How to Increase Your Commissions As a Real Estate Agent

There are, in essence, four ways to increase your responsibilities – sell more, sell at higher prices, raise your fees, and change your agency. We'll look at each of them in more detail next. Sell ​​more units . This is probably the most obvious way to increase missions, but it can be hard, too. The…

There are, in essence, four ways to increase your responsibilities – sell more, sell at higher prices, raise your fees, and change your agency. We'll look at each of them in more detail next.

Sell ​​more units . This is probably the most obvious way to increase missions, but it can be hard, too. The last few years have been very rough on the real estate industry. The good news is – most of the markets in the US are rebounding, with the exception of the Northeast. That will make increasing the number of units you sell easier, although it may mean that you have to relocate.

This may mean you will have to take away sales from another agency. Trying to do this without creating harsh feelings with your peers is going to be difficult. You will also have to do your research on which micromarkets in your area are not being met by someone else. There is where you can find your niche.

Some questions to consider – Do you want to sell more units next to each other? Or are you going to go for a whole market? The answers to these can help guide you in your decision making process.

Sell ​​each unit at a higher price. This is one that is easier said than done. Finding the right market to sell in to be able to increase the selling price is tricky. Agents who are already in these markets tend to be entrenched, so breaking in requires some planning. Their customer bases are loyal, and these agents know the area.

Be strategic when you decide on your market. Look for ones that have homes in the price range you have decided you want to sell. You should study your competition to see what they do, what is successful, and what you see could be done differently.

Raise your fees on each sale. While this will surely get you more in agreements, it can also price you out of the market. Be very careful if you choose this method, and be confident that your clients are willing to pay the higher fees.

Change your agency to one that lets you keep more of your responsibilities. Some agencies allow you to keep more of your responsibilities, while others ask that you split your responsibilities. Some charge as much as 50%, so find out up front before joining an agency what its take is.

No matter what method you choose, you will need to set your goals, and focus on your goals with each step on your list. Your goals will also help you with forming your plan to get to them. Like most plans, be sure you have a specific timeline on it. Do you want to earn more right away, or are you patient? Can you let your business build slowly?

Do not be afraid to change your plan as you go, too. The world is unpredictable, and the market will fluctuate. Successful people know how to change and adapt to those evolving market conditions.

How to Fire Your Real Estate Agent

No one likes to think about it, but sometimes you have to. Sometimes your real estate agent has to be let go. Your personalities might clash. Your goals might be too different. He or she might not be listening to your wishes and needs the way you want. Your agent may not reply to you…

No one likes to think about it, but sometimes you have to. Sometimes your real estate agent has to be let go. Your personalities might clash. Your goals might be too different. He or she might not be listening to your wishes and needs the way you want. Your agent may not reply to you when you call or send an e-mail. Whatever your reason, you have to do it. Here are some things to keep in mind when you have to fire your real estate agent.

It's not as easy as just calling up and telling them you have decided to do something different. There are typically contracts that have been drawn up, and they are legally binding, in most cases. You have to be aware of them and what your state's laws are regarding their termination.

Before trying to find out what your state's regulations are, you need to talk to your agent. Make sure you both understand that this is the end. You need to be sure that your agent will sign the release forms when they are presented. There is also a form in most states called the termination of buyer agency that you will need to fill out.

You will also need to ask your agent to cancel your sales listing. If he or she will not do it, talk to the agency or ask that your agent transfer your file to another agent in the office. Knowing how quickly information and reviews can spread on the internet, your agent will probably go ahead and cancel the listing. Bad publicity can be devastating, and most agents will want to avoid it at all costs.

Be aware that even though the contract is terminated, you may still owe fees for services rendered to that point. It's only fair – they did do work on your behalf. They searched the area, visited your property, took photos, etc.

Since this process is not simple or quick, and it could be costly, be sure you have reached a point of no return with your agent. The time delays, particularly if you are trying to sell, can be very expensive. Your schedule may be completely altered, and this might impact your ability to move. If you were transferring to a new city for work, you might even have issues with the new job.

When all of your options have failed, and you just can not reach any sort of agreement, there is one more option. There are attorneys who specialize in real estate law who you can hire to assist you. They will know the paperwork needed to release the contract, and be able to guide you through the process. Just remember – attorneys usually do not work for free, so this will be an additional cost to you.

Once everything is done, it's time to find a new agent. Be sure you vet them thoroughly – there are often associations you can contact that will give referrals, or you can read online reviews. You may be able to explain to them where you were in the process and speed things up. Have your documentation from inspections ready, so they do not have to be done again.

Best of luck to you, and here's wishing for a speedy sale!

The Goals of a Real Estate Agent

You decided to follow a dream and get into selling real estate. As you're starting out, you might feel a bit bewildered. You can help with this feeling by stopping and writing out some goals – long term and short term, both. There might even be daily goals you set for yourself. If you are…

You decided to follow a dream and get into selling real estate. As you're starting out, you might feel a bit bewildered. You can help with this feeling by stopping and writing out some goals – long term and short term, both. There might even be daily goals you set for yourself.

If you are already in real estate, start your goal setting session by looking at your current status. Estimate your income per property by averaging your sales last year. Going back any farther will skew your results since the market was so soft still.

Decide how much income you want to derive from your sales – do you want to take vacations and travel? Are you saving for college for your children? Or do you want to retire early? Maybe you just want to make a good living. Regardless of your choice, let that be your guide.

You will want to compare your dream income level to your actual income per property you calculated. If they are fairly close, your goal-setting session will be more about clearing what you do. If you are far apart, or you are just getting started, your plan will be more detailed. You'll need to include defining your market, finding your customers, and calculating your commission rate.

If you are not learning enough, you can work on selling more, or selling more expensive homes. Once you work up to the expensive homes, you can list fewer homes and still make a good income.

