real estate

Don’t Miss Out!

by Camilla Harvey on June 21, 2017

Ocean Wave

We are officially midway through 2017, now is a great time to sit back and reflect on the year so far and to begin preparing your organization for the inevitable evolutions we will experience throughout coming months and into 2018. Do you sometimes feel like your Board of Directors and key staff could benefit from a WAV Group overview of what is happening in the real estate industry today? Could your organization benefit from an information resource like WAV Group to characterize the rapid change in our industry? Would you like an informed review of how similar MLS boards are developing centers of excellence and outstanding performance? Join us for the WAVes of Change! Our WAVes of Change Series delivers regular industry insights and overviews of the topics shaping our future. Four times a year we present a live webinar, usually falling after major conferences such as AEI, NAR Mid-Year, CMLS and NAR Annual. These featured webinars provide exclusive looks at WAV Group research, emerging technology trends, broker challenges, and policy discussion, as well as other stimulating and engaging topics from key conferences. We provide updates on projects like AMP, Upstream, Broker Public Portal, Zilllow, Data Licensing, mergers and acquisitions, data sharing, and more. You’ll be Joining Many Other Successful MLSs and Associations… Many successful MLSs and Associations already understand the value of this stimulating and cost-effective way to keep their members up to speed on industry initiatives that make an impact. WAV Group will also answer questions that your board and staff have about the climate of the industry, address technology changes, as well as provide guidance on some best practices. The webinar series also allows for an opportunity for your voice to be heard, regarding issues we have in common, relevant questions as well as sharing potential strategies that lead to optimal success. Get Pricing Today You simply cannot afford to miss out on this vital subscription! Please contact camilla@wavgroup.com to schedule a call, get pricing, and take advantage of the series today! Please join your Association and MLS colleagues for this insightful series!  You’ll be glad you did!

{ 0 comments }

Google Local Guides Are Great For Real Estate

by Victor Lund on June 13, 2017

Google Local Guides

If you remember the rage about FourSquare years ago, its coming back again. But this time, Google is leading the way to create local experts and Google Maps is the platform. So set up your account on Google Local Guides and get going! If you participate a lot, (hit 50 reviews), you will be highlighted as a top reviewer on Google Maps for Apple’s iOS and Android. Why? Well, that is only something that you can answer. Like so many other social media strategies, it needs to be something that you enjoy doing. Also, consider this – Google Maps is the most popular mobile maps product on the planet – you and your brand will show up when people are using the map. Here is something kinda funny too. A lot of broker websites use the Google Map API to map properties. Imagine if consumers on your competitor’s website saw your name next to popular area hotspots surrounding listings. Funny right? (PS. If you are worried about this happening on your website – talk to your website vendor – they may need to upgrade you to premium maps). With Local Guides, you get points for validating things like writing reviews, validating that a business is still in business, validating their hours of operation, taking photos, adding new places, etc. If you do a really good job, you get badges and can become something like the Mayor of your community. Curate Neighborhood Experiences Local Guides have another feature that allows you to create lists. These can be a very cool way to give a new home owner the lay of the land around their home. Here’s how. Create A Neighborhood Map Open the Google Maps App. Tap Menu – Your Place – Saved In the bottom right tap Add + Enter the name and description of your Neighborhood Tap Save Adding Places to the Neighborhood Open the Google Maps App Search for a place or tap it on the map At the bottom, tap the place’s name or address Tap Save Chose a list. To create a new list, tap New List + Share List Open the Google Maps App Tap Menu – Your Places – Saved Next to the list you want to share, tap More – Choose Option Hide/Show on your map Share List When you share the list with a client, they will be able to add it […]

