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Opendoor and Cloud CMA Partner to Give Agents More Options to Sell Homes
When W+R Studios launched iBuyer Connect in October of last year, our vision was to provide Cloud CMA subscribers with an easy way to connect with iBuyers. With this tool, agents could go to their next listing presentation with options, rather than just a suggested list price. On average, our subscribers publish over 260,000 reports per month, and we recognized an opportunity to simplify the process of soliciting a cash offer.
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3 Creative Ways to Deliver Your Next RPR Report
In a fiercely competitive real estate market, it's important to do everything you can to stand out. Meeting your clients when and how they prefer, with extra special touches, could serve as your tipping point. Here are three simple, creative ways to deliver your next RPR report that will definitely distinguish your services as unique.
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Are You Keeping Home Sold Price Records?
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Cloud CMA Resets UI to Drive Usability and Growth
WAV Group has known the founders of W+R Studios long before they broke away from eNeighborhoods and founded the company. The partners have invested their lives and careers in developing real estate software that makes a difference. Cloud CMA was their first product—mobile friendly, easy to use, beautiful CMA reports. They launched at a time when building a CMA on your phone or tablet was impossible. They took a mobile-first approach and were able to drive market adoption with impressive speed. Funny anecdote: One of the best products from their days at eNeighborhoods was Wyldfyre CMA, the market leader in allowing agents to build CMAs with data across multiple MLS markets. Cloud CMA has spread like wildfire for sure. My favorite feature of Cloud CMA is the ability to send an email to Cloud CMA with a property address in the subject line, and get your CMA emailed back to you in less than a minute. No login required. I also like the feature that allows you to automate the process of sending a CMA to past clients every month. Since W+R Studios launched Cloud CMA, the company continued to listen to the market and launch additional apps for real estate that carries the company's mantra – mobile first, easy to use, and fast. Their additional products are Cloud Streams and Cloud Attract. Cloud Streams is a listing alert system that notifies clients when new or updated listings match their home search. Cloud Attract is a marketing tool for lead generation that delivers an instant CMA to consumers that's beautifully branded to the broker and agent. Old User Interface The old user interface was intuitive and easy to use. The primary navigation tabs across the top give agents quick access to the key features of CMA applications – CMA, Buyer Tour, Property, and Flyer. Recent activity allows the agent to scroll though their past reports and quickly access it. Notice all of the colors – black, different shades of green, orange, shades of grey. Visually, even though this layout was clean by comparison to many competitors, there was a lot going on. New Design As you can see from the new design, the functionality is the same. They dropped the "Cloud CMA" product name. They eliminated the tabs, but the functionality is in the same place. They made the UI of the reports tiled and allow the agent to take action like view PDF, play slideshow, or share the report quickly. Noticed that they changed the name "Recent Activity" to "Recent Reports," because that is what they were displaying – reports, not activities. I am not a big fan of the Scale icon because it is repetitive. If it showed the report cover, then it makes sense. This tile system is often called Kanban and can leverage photos to drive user recognition fast if executed correctly in design. It is all very nice stuff. Support and Cross Sell We all know that agents typically only use about 20 percent of the features of software. The way to drive deeper adoption of features is to constantly educate the agents inside the product. Cloud CMA does this with the two articles that you see herein – the Facebook article and the photography website article. To the right of those articles is in-product marketing that supports their other products – Cloud Stream and Cloud Attract. I presume that agents who subscribe to these services will see a single sign-on link that will launch them right from within Cloud CMA. Of course, another important feature is connecting with the customers. Here you see a note from Frances with an offer. But it can also be leveraged for support. There are many choices for CMA tools in real estate. The one that you choose will depend on the individual needs that you have as an agent, or for your brokerage. We strongly urge clients to take a fresh look at competitive CMA vendors every few years to make sure that the tool you are using now has the best set of features for the best price with the best support.
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4 Tools for Spot-on Property Pricing
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16 Ways to Make Your CMA Presentations Pop
When it comes to presentations, you have to put your best foot forward. Every other agent out there (more or less) is doing them digitally too, so in order to stand out, you have to do more. Chances are your presentation tool auto-generates them based off the MLS number you plug in and voila, a perfect presentation with no editing needed! While that's already a powerful tool, some customization is important in making you stand out above the rest. We've got you covered with tips on seller, buyer, open house, and all other presentation types. Try these to stand out:
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[Best of 2017] Must-Have Pages for a Winning CMA
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Friday Freebie: The Realtor Tool that Creates Killer CMAs
We've recently been talking a lot about CMAs—from which pages to include to how to use a CMA in conjunction with a landing page to attract seller leads. Many people use a dedicated CMA tool, like Cloud CMA, to create their reports. But did you know there's another tool that all Realtors have access to that can create knockout CMAs, too? And that, best of all, it's absolutely free?
