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Archives of real estate blog entries for March 10, 2011
Featured blog posts
How To Get Us To Click On The Suggest Button! 400 Called Shots and Counting! - 06:08 AM
How To Get Us To Click On The Suggest Button! 400 Called Shots and Counting! Yesterday was another milestone for us, we hit 400 Called Shots! :) We hit 300 on January 19th (read that post on the details of how Calling Shots works), so we average over two a day out of our five opportunities! Now if you're an Active Rain newbie, you may have "bling envy" of all those folks with all the badges underneath their comment photos, and the purple box with the star is perhaps the EASIEST bling of them all to collect! All you need (97 comments)
How To Create Email Newsletters for Your Blog - 11:45 AM
Last week, I promised to show you how I was able to embed a Newsletter Style Calendar and update into a blog post. It's easier than you can imagine. First, go to MailChimp.com and setup your FREE account. There is a 2000 subscriber limit and a maximum of 12,000 emails you can email out each month, but for the once a month mailer like I use, it works awesome. It's perfect for a monthly newsletter or update to your clients. (When you build your subscriber list to more than 2000, you can consider upgrading to a paid paln if the ROI (60 comments)
You can't fire me! You work for me! - 07:40 AM
You can't fire me! You work for me! Interesting conversation in the office the other day. One of our newer (new to the business) agents was grousing about a Seller she's working with. From the sounds of it, this Seller is running her ragged, undermining her and just plain not "getting it". The other agents were giving her tips on how to placate the Seller, make her happy. I couldn't help myself, I had to chime in. "Fire her." Stunned silence greeted my comment. Like deer caught in headlights they looked at me. To be fair, maybe it wasn't the comment, (280 comments)
Being An Effective Communicator Is A Work In Progress For You - 01:46 PM
Being An Effective Communicator Is A Work In Progress For You Despite all our cool electronic gizmos for our clients and coworkers and loved ones the COMMUNICATION part is the part we are failing at miserably. We may be able to CONNECT technically between people with a voice call, text, email, chat instant message, Facebook comment, but it is in the WHAT we say, how we say it and how it is received and interpreted where we need a lot more polish. I even see in blog writing massive spelling mistakes in the text or even HEADLINES that people write. I (49 comments)
I don't need REO's, Back to Business as Usual! Sell them yourself! - 05:36 PM
REO's, REO's, REO's! You can KEEP them, and Sell them yourself. I work with Home Buyers, and Home owners needing to Short Sale their homes. Recently I gave up pursuing REO Listings, because it cost too much money to receive nothing! Joining various sites, paying membership fees, upgrading to Advance membership, gaining their specialized Certification, and Nothing. Yes it takes time to get business, but what lured me into these companies, were the promise they were affiliated with Asset Managers, Banks, and other Lending Institutions, and all they need is a Real Estate Agent in my "AREA" Right. So I'm doing (30 comments)
Spend a relaxing Sunday at the Gentle Barn in Santa Clarita, California! The Gentle Barn is a wonderful non-profit organization that rescues neglected and abandoned farm animals. This amazing sanctuary is open to the public on Sundays for every one of all ages to enjoy these courageous and loving animals. The Gentle Barn is a perfect place for all sorts of wonderful occasions and celebrations! At the Gentle Barn you can groom the horses, brush the cows and just have a great time with these amazing animals. For more information regarding the Gentle Barn please visit the link (10 comments)
Pay It Forward - the American Dream is Alive - 04:47 PM
Our local Real Estate Board (MIBOR) is turning 100 in 2012 and as part of that has taken on the Build a Legacy project. The REALTOR Foundation is pledging $500,000 to facelift an emerging neighborhood. They are asking each REALTOR to give $100.00 and there are 6,000 of us (guess they assume some won’t give!). There are many parts of downtown Indianapolis that are under revitalization. More and more people want to be part of living in urban Indy. As Indianapolis prepares to host the Super Bowl in 2012, there are many projects underway to make the host city stand out. (29 comments)
Do People Read Blog Comments? - 02:59 PM
Do people really read all those comments at the end of your blog post? In a word....ABSOLUTELY! That is half the fun of a good blog post. Think about your own web browsing behavior. If you read a well crafted, thought provoking article do you find your eyes being drawn to the comments to see how other people have responded to it? It seems only natural to want to see how other people have interpreted and reacted to the information being presented.
