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 July 23, 2012
Featured blog posts
Test Driving WordPress - 09:51 AM
I go way, way back with building websites. I did our first one in 1994, using the first HTML manual and the first web browser, Mosaic. I built several others over the next few years, but the web was developing faster than I had time to keep up with it, and when Java, Flash and tons of new HTML protocols began arriving, I stopped paying much attention. When the time came to upgrade my website a couple of years ago, I didn't even consider doing it myself - with business survival on the line, I went to the experts. And as (39 comments)
Do You Read The Terms & Conditions Before Your Buyer Does? - 06:52 PM
Recently I had a client that decided to put their home up for auction so we went out and found a reputable auction house. Seller and auction company worked out their contract, then the auction company brought me up to speed on how I would be working with them. First item of education for me was the terms and conditions which I read immediately both out of curiosity and because I too had prospects for the upcoming auction. Reading through the terms and conditions (only 4 pages long) was self explanatory on how to provide offers for the property. Fast (13 comments)
When technology gets an attitude . . . - 03:02 PM
I recently wrote a blog about my relationship with Apple's iPhone personal assistant, Siri. Siri has become a crucial part of my business life, and I lean on her a lot. There is, however, another female voice in my life that I'm thinking of divorcing. Her name is Mandy. No, Mandy is not my wife. Mandy is my GPS voice. She has a lovely British accent, and she says things like "take the motorway" rather than "highway" and at first, I found that amusing and cute. But, as with all relationships, there is the opportunity for tension and conflict. Mandy and (59 comments)
There are No REAL ESTATE EMERGENCIES - 11:34 AM
Over the past 2 years, I've really learned alot in my personal walk that filtered into my business life as well.. With everything that can hit me and my family, and all these are beyond any human control, I've learned that sometimes, it's just best to do your best, and let the rest take its course. There's only so much you can do. The rest is really not in your control. The biggest lesson though is: THERE ARE NO REAL ESTATE EMERGENCIES. It's unfortunate if we don't close on time like we plan. It's not good when buyers lose their jobs (71 comments)
Valencia Lakes In Tampa Bay - Home Sold - 12:31 PM
Valencia Lakes In Tampa Bay - Home Sold We just sold the most adorable home in Valencia Lakes! Know the buyers are going to be very happy and enjoy their new retirement! This home sold for $241,900, fully furnished as seen in the tour. It is 2 bedrooms with a third bedroom serving as den and featured granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, tile roof, and a stunning master suite. This one is a real show stopper! Virtual TourBe sure and give us a call to see the deals and steals at Valencia Lakes. With 19 floorplans, and prices from the $150's it is worth checking (4 comments)
Referral Key? Not me. I'll stick with Active Rain. - 05:56 PM
Have you noticed an increase of invitations from Referral Key? I've been getting more and more and since the invite looks and reads rather spammy [Are You Taking On New Clients?], I just deleted them without further investigating. But they keep coming, mostly from people I don't really know, so I decided to find out what's up with that. I didn't have to spend waste a lot of time researching, thanks to a couple of very entertaining and enlightening blogs by Claire Diaz-Ortiz. Thanks to Claire - No, really, Thank You Claire - I am pretty sure that Referral Key is (21 comments)
Special Webinar: Creating Awesome 'Calls to Action' - 05:17 PM
We just finished a challenge where we encouraged all of you to write about very specific 'hyper local' areas of your market. You responded in huge fashion and submitted over 1500 blog posts about every nook and cranny across the country. These are the kind of posts that can drive a substantial amount of traffic to your blog. I've seen these type of posts generate well in excess of 10,000 clicks over their life. And the real beauty? They just keep on giving. If done right, they have no shelf life and will be generating interested searchers for some time to (55 comments)
Ralph's Helpful Tips: Holding Deals Together - How to Get Creative - 08:14 AM
