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Top 10 Roadblocks: Clearing the Path to Success
Friday, February 28, 2020 at 10:00 AM PST There are plenty of reasons why leads may start to pull-back when you reach out to them. Get one step ahead by understanding common roadblocks and how to clear the path. In this session, we'll share the top 10 challenges in connecting, converting and establishing value with online leads and how to overcome them. Examples of what we cover: Just wanted more info on the property Not ready to talk to an agent The listing is under contract Register now!
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4 Tech Tips Every Agent Should Give Their Clients
Agents often look for technology that can save them time processing transactions so they can spend more time producing new business. But what technology can your clients use to improve their selling or buying experience? Here are four tech tips you can share with your clients, tech advice that can take some of the stress out of buying or selling a home. 1. Faxing without the fax machine Your clients have paper documents you need, but you don't want them wasting their time driving them to you or waiting for the documents to arrive in the mail. Our phones have replaced fax machines, making it easier than ever for your clients to create a PDF from any paper document in a snap. The app stores are full of options, from Genius Scan to Easy Fax, all allowing the instant creation of a compressed PDF that is simple to create and email to an agent quickly. You can even send encrypted PDFs for enhanced security. 2. Connecting to you with a push of a button Today's top real estate apps – from Homesnap to realtor.com, as well as many brokerage apps – allow clients to connect directly to you, their agent. This is the one feature that agents should focus on to encourage clients to download their app and get them engaged. Communication is the number one thing most clients want. Encourage them to use just one app to reach you. It helps and organizes and tracks text conversations in one place. This can be a great time saver for your clients – and you. 3. Organize the house hunt Agents know that their customers are going to visit open houses. Help them better organize their route. Yes, they can use Google Maps to maximize their trip, but there are alternative apps that can automatically build the most efficient route for multiple addresses. These route planning apps can optimize a list of open house visits quickly and easily. Two top options in the app stores include Route4Me and Road Warrior. 4. Checking off the checklist If your firm has a transaction management system, such as Form Simplicity, you understand the value of checklists. Helping your clients keep track of the homes they prefer can be done in most of the leading search apps. However, keeping it simple for your clients with a home shopping checklist might be a more welcome solution for your clients. A house hunting checklist app also helps them use the more logical side of their brain when shopping. Checklists also help clients remember which homes have the key features they really liked. The app stores offer a few solutions. GoCanvas is a business forms app that offers a Home Buyer's Checklist. An app called Checklist allows clients to create their own custom lists and offers a suggested template of items online as well. Finding ways to help reduce the stress many clients experience is important. After all, a recent survey found about 15% of buyers were reduced to tears during the process. Another 20% got in a fight with their spouse or partner. Share these tech tips as another way to make it all a little easier. And remember that if you have access to Tech Helpline, analysts are ready to help you with any tech questions you may have. Tricia Stamper is Director of Technology at Florida Realtors®, which owns and operates Tech Helpline and Form Simplicity.
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Case Study: How Quicken Loans Boosted this Agent's Closing and Retention Rates
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Real Estate Photography: 9 Tips for Stunning DIY Photos
Let's face it, if you want to sell a house, visuals are key. Having vibrant, inviting and attractive photos of the homes you are trying to sell is paramount. The point is, you cannot overlook the idea of having a visually stunning photo of the property. Based on the an article by The Close, featuring 23 Tips for Stunning DIY Photos, we've compiled a list featuring some of these useful tips. Here are nine tips for stunning DIY photos:
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Dealing with Malware
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Reinventing Your Business from Scratch
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 at 10:00 AM PST Are you wanting to shake things up in 2020? Do you want to expand your market place, or change your niche all together? Looking to switch from first-time homebuyers to luxury, move from buyers agent to being a listing agent or take on the town next door. Maybe your life has given you the opportunity to move halfway across the country. How do you start over and build from scratch? We'll be talking with Shannon King who has done this five times in 20 years from Texas to Hawaii with a few stops in between. She's going to share with us her road map to taking on new markets. You'll learn 10 tips all agents can implement into their current business to increase clients even if you're not expanding or reinventing your niche. You'll learn what you need to do now before you take the leap into a new market place. A perfect session for agents and brokers alike. Shannon is a top selling broker, she will share how she moves into new markets and turns strangers into clients and will give insight into launching an impactful boutique brand that recruits and trains successful agents. Register now!
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Support and Illustrate Your Pricing Strategy in Minutes, Not Hours
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How to Promote Yourself and Stay Connected with Clients
The weather outside is cold, but that doesn't mean the market is! With more Americans planning to buy or sell their homes, it is critical to not only catch the client's attention, but to stay connected once you have it. Here are some helpful tricks and tips you can use to build long-lasting relationships and a positive reputation.
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The Pros and Cons of Using a Virtual Real Estate Transaction Coordinator
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Can You Recover an Old Gmail Account?
Since its initial introduction on April 1, 2004, Gmail has become the world's most popular email service with nearly a billion and a half registered users around the globe and a favorite among Realtors. But have you ever deleted your Gmail account only to regret doing it? Well, fear not, because there is a way to reverse the process as long as you act quickly. Here's a thorough guide to restoring your Gmail account.