{ 0 comments }

Big Data Can Drive Bigger Broker Margins

by Victor Lund on June 9, 2017

customer reports

WAV Group spends a lot of time consulting with brokers on how to re-margin their business. We published a paper in 2013 called Harvesting Business From Broker Data.  That paper characterized the methods that we developed with a number of brokers to harvest business from across the enterprise of title, mortgage, residential, relocation, insurance, commercial, and property management businesses. It has worked very well for many brokers to recapture repeat transactions and new business though cross sell. In many ways, the rethinking that went into the thesis around harvesting business across the enterprise was the first intellectual break from the linear approach of Advertising for Lead Generation to Lead Maturation to Lead Conversion. Brokers were spending too much time trying to onboard new customers and far to little time staying connected with customers they have already won. Strangely, there has been a shift in advertising dollars away from the broker and more toward the team and agent. This shift is largely reflective of commission economics. But also driven in big part by Zillow remodeling their brokerage platform. If top producing agents and teams are capping out and getting 80% to 100% commission, there is no contribution to broker budgets for advertising. How does the broker get commission margin back? Referrals! WAV Group is now in a position to support brokers to re-margin their business with big data programs that we have been maturing. The programs key off of the relocation and referral commission programs that brokers retain about 35% commission on. Brokers who increase their referral business stand to reap greater margin rewards. Brokers are in a position to purchase big data solutions that use predictive analytics to generate leads for consumers upstream of Internet leads from websites or portals. CoreLogic, SmartZip, Opcity, and a host of other companies are framing up these solutions for brokers today. WAV Group works with brokerage firms to make these programs pay out. Here is the rub. The broker must become competent at developing these opportunities and purchasing solutions efficiently. The challenge for brokers is taking this strategy, understanding how it fits into your business plan, allocating resources, implementation, and managing effectiveness. You cannot just buy the service and expect the checks to start rolling in. This strategy needs to be developed as a center of excellence in your company. Brokers Can Win! WAV Group has done some experimenting with market buy-outs. In some […]

{ 0 comments }

Luxury house with pool

Customer experience is the cornerstone of luxury purchases. Buying luxury yachts, jewelry, clothing, cars, restaurants……you name it – its always different. Now lets look at the other side of the coin. Have you noticed that retail in your downtown area is dying? Have you noticed that malls are struggling? Macy’s, Target, Walmart, Gap, Nike and so many other retailers are struggling. The silent voices are the small, non-chain merchants, commonly known as the mom and pop retailers. When is the last time you went into an independent toy store? The consumer has gone online, and Amazon is the category killer. Duh! Right? Consumers use the internet to shop.  It is a lot easier to find products and pricing using your keyboard and a browser than it is to go in and out of stores, parking, cashier lines, etc.     Retail Redefined If I were in the retail business today, I would create a great in-store online shopping experience. You valet your car. Going inside, you can sit down in a comfortable lounge with waitresses and bartenders. You order your merchandise as you sip your latte’. Runners collect your merchandise from the attached warehouse. When you finish your beverage or snack, the valet has placed your items in the trunk and brought your car up. Luxury Retail Have you looked on Amazon for Prada?  Louis Vuitton? GEORGIO ARMANI? It’s not there. They do not sell their products online, and this is true of many luxury brands. What makes Rodeo Drive work is that the products there cannot be purchased anywhere but in the store. Notice how well luxury malls are doing – South Coast Plaza in Orange County and Fashion Island in Newport Beach. Amazon cannot touch them. Is Online Real Estate like Online Retail Not yet. Zillow launched Instant Offers to test this. They focused the product launch on the investor market. Investors do not really care about the purchase as much as they care about the economic fundamentals. They trust inspectors and appraisers. They trust their data and analytics about future prices and rental prices. Investors are a perfect market for online real estate. Beyond that, it will take time for the market to mature. If I were to forecast this opportunity forward for Zillow, I think that they have a major opportunity to make real estate investing easy. And the housing market is a great strategic investment […]

