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Signs, Signs, everywhere there's signs..blocked out by the scenery, and wasting my time...(sounds kinda like TESLA)..REDUX

Mortgage and Lending with Funky Quail Vintage

I thought about my blog long and hard since last week...I originally published it with the statement listed below, but for some, that wasnt good enough...Sooo...contrary to my thinking, I decided to pull it, or take it down.  This was VERY discouraging to me, because in the end all I was trying to do was help.  I have/had more faith in the quality of the Realtors on Active Rain than in general because everyone on here seems to WANT to learn more!~  I am even LEAVING some the comments so everyone can read the intial ones left, as I have never been afraid of criticism.  I deleted several that were out and out abusive.  I also have deleted all of the pictures I personally had taken because examples of what I am talking about, dont seem to be what people want to see!


This was my intial disclaimer

"The following pictures are ones that I have taken on my way to work each day over the past week.  I have "whited" out some of the names in order to avoid "issues".  My only intention for this blog, is to create awareness, and make suggestions!  Nothing is meant personally!  Please enjoy the video and music at the end of the blog!  Thanks!  Bucky

Ask yourself, what is your sign doing for you?

  How is your sign portraying your business?  How is it portraying your clients home, and what does it represent?"



Over the past couple of weeks, I have noticed MORE AND MORE the For Sale signs in people's yards...some good, some bad, some ugly, and some nice!

My investigation, prior to doing this blog, revealed some interesting persepctives.  I would like to share them with you today!

1.  Getting a LENDER PARTNER-  Some Realtors don't believe in this.  None of the signs that I have seen over the past 2-4 weeks have anything to do with a Lender partner.   A Lender partner can help you in sooo many ways...just today for example, I stocked a flier box for one of my Realtors.   I called another that I am trying to become involved with about their sign having fallen down..at this time, they have not returned my call.   NOT having a LENDER PARTNER is a BIG BIG BIG mistake!  Rate sheets attached, examples of payments, and working open houses together are just s few QUICK examples!

2.  Making sure you have a flier box-  I have found during my "investigation", that the general attitude of Realtors who do not have one up is due to them wanting the customer to CALL THEM DIRECTLY off of the sign.  BIG MISTAKE!!  To me, that is pure arrogance Or, as I have found thru this blog... in some areas, the flier box is just not allowed!  This is sad.  Nothing you can really do about this!

3.   Most Realtors do not employ a call capture system.   This combined with a flier box can be a wonderful way to develop business!  Of course, there is a cost.  My guess is that quite simply most Realtors do not know about these types of systems!  If you have a question about this...email me at Darin@osmwi.com


4.  Many of the signs I have seen are tilted, falling down, or in sad shape.  Does your company have someone that takes care of this?   Or are you personally responsible for doing the work.  Either way, going professional all the way is what I am sure everybody wants for their business!

5.  It is clear to me, people were offended by my intial post.  Well, to that I would say I'm sorry.  However, again, if this does nothing but open your eyes to the fact that no matter HOW GOOD a REALTOR you are, sometimes a fresh perspective from "the street" is a good thing!  Maybe you should look in the mirror and ask yourself if I offended you, or if it hit home so well that you are really mad at yourself~


 6.  In no way would I ever want to TACKY UP a For Sale sign!  My only suggestion would be to make sure it is in good shape, legible, has all kinds of contact information, and is working FOR YOU, rather than against you!  Website information is ALWAYS good on a sign if it fits!

7.  Lastly, I am sure that you drive by your listings time & time again.  Many of you do not HAVE A PROBLEM with how your equipment looks, but rather than looking at it from YOUR perspective, try looking at the sign from a BUYERS perspective!   Do you think that most people have a pen & paper in the car, ready to write down your phone # on their way home from church?? I dont think so..I never did!   Do you think from JUST THE OUTSIDE a perspective buyer on a Sunday afternoon can guess how many bedrooms the home has?   Many people would say, they can just look it up on the internet...Well, what if they are not online?   Dont you think it would be GREAT if they could call an 800#, get information on JUST THIS PROPERTY, in YOUR OWN VOICE, without the hassle of going through the listing line, and putting in a Listing #, etc...and having to navigate the company phone tree?  Lastly, wouldnt it be nice to have these perspective buyers phone# and contact information?  I think so...because if they are not going to buy THIS HOUSE, they are STILL in the market for one right??...or, why would they have called!

All in all, the SIGN IN THE FRONT yard can do alot for you, or not.  What you do with it does reflect on your business to the public, as well as HOW HARD you trying on behalf of the seller to sell their wonderful home!