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Safe Selling: Showing Prep Tips for When You Can't Arrive Early
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Get the Most out of the RPR/zipForm Partnership
Monday, February 24, 2020 at 12:00 PM PST A part of your business day just got easier. Welcome to the RPR/zipForm integration. Join this workshop to learn how to leverage these two powerful REALTOR® business tools to your advantage. Learn to easily set-up and connect your RPR and zipForm accounts, and then how to improve your business efficiencies by moving seamlessly between the two. Register now!
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Lead Capture and IDX: A Trifecta of Winning Solutions
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Understanding the 2020 Real Estate Market
There is one common question every real estate agent needs the answer for: "How's the market?" While it's important to know what's happening in your area, it is also good to know what's happening nationwide. In the most recent Secrets of Top Selling Agents webinar, "2020 Market Predictions for Real Estate," speaker Steve Harney shared what experts are saying about this year's real estate market.
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Best Apps to Track Your Business Expenses: Expensify and Mile IQ
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18 Tips to Make a Normal Real Estate Listing Video into Internet Gold
There are a lot of real estate listing videos on the Internet. There are also a lot of bad ones. People come up with excuses. "My listings are nothing special." "People only care about luxury listings." "I don't have good equipment." It's nonsense. Check out Brad Simmons' channel on YouTube. He has more subscribers showing multigenerational homes in rural Kentucky than former Bravo star Josh Flagg does showing Malibu mansions. In this this post, we'll show you 18 tips to take a normal listing video and turn it into ratings gold.
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Top 5 Data Needs for Researching Commercial Properties
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Fun 30 Second Quiz: What's Your Time Management IQ?
Take this fun quiz to see how well you're doing at staying organized and managing your time effectively. It'll take less than 30 seconds to complete. Jot down either true or false for each question and at the end of the quiz, check the scoring system below to see how well you did.
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Growing Your Business with Advanced Virtual Tours
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10 Valentine's Day Gifts for Real Estate Agents
Real estate agents are great at picking homes, perfect neighborhoods, and helping their clients through complicated contracts. And, of course, they're also great spouses, partners, friends, siblings, and parents! Got a real estate agent in your life that you want to spoil this Valentine's Day? Want to treat yourself to something sweet? Check out this list of 10 gifts for the real estate agent in your life.
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3 Rules for Smoother Transactions and More Referrals
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3D Walk-throughs Aren't Just for Listings: Capture These 6 Local Spaces to Boost Engagement and Business Opportunity
As a real estate professional, a meaningful connection to your community is vital to the success of your business. But we know you've heard the same advice on the subject over and over--host events, be a source of community information, volunteer, etc. Today, however, we're going to introduce you to a high-tech way to connect to your local market--and, bonus, it's sure to dazzle and engage consumers in your area. That strategy? Capturing community spaces in 3D walk-throughs. Not only does this help relocating buyers become more familiar (not to mention creating sight-unseen opportunities) with your community, but it also adds confidence and comfort to the home search through knowledge of local establishments, helping real estate consumers decide which neighborhood suits them best. "Increasingly, especially when we're talking about suburban redevelopment, you're not only choosing the house, you're choosing the neighborhood and the places that are part of that neighborhood," says Charles Nitschke, Chief Integration Officer, Sotheby's Tomlinson Group. Nitschke is part of a growing group of savvy real estate professionals around the country who are tapping into the power of Matterport's technology to capture three-dimensional models, or "digital twins," of various community establishments and businesses in their market areas. Here are examples of six local spaces you can capture in your community to boost consumer engagement, lead generation and awareness of your real estate brand. Schools So you've got school ratings, school district zoning, and other information on your real estate website. That's a great start, but you can take things to a whole other level by including 3D walk throughs of those schools where people can virtually experience and learn about the facility for themselves. Nitschke finds that this is especially useful for markets with colleges or universities. "[Institutions] are tremendously interested in being able to show off their space to attract students, to be able to walk the parents and students through the facility, to get comfortable with it before they start travelling to narrow down their final school selection." After scanning their first school, Nitschke's brokerage, Sotheby's Tomlinson Group, approached another. Next summer, they will scan Idaho College's athletic department and then scale out into dorms, classrooms, and eventually the whole college. The 3D scan will be available on the college's website and on their brokerage's site, said Nitschke. "It's a big part of becoming that digital mayor, becoming that tour guide for the community." Local art galleries Lisa Larkin is the designated broker for RE/MAX Select in Tucson, Ariz., and she has long understood the power of co-branding with influential local figures. For years, her team has worked with Diana Madaras, a high-profile local artist, to host client appreciation events at her gallery, license her art on their marketing materials, and more. When Larkin and her team discovered Matterport, they offered to scan a new gallery space she had just purchased so that she could put it on her website. It's now featured prominently on her site's front page. They put the scan on their website too, under a relocation tab where people new to Tucson could see different places and businesses around town. The result is mutually beneficial: real estate consumers learn of an important local artist, and art consumers learn about a local real estate company that's differentiating themselves through the use of innovative technology. Event and recreational spaces Microbreweries are a big trend across the country, and they tend to attract a savvy, upwardly mobile clientele—an ideal real estate customer. A new agent at Sotheby's Tomlinson Group captured a local brewery as a way to break into the market and to introduce himself to the owner of the brewery. That introduction