{ 0 comments }

Broker Public Portal Inks Deal to Become Homesnap

by Victor Lund on January 19, 2017

Homesnap Logo

●     Homesnap will be a national MLS consumer search portal ●     Portal will adhere to Fair Display Guidelines   ROCKVILLE, MD, January 19, 2017 — Broker Public Portal, LLC and Homesnap, Inc. have executed final agreements to create the National Broker Portal, LLC, a joint venture that is equally owned by the two companies. The parties agreed that the best path to success would be served by forming a mutual partnership with Homesnap providing technology, brand and operational expertise to the new company, rather than composing a vendor agreement. The National Association of REALTORS modified their model MLS policy to designate an MLS consumer facing website as a basic benefit of the MLS. In turn, more than 50 leading brokers and 50 leading MLSs developed the case for a national consumer site rather than 700 independent local MLS sites. “HAR.com and a number of other MLSs have been able to capture a reasonable share of voice in online consumer search,” said Rebecca Jensen, President and CEO of Midwest Real Estate Data (MRED). “But we believe that the best opportunity for success will be paved by MLSs who focus on a single, national strategy.” MRED is one of several MLSs whose board of directors have already authorized participation in the portal, including a $1 per subscriber fee that will be paid to the National Broker Portal each month. Other MLSs committed to the portal include Northstar MLS (Minneapolis), Connecticut MLS, NORMLS (Cleveland), CRIS (Akron), Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors and Rochester Genesee Region Real Estate Service. In anticipation of this initiative being formalized, MRED launched the BPP/Homesnap app in July of 2016. “Adoption has reached over 25% of MRED’s 40,000+ Realtor customers in just a few months,” added Jensen. In addition, now that the joint venture has been finalized, MLSs representing over 200,000 subscribers have requested the new National Broker Portal MLS Agreement to review and present to their boards. “Homesnap is honored to have been selected as the technology partner to this inspired vision for the future of real estate search,” says Homesnap co-founder Steve Barnes. “As a company, we have always considered ourselves a business partner to the MLS and subscribed to the principles of the Fair Display Guidelines for MLS consumer sites.” Over 400,000 real estate agents have access to Homesnap Pro today, and the Homesnap app is used by over 4 million consumers. “This joint venture […]

{ 0 comments }

NYC Party Next Week – Hamilton

by Marilyn Wilson on January 11, 2017

tonic bar

Every year a bunch of us industry road warriors get together while we are in NYC to have an late night off campus party. This year, we will be meeting up at Tonic West. And as usual, John Heithaus has pulled together some of the best NYC musicians who will be playing a few sets of good old rock and roll along with some features from the hit musical Hamilton. Because it is a private underground event, only a few people have tickets. If you want to come reach out to your friends at one of the following companies: Realtor.com, Buyside, Moxiworks, Imprev, Wolfnet, CloudCMA, NAR Center for REALTOR Technology, Road to Close, and Real Estate Digital. Of course – Victor, Marilyn, and Kevin can also hook you up. As usual, this party starts at 9 PM after dinner and the band plays until Midnight. I am not sure if bars still close in NYC – We buy the first 600 drinks – after that you are on your own. Details: Venue: Tonic West, 727 Seventh Avenue, NY, 10019 Date and Time: 19th January 2017 9pm – 12:00am Dress Code: Party/Casual