Our virtual world of today is driven by our social desires. We crave transparency and we are drawn (53 comments)
You Want Number One In Google? Get Involved. - 04:07 PM
Warning: I am about to go on a rant about Google. I think you should read this if you are interested in SEO, but I just drank a whole lot of coffee and I type about 60 WPM. But if you are Google-obsessed, as I am, you will want to read this. I've been obsessed with Google since it's very first days. No kidding.
I remember the exact day and moment that I found out about Google! It was like asking me where I was when I heard that Kennedy was shot, except I'm too young to remember Kennedy. It was (28 comments)
Pet Peeves in Setting Up Showings - 05:33 PM
Setting up showings has definitely become easier. My MLS in the Chicagoland area has a tool which we can set-up to automate the showing process. For certain listings its perfect. I am a one woman office so I have agents call my cell phone since I know I can get to them fairly fast. If you need a one day code because you don't have the same lockbox access that I have, please indicate that in your message request. If you don't I am going to assume you have a sentrilock keycard and don't need one. What bothers me is these (39 comments)
The Bottom of the Market! - 06:55 PM
People are always looking for the bottom of the market like they look for the end of the rainbow. When you think you got there it is gone. It is very difficult to find the bottom of the market and it is only after several months that you can look back and say, "That was the bottom of the market." There are home buyers always searching for the bottom of the market before they decide to purchase. They rarely find the bottom and end up purchasing somewhat higher than the bottom. You can usually come close to the bottom, but only (58 comments)
There will be a major change regarding USDA loans in New Jersey and for all other states come the fall of 2011. USDA loans will now have annual mortgage insurance, which is also known as monthly mortgage insurance, which begins October 1st, 2011. This move was approved through Congress last year.
What will be collected and how much? The charge will be .30 basis points. Example:
As it stands, there is no monthly mortgage insurance right now. The monthly fee will be based on the guaranteed loan amount. You can use simple math and say for every $50,000, the (19 comments)
Key Lime Pie & Sugar Cookies = 1 TERRIBLE SHOWING! - 11:11 AM
I showed one house this morning and about threw up. The home itself was clean, priced well, and even staged well. Unfortunately when we walked in we were knocked over by the overwhelming odor of Sugar Cookies. There were 5 quart sized candles around the house that reeked of sugar cookies. You could tell they had been burning for at least a half hour. There were deep wax puddles in every single one of them. During our showing I decided to wash my hands in the downstairs guest bathroom. Above the toilet was a bag filled with twigs, sticks, rocks, gravel and (99 comments)
Dirt Cheap Staging Ideas - 12:04 AM
I often get asked, by sellers, what they can do to improve their home so it will show better for potential buyers. In this market, many sellers are strapped for cash and money to pay a professional stager anywhere from $50 to $150 per hour is just simply not feasible. However, when it comes to selling your Salt Lake City home, appearance is everything. Here are five home staging ideas that won't break the bank and can be taken care of by the homeowner themselves: 1) Pack Away Personal Items Packing away personal items is one of the simplest, and most (23 comments)
You are who you recommend - 09:53 AM
I think it's important to make a distinction between referrals and recommendations. Because if we recommend someone who doesn't deliver, it reflects poorly on us. It affects our credibility, and that's really important these days. So in the interest of reminding myself to be careful who I recommend, I'm going to give an example of both. "I know three real estate agents who work in the area of Anytown. I haven't worked with any of them, below is their contact info so you can reach out and interview them to find someone who is a good fit. Suzie Q (insert contact (26 comments)
Should Buyers Agents Be Prospecting For Business? - 11:18 AM
Should Buyers Agents Be Prospecting For Business? You bet! Prospecting must be a integral part of your daily business, rain or shine-busy or not. You must keep the pipe line full. The mistake we can easily make is to drop our prospecting when times are good and then rush to catch up when business slows down. Listing agents (good and busy ones) are constantly looking for new business bet it: knocking on doors, post cards, Internet campaigning or a hybrid of all. You Mr. & Mrs. Buyers agent must do the same! Got the point? Here are some Tips on prospecting (41 comments)
About two weeks ago I got a call from a person who didn’t live in the area and she wanted to buy a house. Now, these houses weren’t in my normal area, only a few miles away, but not a place I normally advertise. I’ve sold a few homes in that neighborhood and she found one of my old blog posts about that neighborhood.
