Articles http://realtormag.realtor.org/articles en Getting Rolling With .REALTOR http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/feature/article/2014/10/getting-rolling-realtor <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> With the recent roll-out of the new top-level .REALTOR domain behind us, REALTOR® Magazine looks at how practitioners are planning to use this new online marketing tool. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Wednesday, October 29, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/meg-white">Meg White</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Beth Tyler was taught the importance of a domain name very early on. Back in 1996 when the sales associate with Long &amp; Foster Real Estate in Annapolis, Md., looked to see if her name was available in dot-com form, she found out it was a porn site.</p> <p>She kept checking back every year to see if the &ldquo;other Beth Tyler&rdquo; had given it up, but she had no luck. So she got creative.</p> <p>&ldquo;Because of that experience, I&rsquo;ve always had to think outside the box when it comes to domain names. ... I even bought BethTyler.xxx just so she wouldn&rsquo;t get it,&rdquo; Tyler, e-PRO, says. For a while, she considered offering the triple-x domain in a trade for the .com version, but says, &ldquo;It&rsquo;s so tainted now that it&rsquo;s never going to work for me.&rdquo;</p> <p>She estimates that she owns 40 to 60 domain names with GoDaddy. Around half of them are temporary URLs that she uses to market specific properties, while others are part of her permanent marketing plan to target specific areas. So when she heard about the opportunity to get <a href="http://bethtyler.realtor/">BethTyler.REALTOR</a>, she jumped at the chance.</p> <p>&ldquo;The biggest fun was being able to finally get my name,&rdquo; Tyler says. &ldquo;It was a big deal to me. ... That survives forever.&rdquo;</p> <p>The excitement seems to have caught on with a fair number of Tyler&rsquo;s colleagues. From the release of the domains to individual NAR members early last week through this Tuesday afternoon, some 80,000 domains were registered under the .REALTOR domain, far beyond the expectations of NAR Vice President of Strategic Alliances and Product Management Ken Burlington.</p> <p>&ldquo;We absolutely are thrilled with these early results,&rdquo; Burlington says. &ldquo;This really has exceeded our projections.&rdquo;</p> <blockquote> <p>NAR is hosting a live effort to help members who want to sign up for a .REALTOR domain, or those who need help with the process, at the REALTORS&reg; Convention &amp; Expo in New Orleans. At the <a href="http://www.realtor.org/convention.nsf/pages/narbooth?opendocument" target="_blank">NAR booth</a> (#1019) on the Expo floor, six laptops will be dedicated to assisting members, with staff available to answer questions during expo hours. (<a href="http://www.realtor.org/convention.nsf/pages/expoinfo?opendocument" target="_blank">More expo information and hours here</a>.)</p> </blockquote> <p>In all, NAR is offering the first 500,000 members the first year of domain registration for free. Only about 50,000 of those initial 80,000 registrations were individual members claiming their one free domain name. The other 30,000 were domain names purchased in addition to the freebie. That means there were still around 450,000 free spots left to be claimed by members. (Burlington expects to release another set of domains to brokerages, real estate designations, REALTOR&reg; associations, and NAR business partners in the first quarter of 2015.)</p> <p>Burlington says the momentum will likely keep building: &ldquo;Once the word gets out and once people start seeing what others are doing, there really is going to be a rush.&rdquo;</p> <p>Initially, there was some confusion about the way the .REALTOR domains were set up. Some members thought their domains were being automatically redirected to realtor.com&reg;. However, after members complete the process to obtain their .REALTOR domain, they&rsquo;re given the option to park the domain with a &ldquo;coming soon&rdquo; page, redirect the link to an existing page they own, or have the URL directed to their realtor.com&reg; profile page.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>.REALTOR In Action</strong></p> <p>You can use your .REALTOR domain to create a customized experience, showing potential customers what it means to be a REALTOR&reg;. For a great example, see <a href="http://www.brian.realtor/">brian.realtor</a>, created by Nashville, Tenn., REALTOR&reg; Brian Copeland, team leader of <a href="http://www.nashvilleandbeyond.com/">Nashville &amp; Beyond</a>.</p> </blockquote> <p>We wanted members to have options. ... We didn&#39;t want to tell them,&lsquo;You have to do this; you have to do that,&rsquo;&rdquo; Burlington says. As a result, &ldquo;we are continually impressed with the creative ways that members have been using these domains.</p> <p>Burlington estimates that more than 23,000 members chose to forward their new domain names to their free realtor.com&reg; profile page as of Tuesday afternoon. The profile page pulls in MLS data from realtor.com&reg;, such as listings, open houses, and sold data (where this does not conflict with MLS rules or nondisclosure laws). Burlington notes that while there are a number of customizable fields in the realtor.com&reg; profile pages, these data sets are constructed so that they cannot be altered by individual agents. However, agents can choose whether or not their profiles display the data sets publicly.</p> <p>&ldquo;The purpose of this is for members to be able to show consumers their activity,&rdquo; Burlington says. &ldquo;[Realtor.com&reg;] intentionally designed it to be only data that&rsquo;s verified.&rdquo;</p> <p>Whether or not members decide to purchase a .REALTOR domain, claiming the realtor.com&reg; profile has other benefits. One possible motivator is that these pages are part of the upgrades being made to the &ldquo;Find a REALTOR&reg;&rdquo; function of the site coming next year. Members who claim their profile page now will be the first ones to see their search results improved to match the new &ldquo;Find a REALTOR&reg; 2.0&rdquo; format coming in 2015.</p> <p>Tina Struppa Pavlov, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, sales associate with Coldwell Banker Alfonso Realty Inc. in Gulfport, Miss., was one of the members who chose that option, directing <a href="http://tinapavlov.realtor/">TinaPavlov.REALTOR</a> to her newly claimed realtor.com&reg; profile page. She says she was one of the first agents in her area to get her own web site back in 1999. As an early adopter of technology, she&rsquo;s now taken advantage of several of the enhancements available on the realtor.com&reg; profile page. She got help from realtor.com&reg; staff to bring in one feed of her Facebook posts and another of past client testimonials.</p> <p>She&rsquo;s not sure if she&rsquo;ll continue to maintain the realtor.com&reg; profile page separately from her web site, TinaPavlov.com, but she says she appreciates the ability to take advantage of free marketing opportunities across the web.</p> <blockquote> <p>For more information about NAR&rsquo;s involvement in the world of emerging top-level domains, check out <a href="http://www.realtor.org/topics/top-level-domain" target="_blank">realtor.org&rsquo;s topic page on the subject</a>.</p> </blockquote> <p>&ldquo;Anything that I can put a little freebie profile page on, I do,&rdquo; she says, including her MLS, which has recently added a free virtual tour option. &ldquo;All this was stuff I used to pay for, so I&rsquo;m happy about that.&rdquo;</p> <p>Another freebie included in the realtor.com&reg; profile page is e-mail services, wherein NAR members can choose one e-mail address using their new domain name (for example, info@yourdomain.REALTOR) and have it forwarded to an existing address. Another feature Burlington says he&rsquo;s especially excited about is realtor.com&reg;&rsquo;s new Foursquare-like check-in feature that allows agents to make their efforts in the field more visible. The GPS-enabled tool lets agents check in, with one click, when they are actively showing a home.</p> <p>&ldquo;That is a very cool new feature that no one else has besides realtor.com&reg;,&rdquo; Burlington says. He notes that the tool allows newer agents, who may not have an impressive list of past sales or current listings, to show they are active in their market.</p> <p>Tyler says she isn&rsquo;t sure if she&rsquo;s going to use the realtor.com&reg; profile page in the long run, or if she&rsquo;ll redirect the three .REALTOR domain names she acquired last week to another site entirely. One of those domains is certainly evidence of her long-term thinking, however. Though she&rsquo;s firmly entrenched in the Annapolis, Md., area now (as evidenced by her investment in Annapolis-Beth.REALTOR), she also has her long-off semi retirement in mind with her additional purchase of NCWaterfront-Beth.REALTOR.</p> <p>&ldquo;We have a vacation house in North Carolina, so I went ahead and bought it,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s not anytime soon, but I plan on being a real estate agent for a long time!&rdquo;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>With the recent roll-out of the new top-level .REALTOR domain behind us, REALTOR&reg; Magazine looks at how practitioners are planning to use this new online marketing tool.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-png" alt="image/png icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/Oct14_NC_dotrealtor.png" type="image/png; length=113950">Oct14_NC_dotrealtor.png</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="147" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/Oct14_NC_dotrealtor_0.png?1414612469" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/Oct14_LP_dotrealtor.png?1414612459" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/10/06/nar-wins-rights-realestate-domain">NAR Wins Rights to &#039;.Realestate&#039; Domain</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/11/01/godaddy-will-not-sell-realtor-domains">GoDaddy Will Not Sell .REALTOR Domains</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/10/22/claim-your-realtor-domain-thursday">Claim Your .REALTOR Domain on Thursday</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Feature Wed, 29 Oct 2014 19:54:34 +0000 mwhite 17605 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Cut the Middle Man Out http://realtormag.realtor.org/technology/feature/article/2014/11/cut-middle-man-out <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> When it comes to marketing listings, many practitioners pay an IDX provider to set up an MLS feed on their website. Others have decided there are better ways to get their listings in front of clients. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Monday, November 3, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/graham-wood">Graham Wood</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>It may seem like a forgone conclusion that you should have your listings displayed front and center on your website, but some real estate practitioners are finding less value in it these days. While many choose to pay a third-party IDX provider to set up a searchable MLS feed on their sites, others say the cost isn&rsquo;t worth it, instead turning to other platforms that they say offer more exposure and a better return on their investment.</p> <p>MLS migration is a common solution for getting listings to display on a personal website, most often involving an IDX company storing MLS data on its servers and migrating that data onto an agent or broker&rsquo;s website. The agent or broker pays a monthly fee for this feed, which is automatically updated regularly.</p> <p><object align="right"><script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8" src="http://static.polldaddy.com/p/8407835.js"></script><noscript><a href="http://polldaddy.com/poll/8407835/">IDX feeds are…</a></noscript></object></p> <p>But one major drawback to using an IDX platform is that it doesn&rsquo;t give the agent website any of the search engine optimization value of the MLS data, says Carolyn Bickerton, a former practitioner who now works for real estate web development company Realtyna Inc.</p> <p>&ldquo;The IDX provider is a middle man,&rdquo; Bickerton explains. &ldquo;It gives you the data to display listings on your site. The IDX provider has all of the real raw pages from the MLS on its server, which means it keeps all of the IP addresses, so it gets most of the SEO value. Agents are actually paying IDX providers to rob them of SEO value.&rdquo;</p> <p>A different issue, though, is what drove Ivy Beitner, broker at Century 21 North Homes in Snohomish, Wash., to drop her IDX provider. Most of her clients don&rsquo;t rely on agent or broker websites for property search&mdash;they go to real estate portals such as realtor.com&reg;. So what&rsquo;s the point in paying for a feed on her website?</p> <p>&ldquo;People start looking at houses way before they&rsquo;re even prequalified, and they just get comfortable with whatever interface they find most helpful,&rdquo; Beitner says. &ldquo;No agent site can compete with the large real estate sites, simply because we don&rsquo;t have the kind of funds it takes to be at the top of Google search results. That makes IDX not worth the extra $30 or so a month. I would rather spend that money on something I think would be more effective: a self-promotional app, for example, that my clients can simultaneously use to search for homes.&rdquo;</p> <p>That&rsquo;s exactly how Tyler Pearsall, a salesperson with Coldwell Banker in Jupiter, Fla., advertises his listings. Though he does use an IDX provider to surface listings on his website, he says he gets more leads and better exposure through the Coldwell Banker mobile app, which allows him to text links to MLS listings directly to clients. The app uses a phone&rsquo;s GPS to map listings so clients can see which properties are nearby. Clients can click on the listings and instantly call or text the agent for more information.</p> <p>&ldquo;It provides a more on-the-go means of MLS access,&rdquo; Pearsall says. &ldquo;I don&rsquo;t think traditional websites for listings will go away, but they will surely be the lesser-used platform. Since smartphones and tablets take precedence over desktops and laptops these days, MLS access has to be streamlined and easy to use.&rdquo;</p> <h4> IDX vs. Organic MLS Migration</h4> <p>For those who still want an MLS feed on their site, there&rsquo;s an option other than IDX integration: It&rsquo;s called organic MLS migration. Companies providing organic MLS migration, such as Realtyna, connect the MLS feed directly to agent sites instead of hosting the data on an IDX server and migrating it from there. Essentially, it eliminates the middle man and reroutes the IP addresses of MLS property pages to agents&rsquo; sites so they get all of the SEO value, Bickerton says.</p> <p>&ldquo;When we do an MLS migration, we put the real pages on the agent&rsquo;s server,&rdquo; Bickerton explains of Realtyna&rsquo;s process. &ldquo;We get the feed from the board, and we put it directly on the agents&rsquo; websites. All those IP addresses lead back to your website, so you get all the SEO value and the leads.&rdquo;</p> <p>Agents also pay only a one-time fee&mdash;$1,139 to $1,349, depending on the website platform&mdash;for the setup; there are no monthly fees.</p> <p>Amir Feinsilber, broker-owner and CEO of The Force Realty in Seattle, a company that used Realtyna to set up an organic MLS feed on its site, says he&rsquo;s seeing far more SEO value than he did when the company used an IDX vendor. &ldquo;The amount of traffic to our site has increased exponentially,&rdquo; Feinsilber says. &ldquo;Lead generation now happens through osmosis, in that we are heavily indexed [on search engines] naturally and receive phone and Web leads as a result without having to spend a tremendous amount of marketing dollars on pay-per-click and other brute-force methods of generating traffic to our site.&rdquo;</p> <p>Still, there can be advantages to using an IDX platform for MLS migration. Feinsilber says that when his company used IDX integration, the costs of developing an MLS feed were much less than going the organic route, and the time it took to set it up on the company website was minimal. &ldquo;Typically, these solutions were either instant or took a few hours to integrate while [my brokerage] inherited a suite of well-polished tools,&rdquo; he says.</p> <p>Whatever route you choose, it pays to take a thoughtful approach about whether listing feeds make sense for your overall business plan and budget. After all, your goal is to help consumers find not only the listings that most appeal to them but also the trusted agent they want to guide them through the transaction.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>When it comes to marketing listings, many practitioners pay an IDX provider to set up an MLS feed on their website. Others have decided there are better ways to get their listings in front of clients.&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_T_listings.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=67699">oct14_T_listings.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_T_listings_0.jpg?1414515464" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_T_listings.jpg?1414515486" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/09/15/some-listings-are-getting-virtual-renovation">Some Listings Are Getting a Virtual Renovation</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/feature/article/2014/01/do-you-know-where-your-listings-are">Do You Know Where Your Listings Are?</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/commentary/article/2013/07/it-s-listings-stupid">It’s the Listings, Stupid</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Feature Mon, 27 Oct 2014 20:18:05 +0000 mwhite 17568 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Hunting for NNNs http://realtormag.realtor.org/commercial/feature/article/2014/11/hunting-for-nnns <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Triple-net leases have their risks, but the biggest investor challenge is simply getting one. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/paula-hess">Paula Hess </a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Your client just sold a small apartment building and is weary of the hassles of the landlord experience. While a capital gains hit is looming (tick-tock), the client sours on lackluster alternatives like parking the proceeds in a savings or money market account or risking it in the stock market.</p> <p>These dynamics are fueling a surge in 1031 exchange buyers&mdash;both individuals and institutional investors&mdash;who are flocking to triple-net leases (NNN), which have all the perks and few of the downsides of being a landlord. Under the terms of triple-net leases, the tenant pays rent, property taxes, insurance, maintenance, and overhead; typical lease durations are 25 years. These dynamics, commercial brokers report, are creating a demand for exchange properties that they are struggling to satisfy.</p> <p>The perceived safety of triple nets contributes greatly to their appeal. &ldquo;Net-lease properties have bondlike attributes and, as a result, are more connected to the bond market and interest rates than other types of real estate,&rdquo; says Gary Ralston, CCIM, CRE, with Coldwell Banker Commercial Saunders Ralston Dantzler Realty in Lakeland, Fla.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>The New Residential NNN</strong></p> <p>Although triple-net leases have been the exclusive domain of commercial real estate, the same low rates of return on fixed-income investments are <a href="/news-and-commentary/briefs/article/2014/11/new-residential-nnn">spurring interest in structuring residential properties as triple-net leases</a>.</p> </blockquote> <p>It is these bondlike and passive landlord attributes that make triple-net leases appealing destinations for risk-averse investors&mdash;and especially alluring alternatives to 1031 exchange buyers&mdash;seeking to defer taxable income. And, as Ralston notes, &ldquo;Leases in excess of a decade in duration bridge real estate and economic cycles.&rdquo; And that&rsquo;s a highly desirable sweet spot for many investors.</p> <p>Jonathan Hipp, founder, president, and CEO of Calkain Cos. and coauthor of The Little Book of Triple Net Lease Investing, concurs. &ldquo;There is a tremendous amount of capital sitting out there, and net leases are very attractive when looking at other fixed-income alternatives. A triple-net lease is really a corporate bond wrapped in real estate,&rdquo; says Hipp.