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Friday Freebie: Try the Cloud Agent Suite at No Cost Until 2018
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Prospecting for Seller Leads with a CMA
Yesterday, we talked about landing page strategies for capturing buyer leads. But what if you'd rather focus your marketing efforts on seller leads instead? How does the process differ? Let's start by first thinking about what a buyer wants versus a seller. Buyers want a home that matches their criteria for price, size, location, etc. You can offer them this by providing a landing page that lets them search for properties or sign up for listing alerts. Sellers, on the other hand, want their home to sell for as much as the market will bear. To attract seller leads, agents often set up a "What is my home worth?" landing page that offers homeowners a free, automated home valuation report. They can use this landing page in conjunction with digital ads, print marketing materials, and more. In addition to using an IDX solution to create landing pages, we talked yesterday about leveraging Cloud Attract, a made-for-real-estate landing page tool, in conjunction with Cloud Streams, a super-fast listing alerts and property search app. But Cloud Attract has another side that you can use to attract sellers. Rather than using Cloud Streams with Cloud Attract, agents can use Cloud Attract with Cloud CMA, a tool highlighted in our 2017-18 Technology Guide.
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Must-Have Pages for a Winning CMA
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8 RPR App Tips and Tricks
You know that little thrill you get when you come across a tip or trick to help make your app experience just a tad more efficient? Like pressing the app button for a shortcut to a favorite feature, or swiping to the left to quickly save for later? Every app has tricks of the trade, yet, for some reason, they don't always appear magically on our radar. This post will give you eight tips to make sure your next RPR app experience is a productive one.
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Steal this Idea! How to Generate 300 Leads with Cloud CMA
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How I Talk About Automated CMAs in My Non-disclosure State
by Realtor Tom Riggins I work in Texas, which is a non-disclosure state. Because sellers are protected against having to disclose the final sales price of their home, the automated home valuations in my area can vary. While we've all had days when Zestimates set unrealistic client expectations, agents and brokers in non-disclosure states feel that heat more often than not. SmartZip works to use local mortgage data and transaction prices from sellers who choose to make it public record, and their algorithms "borrow" pricing information from other similar homes nearby. As a result, their estimated home values are much closer than some other big-name companies who offer automated CMAs. But I'm not here to talk about algorithms, I want to talk about how any agent can convert a client who gets a low automated home valuation. Here's a recent email I got from a respondent in my farm:
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Seller Lead Strategy #2: Go beyond the basics to create compelling calls-to-action
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Sales Are Looking Up!
Every Monday thru Friday at 10:30 AM PST Are you ready to start writing more offers and winning more listings? Then join me, Gary, at one of our free, live, Cloud CMA webinars hosted daily! Come see why over 100,000 real estate agents nationwide are using Cloud CMA to write more offers and win more listings. I'll take you through a complete overview of Cloud CMA and show you just how easy it is to start looking awesome in front of clients and prospects, today! The topics we'll cover include: Cloud CMA setup Overview of the Cloud CMA user interface How to create Cloud CMA reports How to share your Cloud CMA reports Creating and sharing reports from your smartphone (it's a little bit like magic!) And even show you how to do a listing presentation with our Interactive iPad CMA! Register now!
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Sales Are Looking Up!
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Best of 2016: 4 Lead Generating Scripts for Listing Agents
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published back in April and is #8 in our countdown. See #9 here. Southern California based Realtor April Kass had to get "comfortable being uncomfortable" when it came to door knocking and asking homeowners certain questions. She pushed through her discomfort, however, and signed 16 listings and closed 9 escrows in her first year in real estate. Part of her secret to winning so many listings is how she approaches those in-person conversations with homeowners. Kass likes to door knock around properties she's just listed or just sold because that gives her a very specific reason to talk to homeowners in an area without coming across as too pushy. During a webinar last week, Kass shared the basic scripts she uses for drumming up seller leads via open houses and door knocking. We were flooded with requests from agents who wanted a text version of her scripts. Well, ladies and gentlemen, ask and ye shall receive. Here are four scripts April uses to generate seller leads in person. Door Knocking Before an Open House This easy script takes only a minute or two. Kass finishes it by offering a CMA to neighbors who may be thinking of selling soon. She also says it's a great tool for trying to break into a new neighborhood. "It just starts putting your face out there so you become that local market expert." Hi, I'm April Kass with the Dave Wright Real Estate Team. You know, we just listed a house down the street at 333 Main St. We're having an open house this weekend, so I'm just knocking the neighbors to invite you to our open house and find out who you know who might want to move in to your neighborhood. Who do you know from work, from school, etc.? [Homeowner answers.] Great! You know, a lot of times in this market we've got multiple buyers coming in, and this isn't going to be the right house for everybody. Who do you know around here that's looking to sell their house? Have you ever thought about selling or have any of your neighbors mentioned it?
