Monday, March 31, 2014

First Quarter

Hello all,

"First Quarter"

Overall the weather was not our friend in the first quarter for the region. Year over year the number of transactions are down about 8% however the volume is up around 7%, this is due to the average sales price going up. With the prediction out there that the number of transactions will be going up by 10% this year I believe we are set up for a big second and third quarter. I am very pleased to say the year over year sales volume for the three offices is up 30% for the first quarter! This is because of the increase in sales price but most importantly agent growth. Thank you all for being the best of the best and being a part of our offices!

Enjoy the coffee,

Monday Morning Coffee
"Despair is the price one pays for setting himself an impossible aim." 
~ Graham Greene 
This weekly column often encourages you to reach high and focus your energy towards achieving your dreams. What happens when the dream eludes you, or you feel that you're not measuring up against the standards of your peers? 
Sometimes we do set our sights too high, or expect to reach them in an unreasonably short period of time. Just as important as establishing a goal is to map out an intelligent route. It's not usually all Super Highway between where we are and where we want to go. There are often plenty of other roads leading to and from that freeway, and you shouldn't drive 70 mph on a narrow two-lane country road! 
But... what better place to slow down and enjoy the scenery? It's these paths that define the greatest part of our experience, and we shouldn't overlook them because we're so focused on the ultimate objective. Strangely enough, the things we see and experience along the way often lead us to change our path - or even our destination. 
Ignore the worry-warts and over-achievers who want to know why it's taking you so darn long to get there. There is no time limit on success. You'll get there when you get there, and you won't be too old for it when you do. Success is sweet at any age, but it tastes best washing down a lifetime of experience, pleasure, and pride in one's work. 
Achievement is a certificate that never expires, and there's no "due date." With the right attitude, you'll find small successes every day to keep your outlook positive and your life moving forward - at your own pace. When you make it clear that you are in the driver's seat and enjoying the trip, others will find themselves wanting to get on board. Happy motoring! 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Marketing Agreement Disclosure

Hello all,

"Marketing Agreement Disclosure"

From behind closed doors we have heard that the RESPA police will be stepping up their game in the coming years. The major emphasis will be on the financial relationships between Mortgage Lenders, Real Estate Brokers and Real Estate Agents. However if the RESPA police start sniffing around I am sure this would spread to any and all Marketing Agreements. Having this knowledge along with the knowledge of the pending L&F lawsuit we have consulted with our Lawyers about the situation. They have reviewed all of our agreements, given the thumbs up but have strongly suggested we get a "Marketing Agreement Disclosure" together that will need to be signed by all of our clients. It will take a couple of months to make this happen but I wanted to give everyone a heads up that it is coming. It will need to be a part of your listing agreement, buyer broker agreement, rental leases... Anyone who is a client will need to sign it.

I also highly recommend if you have an agreement with an outside vendor that the agreement needs to be in writing and should be reviewed  by an Attorney.

Don't kill the messenger. 

Enjoy the coffee,

Monday Morning Coffee
“So is cheerfulness, or a good temper, the more it is spent, the more remains.”  
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
"If everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane." We've all read or heard similar humorous observations regarding the idea that, when all seems to be going well, it's merely the precursor to some sort of disaster. Unfortunately, many people seem to base their attitudes on that perception and, even more regrettably, they often permit such negativity to influence not only their lives but also the lives of others. 
Is it possible you’ve never been guilty of this transgression? When a colleague made a particularly impressive sale, did you ever say something along the lines of "Well, it'll probably take forever to top that one!" or "Too bad you can't do that all the time, huh?" 
Ever told someone going on a trip that you've been there before and had a terrible time? Even telling a child who brings home a good report card to "Keep it up!" can lessen the moment, because it implies that the current achievement isn't truly enough or that you fear poor performance in the future. Such statements carry “conditional approval” that demands future accomplishment as well. 
One of the keys to harmony, in the workplace or at home, is for everyone to feel good - about themselves and about their accomplishments. The next time you have the opportunity to make a comment, take a moment and carefully consider what you're saying - and how you're saying it. Squash any negativity right then and there. 
It's an attitude that’s easy to change once you're aware of it and its effect on those around you. Simply put, view the glass as being half full, not half empty. The power of negative thinking can make an even stronger impression than that of positive thinking, so be careful how you wield that power! 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Trinh Le

Hello all,

"Trinh Le"

In an effort to make everyone better and provide added services to the office we have subcontracted the services of Trinh Le to help you with the marketing of your listings if you desire. Trinh has been a long time friend of the office her talents have always spoke for them self. Below is a description of her services, bio and attached is a flyer. We are very happy to have Trinh helping us out!

With the Spring 2014 Market already in full swing and today’s clients very savvy, it’s crucial to have the right Marketing Tools! Have a professional writer provide those tools for your marketing materials!

Trinh Le, former editor/writer for The Gazette Homes section who has toured and written about hundreds of homes since 2004, will do a thorough walkthrough of any property and provide a detailed write-up. These write-ups focus on the home’s floor plan and architectural features, and any updates and standouts that will help SELL! The service is available for properties of any value and size.