</p> <p>Ralston cites the 1031 buyer as the biggest influence on the current triple-net market, in terms of demand and pace, noting that 1031 buyers must identify a replacement property within 45 days of the sale of the relinquished property. &ldquo;Net-lease properties are easier and simpler to underwrite,&rdquo; says Ralston, largely because the tenant is responsible for most expenses, including, in many cases, the roof and the structure of the building.</p> <h4> 1031s Driving Cap Rates South</h4> <p>Geoffrey Faulkner, ccim, managing partner at NNNet Advisors in San Francisco, observes that cap rates are the lowest he&rsquo;s seen in his career. &ldquo;At the beginning of the year, everyone was wondering how they could go any lower, and the last two quarters, they have,&rdquo; he says.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s a tale of two property types. What&rsquo;s driving cap rates down are the better credit deals with 10 or more years on them,&rdquo; says Faulkner. &ldquo;These are your household names&mdash;McDonalds, Wells Fargo, Walgreens. (In general, the higher the tenant&rsquo;s credit rating, the lower the cap rate.) On the other side, deals that maybe have a bit of hair on them, whether it&rsquo;s a lesser credit deal or shorter lease term, those are trading at a higher premium.&rdquo;</p> <p>Faulkner and California brokers are challenged by a lack of supply in part because the state&rsquo;s NNN product is held by families and trusts. &ldquo;The better West Coast product rarely trades,&rdquo; says Faulkner, which means California 1031 exchange buyers are seeking higher yields outside the Golden State. As many as 50 percent of 1031 exchange buyers originate from California.</p> <p>NNNet Advisors represented a California 1031 exchange buyer in the acquisition of a Christian Brothers Automotive in Sandy Springs, Ga., for $2.5 million. The lease had 14 years remaining on it and terms included a 15-year sale leaseback option. The company also represented the seller of a drive-through Starbucks in Oklahoma City. This short-term lease (three-and-a-half years) fell out of contract a couple of times due to financing. &ldquo;That&rsquo;s what dragged out the deal. The price per square foot on a drive-through is very high. We had to comp that out,&rdquo; Faulkner explains.</p> <p>&ldquo;I deal with buyers and sellers all over the country,&rdquo; he adds, &ldquo;and they always say, &lsquo;I cannot compete with the California exchange buyer, because they will pay the most because they have to.&rsquo; &rdquo; Faulkner has noticed that institutional buyers and REITs that historically do not buy below 7 percent have settled for low cap rates. &ldquo;Lately, I&rsquo;ve seen them dip into the 6s, because they need to pay a dividend and their overhead.&rdquo;</p> <p>Deborah Vannelli, CCIM, director of net-lease sales for Upland Real Estate Group Inc. in Minneapolis, has observed the same scenario. &ldquo;There have been quite a few 1031s, but even the 1031 buyers, as of late, have been competing with the family trust investors and the institutional buyers, and that&rsquo;s primarily due to lack of product and demand. The institutional buyers and REITs need to achieve the goals they&rsquo;ve set for Wall Street.&rdquo;</p> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_C_nnn_chart 2.jpg" style="width: 500px; height: 273px; float: left;" /></p> <p>Recent deals for Vannelli include a McDonald&rsquo;s ground lease that the investor acquired from a developer: $1.6 million sales price, with a new 20-year lease that included 10 percent rent increases every five years and a 4 percent cap rate. &ldquo;It is a ground lease so investors don&rsquo;t have depreciation, but they definitely do have appreciation of the property, and the building would revert to their ownership at whatever time McDonald&rsquo;s does not renew the lease. Many buyers prefer ground leases because the price point is lower, since they are not paying for the construction cost of the building. Even though it is a 4 percent cap rate, if they have rent increases every five years, it gives them a nice return overall.&rdquo;</p> <p>Vannelli points to the retailer &ldquo;at the corner of Happy &amp; Healthy&rdquo; as a benchmark for NNN cap rates. &ldquo;Walgreens is a good reference point throughout the years,&rdquo; she explains. &ldquo;For 20 years the stores have been selling pretty consistently, depending on location or timeline,&rdquo; says Vannelli. Cap rates for the stores ranged from 8.25 percent to 9 percent in the 1995&ndash;1997 era, she notes, with the rates trending incrementally downward since then. The retailer&rsquo;s high creditworthiness is coveted by triple-net investors, because regardless, the chain will pay its rent. Earlier this year, Vannelli closed a Walgreens with 18 years left on a triple-net lease at a cap rate of 5.85 percent. &ldquo;Today, Walgreens is trading at a 5.5 percent cap rate. Investors who acquire a Walgreens treat it like a bond with real estate.&rdquo;</p> <p>Vannelli confirms that exchange buyers are driving down not only cap rates but also due diligence timelines. The high demand from all buyer types&mdash;1031s, family trusts, and REITs&mdash;drives higher prices and lower cap rates. Buyers of 1031 exchanges are tax-motivated and willing to pay more aggressive prices to ensure they satisfy their 1031 deadlines. Many triple-net lease properties have multiple offers with the investors offering a due diligence timeline of 14 days versus 21 or 30 days if paying cash for new construction properties. &ldquo;Deals are closing at near or full asking price,&rdquo; says Vannelli, &ldquo;and some sellers will not provide a financing timeline because there are several cash buyers waiting for every 10 buyers that need financing.&rdquo;</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>Triple-net Fundamentals</strong></p> <ul> <li> When cap rates decline, listing prices increase</li> <li> Cap rates are an inverse measure of risk</li> <li> Cap rates track Treasury interest rates</li> <li> Longer lease terms mean lower cap rates</li> <li> Tenant&rsquo;s creditworthiness + lease term affect the cap rate</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>Another recent sale for Vannelli was a Caribou Coffee with seven years on the lease term and rental options with rent increases. The buyer, a 1031 investor with financing, put 50 percent down. &ldquo;The 6.5 percent cap rate worked because interest rates were low. The investor felt comfortable that the tenant would renew beyond the seven-year term,&rdquo; she says.</p> <p>The strong demand for triple-net lease properties keeps Vannelli prospecting&mdash;reaching out to developers and tenants she&rsquo;s had relationships with for the past 10 to 15 years, as well as constantly calling developers of new properties. Not surprisingly, commercial brokers are reporting a lack of inventory. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a seller&rsquo;s market,&rdquo; says Calkain Cos.&rsquo; Hipp.</p> <h4> A Generational Asset</h4> <p>In June, Calkain Cos. closed a record-&shy;setting lease on a newly constructed CVS drugstore in Tysons Corner, Va. The drugstore chain constructed the building, which sits on one acre of land. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s not uncommon for the tenant to build the building to get the depreciation in the triple-net lease world,&rdquo; Hipp explains. The property was listed in the fourth quarter of 2013, but as interest rates rose, several 1031 buyers&rsquo; deals fell apart and the sellers took the property off the market. The property was relisted in early 2014 and garnered 10 offers, which were whittled down to three before the sellers opted for a buyer from the Middle East. The property garnered a staggering $24.7 million, or $1,915 per square foot, a record for CVS drugstores and a record low cap rate of 4.97 percent. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a generational asset,&rdquo; Hipp explains. This prized NNN will be &ldquo;passed down to other family members,&rdquo; adds Hipp, who along with two Calkain advisers represented the sellers.</p> <p>The CVS deal follows on the heels of a March transaction in which Calkain Urban Investment Advisors completed the sale of the Dupont Circle Starbucks Building in Washington, D.C., a mixed-use net-lease investment, to an institutional private equity group, for $1,672 per square foot and 4.3 percent cap rate, another record low cap rate for this sector.</p> <p>In Florida, Ralston recently represented a 1031 exchange in which a parcel of family-owned land sold for $3.5 million and the sellers were motivated to avoid a $1 million tax hit. There is an inherently narrow window for these deals, but they are &ldquo;simple and easy to understand,&rdquo; says Ralston. &ldquo;If you live in Florida, you can buy a Walgreens in Texas&mdash;you don&rsquo;t have to see it&mdash;and just collect the rent check. All [the buyer] cares about is the rent and how long the tenant will be there.&rdquo;</p> <p>Still, triple-net leases are not without risks. For instance, an unfavorable environmental report may sink financing, or a tenant may go bankrupt. But as Calkain Cos.&rsquo; Hipp says, &ldquo;The reason triple-net leases work is you have real companies with credit ratings behind them.&rdquo; Against a backdrop of those what-if scenarios and a confluence of lack of opportunities and alternative fixed-income investments, the biggest challenge brokers face is finding enough product to satisfy the demand.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Triple-net leases have their risks, but the biggest investor challenge is simply getting one.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_C_nnn.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=90917">oct14_C_nnn.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_C_nnn_0.jpg?1414506881" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_C_nnn.jpg?1414506900" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/commercial/feature/article/2010/03/commercial-finding-new-stream">Commercial: Finding a New Stream</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/commercial/feature/article/2011/06/signs-life-sale-leasebacks">Signs of Life in Sale-Leasebacks</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/commercial/conversations/article/2011/06/facts-fasb">The Facts on FASB</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Feature Mon, 27 Oct 2014 19:46:34 +0000 mwhite 17564 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Life Doesn't Rise or Fall With Interest Rates http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/economy/article/2014/11/life-doesnt-rise-or-fall-interest-rates <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Housing market can weather the effects of expected mortgage spikes. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/lawrence-yun">Lawrence Yun</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Mortgage rates haven&rsquo;t budged, remaining at historic lows throughout the year amid economic growth that has generated 2.5 million net new jobs over the past 12 months and a record high stock market. But uncertainty looms in light of Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen&rsquo;s announcement that the economic stimulus program known as &ldquo;quantitative easing&rdquo; will halt by year&rsquo;s end. Moreover, an increase in the short-term Fed funds rate is expected by the middle of 2015. The course of U.S. monetary policy, in short, will be less accommodating going forward.</p> <p>In the meantime, perhaps because of geopolitical risks in the Middle East and Ukraine, or because of weaker economic conditions in Europe, a plentiful amount of money has flowed into the safe U.S. bond market, thereby holding interest rates down. Inflation has been low so far, too, rising only by 2 percent, another factor behind the low rates.</p> <p>Sooner or later, though, interest rates will have to rise. From the low 4 percent rate that prevailed for most of this year, the average mortgage rate will likely cross over the 5 percent threshold sometime in 2015 and probably rise to near 6 percent by 2016. Such a change makes homes less affordable, a clear negative for residential sales. But job creation and the accompanying rise in consumer confidence, along with some loosening of&nbsp; underwriting standards, might more than compensate for the rising rates.</p> <p>But what will be the impact on home owners who have locked in super low rates? How resistant will they be to giving those up? That&rsquo;s something we&rsquo;ll be tracking. But if past behavior is a guide, most home owners won&rsquo;t stay put just to hang onto a low mortgage rate.</p> <p>Our own research supports this. Nearly half of recent buyers indicated the desire to have a different-sized home or live in a different neighborhood as the key reason for moving. Having kids and selecting a school district they like makes people move. Another third of recent movers cited changes in a job or &shy;marital status. Retirement was a factor for &shy;others. Only 3 percent mentioned changes in mortgage costs as a reason for moving.</p> <p>Low interest-rate lock-ins seem to matter far less than life cycle events. Even as rates move up, life moves on.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Housing market can weather the effects of expected mortgage spikes.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_economy.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=36425">oct14_NC_economy.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_economy_0.jpg?1414505976" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_NC_economy.jpg?1414505992" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/economy/article/2014/09/confluence-positive-trends">A Confluence of Positive Trends</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/market-pulse/article/2014/11/novemberdecember-2014-market-pulse">November/December 2014 Market Pulse</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/feature/article/2014/07/understanding-and-combatting-rate-lock-in-threat">Understanding and Combatting the Rate Lock-in Threat</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Economy Mon, 27 Oct 2014 19:38:13 +0000 mwhite 17563 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Listing Luxury http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2014/11/listing-luxury <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Three pros who specialize in high-end clients share their winning strategies. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Monday, November 3, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/erica-christoffer">Erica Christoffer</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>High-end real estate is booming. About 9 percent of U.S. buyers bought homes priced at $500,000 and above last year, up from 6 percent in 2010, according to the National Association of REALTORS&reg;&rsquo; <a href="http://www.realtor.org/reports/highlights-from-the-2013-profile-of-home-buyers-and-sellers" target="_blank">Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers</a>.</p> <p>But it takes more than a pricey marketing campaign or rubbing elbows with luxury specialists to succeed in high-end sales, defined by realtor.com&reg; as an entry point between $500,000 and $1 million depending on the region. Unrivaled market expertise and impeccable customer service are core principles that should be mastered. Here&rsquo;s how three practitioners put these fundamentals to work.</p> <h4> The Condo Queen</h4> <p>Karen Rodriguez, a salesperson with Dorsey Alston, REALTORS&reg;, has cultivated her business in Atlanta&rsquo;s prestigious Buckhead neighborhood over the past 11 years. As she landed more and more higher-priced condo sales, developers took notice. In December 2013, Rodriguez won an exclusive agreement to handle sales at The Residences at Mandarin Oriental where she has sold eight units (as of September), with a total volume of $16 million.</p> <p>Rodriguez targets other high-end buildings in downtown Atlanta with direct mailings and advertises in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Because her buyers are financially savvy and detail oriented, they want to understand the developer&rsquo;s financial picture as well as the story behind the building. She provides it all, sending her clients home with numerous pictures and handouts. Her sales team also posts professional photos of their staged listings on Pinterest. Whether or not prospective buyers are on Pinterest, their designers and decorators are, and they&rsquo;ve been a rich source of buyer leads.</p> <h4> The Resident Expert</h4> <p>Over the past 17 years, Minneapolis-based sales associate Gary Bennett with RE/MAX Results has been inside the vast majority of homes in the Lowery Hill and Kenwood neighborhoods&mdash;an area with some of the Twin Cities&rsquo; most sought-after luxury properties.</p> <p>Bennett&rsquo;s familiarity with the housing stock, his nearly two decades as a resident, and his background in older home renovations (he has restored three homes in the area) have propelled his success. Entry-level prices in his market are between $750,000 and $1 million.</p> <p>Bennett&rsquo;s remodeling experience enables him to advise clients on how new projects will factor into the price. Dated kitchens or bathrooms will kill a sale, he says. Bennett finds success with direct mail campaigns, which other practitioners abandoned during the recession. &ldquo;You just can&rsquo;t survive online; this is a people business,&rdquo; Bennett says. &ldquo;I&rsquo;ve taken calls from people gearing up for next year directly related to those mailings.&rdquo;</p> <h4> The Savvy Developer</h4> <p>Carlos Tosca, who cofounded Palmcorp Development Group&nbsp;in 2009, builds homes in Miami with prices ranging from $699,000 to $4.5 million. He saw an opportunity when little was being built right after the recession. That first year, his company did 80 percent rehabs and 20 percent new construction&mdash;but after that, the new construction side took off.</p> <p>Tosca and his partner, Gus De Ribeaux, offer spec homes that include customizable features for virtually every aspect of the design. They add amenities high-end buyers desire, including open floor plans and energy efficient systems, which are features most pre-2006 builds didn&rsquo;t include. They deliver fast, too&mdash;within eight months, while other luxury developments can take two years or longer. &ldquo;As soon as we saw it was working, we raised capital and we abandoned rehabs completely in 2010,&rdquo; he says. In 2013, Palmcorp delivered $13 million in home sales, and Tosca&rsquo;s projecting $24 million for 2014.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Three pros who specialize in high-end clients share their winning strategies.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_SM_luxury.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=78163">oct14_SM_luxury.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_SM_luxury_0.jpg?1414506248" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_SM_luxury.jpg?1414506267" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2014/07/music-buyers-ears">Music to Buyers’ Ears</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/05/28/luxury-sales-heat-up-across-country">Luxury Sales Heat Up Across the Country </a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/05/06/luxury-home-sales-soar-above-historical-average">Luxury Home Sales Soar Above Historical Average</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Feature Mon, 27 Oct 2014 20:26:09 +0000 mwhite 17569 at http://realtormag.realtor.org November/December 2014 Market Pulse http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/market-pulse/article/2014/11/novemberdecember-2014-market-pulse <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Find out how the housing market looks at the close of this year. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/lawrence-yun">Lawrence Yun</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Inventory remains tight, especially at the middle and lower price points. That trend reflects fewer distressed sales and steady appreciation, hurting affordability. First-time buyers are lagging and, in a shift, investors are starting to retreat from the market.