{ 2 comments }

Should Brokers Do REALTOR Background Checks

by Victor Lund on January 4, 2017

Background Check

Too often, brokers and managers get caught up in recruiting goals that they skip some basic best practices – Background Checks, Customer Satisfaction Checks, etc. Perhaps agents should be checking out the backgrounds of their broker too. Before the New Year, Todd Kohlhepp, a real estate broker was linked to 7 murders and a kidnapping. Todd was the broker in charge of TKA Real Estate. Inman news reported that the guy had spent 14 years in jail for kidnapping a 14-year-old girl. Of course – his agent ratings on popular listing syndication websites gave glowing reviews. (The agent has been removed from those sites). Research Production This case points to some good fundamentals about proper recruiting. You may want to start out by building a target list of agents to recruit. Just as agents focus on customers, brokers should focus on agents. BrokerMetrics® from Teradatum and Trendgraphix are both good for this. You can see things like historic transaction history. How many brokerages they have worked for. Transaction dollar volume. Transaction location. There is a ton of intelligence available. Do your research. Recruit Around Culture Consider the cultural fit. I recently did a research project to look at Agent Profile pages on a broker website. We took stock of the brokerage culture that we could glean from simply looking at the headshots of agents. Diving in deeper, we would look at the profile of office managers and how they looked relative to the agents they recruit. It is astounding to simply look at profiles and pick out agents that look like they fit vs. others that seem out of place (or missing photos all together). Surprisingly, production numbers correlate to profile photos when you ask a group of people to pick the most and least productive agents. A photo says a lot. But deeper than that, take a look at the agent’s social media profiles – look at their friends, their posts, their reach, their engagement. It is never a perfect science, but simple observation goes a long way. Consider the risks. We all know that a bad apple ruins the bushel. But sometimes brokers take too much risk in bringing in agents that don’t fit. That can really demoralize an office, or worse yet – a brokerage. I seriously doubt that consumers are going to want to work with agents form a brokerage that has felons on their roster. […]

{ 0 comments }

Companies Are Not Designed to Merge

by Victor Lund on January 3, 2017

Merger Puzzle

WAV Group has participated and observed the mass amounts of merger activity that has hit a high pitch in 2016. It is happening at all levels of our industry – agents merging into teams, brokers merging into mega brokers, Association of REALTORS® mergers, and MLS mergers. Based upon our work schedule for Q1 of 2017, this trend does not seem to have any ebb in sight. WAV Group will facilitate more M&A activity in Q1 than any other quarter in our firm’s history. Company founders and Boards of Directors are often not open-minded about mergers. The first reaction to a merger discussion is naturally defensive because the merger itself often pits a company that is stronger against one that is weaker. The stronger company often overlooks the centers of excellence that the weaker company has. The weaker company often feels dominated and under appreciated. Commit To The Evaluation I fondly recall an awkward meeting where two boards who were considering a merger were stuffed into a junior suite at an industry conference to interview consultants for merger facilitation. My responsibility was to pitch them on WAV Group. I started out by asking them if they had decided to enter into discussions in good faith, had they signed a non-disclosure agreement, were they willing to share financial information, etc. They looked at me like I was crazy. Consultants do not build consensus. They build merger models. I went on to explain that Boards must commit to a full out merger evaluation to have any chance of success. Boards must agree to enter into merger discussions and create merger models that are real. This involves performing customer research, financial modeling, governance modeling, staffing, communications, contract review, etc. In effect, you fully plan your merger before you ever call the question at a board meeting. The role of a consultant is to build the model, collecting information from both sides and working collaboratively to see what the new entity looks like. Both boards should have an answer to every question. The Threat or Opportunity In many mergers, there needs to be some notion of a shared threat or opportunity. It begs the question, what happens if the merger does not go through. If the answer is nothing, then there is probably no reason to merge. However if the answer is tied to protecting both organizations from a mutual threat, or allowing both organizations […]

