real estate coaching: Put on your Inflatable Suit and Think Creatively - 01/27/10 01:50 PM
On the evening news the other night, an item from Pittburg, KS caught my eye.  What looked like a psychedelic 1,000 legger approached people on the street, which caused some to run and some to gawk.  It was performance artist Jimmy Kuehnle wearing an inflatable suit to challenge people's perceptions and make them think.
As the artist puts it, "Our ways of thinking are very much in a routine and this is to break you out of your routine by walking the line between shocking and the absurd."  You recognize a tree as a tree or a truck as a truck … (5 comments)

real estate coaching: New FHA Rules Present a New Challenge for Agents - 01/20/10 02:48 PM
I guess I wrote yesterday's blog about needing help navigating through a myriad of new housing provisions a bit too soon.  Today, FHA announced new rules that flesh out HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan's announcement in December that buyers would soon have to put more skin in the game.
Some of the rules will require lenders to maintain more reserves and make responsible loans, while being more accountable for bad decisions in the past.  Lenders with sloppy underwriting practices could lose the ability to write FHA backed loans.
Other part of the announcement more directly affect borrowers, will need to have better … (6 comments)

real estate coaching: Heat Up Your Sales Year in the Warm Month of January - 01/13/10 09:54 AM
Did You Know That January is a "Warm" Month?
If you have  been digging out from recent snowfalls or are still recovering from cold spells throughout the country, this may be hard to believe.
The warm and fuzzy feelings of the holidays are still lingering, and that makes January a fine time to call on prospects. Remember, sales are based on emotion. So don't forget the FORD script (talk to them about their Family, Occupation, Recreation and Dreams).
Remember that people want their Realtors® to be professional at all times but they like the human touch too.  Nothing is as … (0 comments)

real estate coaching: Target Your Message and Say It with Class - 01/08/10 02:41 AM
I knew something was up.
A couple weeks ago, I commented on the  abrupt change in Target ads this Christmas.  The store has always presented itself as the place to go for trendy clothes and housewares at a reasonable price, but recently their ads downplayed style for savings. The "frugalistas" of the fall ads were replaced by the "apologetic-istas" of Christmas who were sorry they gave or got such nice gifts there.To be fair, there were other Target ads this holiday season, but the three I mentioned were the red flags that triggered my previous post. 
It  turns out that the ads … (5 comments)

real estate coaching: Help Homeowners Keep Their 2010 Resolutions - 01/01/10 12:17 PM

A recent survey put homeownership as the Number10 on the list of 10 Hottest Resolutions for 2010.  The interest that Americans have in this is backed up by a Move.com survey that inquired about real estate resolutions people have for the year.
The Move.com resolutions go like this.
1.   Start a home improvement project (37.7%)2.   Start saving money so you can purchase a new home (15.4%)3.   Fix my credit so I can buy a home next year (9.1%)4.   Become a first time home buyer (7.2%)5.   Refinance my mortgage or modify my loan (6.8%)6.   Learn more about local real estate condition in my community (5.5%)7.   Sell my home … (3 comments)

real estate coaching: From High Tech to "Well, shucks" - 12/29/09 02:56 PM

For years, you could always tell a Target ad from the competition. There weren't contrived scenarios that told you you'd get a good deal shopping at Target.  Instead music and fast moving images were juxtaposed one against another, then the familiar red logo would appear.
You felt you had just seen something clever, trendy, and effective.  You never came away from the ads knowing that lamps had been slashed to 2/$9.99, but you always felt that Target would give you both value and style for a reasonable price.
This year, apparently the store decide that smart, trendy ads weren't enough, … (0 comments)

real estate coaching: Holiday Carols to Prepare for the Year Ahead - 12/27/09 02:05 PM
Happy holidays to everyone!  We could say it in song  - but let's wait till the end!  Some agents have reported that the time right before Christmas was hectic, as the home buyer's tax credit proved more alluring than a pre-dawn sale at Target for some anxious buyers and sellers.  Perhaps this week will be a continuation. For others, this week between Christmas and New Year's may be a low key week, especially if you have decided to take a little time off in anticipation of a busy January. 
Whether you are easing into the new year or running into it, … (2 comments)