led him to listing the owner's house when the owner decided it was time to downsize. Theaters, concert venues, gyms, and other similar spaces are also excellent candidates for 3D reality capture. These popular locations service what equates to a large audience every year, many of whom will visit their website where your Matterport scan is located. That means this untapped audience will have the chance to see your 3D digital twin on a consistent basis and the opportunity to learn about your real estate business. Places of worship Sotheby's Tomlinson Group parlayed their digital twins of local schools into an opportunity to scan a 60,000 sq. ft. mega church and its 60,000 sq. ft. athletic facility. Along with building awareness for their brand, the scan is also connecting their community to church-facilitated services that they may not have otherwise known existed, such as substance abuse and domestic violence programs. "If you were to walk into this large church, try to figure out where to go to find those services, to familiarize yourself with what's available, or even to get the process started, it would be an intimidating process to go down that road," says Nitschke. The digital twins of the church helps community members understand what's offered, where to go within the church, and how to reach out. The church is even leveraging Matterport "Mattertags," to embed digital media (in this case video) into their digital twins. Every week, they add their sermons in a Mattertag for people who missed the service or want to listen again. Your office While creating 3D digital twins of local spaces is a great form of passive marketing, let's not forget one very important space you should also capture—your office. "It's fantastic to send out to clients so that they know where they're going to be going, where they're going to be meeting and take some of the apprehension out of that process," says Nitschke. Unlike your office, the digital twin is available 24/7, and it can help current and potential clients feel more comfortable with your business. Sotheby's Tomlinson Group has also scanned their title company and has future plans to scan their mortgage vendor's office, too. "When the consumer is getting ready to go to closing day, they're able to navigate the building where the title company is so they know where to go from the parking garage to the title company, what the reception desk looks like, what the conference room that they're going to be signing in looks like. It just takes a lot of that stress out of an already stressful situation by being able to walk them through," says Nitschke. How Can I Get Started? We've talked about capturing some very big, important spaces in your community. If that seems intimidating, it isn't. Starting with local businesses you're already familiar with will streamline the partnering process, but creating the digital twin itself is really quite simple. It's a natural step in building relationships for an industry that relies on that ability. "I'm finding the more that we get involved in these community spaces that are incredibly important to how and why and where people choose to live, the relationships start to build on one another," says Nitschke. "Shooting this facility ends up leading to an introduction to somebody to shoot another facility, and so we're kind of growing very naturally through collecting these spaces." Once you've captured your first community space, be sure to put it on your website and promote it wherever you can. Lisa Larkin's brokerage, RE/MAX Select, has even created a website dedicated solely to 3D tours of local spaces, as well as a Facebook page for that website. An easily accessible collection of 3D digital twins of community spaces also helps real estate consumers get a better sense of what a neighborhood's all about—far better than traditional real estate tools and MLS data can. Traditional tools offer "no depth to what a community is all about, and this allows us to give them a much better idea of what the difference is between some of these neighborhoods," says Nitschke. For more in-depth information about capturing community spaces, including marketing strategies, check out our recent webinar here. And try Matterport yourself with your free Matterport account to get started with 3D differentiation.
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Safe Selling: Stay Out of Outbuildings!
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Building Your Value Through Conversation
As marketers continue to saturate every corner of the internet--and social media--we are finding that organic engagement is becoming a greater challenge for small businesses. With over 4 billion internet users, roughly 3 billion users on social media, and a staggering 5 billion mobile users, more people are online than ever before. So businesses should have no trouble reaching incredibly large audiences, right? If that's the case, then why is organic engagement such a struggle? Let me give you a little history, then a few solutions, especially for smaller businesses!
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Using Slack to Help Run Your Real Estate Business
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8 Things New Users Should Know About RPR
If you're new to RPR–welcome aboard! RPR is committed to helping you become a more efficient and more skilled real estate agent. We know you have a lot riding on your next deal (maybe your first!), which is why we built the nation's largest property database. RPR provides the data, tools and reports to help you wow your clients and close more deals. Designed exclusively for REALTORS®, RPR is included in your NAR membership dues, and requires no extra fees or upgrades. Simply go to narrpr.com and get the login process started. In no time, you'll be searching properties, creating reports and delivering data-rich, high-quality, professional-looking materials to your clients.
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5 Important Tips When Hiring a CPA to Prepare Your Taxes
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5 Real Estate Branding Mistakes that Can Cost You Business
Building a recognizable brand your clients can connect to is one of the most important things you can do for your business. Everyone knows you should be unique and offer great service, but many brands start off by making the same mistakes. To help you start your real estate branding journey on the right foot, here are a few common missteps and how to avoid them.
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How to Kick Start Your Real Estate Career on the Right Foot
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9 Underutilized Websites that Can Help You Generate Real Estate Leads
Online real estate lead generation can be a grind. Everyone knows the main strategies: Google and Facebook ads, Instagram posts, etc. It can be difficult to get an edge because the competition is fierce, not to mention the cost. But not everyone needs to market on oversaturated social networks and platforms. In fact, there are plenty of underutilized websites that can help you generate real estate leads. Here are nine examples that are ready for a savvy real estate agent to exploit.
