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When they called to inquire about marketing their home in Grand Rapids, Michigan, they were understandably concerned. They had heard the stories about how houses were not selling and were well aware of the large number of homes for sale around them. They had very different approaches to the process. He was more methodical and had laid back charm about him. She was practical and realistic; she wanted to focus on getting things done quickly. They had been referred to us by their friends who had successfully sold their home with Audu Real Estate. Before I booked the appointment, I clearly spelled out (55 comments)
The nature of Customer service within the United States has changed. How often do you interact with a machine prior or instead of talking with a human being? We are being trained to bypass "humans" unless absolutely necessary. And, for many of us, the necessity of human interaction for many tasks is diminishing. Even a trip to the grocery store has us checking ourselves out and bagging our own groceries. This trend towards automation has serious implications for any business that relies on interpersonal communication. On one hand, we all need and desire human interaction. But, the trade-off is that human interaction is highly unpredictable and machines are while (8 comments)
In the latest edition of Business Week (August 20th), the topic is The Future of Work. This special edition is devoted to a fascinating and far ranging discussion about the future of work. It's a topic that has true relevance for real estate and mortgage professionals. What is the future of our work in the real estate industry? And perhaps a more troubling question...Is there a future for our work as real estate professionals? The real estate industry is not the same as it was a decade ago. New models and new methods are dramatically transforming the real estate landscape. In addition, a (8 comments)
4 Things You Need to Know to Build A Successful Real Estate Brand! - 08/25/07 12:05 PM
Do your customers recognize your brand? For many in the real estate community, this may be a strange question. The concept of branding involves more than simply creating a logo and a promotional brochure. It is a complex by-product of perception, nuance and perceived benefit through interaction and experience with a person, product or experience. We have long associated branding with well known products of the marketplace such as Coke or Pepsi. But, do you understand that our contacts with our customers and clients over time have the power to build a powerful brand association? What has emerged within the past decade is the concept of Personal Branding. (46 comments)
Today I was in court in Grand Rapids, Michigan to witness a birthing ceremony! Individuals from 51 countries convened at the US District Court Western Region SD which was hosted on the lovely grounds of the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. They were gathering to become Citizens of the United States of America...this was their First Birthday as an American!
Although the ceremony was scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m., people began lining up well before 8:00 a.m. in the morning. The new citizens were supported by friends and family members who gathered to join in witnessing the event and the Celebration.
It feels as though autumn is making an early arrival in Grand Rapids,Michigan . The days are unseasonably temperate for what we have come to expect at this time of the year. August is usually a steamy, sweltering portion of the summer which chases you to the beach to bear your arms and thighs to the sun. Altogether the entire summer has been downright pleasant. But, the later portion of August has played out with calm drizzling rain which has turned parched lawns into verdent patches of green. My umbrella and a light sweater have been standard accessories for the past several days. I don't mind this flirtation between the (5 comments)
This evening, a quick check of google revealed a new entrant into blogging here in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Being someone who strives to encourage others to blog, I was pleasantly surprised to see that my former broker had finally decided to join the ranks of fellow bloggers in the real estate community. This was until I clicked on the link/RSS Feed. Now while I don't expect anyone's first blog to be a masterpiece... this entry had me perplexed. It looked like gobbly gook! Why would a large, established local company in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with other 250 agents want to have this type (14 comments)
The fact is that almost all of us are messy in some area of our lives. For some, it's an extreme problem. But for the vast majority of us, our version of messiness carries a unique message if we care to listen and observe. Messiness may be about an area over which you feel you have no control and therefore fail to organize. Or it may be a means of exerting control. I have come to the conclusion that some teenagers bedrooms manifest this kind of chaos to protest against the freaky neatness of their parents! How we choose to reveal our messiness also says something. (16 comments)