Here are some basic and some "not so" basic suggestions regarding signage and it's use!

1.  Paint the thing if it is a wooden post!

2.  Don't go cheap!

3.  Flier box EVERY TIME!-  Make sure it is weather proof!

4.  Get a Lender Partner-  They can help you replenish the fliers and help you defray any costs, as well as supply you with financing deals!

5.  GET BETTER FLIERS!  Have your Lender partner help you, and if your listing qualifies for financing deals, ADVERTISE IT with additional signage!  IE:  "THIS HOME QUALIFIES FOR 100% Financing with the USDA"

6.  Consider LIGHTING the sign, with a Solar Powered single light!  Be the first to do this!  You can go with one that is $9.95 aiming UP at the sign like they sell at Lowes or Home Depot, or they make ones that CLIP ON  and shine down on the sign! , (about 40 bucks)


7.  Make sure your sign is straight, and can easily be seen!  Kathleen made a comment on this blog about REFLECTIVE signs...that is an awesome idea too!  Thank you!

8.  If you attach balloons to the sign for an open house, or any  other event, make sure you take them with you and dont let them "die" on the sign!

9.    Consider adding a "feature" attachment to the sign...like "waterfront, stables, or other exciting features".

10.   Make sure they are easy to add things to..like the texting feature, call capture, or OPEN HOUSE SIGN!  In other words, try to go away from Tradional and embrace change!  Making sure the sign is versatile it key!



I am a very proud Lender looking to do nothing more than help people sell!

Click on the U TUBE for the video!  Enjoy!-   Bucky! 


 Thanks for reading & Keep selling!


As always, I welcome your concerns,comments,issues and suggestions!  Darin@Osmwi.com

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Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

Hi Darin,

Signs being "seen" in my area is a problem, but we have to go with county rules and regs and put them off the right of way on the street.  The county regularly picks them up if they are not.  So out by the street where it can been seen is a no go, has to be behind the property pins.  Sometimes that means 15 feet down the driveway.  (behind the shrubs)  I buy extra tall ones.  If we have an open house we put out temps while we are there and even from time to time the "code enforcement officer" better known as the "sign witch" has picked those up while we are inside the home.  We are fortunate to be able to put large signs on the lake side of our listings on the lake.  GA power owns the lake and they tend to be helpful to agents unlike the county officials who seemingly coundn't give a rats behind about local businesses.

Jul 13, 2009 09:22 AM
Joshua Haight
Keller Williams - Lincoln, CA

I would say in the least, thank you for getting me to think more about signage!

Jul 13, 2009 09:25 AM
Lisa Udy
Platinum Real Estate Group - Logan, UT
Logan Utah Realtor

Hi Darin,

I am a freak when it comes to how my business looks. I have spent hours upon hours critiquing my sings, fliers, advertising, and pictures. Any agent that doesn't, doesn't seem to do that well. 


Jul 13, 2009 10:50 AM
Linda K. Mayer
License # 01767321 - La Verne, CA

Darin -

Great blog, and I don't know what some people have complained about.  If the shoe fits, wear it.  If not, toss it!  Same goes with blogs. 

Now for me, flyers, nope.  Get more sign calls and are able to turn them into buyers for other properties if I actually talk to them.  And almost everyone has a cell ohone with a msg pad to write down my phone number.  The light will get stolen... just like the magnets on a lot of our cars.  Sign posts are done by the professional sign co., etc.

I'm all for the little things, but it's more important for me to get them on the phone rather then hand them a flyer or website! Dang, I must be good on the phone!  LOL


Jul 13, 2009 11:08 AM
Kathleen Cooper
Kathleen Cooper, Sposato Realty Group - Worcester, MA
Sposato Realty Group - Broker Owner

Thanks Darin!  http://www.reflectiverealestate.com/ is the company we go through to order our signs, they are beautiful!  He does a wonderful job, fairly quick and a great price compared to the local Sign A Rama out here.  We just ordered 10 new panel signs for about $500....I know in my area I can't get the reflective large panels like that for that cheap.  Thanks again for the reference, I wasn't even thinking about it!

You have a great point, putting the numbers on paper and advertising it with your listings sure does help bring home buying into a reality for people.  Thanks for the blog!



Jul 13, 2009 12:27 PM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Jeani at Exit-  You know, very profound comments...and I AM GLAD they came from a REALTOR!  :)  LOL..... 

