For Real Estate Professionals

5 Selling Potholes to Avoid in Spring 2014

Jovan Hackley
April 24, 2014

Agents and sellers across the country are singing “Happy days are here again.” Why? Because in many markets the tides are turning. Skittish buyers are exiting the fence, lending rates are still near historic lows, and typically spring is primetime for those who are finally ready to list.

Unfortunately, when market factors start to feel like magic, too many sellers fall prey to the risk of thinking homes just “sell themselves.”

Here are five potholes you and your sellers, literally, can’t afford to stumble into this spring:

1. Demand “Dumbification”

Yes, I just made the word up, but the complex is real. It’s bad when a client can’t see beyond their emotional attachment to a home. It’s even worse when your sellers ignore the facts about what’s making today’s buyer’s fall in love.

According to a recent National Association of Home Builders survey, the top features that will help your home compete with new listings that are hitting the market are:

  • Walk-in Master closets
  • Energy efficient windows and appliances
  • Laundry room and
  • “Great” rooms that are multi-purpose for the family

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4 Ways to Keep Your Buyers from Killing a Sale With a Lowball Offer

April 21, 2014

No one wants to feel like they’ve been taken advantage of in a housing transaction. These days, in most markets prices are rising and inventory is still tight, which means that tossing a lowball offer isn’t just bad form; it’s a sure-fire way to kill any hopes of getting a seller to accept your offer.

But many buyers may not realize how much the market has recovered and their price expectations may not be rooted in reality. It’s your job to set them straight and help guide them when it comes to determining what offer will get them a great deal, without totally turning off a seller.

Here’s how to set your clients up for success and keep them from making a lowball offer.

Plus! Love this information? Share it with your buyers all year long with this helpful handout! continue reading

4 Ways to Help Sellers Understand the Right Price

April 18, 2014

When it comes to selling a home, one of the most difficult pieces of the puzzle is pricing. And for real estate agents, it can be one of the most difficult conversations to have with your clients.

Sellers don’t want to come in too low and leave money on the table, but they also know that they don’t want to price themself out of the market, either. For sellers, this difficult situation can cause them to ignore the sound advice of their seasoned agent. It’s the real estate pro’s job to help clients find that happy medium between the right price that will get them the biggest payoff, be competitive in the current market, and leave them without seller’s remorse for parting with a home they love.

Here are four smart ways to help sellers understand what the right price is for their home and get them on their way to a successful sale.

Love these tips? Share this helpful handout on understanding home pricing with your sellers! continue reading

3 Reasons Your Leads Aren’t Closing

Jovan Hackley
April 17, 2014

Quick agent fame, overnight sensations, and companies who build crowd-followings fast have always scared me. Why? Because I know, billboards don’t make deals.

Need an example? There are plenty of other case studies that speak to the same fact.

Whether you’re marketing mansions or selling special spoons, the buzz you generate isn’t half as important as the clients that actually close the deal.

So, who closes? What’s in the magic sauce that turns a million web lurkers or phone calls into the happy handshake, recommendation, and commission check you need? And furthermore, why aren’t all of these “leads” turning into clients?

Here are the top 3 reasons your leads may not turning into clients and what you can do about it. continue reading

5 Ridiculous Things Sellers Say (and How You Can Deal With It)

Tara-Nicholle Nelson
April 14, 2014

Whenever you’re new to anything—a new job, a new exercise routine, a new school, a new town—you’re apt to say some pretty ridiculous things, whether it’s down playing how difficult something may be or being unaware of the reasoning behind certain situations.

For real estate professionals, the art of buying and selling homes is second nature. But for first-time (okay, sometimes second-time) sellers, the process of getting their home sold can be a bit of a mystery. Most sellers are well-intentioned, but in the midst of what can be an emotional or overwhelming experience, sometimes agents may hear a handful of seller sayings that in retrospect and out of context, can seem crazy and out-of-touch, and—yes—even ridiculous.