She asked if I could go take some pictures of some of these properties since the listings only had one or two shots and most of those pictures looked like they were taken from the (115 comments)
While taking the poodle (Tana) out one last time, I looked up and saw the amazing and vivid lime green in the sky and immediately yelled for Larry. Then we started dialing the phone. Clients, friends, (41 comments)
By now, if you haven’t heard of Facebook, it’s likely because you’re still busy trying to program your VCR or you have a Victrola that needs cranking. Which is to say, it’s everywhere. But how does a professional use Facebook to build their business, generate leads, and meet potential clients? First, you have to set up a fan page for your businesses or brand. After that, you have to get the word out. The page won’t do the work for you. So here are some tips on finding an audience and keeping their interest … Give it a Proper Name: (48 comments)
Do's and Don'ts when there are multiple lockboxes in a condo complex - 03:25 AM
For the sake of agents who are either new, or would like to observe simple courtesies, here are some Do's and Don'ts when there are multiple condos (and lockboxes) at the same condominium complex. Listing agent Make it easy for the buyer's agent to identify your lockbox. Tape your business card AND the unit number on the outside of your lockbox Include a key fob with the key or put something with/on the key to clearly indicate the unit number Do not include large rings or chains that could get caught or cause the lockbox container to jam Locate your lockbox where (64 comments)
When You're Looking At Houses, Look At The Houses! - 10:19 AM
When you're out with your favorite buyer broker checking out houses, do you go beyond the house? I've seen buyers open drawers. OK, if you're opening drawers to the kitchen cabinets to see if they are dovetailed or not, it's fine. But if you are opening drawers to the bedroom dresser is a major NoNo! Opening closets to see if they'll hold your impressive wardrobe is fine. Opening the doors to the antique armoir in the master bedroom is not OK. It will be moving out along with the buyers. Many of the homes you'll see will be vacant, but others (54 comments)
To Encapsulate or NOT Encapsulate my Crawl Space (Washington state) - 07:42 AM
I'd love to get some advice, opinions, etc... I am considering having my crawl space "encapsulated". By this, I mean a 20 mil plastic floor covering, up the wall about 3' and sealed via a machine.AND, closing the vents. I have been told that this will allow ALL the insulation around my venting, etc... to be removedand it will have a cleaner affect. Since it will be "sealed", the air will be warmer for the heatingvents to not require/need the insullation around it. We will also have to have a machine which adjusts the air properly. I'm nervous about this expense (16 comments)
I've got a referral for you...and other lies - 10:54 AM
I got a whopper of a call today and it made me wonder if we need to put a stop to some common industry practices. The caller, a very nice sounding young lady, told me she was from a brokerage and wanted to refer me a couple of clients who were looking in my area. Would I be interested in helping out her clients? Sure, why not! I'm always happy to take on new clients as long as I don't get overloaded. Here's how the rest of the conversation went: Caller: They're interested in Los Altos but they might consider other (134 comments)
Loan Officer Compensation Part I - 03:16 PM
The Lending Industry is going through major changes in April as to how Loan Officers will be compensated. One of the major changes is that Loan Officers will no longer be able to charge overages on loans. Overages are negative points that can be credited back to the Borrower as a result of charging a higher interest rate. This credit or overage is many times not given to the Borrower, and is kept by the Loan Officer as extra compensation. Another change will be that Loan Officers will also no longer be able to charge additional points on a loan, as (31 comments)
Which do more damage, weak agents or pushy sellers? - 01:01 PM
We want to be trusted, we want to be respected. We want to be paid well. But do we want to lead or to follow? Which do more damage weak agents or pushy sellers? True story; I was out with a buyer the other day. A real QUALIFIED, SMART, READY TO BUY client. We were doing recon for an upcoming purchase. We had an MLS produced map and a few 'possibles' MARKED ON IT. The client wanted to get the overview of the specific area before actually getting inside the homes. Very wise in my opinion. We happened upon a property not in the (42 comments)
