I'm writing this as I prepare to leave San Antonio, Texas after attending two very informative conventions. The Cartus Convention and the Joe Manausa Real Estate Convention both were full of informative sessions and I am convinced that what Tallahassee is currently seeing in the real estate market is very much prevalent throughout the United States (and even the rest of the world).
Many REALTORS® have only seen good times for the last ten years or so. The lectures and seminars at international conventions such as these help equip professionals in the real estate industry who need to help customers in today's difficult housing market. The techniques and processes used during the past ten years just do not work (if you want proof of that, just check out the Real Estate Sales Success Graph that shows a current trend of 25% of the homes listed are being sold!).
Real Estate Lessons Learned At The Joe Manausa Real Estate Convention In San Antonio
There was so much to do and so many great nationally recognized real estate experts at this year's Joe Manausa Real Estate Convention in San Antonio that I hard a hard time assembling my agenda for the entire week. My key focus was to attend as many seminars as possible that would provide value back in the Tallahassee real estate market. The following is just a brief summary of what I found:
Accessible Housing is a topic with a focus on the structural features of accessible homes highlighting what real estate professionals need to know to help find properties for clients with special needs. The course included tips and guidelines about what consumers need to look for and what they can do to make a non-accessible home accessible to fit their needs.
Wireless Tools Workshop gave great information on new tools that real estate professionals can use while away from the office. With more and more real estate agents working "on the road" rather than the traditional model of being "tethered to the desk," this course gave great examples how to accomplish traditional activities from the car and home office.
Avoiding Litigation by doing a better job, both with customer service as well as through a better understanding of the legal issues that are most pressing in today's challenging real estate market. This course featured many of the "red flag" issues that are hot as well as explaining the disclosures that are needed in the "real world."
Blogging and Beyond was worth attending twice, as it covered the newest techniques that are absolutely required when marketing a home for sale in today's challenging real estate market. In today's market, clients are more internet savvy than ever before, with 92% of buyers beginning their search on the internet, real estate companies must have a red-hot real estate blog and strategic internet plan if they expect to sell the homes that they have been hired to sell. Blogging, social networks, videos and YouTube, and search engine optimization were all part of this great, information-laden course.
Century21.com Web Tour delivered innovative search features and consumer tools with an enhanced home buying and selling experience. Consumers are increasingly using the internet to search for properties and the New Century21.com Web Site is very powerful. Many of the features that we see on the Joe Manausa Real Estate Web Site were inspired by our Franchise site.
Rebuilding Your Value Package was an important seminar on explaining how to present the benefits of your company to home buyers, home sellers, and your fellow real estate professionals. As most companies have undergone significant changes (or closed) due to the severe decline in the market, it is important for the real estate consumer to understand what that company can do for them in TODAY's real estate market.
Restaffing Your Real Estate Office was very intriguing as most real estate brokers are faced with major losses in productive real estate agents due to the market change. This program focused on finding the right type of people who can hustle in a tough environment as well as how to implement the type of training programs that are required for the new agent entering the real estate market. Fortunately, Joe Manausa Real Estate is the industry leader in online training and has a whole complement of training courses that will allow new agents to get up and running faster than our competition. This has been supported by our office as we have had many "Tallahassee Board of REALTORS® Rookie of the Year" winners in our office over the past several years.
Financing's Hottest Alternative - FHA loans were traditionally the hottest loan in town, until the boom that began back early in the decade. New loan programs made the great benefits of the FHA program obsolete .... until they were no more! New FHA loan guidelines can help many more buyers today then they could in the past. We have seen great updates including increased maximum loan amounts, changes to FHA mortgage insurance premiums, minimum down payment requirements, no-score borrowers, non-purchasing spouse guidelines, non-Occupying Co-borrower guidelines, as well as optimizing seller contributions to work for both the seller and the buyer. FHA is back!
Generational Differences was a course that showed the different motivators for each of the active-consumer generation that we face in today's real estate market. It is imperative to understand that the majority of home buyers today will not respond to the marketing techniques that have been very effective in the past.
Harnessing The Power Of The Mortgage as a retirement planning tool offered insight into the benefits of leverage and how to utilize the home mortgage with retirement planning. This session included a discussion on the pros and cons of reverse mortgages home owner accelerator loans, home equity lines of credit and much more. A solid real estate professional should be able to provide great guidance in the customers' home financing needs.
Open House By Design was an excellent and timely course, as most agents that do open houses only do them to appease sellers who believe "not enough is being done to sell the home." An open house without the right week-long preparation though has proven to have less than 1% chance of selling the home, so this course focused on the preparation and process required for an effective open house.
Short Sales And REO was an excellent seminar focused on the growing business of distressed properties (and properties owned by banks and relocation companies). Being the leader in distressed property disposition in Tallahassee, I knew we could never be "too educated" in this very important area.
Staging Strategies For Today's Market discussed the process and methods for integrating staging into our business model. Gone are the days of sticking a sign in the yard to sell a home, each home today has a ton of competition and the home must shine! Pre-market preparation is a must if you want to sell a home, and staging is the the process that we utilize.
Much, Much More - There was so much more but I am only one person! The Joe Manausa Real Estate Convention in San Antonio was definitely worth the time and expense of attending and I am confident that I will bring back a wealth of value for my Joe Manausa Real Estate Agents, our Tallahassee home buyers and clients who need to sell a home in Tallahassee!
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Joe Manausa, MBA is a 26 year veteran of real estate brokerage in Tallahassee, Florida and has owned and managed his own company since 1992. He is a daily blogger with content that focuses on real estate analytics and providing his clients with a tactical advantage in today's challenging market.