Today's Headlines - Realty Times
Posted On Thursday, 25 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Do you believe that in romance there is a “happily ever after?” Meet Jennifer Youngblood, a highly successful “clean romance” author of over 60 books who has enjoyed outstanding success while raising 2 boys and enjoying an active life!  Hear her now and get a FREE eBook as her gift to WWN! 
Posted On Wednesday, 24 March 2021 21:18 Written by
Posted On Wednesday, 24 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 23 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 23 March 2021 00:00 Written by

Undoubtedly, you have heard of smartphones. More likely than not, you have one in your pocket as you read this. Additionally, smart homes and smart home features are likely part of your vocabulary in today’s world, including the likes of Ring Doorbells, Nest to remotely handle things like your thermostat, or any number of artificial intelligence (A.I.)-based devices, such as Amazon’s Alexa. But have you yet heard of a “Smart City?”

Despite having the aforementioned technologies, does the concept of Smart City still sound like something out of a sci-fi movie or Netflix series? It shouldn’t, as the technology that encompasses a Smart City is fast becoming a reality, and it is already applied in many ways.

What Is A Smart City?

You may already have a rough understanding of what a Smart City may include, given the frequency of smart home applications and devices on the market today. Because we have fully embraced the concept of smart devices in our pockets, our cars and our homes, it’s only natural that we now look to make our cities much smarter as well.

However, a Smart City being a much larger scale application means larger solutions to much more widespread problems the residents and working professionals of a city face. In simpler terms, a Smart City technology can address issues with transportation, public safety, waste disposal and processing, urban planning, economic development, and more.

Those are the issues that need solving, and digital technology is what solves them, much like you having an App to change your home thermostat from a beach in Jamaica. So, what exactly are some of the prominent technologies at play in the development of a Smart City?

5G Connectivity and Transportation

Between Verizon, AT&T, and our own personal connectivity, 5G is applicable in far greater situations, integral especially in the functionality of a Smart City.

The traffic in every major city across the world is probably our biggest concern, both because of pollution and the inevitable gridlock many face in cities like Los Angeles and Chicago. Verizon Wireless is one of the biggest 5G traffic management system providers in the United States, boasting the ability to cut down vehicle idle time by nearly half of what it has been by way of implementing Internet of Things (IoT) devices in the pavement and streetlights to better alert local authorities of patterns in traffic.

In addition to driving, let’s also consider the issue of parking. If you did not grow up in a city, you know exactly how frustrating it is to do laps around a downtown area looking for an available spot. Smart parking systems coupled with low latency connectivity of 5G can likely provide an out-of-towner the ability to be alerted when a parking spot is upon them.

Safety And Security In The City

Small-town individuals who travel to a bigger city for work or, as work becomes more remote, entertainment and enrichment are the prime target for muggers and physical crimes. Is this something that the more advanced technology of a Smart City can remedy?

Yes, it can and absolutely will! 5G connectivity facilitates what is called Edge Computing: a lightning-fast capturing and processing of data unlike ever before, updating over-the-air and data management platforms quickly. This level of video surveillance facilitates real-time analysis of video recordings of high-crime areas in the city to quickly identify and thwart something as small as a mugging or as large as a citywide terror threat.

Because our smart devices give us the ability to be so connected, greatly increasing the volume of data that is generated every second of every day, 5G connectivity can and will be put to great use in the way of safety and security. However, there is also the double-edged sword many authority figures and politicians must deal with. Will the public be okay being on camera every step of the way for their safety?

All This Technology, What About Hacking?

While on the subject of safety, when it comes to connectivity, the fear of hacking or destructive cybercrime is always prevalent. How do you have such a digital city, with so many critically used technologies, and keep it digitally safe for everyone?

In this case, blockchain technology is the answer.

Blockchain is a decentralized ledger system that cryptocurrencies are built on, storing data across a series of computers rather than one solid hub. This, coupled with its level of encryption, makes hacking nearly impossible, as the second a breach occurs, it would take the hacker an absurd amount of time to reconstruct the data, giving cybersecurity professionals and software the ability to respond long before the damage is done.