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Best of 2016: How to Educate Buyers to Make Good Offers
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Friday Freebie: Try Cloud CMA at No Cost Until 2017
The folks over at Cloud CMA must be in a giving mood this holiday season, because they're offering an extended free trial for their entire suite of agent products through the remainder of the year. If you've ever wanted to give their well-regarded apps a try, now's your chance--all three are free to agents until 2017. Read on to learn how you can claim your trial(s) today. Cloud CMA, Cloud Streams, and Cloud MLX: Free Until New Year's Of the three products offered in the Cloud Agent Suite, Cloud CMA is the one you've probably already heard of. Powered by MLS data, Cloud CMA let agents create beautifully designed CMAs, buyer tours, property reports, and flyers within minutes from any device. The app also offers a "What's My Home Worth?" landing page that helps you find seller leads. This marketing tool invites homeowners to get a quick home valuation in exchange for their contact information, and is free with every Cloud CMA account. To check out all that Cloud CMA offers for yourself, sign-up for their free trial here. Want to give your buyers an edge over the competition? Cloud Streams, the next component in the Cloud Agent Suite, can do just that. Cloud Streams offer hyper-fast listing alerts--faster than any of the big property portals and even your MLS. Any time important listing information changes, like price, your client is alerted instantly via email or text. The alerts come complete with property photos and a description so your client can make better and faster decisions about a home, as well as save properties for future reference. Agents can see all of their clients' activity through a dashboard for insight into their property preferences and engagement levels. And, bonus, agents can add Cloud Streams' free lead generation widget to their website to offer potential clients real-time listing alerts. Interested in trying it out? Sign-up for the Cloud Streams free trial here. If your MLS's interface is about as attractive as the 30-year old wallpaper in your mother-in-law's kitchen, Cloud MLX may be just what you need. The final piece of the Cloud Agent Suite gives you full access to your MLS's core functions, but lets you search the MLS via a beautiful and functional interface. There's even a social feature that lets you follow and interact with other agents. To take your MLS search experience from boring to beautiful, try Cloud MLX free until 2017 today!
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Creating More Dynamic Presentations with Cloud CMA
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How to Build a Winning Brokerage (10/4)
Tuesday, October 4, 2016 at 10:00 AM PDT Learn from industry expert Greg Fischer and W+R Studios' own Ricardo Bueno on tools and tactics used by today's leading brokerages. We'll discuss topics like branding, tools for brokers, how to stay ahead of the competition, and how to recruit and retain the best to build your brokerage into a winning team! Register now!
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Sales Are Looking Up! (9/19-23)
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Tools and Tips for a Winning Listing Presentation With RPR® (9/19)
Monday, September 9, 2016 at 12:00 PM PDT Sellers want to know your listing presentation is based on a keen sense of the market, an expertise in determining value, and your ability to bring a deal to closing in the shortest time and at the highest price possible. Learn how to create a winning listing presentation using modern marketing approaches such as RPR's Preparation, Price and Promotion model. This free workshop will highlight the RPR assets found within each of these successful strategies, including: Researching the property, neighborhood and local market Earning seller buy-in from the onset Validating the property's basic facts, selecting comps, and adjusting those comps to create a customized and flexible comp analysis Using the one-and-only Realtor Valuation Model®—an exclusive RPR pricing tool Generating a customized, client-friendly, and definitive Seller's Report Realtors Property Resource® (RPR®), one of the most innovative benefits included in your NAR membership, is offered at no additional cost. Register now!
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Sales Are Looking Up! (8/29-9/2)
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Sales Are Looking Up! (8/8-12)
Every Monday thru Friday at 10:30 AM PDT Are you ready to start writing more offers and winning more listings? Then join me, Gary, at one of our free, live, Cloud CMA webinars hosted daily! Come see why over 100,000 real estate agents nationwide are using Cloud CMA to write more offers and win more listings. I'll take you through a complete overview of Cloud CMA and show you just how easy it is to start looking awesome in front of clients and prospects, today! The topics we'll cover include: Cloud CMA setup Overview of the Cloud CMA user interface How to create Cloud CMA reports How to share your Cloud CMA reports Creating and sharing reports from your smartphone (it's a little bit like magic!) And even show you how to do a listing presentation with our Interactive iPad CMA! Register now!
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Sales Are Looking Up! (7/4-8)
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Tools and Tips for a Winning Listing Presentation With RPR® (6/16)
Thursday, June 16, 2016 at 12:00 PM PDT Sellers want to know your listing presentation is based on a keen sense of the market, an expertise in determining value, and your ability to bring a deal to closing in the shortest time and at the highest price possible. Learn how to create a winning listing presentation using modern marketing approaches such as RPR's Preparation, Price and Promotion model. This free workshop will highlight the RPR assets found within each of these successful strategies, including: Researching the property, neighborhood and local market Earning seller buy-in from the onset Validating the property's basic facts, selecting comps, and adjusting those comps to create a customized and flexible comp analysis Using the one-and-only Realtor Valuation Model®—an exclusive RPR pricing tool Generating a customized, client-friendly, and definitive Seller's Report Realtors Property Resource® (RPR®), one of the most innovative benefits included in your NAR membership, is offered at no additional cost. Register now!