Ralph's Helpful Tips: Holding Deals Together - How to Get Creative Purchasing a home these days is not as simple of a task as most people think. Even just negotiating the purchase contract has so many more elements now than it used to. I hear all the time from some of the agents who have been in the business for 20+ years how they used to sign deals on the hood of their car! But going past the point of a mutually accepted offer, there's the huge task of getting through the escrow all the way towards closing. And I know (24 comments)
USDA Rural Financing! Finance with ZERO DOWN in Chisago County! - 02:04 PM
And just because the financing is rural, it doesn't mean you will have to buy a farm either! It's still the American Dream to own a home. With prices very affordable and interest rates are extremely attractive, now is a great time to purchase a first home! But not every potential homebuyer has sufficient funds for a downpayment and closing costs. So what are the options in the northeast Twin Cities Metro? USDA rural financing! Most loan officers will tell you that a conventional mortgage can require 5, 10 or 20% for a down payment. Even government backed FHA loans will (2 comments)
Buying a foreclosure? You better check twice. . . - 06:30 PM
No one likes to talk, think or deal with foreclosures - except buyers. Buyers seem to like the idea of a bargain. A home becomes a foreclosure property when a property owner goes 3 months or longer without making a payment to the lender. At this time, the lender is legally allowed to proceed with reclaiming the property, also known as the "foreclosure process." Not all lenders start the process immediately, but they are permitted to do so by law. Once the property is reclaimed by the bank/lender, it is technically considered to be a "foreclosure." Yes, we even have foreclosures (25 comments)
FICO Credit Score Trumps Divorce Judge in Raleigh - 07:31 AM
I have it in writing. The judge decided my ex was responsible for those debts. The bum didn’t pay and FICO lowers MY credit score. Why? I just don’t get it. Katherine was totally blindsided when her FICO credit score took an unexpected beating. Her ex didn’t make payments the divorce court decreed he had to make. The initial shock gave way to rage and then a feeling of complete helplessness. -- Blindsided because she believed the judge presiding over her divorce had the legal power to decide who got what and who paid what. -- Rage because Thurman did it (103 comments)
Every day I wake up and can't wait to turn on my computer to check all the new listings that have been entered into the Raleigh, Cary, Apex area MLS. Will today's latest and greatest finally produce that "just right" home for one of my buyers? Will I get to make that call to schedule an appointment? When we walk through that door, will my buyers just smile and fall in love with the house that they're ready to call home? Last month all (30 comments)
WARNING: Cheap Lot Prices Are An Alluring Siren's Song To Homebuilders - 06:27 AM
It has been quite some time since we have reviewed residential lot sales in Tallahassee, and our update is quite revealing in terms of where the housing market is heading. Currently, there are 623 residential lot for sale in Tallahassee, which represents more than 1 lot for sale for every 4 homes for sale. Additionally, there are many more that are not listed, and we will see this abundance of developed residential lots continue to impact the Tallahassee real estate market. In many Tallahassee neighborhoods, home builders are able to buy residential lots cheap and thus bring homes to the market (9 comments)
My customer loved my FAQ section on my website - 06:20 PM
This afternoon I went to see a super nice customer in Tuckahoe NY. I can't wait to help her with her flooring - she's had major buckling (due to some water damage). She is exactly the type of customer I like - nice, friendly, thoughtful and inquisitive.
It seems that she had stumbling across my blog on TheFlooringGirl.com. She found my Flooring FAQ page and loved it. Apparently, she had a bunch of questions, which is completely understandable given her flooring situation and that so many people in the same building have been having similar issues.
I just wanted to write a short encouraging blog. I haven't had much time to blog since the beginning of the year....I've been a little busy. I hope your year has seen a lot of activity in your Real Estate World. I set a goal this year of completing 50 transactions and taking 52 new listings. That may not sound like a lot to some of you, but for me, a single agent with no team, that was a stretch.
