Articles http://realtormag.realtor.org/articles en An Efficient Way to Beat Out the Competition http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/efficient-way-beat-out-competition <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 the woman who brought a lot of green – in more ways than one – to Kilroy Realty. </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, April 28, 2016</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>When it comes to leasing commercial space, real estate companies are looking for a distinct advantage that will set their properties apart from other buildings in town. Today, that advantage is sustainability.</p> <p>&ldquo;Tenants want to see those LEED-certified plaques. They want to know their landlord is out there exploring avenues to control costs and reduce energy consumption,&rdquo; says Mike Nelson, who&rsquo;s been in commercial real estate for 20 years. He oversees the operations of a portfolio of office buildings in the San Diego area for <a href="http://www.kilroyrealty.com/" target="_blank">Kilroy Realty Corp</a>.</p> <p>In the last five years, sustainability and energy efficiency in commercial buildings have gone from a casual interest among tenants to a must-have, Nelson says. So Kilroy brought in a secret weapon: Sarah Neff.</p> <p>You might call Neff the queen of retrocommissioning. As vice president of sustainability, she researches new technology and service providers for Kilroy, a company nearly 70 years old that owns and manages commercial and office space in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, and the Pacific Northwest.</p> <p>&ldquo;She&rsquo;s extremely knowledgeable and willing to try new things to best capture and optimize the resources we have,&rdquo; Nelson says. &ldquo;She&rsquo;s exciting to work with.&rdquo;</p> <p>Neff and her team have been key in meeting growing consumer demands. In her first four years on the job, she helped Kilroy, which started with no sustainability program, become the number one real estate company in North America for sustainability across all classes two years in a row, according to the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark.</p> <p>Neff received her bachelor&rsquo;s degree from Stanford University in symbolic systems; after a stint at Google, she earned her MBA from Columbia Business School. She was then introduced to Kilroy.</p> <p>She now oversees the implementation of energy and water efficiency projects, a recycling and green cleaning program, all LEED certifications, electric vehicle charging station installations, and the greening of building and construction standards.</p> <p>&ldquo;High efficiency for buildings is the right thing to do, but it also makes great business sense,&rdquo; Neff says. &ldquo;The kinds of tenants we want to attract are tech startups and companies that care about sustainability. Google, for instance, only takes buildings that are LEED-certified, and you don&rsquo;t get on the broker tour for these tenants if you&rsquo;re not LEED-certified.&rdquo;</p> <p>Today, all of Kilroy&rsquo;s development projects have at least a gold-level LEED certification. The company has clients in a variety of industries, including tech, media, telecommunications, entertainment, health care, engineering, biotechnology, and professional services, among others.</p> <p>When California, which has experienced severe drought for several years, enacted a law requiring additional utility disclosures for commercial buildings to meet the state&rsquo;s Energy Star program requirements, Neff took on the significant task of obtaining the necessary usage information from tenants. She then worked with attorneys to add utility consumption disclosure language to the lease agreements.</p> <p>Understanding baseline consumption gives companies like Kilroy a clearer understanding of good energy performance. &ldquo;The industry is waking up to this,&rdquo; Neff says. &ldquo;Investors are currently rewarding transparency even more than performance.&rdquo;</p> <p>Now Kilroy is undertaking a solar initiative. But beyond that, Neff is working to find out how to make solar additions as cost-effective as possible. In some cases, this means pairing solar with battery power.</p> <p>&ldquo;Batteries, from a financial perspective, are great. You can take a building offline and run off battery at peak times, then charge overnight,&rdquo; Neff says. &ldquo;In some places, combining solar with batteries might be the best option. You can charge batteries with solar so the building can run off battery longer throughout the day.&rdquo;</p> <p>Kilroy has also started training janitors at its properties on energy sustainability and recycling initiatives. And the company is involving tenants more and more through social media engagement and formal events.</p> <p>&ldquo;Green building has been a passion of mine for a long time, but this is an opportunity to grow it even bigger,&rdquo; Neff says. &ldquo;I come from an owner&rsquo;s perspective, and we owners are not as typically engaged in conversation as architects and engineers.&rdquo;</p> <p>Neff is currently serving a two-year term as chair of the board of directors for the Los Angeles chapter of the <a href="http://www.usgbc.org/" target="_blank">U.S. Green Building Council</a> and was also <a href="http://go.usgbc.org/index.php/email/emailWebview?mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiTlRJMU5XSXdZbUkyTkRReCIsInQiOiI2Wkl2amZ3R28rblo3bk1VeXA0K1JwcUlwYlBueFwvQlhJZ0p5UHowNzVFN1lScXBFS0tnSHVOUHk4ZkcxNEg3RVJTeUw4b09HSm5NOUY3VlRBdDBBdUYyQUppUXl1dzVMQWpXSzNyZUIzTVk9In0%3D" target="_blank">named</a> to the USGBC National 2016 Advisory Council, which recommends policy and initiatives. Her service comes with perfect timing, as Los Angeles will also be the site for the upcoming Greenbuild International Conference &amp; Expo this October.&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re going to get to show the world all the amazing things we do,&rdquo; Neff says.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Meet the woman who brought a lot of green &ndash; in more ways than one &ndash; to Kilroy Realty.</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="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/1-job-3-truths-and-4-books-for-new-leaders">1 Job, 3 Truths, and 4 Books for New Leaders</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/02/are-your-agents-ready-sell-smart-homes">Are Your Agents Ready to Sell Smart Homes?</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/02/prep-agents-6-smart-home-facts">Prep Agents With 6 Smart Home Facts</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/05/balance-scales-in-commercial-leasing">Balance the Scales in Commercial Leasing</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> Network Thu, 28 Apr 2016 23:23:59 +0000 echristoffer 20996 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Marijuana Clauses Your Lease Should Include http://realtormag.realtor.org/commercial/feature/article/2016/04/marijuana-clauses-your-lease-should-include <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 more states consider legalizing some form of pot, landlords and property managers need to know how to address its use in their buildings. </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, April 28, 2016</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/kyle-kivett">Kyle Kivett</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Marijuana laws are rapidly changing, with at least 20 states considering ballot measures this year to legalize pot in some way. Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia have already legalized medical marijuana. Four of those states &mdash; Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington &mdash; along with D.C. have also legalized recreational pot use. Although cannabis remains illegal under federal law, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency &mdash; which made marijuana a primary target in its &ldquo;war on drugs&rdquo; &mdash; is considering reclassifying it as a Schedule II drug, which could open the door to decriminalizing pot on a federal level.</p> <p>As a result, many more landlords and property managers <a href="/law-and-ethics/feature/article/2015/01/can-you-just-say-no">could face new considerations</a> when it comes to how marijuana laws affect their <a href="https://legaltemplates.net/form/lease-agreement/" target="_blank">lease agreements</a>. There are a number of scenarios related to marijuana legalization you could find yourself in, but if you stay informed, you can take steps to address any changes in the legal landscape.&nbsp;</p> <h4>If Your State Legalizes Recreational or Medical Marijuana&hellip;</h4> <p>Landlords and property managers are not required to accommodate recreational put use under state laws, but they may choose to make some exceptions for tenants who use marijuana for medical purposes. Still, that doesn&rsquo;t mean you have no control over how it&rsquo;s used inside your building. And unless federal law is changed, you may still prohibit marijuana use in any form.</p> <p>One of the first things you need to decide is whether you want to <a href="/daily-news/2014/05/16/medical-marijuana-issues-hazy-for-single-family-homes">allow smoking of any kind in the building</a>. Tobacco, for example, is a legal substance nationwide, but most property and business owners &mdash; restaurants, bars, apartment buildings &mdash; have the right to ban smoking cigarettes inside. The case for marijuana is no different.</p> <p>You can easily add a few sentences to your lease agreement prohibiting smoking or using tobacco or cannabis on the property. However, there are other ways to use medical marijuana besides smoking it, such as using a vaporizer, eating THC-infused edibles, or using cannabis tonics and extracts. You could choose to specify which types of usage are allowed onsite, as long as you include this clause in the lease agreement.</p> <p>Here are some marijuana addendum clauses that can be included in a lease to specify the approved cannabis use:</p> <ol> <li><em>The use of tobacco and cannabis in accordance with state law is allowed on the Premises. Prior written consent of the Landlord is required before medical cannabis may be grown on the Premises.</em></li> <li><em>This is a nonsmoking residence. No smoking, including medical marijuana, inside the home or on the Premise is permitted. However, consuming medical marijuana with a vaporizer or in cannabis edibles, tonics, or concentrates is permitted. </em></li> <li><em>No recreational or medical marijuana may be grown or consumed on the Premises by the Tenant(s) or guest(s) without the prior written consent of the Landlord.&nbsp;</em></li> </ol> <h4>If No Form of Marijuana Is Legal in Your State&hellip;</h4> <p>Then you don&rsquo;t specifically need to address cannabis in your lease agreement because it automatically falls into the category of illegal activity. But &mdash; and this is a big but &mdash; with legal attitudes toward marijuana changing as fast as they are, your opportunity for recourse may become more complicated if you don&rsquo;t explicitly address its use. You should include an anti-drug policy in your lease agreement, and make sure to include a marijuana addendum specifically outlining its prohibited use. Here&rsquo;s an example:</p> <p><em>&ldquo;Usage of cannabis and any other federally prohibited drug is not allowed on the premises. Further, tenant and their guest(s) may not engage in any illegal drug-related activity, including but not limited to medical cannabis on or near the premises. Landlord may terminate this agreement if tenant and/or guests engage in such activities. If this provision is violated, tenants will be subject to charges, damages, and eviction. Tenant forfeits their security deposit if there is any evidence of cannabis use on the premises.&rdquo;</em></p> <h4>Can You Evict a Tenant for Using Marijuana?</h4> <p>In states where marijuana is banned, issuing an <a href="https://legaltemplates.net/form/eviction-notice/" target="_blank">eviction notice</a> to a tenant who violates your anti-drug policy or anti-marijuana clause is fairly straightforward. But even in states where recreational and medical marijuana have been legalized, you have the right to evict tenants who violate the terms of your lease, which would be an eviction for engaging in federally illegal activity. If you ban smoking marijuana &mdash; but not other forms of consumption of the drug &mdash; and a tenant continually violates that term, you can evict. This is why it is so important for a landlord to clearly state the rules concerning marijuana use in their lease agreements.</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 more states consider legalizing some form of pot, landlords and property managers need to know how to address its use in their buildings.</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/apr16_C_leases.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=30414">apr16_C_leases.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/apr16_C_leases_0.jpg?1461878604" /> </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/apr16_LP_C_leases.jpg?1461878624" /> </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/2015/01/can-you-just-say-no">Can You Just Say No?</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/05/16/medical-marijuana-issues-hazy-for-single-family-homes">Medical Marijuana Issues Hazy for Single-Family Homes</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/commercial/feature/article/2015/08/pot-businesses-need-you-clear-haze">Pot Businesses Need You to Clear the Haze</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, 28 Apr 2016 17:15:38 +0000 gwood 20993 at http://realtormag.realtor.org ‘Coffee’s for Closers Only’ http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/coffee-s-for-closers-only <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"> Get your real estate team to drink up with the right motivational tactics. </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, April 25, 2016</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/kevin-ortner">Kevin Ortner</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Most salespeople are probably familiar with the classic play &ldquo;<a href="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104348/" target="_blank">Glengarry Glen Ross</a>.&rdquo; In the 1992 film adaptation, Alec Baldwin plays a corporate boss named Blake who is sent in to motivate a team of real estate salesmen. During Blake&rsquo;s colorful lecture, one of the men stands up to get a cup of coffee, and Blake stops him in his tracks with the infamous line, &ldquo;Put that coffee down. Coffee&rsquo;s for closers only.&rdquo;</p> <p>While this tactic may have worked for the unethical, fast-talking hucksters of the film&rsquo;s fictional Premier Properties, in today&rsquo;s world, taking this approach won&rsquo;t get you very far.</p> <p>Plenty of studies point to the influence of positive motivation. In fact, <a href="https://www.glassdoor.com/press/employees-stay-longer-company-bosses-showed-appreciation-glassdoor-survey/" target="_blank">a study by Glassdoor</a>, a job-posting and recruiting site, showed that 81 percent of employees are driven to work harder when their boss shows appreciation for their work. On the other hand, a demanding boss and fear of losing one&rsquo;s job motivated far fewer survey respondents&mdash;38 percent and 37 percent, respectively.</p> <p>Rather than verbally attacking team members &mdash; or attempting to revoke coffee privileges &mdash; consider employing some of these techniques instead.</p> <p><strong>Have regular &ldquo;lunch and learn&rdquo; sessions.</strong> The polar opposite of anything that Blake would ever do, lunch and learn sessions can be a great way to open up communication between agents, giving them a chance to learn without pressure. Salespeople can be encouraged to share how they handle certain aspects of their jobs or transactions in an effort to enlighten and help other team members. These sessions are a great way to create a collaborative environment.</p> <p><strong>Host creative brainstorming events. </strong>We all know that brainstorming with someone else can often be more effective than trying to come up with solutions on your own. But how can you get your agents involved?</p> <p>&ldquo;The worst way to do brainstorming is to just sit around and talk,&rdquo; <a href="http://www.inc.com/guides/2010/11/how-to-run-a-brainstorming-session.html" target="_blank">says Keith Sawyer</a>, a professor of psychology and education at Washington University in St. Louis. Instead, Sawyer recommends holding the session in a bright, spacious room, with plenty of space for walking around. Some companies find it helpful to have a variety of ways for everyone to get their ideas out. This means providing markers and white boards or tablets and software. Sawyer also advocates inviting a mix of staff from a range of departments, from education to marketing.</p> <p>&ldquo;There needs to be that feeling of &lsquo;We&rsquo;re in this together, we&rsquo;re doing something that&rsquo;s really important, and we really need to pull together and get this done,&rsquo;&rdquo; Sawyer says.</p> <p><strong>Engage in improv roleplaying</strong>. Roleplaying has long been an effective training tool in sales meetings. Having to think on your toes teaches listening skills, improves response time, and sharpens reactions. It also encourages creative problem-solving. Additionally, roleplaying is a tremendous confidence booster, pushing agents out of their comfort zone and forcing them to face their fears. Teams that continually engage in roleplaying <a href="https://trainingmag.com/3-benefits-making-role-play-part-training" target="_blank">are more likely to outperform competitors</a> who don&rsquo;t engage in this activity &mdash; a good reason to consider adding it to your training curricula. One particularly useful exercise is using improv roleplaying to address potential objections. This will give the team practical solutions and skills they need to best address clients&rsquo; concerns.</p> <p><strong>Hold internal &ldquo;hackathons.&rdquo;</strong> Hailing from the days where programmers and designers would get together and collaborate to solve a problem, hackathons today are used in <a href="http://www.inc.com/robin-camarote/what-your-business-can-learn-from-hackathons.html" target="_blank">a wide range of different business environments</a>. This approach can be especially useful for tackling difficult problems head on. It could be used to brainstorm ideas for lead-generation techniques, updates to agent websites, efficient office workflow, and more. Instead of sweeping issues under the rug, the team comes together and works in a highly collaborative environment for a few hours or days to find solutions.</p> <p><strong>Lead by action.</strong> Finally, none of the above will make much difference if you&rsquo;re not leading your team. This means standing up, taking action, and leading by example. Avoid sending conflicting messages; you&rsquo;ve got to walk the walk. For instance, don&rsquo;t leave early on Fridays if that&rsquo;s typically the busiest day for your team. Set a precedent and stay. When things get tough, don&rsquo;t avoid conversations. Keep the door open and encourage your staff to approach you with any questions and concerns they have. Remove frustration from the equation by giving your agents everything they need to do their jobs. Work to make your staff&rsquo;s jobs easier, and they&rsquo;ll appreciate you for it &mdash; and will be more productive as a result. Remember, being a leader isn&rsquo;t about having a title; it&rsquo;s about influencing people through inspiration and example.</p> <p>As you can see, these strategies are a far cry from the high-stress, competitive tactics of &ldquo;Glengarry Glen Ross.&rdquo; If you&rsquo;re looking to motivate your agents, encouraging teamwork is a better approach than instituting strategies that inevitably pit team members against each other. Giving salespeople the tools and training they need to reach their goals will enable them to succeed. By removing fear from the equation, you&rsquo;ll draw the best out of everyone &mdash; and your brokerage will reap the rewards of a motivated salesforce.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Get your real estate team to drink up with the right motivational tactics.</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="/sales-and-marketing/success-stories/article/2012/12/sharing-motivation">Sharing Motivation</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/feature/article/2010/03/do-sales-awards-matter">Do Sales Awards Matter?</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/feature/article/2005/12/motivation-strategies-keeping-rewards-truly-rewarding">Motivation Strategies: Keeping Rewards Truly Rewarding</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/03/build-support-motivate">Build, Support, Motivate</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> Network Mon, 25 Apr 2016 23:08:28 +0000 echristoffer 20973 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Customizable Templates, Tools For Your Office http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/customizable-templates-tools-for-your-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"> NAR may have just the thing that will save you time and money. Check out its plethora of downloadable letters and forms, cutting-edge data tools, and consumer-focused education resources. </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, April 22, 2016</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>Have you tried to write a referral request but didn&rsquo;t know exactly how to ask? Are you crunched for time when it comes to writing thank-you notes? Do you need a quick way to access market insights?</p> <p>If you want to make life a little easier for you and your agents, take advantage of NAR&rsquo;s array of prewritten real estate business templates, marketing materials, property data tools, and office resources. These customizable, downloadable documents will help your team farm and prospect, stay in touch with past clients, and create higher-quality reports and presentations and help you better manage your teams.</p> <ul> <li>Choose from 23 <a href="http://www.realtor.org/library/real-estate-business-letter-templates" target="_blank">business letter templates</a> for referral requests, farming and prospecting, news and announcements, and more. &nbsp;</li> <li>Give clients and prospects a behind-the-scenes look at the job of a REALTOR&reg; with this handout: <a href="http://www.realtor.org/articles/your-real-estate-professional-behind-the-scenes" target="_blank">Home Buying in Six Steps: Your Real Estate Professional Behind the Scenes</a>.</li> <li>Educate clients about the buying and selling process with <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/handouts-for-customers" target="_blank">REALTOR&reg; Magazine Handouts for Customers</a>, which cover everything from putting a home on the market and hiring contractors to useful real estate terms and preparing for a short sale.</li> <li><a href="http://www.realtor.org/logos-and-trademark-rules" target="_blank">Download REALTOR&reg; logos</a> for use on your website and in your sales and marketing materials.