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50 YEAR OLD COMMERCIAL THAT IS RELEVANT TODAY

50 YEAR OLD COMMERCIAL THAT IS RELEVANT TODAY

“Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them.” – Ronald Reagan

This is a 50-year-old commercial that first came out on vinyl. I don’t know when the video was put to the audio, but it is so relevant to today’s new health mandate from Obama that it is scary.

Click HERE to see this one minute video. Just give it a few seconds to load and turn up your speakers.

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YOUR GOALS MUST BE SPECIFIC AND MEASURABLE

YOUR GOALS MUST BE SPECIFIC AND MEASURABLE

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex, overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.” –  Mark Twain

Key element number 3 in achieving your goals is that your goals must be specific and measurable.   Just saying you would like to make $100,000.00 this year won’t get you $100,000.00.  You need to map out your plan of action.  This course of action fits the self-employed as opposed to a person drawing a salary. If you are not self-employed, then your salary is tied to what the company thinks you are worth.  An employee will either have to prove he/she is worth more, change companies where there is room to grow or do something on the side that is your own business and where you control how much you make.

Remember, just saying you want to make $100,000.00 isn’t enough; you need to break that amount down into months, then weeks, then days and hours if that will help you visualize the way to achieve your goal.

For this example, I will use real estate sales, since that is what I am most familiar with, but you can apply it to just about any sales position or position where you are paid by the size jobs you bring to the company.

Let’s say the average sales commission – on your side – is $1,500; how do you figure you can make $100,000.00.  Simply divide 100,000 by 1,500 to come up with the amount of deals you need to achieve that number.  So 100,000/1,500 = 66.66 – we will round that number up to 67.  Now you are going to divide 67 by 12 – the number of months in the year (or you can divide by 11 or 10 if you want to take 1 or 2 months off during the year.)  Since you are just starting out, we’ll use the number 12. So 67/12=5.58.  That means you will have to make 5.58 sales every month, or rounded up, 6 sales every month. If you prefer calculating by the quarter, or every 3 months, you will need to make 18 sales every quarter.

OK that sounds easy enough, but are you going to sit and wait for those sales to drop in your lap, or are you going to do something pro-active to get those sales.  Let’s think in terms of how many people it takes to get one listing, or how many homes you need to show before you make one sale.

Let’s start with listings. I’m going to use an arbitrary number, but you will need to find your own number.  Ok, lets say it takes talking to 15 people before you get one listing and you want to acquire 5 listings per month. How many people do you need to talk to in one month to get those 5 listings?  Simply multiply 5×15 to get the number 75.  Now if you break that down into weeks you will divide 75 by 4.33 which equals 17.32.  I always like to round-up since it will be hard to talk to a third of a person.  So now we have a number – 18 people you need to talk to in one week.  You can break that down even further by dividing 18/7=2.57 people per day. Again, round-up to 3 people per day. So now you have a plan of action on getting more listings. To get 5 more listings in one month, you will have to talk to about 3 people per day who are interested in listing their home.

We all know, in this economy, just because you have a listing it doesn’t mean it will sell. You also have to try to sell homes.  On average, how many homes do you show a prospective buyer before they purchase a home – 10, 20, 30?  For this example, we will just use the number 12.  You will need to show 12 homes before your buyer decides to purchase one. You want to sell 6 homes in one month, therefore you will need 6 buyers and show each buyer 12 homes. That’s a whopping 72 homes in one month, or 17 homes in one week – a little easier number to work with! Break that number down more and you need to show 3 homes per day – 17/7=2.42.

Oh, you have no buyers and want to know how are you going to get 6 buyers every month. Utilize the same formula you used to get a listing.  If you have to talk with 15 people before you get one buyer you will need to talk with how many people? 15×6=90 people per month or 90/4.33=20.78 people per week – round-up to 21 then divide 21/7=3 people per day.  So there you have it.  You will need to talk to 3 people every day about selling their home and another 3 people every day about buying a home to get your listings and buyers; and you will need to show each buyer an average of 3 homes per day.

Now you have a plan of action to reach that number of $100,000.00 this year – so get talking!