Smart Cities Are A Hard Trend

In many cases, Smart Cities are already under way, as is 5G connectivity for our personal devices and smart homes.

According to my Anticipatory Organization Model, in order to stay ahead of digital disruptions in your industry, you must pay attention to the Hard Trends, or future certainties that we cannot change, shaping the world.

I already identified 5G connectivity as a Hard Trend many years ago, and, likewise, 6G and beyond will materialize as well. And because of that, the applications of Smart City technology are truly limitless; a Soft Trend that is open to influence, which you can then leverage to your advantage.

Smart Cities are digital, but human beings are the ones that give them a reason to exist at all. Therefore, it is important to become an Anticipatory Leader today, so can you use my Hard Trend Methodology to pre-solve problems that we as humankind will face as cities become more digitally connected?

 

Source: Burrus.com

Posted On Tuesday, 23 March 2021 00:00 Written by

Strong buyer activity and the rate at which listed properties are flying off the market make it important to recognize opportunities when others miss them. Right now a real untapped market for opportunities is investors! Let’s take a look at a few reasons investors are now great targets:

• COVID 19 has allowed people not to be evicted for non-payment of rent. No rent, no cash flow!
• Colleges and Universities are limited or empty, leaving student housing units to remain vacant. No rent, no cash flow!
• Property values in many areas have risen significantly in the past few years, making properties far more valuable than thought.
• Potential changes in investment property financing may make it less attractive to continue purchasing investment properties and creating the possibility for the search for other investments.
• Potential changes to the tax code may also make it less attractive to hold investment property long term and open the door to other potential investments or allocation of assets.

So why not have the conversation with our investors about selling now?

Why not have conversations with our real estate partners to discuss the situation with their investors?

 Isn’t this a good time to speak with our accountants and financial planners about this subject?

Wouldn’t this be a great time for a video or videos with your other professionals about this topic to share with your people, their people, and social media?

It’s easy for people to complain about the market; why not create useful strategies for your clients and referral partners on how there are opportunities to be had if you only look for them! 

Questions or comments: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Posted On Monday, 22 March 2021 00:00 Written by

John Capozzi- “Dig where the gold is unless you just want some exercise.”

“Location, location, location,” experts say is the most important real estate facet.  If you are a homeowner, a home seller, or a homebuyer, the timing element determines the amount of gold you mine from your home or your financing. “Is there still gold in them there hills?”  Watch out for the effects of inflation.  

Inflation is pushing onto the scene, and inflation is the archenemy of low interest rates.  This week the Federal Reserve chairman, Jerome Powell, announced that the Fed would continue keeping their rate low, even in the face of rising inflation. The Fed vowed they would continue to buy mortgage-backed securities to keep mortgage rates affordable.  However, the bond markets have been running against the Fed's efforts like a game of chicken.  “Is there gold in them there hills?”  When it comes to your real estate and your mortgage financing terms, better look at laying claim to it now, before the economic landscape changes. 

We still see a hot real estate market for both buyers and sellers from the mortgage office.  High demand and the short supply of homes for sale are bolstering home values on the high side.  High home values are golden for home sellers.  Buyers see the still low fixed mortgage rates as a goldmine for them also.  Buyers can lock in fixed rates that are still giving them a house payment much less than what they would be paying to a landlord for rent on a similar home.   

Ways to mine gold from your home and mortgage

1. First-time homebuyers feel a lot more secure knowing the principal and interest payment on their new fixed-rate mortgage will not be increasing year after year, like when their landlord would knock on the door and raise the rent.  

Johnny and his family had been paying about $1,000/month in rent in a crime-ridden area. They wanted to move to a safer neighborhood with a larger house to accommodate their expanding family size.  Johnny was short on funds for a down payment, but he did have a lot of patience and persistence, and with a little bit of help with the down payment from a local agency, Johnny’s family bought the home they wanted with less than $1,000 down and a total payment under $800 per month. 

