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How can you tell when a short sale buyer is serious about his offer? - 01/31/12 12:59 AM
How can you tell when a short sale buyer is serious about his offer?Being both a listing and selling agent for short sales, I’ve had my share of buyers backing away from a short sale, and having to start all over again.I’ve even had buyers who wanted to write multiple offers wanting to see which one will stick. Not only is doing that a lot of work, it also describes what kind of buyers they are. When writing an offer, one is expected to write in good faith. Writing multiple offers is hardly that. What is good faith?Wikipedia describes it (25 comments)
Would you petition to extend Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act? - 01/30/12 04:45 PM
Petition to extend Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act As many of us may already know, the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act of 2007 is expiring December 31 2012. However, we also know that we expect more property owners will explore going through a short sale. But will they have enough time? Will the lenders act quicker to approve/reject/counter short sale applications? According to the IRS, "The Mortgage Debt Relief Act of 2007 generally allows taxpayers to exclude income from the discharge of debt on their principal residence. Debt reduced through mortgage restructuring, as well as mortgage debt forgiven in connection with a foreclosure, (16 comments)
An Evening of Jazz & Love Songs in Alameda CA - 01/29/12 10:02 PM
An Evening of Jazz & Love Songs One of the best things to come to Alameda CA is the Rhythmix Cultural Works on Blanding Avenue. It hosts a multitude of events --- art shows, short plays, music, dance and more.On Friday, February 3 at 8 pm, they’re featuring the Kelly Park Trio for an Evening of Jazz and Love Songs.The first time I wanted to see them, my partner Gary wasn’t too enthused because jazz ain’t his thing, and love songs? Puh-leeze!But as we sat there in this cozy theater where every seat is a great seat, and Kathy Moehring started (2 comments)
Remodeling/expanding historic homes in Alameda CA? GET A PERMIT! - 01/29/12 07:17 PM
Remodeling/expanding homes in historic Alameda CA? GET A PERMIT!Alameda CA is an island on San Francisco Bay, between San Francisco and Oakland. According to the Alameda Museum’s historical account of Alameda, “That Alameda has more Victorian style homes per capita that any other place in the United States is a tribute due largely to the establishment of the Alameda Architectural Preservation Society in the early 1970s and the Alameda Historical Society and Museum founded in 1948.”Because of the historical significance of many of Alameda’s vintage homes, the community is very protective of maintaining the characteristics of these treasures. People are best (2 comments)
What are extenuating circumstances to allow someone to buy another house after short sale or foreclosure? - 01/28/12 01:57 AM
What are extenuating circumstances to allow someone to buy another house after short sale or foreclosure? During a presentation to our office, a lender gave us insight on the ever-changing rules about how soon after a short sale or foreclosure can someone buy a home? We thought: Oh, after a short sale, maybe 2 years or less. After a foreclosure, it could be 7-10 years. The right answer is....”It depends” He proceeded to share some information that surprised us. He told us about extenuating circumstances that actually allowed a person to buy a home mere days after a short sale. (2 comments)
7 Proven Strategies to Help You Buy Your Very First Home - 01/28/12 12:49 AM
This is an excellent explanationp that Anotnio Cardenas provided to help prepare the first time buyer. Seeing that buying a first home is one of the biggest and most important a first time buyer will make at this stage of his life, it is critically important that he has an experienced, caring, responsible, resourceful team working for him. That team consists of his realtor, lender, inspectors, escrow officer, insurance agency, and the various craftsmen who will help put him with his remodeling and repair projects. Via Antonio & Alexia Cardenas "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.): Despite the (3 comments)
Buyer’s Preferred Lender Makes Agent Nervous - 01/27/12 08:59 PM
Buyer’s Preferred Lender Makes Agent NervousSometimes, home buyers will insist on using their own Mortgage Lender because it’s a friend of a family member, etc. We all love referrals from friends of friends/family, so I can’t and won’t say that it’s not advisable to do so...But sometimes...maybe sometimes....you get something in the pit of your stomach when you know that something could go wrong when you think the Home Buyer may have made an error in picking a certain Mortgage Lender.Signs of uncertainty (lack of confidence?) Although the Buyer had originally consented to open escrow with the title company trusted by (15 comments)
