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
Staff Sgt. Sal Giunta Medal of Honor Recipient and Hero - 05/30/11 11:04 AM
If you get a chance to see an interview with this young Iowan, take a few minutes to listen to his story. He is a Medal of Honor winner, and a very-self effacing young man who will do more to assist our men and women in the current conflicts than anyone else I can think of. He is leaving the military now, and one of the reasons he cited is that he can no longer be one of his group of guys who served together. He is now treated with "special" services....jets, private suites, etc. I was quite impressed with his (8 comments)
Thank You to the men and women who gave their lives in service to our country. Memorial Day 2011 - 05/30/11 10:22 AM
Judi's post is very appropriate for this holiday of remembrance. We need to thank our armed forces and local heroes AND their families who have given more than their fair share to their countrymen and women. Thanks, Judi, and you can go over and thank Judi yourself for a well-written post. Have a great holiday. Via Judi Barrett~Integrity Real Estate Services~Idabel, Oklahoma: Thank You to the men and women who gave their lives in service to our country. Memorial Day 2011. We who are alive and enjoying the benefits of living in this great country this Memorial Day in 2011, all 308,745,538 (3 comments)
There's A New Group in Town - Check It Out - 05/28/11 09:29 PM
One of the newest groups on ActiveRain is "Cool Stuff" According to Stewart Penn it is a casual forum to chat about interesting and unusual ideas, products and out-of-the-ordinary things. When I joined last evening there were three posts. I think they are up to six now. Stewart is discussing homes, cars, parking structures and this website thepartsbiz.com. Which I must admit was pretty cool. If you find something that is new, cool or just bizarre, this might be the best place to post it. Meanwhile, I will just continue to watch for the newest "Cool Stuff". Have a great weekend. (13 comments)
Images, Local Area Photos Of Your Zip Codes, All Around The Real Estate You List, Peddle, Sell. - 05/27/11 06:46 PM
Andrew has the right idea here. Take your camera, or your smart phone with you everywhere. You never know when you might stumble on something spectacular to shoot. My camera takes video, too. And, if yours doesn't, make sure the next one does. Via Andrew Mooers | Northern Maine Real Estate / Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY): You take a picture, capture an image, upload a photo to Flickr or a slew of other platforms for all to see. Just point and shoot done right? Heck no. You get to see what camera the photographer was wearing in his holster and as you (1 comments)
Disaster Assistance in Minnesota - 05/27/11 06:11 PM
While the recent storms and tornadoes have not had a great impact on our particular area, they have in the past. And, after watching the recent victims of the North Minneapolis tornado, I certainly counted my blessings. If you are not aware, HUD has issued some disaster relief for quite a few counties in Minnesota recently. If you need more information, I can direct you to my website for assistance. It could be a really stormy summer from all indications, give the cold air that continues to hang around. Stay safe. Here is the Directive:
Bullseye on Missouri: Threatening weather patterns - 05/26/11 10:46 PM
Liz Lockhardt has put up some very sobering numbers on the effects of the latest tornado outbreaks in Missouri. She also talks about the earthquake zone now in her area. Read her last couple of posts, and think about how this would affect you. Thanks, Liz. Comment on her blog, please. Via Liz Lockhart,GRI, Cape Girardeau Real Estate (CENTURY 21 Key Realty, Cape Girardeau, MO): Just three days after the F5 tornado brought death and destruction to Joplin, Missouri, parts of Missouri were under tornado warnings much of yesterday (Wednesday, May 25) and last night. Many businesses, including some at the mall, shut (2 comments)
Memorial Day Observances - Past and Present - 05/26/11 10:09 PM
Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day because family members would decorate the graves of those who had given their lives in the nation's service and the holiday was originally conceived to honor and remember those veterans. Eventually, the holiday expanded to include all the dead in each family, and often you will see cemeteries filled with urns, plants, balloons, toys and other remembrances of those families upon the graves of their loved ones. This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Civil War and many say that Memorial Day got its start in the late 1860s when women's groups in the South were (6 comments)
REJECTED FOR HAMP MODIFICATION DUE TO THE NET PRESENT VALUE RESULT? - 05/25/11 02:33 PM
