Although buying a home is still the core of the American Dream, most first-time homebuyers find the process intimidating and mysterious. Here’s your chance to help your clients better understand the homebuying process, and to educate them on many of the related expenses that first-time homebuyers often miss. Since buying a home is more than likely going to be the biggest purchase your client ever makes, keep them on guard by making them aware of the expenses that go beyond the cost of the house. Most costs are not so …

You show so many houses to so many people that you may forget that it’s a risky and potentially dangerous act. You never quite know who you are escorting through an empty property, and you may be unaware of traps that await you if you’re not as aware of your surroundings as you could be. Keep this checklist handy and look it over before you show your next house – and share it with your staff. Keep in touch Always let your staff and your broker know where you are …

Maybe it’s been a great year for you. Maybe it hasn’t been so great. Either way, if you’ve got some free time over the holidays, it’s worthwhile to sit down and try to calmly and collectively assess your past year of work. Here are a few things to consider. What drove the most leads? In the marketing business, it’s called lead attribution. Start by making a list of how you acquired each and every lead to determine what marketing activity made it possible: networking events, advertising in the local community …

To be clear, the holiday season is not the best time of year to be trying to buy or sell a home. But in real estate, the client is king. You’ll have buyers looking to grab a home before New Year’s and sellers desperate to get out just as quickly. Here are a few things to keep in mind. Do: Plan ahead Listing a home that is still occupied is always a challenge for sellers, particularly if they are typically at home during the day. Getting sellers to vacate the …

As you’re assembling a team to help you develop your business into a full-fledged real estate powerhouse, you need to think critically about the type of people you want to surround yourself with. First hire: Assistant The first step to building a strong team is finding somebody to take over much of the administrative work that you take on so that you can focus on generating leads and customer service. The top priority for an administrative assistant is finding somebody who is organized and competent, not necessarily somebody who knows …

Customer satisfaction is the foundation of success in real estate. If you’re good at bringing in leads but leave your clients unhappy, you’re going to end up with a bad reputation that makes it very difficult for you to expand. Rather than getting easy leads through referrals from satisfied customers, you’ll have to continue to spend precious time chasing down hard-to-get online leads and dollars investing in advertising. So what can you do to make sure that your customers are happy? More importantly, what can you do to know how …

As baby boomers continue to retire, you can see an increase in the number of northerners looking for a warm weather spot to spend the winter months. Although Florida and Arizona are the best-known snowbird destinations, there are plenty of other places throughout the South and West that would make attractive winter homes. People just need to learn about them. Here’s how you can help them do that. Golf courses There are very likely millions of people who could be tempted to buy a home that would provide them a …

Real estate offers a wide world of opportunity, but you will be most successful when you narrow down your skills and focus on a specialty. Set a goal to become the go-to agent for a specific area or type of property or client. However, finding what type of real estate excites you — or choosing among many — can be challenging. Ask yourself the following questions when drilling down to your specialty niche: What do I know most about my community? Research what type of people live there (for instance, …

You could be the best real estate agent in the world, but if your sellers are not doing what they can to bring quality to the home showing, all may be lost. REALTOR® magazine polled 50 buyer agents, revealing the biggest deal breakers when it comes to home showings. After 20 years of showings, Elke W. McMenemy, ABR, CIPS, broker-owner at St. Augustine Real Estate Inc. in St. Augustine, Fla., told the magazine that she has  practically seen it all, from the “fully loaded litter boxes” to the “roach-infested ovens.” …

Adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) now represent 6.4 percent of the dollar volume on mortgage applications as of August 2019, according to cnbc.com. For reference, it was at its highest point, in 2005 (pre-recession), ARMs consisted of 49.7 percent of the market. The reason: The decrease in mortgage rates have occurred due to the continuing increase in home prices. Usually ARMs have always been popular with buyers who don’t expect to stay long in their purchased property, especially if they are first-time homebuyers. Their strategy is to move before the adjustable rate …