Maintaining Work-Life Balance in a 24/7 Job

WorkLife_748165192.jpgReal 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.

Virtual reality keeps making an impression

vr pic

Emerging technology is always going to be attractive to younger buyers. And given the power millennials now wield in the housing market, it should come as no surprise that real estate professionals are investing in the latest high-tech tools. With this in mind, it’s time for agents to start thinking about whether using advanced video options in their sales efforts will help them find a foothold with younger shoppers, especially with the new buying season now underway.

Recent data suggests that as many as 2 in 5 buyers today will use at least some kind of video tour to make a decision about a home purchase, and homes with video as part of their listings tend to be far more popular than those that leave video out, according to Real Estate Tech News. Consequently, it’s time for agents to decide whether their clientele would prefer this kind of technology be included, or whether they want to take an additional step to really stand out from the crowd.

Going with VR
While it’s unlikely that clients are going to want to skip real-world open houses altogether – at least not any time soon – using virtual reality video that guides would-be buyers through a property before they ever visit it in person can be a good way for agents to help people get a real feel for a property. And surprisingly, the equipment and software needed to properly engineer those virtual tours isn’t that expensive, especially when considering the potential return on investment.

Here, too, recent polls suggest that virtual tours tend to be a little more popular with would-be buyers than standard video, at least when it’s presented as an option. Moreover, there’s an added benefit in that agents can record multiple homes they’ve listed and potential buyers can take multiple virtual tours in just one office visit. That, in turn, helps them get a feel for which listed properties they might like to visit for a real-world tour, saving time for all involved.

What’s needed?
To the earlier point about equipment investments, all agents will likely have to do is buy a camera capable of recording in 360 degrees, which typically cost a few hundred dollars, and have a smartphone and headset handy, according to The Los Angeles Times. And despite that small investment, this kind of capability can really stand out for buyers who may be wowed by an option relatively few agents make available at this time.

“It is so helpful to buyers,” San Diego-based real estate agent Jason Cassity told the newspaper. “You could have someone sitting in Boise walk through your house, and it just does so much more than the photos can. It gives them a sense of how the layout feels.”

In general, using the latest technology can be a definitive way to stand out from crowd during the busy buying season. Embracing the latest technology as it emerges is often a good way to meet that goal.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click www.hmsnational.com.

The World of Social Business

socialbusinessBy now you have probably heard how important social media can be to your business’ success. And hopefully you have even set up accounts and profiles on some of these sites. But even with that done you still may be asking yourself; where is all this new business? Why haven’t I seen big results? Social Media sites are great marketing tools, but it is easy to get drawn into the non-productive activities on them.

So what type of content does attract new business? It is more than just boasting about your skills and bragging about how great you are at selling homes. You need to attract clients with a compelling message. This will motivate them to take further action into working with you. It is the long-term value you can provide that will build the relationship and show you as a great person to do business with! You need to find that spot between your expertise and your potential client’s needs and wants.

People will watch you and interact with you for a while before they commit to a relationship with you. They will see right through you if you try to be something you are not. You are more likely to attract customers if you are being yourself and let your true personality come through. Be authentic and real.

As a real estate professional, what subjects can you provide credible information about that will keep them interested? The local community is a great place to start! The community can provide an endless supply of topics for your content. There will be interesting facts about the area’s history, great restaurants, unique local events to promote, and endless other details that will differentiate your market from surrounding areas.

What other topics should you consider including? Keep your ideal clients in mind. This is about them, not about you. What do they want to know and how can you differentiate yourself from the others? Provide them with helpful information and content that is valuable to them…..with no catch and no expectations. If you have mastered home staging, share your tips and tricks to making a home more charming. If you are an amazing investor, then tell folks what they should look for in a property to get the best return! This will show them that you are an expert without “pushing” your business onto them. They will feel more comfortable with you and will see you as an ideal fit for doing business together. Establishing credibility with individuals will make them your clients before you even talk in person!

Once you have decided on material to include, start off strong. Place the most important information first, to draw people in and keep them interested. Visuals are another great way to spice up your postings and entertain readers. Most people like to visualize concepts rather than read about them. A simple representation of any relevant facts or statistics will greatly improve the visual appeal of your content.