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Sales Are Looking Up! (6/6-10)
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Seller Servicing and Marketing Your Listings (6/2)
Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 10:00 AM PDT Listingbook automates servicing sellers, keeping them happy while educating them about their market. This allows agents to be more efficient and profitable.In this session you'll learn: How to give sellers accounts How to ensure they're logging in How to create and send a CyberCMA How to explain reports (both Basic and Pro) How and when to promote your listings Register now!
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Getting Started with Listingbook (5/31)
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Help Your Seller See the Light on a Realistic List Price
But in 2003, we upgraded the bathroom, built a jungle gym and put in a new dishwasher. What REALTOR® hasn't felt challenged during pricing discussions with homeowners in a similar situation? And why wouldn't an average homeowner expect to earn a return on home improvements? Thankfully, there is a common ground when it comes to landing on a solid listing price. Here are five proven tools and techniques for guiding your seller in the right direction. Getting real on the value of home improvements Flushing out what qualifies as an appreciable home improvement can be a sensitive issue. Homeowners who have put a lot of effort into converting the garage to a family room or the third bedroom to a new master closet may not want to hear that their "new addition" actually depreciates the home's value.
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4 Lead Generating Scripts for Listing Agents
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10 "Power User" Features of the RPR App
The RPR app and busy REALTORS® have much in common. Mainly, they are each constantly in motion. We know that to keep up with an agent's need for quick access to property and market trend data, the app must continually build in new features and related usefulness. Fast forward, here are the top 10 features of the RPR app power users should know about, including some important new enhancements. 1. Choose your start screen When you first open the RPR app, the default screen shows recent activity around your location. Although if you find yourself searching for properties by address more than your location, change the default home screen. First, swipe left or right to find the screen you want to see first when you open the app: Search, Nearby Properties, Local Market Data. Once you've landed on the screen you want to see first, press the home icon in the top right for two-seconds. It will turn green, and confirm the change.
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One Question that Can Generate More Seller Leads
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How to Educate Buyers to Make Good Offers
As Realtors®, you see this again and again. As a listing agent, you are required to submit all offers to your seller, even the lowball offers. It is a horrible situation for the agent. Indeed, it is probably a horrible situation for the buyer’s agent, too. It is embarrassing for a buyer’s agent to submit a lowball offer to a seller. As the listing agent, you need to reinforce the price. Respond with the data that was used to set the listing price. You did a CMA, just update it with current comps. When you counter to the buyer, include the facts that support your pricing. The buyer’s agent is unlikely to argue, especially if you are drawing those facts from the same MLS. Another piece of information that you may want to include is the graph showing the sales price as a percentage of the Original Price. The graph above is a good illustration of this. Real estate professionals understand that there is seasonality to pricing. You can see that the spring market is hotter for sellers than buyers. The buyer market gets slightly stronger in the fall, and is red hot over the holidays.
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Sizing up RPR's Property Details Page
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Best of 2015: Discussing the Zestimate in Your Listing Presentation
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published back in April and is #7 in our countdown. See #8 here. As a real estate agent, you understand plenty about the real estate market. One of the more awkward experiences that you can have is discussing the Zestimate in a listing presentation. The best way to discuss the Zestimate is to go in prepared. It is likely that your prospect has already looked at the Zestimate or discussed it with another REALTOR® or a friend anyway. Step 1: Getting Prepared Although it seems pretty logical, many real estate agents do not take the time to look up the Zestimate of the subject property before going on the listing appointment. You should. The Zestimate on an unlisted home is a published price opinion. It factors into the opinion of value on a property. You may even begin by asking the sellers what they think of the Zestimate price as a way to open the pricing discussion. Step 2: Explaining the Zestimate The Zestimate is the efforts of savvy mathematicians to crunch together a bunch of information about property to predict home values and home value trends. The subject property is a data point. There are two considerations of value. The sales happening around the home and the attributes of the property like the size of the lot, the square footage of the house, the year it was constructed, number of beds, baths, garages, etc.