Buyer investigation: how much of the responsibility rests on the buyer and/or his agent? - 01/27/12 05:16 AM
Buyer investigationJust how much of the responsibility to conduct this buyer investigation rests on the buyer and his agent? With our California residential purchase agreement is a Buyer Inspection Advisory. We supplement this with the Statewide Buyer and Seller Advisory, Buyer Inspections Selection, and the usual local disclosures. One would think that the buyer is duly informed of his rights and obligations. But agent beware! Buyers may not read these advisories and disclosures carefully. The Buyer may think that all he needs to do, should he choose, is to get the inspections done. He may expect the agent to do (63 comments)
Vacant Property Legislation: Prevent blight. Fine the seller. File lien against property. - 01/25/12 04:24 AM
We are going through an incredibly challenging period in real estate where the tsunami of distressed properties created new problems. Local communities and governments are grappling with the challenge of maintaining neighborhood safety and quality of life amidst the sea of vacated and vandalized homes.Vacant Property LegislationCity after city are attempting to resolve the blight caused by vacated homes that fall to disrepair or are magnet to vandals and looters. These destructive forces cause irreparable damage not only to the properties but the neighborhood’s value as well.Does Your City Have Vacant Property Legislation? Many cities have already passed, or are proposing (13 comments)
Seller decides to do a short sale....what shouldn’t he stop paying? - 01/24/12 11:33 PM
Seller decides to do a short sale....what shouldn’t he stop paying?We’ve seen sellers walk with their tails between their legs, feeling defeated. What we can do for them, besides offer empathy, is to advise them on what they can and cannot do to make the short sale move forward.Part of that counseling is to ensure they don’t do anything to jeopardize the sale. Please note, no one will or should tell the seller to stop making their home mortgage to qualify for a short sale
Seller is financially strapped and would like to stop paying for several things. So what (44 comments)
Can’t type on an iPad? Try writing with one finger. It’s Penultimate. - 01/24/12 04:27 PM
Can’t type on an ipad or tablet? Try writing with one finger. It’s Penultimate.Going from a keyboard to a picture of a keyboard on a tablet can be real challenging if you have to take notes quickly. In a conference or seminar, sometimes it’s necessary to draw something. Here’s your answer: Penultimate. At only 99 cents, it's a great deal! The application is described as ** The original, powerful, still easiest-to-use handwriting app for iPad. On sale. ** Penultimate gives you the fast, tactile gratification of writing on paper, with digital power and flexibility. Take notes, keep sketches, or share your (20 comments)
Is a gift letter really a gift if the giver expects to be repaid? - 01/23/12 10:24 PM
Is a gift letter really a gift if the giver expects to be repaid?Buyer is short of cash for down payment and closing costs although he can qualify for the loan. He turns to members of his family for help. Gift letter Someone proposes to get a gift letter for the amount of the difference between what he can borrow, and what he needs for down payment and closing costs. Then buyer can present that letter to the lender who includes this as one of the buyer’s sources of funds.But is it really a gift? Or is it a disguised loan? (18 comments)
San Leandro CA Real Estate Market Report January 2011: Seller's Market - 01/22/12 08:30 PM
San Leandro CA Real Estate Market Report January 2011: Seller's MarketOne of my favorite neighborhoods in San Leandro CA is Estudillo Estates. It’s a beautiful neighborhood of about 1200 homes. The people who live there have their own association and newsletter, dedicated to preserving the neighborhood’s charming character. Many of the homes are Tudor and Mediterranean style, developed by the same people who developed the sought-after Fernside District in Alameda CA.San Leandro has many other nice communities....but like the rest of the country, it has its share of real estate woes. Following are charts for detached single familyhomes over a two-year (5 comments)
Of all the cities where you’ve lived, which one is your favorite? - 01/22/12 01:28 AM
Of all the cities where you’ve lived, which one is your favorite?I overheard someone ask this question addressed to an executive who was just relocating to the area. Since he was frequently relocated from state to state, city to city, it was surely a question he’s heard before. What surprised, and certainly endeared him to his new team of employees and neighbors was his answer: “My favorite city is where I live now.”That answer lingered with me especially since from the time I heard his answer, I also traveled and moved to different cities and states. And I always found something (62 comments)