Particularly when you are new to the field, you will want to know both your strengths and your weaknesses. They could have personality aspects, or it could be you need to upgrade your technology. Maybe your marketing strategy needs retooling. Or, you need to get out and do some networking at community events. Remember – not every contact will be a sale.

There are some great books out there on how to find your strengths and leverage them to your best advantage. It helps to go back to them and do reviews from time to time. As we go through life, our focuses shift, and learning how to adapt and go with the flow helps us maximize our effectiveness.

Be sure you check in with your plan periodically to check your progress. Do not be afraid to make changes to your plan. The market might change, or you might acquire a business partner. Those can radically change your business plan. You might find that you feel like you are keeping, so it's time to set new goals and raise the bar.

You did write down your goals, right? It will make the review process much easier to take out the page of goals and review it. Goals are not a time capsule, meant to be created then put away for 30 years. Goals are active. They should also be based around those factors you have control over. Trying to set goals based on a projection that the employment figures will suddenly improve will only lead to frustration.

No matter where you are in the real estate world – a rookie or a season veteran, you can benefit from a goal-setting session. Take the time and do this for yourself, you'll be glad you did.

How to Become Rich in Real Estate

You've heard about the people who got rich thanks to real estate – Donald Trump, Warren Buffett, and other billionaires. But how can you get in on the rebounding real estate market and get your share of the riches? 1. Start off by setting some goals – how much do you want to earn? How…

You've heard about the people who got rich thanks to real estate – Donald Trump, Warren Buffett, and other billionaires. But how can you get in on the rebounding real estate market and get your share of the riches?

1. Start off by setting some goals – how much do you want to earn? How long are you willing to stay in the market? How much do you know about real estate and how much more do you need to learn?

Educating yourself on how the real estate market works and how your local market works will pay off in the end. You should also evaluate whether you want to manage the property / ties yourself, or if you would rather a property manager does it for you. This will also require some research to find the right company. Your property manager can find you good tenants who will pay rent reliably, and then provide you steady income.

2. Decide how much risk you want to take – do you want to buy and keep the house for rental income? Will you hold it a while and sell later because you expect the market to improve? Do you want to buy and flip?

If you want to be a flipper, be aware that “hot tips” may turn out to be bad deals. It really pays to do your own research. Tips that come from real estate brokers and agents will be more reliable, especially if you tell them specifically what you are looking for. They can help you find motivated sellers that might end up saving you thousands.

3. When you search an area and find a property that is listed for far less than the surrounding homes, it pays to do your due diligence to find out why. If there is a lot of work to have to do to make it a desirable sale, it's probably not worth your time. Flip should be done on homes that just need some paint and other quick work. That being said, troubled properties can go for cheap, so you might still recoup your costs.

4. The art of negotiation is important for any real estate deal. Look for homes where the seller needs to close quickly. He or she might be willing to come down on the price just to be done. You may also be able to negotiate that furniture is included if you are looking for a rental. Your home will be able to be quickly turned for rental income, and you just saved thousands on furniture.

5. No matter why you want to buy a home, you have to get it inspected. There may be hidden insect damage in the basement, or water damage in the attic. It's not a knock on the homeowner – he may not have known. It can cost you dear if you do not get the house inspected.

6. If you go the rental route, be sure to keep track of all of your expenses, and utilize resources that can help you maximize profitability. Locating ways to reduce expenses may take some up front money, but they will pay off in the end. It's part of your risk aversion profile.

It might also pay if you are in a vacation market to look at peak-season and off-season pricing. You'll make more overall, and you also provide an incentive to renters that can give you year-round income.

Here's hoping you have every success in the real estate market. It's a great time to buy and a great time to invest again. Cheers!

Thriving Market for Residential Flats in Mumbai

If you have been nurturing the dream of owning a residential flat in Mumbai, 2014 has brought good news for property buyers. According to real estate experts, this will be a good year for investors as buying a property in 'metros', especially Mumbai will be easier with softening of rates. As far as real estate…

If you have been nurturing the dream of owning a residential flat in Mumbai, 2014 has brought good news for property buyers. According to real estate experts, this will be a good year for investors as buying a property in 'metros', especially Mumbai will be easier with softening of rates.

As far as real estate price correction is concerned, India's financial capital has remained unscathed. Real estate rates have not come down in Mumbai even though inventory is piling and demand has reduced. If experts are to be believed, rates will reduce so, if you have been sitting on money for a long time, the thriving real estate market in Mumbai will certainly convince you to take the plunge.

Finding Affordable yet Stylish Options in Mumbai:

There is no doubt that Mumbai is the financial capital, a city that generates job opportunities due to which land values ​​shoot up. However, irrespective of the high rates in some posh areas, investors can find several property options in other areas of Mumbai. South Mumbai to Ulwe in Navi Mumbai, real estate experts have been favoring these regions a lot for investment.

For buyers who have been looking for affordable yet stylish residential flats in Mumbai, Ulwe might be a good option as property rates in this region is expected to double in 3 years time. Even Wadala and Chembur will offer good returns as property rates in these two regions will also double in next three to four years. According to reputed property consultancy firms, Lower Parel and Bandra Kurla Complex are also top two destinations where investors should look for houses or flats.

Market Conditions for Mumbai Property Buyers:

The property market in Mumbai remained subdued in 2012. Property rates grew by 2-7%; however, demand picked up in 2013, especially in the mid-end segment. And now in 2014, property market in Mumbai is adjusting slowly to new project launches.

Rates are going down slowly for instance, property rates in Central Mumbai locations like Mahalaxmi, Lower Parel and Parel have gone down by 10% over previous three quarters. Whereas rates in Thane, Navi Mumbai have remained somewhat stable if not increased a lot.