</li> <li>April is <a href="http://www.realtor.org/programs/fair-housing-program/resources" target="_blank">Fair Housing Month</a>. Get NAR&#39;s Field Guide to Fair Housing, posters to print out for your office, and other resources.</li> <li><a href="http://www.realtor.org/topics/realtor-safety" target="_blank">Make safety a year-round priority</a> at your company. Download safety presentation materials for your office, videos, as well as sign-in and other safety forms.</li> </ul> <p>And you&rsquo;ve got to try REALTORS Property Resource&reg;, the nation&rsquo;s largest property database that&rsquo;s exclusively available to REALTORS&reg;. RPR provides brokers and their agents with customizable tools that include information on residential and commercial properties as well as on vacant land. Compiling data from multiple sources into one place, RPR is populated with MLS data as well as public records such as prior transactions, zoning, school district data, demographics, and tax information. Plus, it&rsquo;s packed with tutorial videos that teach you and your team how to use RPR.</p> <p>Brokers and managers can also take advantage of RPR&#39;s Market Data Tool, which provides a deeper dive into market conditions, agent productivity, and market share to help you make strategic business decisions. With RPR, you can compile multiple MLS data into a single report, which will allow for comparisons between company offices. To learn more about what RPR offers brokers, visit <a href="http://blog.narrpr.com/broker/" target="_blank">http://blog.narrpr.com/broker/</a>.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>NAR may have just the thing that will save you time and money. Check out its plethora of downloadable letters and forms, cutting-edge data tools, and consumer-focused education resources.</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="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/02/sales-meetings-your-agents-will-care-about">Sales Meetings Your Agents Will Care About</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/1-job-3-truths-and-4-books-for-new-leaders">1 Job, 3 Truths, and 4 Books for New Leaders</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/02/6-tips-for-creating-zen-office">6 Tips for Creating a Zen Office</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/12/brokers-can-tap-exclusive-training-resources">Brokers Can Tap Exclusive Training Resources</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> Network Fri, 22 Apr 2016 22:33:39 +0000 echristoffer 20965 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 6 Ways Tech Will Change How You List Homes http://realtormag.realtor.org/technology/feature/article/2016/04/6-ways-tech-will-change-how-you-list-homes <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"> At this week’s RESO conference, experts explained how innovations would change how MLSs, brokers, and agents bring property to the market. </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, April 21, 2016</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>After what&#39;s felt like years of excruciatingly slow change, it seems multiple listing services are poised to embrace a number of new technologies and big shifts in the ways sellers list their homes and buyers search for them. At least, that was the overriding mood at the spring conference of the <a href="http://www.reso.org/" target="_blank">Real Estate Standards Organization</a>, held in Chicago this week.</p> <p>RESO Executive Director Jeremy Crawford addressed the sold-out conference, saying that not only is RESO focused on continual development of the Data Dictionary and Real Standard Transaction Specifications&mdash;a framework to facilitate the exchange of real estate data&mdash;but they also work to get ahead of challenges to the listing systems in place in the United States and Canada. &ldquo;We&rsquo;re looking for solutions for what&rsquo;s going on in the industry today and five years from now,&rdquo; Crawford said.</p> <p>Attendees heard from a wide variety of speakers about how innovations coming to the market in the next few years could affect the way real estate professionals interact with MLSs, listing portals, and consumers. Here are a few trends real estate professionals should be on the lookout for in the coming years.</p> <ol> <li><strong>Microclimate monitoring</strong>. Tom Flanagan, vice president of technology for Alain Pinel, REALTORS&reg;, in San Francisco, told attendees about his project creating and mounting weather stations on his brokerage&rsquo;s offices. The stations, which cost less than $100 to build, measure everything from carbon dioxide and noise levels to humidity and temperature, helping them better understand what it&rsquo;s like to live in any particular place in the Bay Area. &ldquo;Microclimates change almost by the block in the city,&rdquo; Flanagan says. &ldquo;All of these environmental factors impact peoples&rsquo; lives, and they&rsquo;re critical in the homebuying process.&rdquo;</li> <li><strong>Next-level house numbers</strong>. RESO is currently working on creating a &ldquo;property unique identifier&rdquo; or PUID for every structure in the United States and Canada. RESO board member Rebecca Jensen&mdash;who is also CEO of MRED, the aggregator for the Chicago-area MLS&mdash;told the audience that having a way to identify every property, whether it&rsquo;s for sale or not, would be incredibly helpful for the real estate industry and many other stakeholders. &ldquo;There are a ton of different business cases for that,&rdquo; she said, noting in particular the mortgage and title insurance industries. &ldquo;If we could do this, it would bring a lot of order.&rdquo; However, she noted that such a game-changing development will take time. &ldquo;We understand that the scope is quite big,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;This is a big, hairy, audacious goal.&rdquo;</li> <li><strong>Making listings easier to see.</strong> Tom Weiss-Lehman, data production specialist at Redfin, said one development his company is interested in is enabling the home-showing experience to be &ldquo;more Uber-esque.&rdquo; He says if MLSs could better encode information about the availability of a property, they could develop a system where buyers could schedule a showing with a click of a button. &ldquo;Most of the time, that information is in the system and doesn&rsquo;t show through to us, or it&rsquo;s in the agent&rsquo;s notes,&rdquo; he said, lamenting that they haven&rsquo;t figured out how to extract that data in a standardized format. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a little bit of a challenge.&rdquo;</li> <li><strong>The democratization of big data</strong>. John Tolva, president of PositivEnergy Practice and the former chief technology officer for the city of Chicago, told attendees that cities have been measuring and publishing data for many years, both to decrease inefficiencies and build trust. But he says now that the Internet of Things is &ldquo;beyond the hype curve,&rdquo; ordinary residents are gathering, cross-referencing, and publishing data that can help real estate pros better describe what it&rsquo;s like to live in a particular area. &ldquo;Now it&rsquo;s about a person <em>not</em> in the government,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s about being more citizen-focused [and] thinking of the city as a platform.&rdquo; Chad Curry, managing director of NAR&rsquo;s Center for REALTOR&reg; Technology, hopes to help members tap into that platform. &ldquo;We could have been resistant to this,&rdquo; he said, noting that some data could be considered stigmatizing. &ldquo;But the consumer wants this. They want to know this.&rdquo;</li> <li><strong>Smarter MLS fields that do the work for you</strong>. Laura Stukel, energy efficiency consultant and real estate pro at L.W. Reedy Real Estate, has been working with technology companies, REALTOR&reg; groups, MLSs, and government agencies to coordinate work on the Department of Energy&rsquo;s Home Energy Information Accelerator for the last year. She told attendees she&rsquo;s excited about how the auto-population of data in the MLS can help educate listing agents who don&rsquo;t know much about eco-friendly improvements. &ldquo;Listing agents sometimes don&rsquo;t know what this is, and they don&rsquo;t want to touch it with a 10-foot pole,&rdquo; she said. Automatic population &ldquo;can really help them understand.&rdquo; For example, she said that for a condo building that had achieved LEED certification, that data could be auto-populated in the MLS every time an individual condo from that building went up for sale. She said the next step would be collecting and displaying such information in the single-family housing market.</li> <li><strong>Innovation in other industries means there&rsquo;s no rest for real estate technologists</strong>. The promise of new efficiencies is exciting, but it will also create demand for more of the same. Glenn Phillips, CEO of Lake Homes Realty in Pelham, Ala., worried rapid advances in technology happening in so many other industries could make real estate companies and MLSs look like &ldquo;slackers&rdquo; by comparison. &ldquo;The consumer is expecting that we&rsquo;ve already figured these things out,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;That&rsquo;s going to be a problem for everyone in the industry.&rdquo;</li> </ol> <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>At this week&rsquo;s RESO conference, experts explained how innovations would change how MLSs, brokers, and agents bring property to the market.</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/apr16_T_listings.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=37598">apr16_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/apr16_T_listings_0.jpg?1461363460" /> </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/apr16_LP_T_listings.jpg?1461363653" /> </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="/technology/feature/article/2015/03/internet-things-organized-real-estate">The Internet of Things &amp; Organized Real Estate</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/news-and-commentary/feature/article/2015/10/rechanneling-data-flow">Rechanneling the Data Flow</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <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> </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, 21 Apr 2016 21:11:10 +0000 mwhite 20957 at http://realtormag.realtor.org How to Get—and Keep—International Clients http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2016/04/how-get-and-keep-international-clients <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"> Tips for where to find overseas buyers and how to communicate with them through the transaction. </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, April 22, 2016</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>So you want to expand your client base globally and reach buyers overseas. How do you get their attention from across the pond? In many cases, you can&rsquo;t rely on good search engine optimization to draw international prospects to your website. You have to take a more proactive approach to find them.</p> <p>Start by networking online with real estate professionals worldwide. For REALTORS&reg; who have earned the Certified International Property Specialist designation, there&rsquo;s a <a href="http://www.realtor.org/cips-search" target="_blank">database at realtor.org</a> that can help overseas buyers and their agents find qualified professionals in the U.S. market they&rsquo;re targeting. But you can also join organizations such as the <a href="http://www.fiabci-usa.com/">International Real Estate Federation</a> or promote listings on <a href="https://www.listhub.com/listhub-global.html" target="_blank">ListHub Global</a> or <a href="http://www.worldproperties.com/en/Properties.aspx" target="_blank">WorldProperties.com</a>, the website of the International Consortium of Real Estate Associations.</p> <h4>Making the First Contact</h4> <p>When an international prospect contacts you, it&rsquo;s imperative to remove language barriers from the start. Dan Easton, CIPS, GRI, broker-owner of Three Springs Realty in Blairsville, Ga., uses <a href="https://translate.google.com/manager/website/" target="_blank">Google Translate</a>, which allows text on his website to be translated into more than 90 languages. Visitors just select from a drop-down menu to choose their language. He&rsquo;s also equipped his site with widgets for metric and currency conversion.</p> <p>&ldquo;I want my foreign buyers to feel as comfortable as possible about contacting me,&rdquo; Easton says. He&rsquo;s also learned to add even more information to his listings to give clients who can&rsquo;t be there in person more of an incentive to work with him. &ldquo;The biggest difference between [foreign buyers] and Americans is when foreign buyers are interested in a property, they may want to see a floor plan along with photos and video.&rdquo; Adding room-by-room dimensions to your property descriptions can also help international buyers with their search when they can&rsquo;t pay a visit in person.</p> <h4>Keeping Them Engaged</h4> <p>E-mail and texting are a standard way to keep in contact with long-distance clients, but it wouldn&rsquo;t be wise to rely solely on those forms of communication. Though many international buyers purchase property sight unseen, it doesn&rsquo;t work that way when choosing an agent, says Marsha Collins-Mroz, CIPS, GRI, a sales associate with HomeSmart Connect in Arlington Heights, Ill.</p> <p>At the beginning of a relationship with an overseas client, you should set up a video chat via <a href="http://www.skype.com/en/" target="_blank">Skype</a>, <a href="https://www.join.me/" target="_blank">Join Me</a>, or another service to establish rapport. Have a translator on hand in case you need extra help communicating across languages. &ldquo;People do want to see you at some point and know who they are working with,&rdquo; Collins-Mroz says. Services like Join Me allow you to share your screen so you can show a listings page while discussing properties.</p> <p>During the initial video meet-and-greet, you should ask international clients what their preferred method of communication is, says Mallina Wilson, ABR, CIPS, a sales associate with Keller Williams Western Realty in Bellingham, Wash. E-mail may be sufficient for some, while others may prefer certain apps that allow for photo sharing, texting, and voice memos all in one. <a href="http://www.wechat.com/en/" target="_blank">WeChat</a> is such an app popular in Asia, and Wilson says she often uses it as her primary correspondence with Chinese buyers.</p> <p>&ldquo;You should be using whatever tools and technology your clients do,&rdquo; Wilson says. Collins-Mroz also uses <a href="http://www.viber.com/en/" target="_blank">Viber</a>, an app that allows users to call each other free from anywhere in the world.</p> <h4>Doing Something Extra</h4> <p>International transactions are often more difficult to navigate, so it&rsquo;s important to go the extra mile to show clients your commitment to their satisfaction. For brokers, that may mean hiring agents or someone on staff who can speak the language of your target demographic. Paul Martis, CIPS, a commercial broker with Coldwell Banker in Oak Brook, Ill., hires sales associated who are fluent in Mandarin and Hindi in hopes of attracting Asian clients locally and abroad.</p> <p>&ldquo;When you&rsquo;re trying to work with a foreign investor, it&rsquo;s much easier when you have someone on your team who speaks their language and understands where they&rsquo;re coming from,&rdquo; Martis says.</p> <p>Individual agents may decide to have a translator on hand during all stages of the transaction in order to make clients feel like they&rsquo;re being heard at every stage. Wilson and Collins-Mroz have translators ready for three-way calling with clients and to translate documents. Collins-Mroz sometimes even travels abroad to deliver documents to her overseas clients and explain them in person&mdash;which doubles as a good excuse to get out of the country and immerse herself in another culture, she says.</p> <p>But a big key to successful transactions with overseas clients is providing enough photos and video of a property to make them feel well-informed about their purchase choice. Silvia Dukes, CIPS, CRS, a sales associate with Tropic Shores Realty in Spring Hill, Fla., says most of her clients want to see more imagery than a typical listing provides. &ldquo;I&rsquo;ll take as many pictures as they want to see, and I&rsquo;ll create video tours exclusively for them and upload them to YouTube,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;I want to do as much as I can to make sure they know what they are buying and will not be disappointed once they get here.&rdquo;</p> <p>That kind of accommodation resonates with foreign buyers because they typically need more time to understand how U.S. real estate differs from their home country and to make a purchase decision. &ldquo;Otherwise, working with a foreign buyer is not that different than working with a client who is out of state,&rdquo; Dukes says. &ldquo;You just have to keep track of the difference in time zones.&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>Tips for where to find overseas buyers and how to communicate with them through the transaction.</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/apr16_SM_global.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=113806">apr16_SM_global.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/apr16_SM_global_0.jpg?1461361658" /> </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/apr16_LP_SM_global.jpg?1461361685" /> </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/2014/01/start-and-spread-your-global-brand">Start and Spread Your Global Brand</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/technology/cool-tools/article/2014/10/3-tools-for-working-multicultural-buyers">3 Tools for Working With Multicultural Buyers</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/09/27/5-tips-for-working-asian-clients">5 Tips for Working With Asian Clients</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, 21 Apr 2016 21:52:51 +0000 gwood 20958 at http://realtormag.realtor.org So You Want to Create a Real Estate App… http://realtormag.realtor.org/technology/feature/article/2016/04/so-you-want-create-real-estate-app <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 if you have a great idea and a stellar tech team, making, testing, and marketing an app isn’t easy. Learn how one real estate pro tackled the challenge. </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, April 15, 2016</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>For Tom Luker, the old saying &ldquo;there&rsquo;s an app for that&rdquo; meshes well with the even older saying &ldquo;necessity is the mother of invention.&rdquo;</p> <p>Back when the housing market was emerging from recession, Luker and his partners at <a href="https://lpg.managebuilding.com/Resident/PublicPages/CustomPage.aspx?cp=22">Luker Properties Group LLC</a> in Oviedo, Fla., were in the process of shifting their business model from residential and vacation home sales to property management and a turnkey solution for investors. As co-owner and vice president of sales for the company, Luker was scoping out listings in Central Florida and trying to get information to his investor clients as quickly as possible. But he was having trouble keeping the &ldquo;spider web of information&rdquo; straight and quickly compiling and presenting the facts in a way that his clients could easily digest.</p> <p>&ldquo;I was going out and looking at so many properties,&rdquo; he remembers. &ldquo;I had to transmit [to clients] what I had seen and what my thoughts were and collate the two. But I was just losing track.&rdquo;</p> <p>When he wasn&rsquo;t searching for investment properties, Luker was scouring app stores for a solution to this business problem. He and his father and brother, both partners at Luker Properties, downloaded a few that seemed to offer what they were looking for. But in the end, nothing on the market had all the pieces they needed in one product.</p> <p>At this point, Luker wondered if he could invent the solution himself. He called Stanley Choung, one of his investor clients based in New York. Luker just wanted to get Choung&rsquo;s take on the idea, since he had a technological background outside of real estate. Choung ended up partnering with Luker to create 37 Cents LLC, the company behind the <a href="http://www.homenotesapp.com/" target="_blank">HomeNotes</a> app they created together (now&nbsp;<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/homenotes/id1035306746?mt=8">available in iTunes</a>). Choung&rsquo;s old college roommate, Daniel Pilch, happened to be a partner at <a href="http://www.freeportmetrics.com/" target="_blank">Freeport Metrics</a>, a software development company in Portland, Maine, that they hired to do the development work.</p> <p>Luker is pleased with how the app turned out. Not only is it growing in popularity, it also helps him operate in a more nimble way as multiple-offer situations become more common in his market. &ldquo;When the property comes up, you have to be ready to move,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;By the time I get back to the office, I&rsquo;m writing offers instead of e-mails describing the property.&rdquo;</p> <p>But even though they hired a software company to create the app, the development process wasn&rsquo;t easy. Here, he offers some lessons for brokers and salespeople who might want to follow in his footsteps.</p> <h4>Get Your Vision Down on Paper</h4> <p>Luker recommends using a wireframe sketching program such as <a href="https://balsamiq.com/" target="_blank">Balsamiq</a> (the one he and his partner chose) to visually communicate how you imagine the app working within the device interface. They used the free version of the software, which allowed them to show engineers at Freeport what they were looking for without having to invest money and time in professional development tools. &ldquo;It helped me just to start putting my ideas into motion,&rdquo; Luker says.</p> <h4>Make Time to Engage in the Process</h4> <p>Once they hired Freeport, Luker and Choung didn&rsquo;t just hand over their ideas and hope for the best. They had weekly meetings to stay on top of the process and spent several hours each day testing and working with the developers. Luker didn&rsquo;t want the app development work to cut into the time he spent on his real estate business, so he worked on the app in the evenings.</p> <p>&ldquo;You want to find as many bugs as possible before it hits the market,&rdquo; he says, noting that one of his main tasks was to tax the software as much as possible to try to find the app&rsquo;s weak spots. &ldquo;Once we found we couldn&rsquo;t make it crash, we knew it was ready to release.&rdquo;</p> <h4>There Is No Launch Break</h4> <p>Even after the initial release on August 31, 2015, Luker says they&rsquo;re still continually working on new versions and bug fixes. They&rsquo;re also constantly looking at ways to make the app more universally useful. They&rsquo;ve gotten interest from users as far away as New Zealand and Dubai, and they want to add more measurement and currency options to better cater to their growing international user base.