Tip of the Week – Mapping properties correctly

 

Have you ever had an issue with the way a listing maps on CBTulsa, Zillow or Trulia?

The video above explains how you can quickly change the mapping of a property in IQOffice and get the latitude and longitude coordinates of where you mapped it.  You can then send these coordinates to the help desk of Zillow and Trulia so they can map the property correctly.  It’s really easy and fast.

Take a look and let me know what you think.

What experience do you give?

How big of a deal is the experience we give our clients? Yep, it’s a REALLY BIG DEAL! Well, how about the experience that we give the agent that’s on the other side of a transaction that we are working? I would argue that that is a REALLY BIG DEAL also.

I recently was on vacation with my wife (5 days with NO KIDS, that’s huge because we have 6 of them) and I received a call on Sunday evening around 6:30pm from an agent that sold one of my listings. OK, it was really my only listing, but that’s another story.  Our closing date was a couple of weeks out, but this agent was inquiring as to when my sellers would be moving the remaining items out of the garage.  So I think to myself, self? What’s the big deal, we have 2 more weeks before closing!?! What came out was, “well probably sometime later this week”. And then it happened, the dramatic pause in our conversation. The agent said, “I guess my closer hasn’t contacted you, because we are scheduled to close tomorrow at 3pm”.  This single statement by this agent caused my experience level to plummet at a rapid pace.  My first thoughts were: When was I going to be notified by YOU, not your closer? Why didn’t my closer know about it? Did you know that not all of the repairs were completed yet because we still have 2 weeks to go? Did anyone ask if it was OK with my sellers, it’s still their house the last time I checked? (done venting).  Needless to say, I had quite a bit of work to do that evening and the next morning to (1) Get the OK from my Sellers to close it – they were actually thrilled about it, (2) hope that they could clear out the garage by the closing time – which they did, (3) Contact Beck Mechanical to service the HVAC system and Carpenter Home Repair to finish up the other repairs on VERY short notice – these guys rock, (4) bring my closer, Charissa Taylor at Executives Title & Escrow up to speed so she can prepare everything – she is incredible and did it all with a smile, and (5) shuffle all of the repair receipts, payments, etc… so we could actually close and do it all this while I’m in a different state (Did I mention that I love my iPad?).

The EXPERIENCE for my CLIENT:  They got everything moved out, signed the closing documents early (thank you Charissa) and walked away with a little more than they thought because of the early closing. My sellers think I can move mountains for my clients (Ok, small hills.)

My EXPERIENCE:  Even though it turned out OK, I thought it was handled poorly.  There were way too many assumptions made by the other agent and their closer with absolutely NO communication at all.  It made me feel like this was their first real estate transaction (which it wasn’t).

Now I’m sure that the other agents clients had a great experience and that any of the issues that came up were pushed on me as not being prepared (I can’t be positive about this, but it’s possible).  It’s easier for us to give our clients a great experience, even when we drop the ball, because we can push the responsibility and the blame to the other agent, because our clients don’t know any different. But what does that do for our reputation in the real estate industry?

HERE’s THE DEAL – At Coldwell Banker Select, we have partnerships with Executive’s Title & Escrow, Mortgage Closing Services, and AMC Mortgage for a reason, to give our clients the absolute BEST EXPERIENCE they can possibly have when either buying or selling a home.  We have more control when these companies are utilized and we have ZERO control when an outside company is used.  These partnerships also help us look and perform more professional to our counterparts on a transaction.

So when you think about how you are going to provide the very BEST EXPERIENCE to your clients AND to the other agents that you are working with (because both are a BIG DEAL), make sure you have partnerships with companies that can get it done for you EVERY TIME!

Feel free to leave a comment or 3 or 4 on any other similar stories that you may have had (Good or Bad).

Open House info on Realtor.com

Well, well, well, I just found out something interesting.  Did you know that our open house information feeds automatically to Zillow, Trulia, and ColdwellBanker.com? Just by adding the information into IQOffice it flows to those sites.  Pretty cool, huh?  Did you also know that it flows to TulsaOpenHouse.com? (that one may be new to you).  I always thought that because we sent our open house information back to the MLS to show up on TulsaOpenHouse.com that it would automatically feed to Realtor.com.  NOPE!  The only way, for now ;-), to get your open house information to Realtor.com is to login to your account and add it to your listing.