As per Knight Frank, a real estate consultancy, inventory level is rising and rates are decreasing in Mumbai and buyers should start taking advantage of the same. Due to increasing number of unsold homes and reluctance of buyers to exceed their budget, Mumbai's property market looks to be turning in favor of buyers.

Buyers are rejoicing as real estate developers have been open to price negotiations for premium properties. they are ready to bring down rates up to 25% for a izeable upfront payment.

So, if you have had plans to own a dream home in Mumbai, now might be the right time to enter this market. Just make sure you do some research based on your budget and requirements and choose a reputed property developer because one wrong choice can turn your investment into a nightmare.

Is Your Agent Actually Awake?

I'm speaking to agents now … THROW the training manuals in the bin & get out in the real world! Who invented this stuff. The world is moving so fast, these manuals CAN NOT & DO NOT keep up with the reality in selling & current markets. They are a guideline only! Try something new.…

I'm speaking to agents now … THROW the training manuals in the bin & get out in the real world! Who invented this stuff. The world is moving so fast, these manuals CAN NOT & DO NOT keep up with the reality in selling & current markets. They are a guideline only! Try something new. HELP your clients realize what they need by thinking differently. STOP selling auction methods in markets where auctions do not thrive in, meaning they are not in favor of your vendor only the buyer. Stop jamming vendor paid advertising down your clients throat as the first option, because that's the only method you understand & have been taught. Each sale needs to be individually assessed.

We are in a buyers market! Creative real estate comes into play in a buyers market, because YOU need to come up with something unique now to help your clients sell at a price they will be happy with. In a market flooded with sellers that NEED to sell and savvy buyers who have searched the market well, who have a clear and defined idea of ​​what it is that they want to buy, how are you going to put your sellers interests first?

To the vendors – One powerful indicator of a buyers market, is when you drive around a suburb and you see several agents signs on each property. This often happens if a property needs to be sold quickly. The vendor believes that the more agents they engage to work on their property the faster it will sell. This in reality, has the opposite effect. Agents engaged to work on open listed properties, prioritize these listings after their exclusive property listings & therefore have less time to promote the sale of the open listed property.

The properties that are managed by a professional real estate agent exclusively, are presented at a high standard to the market and their one sign stands proud like a queens guard protecting their kingdom.

Why is a property presented so differently when using a professional exclusive agent? The vendors are working with their agent. Meaning, the agent has spent the time with their clients to explain how they came to the conclusion of what the property should be listed for and how and why it needs to be presented a particular way.

The agent is fully aware of the margin the client will move on the property and the client is confident their agent is not going to distribute this price to potential buyers, so that the highest price is always the agents prime focus & achieved. There is something unique going on between vendor and agent in this situation. They have formed a relationship based on TRUST.

The agent has earned the trust of the vendors. Think about what I have just said and what it could mean …

Properties which have multiple signs, equating to multiple agents listing the same property, stand along each other, giving the opinion to a passer by, that there is a war going on.

Unfortunately choosing your exclusive agent is not always clear sailing. Please spend time with your agent & focus on their response to your questions, ask many. Safe guard yourself by adding to your listing form that if you are not happy at any time with your agents service, a notice in writing will be sufficient for you to be released from their exclusive period. If an agent reacts badly to this request, then they are not your agent.

Shark

Sharks come in many forms for the vulnerable vendor. My suggestion, is to learn to recognize them coming … Sharks are, agents who tell you what you want to hear in regards to price until they WIN YOUR listing. Be very careful of these guys, people who lie to you once, will lie to you again.

I know how hard it is to hear what your property is worth in a buyer's market. Remember, a real estate agents initial job is to deliver information. We compare & report to you what is happening in the current market place, so you can be well informed before you make a decision on selling. Please believe me when I tell you, that a good agent, hates with a passion to tell a family that their home is going to sell under what it would cost to replace it in the current market.

If you are a seller, then by now I am probably making you feel pretty average. The following question has probably just begun to plague your mind with uneasiness …

WHAT AM GOING TO DO?

Find a creative agent, is the answer.

Brain

Before you throw your hands in the air and feel as though what I am telling you is all “DOOM and GLOOM”, let's recap on where we are to date … we have a market full of qualified buyers, with motivated vendors of whom some are to the point, desperate to sell. This is not a marketing ploy as some might question, but in fact a serious situation due to a lot of reasons. Economy, loss of work from the previous environmental disasters, all sorts of things. I mean, you just have to look around, speak to your family, friends and neighbors to see the reality of why the market is doing what it is doing.

Let's use Bundaberg as an example. Think about some of the major players who have waged war on our market. A dwindling overseas economy (out of our hands), a drought, that for the first time in a long time actually was felt significantly right through to the coast and major metropolitan areas (environmental and out of our hands), the Bundy floods (natural disaster, we were not stopping this one).

In true Australian form, we have picked ourselves up and dusted ourselves off. But after being knocked over and getting back up a few times, we are all feeling it.

So what to do, what to do? Introduce – Creative Real Estate. Savvy agents who have had their own investment properties, who have had their own homes, who have had their own businesses. Who work along side you and trusted qualified advisors to find a solution on selling your property at the highest price in the current market, or to provide an alternative path until it does sell.

People who will look at the entire situation and not just the sale of the house. You can not buy knowledge. Doing a few courses or even a university degree, does not make you a good agent. A good agent has life skills, can match your situation to someone similar, that had a positive exit and discuss and talk about options. In this market, you need a creative out of the box thinker, who on a daily basis surrounds them with opportunities for their clients. Ask your agent who are the people they speak to daily ?? BESIDES the clients they are working with.

Here's my list and see how they compare –

Builders
Insurance Brokers
Financial Planners
Town Planners
The council in various forms
Insurance brokers and banking contacts
Other agents who are like minded
Business owners
Solicitors
Pest & building inspectors
Certifiers

Talk to your agent! One conversation should tell you if they have your best interest as a vendor at heart, especially in the current market favored by buyers. Honesty is the key to a successful relationship & most importantly a sale & output you are happy with!