HUD and the U.S. Department of the Treasure are on to something here. They don't trust the loan servicers' calculations. What a surprise. Thanks, Mike for the gread tips you have presented here. Now, go thank Mike for his great blog post! Via Mike West (Heritage Oak Properties): REJECTED FOR HAMP MODIFICATION DUE TO THE NET PRESENT VALUE RESULT? Have you been turned down for a HAMP (Housing Affordable Modification Program) loan modification because of the Net Present Value result calculated by your loan servicer? The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Department of Housing and Urban Development do not seem to (0 comments)
TOP SECRET SHORT SALE APPROVAL DOCUMENTATION LEAKED - READ IT HERE - 05/24/11 10:43 PM
We know many secrets that the lenders and investors don't think we know. And, we go the extra mile to help you through the short sale maze. And those of us "in the trenches" work to keep each other informed. Thanks, Richard. And, please direct your comments to Richard's blog. Via Richard Zaretsky, Florida Real Estate Attorney (Richard P. Zaretsky P.A. - Bd Certified Real Estate Attorney): It is not too often we "in the trenches" of short sale negotiations get to understand why lenders act the way they do through "behind the scenes" documentation. However a couple of months ago we did (1 comments)
Question to the Elk River Council...Will You Support the Local Community? - 05/23/11 10:06 PM
The Elk River Area Arts Alliance has made a conscious decision to support downtown restaurants and businesses at this year's ArtSoup community arts festival. Food at the June 18 event will be limited to local fare, and these vendors have had booth fees waived and told they wouldn't have to worry about out-of-town competition. Elk River Mayor John Dietz called giving local food merchants a break in difficult economic times admirable, but others had reservations contributing to the cause knowing this was how things were being handled. The matter will be brought to the EDA on May 13, and the council (5 comments)
May is Military Appreciation Month AND Mental Health Awareness Month - 05/22/11 04:20 PM
Judi Barrett, an Ambassador on Active Rain, has made a request that we all donate to the Wounded Warrior Project. I find this to be a very commendable effort given the facts. One in five returning veterans from Afganistan or Iraq suffers from major depression or PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) would like to highlight post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and how it affects the lives of those who served in the current conflictsRead more: http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/#ixzz1N79K6CMW In addition to the more than 40,000 service members who have been injured in the current conflicts, more than 300,000 men and women are (7 comments)
Pay It Forward By Donating To The Wounded Warrior Project - 05/22/11 04:01 PM
Judi Barrett, what can I say...she is an Ambassador. But she is also a woman with a lot of heart. This is a cause we all should be endorsing. If you can, please make a donation. Via Judi Barrett~Integrity Real Estate Services~Idabel, Oklahoma: Pay It Forward By Donating To The Wounded Warrior Project
Memorial Day is almost upon us. What better time to make a donation to help those that have been wounded in their service to our country. I just made my donation and I hope that you will consider making one. Do you have loved ones that have come home (1 comments)
Don't Argue With Your Crazy Aunt In The Attic - 05/22/11 03:52 PM
Gary makes perfect sense here for dealing with the crazies in your life. And, when you are a broker, you have the crazy banks, the crazy sellers, the crazy buyers, the crazy agents, you get the pictures....it goes on and on. Via Gary Woltal - Assoc. Broker REALTOR® SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty): A comment I received talking about interactions with people reminded me of good advice with some, Don't Argue With Your Crazy Aunt In The Attic. Mainly dealing with people who get irrational on you. What they are saying makes no sense to you. I wouldn't in general (1 comments)
Funny What Happens When You Take my Advice - 05/22/11 03:45 PM
It might sound strange to hear that a seller might postpone an appointment for something this trivial, but it does happen. Read the outcome, and you will see that short of a house fire, let the buyers in! Via J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY: I got a call this morning from a seller client who had two showings scheduled for the day. She was concerned she might have to postpone the appointments. It seemed that she discovered an ant colony outside a window of her condo, and was concerned that the development might repel the prospective buyers. (1 comments)
When does the creepy, crawly go away? - 05/22/11 03:21 PM
Reminder, this is tick season in Minnesota. And, Liz Lockhart's blog brings that home. As I mentioned in the comments, even after you have checked your clothes and body, vacuum the vehicle, too. Sometimes, they will stay in a vehicle for weeks. Trust me. Via Liz Lockhart,GRI, Cape Girardeau Real Estate (CENTURY 21 Key Realty, Cape Girardeau, MO): I needed to do a property check on a listing of mine, a cabin on a remote three-acre parcel in a neighboring, rural county. What a lovely day it was to take a drive out to the country--temperatures in the 70s, sunny with a light breeze, the (0 comments)