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4 Things to Consider When Evaluating Advanced Virtual Tours
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To Call or Text? The Value of a Hybrid Approach
In real estate, it's all about that first impression. A strong first touch and effective follow-up are critical for converting leads to clients. So, we've been gathering data to learn what methods work best for lead conversion. Unique Benefits of Calling vs. Texting With recent floods of robo dialers and spam calls, it's easy to see why texting has become a popular choice for agents. Texting has the advantage of delivering messages with high open rates versus calling, which requires an answer to get the conversation going. With a text, you also have the ability to show and not just tell. You can easily include links to properties, your website, etc., without the added step of an email. Another advantage that almost goes without saying is that texting is the preferred method of communication for millennial and Gen Z consumers. And generations across the board have grown more comfortable with texting with businesses. In fact, a recent study showed that 39% of businesses use texting to talk to customers. [Zipwip, 2019] However, phone calls oftentimes still reign supreme in the minds of real estate professionals. Why? Because they're in the business of relationships. The human-to-human connection is where they thrive. We hear it all the time; "If I can just get them on the phone, I'll close the deal!" So, what's the most effective approach? We recommend a hybrid approach. Based on our data, a text-to-call strategy works really well. Leverage the automation, consistency, and high open rates of a text message to start the conversation and build that trust to then invite the lead to a phone call. Use the text to introduce yourself and immediately display value. Then, schedule a call or (better yet) bring the text conversation to a point of engagement where the phone call actually feels natural and easy. Looking for the perfect text script? Here are two top-performing openers from the texting data we've collected. 21.38% Engagement: "Hi (visitor name), this is (agent name) with (company). I wanted to send you some listings. Which neighborhoods are you looking in?" 41.42% Engagement: "Is this (visitor name)?" Let BoomTown handle the outreach for you. Here's a trend that I've noticed in my 10+ years of working alongside real estate professionals. The most successful agents and brokers tend to do these three things: prioritize their time based on dollar-productive activities, leverage the value of their database, and diversify and grow their lead sources. Agents should be out in the field, going to appointments, shaking hands, making connections, closing deals. Not bogged down in the trenches of follow-up. But, those texts and calls that engage new leads are critical for building a healthy book of business. The reality is, most agents simply don't have the bandwidth to keep up with it on their own. That's why BoomTown recently announced a new program called Success Assurance. This program uses a lead concierge to handle the qualification and initial follow-up for you. Allowing you to jump in when the leads are ready. We're gathering data and feedback from our clients to continuously improve the lead engagement experience and boost lead conversions. Those clients of ours who have taken advantage of the Success Assurance program have already seen remarkable results and we're excited to empower agents in this new era of technology that works smarter and harder. Discover What's Possible with BoomTown! Request a Demo To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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NAR Launches a New TV Ad Campaign
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Are You Undisruptable?
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 at 12:00 PM PST The real estate industry is under siege from disruption in the form of iBuying, discount commissions and technologies being funded at unprecedented rates. The agents who are most adaptable to change, can establish themselves as trusted advisors, and create the most remarkable consumer experiences will always be relevant. In this webinar, we will discuss what the pros are doing to become undisruptable through proper planning, business strategies, systems and accountability. Register now!
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iBuyers: The Pros and Cons Your Next Seller Should Consider
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How 5G Mobile Will Benefit Your Real Estate Business
In an earlier article, I committed to a monthly update on 5G, its status and how it directly affects you--or, for most of us, doesn't affect, as of the end of January 2020. We need to outline what 5G means to us and if it changes the way we conduct business. To understand what 5G is compared to 4G, there are three major components we need to consider: speed, capacity and latency. Let me take each area and look at what 5G will do for us:
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Create Compelling Listing Presentations with Tools from RPR
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10 Ways Virtual Staging Can Make You More Money
Real estate is an old school business, but adopting new technology is having a huge impact on savvy agents' bank accounts. Don't get stuck in the past. Here are just a few ways virtual staging technology can make you more money.
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If You're Not Real Estate Blogging, Do It Like a Giant FAQ
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2 Secrets to More Lead Conversions, Straight from a Top Team's Playbook
Lauren Bowen leads one of the most productive real estate teams at Robert Slack. She's increased conversion rates and productivity while the company nearly doubled in size. The secret to her team's success? They stalk their real estate leads... or, more accurately, they let their lead generation solution do it for them. Targeting the Most Likely Buyers Anyone who has spent any time on the internet has been "stalked" by an online ad. You visit a site once, and for days or weeks after, an ad from that site follows you around the web. This is called "ad retargeting," and marketers love this advertising strategy because it is so effective. The Lauren Bowen Team employs this strategy to great success via realtor.com's Local Expert program. Local Expert users can create three types of ads: For Sale ads, Just Sold ads, and Branding ads. Those ads are then displayed to buyers in your chosen area on realtor.com. Once they leave the site, those same ads are displayed in their Facebook feed. "This not only helps bring a buyer to the house, it also shows the seller that we are putting it in front of numerous buyers for them," Lauren says. Tip: Because Local Expert offers detailed campaign analytics, you can impress your sellers by telling them exactly how many people have seen their home's ad. Dialing Up Lead Volume for a Higher Conversion Ratio Lauren's team may have stumbled on another secret to improved conversion rates when, thanks to the success of their realtor.com program, they decided to increase their volume of leads. This lead to a curious phenomenon. The team's number of lead conversions not only increased—as expected with more overall leads coming in—but their conversion ratio increased as well. That means the team is converting a higher percentage of leads than they were at their previous lead volume. "We've almost doubled our conversion ratio with the same leads," says Lauren. See Lauren THIS THURSDAY at Inman Connect NY Want to hear more real estate lead wisdom from Lauren? On Thursday, she'll be sharing her expertise during a panel discussion on the Team Track at Inman Connect New York. Check out her panel, Lead Distribution: Who Gets What?, on January 30!