Hayward CA housing market: boom to bust. Over 60% of sales in 2011 were bank-owned. - 01/21/12 11:52 PM
Hayward CA housing market: boom to bust. Over 60% of sales in 2011 were bank-owned.Downtown Hayward CA offers its version of an urban experience to residents and guests who go to the ultra-modern City Hall, see movies at the new multi-screen movie theater, get a bite to eat at many restaurants that range from the ubiquitous taqueria to fine dining at Neumanali’s. Library. Hardware store. Grocery. Yup. All here. For added measure, BART is just around the corner from an enclave of newer townhouses and condos. Today they had their weekly Farmer’s Market. And in summer, they have their outdoor concerts. (6 comments)
300,000 Points in Under a Year – 100 Things that I Remember - 01/21/12 01:07 AM
Tom posted his thoughts on how he got 300,000 points in a year. All I can say is WOW. This was definitely worth sharing. I'm bookmarking this, and will check out as many things as I can. However, we should remember that it isn't about racking up points...that's just part of the fun. But to actually learn something, even teach, and then make a lot of friends, widen your network, get some google juice along the way, and then get a few clients too? That's the real benefit of being on Active Rain. Via Tom Arstingstall - Tromler Construction General Contractor (7 comments)
Buyer gets inspections but backs out of contract. What happens to inspection reports? - 01/20/12 06:34 PM
Buyer gets inspections but backs out of contract. What happens to inspection reports?This buyer wrote an offer on an REO (Real estate owned or bank-owned) property in Richmond CA and was accepted. She was all excited and had her inspections done. However, her loan didn’t go through for one reason or another, and she had to back out of contract.FHA loan applicationBecause she applied for an FHA loan, the application was attached to the property. As such, no one else could apply for a loan on this property until or unless that application is cleared or released.It took nearly 4 months (8 comments)
SEO Back to Basics - Reviewing the Site Architecture, Content, Keywords, Back Links of My Websites - 01/20/12 12:04 PM
This was one of my must-dos. Learning more about SEO, and applying what I learned. Fred posted a fabulous summary about what it is, where to get info on how to do it, and more. He just saved me a lot of time researching resources, Just had to share! Via Fred Griffin Real Estate LLC: I am creating 2 new Websites. Step #1 is to make sure that the Site Architecture is correctly designed for SEO. According to Wikipedia, "Website architecture is an approach to the design and planning of websites which, like architecture itself, involves technical, aesthetic and functional criteria... this (7 comments)
You get a call/email, or you meet someone at an open house, who says he/she wants to see a property. How do you know if this is a good lead?
Motivated Buyer Goodness, why would one take on a new buyer without qualifying him first? But sometimes, we may miss the signals or we don't really find out the Buyer is neither ready nor motivated until it comes to crunch time. Or can we?
Qualify your prospects We already know the factors when buying property: pre-approval, funds, (13 comments)
ActiveRain Blog Posts: The Top 10 of 2011 - Pro to Pro Edition - 01/19/12 03:54 PM
THought that this was interesting. I don't remember reading any of these, so it's a good way to capture the links of the top 10. Thanks, Kerrie for summarizing and providing the links. Must share! Via ActiveRain Corp.: ActiveRain Blog Posts: The Top 10 of 2011 - Pro to Pro Edition Welcome to the Pro to Pro Edition of the Top 10 Pageviews of 2011. Thank you all for joining us tonight at this black tie affair. You all looked wonderful rolling down the red carpet tonight. Is that Prada? Vintage? Oh we'll just have to wait for the next rag mag (3 comments)
"Do you feel lucky, punk?" Your number is up! - 01/19/12 12:36 PM
It’s a numbers game. I saw some recent posts of people who noticed some fabulous numbers on their Active Rain accountsthat one can only think of as auspicious. According to Merriam-Webster: 1: showing or suggesting that future success is likely :propitious <made an auspicious beginning> 2: attended by good fortune :prosperous <an auspicious year> So I started watching my numbers to see if I’ll be lucky enough to see some lucky patterns. Last night, I think I found them! Chinese have strong beliefs in lucky numbers, and they have a saying that "Good things come in pairs." For the first (9 comments)
5 Reasons You Need To Be Pre-Approved For A Home Loan - 01/19/12 02:03 AM
