realtor: It's Not Membership, It's Ownership If You Want The Good Life You Seek - 07/16/17 12:23 PM
I'm just thinking out loud again, brainstorming ideas on how to get more out of my time in ActiveRain, provoked by recent members posting about canceling their accounts ("because AR doesn't work") and or weighing their options on to remain a Free vs. Paid account holder.
I suppose I'm letting you in on the lecture I gave myself as I evaluated how I spend my time in The Rain. That's when it occurred to me, in order to get more from ActiveRain, I need to give more to ActiveRain first. It's the same advice I give my Business Alliance Group members owners; I can't show up wanting, … (36 comments)

realtor: Open Letter To The Student: Keeping it Friendly, Keeping it Real... - 07/08/17 09:52 PM
"Welcome to Real Estate, Welcome to ActiveRain". 
Keeping it Friendly, Keeping it Real...
That was how I greeted our "spectator-commentator" and new arrival to ActiveRain. Then my typical 2-4 sentence comment on his third blog post turned into a blog of my own, (Ever have that happen)? 
A student, not yet licensed was lamenting on how it was a shame that we need to be told to provide "good customer service" via the Agency Agreement Disclosure that lays out our Fiduciary Duty. I agreed with his point in spirit, that it is a shame some need this as an actual governor and we all need to sign … (31 comments)

realtor: FAQ #7: What Is The MLS (Multiple Listing Service) in San Diego, CA - 06/26/17 10:21 PM
Some of the best advice my trainers and coaches ever gave me is:
Never use in inside language on the outside world.
My friend Joe found that out when he assumed everybody knew what the MLS was and never mentioned it during a listing presentation, he assumed they knew.
He lost the listing!
He lost it because the other agent the couple interviewed told them about how he'd broadcast their home to every agent in the area and cooperating areas too. Joe was in shock, "all that the MLS?!?" Joe presumed they knew he'd "of course" be posting their home their, so he … (1 comments)

realtor: Working By Referral and Running Our Business Like Business - 06/26/17 09:12 PM
Working By Referral
Why I Run My Business This Way
Why I Recommend It To Other Agents
There are two categories of agents in our industry: 
1. Relational: they value relationships as more important than transactions. They put the client's needs ahead of their own and think long-term.
2. Transactional: it's all about them and the commission. They find clients, close the escrow and move on, poof! they vanish-short sighted.
I believe our clients deserve better from us. They are making the largest purchase, sale or investment of their personal lives, we owe them what a family doctor or dentist owes their patients: Competence & Character and … (11 comments)

realtor: Hooray! The Seller Said Yes! Now, Tell The Buyer No, No , NO! - 06/24/17 07:33 PM
You just got your offer accepted, congratulations!
Now get ready for the No, No, No's of Escrows!
Here's what Buyer's should not do after an offer is accepted.
NO FINANCIAL SECRETS! Secrets kill deals, because what you do not tell me or your lender will be discovered by Underwriting or Title ie. alimony, liens, bankruptcy, previous foreclosures and short sales, child support, etc. PLEASE, no secrets: now is the time for full disclosure to your Realtor & Lender so we can help you and not be blindsided. In some cases you'll need to talk to your CPA or attorney. Disclose all debits: loans, HELOCs, … (12 comments)

realtor: Smart Tips For The San Diego, CA Home Sellers (part 1) - 06/24/17 07:31 AM
Smart Tips For The San Diego, CA  ANY Home Sellers
Many sellers have the impression that in order to sell a home, you just have to list it, especially since it's been a seller's market in most areas of CA since Q4 of 2011. While listing on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) is certainly part of the process, there’s quite a bit of preparation to undertake before your home’s listing goes “live” on the MLS.
Here are the steps to take when you’re thinking of selling your home. Selling is an emotional process, whether you’ve lived in the home for two years or 20 years. In … (8 comments)

realtor: FAQ #5: What Can I do To Make Sure My home Sells for "Top Dollar"? - 06/12/17 04:36 PM
I want top dollar for my home, how do I get it?
 Top Dollar is what the market is willing to pay; that varies from market to market and ultimately is up to the market, not the seller nor the agent. But, you do take steps necessary to ensure best results, leave nothing to chance.
So, what sells a home 99% of the time, more than ANYTHING else? You're going to hate my answer, because everything I share beyond this first tip, constitutes the remaining 1%. Which is to say, not much else matters:
The answer is simple: Be Properly Priced. That's it! It's price! All … (7 comments)