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9 Do's and Don'ts of Excellent Customer Service as an Agent
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8 of the Best Real Estate Logo Design Ideas
You likely already know that a logo is an important part of any business's branding. Not only does it make your modern real estate company stand out from the competition, but a solid logo can attract and win over new customers. That's what we're always aiming for, right? But it's tricky to design a custom logo for your real estate firm. You'll need to think about the colors, fonts and shapes you're using--not to mention arranging each individual element to create an impressive design. So, we collected eight of the best real estate logos to help inspire your own.
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Safe Selling: Opening a Lockbox and Door
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Real Estate Agents' 2020 Market Predictions
Will 2020 favor buyers or sellers? What will be the biggest barrier to homeownership this year? What can agents do to prepare first time buyers? We asked over 400 real estate agents across the country what they think will happen this year. Do their predictions match what's happening in your local area?
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Run Your Real Estate Business with a Smartphone: Recap
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Should I Join a Real Estate Team?
As a real estate agent, you have to make a lot of decisions about how your business will operate. You have to pick a brokerage, decide if you want to become a broker, start a team, work from home, choose an office, and that's just the beginning. One of the things you should no doubt put some time into considering is joining a real estate team. While it's not for everyone, there are some pretty good perks to joining a real estate team. There are also several factors to consider if you think it might be the right fit for you.
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Who is Your Ideal Real Estate Customer and How Does Your Website Serve Them?
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Tips to Present Your Listing in Its Best Light
At BoxBrownie.com, we (unfortunately) see hundreds of photoshoots where homes have been presented poorly and agents are missing the chance to showcase the property in its best light. Having magazine-ready imagery is crucial in marketing the home effectively and gives you the greatest chance to receive the best price. In this post, we analyze 10 images from a recently listed home, and our co-founder, Brad Filliponi, outlines key areas to help present the property to get the best result.
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5 Ways Using RPR Will Impress Your Clients
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Marketing to Millennials: Identifying Trends for Future Homebuyers
It's no secret that millennials are buying homes later in life than their predecessors. The reasons are the usual suspects -- rising costs of living, housing costs, and student debt. Identifying trends and patterns with millennials can be a powerful tool when marketing to this generation's homebuyers and closing deals. Check out these trends and see how you can use them to your advantage!
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How to Actually Generate Good Quality Leads on Facebook
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4 Skills That Will Catapult You to Success
Would you like to make 2020 your best year ever? It is a time to leap, yes 2020 is a leap year, and your opportunity to leap into spectacular performance in all areas of your life. Make the first year of the decade one worth remembering. Here are the top skills that will greatly enhance you in every area of your life:
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Safe Selling: Dealing with the Dangers of Master Suites
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Instagram's Latest Change: What It Means for Your Business
Since its founding in 2010, Instagram has become one of the top social media platforms in the world. According to Hootsuite, Instagram attracts one billion users each month. A recent announcement from Instagram's CEO, Adam Mosseri, shared that the platform would be removing public likes. In a follow-up tweet, the company said they wanted users to "focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get." Their main focus is to make users' well-being and mental health a priority, rather than popularity.
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Run Your Real Estate Business with a Smartphone Using Cameras and Scanners
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Friday Freebie: Business Planning Checklist for 2020
There are 15 days left in January--and 15 items to check off in this week's Friday Freebie. Today, we're highlighting a free business planning checklist that agents can use to make sure their business is prime, commission-earning shape for the year ahead. Read on to learn how you can end the first month of 2020 poised for success. Free 2020 Business Planning Checklist, courtesy of Homes.com Have you ever heard the phrase, Plan your work and work your plan? It's somewhat of a mantra at the RE Technology office. That's because we know that goals are never achieved without a plan to achieve them. But planning can be intimidating. That's why we like this week's Friday Freebie. It's a 15-item checklist from Homes.com that breaks down the work of preparing for a new year into small, manageable tasks. That way, you won't get overwhelmed and give up before even starting. Aim to accomplish one task every day starting today, and your business will be in tip-top shape once the real estate market starts to warm up again. Here's a sampling of checklist tasks: Update personal information on your website and social media channels Research competitors' advertisements and content for new ideas Add customer reviews to your website Take a new headshot Pretty painless, right? If you're ready to take on the new year, download Homes.com's 2020 Business Planning Checklist today!