</p> <p>&ldquo;Each time you do even a minor change, you have to label it as a new version,&rdquo; he says, noting they have plans for integrations with other information services, such as Google Maps. &ldquo;We&rsquo;re constantly throwing ideas at each other.&rdquo;</p> <h4>You&rsquo;ll Need Your Marketing Hat, Too</h4> <p>Just like a listing, you should do market analysis to see other comparable products that are on the market. Is there already an app that serves your target audience? &ldquo;This is a tool that I personally need,&rdquo; Luker remembers thinking to himself when the initial idea came to him. &ldquo;Is this something I need, or is this something that people need in general? Do we actually create this or not?&rdquo;</p> <p>But your marketing skills will really shine after the app is live. Luker says the development company offers advertising services, but due to their target audience, he felt he and his partners would be better positioned to get the word out. &ldquo;We&rsquo;re joining local investor clubs to really do some direct marketing,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;This is a pretty specific and targeted audience that we&rsquo;re looking at, and we were positioned pretty well. We&rsquo;ll use our connections within the market.&rdquo;</p> <h4>Don&rsquo;t Expect to Get Rich Quick</h4> <p>The team decided on a three-tiered pricing option for HomeNotes, though the app doesn&rsquo;t have any paid users yet. Luker says most of the approximately 200 users they have right now are still in their free-trial period. &ldquo;For us, that&rsquo;s OK. We are now starting to put a marketing plan together and really give it a push, so this is the next step on our journey,&rdquo; Luker says.</p> <p>Not only do they hope to eventually reimburse themselves for the initial development funds they invested, but Luker notes that ongoing fixes and additions means they&rsquo;re often in contact with Freeport Metrics. Also, because they didn&rsquo;t want users to weigh down the memory on their devices with the pictures and data being saved on the app, 37 Cents LLC pays for the servers that allow users to save media to the cloud. &ldquo;All of that costs money to do,&rdquo; he says, advising that real estate pros who are interested in deploying their own apps &ldquo;definitely need to budget for ongoing costs.&rdquo;</p> <h4>Be Patient</h4> <p>More than anything else, Luker counsels would-be app inventors to cultivate endurance. He says the rush of the &ldquo;eureka&rdquo; moment can push some to move too quickly and advises anyone looking to embark on such a project to hunker down for the long haul. &ldquo;I was itching to get this thing out,&rdquo; he says, noting that the longer timeline was one of the more surprising revelations for him in this process. &ldquo;You get excited and you have an idea and you want to bring it to market as soon as possible.&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>Even if you have a great idea and a stellar tech team, making, testing, and marketing an app isn&rsquo;t easy. Learn how one real estate pro tackled the challenge.</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/apr16_T_app_dev.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=33164">apr16_T_app_dev.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/apr16_T_app_dev_0.jpg?1460757540" /> </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/apr16_LP_T_app_dev.jpg?1460757561" /> </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="/technology/cool-tools/article/2013/01/diy-app">DIY App</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/technology/feature/article/2014/07/real-estate-apps-have-they-downloaded-yours-yet">Real Estate Apps: Have They Downloaded Yours Yet?</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/technology/feature/article/2013/09/best-web-2013-apps">Best of the Web 2013: Apps</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, 15 Apr 2016 18:52:51 +0000 mwhite 20931 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Will Renters Embrace the Adult Dorm Trend? http://realtormag.realtor.org/commercial/feature/article/2016/04/will-renters-embrace-adult-dorm-trend <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 how co-living offers the chance to make micro apartments more attractive to urban renters. </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, April 13, 2016</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/dan-weil">Dan Weil</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Coliving apartment complexes&mdash;micro apartments with a heavy social layer added on&mdash;are sprouting up in big cities where rents have soared. The idea is that millennials seek both affordable living arrangements and friend networks as they make their way from college into the work world.</p> <p>&ldquo;Coliving provides an affordable way to settle into a new city,&rdquo; says Jason Stoffer, a partner at San Francisco/Seattle-based venture capital firm Maveron, which backs Common, a company that operates two coliving buildings in Brooklyn, N.Y. &ldquo;It also feeds a need for community. Say you move to New York City for a small company, and you don&rsquo;t know anyone. It&rsquo;s lonely, and that&rsquo;s not addressed by [traditional apartment complexes.]&rdquo;</p> <p>Other cities seeing this trend include San Francisco and Washington, D.C. The apartments can range from 175-square-foot studios to 550-square-foot one- or two-bedroom units. Rents generally start around $1,800 and can reach $3,500. Meanwhile, the median rent in Manhattan reached record highs in February; studios were going for $2,351 and one-bedroom units were at $3,400, according to data from real estate appraisal company Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate.</p> <p>The coliving units are often furnished, including space-saving items such as fold-up beds, and may include maid service. WeWork&rsquo;s WeLive buildings in New York City and Crystal City, Virginia (outside Washington, D.C.), charge a monthly fee of $125 for cable, Internet service, utilities, furniture, kitchenware, laundry, group activities, a cleaning service, and other expenses.</p> <p>The idea of bringing housekeeping into units represents part of a trend toward &ldquo;hotelification of residential spaces,&rdquo; says Chris Bledsoe, cofounder of <a href="http://www.ollie.co/">Ollie</a> (a play on the term &ldquo;all-inclusive&rdquo;), a company that manages a 207-unit coliving building on the Upper West Side of Manhattan and plans to open another in the borough&rsquo;s Kips Bay neighborhood soon. He says that the exceptional space and services luxury hotels offer to well-heeled guests can be accessible to all.</p> <p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re saying normal people like this too, and to fund this service we eliminate less-valued space,&rdquo; Bledsoe says. &ldquo;You can get housekeeping, Wi-Fi, and furniture in a unit by cutting space. Do you really need dining space?&rdquo;</p> <p>Residents often share kitchens and lounges, with social events like potluck dinners encouraged. Common has a small budget for its residents to run these events, and at one of its buildings, tenants established a book club and movie nights.</p> <p>&ldquo;This goes hand-in-hand with the sharing economy,&rdquo; says Brad Hunter, chief economist for Hanley Wood Co.&rsquo;s housing research firm Metrostudy in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. &ldquo;I think it&rsquo;s a real concept. You have co-working, car sharing, bike sharing, Airbnb. This absolutely makes sense, especially with the affordability issue of renting apartments.&rdquo;</p> <p>Millennials have embraced the sharing economy, and they are the ones who have the most problems with rent affordability, Hunter notes. &ldquo;They want to be in urban areas, and sometimes that is prohibitively expensive.&rdquo; Also, as they aren&rsquo;t too far removed from college dorm life, coliving isn&rsquo;t too big an environmental shift.</p> <p>But it&rsquo;s not just millennials who are interested in coliving. Forty percent of Ollie&rsquo;s Upper West Side residents are outside that demographic. They include recent divorcees, empty nesters and retirees who want to be close to the city&rsquo;s activities, and long-distance commuters who need a low-maintenance crash pad in the city, Bledsoe says.</p> <p>Despite their somewhat itinerant profile, tenants have recently surprised some property managers with an eagerness to sign longer-term leases than the usual month-to-month agreements that are common to coliving arrangements. &ldquo;This winter we offered slight discounts in exchange for a longer stay [of] six to 12 months,&rdquo; says Brad Hargreaves, CEO of Common. &ldquo;More than 70 percent of our members took us up on it. That&rsquo;s great for building a community.&rdquo;</p> <p>All of Ollie&rsquo;s Upper West Side tenants have leases of at least one year, and 20 percent opted for durations of more than two years, Bledsoe says. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s not as transient a community as we anticipated.&rdquo;</p> <p>What&rsquo;s good for tenants is apparently good for landlords too. Executives at both Ollie and Common report that the buildings they manage are profitable. &ldquo;Our investors are very happy,&rdquo; Bledsoe says. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a sustainable way to do attainable housing.&rdquo; He notes that just because the coliving units are smaller doesn&rsquo;t mean that rents have to be reduced proportionally. &ldquo;The smaller the unit, the higher per-square-foot price for leases. Tenants are paying for performance and functionality. They don&rsquo;t think about rent per-square-foot.&rdquo;</p> <p>There are plans for expansion in the works at WeLive, Common, and Ollie. Bledsoe says that Ollie is even considering partnering with a nonprofit that houses several hundred teachers in Tulsa. The group found that when teachers are housed downtown, there&rsquo;s a 40 percent retention rate at the end of two years, compared to only 20 percent in suburban locations. &ldquo;They&rsquo;re interested in providing a living experience for teachers that makes them stick around longer,&rdquo; Bledsoe says. He notes that, thanks to the subsidy paid by the nonprofit, &ldquo;essentially the teacher would pay $1 per square foot.&rdquo;</p> <p>Alan Durning, executive director of Sightline Institute, a social policy think tank in Seattle, says that while some cities may resist coliving due to concerns over high-density housing, the opportunities are plentiful. &ldquo;I think the market is absolutely enormous.&rdquo;</p> <p>He views coliving developments as a sort of throwback to the room-and-board houses that were common in big cities around 100 years ago. &ldquo;You&rsquo;d rent a bedroom; the bathroom was down the hall, and a dining hall provided meals. It&rsquo;s interesting that the old style has been re-created.&rdquo;</p> <p>Of course, these group living arrangements eventually fell out of style as Americans embraced more individualistic digs. Still, experts say that even if the trend is short-lived, or if an individual coliving project does fail to make money for its investors, it can always be converted into standard rentals. &ldquo;There&rsquo;s still huge demand for rental space, and there are other viable models that could be utilized,&rdquo; Hunter said. &ldquo;So the risk isn&rsquo;t too big.&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 how co-living offers the chance to make micro apartments more attractive to urban renters.&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/apr16_C_coliving.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=43353">apr16_C_coliving.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/apr16_C_coliving_0.jpg?1460666930" /> </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/apr16_LP_C_coliving.jpg?1460666980" /> </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/feature/article/2013/09/whats-trending-in-real-estate">What&#039;s Trending in Real Estate</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2016/03/17/millennials-spur-micro-apartment-boom">Millennials Spur Micro-Apartment Boom</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2016/04/13/will-cohousing-catch-boomers">Will Cohousing Catch on With Boomers?</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, 13 Apr 2016 16:22:47 +0000 mwhite 20918 at http://realtormag.realtor.org How Marriage Equality Transformed a REALTOR’S® Life http://realtormag.realtor.org/news-and-commentary/feature/article/2016/04/how-marriage-equality-transformed-realtor-s-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"> Jim Obergefell launched a career in real estate just before a landmark Supreme Court decision rerouted his plans. </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, April 12, 2016</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/wendy-cole">Wendy Cole</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Jim Obergefell was ready for a career change when he got his real estate license in December 2014. The former corporate project manager and IT consultant, who had always &ldquo;loved real estate,&rdquo; was happy about becoming an agent with Coldwell Banker West Shell in Cincinnati. But sometimes life upends the best-laid plans. In this case, it happened when Obergefell was transformed into a national civil rights hero almost overnight. He was the lead plaintiff in the U.S. Supreme Court case that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015.</p> <p>Obergefell met with a large group of his real estate peers in early April for the first time since the marriage equality decision overtook his real estate work &mdash; and his life. He was the opening speaker at a half-day continuing education class on fair housing and LGBT issues presented by the Cincinnati Area Board of REALTORS&reg;. His primary role was to offer an understanding of the emotional meaning of the landmark decision by relaying his personal journey to more than 150 attendees.</p> <p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;ve come to see that when you tell your story, that&rsquo;s how you change hearts and minds,&rdquo; Obergefell said.</p> <p>Obergefell says he didn&rsquo;t want to marry his partner of 20 years, John Arthur, &ldquo;just to be symbolic. I wanted it to carry legal weight.&rdquo;&nbsp; But their life together was turned upside down when Arthur was diagnosed with ALS in 2011. When the Supreme Court struck down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act in June 2013, which had denied federal benefits to married gay couples, the two decided it was time to wed.&nbsp; Because marriage was not an option in their home state of Ohio and Arthur&rsquo;s health was deteriorating rapidly, they traveled to Baltimore Washington International &nbsp;Airport by medical jet a few weeks later and got hitched on the tarmac.</p> <p>Friends and other supporters who emerged via social media contributed the full $13,000 necessary to hire the plane. &ldquo;This was the happiest moment of our lives,&rdquo; Obergefell said.&nbsp;</p> <p>The couple subsequently sued the state of Ohio in federal court seeking recognition of their marriage on Arthur&rsquo;s impending death certificate. Arthur didn&rsquo;t live long enough to see a resolution to the case; he passed away three months after they married.</p> <p>Indeed, Obergefell himself never anticipated that their lawsuit would eventually reach the Supreme Court after a series of lower court rulings and appeals. After their case was consolidated with those of 28 other marriage equality plaintiffs from four states, the Court ruled 5-4 on June 26, 2015, that the fundamental right to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples under the due process and equal protection clauses in the Constitution.</p> <p>Speaking to REALTOR&reg; Magazine before his remarks to the group, Obergefell explained that he obtained his real estate license in late 2014 after travelling for much of the year after Arthur&rsquo;s death. &ldquo;I needed to clear my head,&rdquo; he said.</p> <p>He and Arthur had also previously worked together at four different companies doing client relations and project management as well as IT consulting.</p> <p>&ldquo;I was always interested in home buying,&rdquo; he said, noting that he and Arthur bought and sold four homes in Cincinnati during their 20-year relationship. They enjoyed rehabbing, and Obergefell still owns the beach home they bought on North Carolina&rsquo;s Outer Banks.</p> <p>During his first three months as an agent, Obergefell represented clients in two sales transactions. That was before the media spotlight, speaking engagements, and award ceremonies over took his life. He also served on the Cincinnati board&rsquo;s Diversity and Housing Initiatives Committee.</p> <p>Obergefell&rsquo;s colleague at Coldwell Banker, Julia Wesselkamper, who attended the fair housing class, described Oberfgefell as &ldquo;a hero in our community. It was so moving to hear him share his story with other REALTORS&reg;.&rdquo;</p> <p>His book about the case, <em>Love Wins</em>, is due out in June and 20th Century Fox has secured the rights to make a feature film about Obergefell and his experience. &ldquo;While my life is completely different now, I&rsquo;m keeping my license active. You never know when this all may change again,&rdquo; he added.</p> <p>Obergefell said that while his current activities are gratifying, his heart reminds him daily of what he&rsquo;s still missing: &ldquo;I&rsquo;d give this all up to have John here with me.&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>Jim Obergefell launched a career in real estate just before a landmark Supreme Court decision rerouted his plans.</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/apr16_NC_Obergefell.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=27413">apr16_NC_Obergefell.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/apr16_NC_Obergefell_0.jpg?1460478824" /> </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/apr16_LP_NC_equality.jpg?1460478845" /> </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/feature/article/2013/07/same-sex-marriage-ruling-what-it-means-for-real-estate">Same-Sex Marriage Ruling: What it Means for Real Estate</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2013/07/03/gay-marriage-impact-real-estate">Gay Marriage: Impact on Real Estate</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 Tue, 12 Apr 2016 15:41:51 +0000 mwhite 20910 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Under the Sells-Scope: Spacio http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/under-sells-scope-spacio <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"> Looking for a better way to track and follow up on open-house leads? This iOS and web-based app may help. </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, April 8, 2016</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/lee-davenport">Lee Davenport</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>You&rsquo;re probably aware that some of your brokerage&rsquo;s listings need foot traffic, and some of your agents need to learn how to show properties. So you do the natural thing and pair newbies with seasoned agents to host open houses.</p> <p>But how well are you able to track the ins and outs of those open houses? Sales agents sometimes forget to follow up with visitors, or they may misplace the open house sign-in sheet (or it&rsquo;s &ldquo;accidentally&rdquo; used as a drawing sheet for a rambunctious child at the open house).</p> <p>This is where an app like <a href="http://spac.io/" target="_blank">Spacio</a> can help. As a newcomer to the real estate app world, I took Spacio under the &ldquo;sells-scope&rdquo; to learn its benefits and drawbacks. This is my unbiased, unpaid impression.</p> <p>Spacio deals a powerful blow to some of the problems related to open houses. I see it as akin to <a href="http://openhomepro.com/" target="_blank">Open Home Pro</a> for managing brokers and team leaders. Spacio makes real-time tracking of an entire team or brokerage&rsquo;s open house foot traffic and leads accessible to its managers.</p> <p>Can Spacio help your office, team, or agents work smarter to nurture open house leads, or will they end up working harder? See the breakdown below, and you be the judge:</p> <h4><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/Spacio.png" style="width: 325px; height: 488px; float: right;" />For Realty Firm Managers</h4> <p><strong>Features That Help You Work Smarter</strong></p> <ul> <li>A visitor sign-in screen you can brand.</li> <li>Unlimited agent reporting per office.</li> <li>Real-time reporting, which includes:</li> <li>Revealing which listings get the most foot traffic.</li> <li>Total number of open houses held per agent, team, office, and so on.</li> <li>Which agents did and did not host open houses.</li> <li>How many agent hours were spent at open houses.</li> <li>The number of leads and lead quality (how many left contact info, who was unrepresented, who was prequalified).</li> <li>Sorting options displaying the number of listings, agents, and locations of your firm.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Features That May Cause You to Work Harder</strong></p> <ul> <li>Reports do not maintain firm branding. (I don&rsquo;t want to &quot;jimmy&quot; my logo onto the report.)</li> <li>Reports don&rsquo;t track e-mails sent, opened, responses, and unsubscribe rates, so you have to rely on outside e-mail marketing tools.</li> </ul> <h4><br /> For Sales Agents</h4> <p><strong>Features That Help You Work Smarter</strong></p> <ul> <li>The iPad app works offline if the Internet connection is spotty at the open house.</li> <li>Automated, customizable follow-up e-mails can be sent with the listing details.</li> <li>Up to six custom or stock questions (such as &ldquo;Are you working with an agent?&rdquo;) can be added to help you flesh out your leads.</li> <li>Preregister visitors with a custom link to your marketing materials.</li> <li>Send e-mails to registrants before, during, and after the open house.</li> <li>Autopopulate MLS data, reducing or eliminating data entry, in locations where the MLS permits this.</li> <li>Download sign-in data to a CSV file, which may easily be uploaded to your CRM.</li> <li>Autosync lead information to BoomTown, Contactually, Market Snapshot, or Top Producer.</li> <li>Use an intuitive reporting dashboard that lets you see which visitors are leads (without agents), where they are in the financing phase, and which listings generated the most traffic on particular days.</li> <li>Develop PDF reports for keeping sellers in the loop.</li> <li>Showcase your testimonials on the visitor sign-in screen to help convert unrepresented open-house visitors into clients.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Features That May Cause You to Work Harder</strong></p> <ul> <li>No e-mail validation. The system won&rsquo;t reject fake addresses such as <a href="mailto:MickeyMouse@Nowhere.com">MickeyMouse@Nowhere.com</a>. (I&rsquo;d love to see the same validation feature that MailChimp and others use.)