Some of the most intriguing cases of messiness I've witnessed had nothing to do with piles of junk. I once listed a home that stank. What was peculiar about the home was that it was beautiful. The living room featured white Italian leather sofas. The burnished wood floor was in excellent shape and tasteful pictures and decorative accessories adorned the wall. However, due to the fact that there were some large dogs that did their thing in the basement each day, the odor had permeated every room in the home. The owner no longer noticed the smell, but everyone else did. When (8 comments)
So, How do the Messies Manifest & Morph About Around Your Home? (Part 2)* - 08/20/07 04:31 PM
Apparently, messiness is a topic of interest and concern to a lot of people. It is interesting to view the number of entries on google devoted to "self help" for messy people. An inability to keep things neat has long been regarded as problematic for many reasons. These include difficulty in maintaining order and organization as well as concerns for health and hygiene. However, I think the manner in which we maintain a mess can tell a lot about an individual and offer some insights about what may be going on inside. This is a conclusion I have come to; Messiness is a highly (8 comments)
As I drove into the parking lot of the large grocery store chain, I actually hesitated about parking my car to walk inside. It was about the parking lot. Navigating my vehicle to find a slot, I observed stray papers and miscellaneous bits of trash dancing around the ground...skipping about with the wind as though they had not a care in the world. Although, I had been told that the store had recently undergone a major remodel, I questioned how nice it could be on the inside if the outside looked like this. Anyway, I finally decided that maybe the guy who did (13 comments)
Today, I spent some time tooling around the blogosphere to explore new worlds with my cursor on assignment for my entry into the Laurie Manny challenge. It was very interesting to visit a number of sites in tandem with reading the cover story on social networking & Facebook in the latest Newsweek magazine. (August 2007) You see we've been having an on-going, aggressive discussion in our home ( I live with two teenage veterans of Facebook) about if it is appropriate for people of a "certain age" to be on Facebook. They are adamant that anyone over 30 should be banned from Facebook. To be (25 comments)
What's the value you place on a penny? That question has had different answers at different times in my life. In college, pennies found at the bottom of my book bag, locker or purse, were a little bit of a nuisance. You couldn't use them as change for the vending machine or to do your laundry. In addition, some local merchants looked askance when many pennies were used to pay for an item. In fact, gathering a large number of pennies meant a trip to a local bank (I didn't have a car so it meant taking the bus) and gathering (21 comments)
In a real estate transaction, the cauldron of stress boiling just beneath the surface can create circumstances that can turn a memorable moment into a messy nightmare. Every real estate agent who has done a number of transactions can recollect at least one horrendous closing. I recall one closing in which the seller was so stressed out about his daughter's wedding that he literally walked out of the closing office, declaring that he was not going to sign any paperwork! He was later placated with a closing done just for him at his home in the company of a notary. Stressful closings, (25 comments)
Active Rain Week in Review 8/5/2007 - 8/11/2007 - 08/13/07 09:17 AM
Does anyone remember the musical group ABBA from Sweden? They were a worldwide sensation in the 1970's to the early 80's. According to Wikipedia: "The quartet was formed through the friendship of Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus and their respective girlfriends Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Agnetha Fältskog." I loved listening to their music when I was growing up and still enjoy it. Today, their music continues to sell briskly and has now been revived in a wildly popular musical Mama Mia...the title of one of ABBA's popular hits. ABBA was and continues to be an extraordinary phenomenon. They dressed very unconventionally; designing their costumes by themselves, (73 comments)
It's funny how perception can shape reality. Pounding it fiercely into a hard mold of convenience, even if the reality it shapes is a mere contrivance or even a blatant falsehood. Today, I attended a business/networking meeting of the Women's Council of Realtors of Grand Rapids, Michigan. The speaker for the event was Dr. Bernard Taylor, the Grand Rapids School District Superintendent. Dr. Taylor, an engaging and interesting speaker gave a speech that totally rocked the core of what many people, including real estate agents, think about the Grand Rapids public schools. Dr. Bernard Taylor was recently appointed as Superintendent of the (2 comments)
