By Anand Patel
The invention of the DVR was a beautiful thing. According to ACNielson, the marketing research firm, by 2011 more than 40 percent of U.S. households had DVRs giving families the ability to breeze right over TV commercials and get right back into their favorite shows. Who wants to watch annoying commercials for products and services you have no interest in, right?
Just like fast forwarding television commercials we have no interest in watching, many residential agents pass up on perfect commercial real estate referral opportunities simply because they have no contact (or interest) with the commercial world. Instead of tapping an additional income source, they are skipping right over the commercial.
If you work exclusively as a residential sales agent, what do you do when your buyer, who just moved, to town asks you about commercial real estate because they want to open up a new business? Do you tell them you have no clue and wish them luck in their search? Or, do you have a basic understanding of the commercial market in your area and a great commercial REALTOR® you can refer them to?
In many markets, commercial real estate is picking up. Here in Tampa, Fla., we are seeing new businesses enter our market as they are in expansion mode. I have talked to several new entrepreneurs who are also looking to call Tampa home, as they are finding this to be prime time to make the move both personally and professionally. This scenario is playing out in many markets around the country.
This is a ripe opportunity for real estate professionals who only work in residential real estate to make referral income by partnering with a strong commercial agent. Here are some ideas:
- Attend introductory commercial real estate educational classes held at your local REALTOR® association. If they don’t offer any classes, now is a good time to encourage them to do so. Better yet, this may be an opportunity for your YPN group to offer a commercial 101 class, filling a void in your association’s current educational offerings.
- Attend networking events Continue reading »
By Dave Robison
What is the difference between a REALTOR® and a regular old Joe with a real estate license? Can anyone you’ve asked from the public answer that question correctly? Better yet, can all of the REALTORS® in your office answer that question? I feel like it was indoctrinated in me through continuing eduction classes. So, from what I’ve been taught, a REALTOR® is this: A REALTOR® is held to a higher standard because they’re a member of NAR and must follow the Code of Ethics.
Our MLS recently had WAVgroup.com do a survey on behalf of our members. Marilyn Wilson from the WAV Group spoke at a recent meeting about the research they discovered regarding our industry. First, she said that 99.9 percent of the public doesn’t know the difference between a REALTOR® and a regular old Joe real estate licensed agent.
What does that say about our strategy for educating people about what makes REALTORS different? It says that it doesn’t work. Our Code of Ethics is what we think makes us stand apart from other real estate agents. But if the public doesn’t know… then it’s not working.
So why is it not working? She exhorted that the level of service from one REALTOR® can be drastically different from another REALTOR®. This is actually the reason why I never considered joining a big brokerage… I didn’t want to be in a group where my level of service was drastically higher than the guy/gal with the same brokerage name on his or her name-tag. There’s no minimum level of service at the big brokerages, and the service level varies between agents.
As long as there isn’t a minimum standard of service, no one is going to know what sets us as REALTORS® apart from licensees. The public doesn’t even recognize us as a club. We will continue to remain commodities.
Do we want to be recognized differently? Is it a benefit to be viewed differently? With all of the REThinking this year, it seems to me there could be a good opportunity for REALTORS® to figure out what they want to happen on this topic. I’ll admit, I’m not really sure what REThink is thinking about. Most the people I talk to are confused about it as well. But as an association, if the very reason why we are different isn’t working, maybe we need to adjust our vision on what we are trying to achieve that makes us different?
How would you adjust it?
Dave Robison, known as “Utah Dave,” is a broker/owner of Robison & Company Real Estate.
By Maura Neill
If you’re looking for one more reason to attend the REALTORS® Conference and Expo next month in Orlando, check this out: You can take Day One of the newly-redesigned e-PRO® course for FREE.
The course is a $149 value, but you can get it for free, nada, nothing, no dinero…simply because you’re a YPN member. It’s that simple.