real estate coaching: Disregarding A Few Bad Numbers for the Facts - 12/21/09 02:17 PM
I shook my head as I read a recent Bloomberg news headline: Homebuyer Tax-Credit Extension Fails as Catalyst: Chart of Day that claimed the home buyer's tax credit extension did not result in an upward trend of stock  investors or homebuilders.  Both builders and Bloomberg economist expected to see an increase in the NAHB/Wells Fargo index but the numbers fell from 17 to 16 this month.
Wells Fargo analyst Carl Reichardt is already claiming "The extension has not materially helped traffic or sales despite the program's expansion."
His gloom and doom is misplaced.  Buyers and sellers are enthusiastic about the credit. … (0 comments)

real estate coaching: Santa Under Scrutiny - 12/20/09 05:20 AM
O brother! Or to be seasonal, o bah humbug!
Poor Santa has recently come under attack for being too fat, as well as "promoting obesity, reckless air travel and a general unhealthy lifestyle" according to an Australian doctor who was only partly joking.  Apparently, the busy man should park his sleigh at the end of each street, walk to the homes, and eschew cookies for carrots at each stop.  So what if he works non-stop most of the year managing elf workers and then distributes gifts worldwide in a 24 hour period?  Santa, who influences the behavior of children everywhere when … (53 comments)

real estate coaching: Don't Let the Virtual Be Your Only Reality - 12/17/09 01:30 PM
The holidays always brings out the comedians, but I was amused by a  comment someone left on Facebook.  The gist is: "Thanks for all those virtual gifts, the snowmen, the candy canes, the wrapped boxes, but I'll rather have some real gifts - some hundred dollar bills, some Wild Turkey, a few gift certificates, and a partridge stuffed with wild rice (no pear tree required. Here's my address - you can mail them to me."
"Ha, ha" may be your first response, as was mine.  This comment reminds us though that with all the web ways of interacting with clients, there … (5 comments)

real estate coaching: Tap the Pent Up Demand from Repeat Buyers - 12/14/09 01:38 PM
As agents, you know that many clients who would have liked to move within the last year or so have been hampered by a bad sales climate for sellers.  As housing prices fell, you could encourage some people to take less for the home because of the deal they would get on their new home.  Many others held back from entering the market out of fear their homes might be on the market for too long or because they just couldn't deal with the price cut. They have a pent up demand for homes.
The $6,500 credit for repeat buyers has … (3 comments)

real estate coaching: At Last - Fan This Page: www.Facebook.com/CorcoranCoaching - 12/02/09 12:29 PM
Just as the shoemaker's children are often the last to get shoes and the mechanic's wife the last to get brakes, Corcoran Consulting and Coaching finally set up a business page on Facebook.  We've suggested that others get business pages, but up to now we haven't...
As you know, Facebook frowns on mixing flagrant business dealings with personal matters on its pages and has turned off some accounts, though somewhat randomly.  Just talking about business does not seem to cross the line but soliciting business does.  Smart agents put their listings on their business pages but talk about the real estate … (7 comments)

real estate coaching: Invading Boundaries - No Big Deal? - 11/29/09 02:03 PM
A recent 20/20 revealed that Deal or No Deal star, comic, and actor Howie Mandel suffers from obsessive compulsive disease (OCD.)  For years he hid his fear of touching, while managing to have a successful career.  On occasions where someone succeeded in shaking his hand or otherwise invaded his boundaries, he receded into a frenzy of hand washing to make himself feel clean. 
For most people, simple touching does not provoke such an extreme reaction, yet we all feel irritated with our boundaries are invaded.  It can be physical invasion when people stand too close or make themselves too much at … (2 comments)