Congratulations to the 2011 Graduating Classes of Elk River and Spectrum! - 05/21/11 03:34 PM
Graduation is just around the corner, and with the busy Memorial Day weekend coming up, I just wanted to throw my congratulations to the graduating classes in Elk River and Spectrum. It isn't easy getting through high school these days. And, it takes parents, teachers, guidance counselors, mentors and adminstration to help kids get what they need to succeed in the world. It also takes those same people to help kids stay the course and not get distracted by drugs, popularity contests and just plain bullies. We had bullies in high school, too. But, at least we didn't have to try (4 comments)
Zimmerman Area Farmers Market Will Open May 24, 2010 - 05/20/11 06:07 PM
While most Farmers Markets will open in June, the Farmers Market in Zimmerman will open May 24, 2010. The farmers market in Zimmerman prides itself on allowing only locally grown products.That means that even baked goods like banana bread must contain something locally grown or produced, such as the eggs in the bread.People can expect more than banana bread, as all sorts of baked and canned goods will be on hand for purchase.People can also expect fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, eggs, honey and maple syrup.The Zimmerman farmers market opens May 24 from 3-6:30 p.m. so people can purchase bedding plants (5 comments)
One of Elk River's Longest Standing Icons is on the 10 Most Endangered Historic Sites in Minnesota - 05/19/11 06:21 PM
The water tower on Jackson Avenue in Elk River has been selected as one of the 10 Most Endangered Historic Sites in Minnesota. The landmark has been part of this community for 91 years. The designation was officially announced Thursday, May 12 by the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota during its (Anti) Wrecking Ball in Minneapolis. This designation will likely give the water tower more support for its preservation. The tower is owned by by Elk River Municipal Utilities. The water tower was built in 1920 as one of the first components of the municipal water system in Elk River. It is (6 comments)
Holly Mickelson is a FINALIST in the Don't Drive Distracted Contest - Vote NOW! - 05/18/11 06:02 PM
Local girl finalist in distracted driving ad contest Holly Mickelson, a student at Spectrum High School has been named one of five final entries in the Minnesota Department of Public Safety's AAA Don't Drive Distracted, Teens! TV Commercial Challenge. Now it's Minnesota's time to vote. Minnesotans are asked to view and select the best spot through May 24 at www.rockthebelt.org, and click on the Don't Drive Distracted, Teens! link.
More than 90 Minnesota teenagers produced 30-second TV public service announcements for the contest to educate peers about the dangers of driver distraction. The finalists are competing for a (5 comments)
Dumbing it Down... to 10 Cups of Coffee - 05/17/11 05:34 PM
Melinda Peterson makes such a great point here. They ram these extra fees down our throats, calling it this or that. I really think that fees should be much larger than they already are to take the "wanna-bes" out of the equation. But, please don't tell me you are starting a Realtor Party. Via Melinda Peterson - Grants Pass Southern Oregon Homes For Sale (Real Estate Cafe LLC): Dumbing it Down... to 10 Cups of Coffee. After attending NAR's 2011 Mid-Year Legislative Conference, and sitting in the room with many intelligent agents from all over the country, I was a bit dumbfounded. Not by (5 comments)
Cats Can Be Spayed or Neutered With Low Cost Programs - 05/16/11 10:12 PM
I am not a big fan of cats. That said, I want to urge all cat owners to be responsible and make sure that their pets are free from harm not only from the usual ailments, but from their ability to procreate at will if they are left to roam free. Cats are now usually domesticated animals, and their owners should take responsibility for their vaccinations, checkups, neutering or spaying. Sometimes, as I have found in my normal course of working not only with clients, but with foreclosures, pets are left to their own devices. Since May is National Pet Moth, (6 comments)
Say Goodbye to the Laptop... - 05/15/11 07:00 PM
There was a time in my office when some agents envied me. I had a laptop. I could take my computer from home to office to home. Well, that was then. This is now. The laptop has all but given the death sentence just as the home computer "station" has. Now, it is the touch screen. All hail the touch screen. In just over a year. manufacturers are saying that the tablet will eclipse the sales of the laptop based on convenience alone. Microsoft saw its largest dip in stock prices last month in two years based on declining software sales. (9 comments)
Support Our Local Teen, Holly Mickelson! - 05/14/11 10:09 AM