2. Home sellers are bragging about the profits they are pocketing selling their homes.   For example, for March 2021, Realtor.com shows the national median home price was $353,000, an increase of 13.7% from  $310,000 in February 2020.  

3. Refinancing and restructuring finances are still happening for homeowners.  Today the pace is more frantic since mortgage rates have been climbing steadily over the last month. It is hard to find mortgage rates in the twos with no extra costs, but there are still rates to enjoy in the threes for many borrowers.

A. Refinancing to lower your rate and lower your mortgage payment
B. Refinancing to lower your rate and shorten the term on your mortgage
C. Refinancing to lower your rate and combine other debt to improve your home or reduce overall payments per month. 

Posted On Monday, 22 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Monday, 22 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 21 March 2021 00:00 Written by
It’s March Madness time again and, indeed, the prominent word is “Madness!” With our country’s pandemic still in place as we try to safely open schools, indoor- dining, and with sports opportunities becoming more prevalent, will this year’s March Madness operate as it did in 2020? It probably won’t. Of course, there is a plan in place, but the real question is will they be able to make it happen? Stay tuned!
 
The present NCAA plan is to hold this tournament in Indianapolis, Indiana with all 64 schools in or about that location. The plan that has been in operation in “normal” times is that selected teams would play their first game in the higher-seeded T*E*A*M's home team arena. As the tournament progresses the winning teams would play in divisional tournaments with the winners moving on the next round and ultimately going on to the “Final Four” usually played on Saturday with the two winners playing for the NCAA Championship the following Monday night.
 
At this writing, all 64 teams will be in or about Indianapolis with Lucas Stadium (home of the NFL Colts) being the site of the final four. Those Saturday semi-final games would split Lucas in half. The question is what is the process of even getting to Lucas? Like the guy asking: “How do you get to Carnegie Hall (in NYC) ?” The answer is “Practice! Practice! Practice!” The question here is, ”How do you get to Lucas?” The answer is: “Win! Win! WIN! In past years it was easily determined with the higher seed being at their home arena. But for 2021, various arenas in and around the Indianapolis complex had to be secured. Incidentally, ALL players, coaches, 96 officials, and media will be housed in and about the city of Indianapolis.
 
Let’s look at those playing locations.

1. Indiana University in Bloomington is some 54 miles (1 hour + driving).
2. Purdue University is 65 miles (1 hour+ driving).
3. Butler University near downtown Indy.
4. Bankers Life Fieldhouse is just minutes away from Central Indianapolis.
5. Indianapolis State Fairgrounds is near the city.
6. And Lucas Stadium will have 2 courts available, but will only use one at a time.

These six courts will be available throughout the tournament with play scheduled morning, afternoon, and evening. All of the above is tentative at this writing. It will be an interesting tournament.
 
Will you be watching CBS, TBS, TNT, truTV throughout the tournament from March 22nd – April 4th?
Posted On Friday, 19 March 2021 00:00 Written by
We have all heard that world does not stand still! Neither do our industry or our individual endeavors. Experts say the “Knowledge Mass” is now doubling approximately every 3 years. In the past year our world has changed dramatically. Have you and your company changed with it? Your BRAND is your identity which is created through your name, symbol, design and reputation. A known brand is customarily a symbol of trust; an unknown brand is no brand at all.
And we must all realize that the world and, more specifically, your market, have no need for another “Me too” brand. The degree to which your brand tells a differentiated story, will often be the degree which enables your success to come about.
 
Let’s talk about how you might re-energize your brand and image. I suggest you get 6-8 of your best and brightest team members together for a “Brand Brainstorm Session”. This is a platform where you can take advantage of the collective intellect of this group by seeking the input of each of them on multiple brand-related topics. Remember, all of us is smarter than one of us!
Start with an in-depth discussion of what your brand has stood for over the past ten years. What’s good about it? What’s outdated about it? What needs to be updated in the message you want to send to your marketplace?
 