Serious Tips for AR Members Who Have NO Sense of Humor - 08:41 PM
Ever noticed that there are certain agents who take offense at everything you say? I have just starting to seiourly begin blogging on AR and I love it! I really enjoy reading your blogs, too. It is amazing how willing AR members are to share their best marketing ideas, instruct other members on writing better blogs with great content and encouraging each other in need of a boost up. AR is such a great site. But, we have a few members who take themselves way too seriously. I like to make people smile and have written two funny blogs recently---at least, I thought they were kind (82 comments)
So Why Do I Always Get The Weird Ones? - 08:15 AM
Well, here I am, I have been working at getting some new listings and being somewhat successful as a newer agent, but I seem to be accumulating opportunities to market and list "interesting" properties. So, here's my question: When you get an opportunity to get a listing that is unique in some way(s), how do you go about putting together an effective marketing plan? You have this new listing, it's actually a very nicely done property, but it has characteristics that are going to require that "special" buyer. It's not your typical 4BR, 4BA, just remodeled lake home. Now, some properties (24 comments)
What Happened To Open Houses - 11:23 PM
The question was asked earlier today in a discussion amongst Realtors ... "Where have all the open houses gone? 10 or 15 years ago there were several open houses in practically every neighborhood around SW Florida. Today they seem to be a rarity." Half of the Realtors involved in the conversation reported they didn't hold them anymore, the other half claimed they still held open houses, but, not as often and were more selective about which neighborhood and which house. The general consensus was that buyers simply don't show up for open houses the way they used to ... for a (57 comments)
ONE QUARTER DOWN; THREE TO GO!!! - 04:11 PM
March 10, 2011 WHY GOALS MATTER At the onset of a 2011, people were interested in starting goals for the New Year. For many, it was an opportunity to wipe the slate clean and an opportunity to start fresh. How was your First Quarter? Did you achieve your First Quarter goals? I don't know about you, but I'm ready to start the Second Quarter to make up for First Quarter! (Sound familiar?) Even though First Quarter Goals may not have been successful as initially planned, it's important to know that we get to reset the clocks just like we do for Day (52 comments)
Loan Officer Compensation Plans Are Being Rolled Out - 06:09 PM
As many of you know Loan Officer compensation plans are now being rolled out by lenders & are effective April Fools Day. What a coincidence. Most LO's wish this was an April Fools Joke. Based upon the research I've done so far, most comp plans roll the cost into the rate & do not benefit the consumer at all. They don't benefit the Loan Officer either. Look for higher interest rates as lenders refuse to absorb incidental costs that the Loan Officer used to. As a LO, I'm no longer able to absorb certain fees or costs on behalf of the borrower (40 comments)
Facebook & Social Networking Safety - 07:03 AM
The Cheyenne Police Department is set to host a FREE Facebook and Social Networking Safety Seminar on Thursday, March 24, 2011 6pm to 8pm Cheyenne-Kiwanis Community House, Lions Park
This seminar will specifically address the potential for criminal activity when using Facebook and other social networking mediums. It will include the potential dangers of different websites and information posted on the web by millions of users. Most importantly, the ease in which ANYONE can gain unlimited access to your personal and family information. Social networking sights are used daily by millions and millions of people and it is important for (3 comments)
Home Shopping This Weekend? - 07:45 PM
So you want to buy a Home this weekend? Have you gotten prepared? Here are some things you should do: Get Pre-qualified for a loan. No one will look at your offers without this and you do not even know what you can buy without it. Don't just call any lender or wander into a bank. Call me or e-mail me and tell me about your situation and I will send you in the right direction. Some lenders are better than others with certain things and certain properties. Go on line and view some of the Fantastic Homes that are available. (3 comments)