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5 RPR® Report Customizations You May Not Be Using
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RPR's New iPad App: What It Can Do for REALTORS®
It's been almost a year since Realtors Property Resource® launched its smartphone app, RPR Mobile™. This month, the company released a version of RPR that's optimized for iPad and Android tablets. With this latest iteration, REALTORS® can now access RPR® on all of their iOS and Android devices. Bill Lublin, CEO of Century 21 Advantage Gold in southeastern Pennsylvania, was among the first to test out the new tablet-optimized app. "The RPR Mobile iPad app and Android tablet app is really nice because it allows you to be collaborative at the scene," he says. "[It] brings you and the consumers into a sort of a conference huddle type of mode where you're discovering information together, you're helping them understand the information that they're looking at. And that's building trust, building mutual experience, and making the entire process smoother for everyone that's involved." For more on Bill's experience with RPR Mobile, see the video below: Bill isn't the only REALTOR® to sing the praises of RPR's mobile solution. "RPR came to life when the app was released," top agent Dale Chumbley told us in an interview earlier this year. The app is a potent resource on the go because it weds smartphone capabilities to all of RPR's analytical, search, and report generating features. For example: Text: Users can generate reports on the fly and instantly text or email them to clients and prospects. Call: Every property listing on RPR Mobile has a click-to-call button. Just click this button to contact the agent and schedule a showing—all without having to search for or dial a phone number. GPS: RPR Mobile taps into your phone's geo-locational capabilities to let you search the homes around you to view a property's details and estimated value. This is especially helpful when trying to understand property values in a neighborhood. Camera: Let's be honest—a lot of MLS photos are just plain terrible. Fortunately, you can add your own photos to any RPR report. Use your phone's camera to snap better images of a property and add them to a report directly from RPR Mobile. You can use this feature to prepare reports for homes that are not yet on the MLS, too!
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Refine the RVM® with These 6 Home Upgrade Tips
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Discussing the Zestimate in Your Listing Presentation
As a real estate agent, you understand plenty about the real estate market. One of the more awkward experiences that you can have is discussing the Zestimate in a listing presentation. The best way to discuss the Zestimate is to go in prepared. It is likely that your prospect has already looked at the Zestimate or discussed it with another REALTOR® or a friend anyway. Step 1: Getting Prepared Although it seems pretty logical, many real estate agents do not take the time to look up the Zestimate of the subject property before going on the listing appointment. You should. The Zestimate on an unlisted home is a published price opinion. It factors into the opinion of value on a property. You may even begin by asking the sellers what they think of the Zestimate price as a way to open the pricing discussion. Step 2: Explaining the Zestimate The Zestimate is the efforts of savvy mathematicians to crunch together a bunch of information about property to predict home values and home value trends. The subject property is a data point. There are two considerations of value. The sales happening around the home and the attributes of the property like the size of the lot, the square footage of the house, the year it was constructed, number of beds, baths, garages, etc.
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Best of 2014: Prospecting with a CMA
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Cloud CMA Webinar: Sales Are Looking Up! (8/4-8)
Cloud CMA is hosting a webinar every day, Monday through Friday! When: Monday thru FridayTime: 10:30 AM (Pacific Time Zone)See what all the fuss is about! REGISTER HERE for the 10:30 a.m. PST Session Cloud CMA is generating a lot of buzz in the real estate industry. Inman Next named it one of the "Top 5 must-use Cloud Based Technologies for REALTORS®." Join us for this half-hour webinar that will give you an overview of Cloud CMA. This webinar is perfect for anyone wanting to learn more about Cloud CMA or new Cloud CMA subscribers wanting to get a jump start on using Cloud CMA. The webinar will be hosted by Chris Morgan from W&R Studios, the creators of Cloud CMA. Participants will be able to ask questions at the end of the session. Topics include: Cloud CMA setup Overview of the Cloud CMA user interface Creating Cloud CMA reports Overview of Cloud CMA report content Viewing and e-mailing Cloud CMA reports Creating and sending Cloud CMA reports from your smartphone What you will need to participate: The webinar will be hosted straight from your browser, so you will not need to pre-install any viewing software on your computer. You will need to call in to a conference line. A confirmation e-mail will be sent to you with the web site address for the webinar, and the conference line number. Sales are looking up! See you there!
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Competitive Market Analysis 101
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Product Review: Listingbook
You've probably heard the old cliche, "Buyers are liars." And if you've worked in real estate for any length of time, you probably have first-hand experience with this cliche in action. Does this sound familiar? Your clients give you a list of criteria describing their "perfect home." When you find a property that closely matches those criteria, your buyers tell you they're not interested. Or how about a client that finds their dream home online, but thanks to inaccurate data, discovers it's no longer available? In that case, third party websites are the liars. In either case, agents face challenges in finding clients the home that they actually want, while providing them accurate and timely information. Those are the obstacles that Listingbook aims to overcome. Listingbook is a "client servicing platform" that allows agents to move clients and prospects off of public websites and onto a private search environment. That platform gives agents detailed insight into what their clients and prospects are searching for and makes it easy to collaborate and communicate with them. Agents are able to see all elements of consumers' search criteria, as well as properties they've viewed, favorited, and rejected. There are several ways to experience Listingbook--as a buyer's agent, as a listing agent, and as a consumer. Let's take a look at all three.