If you want to lose weight, run a marathon or anything else – just apply the above formula and break down your goal into bite-size pieces.  It makes achieving your goal a lot easier to swallow.

SO MUCH TO DO – SO LITTLE TIME

SO MUCH TO DO – SO LITTLE TIME

“If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?” – John Wooden

Time is the only thing that everyone has the same of – whether you are rich or poor, famous or ordinary, we all have the same amount of time to accomplish what we want to do on any given day.

This past weekend I think I may have bit off more than I wanted.  I decided to build a website to showcase all the short sales I have for sale and it pretty much took up all of my weekend.  So, I never got to post what I wanted to talk about yesterday.

Briefly, yesterday was the Epiphany – the day when the wise men – Magi – went to see the Christ child. These three men traveled a great distance just to see the newborn king and bring him gifts.  King Herod was jealous and afraid this newborn king would be greater than him, so he asked the wise men to come to his palace after they saw the Christ child, to tell him where he was so he could also pay homage to this newborn king.

An angel appeared to the Magi in a dream and told them of King Herod’s plan, and so instead of  returning the way they came – via where King Herod resided  – the Magi took a different way home.  In essence they had a “Plan B”.

Do you have a “Plan B”?  In today’s world and economy, it is very important to have a “Plan B” to keep you afloat.  If you don’t have one, I suggest you begin giving it a lot of thought. I know I am!

By the way, please stop by my new “ShortSaleAlachua.com” web site and take a look at the “Pre-Approved” short sales I have on the market. This is the website I built this weekend that took up all of my time.  Just click on the link below to view the site.  Thanks

https://sites.google.com/site/shortsalealachuacom/home

5 EVENTS THAT ROCKED HOUSING IN 2011

5 EVENTS THAT ROCKED HOUSING IN 2011

“A bank is a place that will lend you money if you can prove that you don’t need it.” –  Bob Hope

Re-printed from Trulia
January 3, 2012|Tools & Trends|No Comments
Jed Kolko, Trulia’s Chief Economist

5 events that rocked housing  in 2011; by Jed Kolko

Government, lending changes, and forces of nature all shook the housing market in 2011. They had both an immediate impact and slow-burning effects. They set the stage for a bumpy 2012 with more foreclosures, political battles and local market risks – which will affect the industry and how agents do business.

1) Robo-Signing Reverberations

The “robo-signing” scandal – where banks were accused of approving foreclosures with incomplete or incorrect documentation – exploded in October 2010, but where are we now? Banks want a settlement in order to avoid costly, drawn-out lawsuits. One is shaping up that could reduce loan balances or interest rates for current homeowners, give payments to people who lost their homes and establish new mortgage servicing standards for the future.

Even if you think there’s money coming to you because you lost your home, don’t start spending against your settlement windfall just yet. One estimate from the Wall Street Journal is for a settlement of $25 billion if all states participate. Another report from TIME says that will translate into $1,500-$2,000 for households who were mistreated in the foreclosure process. A couple thousand dollars will give people some breathing room, but it won’t change anyone’s financial lives. And, be patient: it could be months before a deal is reached, an administrator is in place and the details are finalized.

Until that’s all figured out, here’s the immediate drama: who’s in and who’s out? Some states might hold out for a better deal or decide to sue these mortgage servicers directly, as Massachusetts has. California was the first and most vocal state to back out, and New York, Delaware, and Nevada have spoken out, too.

What Really Mattered: The threat of robo-signing lawsuits made banks gun-shy about pursuing foreclosures in 2011, which left many homes stuck in the foreclosure process. But once a settlement is reached, we’ll see a rush of foreclosures in 2012.

What It Means for Agents: More foreclosures will hurt prices and consumer confidence. Short sales could be harder to get approved if the foreclosure process gets easier.

2) The Debt Ceiling and the Budget Deficit

The federal government is running a deficit — it is spending more than it collects in taxes and other revenue – so it borrows to cover the gap by issuing debt. When there’s a deficit, we add to the pile of debt. To shrink this pile, the government needs to collect more than it spends (or, if you prefer, spend less than it collects) and use the surplus to reduce the debt.

