Over the weekend our household spent some time cleaning out the hall closet. I ended up sorting through some old photo boxes and found an interesting item; a vintage Celebrity Drinking Cup and Pillbox. The tag on the back had been worn off but the name of the maker and that it was a cup and pillbox was displayed prominently on the top of the item. I thought to myself, "Gee, this could be worth some money!". Well, I Googled, Celebrity Drinking Cup and Pillbox and poof, (photo can be viewed in my Photo Gallery) just like that I had several websites to investigate my vintage find. Although it was only worth $2.99 on eBay, I learned a valuable lesson. Branding yourself and/or product is very important in business. Customers can find out about you and your company for many years to come. We may not all be "vintage" but we all want to be found when someone wants real estate services. Not only is it good for business, it is also a requirement of ADRE to prominently display your brokerage name on most advertising. So, if you have been in business for years or are just starting out, branding is everything!
2014 has been a great year for Winn School of Real Estate! We saw a 30% increase in student enrollment over 2013. The interest in the real estate industry continues to increase as the housing values in the quad-city area continue to rise. Although the number of units sold was down from last year by almost 10%, the sold prices are up. Prescott Valley saw the greatest increase in value at 13%. Chino Valley saw a 9% increase in value, Prescott 8% and Dewey/Humboldt 7%.
As of today, there are 856 Realtors (Agents, Brokers & Managing Brokers) in our association (PAAR). Some estimate that only 20% produce 80% of the sales. My advice to the new licensee; hang your license with a company that will provide the training you need to become one of the 20%.
This industry is constantly changing. Stay informed and engaged in the industry you have selected as your career. Being successful starts in your own mind then manifests itself as outlets make themselves evident. Tell everyone you know that you are a Realtor. And remember... you are new to this industry, not to life. Use your life experiences to connect with your customers and clients and excel in this profession like I know you can!
Happy New Year!
I have noticed some disturbing advertising practices popping up in the classified section in our local newspaper, The Daily Courier.
Real estate salespeople are running ads using abbreviated real estate company names or just leaving off their company's name all together (Called "Blind Ads"). Both of these types of ads are clear violations of the Commissioner's Rules. (Rules are reprinted at the end of this posting.)
All advertising by real estate licensees are under the supervision of the Broker. It seems to me that the real estate salespeople involved in the activity of running "Blind Ads" and/or not including the full name of the companies in the ad, are skipping the crucial step of having their ads reviewed and approved by their Broker prior to publication.
Many brokers assign a licensee under the brokerage to review the classified ads on a regular basis to help educate their salespeople about proper advertising. This is a wonderfully effective practice.
You may be asking yourselves "Why does the Arizona Department of Real Estate care about this practice?". Simply put, it is deceptive advertising. The consumer has the right to know if they are contacting a licensed real estate salesperson or Joe public. They also should know the exact name of the company that the salesperson works for in case they need to contact the Broker. And, since it is the job of the Department to protect the public the advertising rules are in place to do just that.
Of course, most salespeople are following the rules. But there were enough advertising violations in the classifieds over the past few weeks to prompt this posting as a gentle reminder. Make sure that you are having your ads reviewed and approved by your broker.
Commissioner's Rules R4-28-502. Advertising by a Licensee A. A salesperson or broker acting as an agent shall not advertise property in a manner that implies that no salesperson or broker is taking part in the offer for sale, lease, or exchange.
Commissioner's Rules R4-28-502. Advertising by a Licensee A.- C. A salesperson or broker shall ensure that all advertising contains accurate claims and representations, and fully states factual material relating to the information advertised. A salesperson or broker shall not misrepresent the facts or create misleading impressions.
Commissioner's Rules R4-28-502. Advertising by a Licensee- E. A salesperson or broker shall ensure that all advertising identifies in a clear and prominent manner the employing broker’s legal name or the dba name contained on the employing broker’s license certificate.
It has been a while since I posted anything to my blog... my apologies. The market is definitely getting stronger. It has been reported that values are up but sales are down over last years stats. This may be true, but remember Multiple Listing Service (MLS) stats typically do not include new construction. When factoring in all the new building sales throughout the quad-city area, I would think the sales numbers would be the same or probably better than same time last year. That reminds me... make sure you are registering your buyers in the new home models. Builders pay great referrals!
I used to have to call several brokerages to get just a few to come into class to address my students about their operations. Now, the brokerages are calling me for appointments to visit my class and tell my students all about their companies.
It is always a concern of the students, if they will have a place to hang their license once they are done with class and testing. I always assure them that there will be and now we can all rest assured because the demand has increased greatly.
Even if a brokerage is not interested in the brand new agent, affectionately called "Newbie", they should come in and tell the students how their companies work. Newbie's are not new forever and they certainly aren't new to life. Some of my students have extensive backgrounds in sales and management. After a few months of training they will be premiere REALTORs and leaders in the industry.
So, don't sell your brokerages short or under estimate the new students coming out of my school. They are the future of the business!
I was speaking with a potential student yesterday. She was sharing that she knew several brokers in town and had already interviewed with some. During one interview she reported that the broker told her that the 90 hour course was strictly to get them through the testing and they would not really need any information provided in class for their careers in real estate. So, he indicated that taking the nine-day fast tract class in the Phoenix Valley would be sufficient. I suggest all real estate brokers encourage potential real estate licensees to seek out the best education available. Most often your local school is the best choice. Yes, we do prepare the licensee candidate for passing their exams. We also teach them real estate terms and concepts they will need in this business. The Arizona Department of Real Estate requires us to teach a very robust curriculum in preparing the student not only for their exam but for their new careers. This education is the basis for everything that comes in the future. Brokers should be encouraging potential licensees to take the best, not the fastest education.
We are coming to the end of the largest class in the history of Winn School of Real Estate! Twenty-seven students. Most will take their finals on Thursday and will move on the the State exam then to their new careers.