How to Write an Offer on a Probate Home

In my Probate Real Estate business I do several things. I find probate homes to sell investors who want to flip, Investors who want to hold (rentals) and to end user buyers who are looking for a home to move into. I do this usually off the MLS Grid and I'm the only agent who…

In my Probate Real Estate business I do several things. I find probate homes to sell investors who want to flip, Investors who want to hold (rentals) and to end user buyers who are looking for a home to move into. I do this usually off the MLS Grid and I'm the only agent who even knows the Probate was available to purchase. This has been big for my production over the last 20+ years and I love teaching other agents how to do the same if they have interest.

If you are going to write an offer use Win Forms for CA property or whatever probate contract form your State uses. You may be in a State which does not require a particular Probate Deposit Receipt so just use your normal one. In Calif, with Win Forms most real estate agents use there is a specific probate deposit receipt to use. This offer form will be for the most part the same as you would use on any house but there will be a few things different which you must do.

  1. You will be asked for the Petitioner / Executor Name: This is the person you are dealing with who has or will have (Letters of Testamentary), the authority to sign the contract and make it binding. They would need to be approved as Executor or Administrator by the court then you are good to go. If they are not when you submit your offer have a subject too in the addendum that the offer is “Subject To” the petitioner being approved as Executor before escrow can close. Title will not take the petitioners name for the grant deed without this approval plus the Letters of Testamentary which is the court authority for the Executor to sign the grant deed to the new buyer.
  2. You will be asked to provide the Probate Court Case #. This is found on the Notice to Administer the Estate. If you are accessing the file online it will be referenced before you actually get to the paperwork. If you go directly to the court house file room you should have this case # on your Probate Tracking Sheet which you first reviewed the file. If not ask the file room clerk to look up the file by the decease name or check the filings yourself via the court computer.
  3. The Probate Contract will ask if the sale will be going through court confirmation, no confirmation or you do not know yet. There will be a box to check for each of the 3 ways. I always check no court confirmation and then sort it out later. Remember selling a Probate Home via the Independent Administration of Estates Act is the easiest and fastest way to a closing.
  4. You will be asked when the notice of Proposed Action be filed: This NOPA is the notice to the heirs the Executor is selling the probate home and there will be no court confirmation process. The heir will have 15 days plus 5 delivery to agree or oppose in writing. If they agree no worries and we go to closing. If they oppose (object) then we have to stop everything on the sale and go to court to sort it all out. Your title company will want the NOPA as well to close so what I do is as follows.

  • First I ask the estate attorney to have NOPA waivers sign by the heirs as they most likely will know what is going on with the offer and we can save the two weeks.
  • If we have to use the NOPA then I wait until we have had our inspections and there are no issues to work out then we order the NOPA, wait the 20 days and then close. If you do this right you should be still able to close in 40-45 days with using the NOPA or 30 days or less if Waivers of the NOPA The remaining probate contract will be the basically the same as our CAR so I hope this helps you think about adding Probate Agent to your business card.

The Hidden Expenses Of Buying And Selling A Home

I. Hidden Cost When Buying Property There are numerous expenses associated in the buying process of a home. There are expenses or cost that you already expect and there some that you probably have not considered. To save you from any cost related surprises, I've created a list of things you may want to consider…

I. Hidden Cost When Buying Property

There are numerous expenses associated in the buying process of a home. There are expenses or cost that you already expect and there some that you probably have not considered. To save you from any cost related surprises, I've created a list of things you may want to consider when setting out your budget for home buying.

1. Stamp Duty

Stamp Duty is a tax imposed to most home buyers, so you need to include it in your budget. You are required to pay this if you are dealing with properties including commercial, residential and retail.

Although, stamp duty on mortgages does not exist anymore, you need to pay the government when you register your mortgage. The amount you will pay depends on the state and territory you stay. If it is your first time to buy or build a home, you may qualify for some stamp duty concessions.

2. Pest Inspections

Getting pest inspection services before purchasing a property can help you avoid paying huge repair expenses in the future. Pest inspection can cost between $ 200 and $ 400, depending on the size of the property. Mention this to your legal rep if you want them to organize the inspection on your behalf.

3. Building Inspection

A building inspection is usually recommended by your solicitor or conveyancer. The result of the inspection will give you a complete idea about the state of the property you plan to purchase. Qualified building inspectors are skilled in spotting problems or issues that are usually overlooked such as structural defects, electrical or plumbing issues, asbestos, ventilation or damp problems and many other hidden problems.

4. Legal Cost

You may need to employ a solicitor / conveyance to manage all paperwork essential when buying a property. A conveyancer can help legally transfer ownership of the property you are selling or buying as well as help you determine if the seller is legally entitled to sell the property. If you decided to move to a strata property then your legal rep can arrange the inspection and data gathering. For these services, expect to pay between $ 800 and $ 1200.

5. Insurance

Lenders Mortgage Insurance – This is an insurance policy that covers you, as a lender, for the amount of the loan provided to you. You will need to pay for this if you borrowed more than 80% of the property's purchase price. As a borrower, you pay this as a once off premium to cover risks of you defaulting on your loan. The cost will depend on the amount you borrowed and the cost of the property.

Mortgage Protection Insurance – You can choose to acquire this insurance policy if you want to be covered for mortgage repayments if ever you get ill or injured.

Content Insurance – You can choose to acquire this if you want to cover the included fixtures and fittings.

6. Moving costs

This is one of the most neglected costs when buying a home. The cost of hiring a truck is somewhere between $ 100 and $ 300. You can save money by asking a couple of friends or relatives to help out in the move rather than hiring and paying for movers. Give yourself enough time researching, checking and hiring a truck. Identify your budget and additional costs.

