By Jeremy Williams
I heard the song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” by Bobby McFerrin played over the radio on the way home from the office. How relevant could this song be as the theme song for the thousands of real estate business owners across the United States?
Running your own real estate business can at times be stressful and create worry. Like the lyrics from the song say, “In every life we have some trouble, when you worry you make it double. Don’t worry, be happy…”. How often do we let the little things in our business get under our skin to the point it becomes an agitation? The agitation festers and bitterness can follow. We know that it is inevitable that troubles will come, but it is how we deal with the troubles we face that will determine the outcome. So don’t worry because we know that challenges will come; instead be happy that we can prepare ourselves to deal with them.
Here are a few steps to prepare how to deal with challenges that may evoke worry:
1. When faced with worry, know that in the grand scheme of life the challenge you are facing is more than likely minimal though it may not be pleasant while you are in the situation.
2. Always know that someone has more than likely been through what you are going through in your business. Seek the advice of seasoned REALTORS concerning your business situation.
3. Avoid becoming a rain cloud to those around you.
4. Don’t forget the past, but don’t remain in the past.
5. Remember that it takes more muscles to frown than to smile. A smile can change the attitude about the situation you are in, and a smile can also positively impact those around you.
So don’t worry, be happy as you set out in your business today. What are your thoughts on this?
Jeremy Williams of Keller Williams Realty NE in Kingwood, Texas specializes in the residential real estate market of Kingwood, Atascocita, and Humble, Texas. Visit his Web site at www.williams4yourhome.com.
By Toby E. Boyce
It seems that everywhere a licensed real estate agent looks today, the discussion is centering on raising the bar (#rtb Twitter hash tag). It is has been a trending topic on Twitter, its own Google Wave, a session at Real Estate Barcamp New York, an article in Inman News, and even was featured on the YPN Lounge last week with Nobu Hata’s “For the Member, By the Members.”
In case you’ve been living under a rock, raising the bar is a discussion on increasing the standards of our profession. We are right there with used car salespeople and lawyers on a lot of industry lists. Is that where we as REALTORS® want to be? Or better yet, is that an accurate reflection on the quality of our industry? Well, perception is realty. So we need to make changes in an effort to adjust the public’s perception of licensed real estate agents.
I’ve heard several arguments for addressing changes in the legislature of each state. And while that would be a wonderful ideal world, it is just that – a Utopia. My best example is that within the state of Ohio, the Ohio Association of REALTORS® is the largest trade organization in the state and it has been working with ASHII and NAHI to require home inspectors to be licensed within the state. I’ve never heard a legislator say it is a bad idea or they don’t see the need. However this bill has never passed through the state legislature. If this logical bill can’t get passed, how are more stringent real estate licensure standards going to work? Continue reading »
By Brooke Wolford
So I recently had an issue in my office. My first ever dispute with another REALTOR®. I couldn’t believe that it would ever happen to me.
So here’s the story. A client came into the office and ended up meeting with another practitioner. A couple of days later, I ran into him (we went to high school together). He explained to me that he had come into the office and asked for me and he was given the impression that I didn’t work there anymore. Obviously, I was pretty upset. I decided to not worry about it and told him, “Good luck with buying a house.”
The next morning, he called and said he didn’t want to work with the other practitioner and that he really intended to use me.
I asked if he had a contract with the other practitioner, and he said that he did not. I asked him if he was really sure about it, and he said, “yes.” So we went out to look at some homes. He found one that he liked and we went to put an offer in. When I called the loan officer, she stated that she had sent over a pre-approval letter earlier to this other practitioner in my office. Continue reading »
By Kelly Reark
This is a great idea for those in YPN, and all practitioners in general! Doesn’t it seem like you are always spending money on one thing or another? Board dues, electronic key dues, classes, license fees and office fees, on top of money spent to advertise, fix your laptop, buy the newest gadget and more. Forming your yearly budget is a key to success whether you have been in the business for 20 days or 20 years.
This year while you are creating your budget, consider taking the ABR (Accredited Buyer’s Representative) class offered through REBAC (Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council).
I took this course last year and I am so very glad that I did. It opened my eyes to many pitfalls and services that I was overlooking or not using to my full advantage. The course is one part to earning your ABR Designation, which also requires that you take a supplemental class and complete five transactions as a designated buyer’s agent. Not only is this course a wealth of useful information, but it will help you to reach that goal of representing five buyers through closed transaction! Plus you will have access to some great marketing tools and resources.
Check out www.rebac.net for more information.
Kelly Reark is a native Floridian and e-PRO REALTOR® with Gasparilla Properties, Inc. in Boca Grande, Southwest Florida. Visit her Web site: www.MyBocaGrandeAgent.com and her blog: KellyReark.blogspot.com.
By Dave Robison
How many times have your clients or friends asked you about your crystal ball? My clients ask me all the time. It’s almost daily you hear, “If I buy this house, how much do you think it will appreciate in the next 2 years, or 5 years?” or “How much more money will I make on my house if I wait a year to sell it?” Practitioners need a new core course to renew our licenses titled, “Gypsy 101,” or “Palm Reading 201.” Or you can just read this blog entry and you can become pretty good at being psychic. There are two parts in being psychic right now to know what is happening with the market: know how to price listings, and to know what to tell your clients.
First, you must follow the rules. In 2006 when the market was booming in Utah, there were numerous people that came to me and asked, “Should I buy this home? All I have to do is use my credit and flip it the next day.”
