Real estate agents often feel as though they can never quite shut off from work. There are always additional listings and customers to pursue, marketing plans to develop or a community to learn information about.
Finding and keeping work-life balance can be a challenge for real estate agents vying to close deals and, in the same breath, keeping their minds and bodies sharp.
Here are a few tips for maintaining work-life balance in a 24/7 job.
Establish Boundaries. In order to turn off after leaving the office, you need to figuratively turn off. That means setting rules for when you’ll check your work email, return calls, and be considered “on the clock.” While there may be exceptions every once in a while, if those exceptions become the norm, you can find yourself down a rabbit’s hole, sucked back in to work when you need time away.
Set Daily Tasks. Sometimes we fall behind by letting go of the simpler, routine tasks. Instead, take charge of your paperwork and administrative duties. Keeping on top of document filing, answering voicemails and emails, lead cultivation and calendar management can lend more sanity and structure to the day. Some people even schedule specific times each day when each of those items is tackled.
Plan In Advance. Friends and family members may not understand that work can crop up when it’s least expected. That’s why it’s a good idea to explain the need for advance planning for simple things such as dinner parties and tennis matches. Good friends and family members will understand the constraints on your time and help you schedule your leisure activities well in advance.
Schedule Time for You. Everyone needs some “me time,” and for real estate agents, it can be hard to figure out when to squeeze it in. That’s why you should schedule it. Book it as though it’s a critical work meeting and keep this time free for you and the things you love to (or have to) do. Stick to these times and every six months assess whether the amount of time and the timing is the right amount.
Be Realistic. When you schedule your time, don’t leave yourself 5 minutes to get to a listing 15 minutes away. Be sure to schedule in travel time, factoring in for distance, traffic, or that cup of coffee you need to get on the way. Try to avoid scheduling meetings back to back and be sure to give yourself some flexibility each day.
At the beginning of November, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices expanded their international reach to include a partnership with London-based real estate office, Kay & Co. This is the company’s second European franchise after partnering with Rubina Real Estate in Berlin, earlier this year.
Berkshire Hathaway has stated that they hope to add more offices in Milan, Vienna and Dubai before the end of 2018. The company is also in apparent talks with prospective partners in Paris and Madrid as well as looking at a possible reach into Mexico City, Hong Kong and Tokyo, according to Gino Belfari, President and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices.
What does this mean for Homesale?
As a Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty agent, this means that your listings will go global. As more and more international partnerships are created, Berkshire Hathaway affiliates could receive more traffic. This incentive can be used to persuade clients who aren’t sure what agency to choose. At Homesale, we already have a substantial international reach, as can be seen below in the November Market & Tech Stat, but with more Berkshire Hathaway offices popping up, our reach could increase drastically.
For a luxury certified agent, these ongoing partnerships could be key to your success as well. Belfari stated that “with so many buyers of high-end properties coming from outside the U.S., it became essential for us to be able to say we were global.” Anyone moving to the United States could potentially be swayed by a company name they recognize as one from their home country.
We’re looking forward to seeing the impact these partnerships have on our company and what the future has in store for all of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices affiliates.
To read the full article, click here.
There are two ways you can up your game when it comes to getting your listings noticed online. First, take optimal photos and visually attract potential buyers. Second, captivate them with entertaining and enthusiastic listing descriptions.
Go Au Natural
When possible, take photographs with all-natural light. Turn off the inside lights, tie back the curtains, pull up the shades and take the photos during the sunniest time of the day, around noon to one o’clock. The natural light helps everything look brighter and crisper, creating better, more appealing photos.
One of the best ways to get wide, all-encompassing shots, is to take photos from a kneeling position. Doing this makes the room look bigger since you are able to capture most of the space between the floor and ceiling lines in the final photo.
Using a tripod helps you plan, steady and execute your photographs with ease. You can practice your shots and adjust lighting or furniture as necessary in order to take the ideal photo without trying to remember the exact angle and position you were standing in.
Utilizing visually engaging technology is another great way to get your listings noticed. More and more, people are looking to watch video tours of the house, the property and the neighborhood. If the technology is available, take a drone video of the property to help potential buyers assimilate to what life would be like if they lived there.
If you feel that you have tried everything you can think of and are taking the best photos possible, but you still aren’t seeing the results you were hoping for, consider hiring a professional photographer. Professionals are trained to understand what makes a good photo and can work their magic on your listing.
Talk the Talk
Regular listing captions that simply describe the number of bedrooms and bathrooms within the home aren’t always enough to sell online viewers anymore. Get creative and talk about the interesting and unique elements in the home. Is there an abundance of natural lighting? Tell them! Does the house boast art-deco architecture? That’ll definitely appeal to people. A home is more than just square footage and potential buyers want to know that their future house is one of a kind, just like them.
A few months ago, Facebook was hit with a lawsuit by the department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that claimed Facebook was engaging in housing discrimination. According to the suit, HUD accused Facebook of allowing landlords, home sellers and agents to set parameters on ads that limited which prospective buyers could view it based on race, religion, sex and disability, to name a few.
Some of these allowances included blocking ads to users based on their interests in certain topics such as “child care” or “mobility scooters.” Others gave the advertiser the ability to block ads by specific zip code.
In response to this accusation, Facebook has changed their rules for ads related to real estate. Now, advertisers can no longer set these kinds of parameters and discriminate against any person based on race, ethnicity, color, national origin, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, family status, disability, medical or genetic condition.
What does this mean for you?
As a Homesale Realty agent, these new rules just mean that the more general your audience, the better. When setting the target audience for your ads, choose both men and women and select as wide of a geographical range as possible. Counties tend to work very well for the geographical parameter.
If, for some reason, Facebook thinks you have set a parameter that violates these new rules, they will flag your ad and send you a notification that it has been denied. From here, you can adjust the parameters and resubmit or send the ad for a manual review if you believe it has been flagged in error.
For more information about these new rules, check out Facebook’s advertising policies here.
The real estate industry is a huge target for wire transfer scams. It’s up to you to protect yourself and your clients, but how? What are wire transfer scams? How do you know if you are a victim? What should you do if it happens to you? Read below to find out more…
A Little Info About These Scams
These scams normally come from groups operating out of Ghana, Nigeria and other African nations. Individuals in these groups try to connect with potential victims through email and even on social dating sites in order to foster a relationship. The groups, as a whole, send out millions of emails constantly, waiting for someone to click on it. They are smart, creating believable stories about why they need bank account information and convincing the victim in the relationship that by divulging this information and partaking in this deal, they will be helping them out greatly.
How to Recognize One
Some scam attempts are obvious, but others can be unsuspecting. If you have an online friend who has started nonchalantly asking personal questions about your financial status, it might be a scam. If you received an email from an address you don’t recognize, it might be a scam, but if you’re not sure, read the content of the emails. Many scam emails will have funky wording, some phrases won’t make sense or words will be misspelled.
Other scam emails can contain content about you needing to make a payment for a medical account or they want you to review your recent payment. If you haven’t made any payments recently or the email address isn’t the same as your health account portal, delete it and don’t click on any prompted links. Lastly, never download any file from an unknown address.
How to Protect Yourself Against Them
What to Do If You Suspect Something