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How 3D Tech Is Ensuring Accuracy and Transparency in the Transaction
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3 Big Tech Trends: What's ahead for 2020 and beyond
Famous physicist Edward Teller once said, "The science of today is the technology of tomorrow." Both science and technology are making breakthroughs at a record pace today. The result is an increase in the velocity of new technology designed to improve how we live and how we work. What's on the horizon are technologies that promise to improve the real estate business for agents and consumers alike. Here is a sampling of remarkable technologies we will see in the next year and beyond that will impact us all at work and at home.
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1 Big RPR "Wow" Moment and 5 Closed Deals
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6 Ways to Improve your Real Estate Email Marketing
If you're not seeing results with your real estate email marketing, it's time to ask yourself a question. When is the last time you updated your email marketing strategy? To keep your audience interested in your messages, and engaged with your brand, it could be time to shake things up! To help you, we're sharing email marketing tips from Trish Barry of Mastermind Consulting, along with our own suggestions!
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Read This If You Use a Mac, iPad or iPhone
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Is Your Listing Description Turning Consumers Off?
Imagine if you had a magic power to know exactly how readers would react to the description text that you write about your new listing. "This lovely two-bedroom fixer-upper..." According to research from ForSaleByOwner.com, the word "fixer-upper" is a horrible term. In fact, even buyers who say that they want to buy a fixer-upper are not likely to react positively about a property being called a fixer-upper. The study found that for consumers over the age of 45, "turnkey" is the most desired feature they seek out in their next home. That is probably a good word to use in your property descriptions. Now think a bit further about how you are going to market the property. Think first about the age of the likely homebuyer. If they are between 45-64, they are probably juggling kids in high school or college, have been promoted to the most stressful job of their career, and have little time for anything other than family and saving for retirement. They do not want homes that require a lot of work or maintenance. Great schools are also a key priority, not surprisingly. Instead of hesitating to share school information, do the work to verify what school district your property falls under. It's also ideal to share not only the district, but the specific schools that children will attend. Districts can have great variations in the quality of schools. The research also revealed that men and women have different priorities when choosing a home. Men are most interested in a property that their partner loves and that provides an easy commute and great schools. Women, on the other hand, are interested in a turnkey home in move-in condition. Men and women share strong interest in a close commute and great schools. If you would like to download the entire study, you can click here.
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Safe Selling: Why Bedrooms Are a Danger Zone During Showings
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Profiting from the iBuyer Trend
It's no secret that iBuyers are expanding their reach in the real estate market, often causing agents to worry about their place in the industry. In the most recent Secrets of Top Selling Agents webinar, Anthony Lamacchia shares his secrets for working with iBuyers in "Worried about iBuyers? Well they aren't going away!" Lamacchia is the Broker/Owner and CEO of Lamacchia Companies in Boston, Mass. He also owns Lamacchia Property Management, Lamacchia Development, and REAL Training Systems Inc. As an advocate for real estate-related topics, he is an expert in the industry. In 2018, Lamacchia was nominated for Inman's Most Innovative Broker/Owner for his REAL Training program and expanding platform of "how-to" videos for agents. In his Secrets webinar, Lamacchia shows what agents and brokers can do to thrive during the growing iBuyer phenomenon and get a cut of the marketing trend.
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Run Your Real Estate Business with a Smartphone Using Video Conferencing
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Success Story: "Nightmare" Breakup Leads to Happy Ending
This week's Success Story has a plotline like a romantic comedy: it involves a breakup, the realization of a mistake, and a happy ending. Our hero in this week's story is Veronica Figueroa, leader of top Orlando real estate team The Figueroa Team. Find out how she met her ideal real estate match, what happened when she left that real estate platform to try something new, and how a reunion got her business back on track. Playing the Field Veronica partnered with real estate CRM and marketing platform BoomTown in 2012. After five years, she decided to leave BoomTown to try something new—and to make sure she was providing her team with the best technology possible. At the time, she was seeing new features, like text message marketing, crop up in other CRMs across the industry. But communication is important in any relationship, and rather than checking to see if these new features were in development at BoomTown (which they were), she moved her team to a new platform. In fact, BoomTown had recently released two game-changing new features. Success Assurance offers the perfect mix of tools and services to handle lead generation, expert lead qualification, and lead management, serving conversation-ready prospects to agents. Additionally, Marketing Central allows clients to generate more leads and listing opportunities through a self-serve advertising portal. "I didn't dive deep enough to say, 'When is it coming? How do we make this still a part of our future even though we don't have it now?' I was impatient. I fell victim to just chasing that shiny object," she says. The Grass Isn't Always Greener Unfortunately for Veronica's bottom line, those shiny objects didn't do her team any favors. Rather than the 500-600 transactions they typically completed in a year, The Figueroa Team plateaued at just 300-350 transactions after the technology change. "I didn't realize how much we damaged our business by making the switch. I mean, it meant removing everyone off our website—people that we have been nurturing for so many years. It meant disrupting my team. It meant losing the opportunity to stay connected with consumers—trying to shift them over to another platform," she says. Not only that, Veronica couldn't help but compare the new platform to her ex-platform—and the comparison didn't leave the new platform looking so good. "I was basically measuring them to the standard of BoomTown and that's when I knew instantly. This is a nightmare," she says. "We could have done so much more, and how many lives could we have impacted? How many more careers could we have helped if we would have stayed put?" Returning "Home" to the Right Partner "Partner" is the key word in Veronica's reunion with BoomTown. Rather than just being a useful technology tool, BoomTown acts as a partner that offers support services, success management, coaching, and more. "That's why we chose to go back to BoomTown. We knew we needed a system we trusted. We needed to feel protected and safe in that area of our business with our team, making sure that business was just flowing naturally, organically with the new changes that we were going to make," Veronica says. "I guess I felt like I had to be doing something new and fresh at all times, but I realized that can be a part of our business, but it can't be a part of disrupting our systems, because our systems are the foundation of our business. We came back to BoomTown because BoomTown was a solution for me to be able to run my business with ease, and for me BoomTown is home." Watch this product tour to learn how BoomTown can become your partner in success. Can't decide which BoomTown product is right for you? Compare packages.