This is a well-written post that explains why it is necessary to be pre-approved. No matter how many times we tell buyers to do this first, we are constantly running into new buyers who want to start looking at houses before they talk to a lender. Yes, it's a waste of time to look at homes that could be beyond their means. But even worse....to fall in love with a house only to find out they can't afford it. It is a painful lesson. Kudos to Amanda. Tell her so! Via Amanda S. Davidson (Keller Williams Realty): “Why do I need (1 comments)
Three months on the market. No action, then boom! - 01/17/12 07:01 PM
Three months on the market. No action, then boom! Multiple offers after price reduction Can you say discount? This Alameda CA property was offered for sale in October 2011 right before the sellers were relocated out of state. The listing agent, with the sellers’ blessing, did all the right things: priced it right, had it staged, pulled out the stops in using various marketing media, held open houses. The only weekends of no open house were on Christmas and New Year’s Day.Lots of interest....but no offers. It was beginning to look like the relocation company will buy the property from the (13 comments)
REALTORS are Project Managers for Buyer and Seller - 01/17/12 02:32 PM
REALTORS are Project ManagersWhenever we have a buyer or seller in contract, we put together a timeline of what will happen next, and share this and a list of action items with our clients.Essentially, we’ve become project managers of each transaction. And we put together our version of a Gantt Chart, perhaps in its simplest form like a calendar. Wikipedia describes Gantt Chart as
“A Gantt chart is a type ofbar chart, developed byHenry Gantt, that illustrates aproject schedule. Gantt charts illustrate the start and finish dates of the terminal elements and summary elements of aproject. Terminal elements and (34 comments)
Be the Glue Not Part of the Puzzle - 01/17/12 01:30 PM
This is a great analogy of our role as REALTORs. Not only do we put things together (resources, disclosures, etc) we also KEEP them together. In corporate life, we learned about the Gantt Chart every time we have a project. And there are a variety of styles (samples here) when we manage a project. John captures the essence of what we do.....another big ATTABOY for John :) Tell him so! Via John McCormack- Owner/Broker REALTOR, e-PRO (Albuquerque Homes Realty * www.AlbuquerqueHomes.com): Be the glue, not part of the puzzle!As a REALTOR® I feel my role in a transaction and in advocating for (1 comments)
"Expel the best" - How to Blow a Career with MLS Bloopers - 01/17/12 02:38 AM
Another delightful and hysterical collection of MLS bloopers. As funny as these may be, and as hard as we laugh at others' mistakes, we should be ever vigilant in avoiding making similar mistakes. Enjoy...then go see Gwen and give her an "attagirl" for this post. Via Gwen Banta (Sotheby's International Realty): Something may have been rotten in the State of Denmark, but the MLS isn’t smelling much better. Check out these stinkers and clinkers from the MLS and other real estate ads if you’re in the mood for a few giggles: Something Seems Amiss… “One moth incentive” (Do you wave wool sweaters (6 comments)
WHO DO YOU TRUST...and WHY SHOULD YOU TRUST ME? - 01/16/12 02:47 AM
Doug posted an excellent article about trust. This is definitely feature worthy --- enough of us have suggested this, and I surely hope more people will read it. I especially like his definition of the kinds of trust such as the assigned trust that is exemplified in the military and other dangerous professions where people have to trust each other with their lives. Really good reading. I'm disabling the comment feature -- y'all just have to go to Doug's post and tell him "Attaboy!" Via Doug Bullwinkel NMLS #281609 (Vitek Mortgage Group): WHO DO YOU TRUST...and WHY SHOULD YOU TRUST ME? TRUST is (0 comments)
How tenants cause your property to get a “C” in Sale-ability - 01/16/12 12:48 AM
How tenants cause your property to get a “C” in Sale-ability.Seller lists house with you. You’re ecstatic. It’s on a great location, just 4 houses from the beach. Seller has made a lot of improvements. Should be an easy sale, right?WRONG! There’s a tenant who doesn’t want to move. Your first task is to speak with the tenant, assess the situation, try to “make nice” to get the tenant’s cooperation as you get ready to put the house on the market. When you meet with them, they try to appeal to you to convince seller to let them stay because (23 comments)
BERKELEY CA Real Estate Sales 2011 over 2010: Looking for foreclosures? Very low inventory! - 01/15/12 11:17 PM
Berkeley CA Real estate sales 2011 compared to 2010: Trends for foreclosures and short salesBerkeley CA seems to hold it own, with very few distressed properties compared to some of the neighboring cities like Oakland CA and Alameda CA both of whom show an increase in distressed properties from 2010 to 2011.Distressed Properties (short sales and foreclosures)Whereas Berkeley’s distressed properties average less than 20% of total sales the last couple of years.