{ 0 comments }

Time For Brokers To Clean Up Online Profiles

by Victor Lund on December 1, 2016

Online House

Real Estate Agent and Brokerage Profiles Online are a mess. Specifically, agent and broker profiles on the broker website, Zillow, Realtor.com, and Homes.com are naturally in disarray at this time of year. With transaction volume low during December, it is a very good time to clean everything up. Most brokerages audited by WAV Group consulting average 10% inaccuracy, which reduces lead generation and undermines a firm’s online reputation. Start With Data Collection It is a relatively easy task to collect the data necessary to update profiles. Start with your offices. “Offices have identities,” says Marilyn Wilson, partner with WAV Group. “When we audit brokerage firms we find that companies who have moved offices rarely put forth the effort to remove the old offices from Association Data Bases, MLS Data Bases, Brokerage websites, and syndication websites,” according to Wilson. There are services that can do this for you. WAV Group has resources that can automate the process on major search sites like Yelp, Google, and others. But the syndication sites require more effort, typically requiring the broker to log into the publisher site to make corrections. Agent profiles are the heavy lifting. It is vital that you collect the profile image of all of your agents, detail their contact information, and help them curate a reasonable bio of at least 250 words. Here is a quick guide for 5 Best Tips to Create a Powerful Bio (Sherry McCormick) Audit December is a great time to audit your syndication websites. Look not only for agent and broker profiles, but you may also want to measure the effectiveness of the sites where you syndicate. “If you are going to share your property listings with third party websites, you should do so with intention,” says Victor Lund, listing syndication specialist with WAV Group. Here are a few things to consider” Does the website adhere to the fair display guidelines (see fairdisplay.org)? Do you get leads from the site? Test it – inquire about one of your listings on each site to see if the lead is produced in your lead management system. Review the terms of use. Many brokers may not be aware of the terms, especially the liabilities related to listing content and copyright. Check the agent profiles for every agent in your company. If they are incomplete, you may be missing out on leads and lead conversions. Document “It is a good idea […]

{ 1 comment }

Drones: A Game-Changer for Real Estate Marketing

by Victor Lund on September 27, 2016

Drone flying by house

For most real estate agents, marketing with aerial photography or video has been considered an extravagance reserved only for high-dollar properties and luxury homes. However, a new federal policy now permits Realtors to market properties at all price-points in ways that were cost-prohibitive in the past. The “Small Unmanned Aircraft Rule,” expands the possibility for commercial drone usage for the real estate industry—without the previous restrictions and complicated application process. With this new accessibility, aerial photography and video are shaping up to be the next evolution of transformative real estate marketing solutions. While video has already proven its value for Realtors, drone footage can now deliver a better value proposition. Currently, 70% of home buyers used video to tour the inside of a home. In addition, homes listed with video receive four times more inquiries than those without video. But, now that it is fairly simple to obtain a remote pilot certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for a mere $150 by studying independently and taking a test on basic aeronautical rules and concepts. It’s a simple matter of supply and demand: With more people positioned to provide aerial footage of properties, the costs integrating it into an agent’s online marketing strategy will inevitably go down. In an increasingly competitive market landscape, drone photography and video offers a unique approach for differentiating an agent’s services. Aerial shots provide more depth and dimension than standard street level photography, telling a story about the home, neighborhood, and surrounding area while increasing the emotional connection of prospect. This added-value can create an upscale feel for even modest home listings. But, drone imagery not only makes a listing shine above the others, it also showcases an agent’s marketing thought leadership. Of course, as with any disruptive technology, early adopters of drone photography and videography will gain the most competitive advantage—until consumers come to expect it as a standard service offered by all agents. Research shows that there’s a first-mover advantage to technology adoption; pioneers are more likely to experience increased revenue and market share. Other Realtors will follow suit as the technology bears marketing results. As Will Caldwell, CEO of the real estate technology company Rivolix, predicts: “Aerial photography will become another line item under the photos and virtual tour column when marketing a listing. Consumers will begin to demand it, as there is no question more people will enjoy watching it.” Driving […]