Garage Sale to help homeless pets on Fort Myers Beach, 3/19/11 - 03:34 PM
Fort Myers Beach garage sale to help Homeless Pets If you are an animal lover like our family you should plan to attend the garage sale to benefit homeless pets on Saturday, March 19, 2011. Please consider donating items for the sale. Drop off donated items at: 7875 Buccaneer Dr or 7901 Buccaneer Dr. on the south end of the island. You can also drop off sale items or baked goods at Century 21 Tripower's office at 2001 Estero Blvd. and I will make sure they get to the sale ! There will be a bake sale at the same (2 comments)
53rd Annual Fort Myers Beach Shrimp Festival, March 12 & 13, 2011 - 04:02 PM
The 53 rd Annual Fort Myers Beach Shrimp Festival will begin on Saturday March 12, 2011 with our Shrimp Parade. The festival began in 1959 as a very local celebration for the local shrimpers, crabbers and fisherman. Today it boasts a terrific parade, crowning of a Shrimp Festival Princess, food & crafts expo and the Blessing of the Fleet. The festival kicks off with the 10 am parade. The parade route begins at the island elementary school and ends at Lynn Hall Park. Important reminder: The bridge to Fort Myers Beach will close at 9 am and remain closed until noon (2 comments)
Do you want to serve God, but are afraid? Maybe don't know how to get started, or just feel there is too much sin in your life to serve Him? You know so many of us (including myself) often feel inadequate to share Christ and His Word to others. Along with that we certainly are all good to come up with excuses why we can't. Even though God has given each of us talents, we've lost them, neglected them, haven't properly nurtured them, or have let the thief and liar steal them or tell us we still aren't good enough to serve (8 comments)
NELAart Second Saturday Gallery Night is a free self-guided tour of the galleries, non-profits and artist run project spaces located in Northeast Los Angeles (NELA). NELA has a tradition in the arts that dates back to the early 1900s. The tradition continues with new spaces opening regularly. NELA is now one of L.A.'s most exciting destinations to view contemporary art.
(Individual gallery hours may vary) *** Antigua Coffee House, 3400 North Figueroa Street Avenue 50 Studios, 121 (0 comments)
Need Help Deciding on Which Mileage Tracker to Use - 10:19 AM
So, after meeting with our CPA yesterday, I decided that I really do need to start tracking my mileage and taking that deduction. I put a lot of miles on my pickup for business, on road and sometimes off showing horse properties, and I'm just throwing away money by not taking it. I know myself well enough to know that I won't be consistent in writing it down manually (tried that several times). So I'm researching mileage trackers, and part of that is asking you what you use.
I have a Blackberry Curve 8330, so an app that works with (4 comments)
That was the subject line of the email that arrived in my Inbox a few weeks ago. It's a subject line I'm usually pleased to see, of course, because it usually means a buyer or seller wanting to talk real estate. But this time was different. This time it was the publisher of a new newspaper in our little community of Jarrell, Texas, the Jarrell Star-Ledger. He'd seen my blog, liked what he saw, and wanted to know if I'd write a column for the paper, just like my blog, all about Jarrell. I jumped at the chance, of (4 comments)
Florida Watch March 6, 2011 (Video) - 10:53 PM
Why Short Sale? – FREE information on Foreclosure Defense, Mortgage Modification, Tax Consequences, Deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure, Short Sales, Deficiency Judgments, Bankruptcy Referrals & more. John Michailidis, SaraMana Properties – Phone: (941) 822-5221
CLICK to register for our next FREE Foreclosure Options Seminar "Florida Watch" is the only locally produced political talk show from the Manatee & Sarasota County areas. In this week's episode the panel discusses government employee unions and their impact on Florida government, and the Florida Republican party's desire to move up the state Republican primary. Florida Watch March 6, 2011 from The Bradenton Times on Vimeo.