FEES: * $85 per home for properties below $1 million
  * $100 & up for homes $1M and higher depending on the property’s extent. 
This is a minimal but important Realtor’s marketing expense, as today’s prospective buyers are well-educated and can be easily put off by grammatical, spelling and other errors in a Home Brochure, Flyer and other marketing materials.
To contact Trinh Le, send an e-mail to

Monday Morning Coffee
"Millions long for immortality who do not know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon."  
~ Susan Ertz, writer (1894-1985) 
Can you remember the last time you were bored? It’s kind of hard to pull off these days, what with DVD players in our mini-vans, BlackBerries in our pockets, iPods clipped to our waists, and cell phones that surf the net, take photographs, and download the latest sports scores. There are vast numbers of quick and easy diversions available to us at almost any time in almost any place. 
You’d think that these modern marvels would be welcome harbingers of the Death of Boredom. But does the quantity of the time we devote to such pursuits measure up in quality? In some cases, the argument could be made that doing nothing is indeed better than doing something, and that boredom may not be the adversary we’ve all been led to believe it is. 
Indeed, boredom is a kind of a dare unto itself. To quote journalist Michael Crowley, “It sets you up on a date with yourself and challenges you to find some chemistry.” Do you feel uncomfortable and awkward during those times when all is quiet and there is no opportunity to bombard yourself with the gadgets of work and of play? Can you make sense of the voice(s) in your head, or do you even want to hear it? 
Even Superman had to retreat to his Fortress of Solitude once in awhile! If you had time, just a little of it, to be alone and quiet, without any distractions, what do you think your mind would finally formulate? You don’t have to be a Luddite to appreciate the spiritual freedom you can feel when you escape from all of life’s electronic input. 
Fear of boredom may indicate a fear of oneself. Take some time to confront that anxiety. Sit down on the front porch, back deck, beach, wherever, and be quiet – very, very quiet. You may just hear your imagination calling you – listen! 

Monday, March 10, 2014

New Home Sales

Hello all,

"New Home Sales"

Personally I love new construction, nothing better than having ratified contracts that you know are closing 3,4,5 months from now. It is a great foundation to having a great month to build around. New home sales are coming back and coming back strong. With the low inventory of existing homes don't be afraid to talk about new construction with your clients. 3% of the base price can be a nice pay day... Below is an article on the state of the new construction market.

Enjoy the coffee,

Monday Morning Coffee
"The moment of change is the only poem." 
~ Adrienne Rich 
The beginning of Spring always seems like a good time to appreciate the changing of the seasons, and to ruminate on how the cycle of life continues. The shrubs and flowering plants are all green now, and we're just waiting to see those first beautiful blossoms that symbolize another cycle of death and rebirth. 
Sooner than we know it, Spring will blend into Summer, which will likewise end, and then Fall, and finally Winter again. While we certainly look forward to Spring during the chill of Winter, it must be said that even during the Summer we sometimes find ourselves longing for a view through the leaf-barren trees and the first flakes of snow. 
But we have to be careful not to look so far ahead that we're missing what's right in front of us! Don't wait to take an opportunity to watch the plants bloom and the hummingbirds return. Waiting until next Spring just won't do. 
Ponder how the fluidity of the seasons gives us the chance to realize change in our own lives. It teaches us to learn to accept how everything changes, everything passes, and everything eventually returns. It reveals a spirituality that goes beyond, and yet includes, any religion. We begin to recognize and embrace these ever-changing yet never-changing cycles in nature and ourselves. 
If you already abandoned your New Year's Resolutions a couple months ago, why not look at Spring as truly the ideal time to imagine changes you'd like to make? It seems to make more sense at this time of year anyhow, when everything is transforming and thriving and beginning anew, while Winter passes away behind us. And when Winter does come again, how will it find you different? Now is the "moment" to write the first line of your "poem of change." 

Monday, March 3, 2014


Hello all,


Inline image 1
Enjoy the coffee,
Monday Morning Coffee
"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."
 ~ Woody Hayes (Ohio State University Football Coach
and WWII Veteran) 
Have you noticed that there are fewer “losers” in schools these days? That there are more "awards" for achievement than actual accomplishments? There seems to be a trend developing whereby we are afraid to let our children fail. 
Are you successful simply because you do not fail? What of the lessons of disappointment that go unlearned? The highest achievers lack recognition, while those who place second, third or fourth still get gold medals! 
It’s no joke – a recent article about a rural youth horse show reported that all of the riders in the class who “placed” took home a BLUE ribbon. This is disastrous. What meaning does winning have when everyone is a winner? 
We’re robbing our children of the developmental opportunity to fail and then lose their fear of failing. They must lose the championship and learn that the sun will rise tomorrow, and that another season will come with its prospects for victory. 
Scientist and inventor Charles Kettering once wrote, “We need to teach… that it is not a disgrace to fail and that [we] must analyze every failure to find its cause. [We] must learn how to fail intelligently, for failing is one of the greatest arts of the world.” 
By all means, do encourage young people to try their very hardest and to enjoy victory when it is theirs. But do not try to protect them from the disappointment of failure when it falls to them. It is an absolutely critical building block in developing their ability to have faith in themselves. 
We love to see their smiles when they win an award, and we hate to see their despondence when they do not. Now let them experience those same contrary feelings, and continue their growth into the balanced and well-adjusted folks we strive to be!