Values certainly have changed, haven't they? I know they are a lot different than when I grew up as a kid in the 1950's and ‘60's. Then again, a lot has changed since then, hasn't it?Well, needless to say I was pretty blown away when a I read a short blurb published this afternoon by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) where they reported that Credit giant, Experian and consulting company Oliver Wyman teamed up to look at 24 Million credit profiles and determined that the more sophisticated borrowers with the highest Fair Isaac FICO Scores were more than 50% (8 comments)
Edna Hills at the Jr High Wrestling Championships on 9-23-09 - 02:50 PM
Edna Hills at the Jr High Wrestling Championships on 9-23-09 Well this is the final Wrestling Tournament of the year. Edna Hills did very well and took home a number of medals. Many of the kids will never wrestle again, but some will come back next year, some will sign up for the club wrestling season, and some will go out for the High School Team. This post is going to be a brag on my son Nelson. He is pictured here with his friend on the team Scotty showing off the muscles. Nelson won the Silver Medal. He wrestled three (1 comments)
No Standards - 03:24 PM
I have noted a trend in this country. There are those with Standards and those with no Standards. Sometimes peoples Standards differ from person to person; which is somewhat understandable as we are a diverse people with with different values and backgrounds. There are also people whose Standards differ from situation to situation, or as it is called situational ethics. Basically Situational Ethics allows people to do what ever they want then find the Standard that will justify thier actions. In my view Situational Ethics is the same as No Standards. We have an irruption of ethics issues in this country (7 comments)
Double Standards and culture of enslavement! - 06:57 PM
Double Standards and culture of enslavement! As I was googling around for loan programs for a client the other day I am across a number of loans available only to government employees. Now I have mixed emotions about this. As the employer I certainly want to offer things that will help us (the government) retain good employees. However, this is becoming a wide spread practice with a number of different programs for different job types. Now I agree some government employees deserve to be paid better than they often are, such as many teaches and public safety officers. However, there are (3 comments)
Emergency State of the Union - Live Q & A With NAMB President Jim Pair - 01:24 PM
Tom asks, so he shall receive. This is a very important message. Via Tom Burris | FHA VA & Conv. Texas Mortgage Loans (DallasLoanGuy.com): Emergency State of the Union - Live Q & A With NAMB President Jim Pair This is a FREE Live Webinar. Please re-blog this article to your sphere.
The National Association of Mortgage Brokers is the voice of the mortgage broker industry, representing the interests of mortgage brokers and homebuyers since 1973. But this webinar is open to all of us in the industry.... Bankers and Realtors too!!
You do not need to be a member to (1 comments)
Day 54: 100 Days of Central Mass Features Higgins Armory Museum - 09:35 PM
Located in Worcester, the Higgins Armory Museum is the only museum in the Northeast dedicated to the study and display of arms and armor. From it's unique architecture to it's historic artifacts, it is a true informative and entertaining environment. The museum is housed in an Art Deco steel building and hosts one of the largest collections of arms and armor in the world. There are over 80 suits of armor from Medieval to renaissance pieces. It's a great place for the whole family to check out!
Here's some information from the Higgins Armory Website Hours: (4 comments)
These 2 cute little piggies were taking a nap after fighting the pack for some food. They were one of the many cool things we saw at the Big E last week. What a fun night!
If you are ever looking for a Buyer's Agent or Seller's Agent in Worcester County, Hampden County, or anywhere in Central Mass, please don't hesitate to contact me, Kathleen Cooper at firstname.lastname@example.org . Please make sure to visit my website at http://www.MassachusettsHomeLocator.com and find everything you need from market snapshots, Buyer and Seller information, property searches, my blog and more! email@example.com , firstname.lastname@example.org , 508-523-8632 (6 comments)
If you are new or semi-new to Twitter and looking to grow your followers, one great way is to start following others. I came across a free website that will let you easily get rid of people that aren't following you back, reciprocate all of the followers that are following you and my favorite feature, find lists of Tweeps that are most likely to follow you back. Buzzom.com is a very easy to use, attractive looking site that can help you manage your Twitter more efficiently. This week alone I've gained 150 new followers from the combination of tweeting and (9 comments)
The Avenue 50 Studio Beautification Committee welcomes you to join a community input meeting Sunday, October 4, 2009. We will use the community's feedback to develop a design for a Highland Park Gateway Park outside of Ave. 50 Studio, for which we will then apply for a City of LA Community Beautification Grant. Come be heard and participate in this exciting project!RSVP at our evite - http://www.evite.com/app/publicUrl/XGCTGXBYPFNBDPJHWLUP/highlandparkgatewaypark Feel free to forward invite.Kathy GallegosAvenue 50 Studio131 No. Avenue 50 Highland Park, CA 90042(323) 258-1435 (0 comments)
I'm gonna try to wait until tomorrow, by tomorrow one of the following will probably take place: 1. I will receive an invite from Google (in my dreams) 2. More sellers will list invites on eBay 3. More sellers will not list invites on eBay, driving the bid up on the currently available invite to over $2,500. Everything you need to know about Wave in less than 10 minutes:
Google Wave Invites on eBay - 06:00 PM
There are now five sellers with invites to Google Wave on eBay. By tomorrow I suppose this market will be even more interesting.