If manpower is a problem for you, you can hire a removalist. An independent removalist is cheaper compared to hiring a major removalist company as this one-man-operator may not charge for insurance cost. In the end, the cost will depend on the number of belongings you need to move.

7. Connection Of Utilities

Include in your budget the cost connecting your phone, electricity, gas and other essential utilities. Arrange early so you can determine how much you need to spend and when each utility needs to be paid.

If ever you do not have accounts with the utility companies, you can ask if they offer a bond to be paid. Each can cost a few hundred dollars and even without this bond, a connection fee applications to each utility amounting to $ 60 to $ 100.

Buying a home is among the biggest decisions you will ever encounter. It can be scary but the fear should not prevent you from acquiring your ideal home.

II. Hidden Cost When Selling Property

Although, you may already have expectations of the expenses associated with home selling, you may still be worried about other expenses you have overlooked. Here is a list of expenses you may want to consider to save yourself from unwanted surprises.

1. Building Inspection

As a seller, it is good to get the property you are selling inspected before accepting any visits. Most home buyers will get building inspectors to examine your property and it is good that you are able to spot any issues as well as do the necessary repairs on your property prior to visits from buyers and their inspectors. Get a qualified building inspector to spot issues such as structural defects, electrical or plumbing issues, asbestos, ventilation or damp problems and many other hidden problems.

2. Repairs

Having a budget for repairs is vital for both sellers and buyers. If you are a seller, you should prioritize repairing parts in the house with high visual impact. Limit or avoid spending a lot of your budget on low impact items such as light switch change, painting, lounge dimmers, new carpeting etc. As a seller, it is important not to get carried away with repair expenses especially because some small repairs can easily turn into thousands of dollars. After repairing items with high visual impact, you can repair hidden structural defects, electrical or plumbing issues, asbestos, ventilation or damp problems, etc.

3. Real Estate Agent's Fees

If you plan to hire a real estate agent to help you in the home buying or selling process, then expect to pay the agent's commission cost. If you are a buyer dealing with a seller or the seller's agent, you do not have to worry about the commission fee as it is usually charged to the vendor.

4. Marketing

If you plan to sell your home by yourself then you should set an a budget for marketing expense. The total selling costs may include expenses for internet and flyer advertisements, signboard, floor plan drawings, copywriting, photos, newspaper and magazine classifieds. The total expense can reach $ 5000 or more.

5. Styling

Styling is also an important expense to consider before selling your home. You can do it yourself or hire a professional to do it, either way; this can help enhance your home's selling price.

Set aside a budget needed to make your home look cleaner and spacious. Aside from money, you need to allocate time to sort through your things and throw or packed things that are not needed. You can choose to hire someone to do the packing, lifting, storing or throwing of the nonessential belongings for you.

You can also have a garage sale so you can free yourself from your unneeded marriages and make some money at the same time.

When selling your home, it all comes down to clear thinking and accurate calculations so the cost of selling does not consume a large portion of your hard-earned capital.

What Is Coming Up in 2014?

In my articles I try to stay away from politics and opinions and provide you with information to make your own decisions. I realize that what works for one person, does not always work for another and I respect everyone's right to their own opinion. However, my industry is real estate, helping people buy and…

In my articles I try to stay away from politics and opinions and provide you with information to make your own decisions. I realize that what works for one person, does not always work for another and I respect everyone's right to their own opinion.

However, my industry is real estate, helping people buy and sell homes is not only my career but my bread and butter and I do see changes on the horizon that will affect my business.

Some of you may be aware that in 2010 President Obama signed a law called the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. This was passed into law in response to the financial crisis and recession of 2008.

Real Estate in our area was hard hit with foreclosures, people losing their homes, values ​​dropping dramatically. Many people are still struggling to catch up and are hiring that values ​​keep rising as they are still underwater on their mortgage. Blame was passed around like good wine. Whose fault was this mess? Was it the consumers who overspent and did not read the fine print and made poor decisions who was the mortgage industry who would give anyone a loan if they had a ruling who was not governed the lenders and contributed to the downfall of the economy by looking the other way? We will all have our opinions depending on how we were impacted.

Dodd-Frank is very lengthy and complex law that has taken a long time to enforce and is still a work in progress. I can not even begin to prepare to understand this law. I understand it's over 800 pages long so I have to wonder if anyone has read it in its entity? However, its impact has already been felt in the real estate industry as there are many more hoops buyers must jump through to get a loan and fewer buyers can qualify for loans.

Next year we expect many more revisions to take place in order to attend to this law. The Dodd-Frank Law focuses on regulation and oversight of many areas of the financial and mortgage industry and will be putting the burden on Mortgage Companies to insure that all companies (Real Estate, Title, Loan, appraisers, notaries, escrow) involved in a real estate transaction are properly regulated, licensed and following the mandated guidelines. That sounds pretty easy to accomplish as we already have a lot of rules and regulations we follow right? Yes, we have a ton of rules and regulations and ethics we adhere to. So why would further regulation make it any more difficult?

Imagine that you live by yourself in your own home, although you follow the laws of the land, you have your own values, your own guidelines or rules that you and your family follow. All of a sudden the King comes in and says that your neighbor is now in charge of your household and the neighbor will have the final say so over the rules. The neighborhood will be checking that your children are really your children and providing a curve for your family to follow, you will also need to change your daily routine to better fit into your neighbor's ideals. Obviously things will change and while they are changing there will be dissention and perhaps a bit of chaos. In fact, some of the village may decide just to move in together because it will make regulating each other a little easier. Some villagers will simply give up. Those villagers who do not want to share homes may find it harder to survive. Everything changes, everything slows down. People will be affected, home sales will be impacted, values ​​will be impacted, jobs will be impacted.

