Monthly Archives - April 2018

Real estate continuing education

How to Better Help Your Buyers in a Seller’s Market

Right now, experts claim that we are living in a seller’s market. That may be good news for some, but what about those looking to buy homes? While sellers may have the upper hand, real estate agents still need to look out for their buyers. The biggest challenge may be figuring out exactly how to do this.

What Is a Seller’s Market?

As part of your real estate continuing education, you have likely heard the phrases ‘seller’s market’ and ‘buyer’s market.’ In a seller’s market, the demand for houses exceeds their supply. With so many buyers interested in one house, you may not always have the opportunity to get buyers the low prices they would have received in days past.

While it may be a seller’s market, buyers are still relying on you. You can help your buyers navigate this market with a few helpful tips.

Know Your Buyers

First, you need to understand your buyers. More than one-third tend to be first-time buyers, which means they may need extra attention. The median age of first-time buyers is 32-years-old. Additionally, you should note that most real estate agents appealing to buyers use social media as a way to reach out to them.

You also need to know that in a seller’s market, many buyers may begin to think that renting a home may be a better deal. Appealing to buyer’s needs and desires may be the key to landing a sale. Spend time getting to know your clients so you can speak to their desires.

Encourage Flexibility and Readiness

When you are dealing with a seller’s market, your buyers need to be ready to make an offer at any given time. Flexibility is a crucial characteristic to have in the homebuying process, and the need to place an offer may occur at any time. Buyers also need to know that they are up against a sea of other buyers vying for the same property.

Stick to the Budget

Buyers are often on a strict budget, having already determined how much they are willing to spend. You may be tempted to encourage buyers to step outside their budget in a seller’s market, especially as the bids start pouring in. Contrary to what you may feel your real estate continuing education has taught you, the key is to allow the buyer to stay within their budget.

You can help your clients by pushing them to receive pre-approval for a home loan. Pre-approval will give buyers a specific budget and prepares them to walk away from homes that simply are not within their means.

Real estate continuing education

In a seller’s market, buyers need to make quick decisions.

Utilize Pre-Inspections

The more you can speed up the buying process, the better your chances are of landing the perfect home for your client. A pre-inspection prevents the need for further negotiation regarding the price of the home, and the process is advantageous for the seller as well.

Stay Educated

Real estate agents need to keep up with current trends and regulations. You can best help your buyers by staying in the know. Real estate continuing education is one way to do exactly that. Start your training today to see how you can prepare your buyers.

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Real estate CE

4 Reasons Real Estate Agents Should Join Their Local Chamber of Commerce

Even new real estate agents know that exposure and networking are the basis of success when you are running a local business. What many real estate agents fail to consider is the impact of joining city-specific organizations, including the local chamber of commerce. Is joining your chamber of commerce the right move for your business? How can you make this move cost-effective?

What Is the Chamber of Commerce?

The chamber of commerce is a local association that works to promote and protect the interests of the local community’s businesses. In return, members of the organization will pay dues. You can often join the chamber of commerce at different levels and price points, and you can choose how much you interact with the community through the organization.

The chamber of commerce typically pushes forward community interests. The organization represents the voice of the business community at large, providing unification.

Reason #1: Become a Participant in the Community

Many real estate agents are tempted to join the chamber of commerce because they want to build name brand association among locals. You will certainly find it advantageous to get your name out there.

One way to get involved with the community is to become a part of fundraising efforts for local schools and organizations. Your business has a lot to gain from demonstrating genuine care for other community members.

Reason #2: Create Networking Opportunities

Opportunities to network with fellow business owners do not necessarily come easily. Cold calling feels like a useless chore, and cold emails often go unanswered.

When you become a member of the chamber of commerce, you may receive free or discounted entries to local conventions and expos. At these events, you have a readymade reason to engage with other business owners in your community.

As a member of the organization, you may also have access to exclusive mailing lists allowing you to directly contact other businesses interested in what you have to offer. With this list, you have a better likelihood of reaching interested parties.

Reason #3: Establish Authority

One of the key components you learn in real estate CE is to establish a sense of authority with your potential clientele. You must show community members that you are an expert in the real estate field, building a strong sense of trust.

Studies show that a high percentage of consumers are more likely to think favorably of businesses if the owners are members of the local chamber of commerce. They are also much more likely to become a client of such a company.

Real estate CE

Establishing authority while remaining open to education from others is crucial for any real estate agent.

Reason #4: Learn from Other Business Owners

Many chambers of commerce host workshops and other opportunities for learning. You can see how other real estate agents build successful businesses, and you can also borrow ideas from firms in other industries. The key is to collaborate with other members of the community.

Whether or not you opt to join your community’s chamber of commerce, you have a lot to consider as your business grows. Education is one such consideration. Real estate CE does more than allow you to renew your license; it also allows you to develop into a more prosperous professional. Start your training today!

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Real estate continuing education

Top Legal Issues Real Estate Agents Encounter

Legal issues are a fact of life for many real estate brokerages and agents. Even with real estate continuing education, the laws surrounding the industry can be tricky. New real estate agents just getting their feet on the ground will especially find this to be the case.