realtor: FAQ #4: How Do I prepare To Buy A Home? - 06/11/17 09:02 PM
FAQ #4: How Do I prepare To Buy A Home?
Would it surprise you to learn that this is a question asked by repeat buyers almost as often as first time buyers? How Do I prepare To Buy A Home? Because it's been 5-14 years since they did or because this is in fact, their first time buying a home. The market is changing every 3-6 months, so whatever your experience last purchase, I guarantee you it will be quite different this go around; new buyers need not worry, they have no preconceived notions.
The average First Time Buyer is 31 years of age while the … (3 comments)

realtor: FAQ #2: Wire Fraud! - 06/06/17 02:33 PM
FAQ: Do you take checks?
FAQ: What is Wire Fraud?
Traditionally, when buyers makes an offer, they include an Earnest Money Deposit or "good faith" deposit to be held by Escrow until they either close escrow and apply it towards the purchase price or cancel and it's refunded (in some, but not all cases). Buyers also send monies at the closing of escrow to pay the balance due, loan or not.
Buyers often ask if they can give me a check to deliver to escrow. "No. We do not handle money at all anymore, where in years past we did." Today we expect all … (3 comments)

realtor: FAQ #1: Why Work With A Real Estate Agent? - 06/05/17 10:09 PM
I'm often asked why should I work with an agent, why not just buy the house from the listing agent? 
Why not just sell my house on  my own and save the commission?
I first of all recommend you work with a Realtor over an real estate agent and I'll share why in a future FAQ post.
I'll share with you my Top 5 answers to those questions:
Representation: the other agent's priority is the client they represent, not you. The listing agent is loyal to the seller, investor, bank (REO) or developer (new construction). The Guide: you have bought and sold homes in your lifetime as … (4 comments)

realtor: Podcast Episode#096: Seller Financing and No $ Down Investing - 05/30/17 07:44 AM
Episode #96 of the Mail-Right
Real Estate Agent Podcast 
Seller Financing and No $ Down Investing???
Whitney Nicely is a fired up Millennial getting it done!
Whitney Nicely went from no investments (or strategies) to selling 19 houses, 19 apartment units and 7 lots of land in less than three years, creating mailbox money and financial stability.
What many say can't be done these days or are too afraid to try; Whitney travels the United States speaking on stages, teaching her simple strategies, and meeting with other successful real estate investors- and still buying houses the way she teaches others.
Since 2016, Whitney has led and trained hundreds of future real … (2 comments)

realtor: Podcast #094: Tom Cafarella is Investing In Distress! - 05/27/17 12:43 PM
Episode #94 of the Mail-Right
Real Estate Agent Podcast 
Tom Cafarella 
Tom Cafarella really comes across like a relational guy and Ocean City Development LLC is the kind of company you’d want to partner with as a real estate agent. When you have a client who's situation just can't get resolved by traditional real estate re-sale, refer it to Tom, get a fair offer, make money on the sale and then list it for him when they bring it back to the market. It’s a great win-win-win-win! The seller gets a quick, clean deal that they may not get from the retail public, the agent gets 2 deals, Tom’s crew takes an … (1 comments)

realtor: Podcast #92: Matthew Miale The RE Profet: Net vs. Gross - 05/27/17 12:29 PM
Episode #92 of the Mail-Right
Real Estate Agent Podcast 
Matthew Miale is a Keller Williams Top Producer and the founder of which is a software APP designed to help you work within your budget, pay your taxes with ease and even plan for retirement…(if you don’t , who will)?
Watch the Podcast here:
We discuss being bottom-line focused vs. top of the line celebrated. There is a huge difference between Gross Profits and Net Profits and having a budget. Being debt-free vs. going bankrupt when you receive your #1 in Production Awards (yes, it happens). Check out this important discussion with Matt Miale, The RE Prophet!Matthew Miale Phone: 860-539-2255 Mobile: 860-539-2255 Office: 860-313-0700 and … (0 comments)

realtor: Before and After: An ActiveRain Exercise in Editing - 05/21/17 07:55 AM
Photo editing is definitely a skill-set I'm self taught in as it became necessary to improve the quality of my listing photos, before I could afford a professional photographer. I used to take all my own photos and was very careful to edit them prior to posting them, because my clients were going to see them and my target market was going to be marketed by them.
It drives me bonkers when I see bad photos in the MLS:
Bad light, messy backgrounds, improper crops, photographer in the reflection of the mirror. There are agents that literally upload their raw cell phone photos and think "that's … (11 comments)