Check up time - To date: 28 Closed Transactions 4 Pending Transactions (34 comments)
Back in June , Bob Stewart challenged ActiveRain members to write seven hyperlocal posts about neighborhoods, developments, condo communities, etc. … the types of areas consumers would be long-tail searching on. Here's his post.... Do What You Should for 7000 Points and More Business At the time, I just sighed, read through the challenge, looked at the timeline (originally about a week to write up to 7 posts) and KNEW this was something I had on my list of To-dos but they had become to-don’ts. I complained a bit to Bob in my comment on his post asking for a (54 comments)
Some More Reasons To Use Evernote ... as if you needed more! I must admit, that I vastly underrated the value of Evernote. I initially used it to jot down grocery needs, and as an atm spending register. Then I really graduated! I found out that you can really use Evernote not only as the repository of all things vital (like my birth certificate, and passport) but also for what the serial numbers are for my key boxes, their shackle release codes and on what listings they are on. For listings, buyers, sellers and escrow transactions. For tracking vendors (51 comments)
No Adult Supervision at California Association of Realtors - 05:09 PM
No Adult Supervision at California Association of Realtors; Teenagers are in Control. The entire universe requires a prospective buyer to tender an Earnest Money Deposit when that buyer offers to purchase real estate. But not in California. Realtors everywhere believe a deposit demonstrates the prospective buyer's earnestness and sincerity, that's why it's called an Earnest Money Deposit. But CA Realtors are smarter than that; we're special. Until recently the California Association of Realtors (CAR) Purchase Agreement was entitled: "Purchase Agreement and Receipt for Deposit". Agents referred to it simply as a 'Deposit Receipt'. But, not any more. About three years ago our State Association modified (65 comments)
Buyers Are Knocking On My Door! - 07:01 AM
Buyers are knocking on my door. Over the past few years, I have been heavily farming my own neighborhood. Door knocking with market data reports, blogging, open houses, postcards... It has been an exercise in patience to say the least. (See "Just Ask the Neighbors..." and "Who Are the People In Your Neighborhood" to name a few.)
In that time, I have made new friends and gathered some new clients. It was slow-going at the outset. It takes time and consistency. I have been challenged by people who know "more" than I do. I have had doors slammed on me. I (62 comments)
I'm a Big Flirt on my Website and Social Media. "Check Me Out!"
A lot is written regarding analytics for websites and social media. Their importance. Which ones you should pay the most attention to. How to improve them. Who supplies and reports them best.
And while I definitely think there is merit to knowing a wide variety of measurements, I think that one analytic remains my very favorite. And that's the analytic that reports the count of those visitors to my mortgage business website, or social media, that actually (28 comments)
When Dog Poop Costs $100,000! - 01:55 AM
When my buyer, let's call her Michelle, called to talk about the inspection report on the property she and her fiancee planned to buy she was determined to get a major price reduction. There were stains on the hardwood floors, something about the sliders, peeling paint on the outside trim, a water stain on the living room ceiling and then there was the dog poop. Apparently the woman who lived in the house had an operation that slowed her down quite a bit and she wasn't cleaning up after her dog which was using the back yard since the poor thing (114 comments)
I'm going to have to start buying aspirin in bulk. - 08:36 AM
What do you do when you have a client who's difficult, aggressive, angry, belligerent, and badmouths you to others? I know, i know... it's a trick question. What do you do? Well, it seems pretty simple to me. If you can't talk through it, you "fire" the ungrateful bastards, right? Right! I find myself in that situation right now. The seller has been accusatory, spread bad rumours about me, yelled at me, complained about me, out-and-out lied about me, and told my managing broker about some of the horrible, horrible, things I've done in not properly representing her. (All lies, but (110 comments)
Don’t you just love surprises? I love surprises – well, some surprises.
We had a surprise just about three months ago this week. I went out, as usual, to feed the critters. Neither Memory the Morgan mare nor Manny the Morgan stallion were down in their usual place to eat. This is MOST unusual.