</li> <li>Your MLS may not have a relationship yet with Spacio; if not, you will need to enter data.</li> <li>It does not yet sync with Zapier or other automation apps so that contact details can be imported automatically to other contact managers.</li> <li>You may use a different CRM, so you will need to configure and manually upload the CSV file after each open house.</li> <li>There&rsquo;s no Android app yet.</li> <li>The seller PDF reports do not include the company branding, and they&rsquo;re not automatically sent to sellers.</li> </ul> <h4>For Open House Visitors</h4> <p><strong>Features That Help You Work Smarter</strong></p> <ul> <li>Visually impressive, clean design with real estate company branding.</li> <li>Private e-mail sign-up option where visitors may be assigned a Spacio e-mail for privacy; this may relax the fear of giving a perceived &ldquo;sales predator&rdquo; their direct e-mail address while maintaining a way of communication.</li> <li>Simplified Chinese translations available for each field on the sign-in screen.</li> <li>They can read your agents&rsquo; testimonials to help them feel safer in giving their contact information.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Features That May Cause You to Work Harder</strong></p> <ul> <li>No additional language support. (I would love to see Spanish and other common languages.)</li> </ul> <p>As you can see, Spacio may just be that helpful open-house tool that teams and firms have been looking for. And since Spacio is still in its first year of development, I anticipate that some of the &ldquo;work harder&rdquo; points (which I noted in my February 2016 trail of the app) will eventually be addressed.</p> <p>Have questions? Ask away by following me on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/YourRealEstateInformant" target="_blank">Facebook</a>, <a href="https://www.instagram.com/learnwithlee.realtor/" target="_blank">Instagram</a>, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/user/leedavenport8?sub_confirmation=1" target="_blank">YouTube</a>, and <a href="https://plus.google.com/+LeeDavenport/posts" target="_blank">Google+</a> or visiting <a href="http://www.agentsaroundatlanta.com/" target="_blank">LearnWithLee.Realtor</a>. And be sure to get a copy of the 5-star rated workbook <a href="http://www.amazon.com/dp/1508652325/ref=cm_sw_su_dp" target="_blank">Plan to Win</a> to transform your real estate sales game plan. Here&#39;s to your success.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Looking for a better way to track and follow up on open-house leads? This iOS and web-based app may help.</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/apr16_BB_openhouse_software.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=41388">apr16_BB_openhouse_software.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/apr16_BB_openhouse_software_0.jpg?1460758215" /> </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/apr16_LP_BB_openhouse_software.jpg?1460758240" /> </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/network/article/2016/03/under-sells-scope-floorplan-revolution">Under the Sells-Scope: Floorplan Revolution</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/03/7-ways-help-new-agents-succeed">7 Ways to Help New Agents Succeed</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2016/03/overcoming-open-house-objections">Overcoming Open House Objections</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/01/manage-properties-not-data">Manage Properties, Not Data</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> Network Fri, 08 Apr 2016 20:15:53 +0000 echristoffer 20898 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Understand Your Agents’ Toughest Challenges http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/understand-your-agents-toughest-challenges <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"> Real estate coach Tom Ferry surveyed agents to find out what’s holding them back and how brokers can help. Here’s what he found. </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, April 7, 2016</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>Don&rsquo;t let your agents fall through the cracks. Instead, you can retain more salespeople by learning their pain points &mdash; and offering help.</p> <p>Tom Ferry, motivational speaker and star of a real estate web series called the &ldquo;<a href="https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3ZAfS1Z3J_Itfy7Rp745cg" target="_blank">#TomFerryShow</a>,&rdquo; surveyed 3,330 agents about their major career challenges. Out of the 56 questions participants answered, these five challenges emerged most often:</p> <p>1. Prospecting consistently<br /> 2. Managing time<br /> 3. Maintaining a database<br /> 4. Maintaining mindset and personal psychology<br /> 5. Staying organized</p> <p>Both new and seasoned agents face obstacles in their real estate careers, and usually all they need is a little guidance, Ferry says. But unfortunately, nearly 20 percent of respondents said they don&rsquo;t feel supported by their brokerages. Most agents said they want brokerages to improve in three areas:</p> <p>1.&nbsp; Keeping current and up-to-date on industry practices<br /> 2.&nbsp; Transaction management<br /> 3.&nbsp; Marketing support</p> <p>At the same time, the survey also found that broker-owners and managers struggle most with agent recruitment and profitability. The solution likely lies in coaching. According to survey results, agents who said they work with coaches also perform better in several job-related areas. &ldquo;For instance, coached agents have business and marketing plans in place. They track their daily activities. They also have more numerous and effective lead sources than agents who are not coached,&rdquo; Ferry says.</p> <p>Here are thee tips to help brokers to get their agents on track:</p> <p><strong>1. Train them on how to use a CRM system.</strong> Nearly 25 percent of agents surveyed said they don&rsquo;t use a customer relationship management system to organize leads and contacts. Put a system in place and train agents on how to effective use the CRM to follow up on leads consistently, Ferry says.</p> <p><strong>2. Make sure your agents are using the best lead generation tools.</strong> Ferry found that 70 percent of the agents surveyed are using Facebook for lead generation. But agents who earn $300,000 or more per year prefer more specialized lead sources like BoomTown ROI or Google PPC, according to the survey. It might be time to help your agents step up their game.</p> <p><strong>3. Formally collect client feedback if you aren&rsquo;t already.</strong> Nearly 60 percent of the brokers surveyed said their company doesn&rsquo;t have a process in place for gathering consumers&rsquo; thoughts on their buying or selling experience, Ferry says. &ldquo;When firms do survey the consumer experience, the most common area of improvement is better agent communication with the client and associated parties,&rdquo; he says. Once brokers have that consumer data, they can share it with their salespeople and use it in coaching.</p> <p>Hungry for more? In this recent episode of his show, Ferry dives into the issue of prospecting consistently, and offers additional ideas and tips.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/SycmkprVd5w" width="560"></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Real estate coach Tom Ferry surveyed agents to find out what&rsquo;s holding them back and how brokers can help. Here&rsquo;s what he found.</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/apr16_BB_challenges_1.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=30328">apr16_BB_challenges.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/apr16_BB_challenges_2.jpg?1460672259" /> </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/apr16_LP_BB_challenges.jpg?1460672006" /> </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/network/article/2015/12/what-coaches-can-do-for-business">What Coaches Can Do For Business</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/10/surprising-side-effects-workplace-wellness">Surprising Side Effects of Workplace Wellness</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/product-guide/applications/article/2015/08/2015-crm-solutions-whats-available">2015 CRM Solutions: What&#039;s Available</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/product-guide/cameras-and-video/article/2016/02/leverage-your-own-video-in-your-marketing">Leverage Your Own Video in Your Marketing</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> Network Thu, 07 Apr 2016 22:34:46 +0000 echristoffer 20892 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Which Agents Are Playing for Mastery? http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/solutions/article/2016/04/which-agents-are-playing-for-mastery <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 can figure out the percentage of your agents who operate on a higher plane and challenge themselves daily, you’ll have an idea of your team’s potential success in the long term. </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, April 7, 2016</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/jason-forrest">Jason Forrest</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Forget about sales numbers. Do you know how your agents <em>think</em> and <em>believe</em>?</p> <p>Visualize a pyramid with the six distinct levels represented below. Level one represents the first part of the journey to success in real estate, and level six represents the pinnacle. This pyramid is useful as an assessment tool to see where you and your team members operate on a daily basis and whether you need to make adjustments.</p> <p>No one is locked into a level, and you can absolutely coach and lead your team to consistent improvement from one level to the next. It&rsquo;s easy to get hung up on what members of your team <em>do</em>, but focusing on what they believe and how they think provides better insight.</p> <h4>Level 1&mdash;Playing to Not Lose</h4> <p>This is the level at which bottom-of-the-barrel agents operate. These are people who may &ldquo;do real estate&rdquo; on the side to earn a few extra bucks. They aren&rsquo;t hungry; they&rsquo;re just existing and operating well enough to stay on the team. If you have very many of these folks around, take a hard look in the mirror at the standard you&rsquo;re holding up and how you&rsquo;re going about inspiring people.</p> <h4>Level 2&mdash;Playing to Cruise</h4> <p>Agents at this level are camped out within their &ldquo;safe zone.&rdquo; These are the individuals who consistently hit their minimum transaction numbers, but never blow away their top-end targets. They won&rsquo;t land on the &ldquo;naughty&rdquo; list, but also don&rsquo;t want to do so much that your expectations rise.</p> <h4>Level 3&mdash;Playing to Compete</h4> <p>On the surface, these team members seem promising because real estate professionals at this level will engage in competition and are motivated by contests and other external factors. The trouble is their presiding belief that the only way to make themselves look better is by making others look worse. When they don&rsquo;t win, they&rsquo;re quick to place blame on the competition or the quality of their listings and leads. When they hit a plateau, they look for conditions to change to get them &ldquo;unstuck.&rdquo;</p> <p>I like to say people at these first three levels are operating &ldquo;below the line.&rdquo; They&rsquo;re the folks who&mdash;when there is a market downturn or they perceive the situation to be too tough&mdash;will find a field with easier conditions to improve their success rate. They view themselves as victims of their circumstances, and, to be perfectly frank, they&rsquo;re expendable. But they don&rsquo;t have to stay that way.</p> <h4><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/pyramid.jpg" target="_blank"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/pyramid.jpg" style="width: 350px; height: 210px; margin: 3px; float: right;" title="Click here for larger image" /></a></h4> <h4>Level 4&mdash;Playing for Improvement</h4> <p>At this level, there&rsquo;s a distinct shift. Agents at and above this level have achieved intrinsic motivation (that is, they no longer need an external stimulus to improve), and they never see themselves as victims. They say, &ldquo;I&rsquo;m in control of my destiny. If I&rsquo;m going to get better at this, I need to adopt the right beliefs and skill sets.&rdquo;</p> <h4>Level 5&mdash;Playing for the Challenge</h4> <p>Agents at this level are self-aware, but also have gained the capacity to see clearly the challenges presented by their circumstances, both within the team and more broadly in the housing market. They can survey the field, understand their competition and where they fit on the team, and welcome the challenge of overcoming adversity. They want to earn recognition as the best agent on the team, in the company, or in the whole market &mdash; and not just when there&rsquo;s a sales contest running. They might say, &ldquo;I can tackle this obstacle, and here&rsquo;s how.&rdquo;</p> <h4>Level 6&mdash;Playing for Mastery</h4> <p>This level represents the pinnacle for your team members. It&rsquo;s where, in the best way possible, they don&rsquo;t give a damn about what anyone else is doing. They&rsquo;ve achieved a Zen-like state where their work just flows and they don&rsquo;t even see challenges as challenges. They focus on their craft and are immersed in their belief system to the point that they don&rsquo;t even acknowledge the impact of outside factors. These agents can succeed in any field and in any housing market.</p> <p>Now that you understand these different levels, you must encourage your agents to play for mastery. As your team moves from a collection of bottom-feeders satisfied with others&rsquo; leftovers to a crack squad of Zen warriors of home selling, their sales, confidence, and sense of pride in a job well done will go through the roof.</p> <p>&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>If you can figure out the percentage of your agents who operate on a higher plane and challenge themselves daily, you&rsquo;ll have an idea of your team&rsquo;s potential success in the long term.</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/apr16_B_pyramid.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=23132">apr16_B_pyramid.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/apr16_B_pyramid_0.jpg?1460062248" /> </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/apr16_LP_B_pyramid.jpg?1460062269" /> </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/2014/11/four-reasons-agents-dont-succeed">Four Reasons Agents Don&#039;t Succeed</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/solutions/article/2016/01/making-most-circumstantial-urgency">Making the Most of Circumstantial Urgency</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/solutions/article/2015/12/improve-your-way-top">Improve Your Way to the Top</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> Solutions Thu, 07 Apr 2016 14:21:41 +0000 mwhite 20891 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Brokers Are Heading Back to School http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/brokers-are-heading-back-school <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"> Take your businesses to the next level by using education as a way to both expand your knowledge and build credibility. </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, April 6, 2016</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/lee-nelson">Lee Nelson</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Tami McHugh considers herself a lifelong learner. When she found out she could obtain a master&rsquo;s degree in real estate from the newly accredited REALTOR&reg; University through the National Association of <em>REALTORS</em>&reg;, she knew it was right for her. She graduated with the school&rsquo;s first class in May 2014, and now hopes to continue with doctorate studies.</p> <p>&ldquo;I always valued education,&rdquo; says McHugh, owner and designated broker at Heritage Real Estate in Meridian, Idaho. &ldquo;Having the knowledge is great. The long-term friendships I&rsquo;ve made and the expansion of my peer group across the country has been tremendous. But the credibility is priceless.&rdquo;</p> <p>Real estate agents and brokers across the country are finding that continuing their education&mdash;whether with a master&rsquo;s degree from REALTOR&reg; University like McHugh decided upon or through <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications" target="_blank">NAR designations or certifications</a>&mdash;not only broadens their skill sets but also helps them grow as business owners, communicators, and negotiators. It even expands their personal horizons.</p> <p>Learn more about how the educational opportunities available through NAR or your local <em>REALTORS</em>&reg; association can help advance your career.</p> <h4>See You at the U</h4> <p><a href="http://www.realtoru.com/" target="_blank">REALTOR<strong>&reg; </strong>University</a> is the only advanced online education institution focused exclusively on <em>real estate</em>. You can earn your master of <em>real estate</em> degree in as little as two years. But you do have to complete the 36-credit degree within five years.</p> <p>&ldquo;We are exclusively online because REALTORS&reg; are so dispersed throughout the country,&rdquo; says David Overbye, dean of academic affairs.</p> <p>The school, which began academic operations in March 2012, offers five concentrations of study: <a href="http://www.realtoru.com/academics/concentrations/residential-real-estate-sales-marketing-management/" target="_blank" title="Residential Real Estate Sales, Marketing and Management">Residential Real Estate Sales, Marketing, and Management</a>, <a href="http://www.realtoru.com/academics/concentrations/real-estate-asset-property-management/" target="_blank" title="Real Estate Asset and Property Management">Real Estate Asset and Property Management</a>, <a href="http://www.realtoru.com/academics/concentrations/commercial-real-estate-investment-analysis/" target="_blank" title="Commercial Real Estate Investment and Analysis">Commercial Real Estate Investment and Analysis</a>, <a href="http://www.realtoru.com/academics/concentrations/real-estate-appraisal-valuation-services/" target="_blank" title="Real Estate Appraisal and Valuation Services">Real Estate Appraisal and Valuation Services</a>, and <a href="http://www.realtoru.com/academics/concentrations/real-estate-association-management/" target="_blank" title="Real Estate Association Management">Real Estate Association Management</a>.</p> <p>The university just received accreditation from the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, and Overbye anticipates that will bring in more students.</p> <p>Students don&rsquo;t have to be members of NAR to get a degree. Currently, the average student at REALTOR&reg; University is in their mid-40s and mid-career working adults &ndash; and most are brokers, Overbye says. McHugh, for example, started her classes when she was 50.</p> <p>&ldquo;I have been a CPA since 1984, and I got my real estate license in 1986. I always thought I would get a master&rsquo;s degree someday, but I couldn&rsquo;t find a program that appealed to me,&rdquo; she explains. &ldquo;When I read about the masters in real estate in REALTOR&reg; Magazine, I was fascinated.&rdquo;</p> <p>In the two years since she graduated, McHugh says the degree has increased her business and built up her credibility exponentially with more clients and increased revenues.</p> <p>McHugh says her colleagues and peers often defer to her when a complicated issue is raised since she now has an advanced degree. &ldquo;And when my clients see it on my business card (that she has a master&rsquo;s degree), that means something,&rdquo; she says.</p> <h4>Designate Your Expertise</h4> <p>The National Association of REALTORS&reg; and its affiliates offer <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications" target="_blank">17 different designations</a>. Through online and in-person courses, you can become everything from a <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/alc" target="_blank">land sales</a> or <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/cpm" target="_blank">property management</a> expert to a specialist in <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/abr" target="_blank">buyer representation</a> or <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/cips" target="_blank">international real estate</a>.</p> <p>The <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/pmn" target="_blank">Performance Management Network</a> designation focuses on negotiating strategies and tactics, networking and referrals, and leadership development.</p> <p>Alissa Rogowski, coordinator of the <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/sres" target="_blank">Seniors Real Estate Specialist</a> designation, which was introduced in March 2007, says 15,000 members in the United States and Canada currently have the designation.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s become a go-to educational resource to be better skilled in the 50-plus age market in real estate,&rdquo; she says. The course, which can be taken in a two-day classroom setting or online at your own pace, covers many topics, including age-restricted communities, aging in place, and assisted living facilities.</p> <p>&ldquo;You learn the ins and outs of reserve mortgages, how to use pensions for real estate, how to protect clients from loan schemes, and how to communicate with the older generations,&rdquo; Rogowski says. &ldquo;A lot of our members say they get more business from this designation. They get referrals, too.&rdquo;</p> <h4>Certifiably Expert</h4> <p>Another way to improve yourself and your business is through a variety of <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications" target="_blank">certifications</a> offered at the national, state, and local level. Certifications generally don&rsquo;t require as much classroom time and don&rsquo;t have specific experience or production requirements like some designations do.</p> <p>Jeff Fagan, regional vice president at Watson Realty Corp. and director of the Orlando Regional REALTORS&reg; Association (ORRA), was instrumental in creating the <a href="http://www.orlandorealtors.org/news/211000/New-from-ORRA-Excellence-in-Professionalism---Gold-Key-Certification.htm" target="_blank">Gold Key Certification</a> for his association. The program was first offered in 2015 after seeing that more than half of complaints filed nationwide with real estate licensing authorities were about issues that aren&rsquo;t governed by the REALTORS&reg; Code of Ethics.</p> <p>&ldquo;When I moved to Orlando from Jacksonville, Fla., I was getting frustrated with the associates that worked for me,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;Some very common elementary givens weren&rsquo;t happening, like people weren&rsquo;t returning phone calls. It was basic customer service issues.&rdquo;</p> <p>So, he helped the association write a survey given to Orlando real estate agents on professionalism. Eighty percent of members who responded said they consider themselves to be very professional. But 80 percent also said that everybody else lacks professionalism and needs improvement.