</p> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_NC_mp_supply.jpg" style="width: 500px; height: 395px;" /></p> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_NC_mp_confidence.jpg" style="width: 500px; height: 592px;" /><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_NC_mp_transactions.jpg" style="width: 500px; height: 455px;" /><br /> &nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Find out how the housing market looks at the close of this year.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_marketpulse.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=93406">oct14_NC_marketpulse.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_marketpulse_0.jpg?1414505769" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_NC_marketpulse.jpg?1414505786" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Market Pulse Mon, 27 Oct 2014 18:57:25 +0000 mwhite 17560 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Reshoring Takes Off http://realtormag.realtor.org/commercial/conversations/article/2014/11/reshoring-takes <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Commercial demand is on the upswing as U.S. manufacturing picks up. Jason Tolliver, Indianapolis-based regional vice president for Cassidy Turley, weighs in. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/mariwyn-evans">Mariwyn Evans</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>In recent decades, &ldquo;industrial&rdquo; has been synonymous with &ldquo;warehouse.&rdquo; Not anymore. The return of manufacturing activity to the United States, slyly nicknamed &ldquo;reshoring,&rdquo; is expanding the need for production space for the first time in decades. And the demand will continue to grow. Fifty-four percent of U.S.-based manufacturers with annual sales greater than $1 billion said they were either planning or strongly considering bringing some manufacturing back to the United States, according to a late fall 2013 survey by Boston Consulting Group. The Reshoring Initiative, a group that works to return manufacturing to the United States, estimates that 15 percent of new manufacturing jobs added between 2010 and 2013 were jobs that had previously been moved overseas. The trend bodes well for commercial real estate &shy;professionals.</p> <p><strong>What&rsquo;s fueling manufacturing&rsquo;s return to this country?</strong></p> <p>There are five or six key drivers, in no particular order: competitive labor costs as wages rise in China; proximity to customers, suppliers, and research and development; lower transportation costs; declining energy costs; need for better quality controls; and stronger legal protections of intellectual property in the United States.</p> <p><strong>How does this manufacturing resurgence translate into commercial demand?</strong></p> <p>Industrial absorption has been improving for the last few years. Cassidy Turley&rsquo;s research shows that national industrial vacancies dropped from 10 percent in 2010 to 8 percent in the third quarter of 2014. Increased occupancy rates in manufacturing accounted for nearly one-quarter of that gain. Absorption is strong even though the footprint for most manufacturers is shrinking, according to Energy Information Administration data. The EIA estimates that at least 10.2 billion square feet of manufacturing space will be needed in 2020.</p> <p><strong>Is most of this new demand coming from larger companies?</strong></p> <p>Yes. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics cited in a 2013 Congressional Research Services report, only 10 percent of new jobs in manufacturing since 2005 were created by small and mid-sized companies, compared with approximately 20 percent of new jobs in the professional and services areas.</p> <p><strong>How is the greater reliance on technology affecting demand for manufacturing space?</strong></p> <p>Many existing manufacturing facilities are too old and too big&mdash;functionally obsolete. So companies that are reshoring manufacturing are turning to new construction. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, manufacturing construction had increased to 122 percent of its prerecession levels by 2013.</p> <p>The location of much of the new manufacturing is also changing. BLS research found that almost 80 percent of manufacturing job growth since the recession has taken place in the top 100 U.S. metros. When you focus in on advanced manufacturing, which relies on computers, automation, and cutting-edge materials and processes, the number of new jobs in major metros jumps to over 95 percent. Educated talent wants to live in or near cities, so manufacturers who need that talent have to follow.&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Commercial demand is on the upswing as U.S. manufacturing picks up. Jason Tolliver, Indianapolis-based regional vice president for Cassidy Turley, weighs in.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_C_reshore.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=88460">oct14_C_reshore.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_C_reshore_0.jpg?1414506659" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_C_reshore.jpg?1414506675" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/solutions/article/2011/10/send-it-overseas">Send It Overseas?</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/home-and-design/feature/article/2014/07/building-for-future">Building for the Future</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/commercial/feature/article/2012/03/five-ways-well-work-differently-10-years-now">Five Ways We&#039;ll Work Differently 10 Years From Now</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Conversations Mon, 27 Oct 2014 19:59:23 +0000 mwhite 17566 at http://realtormag.realtor.org The Fallout From Fraud http://realtormag.realtor.org/law-and-ethics/law/article/2014/11/fallout-from-fraud <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> When an agent undertakes rogue activities, could a broker be deemed a responsible party? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/thomas-h-pyper">Thomas H. Pyper</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>It&rsquo;s a concern all brokers have. An agent gets in trouble while acting outside the scope of his or her duties, and the broker gets dragged into a lawsuit as a responsible party.</p> <p>A recent decision by the Ohio Supreme Court addressed this issue in a case involving a fraud allegation against an agent, who maintained a property management company and a remodeling operation without the broker&rsquo;s knowledge.</p> <p>In a situation like this, it&rsquo;s critical that the broker be able to say whether or not he knew about the agent&rsquo;s actions, because if the broker didn&rsquo;t and couldn&rsquo;t know what was going on, then he at least has a defensible position that he should not share in the liability for the agent&rsquo;s actions. But what if the broker is precluded from even arguing that he had no knowledge of what was going on?</p> <p>That&rsquo;s exactly the situation brokers in Ohio were facing when a state appellate court ruled last year that a broker, by having participated in the agent&rsquo;s commissions on the transaction, wasn&rsquo;t allowed to make the case to a jury that he didn&rsquo;t know about what was happening and that the agent was acting outside the scope of her duties. The Ohio Supreme Court in&nbsp; August reversed the appellate court ruling, and now the liability issue is once again consistent with the law in other states.</p> <p>NAR and the Ohio Association of REALTORS&reg; played key roles in the victory. NAR filed a friend-of-the-court brief that made it clear the Ohio appellate court decision was restrictive to a degree not seen in neighboring states and possibly the rest of the country. An OAR analysis showed how deeply at odds the decision was with related laws and decisions in the state.</p> <p>At the heart of the issue is the broker&rsquo;s participation in the commissions. The appellate court ruling made the broker sharing in the commissions tantamount to having responsibility over&nbsp;the agent&rsquo;s actions, regardless of whether the actions were within the agent&rsquo;s scope of duties. But the Supreme Court&mdash;rightly&mdash;made it clear that participation in commissions is not in and of itself sufficient to make the broker liable for actions he doesn&rsquo;t even know about and shouldn&rsquo;t necessarily even know about, since the actions weren&rsquo;t within the agent&rsquo;s duties.</p> <p>In this case, the agent helped a client buy several properties for rentals and, as part of their arrangement, the agent also agreed to use her remodeling operation to fix up the properties and her management operations to oversee the rentals. After the properties were acquired, the agent did few if any repairs and otherwise failed to perform as promised. When the properties generated no income, the owner sued the agent for fraud and included the broker for failing to exercise oversight of the agent. But the broker had no knowledge of the agent&rsquo;s rogue activities. In fact, the owner&rsquo;s attorney never even made a claim to the contrary, and there was some evidence that the agent tried to conceal her actions from the broker.</p> <p>While the decision by the Ohio Supreme Court affects only cases in Ohio, had the appellate court ruling stood, the implications could have been much broader. Simply by taking up the case, the Ohio Supreme Court was signaling the importance of the issue. As similar liability claims are made elsewhere, it&rsquo;s likely the courts in other states would consider the legal rationale applied by the appellate court, and that legal reasoning could find its way into other decisions.</p> <p>Ohio brokers not involved in the case have said, had the ruling stood, they would have left the business. Why? Because the ruling opened the possibility of potentially ruinous legal exposure and adverse publicity from actions taken independently by their agents. To make matters worse, they would have no ability to show that an agent wasn&rsquo;t acting on their behalf. No one can run a business with those sorts of limitations. But with help from OAR and NAR, the Supreme Court reversed this troubling ruling.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>When an agent undertakes rogue activities, could a broker be deemed a responsible party?</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LE_fraud.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=39233">oct14_LE_fraud.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LE_fraud_0.jpg?1414505899" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_LE_fraud.jpg?1414505915" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-link field-field-links"> <div class="field-label">External Links:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.realtor.org//programs/legal-action-program" rel="nofollow">NAR Legal Action Program</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Law Mon, 27 Oct 2014 19:07:42 +0000 mwhite 17561 at http://realtormag.realtor.org The New Residential NNN http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/briefs/article/2014/11/new-residential-nnn <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Learn why interest in triple-net leases is increasing for investors of residential real estate. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/paula-hess">Paula Hess </a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Although triple-net leases have been the exclusive domain of commercial real estate, the same low rates of return on fixed-income investments are spurring interest in structuring residential properties as triple-net leases.</p> <p>&ldquo;People are looking for nontraditional investments,&rdquo; says Peter Julian, CEO of Triple Net Houses Inc., a Dayton, Ohio&ndash;based company that offers investors 5-year triple-net leases that earn as much as 8 percent cap rates&mdash;minus the hassles of fixing a clogged toilet. &ldquo;The typical investor is someone who was reluctant to invest in real estate, but now that investors can do so passively, they&rsquo;re more willing.&rdquo;</p> <p>The company purchases and rehabilitates homes and then sells the home to an investor, essentially leasing the house from the investor as a triple-net lease, Julian explains. For instance, an investor could purchase a home for $50,000 and earn $4,000 or $333 per month on the investment. &ldquo;The investor is paid regardless of whether the rent is paid,&rdquo; explains Julian. The tenant pays rent and utilities; Triple Net Houses maintains the homes.</p> <p>Commercial brokers are circumspect about triple-net leases in the residential sector. &ldquo;Residential net lease deals are more of a financing structure than a real estate transaction,&rdquo; says Gary Ralston. Time will tell if NNN will gain traction in residential sectors, but, Julian explains, &ldquo;This arrangement works better in the Midwest, where costs are lower. Rents do not go up with [home] prices, and the rent for a $60,000 home is the same as for a $120,000 home.&rdquo;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Learn why interest in triple-net leases is increasing for investors of residential real estate.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_C_NNN_res.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=111650">oct14_C_NNN_res.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_C_NNN_res_0.jpg?1414520887" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_C_NNN_res.jpg?1414520906" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/commercial/feature/article/2014/11/hunting-for-nnns">Hunting for NNNs</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2012/10/04/investors-clear-backlogs-snap-up-single-family-rentals">Investors Clear Backlogs, Snap Up Single-Family Rentals </a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Briefs Mon, 27 Oct 2014 19:52:11 +0000 mwhite 17565 at http://realtormag.realtor.org When Stable Homes Are Far From Reach http://realtormag.realtor.org/first-person/powerofr/article/2014/11/when-stable-homes-are-far-from-reach <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> These practitioners refuse to look away from their neighbors with the most dire needs. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/graham-wood">Graham Wood</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>At this time of year, many real estate professionals come together to support charitable works, but <a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/champions-for-better-life">the Good Neighbor Award winners</a> aren&rsquo;t the only REALTORS&reg; who take it further with their year-round dedication to community service. The priority for these REALTORS&reg; is helping those who are having difficulty finding or keeping a roof over their heads, including fellow real estate practitioners facing major setbacks.</p> <blockquote> <p>Coldwell Banker Gundaker&nbsp; |&nbsp; St. Louis<br /> <strong>Organization she founded</strong>: REALTORS&reg; Housing Assistance Fund<br /> <a href="http://stlouisrhaf.org" target="_blank">stlouisrhaf.org</a><br /> <strong>Active since</strong>: 1989<br /> <strong>What it does</strong>: Awards grants to local charities that help homeless find housing<br /> <strong>How much it has raised</strong>: $700,000 since its inception</p> </blockquote> <h4> Ellen O&rsquo;Brien, GRI</h4> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_por1.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 215px; float: left; margin: 3px;" />O&rsquo;Brien&rsquo;s story: &ldquo;If you go to some of these homeless shelters, you wouldn&rsquo;t believe how many men stay the night there,&rdquo; O&rsquo;Brien says. That&rsquo;s what motivated her to start the RHAF in 1989, when she was the president of the St. Louis Association of REALTORS&reg;. For 25 years, RHAF has been raising money for homeless organizations that help the elderly stay in their homes, put homeless pregnant women into safe housing, and reach out to at-risk youth.</p> <h4> Diane Disbrow, ABR, GRI</h4> <blockquote> <p>Bayshore Agency&nbsp; |&nbsp; Little Egg Harbor, N.J.<br /> <strong>Organization she&rsquo;s involved with</strong>: Atlantic City Rescue Mission<br /> <a href="http://acrescuemission.org" target="_blank">acrescuemission.org</a><br /> <strong>Active since</strong>: 2008<br /> <strong>What it does</strong>: Provides meals, clothes, and shelter for the homeless</p> </blockquote> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_por2.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 215px; float: left; margin: 3px;" />Disbrow&rsquo;s story: Disbrow is the go-to person for donations to ACRM in Atlantic City, N.J. After she started organizing clothing drives and serving hot meals to the homeless at ACRM, she broadened her outreach: getting the Girl Scout troop she leads to run two major food drives per year for the mission. She also rounds up donations from clients who are decluttering or downsizing and makes her state association&rsquo;s convention&mdash;taking place across the street from ACRM&mdash;a hub for donations.</p> <blockquote> <p>Virtual Properties Realty&nbsp; |&nbsp; Duluth, Ga.<br /> <strong>Organization she founded</strong>: Real Estate Agents in Need<br /> <a href="http://raincorp.org" target="_blank">raincorp.org</a><br /> <strong>Active since</strong>: 2011<br /> <strong>What it does</strong>: Provides financial assistance to struggling Georgia REALTORS&reg; and their families<br /> <strong>How many people it helps</strong>: 300 a year</p> </blockquote> <h4> Betty Jones, ABR, SRES</h4> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_por3.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 217px; margin: 3px; float: left;" />Jones&rsquo; story: Jones formed RAIN after learning about a similar support group for police officers facing hardship. The network raises funds for local REALTORS&reg; through community events.&nbsp; Recently RAIN helped an agent with breast cancer who fell behind on her bills. The utility company threatened to shut off her power, but RAIN paid her bill so she had one less worry at home. &ldquo;It is the most wonderful feeling to know that I can help other people,&rdquo; Jones says.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>These practitioners refuse to look away from their neighbors with the most dire needs.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_POR_impact.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=41673">oct14_POR_impact.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_POR_impact_0.jpg?1414515527" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_POR_impact.jpg?1414515552" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2008/11/good-neighbor-lei-barry-force-for-homeless">Good Neighbor Lei Barry: A Force for the Homeless</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2010/11/good-neighbor-cathie-mcgregor-critchlow-giving-women-second-cha">Good Neighbor Cathie McGregor Critchlow: Giving Women a Second Chance</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2007/11/good-neighbor-virginia-ferry-mission-accomplished">Good Neighbor Virginia Ferry: Mission Accomplished</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/feature/article/2008/11/reaping-rewards-brokers-give-back">Reaping the Rewards: Brokers Give Back</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> #PowerofR Mon, 27 Oct 2014 20:03:52 +0000 mwhite 17567 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Champions for a Better Life http://realtormag.realtor.org/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/champions-for-better-life <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Meet 10 REALTORS® who demonstrate the extraordinary power of one. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/sara-geimer">Sara Geimer</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Opening your wallet or doing charitable work to help struggling members of your community is always commendable. For the 2014 Good Neighbor Award winners, giving back is a way of life. When they see a hole in the social or economic safety net, they don&rsquo;t ask a lot of questions; they dive in to fix it. Since last year alone, the winners have put in a combined 5,000 volunteer hours and raised millions of dollars.</p> <p><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/renaissance-woman-lowcountry">Jane B. Locke</a> eases the burden on parents of children with disabilities.</p> <p><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/restoring-smiles">Tricia Carlisle-Northcutt</a> makes possible free health care for children.</p> <p><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/place-call-home">Edward R. Pompeian</a> opened a recovery house for transplant patients.</p> <p><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/bridging-child-care-gap">Rosemary Tran Lauer</a> funds quality child care for low-income familes.