In August, the government played a game of chicken over whether to raise the debt ceiling – which is really just a formality acknowledging that the deficit requires issuing debt to keep the government going. However, the right way to deal with the debt is to reduce the deficit – not by fighting over the debt ceiling.

Long before the debt ceiling debate and Standard & Poor’s federal credit-rating downgrade, we all knew that the federal budget was in bad shape. The debt ceiling debate rattled the markets and consumer confidence temporarily but interest rates stayed low. The important effect was that Congress created a bipartisan supercommittee to tackle the deficit – but it couldn’t reach agreement by its November deadline.

What Really Mattered: The deficit-reduction supercommittee teased us with some policy proposals that will surely rear their heads again. One idea that both Republicans and Democrats didn’t totally disagree about was reducing the mortgage interest and other tax deductions. If and when that happens, high-income homeowners with mortgages would pay a lot more in taxes.

What It Means for Agents: Scaling back the mortgage interest deduction would lower the offers buyers – especially high-income buyers – will make on homes. And some buyers will drop out of the market if the deduction, which favors homeownership, shrinks or vanishes.

3) The Expansion of HARP

In October, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) said seriously underwater homeowners will be able to refinance through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). Originally, refinancing under HARP required a loan-to-value of less than 125% — that is, you couldn’t be more than 25% underwater – but that rule goes away for fixed-rate mortgages. But there’s a catch! Loans must be guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, and – more importantly – borrowers must be current on their payments and must not have missed a payment in the last 6 months.

What Really Mattered: Some seriously underwater borrowers who fell behind on their payments in hopes of negotiating a loan modification are now kicking themselves because those missed payments make them ineligible to refinance. But those who can and do refinance will have lower monthly payments and extra money to spend — which will help stimulate the economy.

What It Means for Agents: Even if easier refinancing may not affect the home-purchase market directly, it will stimulate the economy a bit, which will raise housing demand and give buyers more confidence.

4) Natural Disasters Cause Insurance Disaster?

In 2011, several tornadoes, floodings and a hurricane temporarily halted what little construction there was to begin with, but this was just a short-term slowdown. The bigger long-term effect was the near-collapse of the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Still struggling financially under debt amassed after Hurricane Katrina, the NFIP’s insurance premiums don’t fully cover insurance claims when disaster strikes. August’s Hurricane Irene and its flood damage returned this problem to center-stage.

What Really Mattered: In flood-prone areas, you can’t get a mortgage if you don’t have flood insurance. Without NFIP, housing markets in these areas would skid to a stop. Could the program actually expire? It could, but as part of last week’s payroll tax agreement, the program got a last-minute extension until May 2012. No doubt, the political fight over this program’s long-term future will continue in into next year.

What It Means for Agents: Those working in flood-prone areas should be aware of private-sector flood insurance options for buyers in case the federal program lapses after May. And agents in these areas should follow the debate over NFIP on websites and blogs that cover the insurance industry.

5) Lowering the Conforming Loan Limit

Starting in October, the government lowered the upper limit for loans backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac or insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) from $729,750 to $625,500. Why? Government agencies now back or insure most loans, but it’s time to make the housing market less dependent on the feds. Lowering loan limits is one step in that direction; however, the real estate industry has urged the government to push the loan limits back up. And you know what? They scored a half-win in November, raising the loan limit back up for FHA loans but not for Fannie and Freddie.

What Really Mattered: Mortgage lenders are willing to charge lower rates for loans that are backed by Fannie or Freddie; with a lower conforming loan limit, a small number of loans that used to qualify for federal backing no longer do. As a result, homes that are now on the wrong side of the conforming loan limit will see fewer potential buyers and lower sales prices. This will matter more in California, New York, and other high-cost areas.

What It Means for Agents: Agents need to know the local loan limits, which may be different for FHA insurance and Fannie/Freddie backing. Homes for which loans will be above the new limits might see less buyer interest and price reductions.

A MODERN DAY FABLE

“They (corporations) cannot commit treason, nor be outlawed, nor excommunicated, for they have no souls.” –  Sir Edward Coke

This modern-day fable explains how large corporations and big government actually work.