The course will be offered on Thursday, November 8 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Rosen Plaza Hotel in Orlando. After you complete Day One, you will need to register for and complete Day Two online in order to receive your e-PRO® certification. For more information and to register, visit www.epronar.com/ypn.cfm.
I’ll be co-teaching with Bill Lublin, one of the co-creators of the new e-PRO®. Bill and I are really looking forward to the opportunity to give you this education at no cost.
If you’re not already a member of your local YPN Network, click here for an interactive map that can help you to locate the network closest to you and put you in touch with them. Joining is free, too, so this is a no-brainer!
The course is by invitation only (consider this my personal invitation to you!) and spaces are filling up, so be sure you register to attend today! Hope to see you there!
Maura Neill is a second-generation REALTOR® and works with RE/MAX Around Atlanta. Maura can be found online through her blog, her websites www.BuySellLiveAtlanta.com and www.MauraNeill.com, or on Twitter @MauraNeill.
By Dolores Esanu
When I was 17, I walked into an up-and-coming real estate firm and asked for an internship. The firm consisted of a mother/daughter team. Initially, the mother hesitated at the thought of hiring a teenager with no work experience, however, the daughter gave me a chance. She went against the grain and the hesitations of her business partner and allowed me to step in. Her faith in me helped me flourish as a young adult and young professional, ultimately shaping who I am today.
My point? All it took was one person to stand up and take a risk. I didn’t ask her to be my mentor — she became one. From day one, her guidance and input influenced my decisions about my career, coworkers, and outside resources. After a year of interning, I was hired as an assistant. Her mentoring morphed into a whole different genre. She started helping influence my assertiveness, people management skills, and taught me the importance of multitasking in real estate. Eight years later, I am now licensed and her mentoring still comes into play. I find myself marching into her office asking for her advice on advertising, guidance on handling difficult clients, and even everyday things such as closing gift ideas.
Do you have a mentor you can rely on in real estate? That solid rock of foundation in your life who can give you an answer — and not just any answer — but an answer full of experience, knowledge, and consideration? They may not always say what you want to hear, but at the end of the day, what you need to hear will benefit you more. I firmly believe that as a new agent or a new assistant, a mentor is a necessity. They keep us motivated, grounded, and most of all, on the right track to success.
By Anand Patel
With conference season in full swing, I have met many new and seasoned real estate professionals debating if conferences are worth attending at all. For newer agents—the conference virgins—they look at the cost and automatically dismiss the events as too expensive to even consider. Some seasoned agents—those that have gotten rusty at it—are “too busy” to waste time at a conference. Is it worth attending conferences, events, and seminars? It all depends on your mindset going into it.
From my experience I have found that, in general, I learn more from fellow attendees than from those speaking on stage. This only happens if you make it a point to meet new people, share ideas with others, pick up tips from them, and then go home and IMPLEMENT something you learned. If you go in with an open mind and a clear intent on learning and sharing, you will find value in attending conferences. You may have heard the quote that “each person we encounter is a teacher,” well that rings true for those you encounter at conferences. Keep an open mind, filter out the bad traits and learn from the good you find in fellow attendees.
I just got back from our Florida REALTORS® Conference and can tell you I made some wonderful new connections (and referral opportunities) that will continue long after the conference ends as long as I work to foster those relationships. If I don’t keep in touch, then yes, it will have all been a waste of time. If I don’t implement anything new I learned, then yes, it was a waste of money. It’s all up to me to make it worthwhile.
Are you a conference virgin? If so, here are some tips for your first time (or if you are getting back into it): Continue reading »
By Hilary Hale Brown
One of the most fulfilling experiences a group can grow from is that of reaching its goals. In January of this calendar year, myself, the administrative executive of our board of REALTORS®, and members of the YPN committee set our promises to paper. These ranged from things such as a build for Habitat of Humanity in April for Fair Housing Month, to hosting a social mixer in November to honor TRLP graduates (Texas REALTOR® Leadership Program), to holding meetings once a quarter and participating in National YPN conference calls to stay in touch with our fellow chapters on a national level.