Yes, the system was broken, will this ACT fix it? In five years we can look back and assess its success or failure but for now brace yourself for change and be cautious when forecasting the future of the local market as there are hidden pitfalls awaiting our market in 2014.

Common Misconceptions About Realtors

– The best agent is the one with the most experience. Let's face it, residential real estate is not rocket science and it does not take that long to master. It may be that a sharp and motivated agent with only two years experience is better for you than an agent with 20 years of…

– The best agent is the one with the most experience.

Let's face it, residential real estate is not rocket science and it does not take that long to master. It may be that a sharp and motivated agent with only two years experience is better for you than an agent with 20 years of experience who is tired and so set in their ways that they do not take advantage of the latest technology.

– The best agent is the one with the most listings.

Some agents specialize in representing buyers so they do not have that many listings. The agent with the most listings typically has a team of agents working for him and all the listings going in his name. Most likely if you work with him, you will not get too much of his time and most of the work will be done by members of his team.

– Agents receive kickbacks or bonuses from the lender, title company, inspectors, or other services that they recommend to their clients.

This is illegal under federal law, RESPA: the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. Aside from ethical considerations, it is simply not worth the risk of losing the real estate license and paying $ 10,000 or more in fines. We do not get the sale closed (and our commission) if the deals falls through because of mistakes or delays by the lender or a title company, so we like to recommend people with what we have had good experience in the past. By all means do your own research but do not red flag a service provider recommended by your agent because you think there is something shady going on.

– Agents charge buyers a fee.

Occidentally an agent will pass the transaction fee that his broker charges him for processing the sale onto his client. This is something that is negotiable between you and your agent. However, this is not a standard practice and generally buyers do not pay anything for the services of their agent. The usual way the buyer's agent gets paid is by receiving half of the seller agent's commission, which is paid by the seller. Buyers have very little reason not to use a Realtor to guide them through the process.

– I am better off selling my house on my own.

While it is possible to do this, the statistics say that 90% of the people who attempt to do this end up using a Realtor in the end – after spending a few months waiting for buyers who never come. By then they may have paid more in mortgage payments than it would have cost them to use a Realtor in the first place.

– Agents do not help me pick an area with good schools or low crime rate etc.

The reason for this is that recommending a neighborhood or school as better or more suitable for the client than another may actually be illegal under the Fair Housing Act. It aims to prevent racial or other discrimination by “steering” people towards certain neighborhoods but most agents prefer to avoid the possibility of law suits and avoid recommending schools and neighborhoods altogether. They should direct you to a website or other source of information, but they will leave the choice up to you.

– If I use an agent to help me buy, he'll only show me his own or his company's listings.

It would be unethical, possibly illegal and certainly self-defeating for an agent to do this. It is difficult enough to find a perfect home for a buyer that severely limiting the choice to only a few homes that are listed by the agent or his company means that he will almost certainly not make that sale. Also, with so many online services allowing buyers to search homes on their own, it will be immediately obvious to the clients that the agent is not giving them all the options and he will not be their agent for long.

– Agents will say or do anything, ethical or not, to get a quick sale.

This may be true of a minority of agents. A rational agent realizes that their business is heavily based on referrals. A satisfied client on average will provide 3 more clients to that agent, plus use her again in their next real estate transaction. When you buy or sell a home, sooner or later a friend or a relative who is looking to move will ask about your agent. What you say at that point will earn or cost that agent thousands of dollars in commission. Multiply that by all your friends and relatives who buy / sell a home in the future. And then by all THEIR friends and relatives etc.

No, a highly satisfied client is a much more valuable asset to the agent in the long term, than the commission from any single sale.

Secrets Of The GTA Agent – Learn the Tricks That GTA Agents Use to Generate Stable Streams of Income

Secrets Of The GTA Agent (Part I) Many realtors have asked me, what makes a top producer? In this article, I am about to share with you some of the techniques a top producing GTA agent in the field employs and also explain why having a GTA remains a serious aspect of being a real…

Secrets Of The GTA Agent (Part I)

Many realtors have asked me, what makes a top producer? In this article, I am about to share with you some of the techniques a top producing GTA agent in the field employs and also explain why having a GTA remains a serious aspect of being a real estate agent.

Have you ever now and then revisited the day you first sat in your manager's / mentor's office, that must be donkey years ago, and reminiscence what he or she said to you? One of the things that would have asked you back then would be: “Now what segment of the property market would you want to do?” and then they proceed to tell you all about a little something called “GTA” (Geographical Target Area). We all know what GTA does for you and why selecting a GTA is good for a new agent and all that, but have you ever stopped to think why, even now, even for you, a veteran in the property market, having a GTA is still, a very integral part of the vocabulary for all of us?

Along the way, when referrals come in and you start to have a core group of clients who gives you business every now and then, a real estate agent, being many years in the market, can start to wander from his GTA and become a District 65 agent. Not that real estate company of course! But someone who dabbles in all segments and runs around the entire country of Singapore (+65)! And then, when the referrals start to dry up in a lousy market, like the present, it seems business has suddenly come to a standstill. You suddenly find yourself back to square one like a newbie with little or no listings or work to do and / or facing the prospect of being out of the market.

I am here to tell you! Do not ever make the same mistakes that many have done. Do not ever, ever give up your GTA. A GTA is forever, much like a marriage, if you want to be guaranteed a steady stream of income month after month. In any form of business, do you ever see a company giving up their pool of clients or switching to another business or area at their whim and fancy? A GTA is not an overnight thing, it takes time to grow. Many agents fail to see this point and spend time, usually 1 or 2 years to build their GTA and exit when the sales slow down, just before it bears fruit.

Treat your GTA as your baby, put in all your time and effort that you can spare, tend to it and squat on it as if it was your land. With patience, courage and perseverance, watch it grow and prosper.