"I have found that since I started buying my own signs I take much better care of them! "-  You know, it is no different than renting really isnt it?  Would you take care of the lawn that you are renting better than one YOU OWN??   GREAT POINTS!  Thank you for your perspective!-  D

Janet G-  I think you are "stumping now!"  :) LOL....I really had not intended to "stir things up", but prior to the REDUX that is definitely what I did!  Truly wasnt my intention, but hey...that happens sometimes!   I really liked this blog, and spent some time on it.  I had hoped Realtors especially would have been more accepting is all!  Thanks!  I have the one you and I have talked about coming out next week!  I PROMISE!-  Darin

Jul 13, 2009 02:39 PM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Tammy-  I would think LIGHTING your signs would be EVER more important now if that is the case!  I wonder if you could attach a flier box to their MAILBOX and not get into trouble?? Also, have you ever tried petitioning for a change??  Just curious!  THANKS for sharing! -  Darin

Jul 13, 2009 02:47 PM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Josh-  You know, that is what I was going for!  Im glad you got something out of it!  THANK YOU!!  - Darin

Lisa U-  Nice to see you again!  ....  You are echoing some of what LENN HARLEY said, and I totally agree!   YOU should be a freak because it is YOUR business and your paycheck, or not!  ..I think many of the signs I have seen have been VERY REFLECTIVE of the agents that are selling the home!  Sadly....THANKS FOR CONTRIBUTING TODAY!!!-  Buckster!

Jul 13, 2009 02:49 PM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Linda M-  I hope you come back and read this response.  Let me THROW something at ya....How about the buyers that DONT WANT to talk to a REALTOR and get the "hard sell" over the phone, or feel "pushed" to give up their email/phone#, address etc...or the ones that say...can I have your #, and Ill call you??  Linda, Im sorry, but I think you are wrong.   I have a personal challenge for you!  If you were to TRY things, the way I am suggesting...and it didnt work...I WOULD PAY for the months of the service for you...!  There, you have it in writing!!  90 Days!  However, if I am right!  You pay...THere, it is a no lose situation for you!  However, you would have to do a couple of things!  Better yet, have your OWN LENDER PARTNER take this challenge with you!   If you are that good on the phone, how would a FREE 800#, with unlimited extensions, and recording that YOU CAN MAKE yourself about the house...that you can TRAP the phone#'s, 100% of the time sound??   Email me, I will send you the link, and the super duper CODE i got for all AR members!  My email is Darin@osmwi.com    Thanks!  I appreciate the kind words, perspective, and comments!-  Darin

Jul 13, 2009 03:04 PM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Kathleen-  Thanks again for your WONDERFUL information and link!  I appreciate it, and I am sure your sphere person will too!  ...I think the #'s are HUGE, because they know RIGHT AWAY if they can afford it or not!  Experienced Realtors also can help with this, because they ONLY want to show properties and make offers on properties a person can afford!

All in all, Ill say this...Another thing we ALL HAVE TO  THINK about, is if the customer is a buyer now, 1 month from now, 1 year from now, or never!  The LENDER PARTNER relationship is VERY important in this part of the process, and personally I think is MORE NECESSARY today than it ever has been!

Thanks and YOU are welcome!



Jul 13, 2009 03:10 PM
Lane Bailey
Century 21 Results Realty - Suwanee, GA
Realtor & Car Guy

I always love the sign that looks like someone hit it with a car and dragged it... then propped it back up...

Jul 13, 2009 04:42 PM
Robin Dampier REALTORĀ®
Coldwell Banker King - Hendersonville, NC
Hendersonville & Western NC Real Estate Source

Hi Darin -- many of the things you mention have to do with local rules/regs and others are the reality that some folks just don't pay attention to or bother with.  But also depending on the community/area iinvolved the seller has some responsibility in alerting the listing agent to sign problems, etc.  I know that some times folks like to play tricks and move/relocate For Sale signs, trash them, etc.  A listing agent can't be watching all their listing signs constantly unless they have them on web cams (just funning w/that remark!) -- this is assuming they have more than one listing.  In "normal" times I would agree that financing info from a lender is important to have available in the property along with a property brochure for potential buyers to remember the property by.  With the short sales/foreclosures it is a little different (or maybe that thought should be re-thought.)

Thanks for the post and I saw nothing offensive that any professional would/could object to.  In any profession there are the good and the not so goods.

I love the signs that you can't find solid ground to stomp them into!!  You know -- the ones where every place you try to place it the builder, or whatever, placed pebbles/stones right under the dirt and you can't even pound into the ground or find the ground.  A pet peeve of mine.

