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The Friday Five for March 30th

THAT was a crazy week. All I can say is TGIF. Hopefully many of you will enjoy the fruits of your labour this weekend. I have assembled another awesome collection of web finds that will make you say “hmmm”. As always, my goal is to keep an eye out for articles, stories, videos and ideas that will help you grow and promote your real estate business. So without further adieu, I bring you this week’s fabulous finds.

Recently we sent out a message to the whole company asking them to send us links to any video they may have so that we could add it to our Youtube channel. Video is such a big part of SEO. Recently I did a search of downtown Toronto Homes and on the first page in Google search were videos by our own Clive McLean. That’s got to say something. So check out these fun facts from  @JeffBullas about the creation of Youtube and imagine how it will change your business.

This is crazy. If you post something on Facebook, 50% of its views (known as half-life) will happen in the first 3.2 hours. On Twitter its less, 2.8 hours. It seems that social media is happening so fast that it is hard to create an impact and stay in the conversation. While this is a lengthy article from @hubspot there some great take away points when it comes to measuring your impact and determining what tactics you need to stay front and centre.

Check out this video from the founder of @smedio on Branding. It is a bit on the long side but what I liked about it is his clear definition of what “Brand” is. Once you know what your brand is you can run your business better.

This one, from @forbes,  is short and to the point. We are all in sales, so if you want to excel at your career here are five quick tips. Think about them on your way to your next listing appointment and see if the outcome of that appointment changes.

At yesterday’s Bosley Social Media and Technology Connect meeting we talked about Blogging for beginners and in particular the notion of Hyper Local Marketing or Niche Marketing. Here is a great video from @inmannext  featuring Chris Leader that spells it out perfectly. If you are thinking about farming a particular area, this video will get you started. At the end of the day, Niche Marketing is about spending less and getting more. I like the sounds of that.


Mastermind for March 28th Check The Facts on Those Listings and Bad Luck Closings

Happy Wednesday. Kind of a quiet Mastermind this morning. That’s ok. You can’t hit everyone out of the park. Thanks to Tom Bosley for coming by. It is always great to get his advise and listen to his years of experience on any topic. If you missed today’s Mastermind, you missed a great discussion on checking your listing and things breaking days before closing.

This week one of our agents told a story of how, with two days before closing, his client called to tell him that there was a leak in one of the bedrooms. They quickly sprung into action, called the roofer who arrived right away only to discover the leak was from a pipe and not the roof. Relief. After accessing the damage our agent called the Buyer Agent, explained the situation and agreed on a plan to get it fixed. A minor inconvenience at most but what was funny was that almost everyone had a story of things going wrong with houses within days of closing. We started to wonder if it was possible the house was somehow voicing its’ displeasure with the seller leaving. One agent told the story of a seller packing up the last box in his condo and deciding to do one last load of laundry. That, it turned out, was a costly mistake. unbeknownst to the seller, the washing machine would not stop filling. The water ended up flooding three floors down and he, having cancelled his insurance, was stuck with a $30,000 bill. Ouch. We also hears stories of broken pipes, leaky basements, sewer backups and broken appliances. It is kind of amazing just how often it happens. It seems clear that it is important to have full home and content insurance on a property right up to the moment of closing.

Next we talked about a recent case where the Selling Agent and the Buying Agent didn’t verify facts about a listing. It ended up costing them both $10,000. Double ouch! Here is the story. Agent Jones listed a home for $559,000 and stated on the listing that the house had a private driveway and a single parking spot. Agent Jones did not notice that NO curb cut existed, and in fact it was Agent Jones who had sold the property to the sellers just over a year ago. At that time, the MLS information sheet made no mention of a private driveway or parking. Along comes Agent Smith and his clients who end up buying the house. Agent Smith took the listing at Agent Jones’ word and did not inquire as to the legality of the parking. Shortly after the property closed, the Buyer got a parking ticket on his car. The Buyer contacted the area Councillor’s Office who verified that the parking spot was illegal and that there was a moratorium on granting future parking spaces. With little recourse, the Buyer complained to RECO. The outcome of the case placed the blame equally on both agents because both Jones and Smith didn’t ensure the accuracy of the representations made on the listing. There were a host of other charges under The Real Estate and Business Broker’s Act and The Code of Ethics and they were both fined substantially.

It  seems clear that there is a substantial duty to verify all the facts on a listing and nothing should be left to chance. Our duty to our clients, particularly our buyer clients, is to verify the information on a listing.  If you are listing a condo, even if the same unit has been sold five times, you have a responsibility to  measure it yourself. Do not rely on the measurements of the previous agents. What seems open for great debate is how a discount company, that simply exists for mere postings purposes, is able to verify information provided by a seller. Our rules are pretty specific about a brokerage’s duty to provide accurate details on their listings. Food for thought.


The Friday Five for March 23

Happy Friday everyone. For those that don’t already know, the Friday Five is a collection of neat finds that I have personally curated. They are meant to help and enhance the Social Media experience for Realtors everywhere. Enjoy!

So you want to be a leader in Real Estate right? Ok then, check out the  12 Most essential leadership traits. There is a great bit of info in this article; According to a recent survey conducted by Manpower, 80% of employees would leave their jobs if they could. Why? Because they hate their jobs and their bosses. Now do you get an idea of how important these traits are?  Thanks to….you guessed it @12most

The Friday Five wouldn’t be complete without something from @JeffBullas. I’m a huge Twitter fan so I am always on the lookout for anything that proves that I’m not just wasting time. Bingo. Found one of the best.  I think this post clearly demonstrates that Twitter can be both a distraction and an interruption but is also an important tool for planning, marketing and networking for business.

Do you hate to read the Friday Five? Then Here’s a video to watch. It’s an interview with Marni Smith author of the new book New Relationship Marketing and Facebook Marketing, An Hour A Day. thanks to @smexaminer

Talk about the world moving at the speed of light. This has nothing to do with Real estate but when I heard about it I thought, Dam, why didn’t I think of that? An app that turns your phone into a remote for your TV. Duh? Thanks to @mashable

Is traditional advertising dead? Dropping flyers, newspapers too costly for the amount of return? Check out this great article from @fastcompany on “The Golden Age of Advertising”. As the blogger wrote, ” As an agency it is our goal to make 2012 the year of great content. Content that breaks through the clutter, has context, provides information, entertainment, or utility. Content that is authentic and real and will help our clients change the conversation, because brands that get talked about are brands that get bought”. I thought this was an excellent and relevent snippet to our business.

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