</p> <p><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/hearts-running-full">Paul Wilson</a> helps save lives through an ultramarathon.</p> <p>REALTOR&reg; Magazine&rsquo;s Good Neighbor Awards is celebrating its 15th year of recognizing REALTORS&reg; who make an extraordinary impact on others through volunteering. As a result of the Good Neighbor Awards and its related programs, including Volunteering Works, we have honored more than 175 REALTORS&reg; and supported their charities through more than $1 million in donations.</p> <h4> Honorable Mentions</h4> <p>The 2014 Good Neighbors and honorable mentions channel their passions in various directions, but they share one goal: Make the world a better place. The five Good Neighbor honorable mentions, who each will receive a $2,500 grant for their charities, are listed below.</p> <p><strong><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/honorable-mention/2014/09/jill-dover">Jill Dover</a></strong> | Sherwood Realty, Grand Rapids, Mich.</p> <p>Dover is president of Senior Sing A-Long, which enriches the lives of seniors in care facilities through free concerts, music therapy, and customized playlists. Dover coordinates 150 performances a month for 8,000 seniors in eight counties. She serves 67 long-term care facilities, veterans&rsquo; homes, and rehab facilities. <a href="http://seniorsingalong.org" target="_blank">seniorsingalong.org</a></p> <p><strong><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/honorable-mention/2014/09/gail-doxie">Gail Doxie</a></strong> | RE/MAX Realty Group, Fort Myers, Fla.</p> <p>In 2007, Doxie founded the Miles of Smiles Foundation, which offers equine-assisted therapy for veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Doxie, who holds a master&rsquo;s degree in mental health counseling, helps veterans rebuild trust and confidence through their work with horses. <a href="http://milesranch.org" target="_blank">milesranch.org</a></p> <p><strong><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/honorable-mention/2014/09/robert-j-fitzsimmons">Robert J. Fitzsimmons</a></strong> | Gateway Arms Realty Corp., Staten Island, N.Y.&nbsp;</p> <p>Since 1981, Fitzsimmons has been a tireless volunteer for the Seamen&rsquo;s Society for Children and Families, which finds foster homes for at least 300 New York City youths each year and offers a range of related education programs. Fitzsimmons oversees the organization&rsquo;s annual calendar drive, a fundraiser that has raised almost $500,000 over the past 33 years. <a href="http://seamenssociety.org" target="_blank">seamenssociety.org</a></p> <p><strong><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/honorable-mention/2014/09/dorothy-gokey">Dorothy (Dottie) Gokey</a></strong> | Gokey Real Estate, Clinton, N.Y.</p> <p>Gokey is president of The Business Training Institute, which provides educational and support services to high-risk children and families in Utica, N.Y., including new immigrants and refugees. Gokey launched a series of family workshops to address such issues as bullying and dropout prevention.</p> <p><strong><a href="/good-neighbor-awards/honorable-mention/2014/09/beth-smoot">Beth Smoot</a> </strong>| Fonville Morisey, Raleigh, N.C.&nbsp;</p> <p>Smoot and her business&nbsp;partner saw a need for a&nbsp;&rdquo;food pantry for furniture&rdquo; and put their staging expertise and business acumen to work. Since creating&nbsp;The Green Chair Project in 2010, they have furnished 624 households for people in need, including those transitioning from homelessness or incarceration, and diverted 577 tons of furnishings from landfills. <a href="http://thegreenchair.org" target="_blank">thegreenchair.org</a></p> <h4> Our Sponsors&nbsp;</h4> <p><a href="http://welcome.libertymutual.com/nar" target="_blank">Liberty Mutual Insurance</a> is the primary sponsor of REALTOR&reg; Magazine&rsquo;s Good Neighbor Awards. Liberty Mutual has been a REALTOR Benefits&reg; Partner for more than a decade, serving as NAR&rsquo;s exclusive partner for auto, home, and renters insurance. Liberty Mutual is one of the world&rsquo;s leading and most trusted insurance carriers. For more than 100 years, its mission has been to provide comprehensive, quality insurance products that help its customers live safer, more secure lives. Realtor.com&reg; delivers consumer real estate&rsquo;s largest and most accurate database of homes for sale and rent available anywhere. The home and rental listings on realtor.com&reg; and realtor.com&reg; mobile apps are pulled directly from over 800 local MLSs, with most listings updated every 15 minutes. Plus, realtor.com&reg; has a huge database of property values for millions of homes nationwide and is the only national site that offers a complete database of over 1 million REALTORS&reg;.&nbsp;</p> <h4> Our 2014 Judges</h4> <p>Kimberly A. Allard-&shy;Moccia,&nbsp;AHWD, e-PRO, GREEN, GRI, NAR Member Communications Committee chair; Martin Edwards, ALC, CCIM, NAR past president; Patti E. Lawton, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, SFR, SRES, NAR Housing Opportunity Committee chair; Robert Maloney, senior vice president&ndash;affinity marketing, Liberty Mutual Insurance; Michael C. McGrew, CRB, CRS, NAR treasurer; Barbara O&rsquo;Connor, former chief marketing officer, Move Inc.; Beth L. Peerce, NAR vice president; Chris Polychron, CRS, GRI, NAR president-elect</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Meet 10 REALTORS&reg; who demonstrate the extraordinary power of one.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_gna.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=31522">oct14_gna.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_gna_0.jpg?1414527213" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_gna.jpg?1414527236" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Good Neighbor Awards Fri, 24 Oct 2014 18:24:52 +0000 Lily Oberman 17540 at http://realtormag.realtor.org InCredible Locals http://realtormag.realtor.org/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/11/incredible-locals <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Being an ambassador for your community is a core strength for real estate professionals. The Street Cred project was launched to highlight those who take it to the next level. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/meg-white">Meg White</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Virtually every real estate professional has local knowledge above and beyond the ordinary. Part local historian, part zoning and development nerd, part community calendar, you are a treasure trove of information about your neighborhood. As experts on what&rsquo;s happening in your communities, whether it&rsquo;s what time the farmer&rsquo;s market opens or when that large corporate relocation will happen, real estate pros are passionate evangelists. You&rsquo;ve got &ldquo;street cred,&rdquo; so simply by sharing your excitement about what makes your home town an awesome place to live, you convert outsiders as well as long-time residents.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>Don&rsquo;t miss out!</strong>&nbsp; November 30 is the deadline for submitting entries to the Street Cred Video Contest. There&rsquo;s still time to get yours in! <a href="/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/09/announcing-our-street-cred-video-contest">Learn more about the rules and prizes here.</a></p> </blockquote> <p>To showcase this hallmark of great practitioners, REALTOR&reg; Magazine teamed up with home buyer education platform Doorsteps and launched the Street Cred project. The result is a growing series of profiles that offer lessons and inspiration from those most deeply rooted in the places they work. Read the full stories <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/first-person/street-cred/" target="_blank">here</a>, and submit your own story <a href="/first-person/street-cred-submission-form">here</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><a href="/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/01/providence-pride">Joy Riley</a> produces 1-minute videos that showcase distinctive living spaces in her town&rsquo;s neighborhoods.</strong></p> <p>&ldquo;With the city&rsquo;s concentration of industrial and multiunit properties, I was inspired by the adaptive reuse of these properties into residences, artists&rsquo; live/work spaces, and small business spaces. I love being a part of preserving our landscape while restoring and adapting space to meet our community&rsquo;s needs.&rdquo; <em>&mdash;Joy Riley Broker-owner, Westcott Properties, Providence, R.I.</em></p> <p><strong><a href="/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/04/ripple-effect-community-involvement">Chad Thompson</a> is involved in civic organizations, bike-friendly initiatives, and special events that promote his neighborhood.</strong></p> <p>&ldquo;As the only REALTOR&reg; at these events, I got to know businesspeople in different industries that have a lot of the same challenges I do. These other professionals are always asking me, &lsquo;How&rsquo;s the market doing in Broad Ripple?&rsquo;&thinsp;&rdquo; <em>&mdash;Chad Thompson Broker, Carpenter, REALTORS&reg;, Indianapolis&nbsp;&nbsp; </em></p> <p><strong><a href="/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/01/baroness-hyde-park">Marki Lemons-Ryhal </a>uses location-based social media to showcase her local knowledge and to make community connections.</strong></p> <p>&ldquo;There are more mobile devices on Earth than there are people! Foursquare check-ins connect me to the community and to business owners. People share, like, retweet, and comment on my posts. I have closed transactions as a result of check-ins, not to mention getting discounts, bottles of wine, and a free loaner car for a week.&rdquo;<em>&mdash;Marki Lemons-Ryhal, Broker-partner, Keller Williams Realty CCG, Chicago</em></p> <p><strong><a href="/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/06/keeping-his-neighborhood-afloat">Brian Gabree </a>created the &ldquo;Canoe to the Zoo&rdquo; event to draw attention to a fun feature of his often-overlooked neighborhood.</strong></p> <p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;ve learned a good bit of history of the area from community leaders. So now, when showing people North Shore, I can fill in the story. It&rsquo;s more than just showing homes... It&rsquo;s a sense of belonging and pride in a community with a cool background that has so much to offer.&rdquo; <em>&mdash;Brian Gabree, Sales associate, Third and Main Realty, Jacksonville, Fla.</em></p> <p><strong><a href="/first-person/street-cred/article/2014/02/view-from-her-porch">Sharon Steele</a> found that promoting area businesses online helped establish her as a go-to resource.</strong></p> <p>&ldquo;The more generous I am in sharing, the more I personally benefit. When I started in real estate, social media was just a free platform for me to get the word out. Now there&rsquo;s not a business in town I don&rsquo;t know, and my connections have really made a difference. When you go to sell a house, you&rsquo;re also selling the town.&rdquo; <em>&mdash;Sharon Steele, Sales associate, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage Westfield West, Westfield, N.J.</em></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Being an ambassador for your community is a core strength for real estate professionals. The Street Cred project was launched to highlight those who take it to the next level.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_FP_streetcred.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=70645">oct14_FP_streetcred.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_FP_streetcred_0.jpg?1414533737" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_FP_streetcred.jpg?1414533755" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Street Cred Fri, 24 Oct 2014 17:49:02 +0000 Lily Oberman 17539 at http://realtormag.realtor.org The Good Neighbor Way http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/nar-president/article/2014/10/good-neighbor-way <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> A true professional works in a skilled and caring way for the betterment of all.   </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Friday, October 24, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/steve-brown">Steve Brown</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Many REALTORS&reg; regularly step up as volunteers in their community. The <a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/champions-for-better-life">Good Neighbor Award winners profiled in this issue</a> are in a rarified class. These women and men are helping the most vulnerable in their midst in some extraordinary ways. In many respects, this is what being a true professional is all about: working in a skilled and caring manner for the betterment of all.&nbsp;I salute them.</p> <p>One benefit of serving as president of NAR this year is witnessing the work of REALTORS&reg; from across the country and our peers around the world.&nbsp;In the United States, our work as REALTORS&reg; has a major impact on the economy, with real estate spending accounting for nearly 20 percent of the GDP. Through our work in home ownership, the middle class is strengthened&mdash;and a strong middle class lends stability to our society.&nbsp;</p> <p>Our work also has a significant influence on government. Because we know every community in which&nbsp;we work&mdash;we&rsquo;ve driven every street and collectively may well have sold nearly every property in our communities at one time or another&mdash;we know the people who vote and the issues that matter to them. Secondly, we have made it our mission and responsibility to promote and protect their American dream of private property ownership.</p> <p>Such work is commendable, yet we must seek to improve what we do and how we do it. We need to be more knowledgeable on real estate issues than consumers, more technologically adept than our customers, and more skilled in negotiating a transaction than our clients if we want to remain at the center of the process of helping people buy and sell property.&nbsp;</p> <p>Improvement means constantly adapting to our changing business environment. It means creating new relationships&mdash;whether in expanding our networking sphere or establishing new strategic partnerships. And it means constantly fine-tuning how we communicate information with our clients.</p> <p>As we go forward, let us not only respond to change but also be open to initiating those changes that will make us more professional. Let us, as REALTORS&reg;, continually raise the bar so as to become more knowledgeable, more helpful, and more professional, and thus good neighbors to all.</p> <p>I started out my year as NAR president with the slogan &ldquo;the time is now.&rdquo; As my term ends, that slogan seems as appropriate today as it was at the beginning. The time really is now for our industry to take the initiative to become, well, with apologies to my fifth-grade English teacher, &ldquo;more better.&rdquo; There, I said it. So here&rsquo;s to the ongoing journey of being more and being better.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>A true professional works in a skilled and caring way for the betterment of all.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2012/05/22/1978-president-tom-grant-left-advocacy-his-legacy">1978 President Tom Grant Left Advocacy as His Legacy</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> NAR President Fri, 24 Oct 2014 17:44:02 +0000 Lily Oberman 17538 at http://realtormag.realtor.org A Rollercoaster Day http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/editor/article/2014/11/rollercoaster-day <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The risks and rewards of working in real estate converge unexpectedly during a one-day visit. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/phil-chiles">Phil Chiles</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>An intense mix of emotions filled the editorial meeting I attended for this issue of REALTOR&reg; Magazine at the end of September. All of us awoke that day to learn that real estate agent Beverly Carter, from Pulaski County, Arkansas, was <a href="/daily-news/2014/09/30/beverly-carter-you-left-legacy">found dead after a scheduled property showing</a>. The kidnapping and killing of one of our own reminds us of how fragile life is and how dangerous our job can be. I hope this tragedy serves as a wake-up call for everyone in the business. &nbsp;</p> <p>But Sept. 30 was also an exciting day for the real estate industry with the announcement that Move Inc. which operates realtor.com&reg;, would be <a href="/news-and-commentary/feature/article/2014/09/news-corp-bets-realtors">acquired by Rupert Murdoch-led News Corp</a>. Expectations are high that the deal will be transformative. In the words of NAR President Steve Brown, &ldquo;This partnership will shape the future of real estate.&rdquo;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>Personally, it was a rewarding day for me as I got to share my thoughts about the state of the business and association activities as this issue&rsquo;s guest editor. This past year for me has been all about the Power of R. As the 2014 president of the Illinois Association of REALTORS&reg; and a team leader for The Real Estate Group in Springfield, Ill, the mantra was my inaugural conference theme, which carried through 2014 and was then, to my delight, was adopted by the National Association of REALTORS&reg;.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>For me, the Power of R manifests in a number of ways. First and foremost is the power we wield through RPAC contributions. Our investments shape the way policy is developed at all levels of government and helps us to elect like-minded officials who become part of the REALTOR&reg; Party.&nbsp; In Illinois we also have&nbsp;<u>R</u>VOICE, our local advocacy program, which has had a huge impact on the business of real estate at the local government level. The Power of R also is also voiced through our ethics and our professionalism, and it has been showcased on the last page of this magazine all this year through <a href="/first-person/powerofr/article/2014/11/when-stable-homes-are-far-from-reach">profiles of REALTORS&reg; who demonstrate their impact</a><em>.</em></p> <p>As individual REALTORS&reg;, our volunteer activities bring the Power of R to life. My longtime commitment has been to Habitat for Humanity. This year the Illinois Association of REALTORS&reg; funded and built three Habitat homes across the state and I am proud to be working with many colleagues on the REALTOR&reg; build in New Orleans during the REALTORS&reg; Conference &amp; Expo in November. Those efforts signal our concern about affordable housing in our communities to consumers and show our willingness to step up and care for one another.&nbsp;Whether it&rsquo;s Habitat or other worthwhile causes, REALTORS&reg; have their fingers on the pulse of their communities. None are more committed than the <a href="/good-neighbor-awards/article/2014/11/champions-for-better-life">Good Neighbor award winners featured in this issue</a> for the spectacular impact they have made on those around them<em>.</em> Reading their stories gives me an extra boost of pride about the REALTOR&reg; family. Together we make a difference.&nbsp; I hope you feel the same.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>The risks and rewards of working in real estate converge unexpectedly during a one-day visit.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_guest_ed.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=65760">oct14_NC_guest_ed.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_guest_ed_0.jpg?1414169105" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_NC_guest_ed.jpg?1414169130" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/editor/article/2014/09/following-her-own-star">Following Her Own Star</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/editor/article/2014/07/road-moment">The Road to This Moment</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Editor Thu, 23 Oct 2014 17:24:48 +0000 17525 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Don't Leave the Door Open to Danger http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/commentary/article/2014/11/dont-leave-door-open-danger <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Open houses put agents at risk of being harmed and should be curtailed. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/renee-porsia">Renee Porsia</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>We purchase alarm systems to keep strangers out of our homes. But in our workaday lives, we turn around and open the front door to invite anyone and everyone in, no questions asked? There&rsquo;s something wrong with this picture. The contradiction is exactly why open houses make no sense.</p> <p>The two recent murders of real estate agents during showings in Ohio should trigger some serious thinking: Do the benefits of open houses for home owners justify us putting our lives on the line? The visitors who go to open houses usually haven&rsquo;t even spoken to a mortgage lender yet; they have no clue how much the home owner is asking; and chances are they won&rsquo;t buy the home after touring it.</p> <p>One thing open houses definitely do is put people&rsquo;s lives in danger. When you tell every John Doe that he has the next four hours to come right on in, you risk becoming a victim. This insanity needs to stop.</p> <p>The same goes for real estate agents who drop everything to run out to an empty house for a first consultation with a potential client. You wouldn&rsquo;t advise your children to go on a job interview in an empty house, would you? So why are you doing it?</p> <p>Agents need to start changing their business standards. When a prospective client contacts you and asks to see a home, an appointment needs to be scheduled for them to come into your office first. If only a few of us do that, buyers will continue to beat us up and demand that we run out to show them homes that we don&rsquo;t know if they are even qualified to buy. But if we all make it office policy that nobody sees homes without first coming into the office, consumers would get a better view of the value of our services. Aside from it being a safer practice, you would get to sit down with the client, explain the necessary documents to them, explain the services you are going to provide to them, and ask them to hire you.</p> <p>I know there are agents and brokers out there who will argue that open houses are an avenue to meeting new clients and running out to show a home to a stranger is just part of the business. I respect their opinion, but for me, what&rsquo;s more important is eliminating the risk of being hurt&mdash;or worse&mdash;at an open house or an empty house. We can say no to &ldquo;stranger danger.&rdquo;</p> <p>If you want to be paid the big bucks, you don&rsquo;t get there by being incautious. Chasing buyers all over an empty house to explain legal documentsis not very professional, nor is it safe. How do you expect the public to take us seriously when we don&rsquo;t respect ourselves or use our time wisely by saying no to a stranger who demands we run out to show them a home first before giving us any information about themselves?</p> <p>Before we had the technology we had today, holding an open house was one of the best ways to try and get new business, though no less dangerous then. But we have so many new ways of attracting new business via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedln, and other outlets. Buyers have so many ways to see a home right in the palm of their hands that it really makes the need for open houses much less pressing.&nbsp;</p> <p>Not only would halting open houses create a safer work environment for all of us, it would also make us feel like we have more control over our business. That&rsquo;s an empowering thought, wouldn&rsquo;t you agree?</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Open houses put agents at risk of being harmed and should be curtailed.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_openhouses.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=43095">oct14_NC_openhouses.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_openhouses_0.jpg?1414175718" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_NC_openhouses.jpg?1414175734" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/handouts-for-customers/for-sellers/open-house-safety-tips">Open House Safety Tips</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2014/09/safety-talk-you-need-have-clients">The Safety Talk You Need to Have With Clients</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2010/09/real-estate-safety-stories-how-i-stay-safe">Real Estate Safety Stories: &#039;How I Stay Safe&#039;</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Commentary Thu, 23 Oct 2014 18:12:27 +0000 Lily Oberman 17530 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Notes From Readers: Our Awesome Power http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/letters/article/2014/11/notes-from-readers-our-awesome-power <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Readers write in about data responsibilities, safety concerns, and more. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <!--paging_filter--><p>Daniel Katz <a href="/news-and-commentary/letters/article/2014/09/notes-from-readers-rules-for-all">brings up one of the most important issues</a> facing REALTORS&reg; today in the September/October 2014 issue of REALTOR&reg; Magazine. We not only provide info to third-party portals, we may face&nbsp;fines and other sanctions for the info not being current or correct.&nbsp; Let&rsquo;s stop the hemorrhaging of our own livelihood. We are an awesome power to be reckoned with. <em>&mdash;Sheila Walker, Keller Williams of the Emerald Coast, Navarre, Fla.</em></p> <h4> Watching Website Accessibility</h4> <p>Editor&#39;s Note: Last issue&#39;s article, &quot;<a href="/law-and-ethics/feature/article/2014/09/websites-public-accommodations">Websites: Public Accomodations</a>?&quot; drew concerns from readers about whether practitioners need to make any immediate changes to their sites to comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act. NAR Legal Affairs says not at this time.</p> <p>The question of whether an entity that operates a &ldquo;place of public accommodation&rdquo; under the ADA must also make any website it operates ADA-accessible remains unresolved.&nbsp;As the article points out, in July 2010&nbsp;the U.S. Department of Justice issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that took the position that websites operated by entities that are public accommodations under the act must be compliant with the ADA, and sought comment on that issue and on the development of regulations that would implement that requirement. Since the issuance of this notice, the department has not issued, or even proposed, any regulations, and recently the department announced a further delay of issuing proposed regulations until at least March 2015. Several courts have concluded that websites need not be ADA-compliant un&shy;der various factual circumstances, while a few others have reached the opposite conclusion. The department has obtained consent agreements in several enforcement matters regarding prominent websites that were not ADA-accessible. In the meantime, NAR members may wish to be attentive to future court cases that may address the issue, and should anticipate seeing proposed regulations sometime next year.</p> <h4> Beverly Carter: She Was &#39;an Angel on Earth&#39;</h4> <p>The September murder of Arkansas real estate agent Beverly Carter has sparked debate among real estate pros about how to stay safer on the job. <em>&mdash;<a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/2014/10/01/beverly-carter-she-was-an-angel-on-earth/" target="_blank">Posted Oct. 1</a> by senior editor Graham Wood</em></p> <p><a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/2014/10/01/beverly-carter-she-was-an-angel-on-earth/comment-page-1/#comment-896769" target="_blank">Marilyn responds</a>: I will no longer worry about insulting a client. My going home every night is more important. Show me your ID, and let me copy it. If you will not come to my office, then find another agent.</p> <p><em>Join this discussion at <a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/" target="_blank">speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org</a>.</em></p> <h4> About That FHA Prepayment Penalty...</h4> <p>The FHA&rsquo;s move to eliminate a prepayment penalty starting next year will relieve borrowers of a financial hit that&rsquo;s entirely out of their control. &mdash;<em><a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/2014/09/11/about-that-fha-prepayment-penalty/">Posted Sept. 11</a> by Robert Freedman, director of multimedia communications</em></p> <p><a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/2014/09/11/about-that-fha-prepayment-penalty/comment-page-1/#comment-876315" target="_blank">David Schenk responds</a>: What about mortgage insurance? On a $200,000 loan, a borrower will pay nearly $90,000 for mortgage insurance over the 30-year loan. Does that sound like it helps Americans to afford a home?</p> <p><em>Join this discussion at <a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/" target="_blank">speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org</a>.</em></p> <hr /> <h4> We want your feedback&nbsp;</h4> <p><em>Send letters to <a href="mailto:narpubs@REALTORS.org">narpubs@REALTORS.org</a> or join a conversation at one of our blogs:&nbsp; <a href="http://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org">Speaking of Real Estate</a>; <a href="http://styledstagedsold.blogs.realtor.org">Styled, Staged &amp; Sold</a>; <a href="http://theweeklybookscan.blogs.realtor.org.">Weekly Book Scan</a>; and <a href="http://ypnlounge.blogs.realtor.org">YPN Lounge</a>.</em></p> <p><em><strong>Note</strong>: Letters and blog posts are edited for space and clarity. Publication of a letter doesn&rsquo;t constitute an endorsement of the writer&rsquo;s views by the National Association of REALTORS&reg; or REALTOR&reg; Magazine. Submission of a letter constitutes permission to publish it in any form or medium.</em></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Readers write in about data responsibilities, safety concerns, and more.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_letters.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=51734">oct14_NC_letters.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_letters_0.jpg?1414164418" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_NC_letters.jpg?1414164441" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Letters Thu, 23 Oct 2014 18:55:25 +0000 Lily Oberman 17531 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Seller Calls the Shots on Multiple Offers http://realtormag.realtor.org/law-and-ethics/ethics/article/2014/11/seller-calls-shots-multiple-offers <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Listing agents should advise clients to treat all parties fairly, but decisions about disclosing terms belong to the seller. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/bruce-aydt">Bruce Aydt</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p><strong>Q. </strong>If a seller is presented with multiple offers from the listing agent, all at list price, is it the obligation of the listing agent to disclose terms of the other offers to the buyer&rsquo;s agents so the buyers are aware not only that there are multiple offers but also that the buyers might want to enhance their offers?</p> <p><strong>A. </strong>In any multiple-offer situation, it&rsquo;s the seller, not the listing agent, who calls the shots. The listing agent&rsquo;s duty under Article 1 of the Code is to &ldquo;protect and promote the interests of their client&rdquo; and to &ldquo;treat all parties honestly.&rdquo;</p> <p>The listing agent should give their seller client information and advice about negotiating multiple offers. Standard of Practice 1-15 provides &ldquo;REALTORS&reg;, in response to inquiries from buyers or cooperating brokers shall, with the sellers&rsquo; approval, disclose the existence of offers on the property.&rdquo;</p> <p>Talk with the seller about whether he or she wants the existence of multiple offers disclosed. If the seller approves such disclosure and a buyer or cooperating broker asks if there are multiple offers, then the listing agent is required to disclose that.</p> <p>Standard of Practice 1-13 gives guidance for both buyer&rsquo;s agents and listing agents about disclosure of the terms of the multiple offers. &ldquo;When entering into buyer/tenant agreements, REALTORS&reg; must advise potential clients of . . . the possibility that sellers or sellers&rsquo; representatives may not treat the existence, terms, or conditions of offers as confidential unless confidentiality is required by law, regulation, or by any confidentiality agreement between the parties.&rdquo;</p> <p>Buyer&rsquo;s agents should discuss how multiple offers may be handled, including the fact that once an offer leaves the buyer and buyer&rsquo;s agent&rsquo;s hands, there is no duty of confidentiality that the seller or listing agent has to the buyer to keep the terms of the offer confidential unless state law prohibits a listing agent or seller from disclosure of terms or there is a preexisting confidentiality agreement with the parties. Listing agents should always look first to their seller client for direction in negotiating multiple offers.</p> <p>Learn more about handling this issue at <a href="http://www.realtor.org/code-of-ethics-and-arbitration-manual/ethics/part-4-appendix-ix-presenting-and-negotiating-multiple-offers" target="_blank">realtorm.ag/multipleoffers</a>.</p> <hr /> <p><em>Have a dilemma? Send your ethics questions to ethics@realtors.org.</em></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Listing agents should advise clients to treat all parties fairly, but decisions about disclosing terms belong to the seller.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LE_ethics.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=18951">oct14_LE_ethics.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LE_ethics_0.jpg?1414163877" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_LE_ethics.jpg?1414163897" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/feature/article/2005/03/10-facts-about-nar-code-ethics">10 Facts About the NAR Code of Ethics</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/ethics/article/2014/07/ethics-violators-in-spotlight">Ethics Violators in the Spotlight</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Ethics Thu, 23 Oct 2014 17:42:34 +0000 Lily Oberman 17526 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Tax Time Is Now http://realtormag.realtor.org/law-and-ethics/feature/article/2014/11/tax-time-now <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> As the end of the year approaches, take control of finances to avoid unpleasant IRS surprises. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Sunday, November 2, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/sam-silverstein">Sam Silverstein</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>REALTORS&reg; enjoy a broad range of deductions and other advantages under the federal tax code because the government enables brokers to treat agents as independent contractors, not employees. But you need to take a strategic, organized approach to your financial situation to make sure you don&rsquo;t leave money on the table or get socked with a big bill at tax time.</p> <p>These tips from tax professionals can help you plan wisely during the remainder of 2014:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Gather your records</strong>. As an independent contractor, you&rsquo;re running your own small business. The IRS expects you to keep accurate records of business expenses and log your activities. &ldquo;The IRS will be very generous to agents if they have receipts,&rdquo; and accountants also appreciate clients who are well prepared when they come in for advice, says Don Williamson, professor of taxation at American University in Washington, D.C., and an accountant with Lamonaca &amp; Williamson in Falls Church, Va. &ldquo;The key is to account for each expense so I can go through the checkbook or the credit card statement and identify those things.&rdquo; There&rsquo;s another reason to keep good records: Your accountant may be able to find ways you might have missed to cut your tax bill. For example, although the IRS allows you to use a simplified method to claim a home office deduction instead of detailing those expenses on your tax return, taking the simpler approach could result in a smaller deduction, says certified public accountant Peter G. Baker, owner of Business Planning Group in Washington, D.C.</li> </ul> <ul> <li> <strong>Meet with a tax expert</strong>. You may see an accountant every spring to help you file your taxes, but what about the rest of the year? Your tax situation is evolving every day, so it&rsquo;s smart to have an ongoing relationship with a financial adviser who can help you plan ahead, says Jennifer K. Greco, a CPA with Cooper Williams LLC in Salt Lake City. &ldquo;The best thing is to go in to see your tax professional, bring your financial statements, and say, &lsquo;This is where I am right now. How much am I looking at taxwise, and what can I do to minimize that tax?&rsquo;&thinsp;&rdquo; Greco says.</li> </ul> <ul> <li> <strong>Take stock of your earnings</strong>. As the year winds down, analyze your commissions and other taxable income since January and project what you expect to earn through Dec. 31. &ldquo;Once we know how successful you&rsquo;re going to be, we can manage your tax bill&rdquo; by coming up with a strategy to minimize your taxable income, says Baker.Also, be sure to consider the tax implications of significant transactions before you move ahead with them. For example, you can avoid capital gains taxes when selling real estate by investing the money in another piece of property instead of taking it in cash&mdash;but you need to make the proper arrangements in advance, says Greco.</li> </ul> <ul> <li> &nbsp;<strong>Invest in your business</strong>. As an independent contractor, you are able to deduct&mdash;subject to limits&mdash;the cost of computers, mobile phones, office furniture, and other equipment you acquire for the day-to-day operation of your business in the year you acquire the items. So buying a new laptop or smartphone, or even a vehicle, could be an easy way to lower your tax bill. Ask yourself, however, whether you really need the items, advises Greco. &ldquo;People will say, &lsquo;I&rsquo;m going to buy a new computer because I need the write-off.&rsquo; But if you don&rsquo;t need a new computer, don&rsquo;t spend the money.&rdquo; Besides big-ticket purchases, remember that even small everyday expenses add up&mdash;and can translate into deductions. &ldquo;Good real estate agents realize that almost everything they&rsquo;re doing has some potential business purpose to it,&rdquo; Baker says. He recommends paying electronically for everything you buy&mdash;even small items like coffee&mdash;as an easy way to ensure that bona fide expenses don&rsquo;t slip through the cracks.</li> </ul> <ul> <li> &nbsp;<strong>Expect uncertainty</strong>. Some elements of your return may remain unsettled as the end of the year draws near&mdash;and even beyond Jan. 1&mdash;because tax laws are constantly in flux. For example, the cost of mortgage insurance premiums is traditionally a deductible expense, but it won&rsquo;t be for 2014 unless Congress approves the necessary legislation. The limit on deductible equipment purchases is also up in the air.</li> </ul> <p>Lawmakers know taxpayers expect them to act, says Evan Liddiard, senior policy representative&ndash;federal taxation for the National Association of REALTORS&reg;. &ldquo;Congress is very aware of the need to pass certain expired tax provisions that will apply to 2014, and will likely do so late this year or early next year,&rdquo; he says.</p> <p>Still, the best course of action is to plan for the worst and be sure you&rsquo;ve put aside enough money to cover your tax bill in the event expected deductions aren&rsquo;t available, Baker says. Ideally, you should have been taking this into account&nbsp; when sending quarterly estimated tax payments to the IRS. But if not, you&rsquo;ll remember why you saved for a rainy day.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>As the end of the year approaches, take control of finances to avoid unpleasant IRS surprises.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_tax.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=66662">oct14_NC_tax.