Category Archives: Real Estate

Specialization Smechilzation

As I am progressing in my Real Estate Practice, I keep loving and reveling in the new challenges that my clients bring to me.  I get to LEARN and change direction and think outside the box.  

This constant flux brings me back to advice I was given early in my career.  "Katie, you must find a specialization in Real Estate."  Who says?  Why has this piece of wisdom been passed down?  Why must I throw myself into a box and nail it shut?  I miss out on potential new explorations and understandings of Real Estate.  

I'm a Real Estate geek.  There is nothing I find more exciting than learning about Real Estate – well, besides technology.  I mean there are so many avenues and roads to see and explore.  Each just begging me to learn the intricacies and nuances.  So why should I specialize?  Why should I form a box around myself?  

Some of it I think is safety.  You know the ins and outs of everything there is to know on a specific subject or area.  But, are not new ideas from those people who think outside the box?  Who are exposed to different ways of doing things?  

Let's look at the situation right now in Real Estate.  We have a potential section of buyers who are scared stiff to buy because of various reasons:

  1. Been burned before by the market and are afraid to buy or
  2. Know the market is a sticky situation and don't want to try their luck or
  3. Serious lock down on getting a mortgage due to credit.

What are we doing about this?  Seriously, what are we doing?  

Let's change the thought process.  Let's work with the people.  Encourage them in their endeavors.  Give them options.  Let them know that we support them and their decisions.  Let them know that we are experts in Real Estate.  Period.  

Experts in Real Estate do not shy away from a challenge.  They take care of their clients and their needs.

To Lease/Option or Lease/Purchase or Not

With the state of the economy and how the housing market has been, some of my sellers have approached me with this question concerning Lease/Options or Lease/Purchases.

3 Things to Consider on a Lease/Option or Lease/Purchase:
1.  "There are many complex issues to be addressed" and there are no standard contracts for these issues; therefore, a Real Estate lawyer needs to be involved.  
2.  Thorough background and credit checks must be done on the potential tenant so you know that their money woes won't bite you.
3.  Being locked in on a purchase price when you do not know the future of the real estate market.  You have a 50/50 chance of loosing or winning out on the deal.  Not only that; on the Lease/Option you have a 50/50 chance of them accepting the contract.
What is the difference between a Lease/Option and a Lease/Purchase?
Lease/Option is when the tenant leases the property for a certain period of time and then has an option to buy the property or move out.  A Lease/Purchase is when the tenant leases the property for a certain period (similar to the option but here is where it differs) and then has to purchase the property by a certain time period.  There is NO out for the tenant/buyer at that point.  They have to buy or be in breach of contract.  Yikes.
What does a Real Estate Lawyer say about Lease/Options or Lease/Purchases?
Joseph J. Barone, President of Talon Title Agency of Central Ohio, Inc. sent me this document for my clients to consider when approachng this subject.
I'll quote from the attached document and leave you with this last thought… "These transactions are not for the faint of heart."

3 Applications that the Realtor/Solo Entrepreneur Needs

Here are some core applications that a Realtor or a Solo Entrepreneur needs in their arsenal to look professional:

1. Customer/Client Relationship Management System (CRMs)
I find it mandatory that an entrepreneur has a CRM.  Batchbook has fit my bill since my first CRM system as an Access database.  What I like about this Batchbook is that you don't need to have an IT background to make changes to the system.  It can connect to Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to anyone entered into the system.  Also, there is a true relationship managment behind this system.  You can connect important relationships with your contacts and even your deals!  There are  many advantages to this "unknown" system.

2.  eMail Newslettter 
Batchbook and MailChimp really go hand in hand.  They sync very well so I have one centralized database with Batchbook; but, can do my newsletters through MailChimp using my centralized CRM system.  I like MailChimp because of one simple word :  FREE.  Yes, I said free for 12,000 emails a month.  Now if I ever get over 12,000 emails a month, I will happily pay the fees that MailChimp details on their site.  Also, this eMail system allows for integration of YouTube videos.  I find this invaluable.

3.  Mileage Tracking
I primarily use Expensify for tracking my mileage; but, you can also track all of your expenses for your business through this application.  I use my business credit card to track the rest of my expenses.  I like Expensify to track mileage because it has a map integration to the system that calculates the mileage for you.  All you need to know is where you started, where you went, and where you ended up.

These are the tools I use to simplify my life.   I am not endorsing any particular one; but, I am saying these are the best that I have found for my entrepreneur kingdom.