{ 1 comment }

Consumer Questions a Broker Website Must Answer

by Victor Lund on April 25, 2016

Businessman Protecting Piggy Bank And House Model

There are less than 2% of the homes for sale around the nation today. Typically, that number is 3.5%. Hence we are in a sellers’ market. So the consumer thinks – “Where am I in the market?” What Home Can I Buy? Over 90% of consumers looking to purchase a home have one to sell. The rest are currently renters or second home purchasers. Buying a home is never about buying what you want. It is always about buying what is right for you. The old story of Location, Location, Location is a bit lost on me today, unless it stands for Location Convenience, Location Suitability, and Location Affordability. There may be some others, like Location Timing as well. Regardless of where you live, there are places where you need to go – like work, school, shopping, or whatever. Where you live as a proximity to those things counts for you. I love TLCengine because it allows consumers to plot those points of interest and find properties in the radius of convenience. This also has a major influence on affordability as proximity mitigates commute times, insurance prices, childcare costs, etc. Unfortunately, I think that the application is only available in the NorthstarMLS market area MLS. Suitability is more of a lifestyle question. How do you flow in your home? Beds, garages, yards, kitchens, dining rooms, living rooms, and local area amenities change the attractiveness of a location based upon the suitability to the people living in the property and in the neighborhood. This is why I think that lifestyle search engines like Onboard Informatics is so important to consumers. Affordability is perhaps the biggest concern. Consumers choose unrealistic price ranges all of the time when they are searching. They really need to be pre-qualified before they can truly search for a home unless they are paying cash. What about closing costs and estimated and historical property taxes? Most broker websites do not have the information to understand this unless they are licensing data from CoreLogic or some other source. I love that CoreLogic is planning to make this data available to website vendors through their new RETS server called Trestle. It will open the innovation door wide! What’s My Home Worth? That is a loaded question, one that created the most valuable company in real estate – Zillow. Half of the real estate industry pivots around this question, as it […]

{ 1 comment }

The New Process for RFPs in Real Estate

by Victor Lund on March 30, 2016

Display showing bad, average good, person selecting

The RFP process has been a practice of companies acquiring technology solutions forever. RFP stands for Request for Proposal. The RFP focuses on drawing out product features and functionality. Although RFPs have always asked questions about the company, that is perhaps the most important component of RFPs in 2016. Today, I would argue that an RFP really is a Request for Partnership. This change was caused by a quiet revolution. During the Y2K surge that transitioned software from mainframe to browser, there was recognition that the old process of software development was too bureaucratic, slow, and overly regimented. An alternative to traditional project management that emerged in the early 2000s is called Agile software development. They use terms like Scrum, Extreme Programing, Dynamic System Development Method, Feature-Drive Development and many others. The overarching focus of all of these methodologies is to deliver frequent, high quality working software, delivered in “sprints,” which are measured in weeks, not months. The result is continuous improvement. You are experiencing this new methodology routinely on your mobile devices. If you have notices that your iPhone asks you to update your apps all of the time, that’s it. DocuSign can illustrate an example in real estate. In the first two months of the year, they have done 18 new feature releases for their transaction management solution. The software that they offered in January has evolved in two short months. It’s not just DocuSign, this is the way it’s done for most software developers. Our Typical RFP process for an MLS or large broker is to write a draft, go through an approval and editing process, then provide the vendor with 2-4 weeks to respond. During that time line, the features of the application could change dramatically. That is the beauty of Agile development, and why companies need to adjust the way that they look at vendor selection. My key takeaway: the RFP should focus less on features and more on the frequency and quality of their releases. How fast are they evolving? A new way to learn about your Request for Partnership is to take a look at the epic stories that they are writing for their Agile sprints. Take a look back three months and see how many releases they have made, and what functions were delivered. From this type of research you can see the impact of these releases. It will give you a […]

{ 0 comments }

Who Will Install The Giant Rats of Real Estate?

by Victor Lund on July 10, 2015

If you visit New York City regularly, you will sometimes encounter a giant inflatable rat on the sidewalk outside businesses experiencing union disputes. Organized labor has also joined in the fight against companies like Airbnb and Uber. Ken Jenny of Trancen often remarks that: “with Airbnb, you have one of the largest hotel companies in the world who does not own a single hotel room. With Uber, you have the largest taxi cab company in the world who does not own a single taxi.” I would add that Facebook has become the largest publisher in the world and they do not write a single word. YouTube is the largest broadcaster in the world and does not make a single video. Incidentally, my 12 year old reads Instagram more than newspapers and watches far more YouTube than television. There is little doubt that in the future, the largest real estate brokerage in the country will not have a single listing or show a single property to a buyer. Anyone can compose a list of who will disrupt real estate. But the more interesting list to create is who is likely to defend the industry. The most obvious answer is the NAR. But I do not see that happening. The National Association of REALTORS is not a Union. It is a trade association that lives on the cornerstone of a code of ethics. If it is in the best interest of the trade group and the consumer to fend off the uberification of real estate, then they should stand up and deliver a few inflatable rats in front of businesses that are objectionable. I have witnessed the NAR march on Washington during the Midyear. I wonder if we will see a digital march or a financial march in our future.