Tomorrow morning at a meeting with our board president and fellow committee chairmen, I will be proud to report that we have achieved over half of the goals set in January and are on target to meet the remaining goals by November.
As young real estate professionals, I believe it is important to remember what we are striving for and what we are setting out to accomplish. While social media and Internet marketing might be the driving force behind leads, they are not our goal, which is clients. While social mixers are an introduction to other young professionals, they are not our goal, which is education. My committee this year has been unrelenting in being result-based as our calendar filled, and I thank them for helping me remember that as I prepare for my meeting tomorrow. They remind me it is about quality not quantity, and that everything we do should have a purpose beyond ourselves and I thank them for this as well. Continue reading »
By Anand Patel
We’ve all been there before: You’re at an important meeting and asked a question that you just can’t seem to formulate the perfect answer to on the spot. But, 30 minutes later, on your way home as you replay the meeting in your mind you come up with numerous things you wish you had said earlier. Now you are kicking yourself thinking, “Why didn’t I say that!?”
What if I told you there is a very inexpensive way to help you develop the skill to think on your feet along with improving your overall communication and leadership skills?
One of the single most important organizations I got involved with a few years ago is my local Toastmasters club. Toastmasters provides a friendly, encouraging environment that helps individuals improve their speaking and leadership skills regardless of their current level – amateur speaker to orator, mail-room clerk to CEO (my club consists of entrepreneurs, professors, artists, IT professionals, military personnel, students and many others). It is a workshop type setting where you learn-by-DOING. If you want to learn more about the history of Toastmasters or how to join, you can visit www.toastmasters.org; but in this post, I want to briefly share with you four ways you will immensely benefit from joining and participating in a local club.
Learning to speak “off the cuff”
One of the most beneficial parts of a Toastmasters meeting is the “Table Topics” section. This is where you are called upon to speak for 1-2 minutes on a topic that someone has just told you about. You have to quickly formulate your ideas in your head and speak “off the cuff.” There are numerous benefits in developing this skill for real estate professionals – from improving your negotiating skills to handling seller objections on a listing presentation.
Developing leadership skills Continue reading »
REALTOR® University launched its first Master of Real Estate course, Real Estate Law (RE520), on February 27. The Master of Real Estate curriculum emphasizes the practical skills and concepts the real estate industry demands from real estate professionals and blends theory with real-world applications. Even if you missed the first class, four eight-week sessions remain in 2012. The next session begins April 30.
Sign up now and save! The first 40 students in the Master of Real Estate program this year will receive a $2,500 grant for being part of the charter class. This will be distributed as $500 per course for the student’s first five classes. Want to learn more? Call 855-786-6546 (RUONLINE) or visit RealtorU.com.
By Brett Caviness
From the first year I got my license as a college student, I knew I wanted to be involved in the real estate business as much as possible. I started by attending the Iowa REALTORS® Legislative Bus-in where I quickly realized the power we as individuals have to take part in the political landscape that is our real estate industry. Real estate took a bit of a back seat while I finished my degree. As I made my way back home to another market, I again jumped in full-force as an active member of the Iowa Great Lakes Board of REALTORS®. After less than a year in my current market, I was elected secretary/treasury of our board. Since taking office, I have been involved in many programs and organizations.
During my first trip to state meetings this past winter, I was immersed into the exciting culture of passionate real estate professionals from across the state who take an active role in their profession at the state and sometimes national level. I quickly realized that we do have the power to interact, develop ideas, and implement strategies that affect not only our business, but the real estate industry for buyers and sellers.
After the energizing sessions we attended at the state level, I found myself asking, “Why doesn’t everyone want to attend these meetings? If nothing else, why don’t more brokers attend to take back this valuable knowledge and experience to their agents?” The president of our board responded quickly, “There are givers and there are takers.” Continue reading »