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_NC_tax_0.jpg?1414164039" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_NC_tax.jpg?1414164060" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/02/11/avoid-these-irs-red-flags-tax-time">Avoid These IRS Red Flags at Tax Time</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/08/01/irs-cracking-down-independent-contractor-label">IRS Cracking Down on &#039;Independent Contractor&#039; Label</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/07/25/irs-simplifies-home-office-deduction">IRS Simplifies Home Office Deduction </a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/law/article/2008/09/safe-tax-tactics-avoid-irs-audit">Safe Tax Tactics: Avoid an IRS Audit</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/feature/article/2011/04/prove-payment-tax-time">Prove Payment at Tax Time</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Feature Thu, 23 Oct 2014 17:55:58 +0000 Lily Oberman 17528 at http://realtormag.realtor.org The Ultimate iPhone Listing Video http://realtormag.realtor.org/product-guide/cameras-and-video/article/2014/10/ultimate-iphone-listing-video <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sam DeBord explains how he shot a mobile-friendly, professional-looking video of one of his listings in less than an hour. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Tuesday, October 21, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/sam-debord">Sam DeBord</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>You can always hire professionals to do video for high-end homes, but the new iPhone makes it financially feasible to shoot a great video for any listing. Let me show you how.</p> <p>I recently wrote an <a href="http://www.warealtor.org/news-media/REmagazine/blog_post/remagazine-online/2014/10/17/3-steps-to-professional-quality-listing-videos-from-your-smartphone#.VEKeYWpZ3tA" target="_blank">article for WA REALTOR&reg; Magazine</a> that laid out the steps to create a high-quality real estate video on an iPhone. Now that I have even more experience with the technology, I thought it was time to break down the steps with an example of a video I actually created, with a few more details on how to do it effectively and make the video look professionally shot.</p> <p><object align="right"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="225" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/eGMdYfqqbYI?rel=0" width="400"></iframe></object></p> <p>The video embedded here took about 10 minutes to shoot and about 20 minutes to edit and stitch together on my new iPhone 6. These are all one-take video clips, using Instagram&rsquo;s Hyperlapse app for the video capture and the Videolicious app for the editing. It was a vacant home (which has since sold), so I need to create a video that focused on the overall property a bit more than the interior.</p> <p>I&rsquo;ve shot a few videos on older models of iPhones and Androids, but the iPhone 6 Plus really stands out because of its optical stabilization. This is critical for making the video look like professional marketing. Add the Hyperlapse app&rsquo;s digital stabilization features, and many of these shots look like high-end equipment rolling along a stable rail or dolly.</p> <p>Here are some additional tips for how to shoot, edit, and distribute the perfect listing video with your iPhone 6:</p> <p><strong>Highlight all three dimensions.</strong> When you&rsquo;re planning out horizontal panning shots, find spaces where there are objects in the near and distant fields of vision. You&rsquo;ll note that they seem to visually move in different planes. This really maximizes the benefits of video, and produces an effect that you can&rsquo;t get with still photography.</p> <p><strong>Mix up your clips.</strong> Pan up and down. Tour the home and travel through the neighborhood in order to keep the viewer&rsquo;s interest up. Intermix video clips that are short enough to catch the viewer&rsquo;s interest and move on to the next scene quickly.</p> <p><strong>Keep it digestible.</strong> It&rsquo;s an awesome tool, but using the time-lapse function too much can be overwhelming for the viewer. Watching a home tour at warp speed just isn&rsquo;t comfortable. Try time lapse out at 1x or 2x speed first. Also, it may be tempting to walk through the entire home, but it can become disorienting. The camera doesn&rsquo;t react well to light changes in different locations. You can always shoot the whole listing, breaking up your clips and picking the best ones later. But unless the listing is tiny, you just don&rsquo;t need to show every room. You should be able to tell the story in less than two minutes.</p> <p><strong>Think small.</strong> I specifically intended for viewers to watch this video on a small-size screen, so watching it on your phone is the best reference point. More and more users are going mobile, and streaming high-quality video is much easier with a smaller frame size.</p> <p>Your ultimate goal is to create a video that is short on facts and long on visual beauty. I didn&rsquo;t list an address in this video or voice it over since it was already sold, but you could add both. The intent of the video, though, is not to tell the viewer everything about the home. It&rsquo;s to quickly entice them to have an emotional reaction and contact you for more information.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Sam DeBord explains how he shot a mobile-friendly, professional-looking video of one of his listings in less than an hour.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_video.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=22361">oct14_PG_video.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_video_0.jpg?1413925484" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_PG_video.jpg?1413925499" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/product-guide/tablets-and-phones/article/2014/09/so-you-want-iphone-6">So You Want the iPhone 6…</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/06/13/shoot-better-video-your-smartphone">Shoot Better Video on Your Smartphone</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/product-guide/cameras-and-video/article/2014/07/2014-camera-guide-do-it-yourself-or-hire-photographe">2014 Camera Guide: Do It Yourself or Hire a Photographer?</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Cameras and Video Tue, 21 Oct 2014 19:52:38 +0000 mwhite 17511 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 2014 Computers: Brokers, Save on the Office http://realtormag.realtor.org/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-brokers-save-office <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> If you’re buying in bulk to equip a real estate team or brokerage, there are some massive deals to be had. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Monday, October 27, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/michael-antoniak">Michael Antoniak</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Like any other product, you can save a significant amount of money by purchasing computers in bulk. You just need to know where to look.</p> <p>When outfitting a real estate team or brokerage with new systems, it&rsquo;s not just the upfront price that determines the best deal. An office system must be designed to grow with the business, and that typically involves more than just desktop PCs.</p> <p>&ldquo;Ninety-nine percent of brokers don&rsquo;t have an IT person who can make those recommendations,&rdquo; notes Tommie McFerren, general manager of direct sales to consumers and small business at <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program/electronics-mobile-technology/dell" target="_blank">Dell</a>, a <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program/" target="_blank">REALTOR Benefits&reg;</a> partner. &ldquo;They may need several computers, printers, and a server. If they give us an overview of their business and what kind of growth they anticipate, we can help them put it all together.&rdquo;</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>In This Guide: </strong></p> <ul> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17501">The Desktop Isn&#39;t Dead</a><br /> Even as smartphones and tablets become standard devices, many practitioners see the value in a good ol&rsquo; PC.</li> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17502">Desktops vs. Laptops</a><br /> Whether you want a stationary computer or a portable one, each has a myriad of options to choose from.</li> <li> <a href="/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-faqs-for-real-estate">FAQs for Real Estate</a><br /> Have questions about what type of computer to get? We can probably answer a few.</li> <li> <a href="/product-guide/slideshow/2014/10/2014-computers-best-options">Best Options on the Market</a><br /> Start your online shopping with our list of the latest desktops and laptops.</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>Savings on the total package can be significant. &ldquo;Discounts can range from 20 percent to 30 percent,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;There&rsquo;s no threshold, even if they are purchasing just two PCs for their office.&rdquo;</p> <p>Comparable savings are also available through REALTOR Benefits&reg; partner <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program/electronics-mobile-technology/hp" target="_blank">Hewlett Packard</a>. &ldquo;HP negotiates pricing for recommended products for NAR&rsquo;s members,&rdquo; says Mary Larrinaga, manager of Hewlett Packard&rsquo;s Small and Medium Business Purchase Program. &ldquo;The handful of products recommended will run anywhere from 20 percent to 40 percent off list price.&rdquo;</p> <p>More modest savings may be available from any computer maker who sells directly to businesses through its website. Obviously, the more equipment you buy, the more negotiating leverage you may have. Some manufacturers also have their own lease-purchase plans to make the cost of the system a more manageable business expense.</p> <p>For the most savings, it helps to know exactly what you want in your next system and then shop aggressively online. Most manufacturers run occasional specials or deep discounts on specific system configurations through their online stores. Several sites also offer or track deals on a daily basis. <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Deals-Computers/b?ie=UTF8&amp;node=759498" target="_blank">Amazon</a>, <a href="http://www.pcmag.com/best-deals-today" target="_blank">PC Magazine</a>, and <a href="http://dealnews.com/c39/Computers/" target="_blank">Computer Deals</a> are just a few.</p> <p>Another option is to purchase a refurbished system. Many manufacturers offer occasional deals on returned desktops and laptops that have been rebuilt, tested, and discounted, including:</p> <ul> <li> <a href="http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/specialdeals/mac/imac" target="_blank">Apple</a></li> <li> <a href="http://www.toshiba.com/us/OutletCenter" target="_blank">Toshiba</a></li> <li> <a href="http://www.shopfujitsu.com/store/outletstore.do" target="_blank">Fujitsu</a></li> <li> <a href="http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msusa/en_US/pdp/productID.275706600?tid=sJfm1r48S_dc&amp;cid=5250&amp;pcrid=37063488413&amp;pkw=refurbished%20microsoft%20surface&amp;pmt=e&amp;WT.srch=1&amp;WT.mc_id=pointitsem_Microsoft+US_google_5+-+Surface&amp;WT.term=refurbished%20microsoft%20surface&amp;WT.campaign=5+-+Surface&amp;WT.content=Jfm1r48S&amp;WT.source=google&amp;WT.medium=cpc" target="_blank">Microsoft</a></li> </ul> <p>Tech retailers like <a href="http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/category/category_tlc.asp?CatId=2628" target="_blank">Tiger Direct</a>, <a href="http://www.newegg.com/Outlet/PromotionStore/ID-80" target="_blank">NewEgg</a>, and <a href="http://www.bestbuy.com/site/desktop-computers/refurbished-desktop-computers/pcmcat212600050009.c?id=pcmcat212600050009" target="_blank">Best Buy</a> also devote pages on their sites to sales of revamped systems. All of these deals are short-lived, with limited supplies and varying warranties, so check regularly and read the fine print.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>If you&rsquo;re buying in bulk to equip a real estate team or brokerage, there are some massive deals to be had.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_0.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=26677">oct14_PG_computers.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_1.jpg?1414428803" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_PG_computers.jpg?1414428805" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/10/24/new-computer-virus-could-wipe-out-your-files">New Computer Virus Could Wipe Out Your Files</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2012/09/05/survey-shows-my-computer-stresses-me-out">Survey Shows: &#039;My Computer Stresses Me Out!&#039;</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/law/article/2010/04/5-ways-keep-your-client-data-secure">5 Ways to Keep Your Client Data Secure</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Computers and Printers Mon, 20 Oct 2014 21:07:19 +0000 gwood 17504 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 2014 Computers: Desktops vs. Laptops http://realtormag.realtor.org/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-desktops-vs-laptops <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Whether you want a stationary computer or a portable one, each has a myriad of options to choose from. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Monday, October 27, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/michael-antoniak">Michael Antoniak</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>If you&rsquo;re considering a new system this year, the first decision is whether you want a desktop or a laptop. In both categories, there&rsquo;s a range of formats, including new approaches to the PC. For basic productivity, you should be able to find a serviceable solution for under $1,000.</p> <p>Set a budget, and let it be your guide. Most manufacturers offer a full line of systems, so explore all options on their websites. Whichever you choose, make sure to purchase the best computer &mdash; the one with the fastest processor, best graphics, most RAM, and largest hard drive &mdash; you can afford, and you will maximize its service life.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>In This Guide: </strong></p> <ul> <li> <a href="/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-desktop-isn-t-dead">The Desktop Isn&#39;t Dead</a><br /> Even as smartphones and tablets become standard devices, many practitioners see the value in a good ol&rsquo; PC.</li> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17503">FAQs for Real Estate</a><br /> Have questions about what type of computer to get? We can probably answer a few.</li> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17504">Brokers, Save on the Office</a><br /> If you&rsquo;re buying in bulk to equip a real estate team or brokerage, there are some massive deals to be had.</li> <li> <a href="/product-guide/slideshow/2014/10/2014-computers-best-options">Best Options on the Market</a><br /> Start your online shopping with our list of the latest desktops and laptops.</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>For desktops, the emphasis is on design efficiency to give users more work area. Traditional towers with monitors are still available, but all-in-one (AIO) systems are increasingly popular. These conveniently pack all components in the same chassis as the monitor for a neat, well-organized appearance. At the other extreme are mini or micro towers. Often no larger than a desktop speaker, some can be mounted directly to the back of an LCD monitor.</p> <p>If you want a portable computer, consider competing categories of laptops and notebooks. Price reflects the mix of features, intent, and design, and there&rsquo;s a direct correlation between screen size and weight. You&rsquo;ll pay more for the latest specs or the lightest, most compact package.</p> <h4> Which Is The Right System?</h4> <p>That depends on how you prefer to work.</p> <p>The Chromebook &mdash; starting in the $300 range &mdash; and Apple&rsquo;s MacBook Air are only for those who have completely made the shift to cloud services. If your choice is driven by budget, you&rsquo;ll find basic Windows laptops starting under $500. Big-screen desktop replacement systems are also the heaviest. Ultrabooks are lighter without sacrificing performance, and they are priced accordingly. For the most versatility, consider a hybrid tablet/notebook. These allow you the option of working in touchscreen or keyboard mode. On some, the screen is completely detachable for use as a big-screen tablet.</p> <p>With so many options, some people now rely on a mix of systems to maximize their productivity. Michael Seward, CRS, GREEN, associate broker at Sawicki Real Estate in Amherst, Mass., exercises all options. He&rsquo;s got an iPhone, iPad, Toshiba Windows laptop, and an iMac desktop system at home.</p> <p>&ldquo;I bring the laptop with me to the office and can use it wherever, whenever I want to work,&rdquo; he says. Throughout the day, he&rsquo;ll check listings, upload photos to the MLS, or update his online marketing. &ldquo;I do a lot of blogging and really like having a full-sized keyboard as a typewriter,&rdquo; Seward says. &ldquo;It just makes it easier to do some things than on my tablet.&rdquo;</p> <p>Seward purchased the iMac desktop system, with its 21-inch screen, specifically for editing home tours. &ldquo;You&rsquo;ve got to have the power of a PC for video,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;Having a full view is absolutely essential for putting together a good tour. The bigger screen just makes it much easier to do.&rdquo;</p> <p>Ultimately, it&rsquo;s the size of the screen and keyboard that secures the primacy of a desktop or laptop in real estate for the foreseeable future. It may not convey the same style or cachet as a smartphone or tablet, but for many, it&rsquo;s most practical.</p> <p>&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t need to worry about hip and fun anymore; I just need it to work,&rdquo; jokes Kerry Redding, sales associate at RE/MAX 1 in Austin, Texas. For her and others like her, a computer remains the most practical solution.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Whether you want a stationary computer or a portable one, each has a myriad of options to choose from.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_4.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=26677">oct14_PG_computers.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_5.jpg?1414428914" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_PG_computers_1.jpg?1414428916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/10/24/new-computer-virus-could-wipe-out-your-files">New Computer Virus Could Wipe Out Your Files</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2012/09/05/survey-shows-my-computer-stresses-me-out">Survey Shows: &#039;My Computer Stresses Me Out!&#039;</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/law/article/2010/04/5-ways-keep-your-client-data-secure">5 Ways to Keep Your Client Data Secure</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Computers and Printers Mon, 20 Oct 2014 20:51:01 +0000 gwood 17502 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 2014 Computers: FAQs for Real Estate http://realtormag.realtor.org/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-faqs-for-real-estate <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Have questions about what type of computer to get? We can probably answer a few. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Monday, October 27, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/michael-antoniak">Michael Antoniak</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>A computer upgrade is likely the single biggest investment in technology you&rsquo;ll make, a necessary expense that should serve you well for years. But because of the costs involved, confusing terminology, and sometimes dizzying specs, it&rsquo;s often overwhelming.</p> <p>Through its <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program">REALTOR Benefits&reg; Program</a>, the National Association of REALTORS&reg; works with <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program/electronics-mobile-technology/dell">Dell</a>, <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program/electronics-mobile-technology/hp">Hewlett Packard</a>, and <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/realtor-benefits-program/electronics-mobile-technology/lenovo">Lenovo</a> assist you with their equipment purchases &mdash; and at significant discounts. Support specialists at each company are skilled at qualifying buyers so the specialists can match a computer system to your career goals. They ask a lot of questions &mdash; and field many more &mdash; on a daily basis.