Next create a mechanism for surveying your current client base to find out what they want and need in your space at this time. Perhaps it is done with your key people making phone calls or personal visits. Perhaps an e-survey would work for you. Endeavor in your meeting to define your current target market. How has it changed in recent years? What identifiable trends have you discovered? Is it advisable to expand your target market at this time? Careful - Don’t try to be all things to all people. If you do you may well end up being nothing to anybody! It’s normally best to make changes in your target market reservedly with well-thought-out reasons and precision strategies.
 
One way to advance your brand and reputation is to become known for the problems you solve. Now that we have identified what our target market wants and needs, we can fine-tune our solutions to create more value. Then we are tasked with selling our brand value to our target market.
 
Advertising guru, David Ogilvie once defined brand identity as The intangible sum of an organization’s known attributes. As you increase your capabilities and deliverables, the word will spread and your brand and image in the eyes of your customer will be enhanced.
 
Also, what do people think when they see your logo?  Does it stand for excellence? Is it tired and in need of rejuvenation? The GM logo has been consistent for almost a century – they simply have no resounding reason to change it! And I’ll bet you can picture it right now. Instagram recently created a new and improved logo to rave reviews. BB & T Bank and SunTrust recently merged and are now Truist Bank with a new logo. With good reason, it is sometimes time to step out and update your brand.
 
This writer believes that your goal should be to gain brand loyalty from those in your target market. If there are some who really don’t know about you and your brand, they are indifferent; from there we need to create awareness; then we want to earn preference status; then we go for brand insistence, and, ultimately, they become advocates of our brand.
 
The image of a company, product, or employee is never a constant, it’s an ever-changing variable. We are only as good as the last transaction we had with a given customer. Brand insistence is achieved by performing knock-your-socks-off service and a reputation for customer centric behavior! (Which is a discussion for another day)

We are in extraordinary times that call for extraordinary performance! Think hard about your brand, logo and market presence. Reinforce it as is, or tweak it, or change it altogether if need be, but carefully work through what you are saying to your marketplace and the way it will be received.

Posted On Friday, 19 March 2021 00:00 Written by


Rick DeLucaRick began his career as a part-time agent in 1976, quickly becoming full-time and eventually buying the company in his fifth year.  He grew it from 34 to 193 agents and lead the U.S. in agent productivity.  His personal sales production saw him sell 200+ homes per year during his sales career.  He was honored to be both Renos Salesperson of the Year, as well as the Nevadas Realtor of the Year.  Upon selling his company, Rick has shared his successful strategies worldwide ever since.  He has spoken in all 50 states, for every real estate franchise and has been recognized as one of the most popular trainers within the real estate industry. In 2014 Rick became the Regional Director for an Australian based franchise and grew it to 7 offices with 125 agents in Oregon and Washington.

With over 40 years of experience Ive seen every real estate model offered to this industry.  When I was first introduced to Exit Realty, I was intrigued with a business model I had never seen.  The culture of we help our people grow immediately impressed me. While providing state of the art technology, Exit Realty continues to emphasize the importance of relationships.  The combination of providing incredible tools, exceptional service to owners, agents and staff, a strong emphasis on strengthening relationships and a compensation plan that rewards growth has created a culture that is truly unique in this industry.  I believe my 40+ years in this business has prepared me for this journey and by joining the Exit Realty family I will create a legacy I will be proud to claim.

Posted On Friday, 19 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Thursday, 18 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Thursday, 18 March 2021 00:00 Written by


 Kathy_Schmalen.jpgKathy Schmalen is the owner of Che Sguardo in Chicago, IL and has extensive experience as an expert in both the professional image and beauty industries.  A Miss Illinois winner and Miss USA semi-finalist, her career accomplishments include international modeling for top fashion and beauty industry icons such as Vogue and Harper's Bazaar, commercial styling/beauty consultations, national esthetic trainer for many international companies, and prominent activism in the Chicago area non-profit and philanthropic communities.  Kathy established Che Sguardo/makeupstudio in 1984 with a focus on serving the commercial beauty industry, but also anyone who is passionate about healthy and vibrant living. 