This chart shows the percent of bank owned properties (stripes) compared to regular sales (shaded) during each time period.
Median List and Sold PriceAnd in the spirit (4 comments)
Active Rain Community Guidelines – Respect! - 01/14/12 03:55 PM
As real estate professionals, we all do our part in elevating the profession in the public eye. By behaving in the most ethical and professional manner, we manage to accomplish this, bit by bit. Whether one is a real estate professional or not, participation on Active Rain is done -- or should be done --- with utmost respect for the community itself. This bears repeating. Via Kathleen Daniels, San Jose Short Sale Agent (San Jose Real Estate - 800-972-1822): Active Rain Community Guidelines – Respect! Respect the Active Rain Community Of all the ActiveRain Community Guidelines the following says it all (8 comments)
Diversity and multi-culturalism foster sensitivity and good business practices - 01/14/12 03:11 PM
Diversity and multi-culturalism foster sensitivity and good business practicesLiving in the Bay area of California gives us the opportunity to interact with so many nationalities and cultural origins. It becomes a challenge sometimes to know what behaviors are acceptable and what are not. Part of our business practice via diversity training is awareness of and respect for multi-cultural do's and don'ts. NAR (National Association of REALTORs) has a class called At Home With Diversity. It is a good idea to look into this, and add this knowledge to one's tool box of marketable and marketing skills. May I shake your hand?I (21 comments)
As of January 2012, the current number of distressed properties actively offered for sale is 55% of total. In a previous post comparing 2011 with 2010, distressed properties (short sales and foreclosures) rose from 52% in 2010 to 54% in 2011.
For people looking to make a deal, this may be a good thing since distressed properties generally sell for less than market value of regular sales. Looking for bank-owned properties I just (5 comments)
Case Study: Mortgage Broker tells Buyers Agent to “Stop wasting my time.” - 01/13/12 08:09 PM
Case Study: Mortgage Broker tells Buyers Agent to “Stop wasting my time.”Would you, in any professional position, say that to a potential source of referrals and income?Case Study: Buyer selected mortgage broker/lender who has helped a relative close several loans. This lender in turns refers the buyer to another REALTOR. But the buyer and that realtor didn’t click. So buyer finds another REALTOR.
New REALTOR-- who has never done business with this mortgage broker --- finds bank-owned property and gets buyer’s offer accepted. But mortgage broker didn’t order appraisal until nearly 2 weeks after the acceptance, waiting for the outcome (4 comments)
CrumbTracks: iPhone/iPod/iPad app to stay organized when seeing many real estate properties - 01/13/12 07:22 PM
CrumbTracks: iPhone/iPod/iPad app for organizing photos/videos/info during property searchIt’s described as “the first iPhone app that allows you to store, organize, annotate and share photos AND VIDEOS you take during your search for a new home!”According to CrumbTracks, this is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 3.1 or later. I usually print copies of the MLS listings that I show clients, and then ask them to make notes on what we see. This app could be a tremendous helps.In the “olden days”...When we lived in Orlando and were looking to buy a house, my REALTOR gave me a (11 comments)
Congratulations, Garrick Werdmuller for being one of the "40 under 40" mortgage professionals - 01/13/12 06:02 PM
Congratulations, Garrick Werdmuller!Garrick was recently named by National Mortgage Professional Magazine as one of their “40 under 40” --- their 40 most influential mortgage professionals under 40 years old.Garrick is one of us on Active Rain. You can find his profile hereI’ve enjoyed working with Garrick --- one of the first lenders I’ve used since I started my real estate career. Many times, when some of my buyers are stumped by the requirements of their chosen lenders, I’ve had to turn to Garrick for help. He’s always come through for all types of loans.This is why it’s great working with Garrick. (2 comments)
Teach your smart phone to TALK (yes, Droid, Blackberry and iPhone, too!) - 01/09/12 03:37 PM
