The Zebra Blog

September – The Gateway to Finishing the Year Strong

Today is July 20th so you might be wondering why I am talking about September. But September is just around the corner (doesn’t it seem like Memorial Day was just a few days ago?) and it is one of those make-it or break-it months in real estate. It can set you up for record-breaking success or it can set you up for a ho-hum fall.  It can be your springboard to the most robust quarter of the year for in terms of sales success.  It can also prove to be the start of another wasted part of the year where one week turns into twelve and before you know you are back on holiday mode.

Don’t let this September turn into January without making it the best quarter you have ever experienced. However, planning for a great September does not start on September 1st or the day after Labor Day…it starts right now. Read more »

Design Spotlight: Kris LaBrie

This week’s design spotlight features the brand of MASTERY agent Kris LaBrie, from Renton, Washington. Kris’ ideal brand image was light, refreshing, and timeless. When she took our design style analysis, her results were Bold and Understated in almost equal portions – an unusual combination! This contradiction in design style was actually an opportunity to make statement using strong but minimal elements. Kris selected a bold, modern shade of which we paired with understated pearl-tinted champagne tones. The gentle curve of her header and footer are unique and memorable, and emphasize her affable approachability. Read more »

Ask Denise: Easy Leads

Q: “Denise, I am a bit burned out but need some leads. What are some things that most agents aren’t doing?”

A: If you are looking for leads quickly, then you need to focus on marketing to people who are either ready to buy or sell. That might mean going after expired listings or FSBOs. I also like finding special niche opportunities in the market and then communicate via letter. Find the type of product that is selling quickly. Read more »

The Hidden Danger of Elbow Grease

Have you ever picked up a shovel or a paintbrush in the spirit of helping a seller get their home on the market? If so, I am talking to you.

Over the years I have been witness to many sad situations that could have been prevented if the real estate agent involved had thought twice before offering to do work for their sellers. I don’t believe that any real estate agent would ever do work again for their sellers if they had a chance to speak with some of the agents who have and who have been either sued or injured because of it. Read more »

Design Spotlight: Gary Nims

This week’s design spotlight features the brand of MASTERY agent Gary Nims, from Bellevue, Washington. Gary is building a family business with his wife Stacy and daughter Laura. Together, they wanted to create a memorable brand that would help their business grow. They chose a bold navy and maroon color palette and accented it with silvery-campaign bars. Their composite photo header invites the viewer into a bright and open living space, the same way the Nims team invites their clients into the process of buying or selling a home.

Read more »

Ask Denise: Personal Branding

Q: “Denise, I have been on the fence for a while about building a brand. My company supplies some materials and I get by with other materials from companies that offer postcard templates. Is having my own brand really all that different? Do people really pay attention? Is it worth the investment?”

A: Having your own brand is really all that different, yes people pay attention, and hands-down this investment will come back to you time and time again in spades. Read more »

The Summer Time Hues: The Different Colors of the Summer Real Estate Rainbow

Summer is here, and potential buyers and sellers are experiencing different levels of real estate urgency. Some are rushing to make that summer time purchase or sale while others are basking in the sun with no desire to even think about making a move because they are so busy enjoying the weather. Summer is a very interesting time for real estate agents because while some of them are super busy with hardly a break since early spring, others are twiddling their thumbs wondering when their clients will decide to make a move.

There are many different moods to the summer season in the real estate industry.  Just like colors of a rainbow every buyer or seller has their own idea of the perfect time to get into the market.  Have a look at the different color personalities and try to identify your potential clients in this list, it might help you understand them more. Read more »

Design Spotlight: Jack Malek

This week’s design spotlight features the brand of MASTERY agent Jack Malek of Seattle, Washington. Jack loves modern architecture, especially the avant-garde use of steel, glass, and concrete in dramatic curves. The structure of his brand mimics the curves in the photos of steel-and-glass construction. A smooth concrete texture keeps the header and footer light while dramatically contrasting with the dark charcoal background. Soft and cool blues, so characteristic of the northwest, provide colorful accents to his stark white text.

Read more »

Ask Denise: A Delicate Discussion

Q: “Denise, I have a delicate problem I need your help with. My brokerage has an office that is attached to mortgage lender’s office. Unfortunately, that lender and their company are getting a bad reputation for not getting transactions closed. What is worse is the communication between the lender  and bank and then with the client is just not where it should be. This is a delicate topic because our company is getting a reputation by being affiliated with this lender. I want to talk with my managing broker about this but am really not sure how this is going to go over. Help!” Read more »

The Market Seems Slow, Should I Be Worried?

I have had many inquiries lately about the state of the real estate market.  Many agents have asked me if they should be concerned about their local market slowing down.

But, as we all know, real estate is a local cyclical business that has its ebbs and flows.  We have been experiencing a very active market for the past number of years so any sign of a change in the pace of the market could turn on alarm bells for those agents who lived through the very difficult markets of 2007 through 2013.

I want to assure everyone that is reading this that you should NOT be worried about the market going back to what we experienced during those years.  Read more »

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