Green things that grow have always held my attention. I'm fascinated, though repulsed by green moldy things in the deep recesses of a refrigerator. And delighted by the first hint of green peeking up through the snowy earth at the first hint of spring. Green stimulates my imagination and the passions of my soul. I remember being given my first packet of seed to plant as a little girl. I stared at the lovely drawing of the plant that was somehow hidden in that little packet. I couldn't wait to open it; albeit somewhat disappointed to discover some non-descriptive looking kernels inside the (24 comments)
This past year, our local Board launched it's First Major Marketing Campaign: "It's a Great Time to Buy!" Little yellow signs now dot lawns of homes listed for sale all over Grand Rapids, Michigan with this positive message. It's a great time to buy in Grand Rapids, Michigan because: Inventory Levels are Excellent and Provide for a Great Selection! Grand Rapids, Michigan has many wonderful communities in great variety of Locations! AND... Interest Rates though on the rise are still affordable for most buyers! Incredible Home Values and a Wide Range of Possibilities have made this market one of the most extraordinary times to be purchasing a New (10 comments)
When Missy Caulk tagged me on this assignment, my first thought was...How do you narrow the list of favorite books down to 5! Books are an incredibly precious part of my life. I read all the time and have since I was a little girl. Books are all over my home, stacked on my bedside table, over-spilling almost every square inch of bookshelf space, tucked into cartoons and displayed on coffee tables. When I visit a home, I always instinctively look towards the bookshelf. Books draw me with magnetic power. Can you tell, I LOVE BOOKS!! Well, here was the assignment as passed (9 comments)
The voice on the phone is strident, harsh and demanding. I'm talking with an individual in the Loss Mitigation Department; the specialized division that processes homes in foreclosure or that will require a short sale. Like a gladiator preparing for battle, she stakes her position. Looking for the foe, preparing for the enemy...adrenaline pumping in staccato squirts as she makes another demand. No, she is not happy. Neither are a lot of folks in the banking business these days. As the mountain of foreclosures continues to grow across the country, the economic prosperity of the lending industry is under increasing pressure and scrutiny. (8 comments)
When Blogger's Choice Group was launched, one of the first individuals to step up to the plate and volunteer to Host the Spotlight was Michelle DeRepentigny. Michelle is a Broker with Success Realty in Athens, Georgia. Blogger's Choice visited Michelle's profile on Active Rain to learn more about this accomplished and highly capable lady! Here's an exert from Michelle's introductory profile: "Michelle has 12+ years of real estate brokerage experience. After years of being the managing broker for a large franchised brokerage with 3 offices, she recently opened Success Realty in downtown Athens, Georgia to promote affordable home ownership opportunities in the Athens area (10 comments)
"I saw your article!" That was the first words out of Kristin's mouth as she lowered me into the chair to put shampoo in my hair. It had been about two weeks since I posted a blog about Sananda Hair Salon in Grand Rapids, Michigan and the excellent service provided by my hairdresser and the staff of the salon. I had tried to explain to Kristin and her boss what I would be doing to promote their business in appreciation for the care and attention they had applied to my tresses through the years. But, I'm not sure they truly understood. (49 comments)
Real Estate in Triage Mode! (Part 3) Tapping into the Power of Your Gut! - 08/01/07 03:12 PM
When was the last time that you took some time for yourself? No, I'm not talking about vacation or sleeping and eating. I'm referring to scheduling a regular appointment with yourself to check in with how the U in You is doing! One of the first things to go when things get challenging and tough is quiet time. With life and business swirling around in distorted frenzy, the need to focus gets shafted way down on the priority list. Precisely when focus is what is most needed. Without focus, we tend to give in to the Tyranny of the Urgent. In Triage (10 comments)
Grand Rapids, Michigan real estate information including houses for sale, rent and home buyer/seller tips. Also includes wisdom and insights from Lola Audu, CRS Associate Broker.
Grand Rapids, Michigan Real Estate
Grand Rapids Real Estate
West Michigan Real Estate
Buying A home in Grand Rapids, Mi
Selling Your Grand Rapids, Mi Home
Downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan
Grandville, Michigan Real Estate
Relocating to Grand Rapids, Michigan
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.