Teach your smartphone to talk. Your smartphone just got smarter!Here’s another cool app -- and this one is available for Apple, Droid, Blackberry smart phones. I had iphone4 envy when the iphone4S came out with Siri. Watching the TV ads about how it works made me wish I had the later version.Then voila, here’s a new app. Woo-hoo! Go to Vlingo where you can “turn your words into action” Vlingo says “Tell your phone what to do! The Vlingo Virtual Assistant turns your words into action. Vlingo combines voice to text technology with its "intent engine" to help you quickly complete (12 comments)
Discovering new places by following one’s stomach --- Santana Row in San Jose - 01/09/12 02:55 PM
Discovering new places by following one’s stomach --- Santana Row in San JoseMy dad always told me, “The problem with you is that you live to eat, whereas we eat to live.”Well, Dad, how is that a problem? Gary and I have moved so often that one of our favorite things to do to discover every new city is to follow our stomach. At first we did it by buying the Entertainment Book specific to the city/area, and looking for the best possible deals. We thoroughly enjoyed dining our way in and around Orlando, Dallas, San Francisco, Oakland, Walnut Creek, etc (5 comments)
All Things Real Estate Roundup: Success in the New Year - 01/09/12 01:54 AM
Here's a great post from another one of my favorite bloggers who are so generous with their time and knowledge, and who willingly share with others so that we can all be good at our profession. When we're good, it reflects on the rest of us. So as Rebekah says, sit back and enjoy your cup of coffee/glass of wine. Tons of good information here! Via Rebekah Radice Social Media Marketing, Management & Strategies (Manager of Industry Engagement, Better Homes & Gardens RE): This weeks roundup of All Things Real Estate offers a mix of marketing ideas, social media strategies and professional development (6 comments)
Web Design - Inspiration Board - Craig's Clicks - 01/09/12 01:46 AM
I love Craig's blogs. IF you haven't had a chance to read them, or if you still haven't subscribed to his blogs, you should. So much to learn! Here's his latest. Thank goodness for reblogs. Via Craig Daniels - Technology Instructor/Project Consultant (located NYC - remote assistance everywhere! :): Beautifully designed web pages stand out miles above the sea of "my website looks like every other template website." You too can have a website in about an hour with pre-populated stock real estate articles and hard to use navigation, and absolutely way too much information blasting at you when you hit (2 comments)
CALLING MY OWN SHOTS! Plus a Few Others that the AR Gods Missed this Week – 010812 - 01/08/12 02:39 PM
In case you haven't visited Donne's series on calling her own shots, you should. Donne does an excellent job finding blogs that we may have missed but are worth reading --- okay, I must admit I love it when she mentions me :) Truly, it's worth it to check out her series. Here's her latest. Via Donne Knudsen CalState Realty Services (Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA): Well, this week there were so many really great posts here in the rain by some of my fave bloggers as well as some newbie bloggers that I’ve recently come across. First and (4 comments)
Oakland CA top 5 real estate stories in 2011 including surge in sales and prices - 01/06/12 05:46 PM
We always say real estate is local. So how do the top 5 real estate stories in 2011 look at the local level? I took a look in Oakland CA, specifically at detached single family residences (SFR) and compared them to 5 Top Real Estate Stories in 2011as blogged by Steve Harney) Interest rates remained at historic lows Sales are up over 2010 Contract cancellation rate surges Foreclosures were delayed Prices move up, then down Interest Rates remained at historic lows Mortgage-X has some of the best graphs to to show the historical trends. I checked rates for Oakland CA and (5 comments)
Oakland CA 2011: Short Sales and Bank-Owned Properties are 54% of total sales - 01/06/12 01:46 PM
Oakland CA Year End Report 2011: Short Sales and Bank-Owned PropertiesIt is essential to recognize the market trends in order to prepare buyers and sellers on what to expect. This is a year-end report on residential sales inOakland CA. People looking to buy in Oakland should not discount distressed properties which comprise the bigger share (54% in 2011) of the market.How does 2011 compare with 2010?Upward trend in distressed properties. It appears that in 2011, we had slightly more properties sold.