Now some of you may be asking, “But Bryan, I’ve never logged into my Realtor.com account and don’t know how to do that. Can you help me with that?”.  Well, of course I can.  I am the Tool Man and this is Tool Time so here we go.

  1. go to http://solutioncenter.realtor.com
  2. Select the MLS as Tulsa
  3. Put in your MLS indentifier (This is your GTAR #)
  4. Put in your password (if you don’t know it, click on the Forgot Password Link, If you don’t have an account, click on the Sign Up Here Link – only if you are new to real estate).
  5. On the left menu, click on “Edit a Listing”
  6. Select the listing you want to enter the Open House info for and click “Edit”.
  7. Click on Open Houses and then “Add an Open House Date”
  8. Select the Time and Date and click Save.

YOU’RE DONE!

Now that wasn’t all that bad was it?  We are working on a way for us to send this information directly to Realtor.com without you having to go through this step, but for now, you’ll need to do this.

Hope this helps and don’t forget to comment on this post if you like it, hate it, or just want to sound off.

ColdwellBanker.com Profile Pages

Did you know that you have a profile page on ColdwellBanker.com? Yep, that’s right. It’s one of those perks you get for being BLUE.

Here’s what you do. Go to http://cbworks.coldwellbanker.com/ and login. If you don’t know what your login is, then you follow these steps. On the CBWorks login page, it will say “First Time Users, Click here for Access”. CLICK THERE. It will ask you for your email address. This will be your company email address. The CBWorks system will then email you your password for the system. Follow the steps in the email to get logged in to the system. If it asks for your CREST ID, contact accounting and they can get that for you.

Once you get logged into CBWorks, you will see your name on the left. Click on your name, this will take you to the ColdwellBanker.com/secure site where you enter your profile information. On the left hand side, click on “Profile” and then on “Edit Profile”.

There are some requirements that you have to have in your profile in order for it to show up. (1) You MUST click on “Media” and upload your photo. (2) You must have 6 bullet points combined about you in “General”, “Credentials”, or “Qualifications” area. The rest you can put in what you want. If there is any information that is wrong that you can’t change, send an email to czumwalde@cbtulsa.com and we will get it fixed for you (She’s going to love me for that one).

Once your profile is setup, it takes about 24hours to be active on the site. Check back the next day and let me know if you have any issues.

Remember, if you want the leads from your listings to go directly to YOU on ColdwellBanker.com, then you have to have your profile page setup.

HouseLogic.com Information

  • Check out some of the articles that you can pull from HouseLogic.com/members.  It’s FREE if you are a Realtor.  You can post these in your BLOG, share them on Social Media, download them for a newsletter, etc…  It’s a pretty nice service that NAR provides.
  • Dos and Don’ts of Homebuyer Incentives

    Homebuyer incentives can be smart marketing or a waste of money. Find out when and how to use them. Read
  • Fielding a Lowball Purchase Offer on Your Home

    Consider before you ignore or outright refuse a very low purchase offer for your home. A counteroffer and negotiation could turn that low purchase offer into a sale. Read
  • 6 Reasons to Reduce Your Home Price

    While you’d like to get the best price for your home, consider our six reasons to reduce your home price. Read
Visit houselogic.com for more articles like this.
Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

I met with the CEO of Trulia – Pete Flint

So today I had the opportunity to have lunch with the Founder and CEO of Trulia.com, Pete Flint.  First off, what a great guy.  I thoroughly enjoyed meeting him and talking to him about how Trulia came about and what’s in store.  It was pretty cool when they asked me about what they could do for our agents to make Trulia better and to serve our agents better. (Yes, I did take the opportunity, if you’re wondering).  We talked about data integrity, leads, agent support, strategies to help drive more leads to agents, training, and promotion of Trulia products that help agents do more business and that are FREE.  If you know me, I am a big fan of FREE.

So, many of you don’t know about the Trulia Agents App for the iPhone. It’s really slick (download it at the app store).  You can see all of your leads that your listings generate off of Trulia without having to worry about whether or not you “accidentally” deleted the lead email that was sent to you. We all know that many of the emails look the same and it’s easy to delete a legit lead. You can also “Check-in” to a property that you have toured and share the information with a buyer that you may be working with.  Here’s what Trulia has to say about it from their BLOG.