GTA is in fact a branding exercise. Like all businesses, branding is an integral part of sales and capturing the Market. I will share with you the techniques used to reinvent the branding in Secrets Of The GTA Agent (Part II).

What Does It Mean to Be a Probate Real Estate Agent?

I've been licensed for 40 years and have enjoyed an above average income but what really made the difference in my income was when I started working with Probate Real Estate. This niche can take any real estate agent with the right tools and information to six figures per year. It's common knowledge in the…

I've been licensed for 40 years and have enjoyed an above average income but what really made the difference in my income was when I started working with Probate Real Estate. This niche can take any real estate agent with the right tools and information to six figures per year.

It's common knowledge in the real estate industry that the average agent makes less than $ 30K per year in the business and 20% of the agents make 80% of the money. This is nothing new but for those in the 80% bracket who want to jump to the 20% income bracket I recommend you look at becoming a Probate Agent.

Most agents prospect by farming, telemarketing, open houses, and sphere of influence to produce leads in which to take listings and produce sales. I have done them all and was a major farmer in my early years. I knocked many doors, passed out many many magnets, garage sales sponsored, flags on Flag day and although it did help my income out a bit, it did not really make a serious impact, not the impact I was looking for. Farming is still dealing with a small percentage of homeowners who are going to sell and you're hiring that by keeping your brand in their face enough they call you when they do decide to sell.

I do not believe farmers do a transaction per month from farming although 4-6 lists per year from farming is not bad. Agents who farm will also come across a few sales and possibly refi's if they are working loans but the point is, 1 deal per month for most farmers does not happen. For a Probate Agent a transaction per month is very probable as I have been doing this for years. Agent I currently work with like Loree Otero, are doing 2 plus probate deals in a month.

Let's think about this for a moment. In my Counties in Northern California (Alameda and Contra Costa), I research about 100 new probate files each month that have real estate involved in the probate case. In my last 25 years of doing probates I would say somewhere around 50% plus of the heirs are going to sell the probate real estate home. This means 50 of those 100 per month are going to sell which means 600 leads per year. If you're on top of your real estate game do you think you could find 12 of those executors to work with (listing) or 12 of those probates you did not list but had a buyer for. The numbers really get crazy.

If you're not seeing six figures per year in your real estate business, or you want to add another six figures to what you are already looking for, look at probate real estate.

The Importance of Hiring a Commercial Real Estate Broker

For business owners who are currently searching for office space, you are probably aware that the whole process goes smoothly when you have a professional agent to help you. Perhaps, you are now looking for an agent, and have searched online to see what options the search engines will present you. You simply type the…

For business owners who are currently searching for office space, you are probably aware that the whole process goes smoothly when you have a professional agent to help you. Perhaps, you are now looking for an agent, and have searched online to see what options the search engines will present you. You simply type the keyword, and voila – you will see a long commercial real estate listing. So, how do you narrow down in order to begin this process? After all, you want to find an agent who will make the process as perfect as possible.

Opportunely, there are resources that can help you with your search. There are renovated commercial real estate websites that can deliver quality advices. A commercial real estate blog can help you a lot as it provides detailed information about the commercial agents and their works. However, one of the best ways to find is through referrals or word of mouth. Ask your business associates who have used agents before. There is nothing better than getting testimonials from trusted sources since they can provide you a fair insight and perspective.

To find the top candidate, it's time to narrow down options by asking key questions to the agents.

Tell me about your experiences as a commercial real estate agent?

Obviously, you may want to hire an experienced agent who knows the particulars of the industry. Seasoned agents know the ups and downs of the market, and have proven their toughness. Even though we love to see veteran agents who wear decently, do not turn away those who are neophyte because the enthusiasm and keen approach of the new commercial real estate is sometimes stronger and better.

What do you specialize?

Of course, hire only a commercial real estate agent who specializes in your business's industry. If your business sells PC hardware, find an agent who works for clients in the technology industry.

What sets you apart from other agents?

This question may sound subjective, but at the end of the day, you are able to track if her defining quality matches credentials and feedbacks. But, this is still important since it is the only way to observe how passionate and honest the agent is. An efficient agent in commercial industry will pledge and has a doctrine. Find out what quality he / she will bring forth to the table according to his or her personal approach.

Is your license updated?

Agents who have renewed their license have proven good records. So, it is noteworthy to ask if he / she renewed her license. If he / she is a new agent, make sure he / she is reliable and has the license to deal legal transactions.

Ask about the current trends in the market?

The way the commercial real estate agent answers this question will give you a hint if he / she is well informed. Take note that the most successful agent consistently researches news, informed about the latest trends of the market, and leverage their skills, knowledge and approach on your behalf.

Since this has something to do with legal transactions, the above questions will help you find an agent who is reliable, reliable, experienced and skilled.

We Can Get Paid Commissions on Rejected Offers

Sounds a little crazy I know, I wanted to make sure I attended your attention so you do not miss your opportunity with Probate Real Estate. The top producing agents all spend the majority of their time one one thing, a niche of the industry, something that they can create a system on and build…

Sounds a little crazy I know, I wanted to make sure I attended your attention so you do not miss your opportunity with Probate Real Estate.

The top producing agents all spend the majority of their time one one thing, a niche of the industry, something that they can create a system on and build a consistent income with.

Why Probate? Probate is a steady flow of motivated leads month in and month out? 50-80 NEW leads each month in my county alone. The best part is that only a handful of real estate professionals know that there is real property in need of being sold. Most of the time it's an investor not another agent.

Why do only the few know about these homes?

That's because most realors believe the myths that they have heard about probate real estate but never have actually dug deep enough to prove what is told.

Court confirmation, 10% deposits and court over bids, all that is for the birds and absolutely not necessary to get paid on a probate deal. I've been doing what I do for over 25 years, I do know on the nose what I'm talking about when it comes to Probate Real Estate.