A little ways away, still near the barn and food supply but not close enough to see clearly, I saw Manny running round and round, clearly worked up about something. Then I saw Memory standing at the rise – he was running around (3 comments)
Stepping Stones From Listing to Closed - 04:24 PM
You’re selling a house, but you haven’t done it before and you don’t what you should be doing. So, you hire an agent to assist you with the process. But then you don’t know what that agent is doing for you! To help you get a handle on that, here’s a timeline of just some of the basics that I do in the course of a shepherding a listing from listing to close. GETTING READY1. Develop and review with you a comprehensive market analysis to assist you in determining a sales price that will maximize your return while shortening time on (0 comments)
A Few "After" Photos From Gardenview - 08:59 PM
A Few ''After" Photos From Gardenview It has been a year since I sold this Stevenson Rancher. And this weekend we were honored with an invitation to visit this very special home. Our hosts were so gracious showing off the house, serving delicious food and entertaining by the pool. I was so proud of all the changes made to this contemporary rancher. We had a grand time. Here are just a few photos and you know I will be back with more.
I hope you are having as Great of a Summer as we are here at Franklin Thanks to our Wonderful Realtor and Mortgage Loan Officer clients across the state of Michigan – We are blessed to have such great clients – Thank YOU for your continued business into the 3rd quarter and our 8th year in business.
If you are in the Downtown Rochester area this Summer – Swing by our new Headquarters at 414 East Street where (0 comments)
How to Avoid the Summer Doldrums, by Bob Corcoran, Corcoran Coaching - 08:53 PM
How to Avoid the Summer Doldrums By: Bob Corcoran Yes, summer can be one of the best times of the year for real estate sales because many people move this time of year. Then again, a trend I’ve come to see over my 20 years of real estate consulting is that the market often picks up as early as February and evolves into a strong selling season that lasts into June. But then for many agents, things get sluggish. Believe it or not, July can be the worst month of the year for real estate sales. People start taking vacations, kids (0 comments)
Make Money When Old Meets Young, by Bob Corcoran, Corcoran Coaching - 08:54 PM
Make Money When Old Meets Young By Bob Corcoran If you’re looking for a strategy to make some money over the next 20 years, you need to think young…and old. Word is out from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) that both Baby Boomers and folks in their twenties and thirties will set the stage for real estate transactions through 2032. Over the next two decades, Boomers will boost the nation’s senior population by 30 million, and they’ll be looking to sell their homes because, according to NAR, people over age 65 typically release much more housing than they absorb. A (0 comments)
Recruiting the Right People for the Right Job, by Bob Corcoran - 09:00 PM
Recruiting the Right People for the Right Job, By Bob Corcoran, Corcoran Coaching By Bob Corcoran, Corcoran Coaching Let’s start with a story. I had a client, an agent who had just moved to a new market, who wanted to make a fresh start with the profession. I worked with her to renew her approach to real estate, one that allowed her to see real estate as a business. A vital part of this plan was to get her to realize she couldn’t do it all. So before she started, we agreed that she would hire two employees: a buyer’s agent (0 comments)
Delaware Junk Removal Prices Save Time And Money Wilmington Delaware - 09:37 AM
Delaware Junk Removal Prices Save Time And Money Wilmington Delaware. Delaware Junk Removal is a full service junk and clutter removal company servicing the New Castle County Delaware Area. No need to drag the item to the curb we will remove items from anywhere in the home or office.