Many of you now are thinking, that’s common sense. But then it wasn’t. It was very enticing, someone’s friend just made $100,000 doing one flip supposedly. I asked 2 questions. Continue reading »
By Nobu Hata
Much has been made the last couple of weeks about two online “conversations” that permeated the real estate socialwebs. One, an “Open Letter to NAR President Vicki Cox Golder” regarding the disconnect between us REALTORS® and NAR Leadership. The other, the need for professional standards within our industry — the conversation raged among a handful of practitioners over the course of two weekends on Twitter, that continues today.
These issues are as old as the industry itself and the topical conversations are as inevitable as the sun rising, taxes and death. You can set a clock by it: pay NAR dues, see an ad you despise, whine (or blog) about it while letting loose a couple of “while I’m at it, let me tell you about something else I hate and what I’d do about it…,” get busy with the real estate thing, forget about it, rinse, and repeat in January the following year. I get it; writing/talking/venting about what irks you is almost like therapy, making that check you cut to NAR for their ad a bit easier to stomach. To tell you the truth, I was as jaded and cynical about these issues as well, but what could I do… right?
Thing is, these conversations, blogs – what have you – aren’t so one-sided anymore. Look no further than the reply to the aforementioned blog post by none other than NAR President Vicki Cox Golder herself. Me personally? I commented on the blog post trying to encourage involvement and thought nothing more of it. Later that week I served on a practitioner panel for REBAC requiring a visit to NAR headquarters. By the time I landed in Chicago I’d received the NAR perspective on both issues and a Presidential appointment to an NAR committee in hand. Apparently, Vicki Cox Golder is listening, reading, and absorbing what we have to say. What’s more: she wants us to get involved.
And getting involved we must. Let’s stop opining about the wrongs in our industry and start doing something to right it. There are 60+ forums/committees available to REALTORS® at the national level, countless more at the local level; which one are you on? All committee meetings and forums are open to the REALTOR® public during MidYear; which one will you stand and make yourself be heard at? (#RTB folks, Professional Standards Committee is meeting Thursday at MidYear, just saying.) On a national or local committee? Seek out like-minded thinkers, bring to the forefront the solutions we have, and discuss with the REALTOR®1.0 types. There’s power in numbers here, and besides, don’t you want to have meaningful debate among those outside your blogosphere?
Let’s stop the perpetual cycle of these conversations. Formulate a solution to the beef you have and Facebook Vicki on it… Facebook – Vicki. I’m still having a hard time saying that. Let’s stop talking “Us” versus “Them” and embrace “We.” No more armchair solutions. Do. Act. Try. NAR is a trade association, after all: by the members for the members, so do your part.
There is something different about this NAR president, and if she’s embracing her “On the Rise” concept for her year in office, the better. The industry is changing, bringing with it a lot of validity and credibility to what some of us are trying to say. Our voices are being heard. Let’s take advantage of that!
p.s. Vicki, if you’re reading this: I hate the new “Uncle Sam” ad. Most of us hate it. It’s failing to resonate with the majority of your members and the general public at large. Hit me up Facebook the next time you’re contemplating a TV ad, ok? Please?
Nobu Hata is a sales associate for Edina Realty in Minneapolis, and a founding member of the Minneapolis YPN group, the YoPros. Visit his Web site at www.nobuhata.com.
By Crystal Webster
At my former corporate job, “work/life balance” seemed to be the catch phrase of the month. I worked in a very demanding job (90+ hours a week most weeks demanding), but as long as the façade of work/life balance was there, it was all good.
Fast forward a few years to now; and I’m working for myself. Yes, the THOUGHT of work/life balance, and the illusion of work life balance is there. Theoretically, I could take off a day to, say, go to the beach – but honestly, how many of us actually take off a Tuesday because we want to spend the day in the park?
Several weeks ago I suffered some life changing and devastating news. Over the course of five days there were two strokes in the family, three close family deaths, and some personal health issues. Probably needless to say, at first, I was in a tailspin and really didn’t know which way was up. Now, I’ve been able to get my head above water and have been working…kind of. I’ve been doing what HAS to be done. I’ll ask myself “What MUST be done today?”– then I’ll do that, and really only that.
I don’t bring up my personal life so that you can feel sorry for me – please don’t, I am very blessed in so many ways. I brought this up to ask for your help: How do you handle yourself when you fall into “personal crisis mode?” What gets you moving again when all you want to do is sleep through the day? How do you pick yourself up off the floor and kick yourself in the butt again?
By Brooke Wolford
It’s a new year, a new decade. As I look back at the past year, I reflect on all of the hard times. As REALTORS®, we faced some of the most difficult challenges in 2009. The bad media coverage, constantly having to defend ourselves, and insults on TV shows like “Cougar Town” and “Modern Family.” (These shows both feature characters who are real estate practitioners… and honestly, these shows are hilarious.) But nonetheless, its been a tough year.
I have chosen to look back at 2009 and learn from the rough times and the mistakes I have made. All you can really do is try to learn from them. Also, try to consider the flawless transactions you had. In those cases, ask yourself, “What did you do right?”
The market is beginning to turn around, so now it’s our time to shine. It’s time to improve ourselves and make 2010 our best year ever! On days when things get me down, I always think, “Real estate makes the world go round.” I can say that I am so proud to be part of it!
Brooke Wolford is a REALTOR® with Edina Realty, Hastings, Minn. Follow her blog at strugglingrookierealtor.blogspot.com.