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August 2009
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October 2009

September 2009

Real Estate Widgets for Your Blog or Web Site

Are you a real estate agent and BLOGGER?  Are you searching for ways to add interesting and compelling content to your blog or web site?  How about adding a widget or two to your sidebar?

In case you are not yet familiar with the term “widget”…

What is a Widget?

According to Wordpress.com
A Widget is a fancy word for tools or content that you can add, arrange, and remove from the sidebars of your blog. Widgets make it easy to customize the content of your blog sidebar – the part of your blog to the left, right or sometimes top or bottom of your main content. So long as you’re running a widget enabled theme, you can customize what goes into those sidebars.

Here are the best real estate-related widgets I have come across…so far:  (Do you know of a great RE widget to add to this list?  Tell us about it in the comments.)

Zillow

  • New Local Market Explorer Wordpress Plugin – Creates “City Pages” based on a mashup of these services -  Zillow market stats and info, Yelp, Walk Score, Flickr, School Data from Education.com. The plugin does not support neighborhoods or ZIP codes – Zillow is working on that for next version.
  • Here’s the LME widget in action – I just installed it on my Business Blog Consultant  Wordpress blog:

    LME widget
  • Real Estate & Mortgage Widgets – Make sure you have a Zillow Profile and you can Co-Brand these widgets for your site.  Zillow has a myriad of widgets to choose from including:  Mortgage Calculators and rates, Your Listings, Recently Solds, and some new ones for Home Buyer Tax Credit and Loan Modification qualifiers.

vFlyer

Trulia

Or here they are listed individually:

  • TruliaCarousel Add real estate listings to your web site in an interactive and easy to use property carousel.

  • TruliaMap The TruliaMap widget shows listings from you, the real estate professional, on a colorful, interactive and easy-to-use map.

  • Trulia Snapshot With the TruliaSnapshot widget, you can show off Snapshot on your own website for free.

  • TruliaVoices Broadcast your real estate expertise with the TruliaVoices Q&A widget – an easy way to show off your answers from Trulia Voices on your own blog or website.

  • TruliaCalculator. This mortgage calculator widget adds great real estate content to your own web site or blog.

  • TruliaHomeroll The TruliaHomeroll widget shows the latest properties for sale on Trulia in your local area.

  • TruliaMinistats The TruliaMinistats Widget is a great way to keep your website visitors up to date on how prices are trending in your market.

  • TruliaStats This widget is a custom chart of the average listing price and available inventory for any city or neighborhood in the US.

  • TruliaSearchbox Now you can give your users the ability to search homes for sale on Trulia directly from your website or blog.

  • TruliaChart The TruliaChart widget is a free chart for your website or blog that gives your users helpful market trends for your local real estate market. You can show listing price, sales price, number of properties sold or number of properties for sale for any US city.

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Remembering 9-11-2001 and September National Day of Service

As I watch the Today Show's re-broadcast of the 9-11 events as they unfolded, I am reliving that surreal and shocking moment in my life in 2001.  I was on vacation with my family in Florida.  We were getting ready to go play a round of golf and we saw the Today Show's live reporting of one of the World Trade Center towers on fire, smoke billowing out from the side and top.  As Katie Couric and Matt Lauer interviewed eye-witnesses and attempted to sort out the details, we watched on live TV as the second commercial jet flew into the second tower.  In the hours,days and months that followed, I believe we (as a country and global community) all collectively went through the chaos and a range of emotions as the country reacted, mourned, got angry, and most powerfully - came together in service and support.

My sisters and I recently visited New York.  My youngest sister, Marian is a Henderson police officer and had one request for the visit - she wanted to go to the ground zero site.  We weren't able to see too much at the site as the September 11th Memorial & Museum is currently under construction and the site is covered with banners over the fencing.  I was moved by the memorial inside of the chapel.  I really got the feeling of how that sacred space directly across the street from the horrific reality and tragedy was a beacon of hope and solace.

Here is a movie of photos and videos we shot at ground zero and St Paul's Chapel:

Music track  - Our Voices Shall Be Heard (ft. Christopher Currell and Beth Quist)

I believe I am a service-oriented person. I can do more.  We all can.  It can be random and simple. Today, I re-commit myself to being of service...to myself...to others.  To being compassionate, practicing non-judgment and gratitude.