But it also shows an upward trend in the number of distressed properties (short sales and foreclosures) inching from (2 comments)
When someone trusts you to do a good job, do your best to prove you earned that trust. - 01/06/12 01:19 AM
When someone trusts you to do a good job, do your best to prove you earned that trust. There are so many episodes in my life that made a tremendous impression, but they all seem to point to what my parents showed me by example. It may sound corny to say my parents shaped my values, but it’s true. Trust is earned. When I was a little girl, my father took me and my brothers to show us his office. It was a place of wonder....and a source of so much temptation. Bottles of ink. Pencils. Erasers. Rubber bands. As someone (17 comments)
Take pictures with your smartphone and create a floor plan. Seriously? It's the Magic Plan - 01/05/12 11:57 PM
An APP to try out, to love....Click here for Sensopia What will you find? A Magic Plan. Just take pictures using your smartphone. And according to its website, “MagicPlan measures the size of the room, draws the floor plan and creates DXF file, PDF document, JPEG images and a web site with an interactive floor plan. According to its CEO: “MagicPlan enables anyone selling or renting a property to create a floor plan in minutes. This will change the real estate landscape.” (Sébastien Demers, CEO of Gooplex.com)Available on App Store. Sorry, Droid fans. Looks like at this time it's only available (28 comments)
Tenants sink the deal but “save” the buyer - 01/05/12 03:23 PM
Tenants can sink the deal but “save” the buyerMy buyers have been looking for months and waiting for an opportunity to buy a lakefront condo. They are so impressed by this complex -- lake front, amazing amenities, fabulous location. So they jumped at the chance to write an offer on a 2 bedroom 2 bath unit that became available. It helped that it’s a regular sale at a very good price, considering that many of the other units that were offered for sale in the building are short sales.We made an appointment to see the unit which showed very well. The (10 comments)
Alameda CA against second hand smoke. Smoke, and you get jailed/fined! - 01/05/12 02:20 PM
Alameda CA takes a strong position against smoking with new Second Hand Smoke OrdinanceOur island city of Alameda CA has taken a very strong stance against smoking.To protect Alameda residents and visitors from the health hazards of second hand tobacco smoke, the Alameda City Council adopted a Secondhand SmokeOrdinance. The majority of the provisions are effective January 2, 2012. Here’s Alameda’s Second Hand Smoke Ordinance and Fact Sheet. I have east coast friends whom I’ve invited to visit me in California. They expressed a concern that as smokers, they will be hard-pressed to find places where they can smoke. It (4 comments)
8 Reasons why your house won't sell! - 01/05/12 12:47 PM
It is an ongoing challenge to explain and illustrate to sellers why their property won't sell. No matter how many times they have been told, they don't believe it. So we continue down this path. Tell them, tell them and tell them again. Alan May has done a phenomenal job with this topic, and it does deserve to be shared. Via Alan May, Coldwell Banker Realtor® Evanston, Illinois Homes for Sale (Evanston Condos & Evanston Single Family Homes): Karl Hess was good enough to remind me that it's been more than a year since I published my perennial favourite blog. So I'm (7 comments)
Why A REALTOR's "Years On The Job" Means So Little To Somebody Who Needs To Sell A Home - 01/05/12 02:25 AM
Does having more years experience mean that agent is better than someone who has a lot less? Joe Manausa from Tallahassee FL (where I lived for several years --- the beautiful capital of Florida) was curious enough to check it out for himself. Look what he found! Seasoned agents have the experience. Newbies have the intensity. So who wins? I knew someone who had worked several jobs in different companies, and changed industries more than once. His friend chided him for "not keeping a job". His response is that he has more experience doing all kinds of things for different companies (7 comments)
Yup... Still Asking For Your Help.....I Promise... I Won't Ask Again.... Pleeeaaaassseee!!! - 01/05/12 01:59 AM
Help fellow Active Rainer Stacey win her iPad. Help drive traffic to her site. Just click on hber link http://www.imsd.net/ref/staceysmith and you're done. Easy as pie. You make someone happy. And you've made another friend. Via Stacey Smith - Laguna Beach Real Estate Specialist (CA Coastal Estates, Inc.): Yup... Still Asking For Your Help.....I Promise... I Won't Ask Again.... Pleeeaaaassseee!!!