The good news is that you can stay up-to-date on local, state, and federal laws. Understanding the guidelines that rule the real estate world will help you avoid legal issues that can ultimately swamp even the best agents and brokerages.

Misrepresentation

Misrepresentation is the most significant type of lawsuit brokers and real estate agents face. Typically, misrepresentation refers to misstating facts about features of a property, perhaps by claiming that the foundation or structure is in excellent shape when it is not. Real estate agents might perpetuate false information about the boundary line, roof quality, or pest issues.

Real estate continuing education often focuses on issues of misrepresentation because it is so common. In fact, many real estate agents do not know that they are misrepresenting a property. You can prevent problems like this by avoiding making predictions and by using seller disclosure forms.

Non-Disclosure

Failing to disclose the condition of a property is different from misrepresentation in that the agent is purposefully not revealing information. Non-disclosure may refer to issues like unpermitted renovations, easements, and environmental concerns.

Real estate agents can avoid getting into trouble about non-disclosure by using disclosure forms and providing evidence that you have informed the buyer about pertinent issues.

 Discrimination

Fair housing laws protect classes at different levels, ranging from state to federal. While these are not the most common lawsuits in the industry, the judgments resulting from the cases can be costly.

Discrimination can occur even when you write listings or make off-the-cuff statements like, “This house would be perfect for a couple with no children.”

Because laws are continually changing, real estate agents must pursue continuing education about fair housing laws and discrimination.

False & Misleading Advertisements

The listings and advertisements you use must be factual and accurate. Even Internet listings, as casual as you might think they are, must follow protocol. You cannot mislead a potential buyer in an attempt to lure them to a house they would have no intention of purchasing otherwise.

Not only must you comply with state licensing laws, but you must also abide by the Code of Ethics as a member of a real estate agency. You can also stay up to date on the laws of misrepresentation.

Real estate agents

Real estate agents need to understand legal contracts to prevent potential problems, but there is much more to learn about the law.

 Environmental Issues & Hazards

Failing to address environmental issues and hazards, like lead paint, contaminated water, and asbestos, can lead to a lawsuit against your brokerage. Additionally, real estate agents must know how to accurately address and disclose these issues.

Always recommend to buyers that they have a house evaluated and inspected. Real estate agents should never make statements about what a house “might” or “might not” have.

 The Importance of Real Estate Education

Ultimately, real estate continuing education can prevent many of these legal complications. In the end, studying these issues and knowing how to avoid them when you are in the field can save stress and money. Refresh your legal know-how and start your training today!

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Real estate continuing education

Top Tips for Real Estate Networking

Nobody can deny that real estate agents must become social creatures to be successful. Networking is a significant component of working in the real estate industry, and developing proficiency in this area is crucial.

The good news is that you do not have to be a natural in networking in order to maintain a successful real estate career. Many of the best real estate networking tips are those you can implement with time and dedication to your practice. These tips are sure to make you a better professional in your craft.

Tip #1: Create an Effective Marketing Plan

Every effective marketing plan will include a method for networking, which involves attending social events and even responding to emails quickly. Your plan should encompass every aspect of advertisement your real estate firm intends to incorporate.

The key to crafting a plan is to find a voice that feels authentic. Although your goal is to cultivate a network that will prove to be profitable to you, it is important to remember that your clients want to feel respected and genuinely cared for. All marketing materials should seek to entertain or inform first.

Tip #2: Establish an Online Presence

Interaction with potential clients and others online is essential to honing your craft as a real estate agent. Approachability is a major factor that contributes to people choosing to reach you, which means you might need to turn to social media websites like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to share listings and photos.

Real estate aggregators are also useful tools when you are trying to create an online persona for your firm. Do not forget how often buyers look at websites like Trulia, for instance.

Tip #3: Build Solid Listening Skills

Listening is an essential skill. Whether you are talking to potential buyers or you are at a real estate networking event discussing the latest trends, you must pay careful attention. Failing to listen properly means that you are missing out on networking gold.

Active listening requires you to use nonverbal cues, verbal affirmations, and questions to demonstrate that you are interested in the material another person presents in conversation.

 Tip #4: Follow Through

One of the worst mistakes real estate agents make is not following up with leads. True networking means that you take every step to reach out to leads, whether they are marketing professionals or possible buyers. An email, phone call, or text can make all the difference.

Real estate continuing education

One of the biggest components of networking is learning the significance of social cues. Real estate agents have to “read” people.

Tip #5: Become Part of the Community

While establishing an online presence is crucial, you must not discount the significance of becoming part of your community. Shining a spotlight on your local business makes you more appealing to other community members.

You might consider sponsoring a local sports team or volunteering for a cause in which you believe. Your firm might put advertisements on local radio and television stations or partner with other local businesses to find new leads. Some firms reach out to the local Chamber of Commerce in the search for additional options.

Tip #6: Stay Educated

One of the best ways to stay up-to-date on the best practices for real estate professionals is to pursue continuing education. In these courses, you may learn about anything from real estate marketing to ethical issues in the industry.

Real estate continuing education is an excellent way to stay on top of more than networking trends. No matter where your business operates, online courses are available. Choose your state now to learn what’s available.

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