realtor: 2,000 Kitchen Tables - 05/15/17 06:07 AM
Sitting Down At Over 2,000 Tables 
Facing often two opposite-personalities, yet both making a decision.
I've been in sales for over 30 years. I've attended college courses, read hundreds of sales books, taken many years of sales trainings and continuing education and even worked with business coaches. But none of that is unique. Experienced, loyal, organized, good communicator, great negotiator, skilled problem solver; all true, none of it unique.
What is a USP? What is your USP? A USP is your Unique Selling Proposition; those qualities, tools, strategies or guaranteed results you offer that none can duplicate. Better yet, your USP's are your stories, those … (9 comments)

realtor: Making Sure Those That Fight For It, Get A Piece of It Too! - 05/08/17 08:18 AM
I passed my test, so I may continue to Serve Those Who Serve us!
I'm proud to say that I've been getting residential real estate training for serving  our active duty and retired Military for almost 14 years now. Because of all the base closures in The Bay Area, I never got to work with many military clients. Moving to San Diego, CA fixed that! 
Over the years I've taken Military Relocation, Military Sensitivity Training: language and lifestyle. I've trained on rank/rate, pay scales, relocation services, etc. I have received training from Cartus, Navy Federal, USAA and Boots Across America to name a few.
I believe that … (5 comments)

realtor: Will You Die or Be The Butterfly? - 05/06/17 09:05 AM
People Fear CHANGE!
You Can Fear Change or Go Through Change, but if you fear it and do nothing,
it eventually kills your business. People rarely see the death sentence,
because it's not a sudden death,
it's a slow decay of what used to work and no longer does.
Every so many years I return my business to 
caterpillar-chrysalis-butterfly reborn. Notice I didn't say back to egg.
I plan self-inflicted and thought out change in my business. But, I don't start completely over, as my foundation is good.
I had to quote Nina Hollander here, she gave an insightful comment:
" no one changes until the pain of changing
is less than the pain of staying … (35 comments)

realtor: It's a Balancing Act, Never True Balance, That Sets You Free! - 05/02/17 06:42 AM
I'm well trained on this topic by Buffini & Company and much of what I preach here is from that 17 years of training.
You will actually defeat the purpose of the peace of mind you seek, if you seek "balance" in your life. Balance is a myth. What you seek is always in flux, therefore it's balancing you seek; those precious moments where you achieve the escape from your business and truly focus on your life, family and goals.
I have posted so often on this topic, I feel I've already entered Jeff Dowler's wonderful contest 100 times. So here's the best of what I can offer you, … (3 comments)

realtor: Hiking The UCSD Challenge Course in La Jolla, CA - 04/25/17 06:55 AM
I love having Sundays off, as one of my favorite things to do is go day hiking.
I don't always go to locally famous trails or big picturesque locations; in fact some times I just head out my front door and see where my "urban trails" lead me. Today, they lead me to the UCSD Challenge Course.
I never knew about his trail and "boot camp" style course, but I'd always caught a glimpse of it from my campus hikes. Today I decide to venture off the path and onto the trail and wow, look what I discovered, all while never leaving UCSD's expansive … (5 comments)

realtor: Podcast Episode #91: I'm #1 and I'm Broke! Lessons From The REProphet - 04/24/17 08:01 PM
When you passed the test and received your Real Estate License,
did you think you just got a job?
Not a job!
Many Real Estate Agents and Realtors do not have the slightest clue that they just opened a business, the day they got licensed. And if they did, they'd realize they were grossly under-trained for this prospect. They have no clue how to be a CEO, they may have some COO abilities and they definitely have no CFO skills, as evidenced by our industry's 80% failure rate.
Now let's suppose you do make it...
"Hey, welcome to the dwindling 20% that do!"
Why dwindling? Because it's said … (2 comments)

Thomas J.  Nelson, Realtor,CRS,e-Pro, Co-Host of Mail-Right's: Real Estate Agent Podcast (Big Block Realty 858.232.8722) Rainmaker large

Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor,CRS,e-Pro

Co-Host of Mail-Right's: Real Estate Agent Podcast

La Jolla, CA

More about me…

Big Block Realty 858.232.8722

Address: 4445 Eastgate Mall, Ste. 200, San Diego, CA, 92121

Mobile: 858-232-8722


Email Me




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