Posted On Thursday, 18 March 2021 00:00 Written by

How do you work at home when your 2 young daughters have hijacked the Lucky Charms cereal to make a swimming pool for their Barbie Dolls all over your kitchen and still get work done? Super Mom and Co-Founder of Workman Success Systems, Brianne Workman Ika, shares how she really does get it done, carve out a little quiet time and still have some balance while smiling through it all.


 A bit about Brianne:

ValerieMorrisBrianne is committed to the success of WSS coaches, clients, and an amazing team. She has spent the last 8 years working as Verl's right hand, and the last 5 years as the Co-Founder and VP of Strategy and Growth helping to build Workman Success Systems. She loves working alongside her brothers, and dad, every day and excited about the future of WSS.

Posted On Wednesday, 17 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Wednesday, 17 March 2021 00:00 Written by

California doctor has court hearing for traffic violation;

Logs into Zoom to appear for meeting with Judge;

Appears to be wearing operating room gear;

Appears to be in operating room;

Appears to be operating and performing surgery!

The court clerk asks, “Are you available for trial?  It kind of looks like you’re in an operating room right now?”

Doctor: “I’m in an operating room.  Yes, I’m available for trial.  Go right ahead!”

Medical equipment, beeping in background, doc handling surgical tools…

On a court appearance Zoom call!!!

Response from the wise Judge:

“So unless I’m mistaken, I’m seeing a defendant that’s in the middle of an operating room appearing to be actively engaged in providing services to a patient,” Judge Gary Link said during the virtual hearing.

“I do not feel comfortable for the welfare of a patient if you’re in the process of operating that I would put on a trial.”

Ok, Time-Out.

Ladies & Gentlemen of the Jury, I would like to present my first case:

The Doctor in Surgery –

1. The Promise to show up for court is one level of keeping the promise.
2. The Promise to be fully present and focused only on the task at hand – meaning: your court appearance – is the next level.
3. The Promise to keep your client safe during surgery, and rescheduling your surgeries and court appearances, is another level entirely (that would seem obvious).

If I may, I’d like to present my second case:

The Judge –

1. The Promise to show up for court is one level of keeping the promise.
2. The Promise to be fully present and focused only on the task at hand – meaning: judging with all of your judging powers a doctor who has already missed a court appearance and is now on screen appearing distracted – is the next level.
3. The Promise to stop the trial mid-court time in order to ensure the safety of the patient, who is not your responsibility, while the surgeon acts recklessly, in defiance, to appear for court, is another level entirely. 

The Jury finds the defendant, Doctor Surgery While On Zoom Guy, GUILTY of every crime against Zoomanity and sentenced to having a quick, un-announced surgery to be performed on him by a blindfolded surgeon while filmed before a live studio audience.

The Jury also finds the Judge, The Honorable Gary Link, the highest level of Promise Culture Leaders in the Universe and thanks him on behalf of all Humanity, as well as on behalf of the patient, who was about to lose potentially more than was scheduled.

Ladies & Gentlemen of the Jury, and this Blog, are you the Doc or the Judge?

Keep The Promise.

(* Note: This is a REAL STORY, link HERE, as reported by CNN)

 

Source: JasonHewlett.com

Posted On Wednesday, 17 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 16 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 16 March 2021 00:00 Written by

Artificial intelligence (A.I.), one of the 20 core technologies I identified back in 1983 as the drivers of exponential economic value creation, has started out simple. From Amazon’s Alexa, Siri on your iPhone, or proclaiming “hey, Google…” in your home, there are several small but impactful applications of A.I. that have become fully integrated in our world today.