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Your Smart Home Primer
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Repurposing Your Listing Photos: 3 Timeless Shots that Live on Beyond the Sale
Real estate is a hyper-local business, and your photos should help you sell your expertise in your market. Prove that you're a specialist in everything from the architectural style of homes to the natural scenery and popular hot spots by getting extra mileage out of your listing photography. Repurposing your listing photography investment can save you money on an independent lifestyle shoot. Ask for these three shots from your real estate photographer to use on social media, your website and print marketing materials:
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Tips for Taking Full Advantage of Matterport's Digital Twin Toolbox
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How to: 3 Steps to Investing in your Real Estate Business this Year
This is a new year, which means all the more reason to hit the reset button and start prioritizing. If you haven't already done so, you may ponder the thought of refreshing, re-evaluating or even starting your real estate business, and this is the perfect year to do so. But the question is, how do you start investing in your real estate business and where do you start? The solution is an easy one and we have a few tips that may help you out.
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RPR Commercial: 3 Ways to Start 2020 on a High Note
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Safe Selling: How to Keep a Safe Distance from Prospects at a Showing
Let's talk about safe spaces--and, no, we don't mean that kind of safe space. In this case, a "safe space" is a healthy amount of distance that you should keep between you and prospects during a showing. As we know, a certain amount of distance makes good safety sense. But how close is too close--and how can you tell if you're far enough away to reduce your risk of being attacked by a predator posing as a prospect? In this week's Safe Selling episode, find out a quick and discreet way to make sure you're staying a safe distance away from a client. Watch the video above to learn more! Next week: Why bedrooms can be a danger zone during showings—and how you can navigate them safely.
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51 Content Ideas for Your Real Estate Newsletter
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2020 Hindsight: Game-Changing Tech and Tools from the Last Decade
The New Year is a great time to look back and remember how far we've come. We've put together a list of some of the most game-changing tech that was born this last decade as well as some that could prove big in the next decade. How has this technology changed the way you do business?
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Run Your Real Estate Business with a Smartphone: Building Social Media Exposure
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5 Ways Real Estate Agents Can Hit the Ground Running in 2020
Real estate agents know there's no such thing as a slow season for them. During the winter months when most markets are quieter, agents need to be ramping up their marketing and prospecting efforts so they have a deep well of leads going into the busy spring season. While the season is slow for your clients, move fast to hit the ground running in 2020 with these five real estate tips:
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Run Your Real Estate Business with an Android Phone using Email, Messenger and Text
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6 Creative Ways to Freshen Up a Stale Listing
Even a great property with professional marketing can fly under the radar in the real estate world. According to Zillow, the average home was on the market for 68 days last year. But anyone who has bought or sold a house before knows things can happen much faster or slower. If you are struggling to find the right buyer for your for-sale property, you are not alone. Below, you will find six tips to bring new life to your listing.
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Real Estate Advertising Using Your CRM (Real Estate Marketing Ideas)
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How to Keep Your Email Marketing Simple
When an online form prompts you for your email address, we're quick to feel guarded and protective of giving away this type of access, whereas in the past it was given without a second's worth of thought. The reason for this hesitation is because people are tired of being sold to and bombarded with these in-your-face marketing messages. They're tired of giving away their information and allowing you to commandeer their digital peace. This reluctance is still prevalent today, but when you've unlocked the idea that email is to further your relationship with your reader rather than to pitch them, you've entered a dangerous level of freedom with how and what you communicate.
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The Importance of Self-Care for Real Estate Agents
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How to Fit Prospecting and Farming into Your Marketing Budget
No leads, no business, right? True as that might be, it's hard to put numbers to the value in seeking leads. How much of your time should you dedicate to prospecting marketing each week? And how much of your overall real estate budget? This is our quick guide to making those decisions.
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Run Your Real Estate Business with an iPhone Using Email, Messenger and Text
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Winning More Listings through Teamwork and Technology
"We're just not into selling," isn't something you expect to hear from a real estate team. But that's exactly what Gabriel Dusharme and Brian Voigt of The Voigt Advantage team have to say about their approach to business. Instead, the pair prefers to focus on caring for their clients and guiding them through the home buying and selling process. That care extends to the technology they use to get their clients' homes in front of as many buyers as possible. In this interview, Dusharme and Voigt share how they leverage technology to drive a positive client experience.