Above are our pricing guidelines for Junk Removal in New Castle County Delaware. The cost of items to be removed may be more or less depending on the weight and location of the item. Delaware Junk Removal prices are the lowest in the area and we also remove pianos, hot tubs, basket ball hoops, sheds, swimming (0 comments)
Should I Stop Mortgage Payments before listing for Short Sale? - 03:59 AM
Sherry Kotvis of Menifee, CA writes an excellent post about the reasons a home owner facing a short sale may want to stop making mortgage payments. That is of course if the home owner has the option of being able to afford to make the payments. Via Sherry Kotvis,MS Temecula-Menifee Valley ***10 Rating***No Fee Short Sales (Allison James Estate & Homes): The real estate market is going through a tough time with so many foreclosures and short sales in the market. I have been working as short sale agent in Temecula for a long time and many people ask me about mortgage payments (2 comments)
The Dangerous Truth About Sun Protection - Which Sunscreens Are Safe? - 04:00 AM
It’s summer time and many people are spending lots of time out in the sun. Sharon Tara a New Hampshire Home Stager alerts us to some important information about sunscreens. Via Sharon Tara New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations): The Dangerous Truth About Sun Protection - Which Sunscreens Are Safe? Time for my yearly lecture on sun protection. Not all sunscreens are created equal....some actually do more harm than good. Are you wasting money on a product that not only isn't protecting you, but could be increasing your risk of cancer? Most people choose suncreen based on the SPF number...which refers (2 comments)
Home Staging Tips-Boynton Beach-If They Can't See It, They Won't Come! - 04:00 AM
Kathy Streib is a home stager from Delray Beach, FL. She points out one of the most important aspects to selling one’s home. Many buyers will make their decisions on that first impression. Whether it’s the pictures the agent takes or the look when walking to the front door.
Via Kathy Streib-Home Stager-Palm Bch County South Florida - 561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging): Home Staging Tips in Boynton Beach-If They Can’t See It, They Won’t Come!Once you’ve decided to sell your home in Boynton Beach and you’ve prepared your home for sale... the next thing is to make sure your home is (1 comments)
FHA Repair Requirements - 04:01 AM
When using an FHA loan to purchase a home, there are some additional requirements that FHA loans have before approving the loan. Not quite as stringent as in years past, they are still an important consideration for both the seller and the buyer. George Suoto reviews them here: Via George Souto NMLS# 65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages Connecticut: The latest FHA Repair Requirements have been around since early 2006, but I still frequently get a number of questions on what is presently required by FHA. So I figured that it was about time to post a blog on what are the mostly (0 comments)
Basking in Some Recent Good Housing News - 04:02 AM
Lately news about the housing market has been very positive. Gene Mundt of Chicagoland Mortgage Lending shares some of the positive news that is helping to continue the recovery: Via Gene Mundt Mortgage Lender Chicagoland Mortgage Lending (815.277.4036 www.genemundt.com):
Basking in Some Recent Good Housing News Interesting statistics and trends have been reported by the Bureau of Economic Analysis recently. Refreshingly, they show some positives have finally come to many current households ... and provide reason for some momentary basking. Did you know ... * That household interest payments have (0 comments)
At What Point Do Negotiations Get Personal? - 04:02 AM
It can be argued that one of the most important roles of a good real estate agent is to take charge of the negotiations between his client or customer and the other agent or interested party. Keeping these negotiations in an unemotional and business manner can make them proceed to a successful conclusion. Once emotions take charge, the negotiations are no longer business like and all to often fail. Via John B. Joseph (Groupe Sutton Centre-Ouest, Westmount): At What Point Do Negotiations Get Personal? The Negotiation Buyer: "This is my final price."Seller: "This is my final price." And now, what happens to that (0 comments)
Common Myths About USDA Loans - 04:03 AM
Brian Moyer of Prince Frederick, MD writers about USDA loans. One of the few mortgage instruments that allow 0% down in today's more stringent lending environment. If you are looking in an area that is USDA elligible, this may be a good option for you. Via Brian Mayer USDA Loan | Rural Development Loan (Envoy Mortgage | 100% Financing | Rural Housing Loans): I was talking to a Realtor the otherday who was arguing with me that it takes 45 days or longer to close a USDA loan. I tried to explain that it was not true to no avail... So please allow (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.