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>In This Guide: </strong></p> <ul> <li> <a href="/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-desktop-isn-t-dead">The Desktop Isn&#39;t Dead</a><br /> Even as smartphones and tablets become standard devices, many practitioners see the value in a good ol&rsquo; PC.</li> <li> <a href="/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-desktops-vs-laptops">Desktops vs. Laptops</a><br /> Whether you want a stationary computer or a portable one, each has a myriad of options to choose from.</li> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17504">Brokers, Save on the Office</a><br /> If you&rsquo;re buying in bulk to equip a real estate team or brokerage, there are some massive deals to be had.</li> <li> <a href="/product-guide/slideshow/2014/10/2014-computers-best-options">Best Options on the Market</a><br /> Start your online shopping with our list of the latest desktops and laptops.</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>Here&rsquo;s some of practitioners&rsquo; most frequently asked about computers, along with the answers.</p> <h4> What&rsquo;s it going to cost?</h4> <p>Price may not be the key to the best computer, but it&rsquo;s usually the point where most people start their shopping. Real estate professionals worry &ldquo;not only about the up-front cost, but the cost of ownership,&rdquo; says Mary Larrinaga, manager of Hewlett Packard&rsquo;s Small and Medium Business Purchase Program. Callers also want to know &ldquo;how the solution will pay for itself.&rdquo;</p> <p>Tommie McFerren, general manager of direct sales to consumers and small business at Dell, agrees. &ldquo;The conversation usually starts with budget and cost. Real estate pros want a functional device that&rsquo;s going to be cost-effective and present a professional image.&rdquo; Once a price range is established, &ldquo;we can start to get into the nuts and bolts of the right system.&rdquo;</p> <p>The budget really sets the parameters of the system. With both desktops and laptops starting at less than $500, expect to pay at least that much. But pay more, and you&rsquo;ll get better specs, a larger screen, or, in the case of a mobile system, a lighter, more versatile product or hybrid notebook/tablet.</p> <p>Simply put, get the best system you can afford. As McFerren suggests, first determine what&rsquo;s affordable to you, then let the support specialists help configure the most productive solution for your money.</p> <h4> What kind of computer do I need?</h4> <p>That depends on how you work and where you are in your career. Larrinaga says those who spend significant time away from their desk want mobility, &ldquo;something that will be there when they need it as a tool, but something they can work in their daily life as well.&rdquo; For them, a laptop, tablet, or hybrid is recommended.</p> <p>&ldquo;More mature professionals are often interested in adding desktop functionality&rdquo; for outfitting a multimember team or office, McFerren adds.</p> <p>Whatever your preference is, it should address your present and anticipated workload, he says. &ldquo;You need to focus on what you need today, but also look at it as a three- or four-year investment.&rdquo;</p> <h4> What about the operating system?</h4> <p>With competing versions of Windows available &mdash; not to mention the classic debate between that and Macs &mdash; it&rsquo;s really a question about hardware and software. Talk to publishers of the real estate software you rely on, inquire about compatibility with the respective platforms, and ask if a cloud version is available.</p> <p>&ldquo;We get a lot of questions about Windows,&rdquo; says McFerren. &ldquo;A lot of customers still default to Windows 7, but a lot of practitioners are also open to Windows 8&rdquo; for running laptops and tablets.</p> <p>For most, Larrinaga recommends the latest version of the operating system. &ldquo;Windows 8 is faster, easier to migrate into work environments, and, despite what you may have heard, also faster and more efficient at running older applications,&rdquo; she says.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s one exception: &ldquo;For those who have really old equipment and software which only ran on XP, you can still get Windows 7 Pro on select machines,&rdquo; she advises. &ldquo;Windows 7 Pro has an XP mode that lets you use really old software and hardware.&rdquo;</p> <h4> What are the right specs?</h4> <p>That depends on how much you can spend. &ldquo;If your budget is constrained, we can make recommendations,&rdquo; says McFerren. &ldquo;But what we typically advise is that you focus on functionality and how you want to use your system now and in the future.&rdquo;</p> <p>He says a combination of factors determine the best system for a real estate professional: processor speed, screen size, RAM, available memory, weight, and the style and layout of the keyboard. &ldquo;You need to think about what your requirements are and how you want to use it day-to-day.&rdquo;</p> <p>Buy the best system you can afford now, advises Larrinaga. &ldquo;The faster the processor, the longer you will own your computer,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;Memory and the hard disk drive can all be upgraded later. When buying a PC you know you want to have for a long time, focus your money on the processor and graphics.&rdquo;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Have questions about what type of computer to get? We can probably answer a few.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_6.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=26677">oct14_PG_computers.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_7.jpg?1414428956" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_PG_computers_2.jpg?1414428957" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/10/24/new-computer-virus-could-wipe-out-your-files">New Computer Virus Could Wipe Out Your Files</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2012/09/05/survey-shows-my-computer-stresses-me-out">Survey Shows: &#039;My Computer Stresses Me Out!&#039;</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/law/article/2010/04/5-ways-keep-your-client-data-secure">5 Ways to Keep Your Client Data Secure</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Computers and Printers Mon, 20 Oct 2014 20:55:47 +0000 gwood 17503 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 2014 Computers: The Desktop Isn’t Dead http://realtormag.realtor.org/product-guide/computers-and-printers/article/2014/10/2014-computers-desktop-isn-t-dead <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Even as smartphones and tablets become standard devices, many practitioners see the value in a good ol’ PC. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Monday, October 27, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/michael-antoniak">Michael Antoniak</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Despite this technological age in which some real estate professionals advocate for <a href="/technology/feature/article/2014/08/all-or-nothing-why-you-should-go-100-mobile">going 100 percent mobile</a>, you might find that it&rsquo;s much easier said than done. Most practitioners still want &mdash; or <em>need</em> &mdash; a &ldquo;real&rdquo; computer on their desk. Whether working at an office, home office, or somewhere between the two, some tasks require the bigger screen, full-sized keyboard, and processing power of a desktop or laptop system.</p> <p>&ldquo;When I&rsquo;m out and about, my smartphone is fine,&rdquo; says Kerry Redding, a sales associate with RE/MAX 1 in Austin, Texas. &ldquo;But I don&rsquo;t see how you can function on just a smartphone. You can&rsquo;t organize the screen the same way or open multiple windows at once.&rdquo;</p> <p>She&rsquo;s still fully mobile with her Dell laptop as her primary computer, which she carries with her as needed. Even as she debates purchasing a tablet, Redding says she doesn&rsquo;t yet foresee a day when she&rsquo;ll pack her computer system away.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>In This Guide: </strong></p> <ul> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17502">Desktops vs. Laptops</a><br /> Whether you want a stationary computer or a portable one, each has a myriad of options to choose from.</li> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17503">FAQs for Real Estate</a><br /> Have questions about what type of computer to get? We can probably answer a few.</li> <li> <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/17504">Brokers, Save on the Office</a><br /> If you&rsquo;re buying in bulk to equip a real estate team or brokerage, there are some massive deals to be had.</li> <li> <a href="/product-guide/slideshow/2014/10/2014-computers-best-options">Best Options on the Market</a><br /> Start your online shopping with our list of the latest desktops and laptops.</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>&ldquo;The laptop is a little cumbersome, but I like the larger screen and the layout of a full-sized keyboard,&rdquo; she explains. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s just easier and more comfortable for me to work on.&rdquo;</p> <p>Her endorsement is typical &mdash; at least among practitioners who started in the real estate field before the smartphone era. Younger eyes may see all they need in the small screen of a smartphone, but those with years of experience in real estate maintain there are some tasks that are best &mdash; and more conveniently &mdash; accomplished on a full-sized PC. And as people age, or their eyes grow weaker, the larger screen becomes more of a necessity than an option.</p> <p>Maria and Gary Wallace of Team Wallace at Coldwell Banker Residential in Orlando, Fla., remain loyal computer users, though their allegiances differ. He carries a Windows laptop; she has a MacBook to go with her iPhone and iPad.</p> <p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m doing more and more on my iPad when I&rsquo;m away from my office,&rdquo; says Maria Wallace, ABR, GRI. &ldquo;But my MacBook is hard to let go of. It&rsquo;s still very important to how I work.&rdquo; At the office and at home, she keeps the MacBook within reach. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s just more comfortable for me to work on the laptop when I am researching the market, or doing my email. The bigger screen, the real keyboard are nice to have.&rdquo;</p> <p>A Mac user since the 1980s, Maria welcomes the increased support it now enjoys in real estate. She says her MLS is now fully compatible with the Mac, and the shift of software to cloud services makes the computer platform less of an issue than in years past. &ldquo;It used to be hard to do real estate with a Mac,&rdquo; she recalls.</p> <p>That may come as a surprise to some, but one of the most significant recent developments in real estate, as far as computer systems go, is the viability of the Mac. Real estate was and still is primarily a Windows PC world, but a small and growing share of professionals now turn to an Apple system. Since Macs can be equipped to run the Windows operating software, compatibility is no longer an issue.</p> <p>The other notable trend: the increased reliance on some form of laptop as the primary computer. For real estate professionals, it simply makes sense. Since most work between home and company offices, a portable PC ensures your system is with you wherever you go. The best laptops now rival desktop systems in terms of specs, so there are few tradeoffs between the two, other than a slightly smaller screen. Even for those who insist on a desktop system, it&rsquo;s usually a stationary base with a companion laptop system.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>Even as smartphones and tablets become standard devices, many practitioners see the value in a good ol&rsquo; PC.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_2.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=26677">oct14_PG_computers.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_PG_computers_3.jpg?1414428835" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_PG_computers_0.jpg?1414428837" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/10/24/new-computer-virus-could-wipe-out-your-files">New Computer Virus Could Wipe Out Your Files</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2012/09/05/survey-shows-my-computer-stresses-me-out">Survey Shows: &#039;My Computer Stresses Me Out!&#039;</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/law/article/2010/04/5-ways-keep-your-client-data-secure">5 Ways to Keep Your Client Data Secure</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Computers and Printers Mon, 20 Oct 2014 20:43:58 +0000 gwood 17501 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Wallpaper: Back in the Game http://realtormag.realtor.org/home-and-design/feature/article/2014/10/wallpaper-back-in-game <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It’s not your grandmother’s look any more. Find out why wallpaper has a growing appeal among trendsetters and younger buyers. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Tuesday, October 21, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/barbara-ballinger">Barbara Ballinger</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>In recent years, wallpaper played a minor role in home d&eacute;cor, relegated mostly to powder rooms and otherwise pushed aside by paint, which has been considered the cheaper, faster way to freshen a room.</p> <p>Wallpaper also didn&rsquo;t fit the more modern aesthetic that gained hold in the last dozen years or so, says Paula Berberian, creative <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/oct14_BrewsterHomeFashions.jpg" style="width: 250px; height: 250px; float: right; margin: 3px;" />director at <a href="http://www.brewsterwallcovering.com/" target="_blank">Brewster Home Fashions</a>, a fifth-generation family-owned wallpaper manufacturer in Randolph, Mass. And some buyers considered it far too personal a choice, as well as problematic to install and later remove.</p> <p>But tastes change. Many younger buyers don&rsquo;t remember their parents&rsquo; and grandparents&rsquo; homes covered in floral, striped, and velvet papers and are now gravitating to wallpaper as a chic update choice. &ldquo;They consider it quite cool, along the lines of Mid-Century modern,&rdquo; says Berberian.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s even catching on in parts of the country far from the trendsetting coasts.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/Oct14_OsborneLittle.jpg" style="width: 250px; height: 250px; float: right; margin: 3px;" /></strong>&ldquo;We just finished a Parade of Homes in Boise, Idaho, and Provo Utah, and most of the high-end houses incorporated some wallpaper&mdash;often big, bright, bold, large-scale geometrics,&rdquo; says Robyn Shea, a salesperson at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate in Boise who retails several wallpaper brands under her other business, <a href="http://www.designsource101.com/" target="_blank">Design Source 101</a>.</p> <p>There are other reasons for wallpaper&rsquo;s growing appeal:</p> <p><strong>Easier to hang and remove</strong>: Papers have been vastly improved, and are easier to hang and remove without damaging walls. Some are fabricated on a nonwoven substrate, so they make it easier to hide surface imperfections, too, says Berberian. Jackie Just&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.muralsyourway.com/" target="_blank">Murals Your Way</a>, based in Minneapolis, are made to peel and stick, making them easier to apply, remove, and reuse elsewhere.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/Oct14_MuralsYourWay.jpg" style="width: 250px; height: 250px; float: right; margin: 3px;" />More environmentally friendly: </strong>Many wallpapers today are made from eco-wise materials, such as water-based prints that breathe. Some with new vinyl coatings hold up better to bathroom steam and can be wiped free of dirt, grease, and fingerprints.</p> <p><strong>Patterns are hipper and fresher-looking</strong>: Buyers should focus on overscaled geometrics including kaleidoscopes, Asian-inspired themes, <em>trompe l&rsquo;oeil</em> photorealism shots of materials such as weathered wood and brick, horizontal and chevron patterns rather than traditional vertical stripes, and faux leathers, says Jon Sherman, owner of manufacturer <a href="http://www.flavorpaper.com/" target="_blank">Flavor Paper</a> in Brooklyn, N.Y.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/Oct14_FlavorPaper.jpg" style="width: 250px; height: 250px; float: right; margin: 3px;" />Colors are brighter: </strong>Think aquas, oranges, purples, greens, yellows, hot pinks, metallic silvers and golds, and contrasting white and black combos<strong>,</strong> says Jill Wagner at New York-based manufacturer <a href="http://www.osborneandlittle.com/" target="_blank">Osborne &amp; Little</a>. Midtone pastels have made inroads, and, of course, gray, the hot neutral, makes the cut.</p> <p><strong>Texture has become more pronounced: </strong>Metallics and crystals are being incorporated, as well as bits of suede, gels, beads, and cosmetic-style powders that change with light and as people move past them, says Sherman. Even &rsquo;50s grass cloth has returned, but with a contemporary edge and in more than earth tones.</p> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2014_oct/Oct14_DesignSource101.jpg" style="width: 250px; height: 250px; float: right; margin: 3px;" /><strong>More inventive installations:</strong> Wallpaper is going beyond just a room&rsquo;s four walls; nowadays, it&rsquo;s viewed as a possibility for one accent wall, the ceiling, or in between ceiling beams or coffers, says Berberian. And it can be used to expand space, make it more intimate, or camouflage a problem, says general contractor Beverley Kruskol of <a href="http://mypacificbuilding.com/" target="_blank">M.Y. Pacific Builders</a> in Los Angeles. Santa Monica, Calif.-based designer <a href="http://kimbahills.com/" target="_blank">Kimball Hills</a> of Rumba Style hadn&rsquo;t used wallpaper in years, but is doing so with white grass cloth to brighten a client&rsquo;s burled wood wall.</p> <p><strong>Price points vary: </strong>Some companies like Berberian&rsquo;s offer single rolls from $40 up, and Just provides a fully customized 8-by-0-foot feature wall mural for between $500 and $800.</p> <p>But since not all buyers yet are fans of wallpaper, professionals recommend that home owners weigh choices carefully unless they plan to stay for years. Here are more tips:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Dip a toe in slowly: </strong>If your clients are new to using wallpaper, they might want to start small, such as an accent wall in a bathroom, says Chicago designer <a href="http://www.lisawolfedesign.com/" target="_blank">Lisa Wolfe</a>, who is a huge wallpaper fan. She also recommends it to break up large areas, or in a bedroom, entry hall, cozy den, breakfast room. Using it in a kitchen requires restraint since many equate to the dated kitchen paper of the past. Today&rsquo;s buyers are still more inclined to tile backsplashes or paint. But if a home owners likes the idea, they should consider a perky, modern pattern.</li> <li> <strong>Wallpaper </strong><strong>borders are out</strong>, says Wagner of Osborne &amp; Little.</li> <li> <strong>A wallpaper whitewashing is a no-no: </strong>If an entire house is wallpapered, sellers might consider removing some before they list. And they should definitely clean or take down dirty, worn, or torn wallpaper, which is a huge turnoff.</li> </ul> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>It&rsquo;s not your grandmother&rsquo;s look any more. Find out why wallpaper has a growing appeal among trendsetters and younger buyers.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_HD_wallpaper.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=67494">oct14_HD_wallpaper.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_HD_wallpaper_0.jpg?1414437576" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_HD_wallpaper.jpg?1414437610" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/08/29/home-owners-have-big-interior-design-plans">Home Owners Have Big Interior Design Plans</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/home-and-design/feature/article/2014/01/regional-trends-what-buyers-want-most-and-get">Regional Trends: What Buyers Want Most—and Get</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/home-and-design/feature/article/2014/09/whats-lurking-behind-those-walls">What&#039;s Lurking Behind Those Walls?