So now that I caught your attention with a catchy title....I'm glad you visited my blog! I do need your help though! The help of all my fellow activerainers would be sooo much appreciated! Right now I am involved in a contest (0 comments)
Top 5 real estate stories in 2011 nationally and in Alameda CA - 01/03/12 04:35 PM
These are the 5 Top Real Estate Stories in 2011 (as blogged by Steve Harney). Applying these to the local market and to what local clients are experiencing in Alameda CA,I found that indeed, they are true at the local level. Interest Rates remained at historic lows Mortgage-X has some of the best graphs to to show the historical trends. I checked rates for Alameda CA and found this. The highest rate is for a 30-year mortgage at 4.375% with 1 discount point. The lowest rate is for a 15-year mortgage 2.875% with .625 discount point.
Sales up over (5 comments)
What Were Your Top 10 ActiveRain Posts of 2011? - 01/03/12 02:44 PM
David Popoff asked a real good question -- and one we should continue asking ourselves to see which action steps we take that generate the most and best results. Just like people ask if we should spend more time on online versus print advertising, so should we ask what results we generate when we blog geared to Active Rainers, or to target audience of potential and active clients. Via David Popoff, Lower Fairfield County, CT. (William Raveis Real Estate, Darien, Ct): What Were Your Top 10 ActiveRain Posts of 2011? To become a better blogger and to increase my presence on the (4 comments)
Top Ten ActiveRain Posts 2011: who is the target audience? Measure by number of comments and by number of views - 01/03/12 01:13 PM
In any type of business, it is a necessity to set the metrics -- parameters to gauge success, efficiency and results.So when David Popoff asked What Were Your Top 10 ActiveRain Posts of 2011? ... I asked myself: who is my target audience? Active and potentital clients? Or Active Rain members for future referrals? Should I measure by the number of comments, or by the number of views? Top 10 posts by number of comments Measuring by number of comments: should our own comments should even be counted? If we respond to each comment one at a time instead of grouping (8 comments)
Alameda CA Short sales and Foreclosures: Year End Report 2011 compared to 2010 - 01/02/12 03:48 PM
Year End Report 2011 Distressed Properties in Alameda CAIt is essential to recognize the market trends in order to prepare buyers and sellers on what to expect. This is a year-end report on residential sales in Alameda, CA.How does 2011 compare with 2010?Upward trend in distressed properties. It appears that in 2011, we had slightly more properties sold, but it also shows an upward trend in the number of distressed properties (short sales and foreclosures) inching from 93 or 21% of total in 2010, to 139 or 30% of total in 2011. Short sales are closing escrow. What is encouraging is (3 comments)
Friends and Family: the guiding principle is LOVE. - 01/01/12 11:48 PM
Friends and Family: the guiding principle is LOVE.Starting the year with thoughts of what makes me happy...and it always comes back to moments spent with friends and family. Appreciating this fact is driving me to make it a lifetime resolution to spend more quality time with my treasures: friends and family.
Memories ---Home by midnight on New Year’s Eve. My siblings and I, for as long as we lived at home, and no matter what we were doing, always made it a point to be home by the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve. It was never mandated, but (9 comments)
Clear out the old energy of 2011. Refresh your home with positive Chi by giving it a deep cleaning. Get into as many nooks and crannies that you can to clear out any stuck or stagnant energy. DONE! Purchase fresh flowers and plants to help stimulate and liven the energy within your home. DONE! I have Money Trees, and I'll cut some sprigs of lemon from our backyard. Add photos (4 comments)
A day in the life... - 01/01/12 03:27 PM
Alan wrote a fabulous post and I jutd had to share. If walls could talk, this is probably what one will hear. I like to think that when a house changes hands, that the love and laughter from one family moves to the next. Here's wishing all of us love, peace, joy and prosperity in 2012 and beyond. HAPPY NEW YEAR, and God bless us every one! Via Alan May, Coldwell Banker Realtor® Evanston, Illinois Homes for Sale (Evanston Condos & Evanston Single Family Homes): Day 1: The Realtor came over today, and he brought a photographer with him. First they moved (2 comments)
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