</p> <p>&ldquo;Consumers, in general, are frustrated with the lack of customer service. As an industry, if we don&rsquo;t address that void and increase professionalism, we are in danger of being obsolete,&rdquo; Fagan says.</p> <p>The Gold Key Certification teaches ways to be more respectful, dress properly, and respond to clients and leads in a timely manner. ORRA believes in this program so much that it is offering it free to members this year. There are 11,000 members in the Orlando association, and every one of the classes offered last year was full. There are 12 classes scheduled this year, and Fagan says they are already filled up.</p> <p>&ldquo;The members acknowledge a desire to improve and a need to improve, and I&rsquo;m very gratified that they see the power of trying to be better,&rdquo; Fagan says.</p> <p>At the national level, NAR offers certifications such as <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/e-pro" target="_blank">e-PRO</a>, which teaches how to use up to-date, cutting-edge technologies to win the hearts and minds of savvy clients. The Real Estate Negotiation Expert certification is for those who want the best tips and tools to advocate for their clients.</p> <p>The NAR certification <a href="http://www.realtor.org/designations-and-certifications/ahwd" target="_blank">At Home with Diversity</a> (AHWD) has been around since 1998, and more than 20,000 real estate agents have taken the course to learn how to deal effectively with an increasingly diverse group of home buyers and sellers.</p> <p>&ldquo;What&rsquo;s really cool about this course is that it has a practical application in virtually every situation of our lives,&rdquo; says Ron Phipps, NAR past president and broker-owner of Phipps Realty in East Greenwich, R.I. He teaches AHWD certification classes because he believes deeply in the message behind the education.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s spiritual regardless of one&rsquo;s religion. It teaches fundamental elements of appropriate human engagements &mdash; and that&rsquo;s respect,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s troubling that we need to teach it. But we need to prepare our own members to be contributing to a safer and more welcoming environment for everyone.&rdquo;</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Take your businesses to the next level by using education as a way to both expand your knowledge and build credibility.</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/apr16_BB_ed.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=39565">apr16_BB_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/apr16_BB_ed_0.jpg?1460043985" /> </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/apr16_LP_BB_ed.jpg?1460044010" /> </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/2016/03/09/realtor-university-earns-accreditation">REALTOR® University Earns Accreditation</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/standouts/article/2011/03/keeping-standards-high">Keeping Standards High</a> </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://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/2014/06/04/realtor-university-graduates-setting-new-standard/" rel="nofollow">REALTOR® University Graduates: Setting a New Standard</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> Network Wed, 06 Apr 2016 20:57:54 +0000 echristoffer 20882 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Real Estate Teacher Wins With Students’ Help http://realtormag.realtor.org/30-under-30/article/2016/04/real-estate-teacher-wins-students-help <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 2016 30 Under 30 Web Choice Award winner credits his students and hometown connections for their support. </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, April 5, 2016</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/grant-boelter">Grant Boelter</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p><a href="/30-under-30/finalist/2016/03/kyle-kovats" target="_blank">Kyle Kovats</a> says it was his teacher&rsquo;s pets who helped him become REALTOR&reg; Magazine&rsquo;s 30 Under 30 Web Choice winner.</p> <p>Kovats is an instructor at his family-owned prelicensure school, <a href="http://www.kovatsschool.com/" target="_blank">Kovats Real Estate School</a>, in addition to his work as an agent. He says his students showed up for him in a big way, helping him gather 2,473 votes over one week to win the online voting contest held last month. And he didn&rsquo;t even have to offer extra credit.</p> <p>&ldquo;I was kind of taken aback by it and thought it was incredible,&rdquo; says Kovats upon learning he won the <a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/30-under-30/finalist/2016/03/2016-30-under-30-finalists" target="_blank">online voting contest</a> that allowed the public to pick its favorite candidate for REALTOR&reg; Magazine&rsquo;s 30 Under 30 class of 2016.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong><a href="/daily-news/2016/03/28/announcing-30-under-30-class-2016" target="_blank">Announcing the 30 Under 30 Class of 2016</a></strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Kovats, a salesperson with Keller Williams Suburban Realty in Livingston, N.J., says he enjoys teaching in part because he&rsquo;s simultaneously learning from students as he helps them prepare for their licensure tests. Their help in the voting process was just another benefit of the relationships he&rsquo;s established at his school.</p> <p><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/IMG_0892.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/IMG_0892.jpg" style="width: 350px; height: 623px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>When marketing himself as an agent, Kovats favors more old-school methods of cold-calling and door-knocking. But in the effort to spread the word about this campaign, he also turned to Facebook, LinkedIn, and Snapchat for help. Knowing he had a broad network of supporters, Kovats says repeating his message and providing concise instructions for his followers helped drive support.</p> <p>&ldquo;Since you can&rsquo;t see the voting totals, you don&rsquo;t know how many votes you need,&rdquo; says Kovats. &ldquo;It was kind of like when I&rsquo;m marketing homes in that I was constantly reaching out to people.&rdquo;</p> <p>Kovats created an incentive for those who shared his finalist profile in a Facebook post, encouraging their friends to vote in the contest. He awarded one lucky winner $100 after he drew their name in a raffle among all who shared his post.</p> <p>Kovats also credits his competitive spirit with helping him win the contest: &ldquo;I&rsquo;m a very sore loser. If I was playing basketball and you told me I could win 20 games and lose one, I&rsquo;d be so much more mad about losing the one game than happy about winning 20.&rdquo;</p> <p>His passion for sports also came in handy in a somewhat unexpected way. He contributes to a blog focused on Rutgers football (his alma mater), and he was flattered to see support roll in from readers when he posted a link to the contest.</p> <p>&ldquo;I got a ton of support from all the people in New Jersey,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;We kind of stick together and go to bat for each other.&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>The 2016 30 Under 30 Web Choice Award winner credits his students and hometown connections for their support.</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/apr16_webchoice.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=35470">apr16_webchoice.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/apr16_webchoice_0.jpg?1459888161" /> </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/apr16_LP_webchoice.jpg?1459888189" /> </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/2016/03/28/announcing-30-under-30-class-2016">Announcing the 30 Under 30 Class of 2016</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/30-under-30/about">About 30 Under 30</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/30-under-30/article/2015/04/humor-hard-work-winning-combination">Humor, Hard Work a Winning Combination</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/30-under-30/article/2014/04/all-s-fair-in-politics-and-online-voting">All’s Fair in Politics and Online Voting</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> 30 Under 30 Tue, 05 Apr 2016 19:15:18 +0000 echristoffer 20875 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Real Estate With Purpose http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/real-estate-purpose <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"> Take a page from ERA Real Estate&#039;s playbook and create lasting philanthropic partnerships that bring teams together to focus on a common goal. </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, April 4, 2016</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>There are few professionals more intimately connected to communities than brokers and agents. So it&rsquo;s only natural that real estate practitioners often become highly involved in charitable causes. Creating connections and getting involved with local organizations uplifts everyone involved. But how can business owners create lasting partnerships that are sustainable and have long-term impact?</p> <p>ERA Real Estate is no stranger to community involvement. The company has a 35-year-old partnership with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, giving back to families in need. &ldquo;We&rsquo;ve raised nearly $35 million and donated countless hours to the cause through telethons, time spent at MDA summer camps, carnivals, and more,&rdquo; says ERA President and CEO Charlie Young.</p> <p><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/charlie-young-and-reagan-imhoff-2015MDANational-GoodwillAmbassador-AT-ERARiberRun.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 300px; margin: 3px; float: right;" />Young answered this Q&amp;A for REALTOR&reg; Magazine&rsquo;s Broker to Broker, providing insights on how a significant philanthropic partnership works and how to get affiliated brokers and agents involved at the local level.</p> <p><strong>Last year, your company launched the ERA MDA Summer Camp Challenge. Tell us about that initiative and what came of it.&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>In 2014, we introduced a revitalized brand for the ERA organization. We felt that was the perfect time to reinvigorate our support for the MDA as well. Knowing how strongly our brokers and agents respond to a challenge, we set a goal to sponsor 1,000 kids who have muscular diseases within three years so they can enjoy MDA summer camps.</p> <p>We are not just sending kids to camp. We are giving them the opportunity to enjoy new experiences, make new friends, discover their strengths and passions, and build the confidence to achieve their goals. MDA Summer Camps offer the amenities and activities of a traditional summer camp, but are designed to meet the unique physical needs of these children.</p> <p>At our 2015 ERA International Business Conference, I issued the challenge to our network, encouraging all offices to make a pledge of the number of children they wanted to send to camp, rather than pledging a certain amount of money. Because real estate is inherently local, we took a grassroots, community approach to fundraising &mdash; and team ERA truly rallied for the cause.</p> <p>Within six months, we reached more than one-third of our pledge goal, and at this year&rsquo;s conference, we revealed that we&rsquo;ve already met 67 percent of our goal. That&rsquo;s 673 children who can now experience MDA Summer Camp.</p> <p><strong>How is&nbsp;ERA Real Estate continuing its commitment to the MDA this year and what are your goals?&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Given the resounding support we&rsquo;ve seen thus far, I reissued the challenge to our brokerages and asked them to help us reach 100 percent of our goal in two years rather than three. I believe we can make it happen.</p> <p>To kick off the new year of fundraising, we hosted a &ldquo;Riber Run and Dance Party&rdquo; this week at IBC 2016, where we raised more than $23,000 for the MDA, in honor of the late Jeff Riber Sr. Jeff was a longstanding, well-respected member of the ERA organization and an avid runner who loved to dance and provided endless community support. We will continue to host fundraisers throughout the country, and our brokerages already have several creative ideas planned.</p> <p><strong>How are brokers and their agents getting involved in this effort? </strong></p> <p>ERA brokers and agents are incredible examples of dedication to giving back to the community. They have formed relationships with local MDA Goodwill Ambassadors, and that has made their efforts even more personal. For example, Robyn Erlenbush, broker-owner of <a href="http://www.eralandmark.com/" target="_blank">ERA Landmark Real Estate</a> in southwest Montana, sent 17 kids to camp by hosting the fifth annual Agents of Hope Carnival. Attendees played carnival games, enjoyed live music, and won prizes. <a href="http://www.erashields.com/" target="_blank">ERA Shields Real Estate&rsquo;s</a> Bill Hurt has led his Colorado Springs team through dozens of MDA-focused fundraising campaigns, most notably the annual MDA Banquet and Art Show, which enabled them to send 40 kids to camp. With the guidance of brokers Doug and John Van Nortwick, <a href="http://www.sellersbuyersnm.com/" target="_blank">ERA Sellers &amp; Buyers Real Estate&rsquo;s</a> El Paso, Texas, office hosted an old-fashioned cookout and a golf tournament to raise funds. The company&rsquo;s Albuquerque office held a raffle. Together, they succeeded in sending 51 kids to camp.</p> <p><strong>How does a real estate company go about choosing a nonprofit to support, and what are the benefits of such a partnership?</strong></p> <p>Having a corporate social responsibility program brings a team together to work toward a collective goal, forms bonds, and challenges brokerages to think creatively about fundraising and community relations.</p> <p>Because real estate is dependent upon connections with communities, it is essential for a real estate company to choose a nonprofit that has local ties. That can be a national organization with local chapters, like the MDA, or a more regional organization, depending upon the size of the company.</p> <p>While the real estate industry continues to evolve and ERA focuses on innovating to keep ahead of the changes, the core of what we as an industry represent doesn&rsquo;t change. We help others in need, from finding the right neighborhood to buying and selling a home. Raising contributions for and awareness of charitable causes goes hand-in-hand with that mission. I recommend finding a nonprofit whose overall cause resonates with your team &ndash; whether that is health, education, poverty &mdash; because belief in the cause is the first step to creating true and lasting devotion to it.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Take a page from ERA Real Estate&#39;s playbook and create lasting philanthropic partnerships that bring teams together to focus on a common goal.</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/apr16_BB_era_ms.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=89875">apr16_BB_era_ms.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/apr16_BB_era_ms_0.jpg?1459882063" /> </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/apr16_LP_BB_era_ms.jpg?1459882089" /> </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/2016/03/video-what-good-neighbor">Video: What is a Good Neighbor?</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/03/cultivate-clients-in-your-community">Cultivate Clients in Your Community</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/standouts/article/2014/01/pillar-community-strength">Pillar of Community Strength</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/10/brokers-duke-it-out-for-charity">Brokers Duke It Out for Charity</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> Network Mon, 04 Apr 2016 22:23:10 +0000 echristoffer 20868 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Will Prospects Keep Your Business Card? http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2016/04/will-prospects-keep-your-business-card <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"> Not if it looks the same as the rest they&#039;re handed every day. Take these suggestions for making yours pop with a bit of your own personal style. </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, April 5, 2016</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>Most business cards end up in a landfill somewhere. They&rsquo;re plain and generic, lack visual details that capture the recipient&rsquo;s eye, and are thrown away as quickly as they&rsquo;re received. What can you do to make a bold statement on your business card and get prospects to hold onto it longer?</p> <p>To elevate your brand, you have to be adventurous with the look and even the feel of the materials you give customers. To that end, some real estate professionals are giving their business cards an extreme makeover, incorporating more dynamic photos, catchier slogans, and a variety of shapes and sizes of card stock. Some brokerages and franchises have guidelines in place to give all their cards a uniform look, but if you have some leeway to step outside the box, draw some inspiration from what your peers have done. <strong><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_BradyMartin_card.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_BradyMartin_card.jpg" style="width: 125px; height: 229px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a></strong>Take a look at how a few practitioners have reimagined their business cards, and see what could work for you.</p> <p><strong>The picture. </strong>A professional head shot is common on business cards, but it doesn&rsquo;t do much to show your personality. Brady Martin of Keller Williams Lanier Partners in Braselton, Ga., decided to use a caricature of himself, which he had an artist sketch, leaning against a Sold sign with all of his contact information. &ldquo;I&rsquo;m a big joker, and I wanted my card to showcase that,&rdquo; Martin says. &ldquo;Plus, it&rsquo;s also less likely to get thrown away. The response has been great, and others have said it was a very creative way to make sure people remember me.&rdquo;</p> <p><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_turney.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_turney.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 122px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>Your photo could also illustrate your real estate niche, as some practitioners use pictures with their pets to make a connection with fellow pet lovers. Kyle Drenon, director of marketing at <a href="http://www.murney.com" target="_blank">Murney Associates</a> in Springfield, Mo., says agents should also consider a background in their photo that reflects the type of areas they work in or the properties they sell. When designing cards for agents at his brokerage, he often makes their photos large so they don&rsquo;t look like the typical glamor shot. The point is to make them look more approachable and trustworthy, Drenon says.</p> <p><strong><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_SutahRobins.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_SutahRobins.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 152px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>The shape. </strong>You don&rsquo;t have to stick with the standard rectangular shape of most business cards. Sutah Ann Robins of O&rsquo;Brien Realty in Monmouth Beach, N.J., uses a house-shaped business card, which not only catches the eye but also immediately identifies what type of business she&rsquo;s in. It&rsquo;s also easier to find in a stack of business cards. Vendors also offer <a href="http://www.plasticprinters.com/custom-die-cut-cards" target="_blank">key-shaped or letter-shaped business cards</a>; <a href="http://www.popfotocard.com/Products/Popfotocard/Popfotocard/Popup_Business_Cards/Popup_Business_Cards/Business_Card_Gallery.html" target="_blank">pop-up 3-D business cards</a>; or even <a href="https://www.moo.com/us/products/square-business-cards.html" target="_blank">square-shaped business cards</a> that may be different enough to make prospects do a double-take.</p> <p><strong><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_MorningPrint.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_MorningPrint.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 117px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>The feel. </strong>The paper stock you use for your business cards matters. Flimsy material can give a less professional feel. Some businesses are ditching the paper stock entirely and going for plastic or translucent cards. They feel more like a credit card &mdash; something you&rsquo;d instinctively put in your wallet. Check out some options through vendors like <a href="http://www.morningprint.com/product/card.php?acode=75" target="_blank">Morning Print</a> (pictured) or <a href="http://www.plasmadesign.co.uk/plastic-business-cards/" target="_blank">Plasma Design</a>. You can also snag a <a href="http://www.jukeboxprint.com/wooden_business_cards.php" target="_blank">wooden business card</a>.</p> <p><strong><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Storyapp_me.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Storyapp_me.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 121px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>The digital imprint. </strong>Ever thought about going paperless with your business cards? Greg McDaniel, educational director for J. Rockcliff, REALTORS&reg;, in Danville, Calif., uses <a href="http://storyapp.me/home/index.php">Storyapp.me</a> to generate a digital business card he can send to prospects via text or e-mail. The card includes links to upload his info as a new contact in a phone and view his personal Storyapp page, which has his contact information (including tap-to-call, e-mail, or text messaging buttons) as well as his bio and links to his social media feeds. Also, keep in mind that when you ask to send your digital card to a prospect&rsquo;s phone, you&rsquo;re capturing their cell phone number.</p> <p><strong><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Noberto_frontcard.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Noberto_frontcard.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 103px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Noberto_backcard.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Noberto_backcard.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 101px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>The informative card. </strong>Beyond putting your name on your business card, you can add valuable information, too. Norberto Villanueva of Fathom Realty in Colorado Springs, Colo., uses his business card to provide information about <a href="https://www.hometownheroes.com/">Hometown Heroes</a>, an organization that helps service communities such as military personnel and teachers save on the purchase or sale of a home. <strong><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Noberto_opencard.