Tag Archives: Real Estate

Social Media is about the culture, not control, domination, and leverage

Jump on the social media bandwagon

Browsing through a real estate trade magazine supposedly targeted at highly successful agents, I couldn’t help but chuckle at the amount of editorial content and advertising focused on social media and internet marketing:  Social media ROI, dominating Google, new media marketing, and crash courses in social media.  Of course, internet marketing and especially social media marketing are all the buzz in the real estate world now.  I am inundated with invites to webinars, offers for training, and book pitches. In an industry dominated for decades by push marketing techniques, giving real estate agents a little basic technical knowledge, without a thorough orientation on social media culture can have disastrous effects.

It is very revealing to check out the social graphs of the real estate social media magazine writers and the highly-touted social media instructors in the industry.  Many real estate instructors have had to adopt their 20 year old course content rather quickly to the ever-accelerating utilization of social media, technology, and other web based innovations. But it’s not enough to learn how to setup a Facebook, twitter or LinkedIn account, build a Facebook business page, or set up a blog if you don’t understand the culture you are stepping into. I don’t see many articles in the trade magazines about social media culture or engagement, just how to control, leverage, and dominate.    One absolute truth about the social media culture:   it has very little patience with being controlled, leveraged or dominated.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Matt Hamm

RETSO has matured as a top-notch real estate tech conference

The Robot

Last week I attended RETSO (#RETSO)  – Real Estate Tech South in Duluth (Atlanta burbs), Georgia.  The conference was extended to 2 days this year and was jam-packed with the best real estate thinkers and speakers in the country.  This was not a RE BarCamp, but a well organized and tightly scheduled conference.  Organized for the third year by Brad Nix, Matt Fagioli, and crew, RETSO is a top-notch event.

Just before I left, I read Chris Garrett’s post, Why I Sucked at SXSW So You Don’t Have to, which I am archiving to read before attending any future conferences.  Chris gives some good pointers about do’s and don’ts and how to get the most out of tech conferences. STOP NOW and read it, if you are planning on attending any type tech conferences or BarCamps.

So, I am not going to do a play-by-play of the conference, and I am not going to write about the social/networking events (what happens in Duluth stays in Duluth).  I don’t need to list all the Cool Kids – they know who they are.  I will just do a stream of consciousness summary of my notes.  I didn’t include links, but you can Google anything that looks interesting.  I got lots of useful ideas.   Maybe you can pick through this and get some too:

Nik-Nik and the Social Media Dance

URL on Twitter profile should land on thank you/call for action page with contact information
Jeff Turner– wake up and smell your brand; your brand is you and what you deliver; conversation without content is clutter; you don’t need a social media strategy, you need a strategy that includes social media;  thecadmus.com and neoformics.com for trends and analytics
YELP presented by Brian Copeland – open your YELP for business owners account; Yelp=chamber of commerce 2.0; Yelp widget at widgetbox.com; take framed copy of your review to the reviewee; keep it local; use YELP Facebook app
Ricardo Bueno – whoopra.com; visistat.com; animoto.com; wistia.com; tubemogul.com; apture.com; socialaddict.com; gist.com; dlvr.it {useful sites for the SM/tech inclined – you look ’em up}  Best WordPress Plug in Find: mobilepress (automatically reformats your blog for mobile
Jeff Turner – Transparency is for amateurs.  transparency rhymes with trust;
Mike Simonson ALTOS Research – what real estate customers want:  What’s for sale?  How much is my house worth? How’s the market?
Video master, Brian Copeland, on Video – video for home tour, neighborhood tour, buyer-seller info, feature selling, fun, private.  Camera:  Flip; next step up Sony with external mic-ing. Shure or audiotechnics lavalier mics on Amazon. Lighting- Sears Craftsman work area lights, cover with wax paper, use indirectly; Software:  Windows movie maker, Sony Vegas;  Video hosting: Youtube, bright code, picasa, tubemogul.   Music-be careful about copyrights, no lyrics, musicbakery.com, royalty-freemusic.com.  Keep videos <3minutes; <2 minutes even better.
Nicole Nickolay – Nik-Nik – goal setting and planning,befriend-listen-engage-share, find your voice, embrace your uniqueness, every day is an opportunity, less is more, give your computer a break, listen and learn, use social media CRM- gist and batchbook.

Well, there you have it.  I am already looking forward to next year!

Everything was just peachy at RETSO

So you want to buy a short sale?

Re-posted from http://memphisrealestatebuzz.com

Second only to Foreclosures, Short Sales create a lot of buzz among investors and home buyers looking for the almighty good deal. A short sale is a property that is sold for less than is owed on it. Pretty simple concept: you bought a house for $200,000 in 2004, with 10% down. Over the years you pay down your $180,000 mortgage to $160,000. Then for one reason or another… say, you lose your source of income, you REALLY need to sell. BUT, because of the current housing market, your house is now only worth $130,000. A tough pill to swallow, but you have to unload the house. Well it beats having a foreclosure on my credit report. But what about the $30K difference? How will I come up with that money? Welcome to the world of Short Sales.

Jay Thompson, The Phoenix Real Estate Guy, wrote one of the most concise and informative posts on short sales that I have read, so I will skip the mechanics here and just say that the banks, being the altruistic entities that are, just love negotiating short sales with distressed owners, and what they love even more is working offers from buyers expecting a deal. Maybe love is the wrong word, as it implies some human element. The banks are not human, even though there is an interface with an Asset Manager, who, supposedly can make decisions. Human decisions can be measured in milliseconds, but bank decisions can take weeks. The bank does not care if your buyer’s loan lock or lease is running out, or even if she is a well-healed investor paying cash. It’s the bank’s way or no way. Oh, and if there is a second mortgage, double the trouble, because in a short sale, as opposed to a foreclosure, subordinate mortgage holders get a piece of the action too.

I closed my first short sale this month. My buyer clients fit all the criteria for Successful Short Sale Buyers:
1. They were not in a hurry to close
2. They could have and would have walked away from the deal at any time.
3. They had a very high tolerance for the erratic and inexplicable behavior of the bank.
4. They stood their ground when the bank’s foreclosure representative tried to squeeze a fee out of them for delaying a foreclosure auction (the bank backed down and canceled foreclosure sales- twice).
5. Their lender was flexible and helpful throughout the process.

So, for a purchase project started before Halloween with me preparing them for the process, Dave and Phoebe were rewarded with a really good deal on one of the largest homes in their neighborhood. Was it easy? Was it worth it? Let them tell you.

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