As an agent, tactfully correcting these sentiments is par for the course. So, here are some of the most common seller sayings I’ve heard and some smart insights and trouble-shooting tips to keep them from running a successful sale afoul. continue reading

Dream Open House: Mid-Century Landmark in the Hollywood Hills $1.795M

A landmark in Modernism, this 4-bed, 3.5-bath house by Buff, Straub & Hensman is both beautifully restored and move-in ready.


Where: 3584 Multiview Drive, Los Angeles
What: Sunday, April 13 from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
How Much: $1.795M
Listing Agent: Karen Juarez, Deasy Penner & Partners
More Information: See the full listing

What: A textbook example of LA modernism, the Halvorson Residence was designed by Buff, Straub & Hensman in 1959, and while most of the firm’s Post & Beam houses are sprawling, single-level structures arranged around a swimming pool or water feature, the Halvorson’s home was stacked on three levels over a canyon with views north into the Valley. continue reading

Real Estate Tongue-Biters: 12 Things You Wish You Could Say to Your Clients

Jovan Hackley
April 10, 2014

Sometimes real estate is anything but glamorous. But, let’s face it. You make it look good. You grit your teeth, painfully hold the smile, stroke the egos, and many days bite a hole in your tongue to get the deal done.

One thing I’ve learned is that no matter the agent, most of you don’t say the things you wish you could. So, as today’s favor we’ll do it for you (and offer a few ideas for helping you through some of the tough conversations).

12 things you wish you could say:

1. I have a life, even if you don’t.

The most noble thing about the great agents I know is that they really give themselves to their clients with very few boundaries. The problem is, some clients forget that agents have a life. I’ve heard too many stories of surprise home visits, 3 a.m. calls, and other intrusions that prove that some clients forget that agents have a life.

A tough conversation about when and how you normally work can save you some hassle at the start. Great client relationships happen when you manage expectations. continue reading

Trulia Guide: 5 Smart Strategies to Earn More Listings

April 9, 2014

Seller listings are vital to building a robust, thriving real estate business. A strong stable of solid seller listings can lead to more predictable commissions, more controllable timeframes, and provides the opportunity to meet new clients, build your brand and marketing, and expand your sphere-of-influence.

In times like these, where homeowners are still holding out on selling until they feel they can get the best price, finding these clients is easier said than done. In 2014, industry and economic experts expect more inventory to open as the year moves on. Good things are on the horizon for real estate agents, but you don’t have to wait until the market shifts in order to increase your seller client count. Here are five strategic moves to make to build your seller-side business in today’s market.

9 Things Your Buyers Should Ignore While House Hunting

April 7, 2014

For many buyers, looking for a new home can be a challenge. As agents, we see homes daily and are well-trained on how to see past the superficial problems and see a home for its potential. But when clients are looking for the home in which they plan on building their lives, it can be hard to envision how a home could truly be ‘mine.’ Many people choose to remodel and stage their homes prior to putting it on the market, but then there are the vast majority of people who choose to sell their beloved home “as-is.”

While a turn-key home is ideal for people who want to move right in and make no changes, there are those “time warp” homes that are actually incredible gems that just need a little polishing.

Love these tips? Share this information with current clients and your prospective buyers. Download the handout to include in your marketing materials and to help buyers throughout their home buying journey!

As you walk your clients through their house hunt, here are 9 things about a for-sale home that you should remind clients to ignore in order to keep them from passing on a what could be the perfect home for them.
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Dream Open House: Spectacular Views From a Clocktower Condominium in Vinegar Hill/DUMBO $3.675M

Once a printing plant for the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the building was converted to residential lofts about five years ago—and provides the framework for this spectacular home.


When: Sunday, April 6 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m
Where: 1 Main Street, #9D, Brooklyn
How Much: Asking $3.675M (a reduction from last year’s asking price of $3.999M) and CCs/Taxes of $2221 per month
Listing Agent: Karen Heyman, Sotheby’s International Realty,
New York, New York
More Information: See the full listing!
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