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_Noberto_opencard.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 190px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a></strong>The front of Villanueva&rsquo;s card displays his contact information, but then it opens up to reveal the program&rsquo;s buyer, seller, and refinance benefits along with qualification information. Other companies are using business cards that double as magnetic calendars or city maps. For example, <a href="http://www.pocketmaps.com/" target="_blank">PocketMaps</a> can put a small map of your city on the back of your card &mdash; something relocating clients will want to hold onto.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_DianeNicholas_b.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 120px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /><a href="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_DianeNicholas_f.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/2016_apr/apr16_DianeNicholas_f.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 120px; margin: 3px; float: right;" /></a>The branding. </strong>A catchy slogan or logo can elevate your card&rsquo;s design &mdash; just be sure to keep it short and sweet, and forgo any clich&eacute;s. Diane Nicholas of Murney Associates uses the slogan &ldquo;Making real estate fun!&rdquo; on one side of her business card; flip it over, and you&rsquo;ll see a picture of her laughing along with her contact information. Drenon and another graphic designer helped to come up with the concept, as they do for all the company&rsquo;s 400 agents. &ldquo;[Their business cards] offer a personality that identifies them and helps them to stand out from the crowd,&rdquo; Drenon says. &ldquo;A logo can look professional and make them look like they spent the money to have a media package created just for them and their business.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>The &ldquo;less is more&rdquo; idea. </strong>There are a lot of extras professionals have become accustomed to putting on their cards, such as social media icons and personal phrases like &ldquo;I love referrals.&rdquo; But many say they clutter the visual impact of the card. Even fax numbers, which are becoming obsolete thanks to smartphones, take up unnecessary space. Drenon says his company limits how much information agents put on their cards so colors and graphics can stand out more. &ldquo;We try to pull back the reins on how much goes on the card,&rdquo; Drenon 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>Not if it looks the same as the rest they&#39;re handed every day. Take these suggestions for making yours pop with a bit of your own personal style.</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/mar16_SM_cards.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=28735">mar16_SM_cards.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/mar16_SM_cards_0.jpg?1459870817" /> </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/mar16_LP_SM_cards.jpg?1459870839" /> </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/marketing/article/2014/01/5-ways-impress">5 Ways to Impress</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/tool-kit/personal-marketing/article/bright-ideas-for-personal-marketing">Bright Ideas for Personal Marketing</a> </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://ypnlounge.blogs.realtor.org/2015/08/25/8-reasons-to-get-your-library-card/" rel="nofollow">8 Reasons to Get Your Library Card</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, 04 Apr 2016 21:40:38 +0000 gwood 20867 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 1 Job, 3 Truths, and 4 Books for New Leaders http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/04/1-job-3-truths-and-4-books-for-new-leaders <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"> First-hand tips and tools for transitioning into a leadership role. </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, April 1, 2016</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/stefanie-hahn">Stefanie Hahn</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>A few months ago, I took a new position at my brokerage. After working on the training side for a decade, I was named vice president of operations at Coldwell Banker Hearthside, REALTORS&reg;, outside Philadelphia. This change was very welcomed and exciting, but honestly, I had no idea what to expect.</p> <p>Feeling empowered but clueless at the same time is a fun mixture of heady and humbling. I faced new challenges, such as agent recruitment and retention, company expansion, production goals, and overseeing staff, marketing, and education and technology systems, so I turned to Google and a lot of books to help guide me into this new chapter of my career. Now that I have a few months on the job under my belt, I&rsquo;d like to share three simple truths that may help others who are stepping into new leadership roles.</p> <p><strong>1. There&rsquo;s a lot to learn about a lot of things.</strong> I didn&rsquo;t want to screw this up, so I dived in, asking tons of questions, reading as much as I could, and learning as much as possible as quickly as possible. The more I researched, the more I realized the enormity of this fact. I&rsquo;ve always enjoyed learning, but now, I make it a priority. It is truly important to learn something new every day.</p> <p><strong>2. Moving on is not all-encompassing.</strong> Some agents still expect me to do things I&rsquo;ve always done for them &mdash; and I want to keep my connection with them. But I can&rsquo;t do my old job. When taking on a new position at your real estate company, try to figure out if it makes sense to keep certain aspects of your previous duties. For me, it felt right to hold on to some of the responsibilities that made me who I am. But you have to draw your own line in the sand.</p> <p><strong>3. At the end of the day, it still comes down to being likeable.</strong> I tell our new agents, &ldquo;People have to like you before they will trust you and eventually do business with you.&rdquo; The more I learn, the more it seems that the idea of &ldquo;being likeable&rdquo; applies to every business at every level. The more our agents like us and trust us as leaders, the more willing they are to work with us. Likeability done right should lead to trust and faith in your organization.<span id="cke_bm_173E" style="display: none;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>In addition to the truths I&rsquo;ve realized, there are four books that have helped ease the intimidation and stress of transitioning into my leadership role:</p> <p><strong>1.<em> The First 90 Days, Updated and Expanded: Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels</em></strong> (Harvard Business School Press, 2003) by <a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/201695.Michael_D_Watkins?from_search=true&amp;search_version=service">Michael D. Watkins</a>. Confession: I bought this book because it seemed like the kind of book you should read when you take on a new leadership role. Watkins lays out a plan for your first 90 days on a new job. Not everything applied to me, but I found parallels and applied what I could. The most relevant parts of this read for me: securing early wins, building teams, creating alliances, and accelerating everyone.</p> <p><strong>2.<em> Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action</em></strong> (Portfolio, 2011) by&nbsp;<a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3158574.Simon_Sinek">Simon Sinek</a>.&nbsp;This is a great book to dive into when you are starting a new position. Sinek argues that we can all explain what we do, but many of us cannot articulate why. Finding your &ldquo;why&rdquo; will open your mind to possibilities that you did not consider before. You can also check out his <a href="https://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_inspire_action?language=en">TED Talk</a> about how great leaders make us feel safe &mdash; and when people feel safe, they trust and cooperate better within organizations.</p> <p><strong>3.<em> Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges</em></strong> (Little, Brown and Co., 2015) by&nbsp;<a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1124434.Olivia_Fox_Cabane">Amy</a> Cuddy. This book helped me so much that I bought it for our entire marketing team. Cuddy is famous for her <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ks-_Mh1QhMc">TED Talk</a> on how body language shapes who we are and, of course, for her &ldquo;Supergirl&rdquo; power posing. The book was a fascinating mix of research on presence and power, exposing the science behind our thoughts and body language in the big moments. Her chapter on personal power &mdash; the kind of power you feel when you are totally in control and ready to take on the world &mdash; was instructive and eye-opening. And, yes, now I &ldquo;Supergirl&rdquo; in front of the mirror, too. It feels silly at first &mdash; okay, maybe the whole time &mdash; but trust me, something shifts in your mindset. Read this book. Seriously.</p> <p><strong>4.<em> Leadership BS: Fixing Workplaces and Careers One Truth at a Time</em></strong> (HarperBusiness, 2015) by&nbsp;<a href="http://www.audible.com/search/ref=a_pd_Busine_c2_1_auth?searchAuthor=Jeffrey+Pfeffer">Jeffrey Pfeffer</a>. Sometimes I&rsquo;m hopelessly optimistic. It&rsquo;s annoying. I grabbed this book because I wanted to read something that would go against everything else I&rsquo;ve read and show me the dark underbelly of leadership roles. Pfeffer gets real in <em>Leadership BS</em>, calling BS on many of the classic leadership lessons from the last few decades. I found this book to be funny, insightful, and grounding.<span id="cke_bm_183E" style="display: none;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>My leap into leadership has been very educational, sometimes messy, often humbling, but overall fun and exciting. Every day is different, and I am trying to absorb as much as I can from my company and brand leaders, our agents, and the staff. I have copious to-do lists and a 10-section notebook that I keep with notes and ideas on everything from culture to technology. Hopefully, what I&rsquo;ve learned can help you learn.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>First-hand tips and tools for transitioning into a leadership role.</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/apr16_BB_new_broker_0.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=38974">apr16_BB_new_broker.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/apr16_BB_new_broker.jpg?1459881250" /> </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/apr16_LP_BB_new_broker.jpg?1459881302" /> </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/2013/09/push-or-pull-secret-leading-motivating-and-inspiring">Push or Pull? The Secret To Leading, Motivating, and Inspiring</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/feature/article/2010/04/9-ways-lower-stress-your-office">9 Ways to Lower the Stress in Your Office</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/05/help-young-agents-flourish">Help Young Agents Flourish</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/08/natural-born-leader">A Natural-Born Leader</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> Network Fri, 01 Apr 2016 19:10:53 +0000 echristoffer 20860 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Is Your Website ADA Compliant? http://realtormag.realtor.org/technology/feature/article/2016/04/your-website-ada-compliant <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 may only be a matter of time before the online world is held to the same accessibility standards that buildings are. Here’s how to get ready. </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">Saturday, April 2, 2016</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/lesley-m-walker">Lesley M. Walker</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>When you think of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), you might envision ramps to make it easier for people who use wheelchairs to physically access buildings. But today, with so much commerce being conducted online, some courts are finding that websites must also be accessible to people with visual and other impairments. That could mean big changes to how your professional, brokerage, and association websites work in the future.</p> <p>The ADA is silent on the issue of online accommodation because the Act predates the widespread use of the Internet. Without clear guidance, consumers and businesses have had to turn to courts around the country to resolve the question of whether the ADA&rsquo;s accessibility obligations extend to a business&rsquo;s online presence. Courts are split on the question of if and when a business is obligated to create an accessible website. However, an accumulation of case law now asserts that a business&rsquo;s accessibility obligations do indeed extend to its website, so it&rsquo;s a smart risk management decision to evaluate your own websites now.</p> <p>To further underscore the timeliness of undertaking this evaluation, activity at the Department of Justice, the federal agency responsible for enforcing the Act, demonstrates that it is likely only a matter of time before a clear mandate of web accessibility under the ADA is issued. The DOJ has long taken the broad position that the ADA&rsquo;s obligations extend to all websites under Title III, the section of the ADA that applies to businesses. Back in September 2010, the DOJ issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding the accessibility of web information and services, which sought to add web accessibility requirements to Title III. Meanwhile, DOJ enforcement actions, demand letters, and complaints filed by private litigants are adding up. While a final rule isn&rsquo;t expected until sometime in 2018, the DOJ&rsquo;s position&mdash;and the significant amount of enforcement activity it&rsquo;s conducted to underscore that position&mdash;means it&rsquo;s time for professionals to start thinking about making changes.</p> <p>At this point you may be asking yourself, &ldquo;What exactly does an accessible website look like?&rdquo; In practice, it doesn&rsquo;t necessarily look all that different to people without disabilities. An accessible website allows adaptive software and specialized browsers used by persons with disabilities to augment content and make it easier to consume. For example, these programs might add text descriptions to complex graphics, voice-overs that read text aloud, or transcripts of videos. Accessible websites allow the specialized programs and browsers to easily interact with a website in order to improve and help maximize a person&rsquo;s experience on the site, obtaining the site&rsquo;s information in a format that takes their disability into account.&nbsp;</p> <p>So what can you, as a business owner, do to get ahead of this issue? As a first step, contact your website provider to inquire about the current accessibility of your site, and ask what it&rsquo;s currently doing to create or improve accessibility. If you operate your own website and do not have the technical expertise in-house, consult one of the many technical experts who specialize in creating and maintaining accessible websites. A technical expert can help identify where your site might fail to comply with the &ldquo;Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0,&rdquo; a technical standard created by the World Wide Web Consortium to help developers and site managers make the web more accessible.</p> <p>Once you understand what accessibility improvements to your website are needed, changes can be implemented incrementally. In their settlement orders, the DOJ has generally allowed businesses up to 18 months to implement necessary accessibility changes to their sites. And remember, even after your website is updated, you should ensure ongoing compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 when you add new content or website features. Educate and train relevant personnel to ensure they are knowledgeable about and focused on your business&rsquo;s online accessibility. Technical experts are also available to monitor your website and alert you when a change or remediation is necessary.</p> <object align="right"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="225" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/xQpmefcrHZk" width="400"></iframe></object> <p>You might also consider making it easier for users of your site who may be disabled to get in touch. A simple feedback form can help them inform you about what accessibility features may need to be improved or added. And adding contact information for someone at your business who can respond to a particular user&rsquo;s inability to access the site, or a portion of it, is a proactive step your business can take to address site accessibility issues up front in order to avoid running into legal problems later.</p> <p>With more and more business being conducted over the Internet, and the likely changes to the regulatory landscape, getting out in front of the online accessibility issue is a smart business decision. Not only can it help you avoid legal risks down the road, it also establishes your business as accessible to all and may enhance your reputation and even your bottom line.</p> <p>If you are attending the 2016 REALTORS&reg; Legislative Meetings &amp; Trade Expo in Washington, D.C., don&rsquo;t miss the Risk Management and License Law Forum on May 11 from 12:15&nbsp;p.m. to 1:45&nbsp;p.m. The program, dedicated to website accessibility, will feature two expert speakers on the issue, including an attorney who specializes in the Americans with Disabilities Act and who has vast experience in website accessibility claims, along with a technical expert who creates and maintains accessible websites.</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>It may only be a matter of time before the online world is held to the same accessibility standards that buildings are. Here&rsquo;s how to get ready.</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/apr16_LE_ada.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=33970">apr16_LE_ada.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/apr16_LE_ada_0.jpg?1459871577" /> </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/apr16_LP_LE_ada.jpg?1459871602" /> </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/2014/07/head-website-accessibility-issues">Head Off Website Accessibility Issues</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/law-and-ethics/feature/article/2014/09/websites-public-accommodations">Websites: Public Accommodations?</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/11/24/check-how-mobile-friendly-your-website">Check How Mobile-Friendly Your Website Is </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, 31 Mar 2016 14:13:28 +0000 mwhite 20851 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Under the Sells-Scope: Floorplan Revolution http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/03/under-sells-scope-floorplan-revolution <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"> Get a video walkthrough of floor plan software released at SXSW that could be a game changer for new-home sales. </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, March 29, 2016</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/lee-davenport">Lee Davenport</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>You love listing new-construction homes, but for some reason the thrill is gone. Maybe you&rsquo;re tired of handing out the same old folder of floor plan drawings. Maybe that miniature model isn&rsquo;t capturing the imagination of your prospective buyers.</p> <p>Brokers and agents selling new homes today need a revolutionary floor plan tool, so I went on the hunt for one. I found <a href="http://www.trick3d.com/" target="_blank">Trick3D</a>, a virtual reality and animation studio that produced the short film &ldquo;An Elf&rsquo;s Story,&rdquo; which unveiled one of its latest projects at <a href="http://www.sxsw.com/about" target="_blank">South by Southwest</a> this month in Austin, Texas: <a href="https://www.floorplan-revolution.com/" target="_blank">Floorplan Revolution</a>.</p> <p>In a nutshell, the software, which is still being beta tested, turns traditional two-dimensional floor plans into an immersive experience that potential buyers can navigate from their computers, smartphones, tablets, or via a virtual reality device, all before the physical space is even developed.</p> <p>I looked at Floorplan Revolution to determine whether this new solution really lives up to the needs of real estate sales and leasing agents. Here are my two initial takeaways after seeing the software in action:</p> <p>1. It takes less than 10 minutes of your time to request a 3-D virtual rendering. Upload your floor plans to the Floorplan Revolution site and select the relevant parameters and add-ons, such as room dimensions, features, finishes, and furniture. <em>Amazing.</em></p> <p>2. No additional hardware is required to receive the virtual rendering other than your computer or mobile device. <em>Doubly amazing.</em></p> <p>Watch the video below to see how I used a real new-construction home listed by one of my coaching clients to try this software out. I&rsquo;ll walk you through the product and the rest of Floorplan Revolution&rsquo;s benefits, and you&rsquo;ll also hear my&nbsp;wish list&nbsp;of enhancements for the product.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="335" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ryev1eReyw0" width="625"></iframe></p> <p>As real estate brokers, there is no surprise that we want to recruit agents who are talented in generating sales and closing deals. For early adopters, I can see Floorplan Revolution contributing to a brokerage firm&#39;s marketing edge in recruiting agents who have long-standing relationships with developers. This tool could also better position a brokerage looking to exclusively list properties for real estate developers and builders.&nbsp; Of course, a broker would have to effectively market his or her company in the context of offering this innovative technology to these key players.</p> <p>Floorplan Revolution is currently offering a special price of $950 per floor plan, and I was given a free trial as a beta tester so the company could get my feedback. This commentary, however, was not offered in exchange for the software.</p> <p>So, what do you think? Will you be considering Floorplan Revolution? I would love to read your thoughts below.&nbsp;Or, give me a shout on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/YourRealEstateInformant" target="_blank">Facebook</a>, <a href="https://instagram.com/learnwithlee.realtor/" target="_blank">Instagram</a>, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/user/leedavenport8?sub_confirmation=1" target="_blank">YouTube</a>, or <a href="http://google.com/+leedavenport" target="_blank">Google+</a> or at <a href="http://www.agentsaroundatlanta.com/" target="_blank">LearnWithLee.Realtor</a>. And, consider getting a copy of my five-star&ndash;rated workbook,&nbsp;<a href="http://amzn.com/1508652325" target="_blank">Plan to Win</a>, to help transform your real estate sales game plan. Here&rsquo;s to your success.