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[Best of 2019] Listing Agents Offering 1% and $1 Commissions: Is This a New Trend?
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[Best of 2019] 7 Google Sheet Templates for Real Estate Businesses
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published in January and is #2 in our countdown. See #3 here. In the real estate world, there's no telling what will come up or what you'll have to tackle in any given day. Fire drills aside, it's crucial to have a base plan for your business. A cozy home of organized data to fall back on. But fret not. If you're not the savviest when it comes to spreadsheet sorcery, Google Sheets has you covered. They have a library of pre-made templates to help make organizing your business (and your workouts, finances...life!) much much easier.
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[Best of 2019] 5 Things an Agent Should Never Say to Leads and Past Clients
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[Best of 2019] Headshot Ideas from the Pros: Stand Out from the Crowd
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published in September and is #4 in our countdown. See #5 here. One of the biggest agent concerns is finding ways to stand out in the crowded marketplace of other agents. Why, then, do so many agents copy other agents? From websites to scripts, originality is sabotaged at every turn. And this is most apparent when it comes to an agent's photo. Nine photos out of 10 are absolutely identical. The hands are either on the hips or arms are crossed. Is it any wonder that consumers have the notion that all real estate agents are alike? Step away from the pack during your next photo shoot. Here are some ideas from the pros.
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[Best of 2019] 19 Real Estate Memes and GIFs that Will Make You Smile
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[Best of 2019] Facebook Business Pages: 4 Hidden Features to Boost Visibility
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published in January and is #6 in our countdown. See #7 here. Want to maximize your presence on social media as a brokerage or individual agent? A Facebook Business Page is a great starting point--so long as you're venturing past the default settings. Whether you recently set up shop or your business has lived on Facebook for a while, fine-tuning your page with the following tools is a must. Learn how to customize your layout, communicate with customers, compete for business, and analyze trends:
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[Best of 2019] Friday Freebie: Downloadable Report for Home Buyers and Sellers
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[Best of 2019] 10 Real Estate Email Subject Lines and Why They Work
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published in April and is #8 in our countdown. See #9 here. The average user sends and receives over 100 emails every day. The odds that they will open every email they receive are slim, especially if they're wary of unknown senders. So, how can you ensure that your audience is opening and reading your carefully crafted emails? The answer lies in the simple, unassuming subject line. While most email subject headlines are less than one or two sentences long, they can spell the difference between a read message and another junk email. About 80 percent of readers never make it past the headline, or in this case, the subject line. Here's how you change that. Here are ten real estate email subject lines to help you master the art of the email.
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[Best of 2019] 10 Real Estate Apps that Will Amplify Your Productivity
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Safe Selling: How to Maximize Your Visibility During a Showing
The appointment is set, and you've just arrived ahead of your prospect for a showing. Beyond previewing the home to learn its layout and features, this is the perfect time to prepare the listing so that you're safe during the showing. How? As we've learned, the first step is to open all the blinds and turn on all the lights so that neighbors can see in. The next step? "Blocking" your presentation. "Blocking" is a theatrical term that means planning where you're going to stand. In the case of real estate, that means planning where you're going to stand during different segments of your showing presentation. Watch the video above to learn: Why windows are your key to staying safe Why it's important not to stand somewhere you can't be seen from the outside of the listing The red flag that predators may display when you've denied them an opportunity to attack Next week: Why you should take the literal "high ground" when showing a home or meeting with new prospects.
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[Best of 2019] The Top 6 Things Agents Need to Know about PDFs
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Christmas Lights Brighten Your Real Estate Business
Most real estate markets slow down in the weeks leading up to Christmas, but that doesn't mean it's time to stop working on your business. Come December 26th, buyers will be out in bulk, ready to find a home for the new year. One option to get into the holiday spirit and meet potential buyers and sellers is to showcase neighborhoods that have gone above and beyond this season with beautiful displays of Christmas decorations.
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Run Your Real Estate Business with a Smartphone using Information Management
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Is Your Headshot Killing Your Business?
We've all seen them: Realtor headshots on for sale signs, bus benches, business cards, you name it. But do they actually make an impression on potential buyers and sellers? In an industry where a Realtor's image is their brand, it's hard to think that those carefully crafted photos are a waste. To find out if a real estate agent's photo, whether it be a selfie, cartoon or glamour shot, was affecting the amount of business received, Transactly set out to poll potential buyers and sellers from across the US.
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Free Real Estate Marketing Strategies
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A Guide: How to Become a Real Estate Agent
So, you've heard you can make a good living as a real estate agent, and you think you have a decent sense of the real estate agent job description. But how do you get in on the agent life? Taking clients around to find their dream house may be a highlight of the job, there's a lot more to the role! As an agent, you'll need to know how to review property values and sale prices. You'll need to make recommendations for listing prices and bids. You'll need to learn to estimate your own real estate salary according to expected commissions and plan your finances accordingly. You'll need to be ready to work through negotiations, which can get thorny and drawn out. You'll need to know neighborhoods and cities — not just the perks of living there, but also any laws and regulations related to residential real estate, too. No wonder the job requires a real estate license! There's a lot to learn, but the job is ultimately a rewarding one. Here are eight important steps for how to become a real estate agent:
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