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New CMA Strategies to Get More Listings
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Prospecting with a CMA
Everyone wants to know what their home is worth, not just those who are thinking of selling in the immediate future. After all, their home is probably their most valuable asset. A report that helps them better understand that value is a very compelling offer, one that will help you secure their contact information and use additional marketing techniques to earn their business. 1) Knock on doors. Let's face it, most of us hate doing this, but it's a great way to build your client base. If you're looking to drum up business in a specific neighborhood, go door-to-door. Have a CMA prepared to hand to them if they are interested. With new clients, especially, it's important to include your branding on the CMA. You want to make it as easy as possible to remember your name. This example is from Cloud CMA. 2) Make a few calls. Don't feel like pounding the pavement? As the saying goes, let your fingers do the walking. Use the phone numbers in your CRM to call homeowners and volunteer to send them a report that explains their home's value.
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Using Your iPad with Buyers
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Instant Gratification
When I was a child, my parents were constantly encouraging me to "delay my gratification." Wait until after dinner to eat that cupcake, rather than scarfing it down this afternoon. Don't flip to the back of the book to find out what happens; read through the whole thing. They spent nearly two decades teaching me to delay my gratification ... and the Internet taught me the exact opposite in moments. The Internet has created a society that expects (read: demands) instant gratification. As a real estate agent, understanding this and building strategies around it can help you rise above your competition. I was inspired to write this article after talking to Greg Robertson of Cloud CMA. He was talking about how quickly their reports can be created. "If you're on the phone or meeting in person with a prospective client and you tell them you can create a report that will help them understand, just for example, your listing price recommendation, they'll want to see that report right away. How wonderful to be able to create that report with a single click and to show it to them right then and there." The reports can be sent via email as an attachment or displayed on the iPad as a presentation. "Never again will you make a client wait until you get back in the office to share your CMA with them. You can create and share any Cloud CMA report by simply sending an email." Of course, these days, fast doesn't count if it's accompanied by low-tech. A piece of junk isn't going to please your clients, no matter how quickly they receive said piece of junk. The reports from Cloud CMA have the added benefit of being aesthetically-pleasing and mobile – two things that also matter to our tech-savvy society.
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Choosing Comps for Your CMA
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Get Reacquainted with Cloud CMA
If a product is popular, you'll hear it talked about often – in articles, on social media, and among your friends. Such is certainly the case with Cloud CMA. It's easy to assume that, because you hear about it often, you know everything you need to know. The truth, however, is that this is a powerful tool, with substantive functionality to offer, and it deserves a closer look. The Goal Remains the Same At Cloud CMA, their goal is to "make you look awesome in front of your clients." If this sounds familiar, that's because it has been at the core of what they do from the beginning. The reports you print directly from the MLS are stale, say the folks at Cloud CMA, and don't offer any opportunity for your unique branding. Their solution was built to fix this problem. Although Cloud CMA reports are much more aesthetically pleasing than what you'd get printing straight from the MLS system, they are populated by MLS data. They also incorporate data from other sources like Walk Score, Yelp, and Education.com. Users can also add to what comes from the MLS, such as additional photographs. Cloud CMA is a cloud-based tool, so there's no software installation required. It works on Mac or PC operating systems and all major browsers. You can use Cloud CMA on your mobile device or create a report on your smartphone simply by sending an email with a property's address. Mobile functionality doesn't end there. The CMA report can be presented on an iPad or other tablet.
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Best of 2013: How to Lose a Listing
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Agents as Liaison between Client and Contract
So many real estate processes have been digitized and automated – it's understandable that many professionals and consumers are afraid that the personal element of real estate is getting lost in the shuffle. You, the real estate agent, have the power to be the solution to this problem. You can demonstrate that technology will enhance personal connections rather than diluting them. Real estate agents have to have two very distinct, often contradicting skill sets. You need to understand the nuts and bolts of impersonal legal documents, but also have a warm and appealing interpersonal style. Technology shouldn't further separate these two sides of your personality. Instead, it should be used to draw them together. Contracts are where this fusion can really be seen. They are notoriously confusing to a layperson, so your buyers or sellers need your support in making sense of them. It's a perfect opportunity to enlighten rather than push-away your client – and technology can help. "There's no replacement for responding to your clients' questions or concerns," says Greg Robertson of Cloud CMA. "But there are ways that technology can be used to enhance and support this response. Cloud CMA was built with this in mind. Reports are approachable for the agent's consumer."