real estate coaching: Real Estate - "Bloody Fantastic?" - 11/29/09 09:25 AM
A few months ago, an unknown dowdy Scottish woman named Susan Boyle was received with a lot of eye rolling on the United Kingdom's Britain's Got Talent until she opened her mouth.  Her beautiful rendition of "I Dreamed A Dream," stunned the judges and audience, and though she did not win the competition, she got a record deal.
It is easy to jump on this part of the Susan Boyle story to lead into a pep talk about how appearances are deceiving or about how it's never too late to pursue a dream.  Either of those tangents would be true.  She … (3 comments)

real estate coaching: Season's Greetings. Agents Everywhere - 11/27/09 02:52 PM
Every year, real estate falls off when kids go back to school.  Families prefer to keep their children in the same school all year.  With the onset of the holidays, people get busy.  When it gets colder and then snowier in some parts of the country, people prefer not to move until it gets warmer.  The majority of people who move in the fall and winter are those who are transferred or have some financial or other pressure to brave the elements or the upset involved with having the kids change schools mid year. 
This year, things are different, as the … (0 comments)

real estate coaching: Survey Says: Only 1 in 20 Respondents Say They Will Buy Next Year - 11/16/09 06:54 AM
Before the home buyers tax credit was extended through April, 2010 and expanded to include more buyers, a survey by move.com indicated that only 1 in 20 people surveyed said they would buy a house next year.  Why?  The top reason was that they felt that home prices had hit bottom.  This was more important than bargain priced foreclosures, concerns about interest rates, and the pool of available homes.
This revelation feeds into our ongoing discussion of glass half empty/glass half full approach to real estate.  Of course, the number of people who might say they are planning to buy might … (19 comments)

real estate coaching: Face the Facts: Facebook Is In Your Future - 11/10/09 02:00 PM

For those of you who have shied away from Facebook and other social media because you don't see the connection between spending time chatting and ringing up sales on the real estate cash register, be forewarned:  it may be Facebook that delivers your website traffic, not Google searches.  According to a recent article in Copyblogger, Facebook is on the road to becoming a major source of information that may eliminate the need to be concerned with SEO. 
Rather that people searching Google to find information, they may ask a question on Facebook and get recommendations of people that their friends … (18 comments)

real estate coaching: Not Too Light/ Not Too Heavy Client Response - 11/08/09 02:32 PM
Have you seen the Bud Light commercials?  They are all along the theme of not too heavy/ not too light, which, of course, the taste that beer is supposed to embody. Realtors should take heed of the message.
Scenario One:  Girl breaking up with her boyfriend
Too light:  She tries to sugar coat the break, he misses the point
Too heavy:  She tells him the news and then pushes him out of her speeding car. He stil doesn't get it and hopes they'll still be Facebook friends
Scenario Two:  Man is trying to show off his amazing wonder dog
Too light:  … (34 comments)

real estate coaching: 30 Touches to Aid Housing Recovery - 10/28/09 12:42 AM

To take full advantage of the upcoming housing recovery, I recommend getting back to the basics of building relationships with past clients. Remember, it's cheaper to keep the old clients than to find new ones. Revisit them with 30 touches during 2010.
Whoa, Bob, that's a lot of touches. Not really. Not when you break it down. Let me explain - first, you snail mail to them once a month - that's 12. E-mail them once a month, so we're up to 24 now. Then send a quarterly market update - 28 touches. Then send a birthday card and a … (5 comments)

real estate coaching: Housing Recovery - Up or Down? - 10/27/09 03:32 PM
If you have read more than a blog or two of mind, you know I am an optimist.  That's why when Moody's Investors Service, a financial research firm, shared what some believe to be somber news in September, predicting it could take 10 years to get back to boom-level housing prices, I was not upset.
When I first saw the news about this slow return of a housing peak my first thought was, ‘Great, we've got 10 years of steady growth in real estate ahead of us.' I immediately saw the beauty in the news. The bright side. I suppose that's … (5 comments)