Official proclamation from President Obama (9-11-09):

"I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim September 11, 2009, as Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance..... I call upon the people of the United States to participate in community service in honor of those our Nation lost, to observe this day with other ceremonies and activities, including remembrance services, and to observe a moment of silence beginning at 8:46 a.m. eastern daylight time to honor the innocent victims who perished as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. 

From the 911 Days of Service website

"Please take a moment now to post your personal plan to perform a good deed, volunteer or engage in another charitable activity in observance of the newly established September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance. Help create a wonderful legacy that honors the victims and those who rose to service in response to the attacks on America."


The Power of Social Media for Business

If you haven't seen this video - take a look...Very powerful and compelling stats and facts about how social media is impacting us on all levels. 

Are you ready to learn more about Business Blogging & Social Media?  Don't miss our next CE training Class:

Real Estate Blogging 101

Wednesday, September 23rd, 1:00 to 4:00 pm
First United Mortgage Building Do not mapquest - The street does not exist!
(215 - between S. Buffalo and S. Durango - off W. Sunset)  Here is a MAP

$45 in advance; $55 at the door
Register online at http://www.careerrealty.com/contact_training.htm

 

Join the Wanderers Club for $67/mth membership fee to access all of the member benefits including monthly training webinars, group coaching sessions, online training courses, private Facebook and LinkedIn Groups.

FREE Basic membership is free and includes:

WBNL Coaching Real Estate Business Plan Online Course and Downloads


Las Vegas makes the cover of Time Magazine - Uncovering the truth and one more reason to become a CSP

I was in New York City, when this "sensationalized, let's write about the seedier side of life and Las Vegas because that's what sells"... cover story in TIME MAGAZINE hit the news stands.  I read it and have been meaning to comment on it and set the record straight. 

Las Vegas on cover of Time August 15, 2009 If you missed the article - here is a link to it on Time's website :

Less Vegas: The Casino Town Bets on a Comeback

Today, I read Paul Francis's blog and brilliant review of the story - so I highly recommend checking it out!

Las Vegas Real Estate Agent Creates Brouhaha with Time Magazine Article

 

I agree with Paul whole-hearted-ly.  He chronicles the fallout from the article with links to the various other newspaper articles. My initial reaction to the Time article was - wow, talk about painting a grim picture and making it appear that the examples the author used were the rule rather than the exception.  Suffice it to say, although there may be a small percentage of foreclosure homes in a "trashed-out" state and one can always find someone who attempts to take advantage of a situation - the reality in Las Vegas is we are moving inventory - from REOs to short sales to traditional resales. 

And the majority of the inventory is in good shape. And, the majority of "struggling" homeowners in Las Vegas are dealing with stress, crisis and serious decisions.  They are looking for real solutions and we, as an industry, can step up now to be part of the solution and not the problem.  Short sales can be a viable answer for homeowners who are doing their best to avoid foreclosure and have a legitimate hardship that is documentable. 

In August 2009, foreclosure (REO) properties accounted for about 70% of all single family residential (SFR) sales.  Another 12% of August sales were short sale transactions.  The average sales prices across the Las Vegas valley is currently about $125,000.   The prediction remains that shorts sales and REO properties will dominate our market for 2-3 years at a minimum.

So, as a Las Vegas real estate professional, what are you doing to focus on the business you want to attract? 

  • Have you made the investment is your time and education to learn everything you must know in the current market? 
  • Have you made the appropriate adjustment in your business plan to skillfully handle both foreclosure and short sale properties? 
  • Do you feel comfortable sitting down with a prospective purchaser or home seller and explain the market and possible options and solutions for their real estate needs?

If the answer is no or not quite - consider seriously attending the Certified Short-Sale Professional designation course that Steve Kitnick and I teach every month in Las Vegas.  Join almost 350 CSP graduates in leveraging the knowledge and power of the most-cutting edge training available for short sales.  This course is ever-evolving and loaded with "how-to" steps and techniques to help you embrace the reality of our short sale market. 

Visit my Training Schedule page for all upcoming training class dates.

Visit www.WBNLCoaching.com to learn more about our coaching program and online training membership options. Your FREE, basic membership includes a complete real estate business-planning course and downloads.