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How to Lose a Listing
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Banish "One Size Fits All"
Prepare yourself for a shocker: your clients want you to listen to them. Perhaps you've heard this a few times before; but all too often, buyers and sellers feel unheard and unappreciated. Agents can fall into a "one size fits all" approach, losing their edge and their clients in the process. Instead, you can show your clients that you see them, hear them, and appreciate them by crafting a strategy that is unique to them. Need proof of how unique we all are? Just look at the way we decorate our homes. If you visit your buyer or seller clients in their home, you can't help but notice the art they've put on display, the type of furniture they've chosen, and the colors they've painted the walls. Is the style modern and minimal? Is it classic and traditional? You don't just need to extrapolate about a client's preferences based on their interior design choices. If you listen, they will tell you exactly what they like, what they dislike, and what they want from you. You can use what you learn to create a unique strategy for their real estate purchase or sale. How It's Done There are countless opportunities for customization in your dealings with buyers or sellers, many of which are possible through technology. Here are just three examples.
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6 Tips for Streamlining Your Workflow
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3 Ways to Set Yourself Up for a Successful Listing Presentation
This post comes to us from the Cloud CMA blog: Around the office here at W&R Studios, we often talk about our "Past," "Present," and "Future Selves" and what we can do to position the future version of ourselves for success. This happens primarily during our monthly brainstorm sessions for blog and social media content. By choosing and scheduling blog topics in advance, we are setting up our "Future Selves" for better blog writing sessions. Rather than having to sit down and wonder, "What should I write about today?" the topics are already laid out and we simply need to execute. "Past Frances" sets up "Future Frances" for more efficient blogging. While this might sound silly, it's a way to think about how you're going to stay ahead of the game. Be prepared and envision yourself successfully completing your task. Now, let's apply this concept of "past, present, and future selves" in the context of your listing presentations. Listing presentations are a big deal, so this is your opportunity to take some time and set up your "future self" – the one that goes to the listing presentation – for a successful meeting. Here are three ways to set yourself up for a successful listing presentation.
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RPR Success Stories. Are you next?
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5 Reasons why your next listing presentation should feature RPR
You know that old saying, "You only have one chance to make a first impression"? Well, it couldn't be truer than when describing a listing presentation appointment. You must show up prepared. You need to stand out from all the other agents the sellers are interviewing. You must prove your local market expertise. Without a doubt, you know you're the best REALTOR® for the job, but you must convince the sellers. You need a comprehensive, yet easy-to-understand report. You want something impressive, something to make you stand out. Enter Realtors Property Resource, NAR's national parcel-centric database containing over 150 million properties. As a member benefit exclusively for REALTORS®, not only does RPR has all the data you need, but in a format sure to impress even the most picky client. Consider this: 1. An RPR Seller's Report can be quickly run on over 150 million properties in the country and includes data such as mortgage information, distressed information, tax assessment history, historical photos, and more. 2. An RPR Seller's Report shows detailed market activity over time, showing your clients exactly what is going on in their neighborhood. Do your sellers live in an area with many distressed properties? Are homes selling quickly with multiple offers? Charts, graphs and detailed market information are automatically included in the RPR Seller's Report.
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Friday Freebie: Cloud CMA Power Pack
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Choosing a CMA
If you've ever felt lost when researching real estate programs or apps--good news. We're publishing a series of "Buyer's Guides" that feature important questions to ask and options to consider before making a new purchase. These are mini versions of our 2013 Technology Guide, each focused on a specific category of product. Today, we're kicking things off with a guide to CMAs. Read on to learn more. What is a CMA? CMA stands for Competitive Market Analysis. Traditionally, these reports for seller clients provide recent comparable sales and allow agents to craft their own recommendation for listing price. However, as a product category, it is quickly expanding to include a variety of other reports for both buyers and sellers, often automated to require minimal input from the agent. Questions to Ask There are some important questions to ask when buying any real estate technology product and some that are unique to choosing a CMA. First, let's look at general questions you'll want to ask. What are my objectives for this piece of technology and will this product help me achieve those objectives? What is my budget? Does my broker, MLS, or Association have any agreements with any vendors that might help me obtain this product at a discount or for free? Does this product work with my current computer operating system? What kind of customer service and training programs are available? Are there webinars and, if so, are they recorded so you can view them at any time? Is the vendor's online help sufficient? Is this technology Web-based? If it is, how much functionality will be available when the tool is being used offline.
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Secure a New Listing in 4 Simple Ways
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The Top 5 Reasons to Use Cloud CMA (+ 3 Bonus Ones)
We were delighted when we saw Cloud CMA's new promotional video last week. Short and snappy, it gives viewers five reasons to use the program--and reminded us just why we've been fans for several years. If you're new to Cloud CMA, the video is a fun introduction. We can think of more than five reasons why you should use Cloud CMA, though! Here are just a few: Ease of use: You don't need much information to get started. Create reports just by entering a property's address or MLS number. Multilingual: Reports are available in both English and Spanish--an potent feature in today's increasingly diverse market! It Connects to Your MLS: Gone are the days of entering MLS data into your CMA solution. Cloud CMA automatically leverages MLS information to create beautiful reports. But you didn't come here just to hear our reasons. Click through to the next page to view Cloud CMA's video and see the top five reasons to use it as your CMA solution.