</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/home-and-design/slideshow/2014/09/ultimate-home-makeover">The Ultimate Home Makeover</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/home-and-design/architecture-coach/article/2013/11/historic-renovation-dos-and-don-ts">Historic Renovation Dos and Don’ts</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Feature Fri, 17 Oct 2014 19:02:52 +0000 echristoffer 17494 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 5 Ways to Improve Your Vocal Impact http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/relationship-management/article/2014/10/5-ways-improve-your-vocal-impact <div class="field field-type-text field-field-deck"> <div class="field-label">Deck:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> You use your voice every day in business to connect with clients and peers. But are you leveraging your greatest instrument to improve your professional image? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-archive-item"> <div class="field-label">Archive:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-features-checkbox"> <div class="field-label">Add to Features Package for the Month:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> off </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-mag-pub-date"><div class="field field-type-date field-field-pub-date"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <span class="date-display-single">Thursday, October 16, 2014</span> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-op-author"> <div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/author/melissa-dittmann-tracey">Melissa Dittmann Tracey</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>From just the sound of your voice, others are forming impressions about you. Your voice alone can make you seem more knowledgeable, credible, or even friendly. In fact, the sound of your voice matters twice as much as the words you say, according to a 2012 study by communications firm Quantified Impressions.</p> <p>The company asked more than 1,000 listeners and vocal experts to evaluate 120 executives&rsquo; voices to learn the extent a person&rsquo;s voice can influence perceptions. Voices that listeners rated as weak, strained, rough, or breathy tended to prompt negative labels of the speakers &mdash; viewing them as weak, passive, or tense. Another big vocal annoyance was &ldquo;uptalk,&rdquo; where a person pronounces a statement as if it were a question, allowing his or her voice to rise at the end of the sentence (such as &ldquo;It&rsquo;s nice to meet you today?&rdquo;). Another aggravation: &ldquo;vocal fry,&rdquo; in which speakers end their words in a raspy growl that can make them sound uncomfortable or in pain.</p> <p>On the other hand, if you&rsquo;re lucky enough to have a so-called &ldquo;normal&rdquo; voice, listeners rated you as more successful, sociable, smart, and even sexy, according to the study.</p> <p>Your voice matters because it&rsquo;s your signature &mdash; part of what identifies you. So how do you know whether it&rsquo;s helping your professional image or hurting it? No one likes the sound of their own voice, which makes it particularly difficult know how others may be hearing it and perceiving it. And what if you realize you have a breathy or strained voice: Can you <em>really</em> change it?</p> <p>Voice coaches say you certainly can &mdash; with practice. And as with all instruments, practice is what most people need to unlock their very best speaking voice. That is, one that can lift your entire professional image, your credibility, and likability and even make you a better influencer too.</p> <h4> Unlocking Your New and Improved Voice</h4> <p>Darlene Price, author of <em>Well Said!</em> (AMACOM, 2012) and president of <a href="http://www.wellsaid.com" target="_blank">Well Said Inc.</a>, a training company for presentations and effective communication, says there are six key factors to a quality speaking voice: tone, pitch, pace, volume, inflection, and articulation. Practically everyone could use a tune-up in these areas. Here, Price elaborates on some ways professionals can improve their vocal quality.</p> <p><strong>1. Watch your tone. </strong></p> <p>The tone of your voice conveys your attitude. Do you sound happy, sad, rushed, or distracted? &ldquo;You can use words to say one thing, but if the tone is something different, people will believe the tone in your message more than the words,&rdquo; Price says.</p> <p>In fact, nearly 40 percent of a person&rsquo;s first impression of you comes from the tone of your voice alone in face-to-face interactions, according to research conducted by UCLA professor Albert Mehrabian. On the phone, when you don&rsquo;t have the added support of facial expressions and eye contact, your tone of voice can be even more critical.</p> <p><strong>Try this:</strong> Make a point to speak with more energy and volume. Focus on conveying sincerity, cheerfulness, and confidence with your voice, Price says. That also means <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/relationship-management/article/2014/05/overconnectivity-when-too-much-tech-hurt" target="_blank">eliminating distractions</a> and staying completely focused on the person you&rsquo;re speaking to; even when on the phone, people can tell if you&rsquo;re distracted (say, when you&rsquo;re trying to sneak a check of your e-mail). When you&rsquo;re talking on the phone, here&rsquo;s a good way to project a better tone: Stand up. &ldquo;You have more energy when you&rsquo;re standing,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;Your diaphragm is more aligned with your voice.&rdquo;</p> <p>Price also suggests talking into a mirror when you&rsquo;re on the phone so you can see your facial expressions. &ldquo;The facial expressions come first and the voice often follows what the face does,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;So if you have a pensive scowl on your face, your voice will follow that with a tense sound. On the contrary, if you&rsquo;re smiling, you&rsquo;ll likely have a more positive tone.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>2. Throw a good pitch. </strong></p> <p>Pitch is how high or low your voice is. A lower-sounding voice is perceived to be stronger, confident, credible, and project the appearance of more control over a situation than a high-pitched voice, Price says. An overly high-pitched voice suggests junior or nonauthoritative status and even immaturity &mdash; not exactly the message you want to send when working with clients on what&rsquo;s likely the biggest purchase of their life. Women generally have higher voices than men do and may need to be particularly cognizant of the pitch they&rsquo;re projecting.</p> <p><strong>Try this: </strong>Learn the full range of your voice. In private, sing the word &ldquo;ah&rdquo; at various pitch levels, going down the scale, Price suggests. Then practice reciting the alphabet or reading a passage aloud from a book to get accustomed to using your lower range until it starts to feel natural. Don&rsquo;t overdo it; you needn&rsquo;t go Darth Vader low. Find a comfortable lower pitch. You may need to relax your throat so it doesn&rsquo;t tighten and sound irritated as you try to go lower. Some vocal experts suggest drinking warm water or warm tea to help relax the throat muscles (drinking cold water can have the opposite effect, tightening your throat muscles). In time, practice will make that perfect lower pitch.</p> <p><strong>3. Set a good pace. </strong></p> <p>How quickly or slowly do you speak? You don&rsquo;t want to become such a slow speaker that you risk boring others, but you also don&rsquo;t want to be so fast that the listener gets frustrated in trying to keep up. The average rate of speech for most presenters is 150 to 160 words per minute, Price says.</p> <p>&ldquo;Be mindful of your pace,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;When you slow down the pace, you will help someone understand more and they will absorb more information because you&rsquo;ll become more articulate.&rdquo; When you&rsquo;re giving fact-based material or instruction or stats, speak at a pace 20 to 30 percent slower than usual, Price suggests.</p> <p><strong>Try this: </strong>Test your pace. Read a document aloud, and time yourself for one minute. Use a document in a word processing program on your computer to make it easy to calculate the word count. Be conversational and natural as you read at your normal rate. How far did you get after 60 seconds? Figure the word count that you covered in that time span. Did you read fewer than 150 words or more (red flag: a possible speed talker?), or were you right on par? It can be a good gauge of how fast a talker you are, Price says.</p> <p>If you do discover you&rsquo;re a fast talker, vocal exercises can help to slow you down. Price suggests, for five minutes, clap your hands between each word as you read aloud a passage. Then, for 10 minutes, just clap at each punctuation mark. &ldquo;You&rsquo;re forcing yourself to slow down and training your brain to insert natural pauses,&rdquo; she says.</p> <p><strong>4. Elevate your voice with powerful language. </strong></p> <p>The words and phrases you say can unintentionally be sabotaging you. It&rsquo;s not just how you say it &mdash; it&rsquo;s also what you say. Only 7 percent of a person&rsquo;s first impression of you face-to-face comes from the actual words you speak, according to Mehrabian&rsquo;s research. But in real estate, you&rsquo;re working in a vital adviser role to clients and your words will have an impact, so make every percentage of that impression count.</p> <p>The language you choose can make you more influential and professional in the eyes of your customers.</p> <p><strong>Try this:</strong> Pay attention more closely to your word choices to make sure you&rsquo;re not falling for one of the common traps: discounting, validation questions (like tacking on &ldquo;OK?&rdquo; at the end of your sentences), using &ldquo;I&rdquo;-centered pronouns, or words that don&rsquo;t spur action. In her book, Price outlines several word and phrase tips to improve your language. Here are a few of her tips:</p> <p><strong>Lose nonconfident speech habits. </strong>Don&rsquo;t unintentionally negate what you&rsquo;re about to say. For example: &ldquo;I think that&rsquo;s acceptable, <em>don&rsquo;t you</em>?&rdquo; Instead, say: &ldquo;Yes, I believe that&rsquo;s acceptable. Tell me what you think.&rdquo; Also, other fillers that may show a lack of confidence includes adding &ldquo;I&rsquo;ll try&rdquo; into your speech. Example: &ldquo;I&rsquo;ll <em>try to</em> find more houses for you to look at in that neighborhood.&rdquo; Instead, speak with greater confidence and say: &ldquo;I will find you more houses to look at in that neighborhood.&rdquo; &ldquo;Try&rdquo; implies the possibility that you may not finish the task or you may fail at accomplishing it, Price says. Another example of nonconfident language: &ldquo;I was <em>just </em>calling to see if you wanted to view a home on Saturday.&rdquo; Instead, remove the &ldquo;just&rdquo; and say: &ldquo;Would you like to view houses on Saturday?&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>- Replace &ldquo;I&rdquo;-centered pronouns with &ldquo;you.&rdquo; </strong>Price says the three most compelling words in the language of persuasion are a person&rsquo;s name, &ldquo;you,&rdquo; and &ldquo;your.&rdquo; How often do you use first-person pronouns (like &ldquo;I,&rdquo; &ldquo;me,&rdquo; or &ldquo;we&rdquo;) when you speak? If it&rsquo;s quite a bit, make a point to replace them more with influential words like &ldquo;you,&rdquo; &ldquo;your,&rdquo; or the person&rsquo;s name, which will capture the person&rsquo;s attention, since you&rsquo;re talking directly to him or her. For example, instead of saying: &ldquo;Our company has top producers.&rdquo; Say: &ldquo;Our partnership can ensure <em>you</em> reach your goals in selling <em>your</em> home, <em>John</em>.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;The frequent use of the word &lsquo;you&rsquo; answers the audience&rsquo;s unspoken question &mdash; &lsquo;What&rsquo;s in it for me?&rsquo;&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;The point is, to optimize your influence, use pronouns that directly relate to and include the listener. Otherwise, you risk sounding self-centric versus customer-centric.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>- Amp up the action in your words. </strong>When you talk with action verbs, you connect listeners to an outcome and conjure up an image of what you want them to achieve. In real estate, &ldquo;you are leading a person through an important decision, and there is an action involved,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;When you start thinking in [action] verbs, it becomes another language that has more energy, life, movement, and connects the buyer and seller to the outcome you want them to achieve.&rdquo;</p> <p>For example, instead of saying: &ldquo;Let&rsquo;s just fix up three things in this house so it sells.&rdquo; Say: &ldquo;I want to <em>accelerate</em> the sale of this home by <em>boosting</em> the sales price by making three economic renovations. It will <em>drive </em>prospects to the door.&rdquo;</p> <p>Price outlines several action verbs and phrases to start using in your everyday speech. She keeps a list posted at her computer so she can consult it and weave the words into phone conversations and her e-mails. The words cover the gamut, such as &ldquo;accelerate,&rdquo; &ldquo;align,&rdquo; &ldquo;optimize,&rdquo; &ldquo;maximize,&rdquo; &ldquo;transform,&rdquo; &ldquo;boost,&rdquo; &ldquo;capture,&rdquo; and &ldquo;commit.&rdquo; She also includes a list of phrases that attempt to answer the &ldquo;so what&rdquo; or &ldquo;who cares?&rdquo; for your listener by incorporating more phrases like &ldquo;what this means for you &hellip;&rdquo;; &ldquo;the bottom line for you is &hellip;&rdquo;; or &ldquo;the benefits for you are &hellip;&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;When you speak with action verbs, you connect people to taking more action by creating momentum, energy, and drive,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;Anytime you&rsquo;re communicating results, next steps, or outcomes, you rely on verbs.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>5. Shhh!</strong></p> <p>One of the worst speech offenses: talking too much, Price says. Know when to turn off your voice.</p> <p>In real estate, a transaction can be filled with emotions. As such, &ldquo;feeling heard and understood is very important,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;Know when to talk, and know when to listen.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;Contrary to popular belief,&rdquo; Price adds, &ldquo;the person who has the most influence is usually the one asking the most questions,&rdquo; not the one doing all the talking.</p> <p><strong>Try this: </strong>Adopt the 80/20 ratio. This is where you ask thoughtful questions and actively listen 80 percent of the time, and talk 20 percent of the time, Price explains. &ldquo;It helps to avoid the habit of talking too much,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;You can become an expert in asking thought-provoking questions that get them talking more.&rdquo;</p> <p>Open-ended questions are those that cannot be answered with one-word responses, like &ldquo;yes&rdquo; or &ldquo;no,&rdquo; but force your customers to elaborate and help ensure they talk more than you do. These questions begin with words like &ldquo;how&rdquo; or &ldquo;why,&rdquo; or phrases like &ldquo;help me understand why &hellip;&rdquo;; &ldquo;elaborate on that&hellip;&rdquo;; or &ldquo;what might happen if&hellip;&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>Voice Training </strong></p> <p>Become more in tune to your voice. If you&rsquo;re calling someone on the phone, lay down a digital recorder to record your voice as you&rsquo;re speaking to that person and listen to it later, Price suggests. How did you sound? Was your voice too soft or too loud? Did you talk too slow or too fast? Did you use too many voice fillers, like &ldquo;uh,&rdquo; &ldquo;um,&rdquo; &ldquo;you know,&rdquo; or &ldquo;actually&rdquo;?</p> <p>&ldquo;You will be the best judge of your voice,&rdquo; Price says. &ldquo;You might say &lsquo;I can&rsquo;t believe I was speaking so fast.&rsquo; Or, &lsquo;Why did I ask that question?&rsquo;&rdquo; It can serve as a wake-up call to areas where you might need some vocal improvement.</p> <p>Or, if self-reflection isn&rsquo;t enough, enlist a colleague to be your vocal critic. Ask him or her to pay special attention to your voice in your next company meeting or presentation. You can even provide this person with a checklist of what to rate you on, such as how articulate you were or how was your pitch and your pacing. For even greater voice interventions, check with a community college or a singing or vocal coach (search the Web to find some in your area), and tell them that you want formal training in developing a better speaking voice.</p> <p>After all, &ldquo;a controlled, expressive, authoritative voice will help you persuade and influence your listeners; earn the respect of your boss and coworkers; make sales; gain promotions; and help capture the attention of every audience to whom you present,&rdquo; Price writes in her book <em>Well Said!</em> &ldquo;People want to listen to and do business with those in whom they have confidence. Putting your best voice forward connects you to your listeners and helps build rapport.&rdquo;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-show-author-info"> <div class="field-label">Show Author Info?:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Show Author Info? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-teaser"> <div class="field-label">Teaser:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><p>You use your voice every day in business to connect with clients and peers. But are you leveraging your greatest instrument to improve your professional image?</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-label">Main Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/all/modules/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_SM_voice.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=40752">oct14_SM_voice.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-top3-lp-image"> <div class="field-label">Top 3 Article on Landing Page:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_top3_lp_image" width="149" height="70" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_SM_voice_0.jpg?1413839614" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lp-mainstage-image"> <div class="field-label">Landing Page Mainstage Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lp_mainstage_image" width="830" height="230" alt="" src="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/oct14_LP_SM_voice.jpg?1413839628" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-content"> <div class="field-label">Related Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2013/02/relationship-management-how-words-you-say-may-be-costing">Relationship Management: How the Words You Say May be Costing You Business</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/relationship-management/article/2013/08/8-traits-can-improve-your-customer-relat">8 Traits That Can Improve Your Customer Relationships</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/relationship-management/article/2013/12/are-you-wired-succeed">Are You Wired to Succeed? </a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/relationship-management/article/2014/07/repeat-business-why-your-clients-really-">Repeat Business: Why Your Clients Really Stick By You</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2011/05/relationship-management-how-likable-are-you-really">Relationship Management: How Likable Are You, Really?</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-mainstage-image-display2"> <div class="field-label">Mainstage Image Display on Content:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> No, don't disable the "Main" image on this article </div> </div> </div> Relationship Management Thu, 16 Oct 2014 18:23:46 +0000 echristoffer 17492 at http://realtormag.realtor.org