Now, following a historic moment in contemporary history dominated by a global pandemic, A.I. advancements have been turbocharged like never before.Consumer products that implement A.I. that have been in the spotlight for a handful of years are now having to share that fame with Information Technology (IT) solutions and its place in industry. If you haven’t already, from this point forward, it would be a good idea to keep a closer eye on A.I.’s rapid development and look for both predictable problems as well as amazing opportunities.

Disrupting IT Operations

Now that A.I. is starting to work its way into jobs and specific industries, many who turned a blind eye to its consumer and entertainment-based applications are now starting to get uneasy.

A job as an IT professional has been in increasing demand since the widespread growth of the Internet in the workplace, with the job market loaded with various opportunities. But as A.I. makes its way into the workplace, the tasks of an IT professional are rapidly transforming into something entirely different.

For example, A.I. and what’s called Machine Learning (M.L.) have the capacity to handle tasks that would require a large staff working around the clock, such as building a secure IT system. The fact of the matter is as the Internet and digital technologies evolve, so do cybercriminals. In order to prevent hacking and detrimental data breaches, an IT department at an organization must stay ahead of cybercrime.

What better way to do that than by implementing a system that can actually learn how to adapt to changing digital environments and know how to defend against them faster than a human cybercriminal can hack?

Artificial Intelligence In Manufacturing

A human’s physical ability to work in a manufacturing plant is not limitless in the traditional sense. We as people are sentient, emotional creatures; therefore, we require vacation time off, lunch breaks, and can at most work twelve-hour shifts before we start to clock out mentally, even if we are still physically on the job.

And consider how many individuals you need working on a line, each of their pay, and how many you need to switch in every shift change to keep up with the customer demands.

Working on an assembly line in a manufacturing plant is a prime example of what is referred to as Process Automation in the world of A.I. and M.L. What would ordinarily require a multitude of humans to perform physical, repetitive tasks can be accomplished by A.I. applications quicker and, much like the IT security system mentioned above, around the clock without needing to consider the labor rights of the machine.

Replacing Humans?

With advanced A.I. promising almost limitless possibilities that will enable businesses in every industry to make better decisions and complete tasks in far less time, what happens to humans in all of this?

Of course, entry-level workers all the way up to supervisors alike are worried about losing their jobs. We as humans like our comfort zones; however, there is no longevity in protecting and defending the status quo with rigorous fervor as the digital world around you speeds by like a bullet train.   

It is crucial to recognize how the technological landscape is evolving before our eyes during this digital transformation. Yes, it is true that hundreds of traditional jobs are disappearing, which may leave many out of work, but it is also important to realize how there are a wealth of new roles and employment opportunities arriving that are needed to help us progress further.

Learn To Anticipate The World Of A.I.

The key is to implement my Anticipatory Leader System, which is developed based on the identification of Hard Trends – future certainties that will happen – and Soft Trends – future maybes that are open to influence. In doing so, you will be able to pre-solve problems with newly emerging digital disruptions before they disrupt and leverage those disruptions for game-changing opportunities in your individual career or organization as a whole.

As an organization, it is important to identify the Hard Trend of A.I. and M.L. Those technologies have been at play in consumer markets, such as smartphones, for years. I always say, we aren’t going to suddenly stop using Alexa or Siri, so the technology of A.I. is certainly a Hard Trend.

But the Soft Trend is how A.I. will be implemented as it grows in the manufacturing industry, IT, and beyond. How will you implement A.I. at your organization, and more importantly, how will you reposition your workforce to keep their jobs and work with the technology?

For every new technology, there is a “human side” or “soft science” to it, which cannot be automated. Consider the historic Miracle on the Hudson, where Captain Sullenberger took over the machine to save lives, whereas in that case, the machine was designed to follow a set of predetermined instructions that would’ve ultimately led the plane to crash.

There is always a place for humans in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, and it is either up to you as a leader at your organization or an employee to become anticipatory in how you will work with it rather than fight against it.