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Get a video walkthrough of floor plan software released at SXSW that could be a game changer for new-home sales.</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/mar16_BB_floorplan.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=77502">mar16_BB_floorplan.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/mar16_BB_floorplan_0.jpg?1459361291" /> </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/mar16_LP_BB_floorplan.jpg?1459361339" /> </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/2013/09/using-floor-plans-and-photography-in-real-estate-ads">Using Floor Plans and Photography in Real Estate Ads</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/03/26/app-turns-iphone-taps-floor-plans">App Turns iPhone Taps Into Floor Plans</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/02/training-agents-new-construction">Training Agents on New Construction</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/11/realtybackoffice-goes-under-sells-scope">RealtyBackOffice Goes Under the Sells-Scope</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/home-and-design/architecture-coach/article/2012/02/staging-for-listing-photos">Staging for Listing Photos</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> Network Tue, 29 Mar 2016 21:16:58 +0000 echristoffer 20837 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Improve Your Video Conferencing Skills http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/03/improve-your-video-conferencing-skills <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 time to get off the phone and start preparing to lead screen-to-screen meetings. </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, March 24, 2016</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/doug-devitre">Doug Devitre</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>I&rsquo;ve heard many&nbsp;justifications from managing brokers, team leaders, and agents who are afraid to conduct meetings through video conferencing.</p> <p><em>&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t like the way I look on camera.&rdquo; </em></p> <p>When you meet someone in person, do you wear a sheet over your head?</p> <p><em>&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t know how to use the video camera.&rdquo; </em></p> <p>That excuse probably wouldn&rsquo;t fly with your grandchild. Why not practice with your family or friends?</p> <p><em>&ldquo;It never seems to work right when I need it most.&rdquo; </em></p> <p>Neither does your car.&nbsp;Once you know what could go wrong, then you can determine whether to fix it yourself or call for help.</p> <p><em>&ldquo;Equipment is expensive, and we don&rsquo;t have the funds to equip our meeting room with fancy technology.&rdquo;</em></p> <p>The price of audiovisual equipment, maintenance, and installation has come down significantly over the past 10 years.</p> <p>If the concept of meeting <a href="http://screentoscreenselling.com/" target="_blank">screen-to-screen</a> is new to you, don&rsquo;t worry. Let me help you not only get the right equipment but also develop the skills that will improve your business.</p> <p>Here are five reasons to meet screen-to-screen:</p> <h4>1.&nbsp;It improves communication for visual learners.</h4> <p>Collaborating over the phone is best suited for the auditory learners, which represents 30 percent of the population, according to the University of Alabama School of Medicine. Meanwhile, 65 percent of the population are considered visual learners (the remaining 5 percent are kinesthetic or tactile learners).&nbsp;That means the vast majority of people require visual stimulation or engagement with visuals to best understand a concept.&nbsp;Strictly using the phone for conference calls puts some team members at a disadvantage because they&rsquo;re&nbsp;handicapped by the way they process information.</p> <h4>2. Team member intent is exposed.</h4> <p>The best gift one person can give another is his or her undivided attention. Over the phone, you never know if someone is either multitasking or listening intently to what you&rsquo;re saying.&nbsp;But with a webcam, you can see facial expressions, body gestures, and eye movement, which can signal a person&rsquo;s true intent.</p> <h4>3. You can build rapport more quickly.</h4> <p>You can make a better connection when you can see whom you are speaking with and notice little things about his or her environment you have in common, such as the art hanging on the wall behind their desk or a book on their shelf.&nbsp;These visual cues allow you to deliver compliments, demonstrate your interest, and relate to one another in a unique way that the phone cannot deliver.</p> <h4>4. Team productivity improves with visual frames.</h4> <p>Have you ever been on a teleconference call where similar ideas are regurgitated with no end in sight? If the team is not on the same page, that&rsquo;s because they have no mental hook to hang their ideas on. That&rsquo;s where visuals come in. Visual aids will frame an&nbsp;idea to&nbsp;allow the team to select or deselect alternatives quickly. You&rsquo;ve heard a picture is worth a thousand words; well, a screen share is worth a million. Save the back-and-forth and add visuals to the conversation.</p> <h4>5. Mobile video conferencing equipment is now affordable.</h4> <p>Have you ever gathered everyone around the room to squeeze inside the camera view of your laptop?&nbsp;No wonder you&rsquo;re avoiding screen-to-screen meetings.&nbsp;The good news is that nearly all smartphones, laptops, and tablets today have video conferencing and screen-sharing capabilities. If you have some people assembled as a group while others are afar, try the <a href="http://www.logitech.com/en-us/product/conferencecam-connect" target="_blank">Logitech ConferenceCam Connect</a> to capture a small group on video. Then, all you need is a HDMI cord to connect your laptop to a flat screen TV so that all participants are seen and heard.</p> <p>To the <a href="http://screentoscreenselling.com/" target="_blank">screen-to-screen</a> naysayers who are justifying their beliefs, behaviors, and budgets to protect their preferred way of doing business: I get it.&nbsp;Why fix something when it isn&rsquo;t broken? But when I hear, &ldquo;I&rsquo;m overwhelmed. We can&rsquo;t seem to get enough done in a day,&rdquo; or &ldquo;We did all this work to prepare and didn&rsquo;t get the participation we expected,&rdquo; then I challenge you to make the time to develop a more effective and efficient process with the tips I listed above.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>It&rsquo;s time to get off the phone and start preparing to lead screen-to-screen meetings.</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/mar16_BB_videoconf.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=61567">mar16_BB_videoconf.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/mar16_BB_videoconf_0.jpg?1459362109" /> </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/mar16_LP_BB_videoconf.jpg?1459362142" /> </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/web-tools/article/2015/07/screen-screen-selling-5-ideas-for-brokers">Screen-to-Screen Selling: 5 Ideas for Brokers</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/feature/article/2012/06/5-ways-use-online-collaboration-tools">5 Ways to Use Online Collaboration Tools</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/07/empower-agents-screen-screen-selling">Empower Agents With Screen-to-Screen Selling</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/01/brokerage-technology-game-changers">Brokerage Technology Game Changers</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> Network Thu, 24 Mar 2016 22:14:54 +0000 echristoffer 20817 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Make Your Listing Attractive to Young Families http://realtormag.realtor.org/home-and-design/feature/article/2016/03/make-your-listing-attractive-young-families <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 don’t need a swing set out back to attract this growing demographic. Take time to understand the needs and wants of today’s young families to succeed in getting their attention. </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, March 22, 2016</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/bryn-huntpalmer">Bryn Huntpalmer</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Many young home buyers have the romantic and creative impulse to purchase a home that needs significant renovations. They are willing to spend weekends painting or refinishing original wood floors in order to truly make their mark on their home. However, families with children are often short on both time and money, and they may not have enough of either to see these dreams come to fruition in a home that requires serious work.</p> <p>That&rsquo;s why listings that will truly attract these young buyers need to encapsulate that do-it-yourself spirit without also communicating a potential to send budding families spiraling into debt. These tips will help prospective buyers see your listing as a space where they can comfortably raise their family without breaking the bank.</p> <h4>Balance Financials With DIY Appeal</h4> <p>Typically, younger buyers tend to be more budget-conscious. Your average under-35 couple isn&rsquo;t going to be well suited, financially speaking, to a fixer-upper. But that doesn&rsquo;t mean they don&rsquo;t want one. Research indicates that younger buyers are still opting for fixer-uppers &mdash; at least <a href="http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/articles/2015/08/05/why-millennials-are-dominating-the-housing-market" target="_blank">62 percent of young home owners have renovated</a>, according to a 2015 study from Houzz.</p> <p>This generation has a DIY attitude and, as real estate agents can attest, this approach translates to home ownership as well. Buyer&rsquo;s reps should take care to lead younger clients with limited financial wiggle room to listings that can balance their desire to remake the space with their fiscal reality. They&rsquo;ll do well in homes that need a cosmetic update but not a total renovation, and they can benefit greatly from your experience. Young buyers may come in loaded with their own research, but they still need your professional opinion, especially when it comes to making sound financial investments and estimating their families&rsquo; capacity for remodeling.</p> <h4>Advise Sellers to Handle Smaller Repairs</h4> <p>While it&rsquo;s true that younger buyers are drawn to repair projects, a huge list of small, unrewarding tasks isn&rsquo;t likely to get their creative juices flowing. Some projects may seem trivial or simple to your sellers, like reattaching a loose gutter or putting new childproof covers on electrical sockets. But if you can help them imagine the stress of adding those projects onto the already long to-do list common to young families, it could go a long way in convincing them of the need to tackle some of these pesky tasks.</p> <p>Take your sellers on a room-by-room tour of their home with a list of necessary repairs, from windows that are painted shut to light switches that no longer work. Explain that taking the time to make these simple, inexpensive repairs will go a long way to putting prospective home buyers&rsquo; minds at ease. Additionally, while every home grows infinitely more appealing after a deep cleaning, parents in particular are drawn to a spotless interior &mdash; the kind of place where they can picture their children growing up, instead of those that conjure up the fear of mold hiding under baseboards.</p> <h4>Invest in a Fence for the Yard</h4> <p>Your listing&rsquo;s backyard doesn&rsquo;t need to include a full jungle gym in order to appeal to a family with young kids. Installing a privacy fence can yield a 50 percent return on the seller&rsquo;s investment, <a href="http://realtytimes.com/consumeradvice/homeownersadvice1/item/34773-20150506-fencing-can-add-value-to-your-home" target="_blank">according to a recent article at Realty Times</a>. Meanwhile, prospective home buyers will see a space where their children and pets can play freely without worrying about passing cars or strangers. Staging the backyard with items like patio furniture, a fire pit, or even a hammock will help young buyers imagine relaxing weekends spent making memories with their families.</p> <h4>Draw Attention to Energy-Efficient, Eco-Friendly Features</h4> <p>Virtually all home shoppers appreciate energy-efficient features that can provide monthly budget relief, but young parents may be especially focused on providing a healthier environment where their children can grow and live. Even little items like a smart thermostat can be surprisingly important selling points to a young family, thanks to the low-effort opportunities it provides to reduce a growing family&rsquo;s footprint. Create a narrative in your listing that highlights spaces for gardens and a rain collection barrel. Many parents today are looking for ways to teach their children about healthy food choices and conservation. Older kids might have a greater appreciation for new chores when parents encourage them to take on the responsibility of caring for plants.</p> <h4>Highlight Open Kitchens in Your Listings</h4> <p>When recitals and soccer practice have to be fit in between growing work demands, a formal dining room may be less appealing to younger buyers than, say, a wide kitchen island with bar seating. Of course, not every house comes complete with an open-plan kitchen, but adding recessed storage, open shelving units, and extra light can do a lot to make a cramped space feel more inviting for the whole family. Be sure to mention small details in this important room, such as the view of the backyard from the window over the kitchen sink. That way, buyers can imagine themselves watching their children play while preparing meals.</p> <p>Remember: For young families, buying a home is an emotionally fraught time. They aren&rsquo;t just investing in a house, they are envisioning what their whole family will look like in the coming years, or even putting down roots in a new city. As a real estate professional, you know that walls can be easily repainted and light fixtures updated. But your understanding of how these minor issues impact first-time buyers brings added value that cannot be quantified.</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 don&rsquo;t need a swing set out back to attract this growing demographic. Take time to understand the needs and wants of today&rsquo;s young families to succeed in getting their attention.</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/mar16_SM_families.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=111340">mar16_SM_families.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/mar16_SM_families_0.jpg?1458677521" /> </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/mar16_LP_SM_families.jpg?1458677548" /> </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/2011/09/16-ways-get-kids-your-side">16 Ways to Get Kids on Your Side</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/home-and-design/architecture-coach/article/2016/01/put-cool-back-in-ranch-style-homes">Put the Cool Back in Ranch-Style Homes</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/home-and-design/feature/article/2015/09/arranging-perfect-home-workspace">Arranging the Perfect At-Home Workspace</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 Tue, 22 Mar 2016 18:21:51 +0000 mwhite 20803 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Video: What is a Good Neighbor? http://realtormag.realtor.org/good-neighbor-awards/article/2016/03/video-what-good-neighbor <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"> Nominate someone or apply to be a 2016 Good Neighbor Awards honoree by May 13. </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, March 22, 2016</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><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/3e0b2YzwIm8" width="560"></iframe></p> <p>Calling all exceptional REALTORS&reg; making a difference through volunteer work!</p> <p>Apply to be a 2016 Good Neighbor Awards honoree by May 13, and you could win $10,000 for your community. Find out more information about what makes a Good Neighbor <a href="http://www.realtor.org/gna">here</a>.</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>Nominate someone or apply to be a 2016 Good Neighbor Awards honoree by May 13.</p> </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 Tue, 22 Mar 2016 20:23:02 +0000 mbrozanic 20804 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Use Seminars to Attract More Qualified Clients http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2016/03/use-seminars-attract-more-qualified-clients <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"> Hosting real estate classes gets you in front of prospects, but you have to choose the right topic to get the right client. </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, March 23, 2016</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/tonya-eberhart-and-michael-carr">Tonya Eberhart and Michael Carr</a> </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p>Hosting a home buyer or home seller seminar or teaching a real estate class in your community can kill two birds with one stone: It&rsquo;s a great way to get in front of a room full of prospects while also branding yourself as a local real estate expert. But what are the chances that the people who show up will convert into clients?</p> <p>Though your goal is to fill the seats at your seminar, remember that you want to fill them with <em>qualified</em> prospects. You&rsquo;re not trying to appeal to thousands of people who want a free lesson on the basics of real estate. If that&rsquo;s your audience, you&rsquo;ll end up with a bunch of people who could be anywhere in the real estate process &mdash; and nowhere near making a decision to use your services. You should be seeking the type of crowd that will bring a few ideal customers who are in the market to make a decision <em>now</em>.</p> <p>How do you attract that kind of audience? Your seminars are an extension of your marketing, and what we know about marketing is that you have to target a specific audience. So with your seminars, the more specific your topic and content is, the more you can target a particular audience &mdash; one that&rsquo;s ready to make a move.</p> <p class="rtecenter"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="480" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/fgo6vsVqpws" width="640"></iframe></p> <p>Most agents who have used seminars as a marketing tool promote broad-range topics such as a &ldquo;First-time Buyers Seminar.&rdquo; The target audience for that kind of topic is anyone who fits the bill of a first-time buyer, even if they plan on waiting years to make their first real estate purchase. The topic lacks a specific focus, so its effect is lackluster at best. But let&rsquo;s say you specialize in lakefront properties: &ldquo;How to Find the Perfect Lakefront Home&rdquo; is a seminar topic that speaks directly to your desired audience and will likely attract consumers who are already in that particular market right now.</p> <p>As you position your seminar around a specific topic, think about three things:</p> <ul> <li>What specific knowledge is your ideal customer seeking, and what knowledge do you possess that they might not even know they need?</li> <li>What is your point of differentiation? What do you know or do that sets you apart from every other agent in your market?</li> <li>What&rsquo;s topical in your community right now, and how is it applicable to your ideal customer?</li> </ul> <p>When you define these things, your signature speaking topic should become clear and more poignant. Let&rsquo;s take a look at how we can modify general topics to become much more compelling in order to draw in a more qualified audience. Here are some categories and specific topics to consider:</p> <h4>Be Specific About the Resources</h4> <p><em>Seminar topic: &ldquo;How to Buy Your First Home With No Money Down Using a USDA Loan&rdquo;</em></p> <p>It&rsquo;s no secret that credit scores are not what they used to be, and this applies to older home buyers as well as younger first-timers. New lending resources are an excellent means of helping someone purchase a home, and sharing your knowledge about this can be an extremely effective way to get new clients. For added value and an opportunity to convert attendees into clients faster, bring in a lending professional as your partner.</p> <h4>Be Specific About the Audience</h4> <p><em>Seminar topic: &ldquo;First-time Home Buyer Seminar for Teachers&rdquo; </em></p> <p>Many people in your sphere of influence are involved in particular organizations or come from specific professional backgrounds, such as the local school system. Why not host a session specifically for teachers? While the real estate process may be the same for them as most other prospects, focusing specifically on teachers will make it much more meaningful to that audience and set the stage for referrals within their community. In most cases, you&rsquo;ll have more business than you can handle in just one category if you do it well.</p> <h4>Be Specific About the Area</h4> <p><em>Seminar topic: &ldquo;What You Need to Know When Buying a Home in a Golf Course Community&rdquo;</em></p> <p>When seeking a home, most buyers already know the areas they&rsquo;d like to consider, especially when it comes to upscale living. Golf course communities and waterfront properties are usually near the top of this list. If you are knowledgeable about a specific neighborhood or community, use that expertise to help people learn about existing homes, new construction, sought-after lots, association fees, and rules and regulations. The more exclusive the area, the more the buyer prefers to work with someone who has clear and specific knowledge of that area.</p> <h4>Be Specific About the Property Type</h4> <p><em>Seminar topic: &ldquo;What You Should Know About Downsizing to a Condo or Townhome&rdquo;</em></p> <p>Condos and townhomes are an excellent choice for many people who prefer certain community aspects, a wide array of amenities, and, of course, less maintenance and upkeep than a traditional home. For those seeking this choice for the first time, you can become a tremendous resource. This &ldquo;downsizing&rdquo; topic mostly applies to empty nesters and those entering retirement age, but you can adjust the topic to suit a different audience, such as young professionals who travel often and prefer a lifestyle of low-maintenance living.</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>Hosting real estate classes gets you in front of prospects, but you have to choose the right topic to get the right client.</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/mar16_SM_seminars.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=58582">mar16_SM_seminars.