For an explanation, please refer to this post No Google Wave invite in my inbox yet (0 comments)
If you answered "No" let me ask you this. Do you really believe that? Do you understand how lead generation works?The answer to the question should always be "yes". Here's why.Leads ALWAYS cost us something. Leads cost: Money Time Effort Or any combination of the above Most successful REALTORS®, or anyone in business for that matter, uses a combination of the three. If you are spending your time and effort on blogging, social networking, building relationships or whatever you do that doesn’t cost you money you still have a cost related to that time and effort. It may be a (31 comments)
Preventative Medicine Can Save Lives and Money - 12:44 AM
While Congress debates healthcare reform, there is no debating the results of recent studies on Americans' health. In the last few weeks studies have shown that Americans are not living as long as they should be, our health continues to be undermined by our bad habits and new cases of Alzheimer's are being reported in record numbers.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported last month that the average life expectancy in the U.S. is 78 years, an increase of 1.4 years over the last ten years. However, this is actually one of the lowest numbers among developed (1 comments)
Mortgage Rates Remain at Summer Lows - 12:52 AM
Mortgage rates remained steady this week. The 30 year again was at 5.04 which is a low for the summer. The other mortgage products remained relatively stable this week except for the 1 year arm which fell from 4.58 to 4.52. Below are rates for the last few weeks. As we can see overall for the last month rates have been steadily falling. But overall the movement has been very small with 30 year rates only dropping 1/10 of a point in the last month.
Sep 24, 2009 30-yr 5.04 15-yr 4.46 5-yr ARM 4.51 1-yr ARM 4.52 (0 comments)
Investing in Rental Property - 01:04 AM
Foreclosure City has created the perfect storm in many major cities in the U.S. - the perfect storm for investors to find great real estate deals, that is.
Large inventories, low interest rates and homeowners hungry to sell all make certain cities ideal for picking an affordable home or two. Before you break a leg rushing out to buy that bargain real estate, however, you'll want to keep in mind the most important factors in a successful real estate deal.
Location, condition, price and financing are all consideration you'll want to keep in mind in order to successfully find (1 comments)
Madoff's Mansions on the Market - 01:11 AM
Marshalls are preparing to put Madoff's mansions on the market, and victims of his ponzi scheme are hoping to cash in big time. Based on court records, the FBI is revving up to sell an estimated $30 million in real estate and property, all of which will go to his victims. The three homes on the way to market are a penthouse in Manhattan, a Montauk beach house on Long Island and a waterfront Palm Beach retreat.
Vacation real estate Madoff owned in Côte d'Azur that was seized by the feds back in March has since been sold. The chic (3 comments)
30+ Birmingham Alabama foreclosures for sale for 9/30/09 - 07:47 AM
30+ Birmingham Alabama Foreclosures For Sale for 9/30/09. Good chilly morning to you. I just love this weather. Already got a workout in this morning and feeling refreshed. I know you don't care about that because you just want to see what new listings are on the market. Today we have foreclosure properties in the following cities/areas: Forestdale, Gardendale, Center Point, Grayson Valley, Trussville, Woodlawn, Eastlake, Homewood, Bluff Park, Hoover, Sterrett, Helena, Alabaster, Calera, Bessemer, Birmingham, and Adamsville. Whether you are looking for an investment property of your first home, I can help! 14 New Listings: http://bhammls.net/BAARReports/ListitLib/show_report.aspx?ID=US11021425 18 New Price Changes: http://bhammls.net/BAARReports/ListitLib/show_report.aspx?ID=US11021428 Gusty Gulas (0 comments)
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.