 

Source: Burrus.com

Posted On Tuesday, 16 March 2021 00:00 Written by

Words from a basketball coach- “Shooting means every time you catch the ball, your eyes go to the rim. By looking at the rim from any position, allows you to see everything that happens on the floor.”

When you are positioning yourself to score on your real estate or mortgage deal, you need to have your eyes on what you want to accomplish.  It might be buying a home in a particular neighborhood.  You may want to reduce your overall monthly debt by refinancing a mortgage. Knowing your comfort level on move-in costs and monthly payments helps you keep your view of the playing field in perspective. 

We have experienced the lowest rates we have ever seen several weeks ago.  February 2021 saw the price on rates start an upward climb due to the fear of inflation, actions, and comments by the Federal Reserve. Even though mortgage rates are not tied to the Fed Rate, the Federal Reserve somewhat controls the price you pay for your mortgage rate by the amount of mortgage-backed securities they buy.

We are seeing the highest values on homes. Corelogic Equity reported fourth-quarter 2020 showed that homeowners with mortgages saw their equity increase by over 16% year over year. The increased equity build-up helps home sellers position themselves well for more net profit selling their homes. 

The week of March 8th, 2021, was kinder to rates, inching down slightly.  What does the playing field look like to you with your plans to buy a home or refinance the one you have?  Are you going to make your play and take your shot to score?  Some people say you miss every shot you don’t take. 

Renters want a piece of the profit from real estate values.  They are playing some smart strategies to buy a home.   It’s competitive, but if you know what you want, you are prepared and play a good strategy, you can score on purchasing the home you want. 

Bo Binkins felt cramped for space in the city apartment.  He wanted fresh air and the wide-open space outside the city.   With the help of a low-interest rate and low mortgage payment on the 100% USDA Rural Housing loan, he moved his family and his fishing gear to his new home on a country road closer to his favorite fishing spot. Bo can brag about his zero-down home purchase with his monthly payment much lower than the rent he was paying in town for a smaller space.  

Karen had worked hard throughout her career.  She had sacrificed to invest in her retirement funds and hoped to have her home paid off by the time she retired. Retirement loomed ahead, and she realized with a slight bit of panic that her income would decrease, but her bills would still be high.  

Karen told me, “It suddenly hit me that I do NOT have to pay off the house. If I can refinance my mortgage back to a 30-year term on a rate this far below what I am currently paying for the 15-year loan, I can do more and live better with the extra freed up cash flow each month.”   

Realtors and mortgage loan officers can see the real estate market from high up in the press box. What opportunities do you see for your homeowners, home buyers, and home sellers?

As a real estate professional, you are in the press box with a top-down view of the opportunities available to your clients.   What winning strategies do you see right now? 

Posted On Monday, 15 March 2021 00:00 Written by

The mortgage and real estate industries are bound by a series of rules, regulations, laws, and hopefully by ethics. While there has always been a few that have avoided or just plain disregarded the rules, most of those in the professions of mortgage and real estate have paid attention to the rules and were likely held to task when they didn’t.

The mortgage meltdown led to a huge collapse in the markets worldwide. Most responsible for the violation of trust placed with them have never been held accountable for their actions and some that were, didn’t suffer more than pennies on the dollar for their crimes, forget going to prison for a long time.

Today we are facing larger and more overt violations of rules and regulations than we saw prior to the mortgage meltdown and nobody seems to care! Major companies openly violate norms that have been well established and yet NOTHING happens.

How is it possible that these things happen in broad daylight and it goes almost accepted as part of the new world? How is it possible that companies can violate some of the most basic of all ethics in the real estate community, not communicating with or marketing to, a seller who is already listed their property with a licensed real estate agent and share with them specific strategies on how to terminate that agreement and the benefits of listing with a different agent, one that the company soliciting that seller will be happy to direct them to? You just have to go back last week to the National Real Estate Post and see their piece about the story of an agent in Washington State and wonder how this is possible, but nothing has even been done about it!