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/mar16_SM_seminars_0.jpg?1458662212" /> </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/mar16_LP_SM_seminars.jpg?1458662237" /> </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/2008/04/10-ways-run-effective-real-estate-seminar">10 Ways to Run an Effective Real Estate Seminar</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/technology/mr-internet/article/2009/07/expand-your-reach-webinars">Expand Your Reach With Webinars</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2005/03/6-weeks-perfect-buyer-seminar">6 Weeks to the Perfect Buyer Seminar</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, 21 Mar 2016 14:59:18 +0000 gwood 20794 at http://realtormag.realtor.org Working With Chinese Buyers http://realtormag.realtor.org/for-brokers/network/article/2016/03/working-chinese-buyers <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"> Peter Hernandez, president and founder of California-based Teles Properties, discusses the complexities that have led to a boom in Chinese home 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">Monday, March 21, 2016</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>As Chinese nationals flock to coastal cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, and New York, the broker-owners and agents at California-based <a href="https://telesproperties.com/" target="_blank">Teles Properties</a> have naturally become experts on the Chinese buyer segment.&nbsp;They&rsquo;ve even seen more Chinese buyers than local buyers in some areas of Southern California, says Teles Properties president and founder Peter Hernandez.</p> <p>Indeed, on a national level, Chinese buyers have surpassed Canadians in U.S. real estate purchases, spending $28.6 billion last year compared to $11.2 billion, respectively, according to the National Association of REALTORS&reg;&rsquo; 2015 Profile of Home Buying Activity of International Clients. They&rsquo;re seeking not only safe monetary harbors but also better educational opportunities for their children, Hernandez says.</p> <p>He specifically pointed out the Los Angeles suburb of Arcadia as an example of where &ldquo;Chinese millionaires have created their own Shangri-la.&rdquo; The Chinese population of Arcadia was 44 percent in 2010, and it has only continued to grow each year since. It has been dubbed the &ldquo;Chinese Beverly Hills,&rdquo; he says.</p> <p>Hernandez, a forty-year industry veteran, offered his candid market insights in REALTOR&reg; Magazine&rsquo;s Broker-to-Broker Q&amp;A:</p> <p><strong><img alt="Peter Hernandez" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/Peter%20Hernandez.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 240px; float: right;" />Can you give us a bird&rsquo;s-eye view of the current economic situation in China?</strong></p> <p>Like most everything today, the Chinese economy is settling into a new normal. Some might argue that with the economic growth rate slowing to 7 percent, China is heading for the abyss. But in most any other country, that rate would actually be considered quite high. Take the U.S., for example: The rate of economic growth for 2015 was about 2.5 percent. In Japan, the average growth rate from 1988 to 2015 has held steady at roughly 2 percent annually, and in France, it has been consistently averaging 3.33 percent since 1950. The U.K. reported 2.2 percent growth last year, and Germany advanced only 1.7 percent in 2015. Therefore, in reality, China&rsquo;s 7 percent trumps the top five economies in the world by a landslide.</p> <p>The actions taken by the Chinese government to stimulate economic growth over the last six years kept the country awash with cash. The government also made policy changes that eased restrictions on individuals who wanted to move large sums of money out of the country. That provided a kind of slush fund for investing abroad. With the market destabilized, that has, of course, created some fear and anxiety, particularly in those holding so much cash, and they&rsquo;re seeking out greener pastures. Many Chinese investors see this as an opportunity to broaden their horizons beyond the real estate market.</p> <p>From a Hollywood perspective, we are seeing the Chinese&nbsp;entering the entertainment world and other westernized industries with increased investment. Western film companies are starting to wise up to China&rsquo;s movie market, and, let&rsquo;s face it, they have 8.2 billion reasons to do so, since that&rsquo;s the amount of revenue (in U.S. dollars) that Citigroup research expects will be spent in mainland China box offices in 2016.&nbsp;That 28 percent year-over-year increase means China is closing in on the U.S., the world&rsquo;s largest film market, which is expected to see approximately $11 billion of box-office revenue in 2016.&nbsp;With this huge potential market in mind, Western movie companies have been offering more parts to Chinese actors and actresses as well as featuring mainland locations prominently in their biggest recent releases. Chinese companies are also funneling investment into film studios, with particularly active firms such as Dalian Wanda and Hony Capital. So there are these behind-the-scenes scenarios playing out as a byproduct of the current conditions in China.</p> <p>All we hear about is the gloom and doom of the stock market. But China has fast become a country of opportunists no longer shy about integrating with the West. India did it long ago. So rather than seeing China heading for disaster, I view it more like a restructuring &mdash; a market correction.</p> <p><strong>How will the U.S. housing market benefit from China&rsquo;s market woes? </strong></p> <p>Considering that China has never been so large and so powerful until now, these are uncharted waters for all of us. Depending on your sphere of influence, it can be seen as favorable or unfavorable. Here is how I view it as a real estate professional who has lived through three U.S. recessions: When a big giant falls, there is a domino effect. China may or may not have been part of a recession that began in the U.S. in 2007&ndash;08 and spread to Europe, Greece, etc. We have been through our correction, and China will likely go through theirs as well.</p> <p>Could it be very bad for the global economy? Sure, but China&rsquo;s stock market is in its infancy, and the banks in Europe and the United States are tied together and very strong right now. China being primarily a manufacturing country and not a superpower of the financial world may be the defining factor &mdash; and one that keeps the rest of the world relatively stable while funneling more money into the U.S. housing market.</p> <p>In many ways, China&rsquo;s market woes have actually been a catalyst for a nation and culture that historically rejected Western society. In fact, the world&rsquo;s largest source of international students in 2016 will likely come from China, where competition is fierce for university seats and top positions in the workforce. The allure of a Western education is secondary to what Teles refers to as the &ldquo;flight to safety,&rdquo; which will always play a key role in Chinese and other international buyers investing in U.S. property.</p> <p>Chinese buyers looking to offshore their investment capital are doing what anyone with wealth would do when their country&rsquo;s economy begins to shake and rattle. It&rsquo;s in our human nature to seek greener grass and focus on the preservation of self and wealth.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s no arguing the fact that Chinese buyers have been our biggest spenders, spending more than double two years ago. Chinese purchases in overseas commercial real estate jumped 49 percent last year, according to Jones Lang LaSalle. China&rsquo;s market woes have provided impetus for more Chinese to invest in the U.S. housing market. The housing prices, the quality of education, and the quality of the environment all increase the magnetic pull to the U.S.</p> <p><strong>How do housing prices in the U.S. compare with housing prices in China&rsquo;s largest cities?</strong></p> <p>By the third quarter of 2015, the housing price index in China was 699.8 compared to the U.S. HPI of 400, making the U.S. look like a bargain.</p> <p><strong>Are most Chinese buyers in the U.S.&nbsp;purchasing to occupy or for investment?&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Like big cities in Japan, the price of real estate in Beijing is extremely high, and there are not many options for investing like there are in the West. The entertainment industry is a good example. Right now, real estate seems to be the panacea. Some Chinese buyers are purchasing homes purely as investments, capitalizing on surging rents in many parts of the U.S. Others are trying to move their money beyond the reach of the Chinese government. Then there are those who have their children&rsquo;s education and future in mind, picking up homes in good school districts or close to universities. At the upper echelon, the wealthy are hoping for green cards, joining with developers to take advantage of a federal program that puts them on the fast track for residency. So it&rsquo;s truly a combination of buying to occupy and to invest for the future.</p> <p><strong>How do real estate </strong><strong>professional</strong><strong>s break into this niche? </strong></p> <p>The key word is &ldquo;professional.&rdquo; First and foremost, I would say deep experience is a necessity, followed by a willingness to adapt to the buyer mindset. This includes having or developing foreign-language skills or partnering with an agent who does. Then it is critical to travel abroad to trade shows, advertise on foreign websites, and invest in other media. Finally, it takes developing a personal database one client at a time and focusing on areas where international buyers are buying.</p> <p><strong>How did you become experts in working with Chinese buyers?</strong></p> <p>Working with Chinese buyers requires a different mindset, such as taking into account cultural beliefs and traditions, in addition to local market expertise. Combining intelligence and insight, Teles has gained a competitive advantage in working with Chinese buyers, as well as international buyers. And here&rsquo;s how we did it: Our CEO and Chairman Peter Loewy, who was the managing partner for Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen &amp; Loewy &mdash; the largest immigration law firm in the world &mdash; understood early on that international sales requires a personal and targeted approach. So he created a database of international relationships with advisers representing attorneys, business managers, architects, notaries, emissaries, and other professionals around the world who receive our property offerings, and they pass them along to their clients when relevant. Since curating this international gateway network and database, Teles Properties has facilitated more than $1 billion in listings and direct sales to overseas clients in just the last four years.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>What percentage of your deals come from Chinese clients? </strong></p> <p>While statistics for the market at large show 7 percent of all sales in California are from international buyers, our sales are higher by approximately 10 percent. Buyers from mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan made up 43 percent of international purchases in California in 2015.</p> <p><strong>What are&nbsp;some common purchasing hurdles, and how can U.S.&nbsp;agents and brokers help?&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>The language barrier, of course, is an obvious and significant hurdle, yet many affluent Chinese buyers are highly educated and either speak English or have the means to provide a translator. More proactive real estate brokers and agents, however, anticipate the need for meeting Chinese buyers on their level and, therefore, take the initiative to either develop language skills or use interpreters to bridge the communications gap.</p> <p>There are also common cultural practices one should observe in order to avoid situations that may cause a Chinese buyer to back out. In addition to understanding the principles and importance of feng shui, lucky numbers, auspicious dates and years, it is critical to understand rank, seniority, and Chinese attitudes regarding personal space. For example, Chinese people typically do not greet with a hug. They go out of their way to show respect to elders and avoid causing feelings of shame or embarrassment. In other words, they are tactful in declining an offer of any kind.</p> <p>Financing issues can also pose serious setbacks. Brokers and agents who have a firm grasp on foreign monetary restrictions, barriers to qualifying for financing, and U.S. tax implications and tax withholding requirements are the most well-positioned to see transactions through to the close. Above all, agents and brokers must innately understand their buyers and have good relationship with their advisors in order to avoid purchasing hurdles and successfully navigate the complexities of real estate in today&rsquo;s global market.</p> <p><strong>Have you seen an influx of Chinese builders in the U.S.? If so, what sorts of real estate projects are they taking on?&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Here in Southern California, everyone is talking about Landsea Holdings Corp., the private subsidiary overseeing U.S. development for one of China&rsquo;s top 100 builders. The Chinese homebuilder moved its headquarters to Orange County from Pasadena in early 2015 and acquired the bulk of the 95.5-acre Portola Center South project in northeast Lake Forest for an undisclosed amount. They are set to build up to 569 homes &mdash; 313 detached single-family homes plus a 256-unit multifamily development.</p> <p>On the East Coast, we&rsquo;ve been selected as the marketing agents for a large luxury project in Manhattan, at 118 E. 59th by Neo Que Yau, a world-renowned Hong Kong real estate investor and founder of Euro Properties. This is a distinct honor, particularly for a West Coast brokerage to be selected by an Asian-based group reputed for its global outlook and international reach. It&rsquo;s a modern urban escape consisting of 29 state-of-the-art single- and multifloor homes. The building was designed by SCDA Architects with an impressive 40 stories of glimmering glass walls. The one-, two- and three-bedroom condominiums &mdash; listing from $5 million to $18 million&mdash;include 10- to 20-foot ceilings, opulent master baths, and resplendent multiple exposures that capture extraordinary light and cityscapes, including spectacular views of Central Park and midtown Manhattan. These are the kinds of projects we have some significant involvement in.</p> <hr /> <p><br /> <img alt="" src="/sites/realtormag.realtor.org/files/rmo_files/images/logos/BtoB_logo_footer_080114.jpg" style="float:left; height:117px; width:150px" /><em>Broker-to-Broker is an information network that provides insights and tools with business value through timely articles, videos, Q&amp;As, and sales meeting tips for brokerage owners and managers. Get more <a href="/for-brokers/network" target="_blank">Broker-to-Broker content here</a>.</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>Peter Hernandez, designated broker and co-owner of California-based Teles Properties, discusses the complexities that have led to a boom in Chinese home 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/mar16_BB_chinese.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=53350">mar16_BB_chinese.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/mar16_BB_chinese_0.jpg?1458933988" /> </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/mar16_LP_BB_chinese.jpg?1458934013" /> </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/network/article/2016/01/building-credibility-foreign-buyers">Building Credibility With Foreign Buyers</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2015/11/ceos-share-ways-sustain-and-grow">CEOs Share Ways to Sustain and Grow </a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2015/06/19/chinese-dominate-buyers-us-real-estate">Chinese Dominate as Buyers of U.S. Real Estate</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/for-brokers/network/article/2016/03/cultivate-clients-in-your-community">Cultivate Clients in Your Community</a> </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://speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/2015/11/14/its-the-little-things-that-count-with-international-clients/" rel="nofollow">It&#039;s the Little Things That Count With International Clients</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> Network Mon, 21 Mar 2016 19:01:01 +0000 echristoffer 20795 at http://realtormag.realtor.org 3 Interactive Listings That Will Wow Prospects http://realtormag.realtor.org/product-guide/applications/article/2016/03/3-interactive-listings-will-wow-prospects <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 tools real estate professionals are using to create more dynamic online listings are revolutionizing the home-search experience. Check out these real-life examples to see how they work. </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, March 18, 2016</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>The real estate industry is increasingly focusing on 3-D technology and 360-degree imagery and video, banking on their ability to upgrade the experience of looking at listings online and open up greater marketing possibilities for practitioners. How are these advancements being used in the field right now? Take a peek at these interactive listings from three real estate professionals.</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>More Ways to Make Your Listings Interactive</strong></p> <p><a href="/product-guide/applications/article/2016/03/do-it-yourself-3-d-listings">Do-It-Yourself 3-D Listings</a><br /> Explore six products that help you create your own interactive listings.</p> <p><a href="/product-guide/applications/article/2016/03/apps-for-designing-home-virtually">Apps for Designing a Home Virtually</a><br /> Add value to your open houses or showings by providing online tools for buyers to see what a listing would look like decorated in their tastes.</p> </blockquote> <h4>Interactive Floor Plan With 360-Degree Tour</h4> <p>Deanna Whipp, marketing director for the Caskey &amp; Caskey team at Shorewood, REALTORS&reg;, in El Segundo, Calif., uses <a href="http://goiguide.com/">iGuide</a>, a technology company that takes 360-degree photos of each room of a home and combines them with an interactive floor plan. The floor plan includes virtual viewpoints in each room that users can click on for a 360-degree view.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s a phenomenal improvement to be able to put yourself in a room, turn your head, and see everything in real perspective,&rdquo; Whipp says, adding that the intuitive navigation of iGuide floor plans works for home shoppers of all ages. &ldquo;Everyone understands a floor plan and how it works. There&rsquo;s nothing anyone needs to learn in order to use an iGuide tour.&rdquo; Check out a <a href="http://872-6thst.com/">recent Caskey &amp; Caskey listing</a> using iGuide&rsquo;s technology.</p> <div id="embedded-iguide" style="display:block;position:relative;padding:0;overflow:hidden;height:0;width:100%;">&nbsp;</div> <div><script src="//youriguide.com/js/embedded.js"></script><script>initEmbeddedIGuide({"elementId":"embedded-iguide","url":"//youriguide.com/872_6th_st_manhattan_beach_ca","args":{"bgcolor":"FFFFFF","txtcolor":"000000","size":0,"unbranded":1}});</script></div> <h4>&nbsp;</h4> <h4>3-D Floor Plan With Virtual Design Capabilities</h4> <p>After one of Pamela Graham&rsquo;s sellers made renovations that resulted in a long, rectangular kitchen, prospective buyers had trouble envisioning how they would use the space. So Graham, a sales associate with Keller Williams Realty in Limerick, Pa., used <a href="http://floorplanner.com">floorplanner.com</a> to create a 3-D floor plan of the kitchen that included icons representing furniture and appliances. It was particularly useful because users could rearrange the icons to get a better idea of how the room could work for their needs.</p> <p>&ldquo;When people can explore uses for a space like that, it makes the home more marketable,&rdquo; Graham says. The home had been listed for 119 days with no offers, but after Graham let visitors use the 3-D floor plan at an open house, the property sold with multiple offers in four days. Play with the floor plan yourself below. You can rearrange furniture icons in the 2-D version and then toggle to the 3-D version to see a rendering of the new layout.</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="400" scrolling="no" src="http://plus.floorplanner.com/4190-north-gorski/embed" width="100%"></iframe></p> <h4>A 3-D Walkthrough With &lsquo;Dollhouse&rsquo; Floor Plan</h4> <p>Kevin Tolbert, broker-associate at Keller Williams Realty in Port St. Lucie, Fla., uses <a href="http://matterport.com/">Matterport</a> to create 3-D listings. The $4,500 Matterport Pro 3-D camera, which can be controlled from a mobile device, scans each room in a home to capture 3-D imagery and measure for a 2-D and 3-D &ldquo;dollhouse&rdquo; floor plan. Tolbert then uploads the images to the Matterport system to automatically assemble an interactive tour, floor plan, and 3-D rendering.</p> <p>&ldquo;Whatever is in a home, it can&rsquo;t hide from that camera,&rdquo; Tolbert says. &ldquo;A person can see a room from floor to ceiling, zoom in, and explore everything there &mdash; even the detail of the crown molding. There&rsquo;s no better way I&rsquo;ve found to see what&rsquo;s there without actually being there.&rdquo;</p> <p>He&rsquo;s the first in his market to employ the Matterport technology, and the quality of the tours has helped him win luxury listings. &ldquo;I&rsquo;ve had buyers from overseas who bought a home because of the thoroughness of these tours,&rdquo; Tolbert adds. &ldquo;They felt like they knew the home before they ever set foot in it.&rdquo; Walk through one of Tolbert&#39;s 3-D listings below.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="480" src="https://my.matterport.com/show/?m=LTAxjzg6a95" width="640"></iframe></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 tools real estate professionals are using to create more dynamic online listings are revolutionizing the home-search experience. Check out these real-life examples to see how they work.</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/mar16_PG_3d_examples.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=54586">mar16_PG_3d_examples.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/mar16_PG_3d_examples_0.jpg?1458660738" /> </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/mar16_LP_PG_3d_examples.jpg?1458660766" /> </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="/technology/feature/article/2014/09/3-d-listings-from-every-angle">3-D Listings From Every Angle</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/daily-news/2015/09/24/facebook-rolls-out-3-d-video-capability">Facebook Rolls Out 3-D Video Capability</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/daily-news/2014/10/07/should-your-listings-be-in-3-d">Should Your Listings Be in 3-D?</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> Applications Fri, 18 Mar 2016 16:25:57 +0000 gwood 20784 at http://realtormag.realtor.org