We have some local talent in the DPS contest to find a new PSA for teens driving while distracted. More than 90 Minnesota teenagers produced 30-second TV public service announcements for the contest to educate peers about the dangers of driver distraction. The finalists are competing for a $1,000 first-place prize and a broadcast premiere of their spot to air during the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards Aug. 28. There is a $600 prize for second place and $400 prize for third. Prizes are donated by AAA. Holly Mickelson, a student at Spectrum High School has been named one of five (2 comments)
Minnesota's 2011 Fishing Opener - 05/13/11 11:01 AM
Well, it is nearly here. I, for one, am so ready to get out on the water and test my walleye skills. There was ice fishing, of course. But, there is nothing like being on the boat with my dad and my son on the open water no matter what the weather. What is the fishing opener? Minnesota anglers consider the fishing opener -- when walleye, northern pike, and sauger become legal game on the state's inland waters -- one of the defining moments of their year. Did you know? Minnesota's general fishing opener is the Saturday two weeks before Memorial (4 comments)
Planting a Garden This Year...First Try? Try these... - 05/12/11 05:13 PM
I have heard of "community gardens" quite a bit this year. The ones in St. Michael are sold out and were long before you got your gardening catalogs this year. With so many people out of work, many are turning to their own soil to get something to work on and EAT. Some of my clients have acres, and some have nowhere to grow some vegetables (if you only look at the surface. But, with a little ingenuity, and some easy things to plant and take care of...you, too, can have some great veggies for the salad. If you have HOAs (3 comments)
Our House is a Very, Very Fine House - 05/11/11 04:53 PM
Do you remember that song? It came to mind recently on a listing appointment.... Our House is a very, very fine house..... except we have changed the furnace filters for three years, and, we patched that leak in the sink under the vanity with some caulk and some duct tape, and we had a leak in the ceiling, but we just used some spray primer over it...and added some ground up peanuts to make it look like the other popcorn, and we will fill in all the brown patches in the lawn with seed now that it's nice out again, and (7 comments)
Jr. High Worker Charged With Selling Cocaine Full story: WCCO A junior high employee has been charged with possessing and selling cocaine. John Joseph Daugherty, 59, of Elk River, Minn., was arrested last week. You can check out the story for yourself. It is a sad state of affairs when the source of drugs which are always a potential for kids turns out to be in the school itself. We do have a great school district, and this "bad apple" will no longer be in contact with our kids. When you (7 comments)
Taste of Elk River, Elk River Minnesota - 05/09/11 09:48 AM
Elk River, Minnesota is starting off the summer with its sixth annual Taste of Elk River! The event is sponsored by the Elk River Rotary, which has been responsible for restoring the Handke Stadium, adding a freezer at CAER and building a trail head in downtown Elk River The event will be held 5 to 9 p.m. Thursday, May 12, at Lions Park in Elk River. The Rotary hopes this event will allow the club to pay off the city of Elk River for the trail head project. Because the event includes wine, please limit your attendance to adults only. Tickets are $25 (5 comments)
Thanks, Patrick, Jane and Gwen! - 05/08/11 03:19 PM
All of this material came from Patrick Martin and Jane Peters via Gwen Banta So, if you want to thank someone, go to their blogs (although Patrick hasn't posted anything yet, you can still email him).
You'd Think Someone Would Have Noticed "House with invisible walls" (Agent with invisible commission check.) "Built with car class" (A shop teacher with ambition?) "Your clients will tank you" (No more than you just tanked yourself...) "Steam and fry sauna" (What's fried is your career, friend.) "Mothers can be showing after noon only" (Agents should be drinking after five only.) Don't Tempt Me! "No (8 comments)
Google U: A Little Keyword Help - 05/07/11 05:32 PM
Jennifer, has done all the hard work, now you and I get to reap the rewards. She has put a lot of effort into this, so please comment on her post. Happy Mother's Day to all you hardworking women! Take some time to enjoy it. Via Jennifer Prestwich Your Castle RE Colorado (Henderson, CO, Brighton, Broomfield, Westminster et al.): Google U: A Little Keyword Help I am not an internet Guru, nor do I play one on TV. That is why I get so excited when I learn an easy trick that I can share! My RE Coach shared a little trick (2 comments)
If You Ever Have to Fend Off an Attacker...This Could Be Helpful! - 05/07/11 05:10 PM