“Trulia for Agents also pushes immediate lead notifications to the iPhone, helping agents respond quickly to consumer inquiries.  Agents can also access all of their leads, store their client list and add new contacts while hosting an open house.Also included in the app is a quick property lookup that lets agents find nearby listings and instantly share homes that fit clients’ needs.  They can also share other neighborhood details including open home times, driving directions, nearby restaurants, grocery stores and more.”

So go download the App and use it.  You will do more business with it.

RREIN Newsletters



I just received my latest issue of the “Home Matters” e-newsletter from about 10 different agents that have me on their COI list. It was great, and the best part about it was, I didn’t have to do anything and neither did the agents. How cool is that? The newsletter provided me great information on Interior Design, Home Staging, Prepping my home to sell in the Fall, the short sale process explained, and access to all the listings for sale in our MLS. Oh, and all I have to do to contact the agent that sent me the email is either click on their email, or pick up the phone and call them. The information and picture of the agent is right there in front of me.

Did you know that I have a really hard time coming up with good information for my BLOG. Why don’t I just take some of this information from the RREIN newsletter and repost it to my BLOG? I don’t know. Sounds like a pretty good idea. Where are you getting your content from??? 😉

So, if you don’t have your contacts loaded into IQOffice, get on it. They automatically feed to the RREIN system and your contacts get the monthly email newsletter from YOU. Make sure you add yourself to your list so you know what they are getting.

There’s Only One Way to Go (Thoughts of a new agent)

I received this letter from a dynamic, hard-working, new agent in our company. Thought I might share it with you all:


“Is it ok to write about your job when you’re in a really bad mood about it (among other things)? I think so…it’s why they call it editing.

So I’ve been thinking about what to call my renderings. Here are my choices:

“Tales of a Frustrated Real Estate Rookie”

“There’s Only One Way to Go From Here”

“Seven Months in and not a Dime to Show”

I haven’t decided yet because all of these things keep running through my head, so I’ll let you know when I’ve realized the most apropos description, which may only come after I’m done writing down my thoughts regarding the first six months of being a realtor.

Seven months in and I have yet to make a dime! It’s true—I got my license in January and began my post-license training in the middle of 22 inches of snow and temps that fell below Alaska’s. Wonder how the real estate business is doing up there? Anyway, in March I sent out 127 “farming letters” to a neighborhood across the highway from me, only to be called by a realtor who shall remain unnamed, who informed me that she lived in the neighborhood; therefore, it belonged to her. I used the only techno-jargon I knew and told her I had done my “Market Analysis” and had discovered that no realtor owned a “20% or better market share” in that area which made it free game! She also worked for another agency, so it didn’t matter anyway. Then she offered to “work WITH ME!” I told her, “Snooze, ya loose, sister,” in so many words. That was the only phone call I got.

I then went on to FSBOs, (about 6) and actually got a call from 1, whose house I listed in May, at a price much higher than I wanted, but it was my first. I needed a sign in someone’s yard and name recognition, so I was willing to pay for it. Turns out, this person works a job that produces many referrals of those needing to sell their homes. So I got my second listing off of referral, which felt fantastic—finally!

Also in March, I began working floor hours answering the phone (when it rang) and I learned a great deal by answering the questions of realtors calling in saying, “HURRY…look up such and such a house and tell me such and such!” And I got really good at it. Then one day I got a call from a woman who wanted to place a bid on a HUD home and I went through the roof with excitement! My first buyer! Wow… And… the house was a $22,300 bungalow that was going to prove a really good investment for my client, but not much commission for me. Again with the name recognition. She made the bid in April and here we are in July, hoping and praying to close on the deal by the end of the month. With a few dozen unpleasant surprises behind us, it will be worth it. But the next HUD buyer who comes along, I’ll probably refer. We’ve got a new rookie coming in the next couple of months—she can have him/her. OK, not really. Remember…“not a dime so far…”