As a former ceramic artist, this is one of my very special homes. This long low contemporary home is nestled on a wooded 3 1/2 acre lot at the end of a cul de sac has a four car garage and wonderful artist studio. This is a perfect home for everyone...lots of room for entertaining, lots of room for the car enthusiast, lots of room for the serious gourmet cook, lots of room for the person who (21 comments)
Who's Nima? - 04:59 PM
Dear Active Rain, I apologize for being out of the loop but I had a lot going on in my personal life and in my professional life. I've overcome all of the battles and road obstacles and I would like to make a comeback to Active Rain. I think of myself as one of the Founding Fathers of the site and I'm excited to know that it is still around for all of us to use as a blog site and to network with one another. A little about me: I was one of the first 500 members of Active Rain. (2 comments)
You're Invited as my Guest! In fact, all Connecticut Realtors are invited so feel free to tell other agents in your office about this Free Education Seminar. FREE Education Seminar on FHA 203k Rehab Loans!!! Come check it out for FREE. Feel free to invite other agents in your office or other agents you know in CT that can make good use of this education seminar which is only going to increase your business in 2011. Email me for more info! My email: email@example.com ***Do you have listings that simply will not sell? Are your borrowers looking at an older (2 comments)
February Real Estate Statistic Highlights - Metro Denver - 11:18 PM
My broker Larry McGee made a TV appearance on Denver's Channel 7. He was asked and answered the following questions regarding our Denver Real Estate Market. 1. How much property is available to buy in the Metro Denver real estate market? According to information released by Metrolist on Tuesday of this week, there are 18,685 residential properties for sale in the Metro Denver area. Of those 4,246 are condos, which includes lofts and other attached dwellings, and 14,439 are single family detached houses. The current inventory is 7% less than at the same time in 2009, and 3% less than (3 comments)
BANK OWNED!! This house is listed at a price that will sell quick...Well maintained property..Tile throughout living/dining room area...Located in a desirable community in Hunters Creek...Act quickly..Will not last For the latest status on this property and many more in the Orlando area, contact Steve Glose with Keller Williams Realty direct at 407-616-7286 or visit www.thefloridalivingteam.com. For a faster reply you can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. U.K callers dial: 020-3239-7286. All information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed on the date posted. All Short Sale Properties are subject to bank approval of Sale Price. Visit (2 comments)
EXQUISITE,HOME FULLY LOADED.UPGRADES GALORE.FRENCH DOORS TO MASTER.DOUBLE SINKS,SEPARATE SHOWER AND SOAKING TUB,HARD WOOD FLOORS,HUGE WALK IN CLOSET AND CARPET.RCSD LGT,2ND BATH WITH TRIPLE SINKS.OVERSIZED BONUS ROOM FULLY LOADED KITCHEN.LOTS OF UPGRADES. HOME HAS LAMINATE,CARPET AND HARDWOOD FLOORS. ENCLOSED LANAI WITH TILE FLOORS. OVERSIZED BACKYARD. A BEDROOM IS ON THE 1ST FLOOR. ALL BLACK AND STAINLESS APPLIANCES. For the latest status on this property and many more in the Ocoee area, contact Steve Glose with Keller Williams Realty direct at 407-616-7286 or visit www.thefloridalivingteam.com. For a faster reply you can also email me at (1 comments)
The Importance of The Interior of Your Car - 05:24 PM
We all get in cars with other people, mostly people we are most familiar with like friends and family. And whether you realize it or not, you do judge them just a bit based on the condition of the car and especially its interior. So as a Realtor, what does the inside of your car say about you? Well if it's dirty and cluttered, they might assume that is the kind of house keeper you are, and if you are that way at home, you must not have very high standards. Why is that important? Because your client wants you to (3 comments)
Making the Most Out of Small Bathrooms - 03:06 PM
It doesn't take a full remodel or removing walls to open up space in an otherwise small bathroom. Here are some cost-effective methods for making tiny bathrooms feel a little more spacious: Pedestal SinksPedestal sinks are not only stylish - they also eliminate the boxy, space-eating traditional vanities that can close off small bathrooms. Switching from a traditional vanity to a pedestal sink will reduce some storage space in the room, so you may want to install small shelving above the sink or additional towel racks/hooks in the room. Minimalist StorageWhen space is at a premium, you may not have room for (4 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.