Most of us go about our business not worrying about being assaulted. Women, sometimes, are victims of an unprovoked attack and can be completely surprised by someone they "thought they knew." Before this happens to you, please read the following and see if it is something that you could do in a life-threatening situation. It is important first of all to know that you can do it. And then to practice it until it becomes something you can feel confident doing. First of all, you need to act immediately upon feeling threatened. Better to get them before they get you. So, (6 comments)
Once we were young. - 05/06/11 11:31 PM
I certainly know how Alan feels. It seems like just yesterday (literally) when I was the cutting edge. And, I don't like not being thought of as the "older generation". Not one little bit. But, as I move into the golden years, I will leave you with his thoughts..... Via Alan May, Coldwell Banker Evanston, Illinois Realtor® (Chicago's Northern Suburbs): Maybe it's just me. Or maybe it's not... but it seems to me that lately, my buyers have been getting younger and younger. I'm grateful that Generation Y (I think that's what they're called) is comfortable using a geezer like me, to (2 comments)
For Sale By Owner, Part 1 - 05/05/11 06:17 PM
When you are selling your own home, remember that you are doing the marketing, selling, negotating (usually with an experienced agent), and securing the property to show. The first thing to consider is: Is your home show-ready? Don't put an ad in the paper or a sign on the lawn until you have the home ready to show. Once it is clean, decluttered and ready for pictures, take those first. Then, be ready to upload them to Craigslist or wherever you will market them. When you are cleaning, remember that your clean and other people's perception of clean might be two different (5 comments)
Wordless Wednesday - Who knew the Souderton Police had a sense of humor? - 05/04/11 10:38 PM
I really thought police humor had gone by the boards with all the tax cuts, but this one is a keeper. And, I hope it brings a smile to your face today, too. And check out the first two commenters. They look like identical twins and work in the same office! Via The Scott Loper Team Lansdale & Harleysville PA Homes (RE/MAX Realty Group - Harleysville & Conshohocken PA):
Well you can't say you weren't warned....
Contact Scott Loper, Associate Broker, Realtor®, RE/MAX Realty Group at 215-513-1333 for help buying or selling a home in Lansdale, Harleysville, Hatfield, Souderton, (4 comments)
May is Bike Safety Month! Be Careful Out There. - 05/03/11 09:46 AM
May is Bike Safety month. Here are some tips to make you and your loved ones safer when riding down the street or down the parkway. Five Steps to Riding Better 1. Follow the Rules of the Road · Ride with traffic and obey the same laws as motorists. · Use the rightmost lane that heads in the direction that you are traveling. · Obey all traffic control devices, such as stop signs, lights and lane markings. · Always look back and use hand and arm signals to indicate your intention to stop, merge or turn. 2. Be Visible · Ride (6 comments)
The War is Still Raging.....Buyers are Just Battling a Whole Different Opponent Now! - 05/02/11 07:12 PM
Donne has a great point here, and I should also thank Carla Muss-Jacobs, and whomever she got the idea from. But, this is must reading for buyers. And, I hope that the buyers I work with take this as gospel. It is long, but worth the read. Via Donne Knudsen NMLS#249822, DRE#01364050 Cobalt Financial Corp. (Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA): I recently came across, Waging War . . . Real Estate Deals Where No One Wins! by Carla Muss-Jacobs. Carla describes some of her more recent transactions as "war-like" and her buyers as having the propensity of "ripping the sellers' flesh off". It kind (1 comments)
Baby Websites for New Parents. - 05/02/11 03:15 PM
Here are some great websites to hand over to your new parents....the ones you just sold the house to! BabyCenter.com Sign up for the weekly newsletter, and you will get an e-mail describing the development stage you are in from pregnancy to toddler stage. Pretty cool. And you can find informaqtion on children's health and coupons, CoolMomPicks.com Features new products that you won't find at Target or WalMart and has a plethora of Mother's Day gifts, shower gifts and ideas, and safe toys. Parenting.blogs.nyTimes.com Handling all kinds of issues from colic to bedwetting to saying goodbye at the door. Pretty smart advice from people who have been (4 comments)
Otsego Spring Cleanup Days Planned for May, 2011 - 05/01/11 01:46 PM
Residents of Otsego will be able to pick up a voucher to get rid of unwanted items that the landfill won't take during the week of May 2-7th.Metro Applicance Recycling is offered reduced fees for the second year to Otsego residents to get rid of electronics, tires and air conditioners with the voucher. Items accepted during clean up week are Major appliances - $10 each Air Conditioners - $10 each Fluorescent light bulbs - 45 cents to $1.35 Televisions, electronics and computers including towers, monitors and printers - 30 cents per pound Tires with rims $8 each and tires without rims (3 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.