I am now up to 5 listings, 2 active buyers, 3 “hot” buyers, and about 20 “working” buyers. Given those numbers, I would agree the saying has rung true… “Buyers ARE liars.” They don’t mean to be. Everybody wants to buy a house. Just not everybody CAN buy a house. And not everbody INTENDS to buy a house. LOTS of people want to LOOK at houses. Aggravates the daylights out o’ me, but what choice do I have? And most buyers want something for nothing—one of those awesome HUD deals that their cousin got. Or they want a 3BR 2BA brick home with a fenced yard, an attached 2 car garage, and wood floors in Owasso for $70,000. Me: I’m not sure that exists but I’ll look! (Bright cheery smile with gritted teeth) Them: But I’ve got CASH!! (Pride written all over their face)

Sometimes I ask myself, “What was I thinking?” I mean, the economy is the absolute worst it’s been in decades, and I go into Real Estate? People giggle or offer me sympathy and both are warranted. But…I’m about to help a single mom with a daughter in Afghanistan close on her very first home, and I’ve helped a childless widow list her home so she can move into a much-deserved and much-needed retirement community. I even took her 4-wheeled walker to her after a friend had borrowed it, and she cried. I am helping a couple who have re-united purchase a new “start-over” home, and have listed 2 inherited homes after the passing of a loved one, thus taking a huge weight off the shoulders of the new owners. I had no idea. No idea. After having taught school for 10 years, I was afraid I would not be “helping people” as much in this profession as I had in the past as a teacher. In the words of my 7-year-old nephew, I was “Wrong-O!” I absolutely LOVE this job and I know I’m doing exactly what I have been purposed to do at this point in my life. God has certainly shown me that I can serve him ANYWHERE and doing ANYTHING!

Soooo.,.poo on “not a dime yet,” and “frustrations of rookie-dom,” I’m picking “There’s Only One Way to Go From Here!” as my title. It’s already actually pretty darn good, and I like it, and I know the Lord will provide if I honor Him in my work and serve those He brings to me. Besides, I haven’t had a paycheck in 4 years—why start now? We’ll be okay till a little lagniappe starts rolling in. Until then, I’ll focus on the positives and reap the rewards of a job I know has been well-done thus far. Got to go…Open House at 2:00 and showing another at 4:30. God is good… “


Thanks to Stephanie Wideman for sharing her thoughts and experience with us all.

Individual Property Websites

So, you’re getting ready to go on a listing presentation and you want to know how to determine the right domain name for your Individual Property Websites (IPW) so you can tell your seller. What is it? What’s the address? How’s it typed in? Are they working yet? What did you say?

Yep, I get those all the time. Here are some of the answers and a slick way to know EXACTLY what the web address is to your listings IPW.
(1) YES, the IPW’s are up and working, they have been for the past few years, but we changed the addressing scheme to match the address of the listing and a really cool, new look and feel.
(2) The standard address for your listings IPW’s is http://www.address.cbtulsa.com
(3) The “address” part of the domain name is determined by how it is typed into MLS. If “street” is spelled out, then it will be in the domain name. If it is “st”, then that’s how it will show up.
Here’s the easiest way to find the actual domain name for your listing’s IPW:
(1) Go to http://www.cbtulsa.com and go to the details page of your listing.
(2) Click on the “View Property Website” link to the right of the photo. This will pull up the IPW of your listing.
(3) Look at the address bar of the website. SHAZAAM – There it is.
I hope this helps, especially if you are getting ready to go on a listing presentation, emailing a link to your seller, or inserting these links into your e-newsletter or flyer.

Text or Call – Let the Consumer Choose

Well, here we go again. At Coldwell Banker Select, we like to think of ourselves as “Technologically Advanced”. Fancy term for simply providing the latest tools to our agents to help them grow their business. The latest development to our HomeFacts system does just that.

You can now TEXT the property code to (918) 990-0660 on your phone and receive a text message back with the basic information on the property, the listing agents name and contact info, and a link to the property listing on the agent’s mobile website. The agent will be notified with the consumers phone number, the address of the property, and whether it was a text from the yard sign, Select Living, or whatever the source. Pretty slick. Even if you call the number, it will let you put in the code, just like the normal HomeFacts number.

The nice thing is when the consumer clicks on the mobile site link, they get to see all of the photos of the property. It’s a great way to drive someone to the agent’s mobile site, without having to do a lot of advertising.

Maybe, they’ll even come up with something that will ask the consumer if they want a text with the property information, even if they call. (hint, hint, wink, wink!)