When I make an offer to an estate either for myself, my partner or my investor clients, I'm coming in looking for a wholesale buy. I always approach the estate first for wholesale. When there is an interest in selling, either now during the probate or later after the final distribution, I will run through my probate system as I have described and take it all the way to either a Yes or No.

Probate Real Estate can be a science if you approach leads the same way each time then adjust once the particular facts for this estate become known.

Once I am at the point of making my offer for myself, my investor partners or client, I'll usually structure a price which is most likely going to be accepted by the Estate. This price will be based on what the estate would have realized if they sold retail after deducting all the expenses the estate would have to pay. Our job is to have the estate focus on net sales price not gross.

Once I break this gross figure down and have an understanding of net sales price, the entire transaction takes on a different shape. As a Probate Agent you need to know how to do this, I've perfected this system over 25+ years working in Probate Real Estate, it works IF you work. It's not a magic wand, sorry, you will have to do work.

So, if the gross price is $ 250K and the net to the estate after all facts and figures is $ 225K and I have provided it to them (commission, closing costs, cosmetic work, etc) then after the understanding that $ 225K is what they would be looking at on a retail sale I will come in slowly below this to start my purchase process.

This will not be my or my wholesale clients end price but will be a price I can sell the probate to another buyer during the due diligence process, I can still earn a commission if my wholesale offer can not take place.

You MUST control the estate home then decide if this will be the target wholesale price or a retail.

Most of the time it will end up a low retail final price and I slip an end user buyer in but the point is you're expecting rather than walking away when my target wholesale price can not be finalized with the estate. Your success as a Probate Agent will depend on how well you can understand and make this happen. Please keep in mind we explain both wholesale and retail to the estate and it's their choice we are not trying to trick anyone or steal the property. The option is theirs and you earn either way that's my point here today.

Please keep in mind, from the 90's until 2006, I was only concerned with the estates who responded off my marketing material and did not go after sales and listings on property where I was not FIRST in a wholesale purchase opportunity.

This is why my probate real estate business average 10-15 transactions per year. Today with my probate team, we're much more aggressive and go after all the probates regardless of whether they respond to our purchase marketing material or not. We follow up with phone calls after the marketing piece goes out (I receive 80% of the executive phone numbers and can show you how), we have a service which provides the estates who did not want to sell now with a monthly automatic sales report of homes in the subjects neighborhood which recently sold, all branded with my teams information.

Do some due diligence on probate in your area, if you do not know where to start, contact me and I'll help you figure it out.

The Ultimate Guide – How to Become a Real Estate Agent

Real estate agents have a sufficient flexible career and also just about endless pay growth. As a way to have success in this business, it is best to commit effort for continuing your own education plus building your portfolio of clients. Before you start practicing as a real estate professional, you will need to initially…

Real estate agents have a sufficient flexible career and also just about endless pay growth. As a way to have success in this business, it is best to commit effort for continuing your own education plus building your portfolio of clients. Before you start practicing as a real estate professional, you will need to initially meet your state's academic prerequisites and pass both state and national accreditation examinations.

To become a registered estate agent, you must first fulfill your state's instructional specifications and pass an examination. Whereas every state has their own variety of specifications, there are essential key elements that must be reached. Qualified estate agents must be:

  • At least 18 years of age
  • A US citizen

California mandates potential applicants to take three college-level instructional classes, as opposed to other states want a different set volume of class hours. Utah, as an example, purely calls for two classes that total 90 hours.

Contact your regional realty commission to find out specifically what the accreditation needs are in your state. Remember the fact that several housing agencies will also have their own unique education specifications.

Register for a Real Estate Program

Sign up for a certified and trustworthy program. A lot of tuition is going to be college-level, and you have the option of either taking classes on-line or simply in an actual class room.

Choosing a Brokerage

A broker is the company where realty works. Agents work in a supervision of brokers; therefore you will have to get in touch with brokerage firm before you complete your tutorials.

While searching for a brokerage company, look at its size, reputation as well as any training opportunities they'll give you. Uncover more about the brokerage's credibility through networking with other people in the field.

For being a real estate professional, you're going to be working on commission fee. The money that you will receive will be split between you and the broker. How the commission is divided is determined by the contract you have with the brokerage or real property company. In some cases, fresh agents make a lesser proportion as compared with more experienced agents or agents who offer more expensive homes. Whenever you get more working experience in the segment, you could settle a new commission rate with your broker.

How to Become Licensed?

Before you could get approved in your state, you are required to first pass a state and national exam. A number of states will in addition ask you to submit a criminal background check. The fee to receive an authorization will vary among states; numerous agents will probably pay at least $ 200 to become approved.

Get prepared for The First Year as being a real estate agent

Bear in mind that agents are generally paid on commission, and it may devote some time prior to making your very first sale. First-year real estate professionals are advised to allot some money to assist them to get through the beginning stages of the job. You should plan on having the initial weeks gathering your own customer base and learning the ropes.

Creating a Customer Base

Building your consumer base is a vital part for being a real estate professional. Novice realtors traditionally consult with a real estate broker and simply take advantage of their own individual social network to find clients. Gurus in the field encourage choosing a coach quickly who is able to drive you towards buyer and seller contacts. Your personal supervisors may separate agreements with you and also make it easier to learn more about the field.

Combined with your mentor's assistance, it's possible to utilize your very own circle of relationships to make contact with prospective buyers and home owners. There's an excellent probability that one of your mates, family or neighbors are in need of a real estate professional.

In numerous ways, becoming a real estate agent is usually like running your own business. You may be working in a brokerage firm with several other competent realtors, yet each member of the team operates on their own. You need to learn to differentiate yourself as being a real estate agent to draw in new customers and then sell real estate. Your success will likely be defined by the time, attempt and commitment you place into your job.