{ 1 comment }

WAV Group Named to the Swanepoel Power 200

by Victor Lund on January 14, 2015

The most comprehensive list of the most powerful and influential people in the real estate industry has once again been released. Known as the SP200 (Swanepoel Power 200), this annual list is published by Stefan Swanepoel every January. There have been numerous other lists from time to time, but the SP200 stands as a milestone in the comprehensiveness, detail and objectivity it strives to portray. You can review the entire 2014/2015 list in detail at www.sp200.com. Comparable to Forbes, Fortune, JD Powers and other outside the industry lists, the SP200 utilizes a large selection of criteria. It takes hundreds of hours to put something like this together and often the people on the list are gratified, but those who do not make the list are disappointed. I had a phone call Stefan Swanepoel to understand more about his list and why he does it. “Our goal is to create an authoritative list by using information such as position held within a given company, size of company, tenure in the company, tenure in the industry, education, accomplishments, impact the person has had on the industry or is expected to have on the industry in the foreseeable future. We combine all of the stats, facts–as well as 26 years of research in the industry having personally met most of the people on the list–into our own unique SP200 algorithm. The list is as objective and real as we can make it. No pay-to-play, advertising or outside influencing is allowed. “We call this the power list for a reason. It is not just the influence a person has but the impact and control each of these people can exercise. Many of these people command large budgets, multiple resources, buy and sell companies, and can effect significant change. “We divide the SP200 into multiple categories for easier evaluation – Corporate Executives, Brokerage Executives, Technology Executives, Organized Real Estate, Outside Powers, Social Influencers, and Thought Leaders. My team and I, including my executive editor Rob Hahn, invested over 400 hours of specific SP200 research to provide this list as a service to the industry.” A term like Power is pretty elusive to define. So, I asked Swanepoel to provide his definition as applies to the list. “Power is defined as the ability to control, direct or influence people, companies, events, and circumstances. Powerful people cause change. Powerful people make a difference.” There is no doubt that people like Richard […]

{ 0 comments }

New iPad is here – more fun, more fast

by Marilyn Wilson on March 16, 2012

ipad image

I woke up at 3:42 am pacific time this morning, only to realize I was probably one of the first people on the West Coast to see the “official” launch of the latest version of the iPad. While there is no AMAZING new innovation that we’ve never seen before, they have taken the device to new levels in a few interesting ways.  First, there is a new high definition screen called a “Retinal” screen that delivers more pixels per square inch than anything we’ve seen to date including high definition televisions, according to the video promotions from Apple. According to Ratedgamergear.com, it includes a new 5 megapixel camera which turns the entire iPad into a viewfinder so you can be sure to get great shots which are framed properly. Coupled with the new camera is a new version of iLife media software which makes it even easier to create photo collages and “trailer”-type videos. The new version of Garage Band within the iLife suite allows up to 4 iPads to be networked together to play virtual music together. Pretty fun stuff for those that would have time to do such things. For real estate, the high res camera and viewing screen is going to make viewing homes a whole lot more fun, I would guess.  The new iLife suite will make it easier for agents to get creative with the ways they display images.  Who needs a virtual tour when you can create your own photo montage in minutes that can be shared easily with clients?   It could be a whole new way to break through the crowd in a listing presentation.  A savvy agent could be a photo collage while walking around the property with a homeowner.

{ 0 comments }