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A ‘CMA’ for Buyers
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How “healthy” is your RE business?
This post comes to us from Frances Brittle of Cloud CMA: We all know the importance of keeping our minds and bodies healthy, but do you ever think about the "health" of your real estate business? Health is defined as existing in a state of being that is free from illness or injury. Naturally, your real estate business will never catch the flu or break a bone, but business can certainly decline or become non-existent. In both scenarios, there are contributing factors outside of our control. We can't do anything about the genes we received at birth, or magically change the state of the housing market, but we can do something! Of the things we can control, our input directly affects our output. Eating more fruits and veggies combined with exercise keeps our minds and bodies in a healthier state, but what about your real estate business? Throwing carrots at it won't really help, but you can choose to invest wisely in your business. You can do this by incorporating quality tools into your daily activities to drive your business objectives.
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3 Tips for Practicing Effective Communication
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Product Review: Cloud CMA
If you're in the market for a CMA product, you've likely heard of Cloud CMA. It's gaining buzz as a fast, easy, and aesthetically pleasing tool for sharing reports with buyers and sellers. In today's product review, we'll look at the report sets available within Cloud CMA, some key features of the product, and guide you through your next steps. The Basics Unlike many CMA products that require a manual transfer of information from your MLS to your CMA tool, Cloud CMA is already connected to your MLS. Cloud CMA leverages MLS data, as well as data from other sources, to create informative reports that agents can use to educate and better serve their clients. Cloud CMA currently works with more than 50 MLSs nationwide (including Rappatoni, flexmls from FBS, and Paragon by LPS) and continues to expand into new markets. Curious to see whether or not Cloud CMA is available in your area? Click here to see the drop-down menu of available MLSs. Report Sets 1. CMA When creating a CMA report in Cloud CMA, you have two methods for obtaining comparable properties. You can either enter specific properties by their MLS number or perform a "quick and dirty" proximity search. As with any CMA, you have the ability to customize the recommended listing price. Once the report is generated, it will include supplemental pages such as, "What is a CMA?" and an Online Valuation Analysis page. These additional pages contain information from top rated sites all over the web.
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Friday Freebie: Cloud CMA
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Choosing a Valuation Tool: CMA vs. AVM
With so many technologies available to real estate agents today, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the terminology and the options. You can hardly determine which technology to choose, let alone how to use it once you've made your choice. Whenever you have these sorts of questions, your broker and your peers can be great resources. But so can we! That's why we're going to continue our trend of comparing product types and explaining different vendors for each. We started along these lines with our comparison of transaction management vs. document management, and today we'll continue with CMAs and AVMs. Valuation Tools CMAs and AVMs are both valuation tools. Let's look at each of them more closely to clearly understand the difference. Competitive Market Analysis (CMA). A CMA is generally used to aid in discussions about the value of an owner's property and the best potential list price. The key here is that the agent prepares the CMA, providing comparable recent sales and their own personal recommendation for listing price. The recommended listing price is based on the comparable homes and the agent's own insights. Automated Value Model (AVM). Already, you may have spotted the key differentiator between a CMA and an AVM – an AVM is automated, meaning that the agent's role in creating the AVM is passive. AVMs rely entirely on mathmatical models to produce an estimate of the value of a home, rather than adding an agent's insights. Many AVMs are available directly to consumers (Zillow's Zestimate is one example of a frequently-used consumer AVM). Now, there's a lot of variation between the products within each of these categories as well. In order to better understand what they do, we talked to a few of the companies that specialize in this area.
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RPR Agent Case Study
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2 Ways a CMA Can Generate Leads
Give me one moment, and I'll get to the lead generation. First, I think a brief definition of CMA will be helpful. A CMA is a competitive market analysis. It provides information about recent sales, homes currently for sale, and other data about a specific geographical area. When used in a listing presentation, your CMA will combine this data with your pricing recommendation and your strategy for selling the home. Okay, okay, you want leads. Let's get to it. 1. Use a CMA to encourage repeat business. Let's say you helped Mr. and Mrs. Smith purchase a home last year. On the anniversary of that transaction, prepare a CMA for the home that they purchased. You don't need to put a price on their home for this CMA. Instead, you can allow the prior sales and homes currently listed to demonstrate the price spectrum in the neighborhood. Mail (or email) this CMA to Mr. and Mrs. Smith with a heartfelt note. Use the data in your CRM to remind you about the specifics of the clients and the transaction. Provide specific details to show that you remember them.
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