Is it possible that the National Association of Realtors® could have missed it? Is it possible that the local real estate board or the State of Washington could have missed it? Is it possible that collecting dues and thinking about what to lobby for is all any of these people are good for? Please go to www.nationalrealestatepost.com and look at the March 1st video. Then ask yourself what is going on?

Questions or comments: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Posted On Monday, 15 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Monday, 15 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 14 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 14 March 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 14 March 2021 00:00 Written by


Ron HowardSince 2005, Ron Howard & Associates has been one of the top teams in the Baltimore region with just under a Billion in sales. Ron's team holds the rare distinction of being one of top selling teams annually and the most favorably reviewed on Zillow with over 780+ reviews. Ron has earned his brokerages highest annual sales award - the Diamond Club - 9 times, while also being inducted into their Circle of Legends and Hall of Fame.

Ron became a real estate professional after he and a partner bought, renovated and sold dozens of properties, and he's built upon his professional experiences in sales, information technology, broadcast video production, and computer networking—from which he learned how to launch innovative, high-impact marketing campaigns. A cornerstone accomplishment was creating and launching Proforms, a contract writing software for the residential real estate industry. His specialty in the technology of automating work groups and work flow has bolstered his success in pioneering a team approach to the real estate business.

Currently Ron leads a top producing 15 person sales team in Maryland that is expanding into multiple markets. In 2018 Ron wrote Create Demand and Stop Chasing Business, which spent months as a Real Estate #1 best seller on Amazon and made the Inman "Best Real Estate Books of 2018". Ron is releasing his second book in July of 2020 – Profitability & Performance Pitstops for Real Estate Team Leaders.

Posted On Friday, 12 March 2021 00:00 Written by
The tragic automobile accident that nearly took Tiger Woods’ life recently could certainly be a lesson for all.
Remembering my classroom driver education teaching days of many years ago, I can vividly recall my continuous stern warnings to those tenth graders: Speed Kills!
 
While it may not have been announced by the investigation, we certainly can assume that, given that no physical impairment was confirmed, speed was a factor on that tricky road in Southern California.
 
While this accident doesn’t compare to the 500,000 lives that have been lost in the US due to the coronavirus, this article is not written to explain comparisons. Automobile accidents happen every day and many with fatalities. Tiger is lucky to be alive. The tragedy is his loss in the golfing world. That sport like so many others has lost superstars over the years. But what is it that seems to make this tragedy so special?
 
Tiger has had many transgressions in his 45 years. It was recently commented that Tiger has probably had more surgeries than wins on the PGA circuit. In fact, in an interview on Sunday (two days before this accident) with CBS announcer Jim Nantz at the Riviera Course, Tiger was asked if he would be ready for The Masters in Augusta, Georgia (April 8-11). Tiger responded that he hopes so, but it will depend on the doctor’s evaluation. It sure will!
 
Tiger has had five back surgeries and five knee surgeries. Most will remember that Tiger came on the scene when he appeared on the Mike Douglas television show in 1978 accompanied by his father Earl, who was his mentor and staunch encourager. On that show, Tiger demonstrated his putting and golf swing to the amazement of Douglas and his viewing audience. His amateur play was about as auspicious as it could get. He turned professional at age of 20 and began winning immediately.
He won four PGA Tour events including his first major, The Masters, winning by 12 strokes at the (youngest ever) age of 21. He has continued winning with 82 PGA Tour wins tying Sam Snead’s record.
 
With Tiger as his idol, Colin Morikawa won the World Golf Championship in Bradenton, Florida by a 3-stroke advantage. This was the first PGA tournament following Tiger’s accident. His presence was prominent at the WGC with several players adopting Tiger’s wardrobe style of traditionally wearing black pants and a red shirt on the final (fourth) day of the tournament.
 
Morikawa, who was a year old when Tiger turned pro, was also planning on that type of wardrobe, but his ordered package failed to arrive on time. Colin had a tear in his eye in his TV exit interview.
Posted On Friday, 12 March 2021 00:00 Written by
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