A common mistake made with social media is the belief that you are only interacting with people who are buying or selling their home right now. The reality is that you are trying to start two-way conversations with people, build their trust and belief in you, so that when they are ready, you will be there for them! They will reach out to you and they will remember you when someone else they know needs your assistance too!

When you make the effort to engage potential clients and offer valuable advice via social media, they are more likely to turn into your clients.

What’s the Happiest (and Unhappiest) Job in America?

happiestjob

Close your eyes and imagine your ideal job. What do you want to be: an astronaut? A travel writer? A rock star? How about a real estate agent?

If the thought of buying and selling properties doesn’t sound quite as appealing, consider this: Real estate agents actually have the happiest job in America, according to a CareerBliss.com survey reported by Forbes.

The survey collected reviews from 65,000 employees in 2012, and asked each participant to rate their job based on ten workplace happiness factors. Workers’ satisfaction with their relationship with their boss and co-workers, work environment, job resources, compensation, growth opportunities, company culture, company reputation, daily tasks, and control over their day-to-day duties were all measured.

High scores on these factors, plus a housing market that’s getting back on its feet, put real estate agents (who Forbes says make an average of $51,170 per year) on top of the list. The happiest jobs also included senior sales representative and construction superintendent.

Here are the top five happiest jobs
 (for the full list, head over to Forbes):

1. Real estate agent
2. Senior quality assurance engineer
3. Seniors sales representative
4. Construction superintendant
5. Senior application developer

Don’t Forget to WOW Them

The average consumer does not buy a house on a weekly, monthly, or even annual basis so creating a memorable experience is a MUST!!

Not all transactions are created equal, but there are specific needs that most homebuyers share. As a real estate professional it is more important than ever for you to impart your wisdom, expertise, and compassion while you guide clients through the process. Buying a home can be stressful, make a lasting impression that your clients will always remember!

  • Your unique qualities not only define who you are, but they encompass all that your business represents. Make a list of your top personality traits then choose the best three and incorporate them into your various marketing channels. Clients and prospects will get to know you better and what sets you apart from others.
  • Under promise and over deliver – EVERY TIME. The best way to WOW is to exceed your clients’ expectations all the time. Be realistic with everything you deliver and when they can expect it. Then go the extra mile to make your “delivery” impressive and on time, or better yet….early! This is the simplest way to secure your reputation and leaves very little room for any misunderstandings.
  • Keep them in the loop. Stay ahead of their questions, learn to anticipate what your clients will want to know and fire out an email or phone call before they reach out to you for answers. If they do beat you to the punch, be sure you are accessible. Make your responses in a timely manner and if you find you don’t have a quick response, at least acknowledge that you will get one to them as soon as possible! Make your clients feel valuable. See our blog on keeping your sellers updated.
  • Do you love what you do? Clients can sense whether you are enthusiastic about the business or simply putting in time. If you exude excitement, clients will be eager to make a connection and embrace your energy.
  • Remember the “other holidays”, anyone can send a Thanksgiving or Christmas card. Making the effort to remember your client’s own special “holidays” will impress. Imagine the feeling they will get upon receiving a personalized birthday card or anniversary card from you.
  • Ask for feedback; a simple phone call or follow-up email to gauge their satisfaction, will let them know you are 100% committed to making memorable client experiences. They will feel respected and will know you are not going to settle for less than the very best for them.
  • Reward their loyalty. You may choose to give gift cards to clients who send you referrals, or throw in a free product or service here and there; unsolicited gifts will make it hard for clients to go anywhere else.

Impressions of excellence, commitment, and quality will create life-long clients. You’ve got what it takes to “WOW” your clients every day; it’s time to get to it!

Are you ready to buy? | Tips to help you save money

Prudential Homesale Commercial

Looking for heartwarming content to share?

Here is a new Prudential commercial that you can share on Facebook, Blog, Twitter and more.

It’s a 30 second commercial all about “Home Movies”

 

Click on your DBA below, under the video player click “SHARE”, and then select the appropriate social media icon

Bob Yost

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Homesale Services Group

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