Sue of Robin and Sue

Jul 13, 2009 05:48 PM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Lane-  From the car guy, that is a funny retort!  :)...have you ever done that??  I have ONE of the pics I had HAD in the old blog that LOOKED like it got hit by a car....funny thing is, it STILL LOOKS LIKE THAT>>>and worse!  I even called the REALTOR!  Ignored!-  Ta daaa     Darin

Jul 14, 2009 01:05 AM
Larry Bettag
Cherry Creek Mortgage Illinois Residential Mortgage License LMB #0005759 Cherry Creek Mortgage NMLS #: 3001 - Saint Charles, IL
Vice-President of National Production

Nice Star homeboy.  Didn't know that you had it in you for two in one week!  I saw a post on this a bit ago.  I think it was from Lenn.  Same result....gold star.  This is a good topic.  You can control your image.  Just put the good stuff out there and bury or redo the bad.  Congrats D MONEY!

Jul 14, 2009 01:14 AM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Robin &^ Sue-  You had alot to say in your response...THANK YOU!  That was great!   I think you are right...that the SELLER SHOULD be more responsible for the sign...that is also why I suggested giving THEM fliers to help stock the box!

You know, I am sure that SOME SIGN COMPANY somewhere, figured out HOW to get around the "hard ground" issue.  I know in Tucson AZ where my folks live, people get concerned about the sign screwing up their landscaping, as there is no grass!  Well, you know, some people just have to get over it!  The sign is not JUST advertising for YOU and YOUR business, but it is the Silent Warrior when people from 3rd shift are driving by, or on SUNDAY when people are out visiting open houses in the neighborhood.  It is PART of selling a home!  If a neighborhood association, or HOA, or whatever, told ME that I couldnt put a sign in my yard to sell MY house...I would challenge them legally.  I could care less what association papers say...and btw-  who's responsibility is it to explain the ASSOCIATION rules & paperwork? 

Lastly, the LENDER PARTNER INFO I disagree with you on.  Many of them can include multiple payment and loan size options.  Even for short sale people, you dont have to show it as smaller purchase price, just smaller LOAN size! 

Great input...thank you!  and today, more than ever...A LENDER PARTNER is critical!  Thanks!  D

Jul 14, 2009 01:15 AM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Larry, thanks !  I appreciate it!  I am sure yours today...will get a star too!  I saw it and was shocked!  Great job and getting IT back out there too! 

You know, Andre Agassi used to say..."Image is everything"...However, in some people's eyes, I guess it is based on WHo you are marketing too!

Congrats on the Ambassadorship too!


Jul 14, 2009 01:24 AM
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce

  Sometimes when are not really close to the listing, you aren't aware that the ground heaved the sign crooked...it fell...we seldom have vacant homes or ones we don't see a minimum of weekly but weather...snow plows...etc. can play nasty tricks on what was probably a well placed sign at the inception.

Jul 14, 2009 01:37 AM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Hey Guys!

You know, that is why you are exceptional Realtors.  You see them weekly, or so...That is alot in my opinion...so great job..and great points!  HEAVING is a great word...but I have seen the signs here, be like they are...for the past MONTH.  That is irresponsible, and they wonder why they are not selling!  WOW...I hadnt considered the affect of the snowplows either....I think then, people have to take THAT into condsideration when they are PLACING the sign..and the time of year!  I am certainly no expert...just an observer!  Thanks you guys! You both ROCK!-  Buckster J Buckster

Jul 14, 2009 01:41 AM
Mike Jones
SUNSTREET MORTGAGE, LLC (BK-0907366, NMLS 145171) - Tucson, AZ
Mike Jones NMLS 223495


Congratulations on the feature!! 

If you attach balloons to the sign for an open house, or any  other event, make sure you take them with you and dont let them "die" on the sign!

That's my favorite out of the bunch.  I've landed, completed my first day, and have a VA purchase application to the processor.  Come on over and check it out on my blog.

Mike in Tucson

Jul 15, 2009 12:33 AM
Darin Osenberg
Funky Quail Vintage - Nashville, TN

Mike, well, that didnt take long@! I kinda figured!  My folks were here visiting yesterday and the NIGHT before, and I told them what happened!  They werent even concnered!  Anyway, yeah, the balloon thing was something I got from a friend!  She had an open house, and the REALTOR never took down the balloons.  She went out of town during the week, and came back over a week later, and they still were not down! Yuck!  Owe, and the house was a 3200 sq ft, 4 bedroom, brick colonial with full basement, in the Atlanta area! 

Ill visit you soon!  Thanks..and glad you liked the blog!@  Thanks also for the kind words!


Jul 15, 2009 02:52 AM