DON’T WAIT UNTIL IT’S TOO LATE!

“For most folks, no news is good news; for the press, good news is not news.”  – Gloria Borger

You hear the bad news everywhere you turn. It’s on the television, the Internet, the radio and in print headlines. A lot of negative coverage has been devoted to today’s housing market.  What you don’t hear is the good news about the real estate market and the many reasons why the current real estate market may be beneficial to you.

Bad news sells newspapers and gets high television ratings; therefore, the media has no reason to report the upside of today’s real estate market to the average American. This is where I come in. For example, did you know that approximately 30 percent of homeowners own their home free and clear?

The current market also affords some great opportunities for those looking to purchase a home. First-time homeowners, move-up buyers and investors can all benefit from low home prices, and historically low-interest rates, making now a great time to lock in a long-term mortgage. Also, the large selection of homes and low sales prices make it a great buyer’s market. And did you know that if you buy in a rural area –Alachua, High Springs and Newberry qualify as rural areas –  you may qualify for a USDA loan, which is a 100% loan – a “no money down” loan.

Ultimately, though, these favorable conditions will go away. As inflation rises, so do interest rates. If you are looking to become a homeowner, you need to strike while the iron is hot!

TIPS FOR STAYING SAFE THIS WINTER

“We must all suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of    regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons.”                         – Jim Rohn

Residential fires take their toll every day, every year, in lost lives and destroyed property. The fact is that many conditions that cause house fires can be avoided or prevented by homeowners. Taking the time for some simple precautions, preventive inspections, and concrete planning can help prevent fire in the home — and can even save your life should disaster strike.

  • All electrical devices including lamps, appliances, and electronics should be checked for frayed cords, loose or broken plugs, and exposed wiring. Never run electrical wires under carpet or rugs as this creates a fire hazard.
  • Wood-burning fireplaces should be cleaned by a professional chimney sweep each year to prevent a dangerous buildup of creosote, which can cause a flash fire in the chimney. Cracks in masonry chimneys should be repaired, and spark arresters inspected to ensure they are in good condition and free of debris.
  • When using space heaters, keep them away from beds and bedding, curtains, papers — anything flammable. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use. Space heaters should not be left unattended or where a child or pet could knock them over.
  • Use smoke detectors with fresh batteries unless they are hard-wired to your home’s electrical system. Smoke detectors should be installed high on walls or on ceilings on every level of the home and inside each bedroom. Statistics show that nearly 60% of home fire fatalities occur in homes without working smoke alarms. Many municipalities now require the use of working smoke detectors in both single and multi-family residences.
  • Children should not have access to or be allowed to play with matches, lighters, or candles. Flammable materials such as gasoline or kerosene should be stored outside the house.
  • Kitchen fires know no season. Grease spills, items left unattended on the stove or in the oven, and food left in toasters or toaster ovens can catch fire quickly. Don’t wear loose-fitting clothing, especially with long sleeves, around the stove. Handles of pots and pans should be turned away from the front of the stove to prevent accidental contact. Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher within easy reach.
  • Have an escape plan. This is one of the most important measures you can take to prevent death in a fire. Your local fire department can provide detailed recommendations on escape planning and preparedness. In addition, all family members should know how to dial 911 in case of a fire or other emergency.
  • Live Christmas trees should be kept in a water-filled stand and checked daily for dehydration. Needles should not easily break off a freshly cut tree. Brown needles or lots of fallen needles indicate a dangerously dried-out tree, which should be discarded immediately. Always use non flammable decorations in the home, and never use lights on a dried-out tree.
  • Candles should be placed in stable holders and placed away from curtains, drafts, pets, and children. Never leave candles unattended, even for a short time.
  • Christmas or other holiday lights should be checked for fraying or broken wires and plugs. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines when joining two or more strands together, as a fire hazard could result from overload. Enjoy your indoor holiday lighting only while someone is home, and turn them off before going to bed at night.

Your local Pillar To Post office wishes you and your clients a happy and safe holiday season.

A big thank you to Karl for sending this article my way.

Karl Spitzer
karl.spitzer@pillartopost.com
www.pillartopost.com
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