Rain City Radio with Justin of the Capitol Hill Blog at 4pm!

Capitol Hill Blog ScreenshotAs I mentioned last week, this next episode of Rain City Radio will feature Justin of the Capitol HIll Blog!  So, if you want to learn about the ins-and-outs of this great neighborhood in Seattle, then check in with us at 4pm today (July 8th).

And if you want to call in to ask your own questions of our guest, then you can follow the simple instuctions on this page… and if all you want to do is stream the conversation live, then a few minutes before the show, you should see that option on the talkshoe widget on our sidepanel!

One of the things I’m most excited to learn about is the new format that their using for this community site.   It’s got all kinds of ways for people to interact on a very local level and I’ll be curious to get Justin’s feedback on how this is working.


The recorded conversation is now live and you can listen to it using the player on the sidepanel!    Justin was a most gracious guest and shared lots of great insights about Capitol Hill with us… including the best place to get waffles!  The new platform their running at Capitol Hill blog is extremely interesting and has spurred a lot of ideas for ways I might be able to add similar features to RCG…

Rain City Radio: A West Seattle Story

I really enjoyed today’s conversation with Tracy Records of the West Seattle Blog.  Tracy shared a ton of great stories with us and I learned a ton…

Click here to listen to the entire interview!

And below are some links to some of the things we discussed:

We covered a lot of great topics in the interview including her perspective on the elements of the media that has fundamentally changed.  As someone with 25 years experience in the traditional media space AND a successful local blogger, her perspective was fascinating!

Click here to listen to the entire interview!

*Note: If you’re wondering why this post looks different then when it was originally published, I didn’t like the outline that I originally provided, so I changed it around a bunch.

A while back I spelled Seatttle with…

three “t’s” on the sidepanel and was surprised just how much traffic it brought. Because I was more concerned with being professional than traffic, I fixed the type, but Mary just reminded me of the effectiveness of the error, so I thought I’d try it out again! 🙂

And if you are looking for Seattle real estate information, dont’ be discouraged if you landed on this page! 😉 We’ve got tons of great stuff on this site!

To highlight just a few: Ardell gives local condition stats ever Sunday, Rhonda provides mortgage rate updates every Friday, and I wrote a post about moving to Seatttle a while back that is loaded with questions, answers, insights, dangers, etc. from people. (There are almost 500 comments to date!)

Free Speech? Miami Realtor/Blogger sued by developer for $25Million

It was reported by the Miami Herald that a local Realtor blogger is being sued by a developer who is not pleased that the blogger, Lucas Lachuga, remarked that the development was “doomed” on a January 10th post.

”Like any other blog out there, it’s a collection of my unbiased opinions and thoughts,” he said. “I have buyers all over the world who go to my blog. They know I’m not going to sugarcoat the market.”

Realtor Lucas Lachuga’s Blog is called Miami Condo Investments.

This is the kind of case attorneys probably would watch very closely.

Blog Wars: It's everywhere.

The last month has been educational for me in a lot of ways about our industry and confirmed a lot of my thoughts, both good and bad. There is a lot of passion out there in the blogosphere and out in the work place. The one nugget I always come away with is that the real estate industry is full of very independent people who are fierce in the way they do business and in the manner in which they convey their positions on issues. Both in the work place and blogging, some are professional, others make fools of themselves, intended or not.

One common denominator I see is that people genuinely want to improve our industry, its function and image. The problem is, how can that happen with such fragmented independent practitioners that all play a part in this industry? There are so many moving parts with industry specific (lending, title, escrow, Realtors, consumers) internal self-serving issues. Perhaps this fragmentation of independent real estate practitioners is a core reason why the industry and associated moving parts has suffered from image and credibility problems for so long. Just take a recent look at all the folks that were operating under the radar over the past two or three years with criminal records.

Recently, I don’t know how many times on local or national blogs and forums, I’ve seen the quote from agents and loan officers, “sure be glad to see (insert any practitioner here) get out of the business,” or “I’ll be happy if there are less (insert practitioner) here as this market shifts,” and so on. Again, the problem is, everyone is saying it. It’s like each team praying to God…..”and help us beat the other team.”

Passion and Blog Wars extend far outside our real estate industry. That’s what is so interesting to me as a small business owner involved in the real estate industry and blogging. I know this is foreign for many of my friends and colleagues in the real estate business, but here goes anyway: The world does not revolve around real estate. The Blog Wars extend into every crack and corner of our society: soccer mom’s, politics, economics, Church, professional sports and the “Holy Land of Blogging” known as the technology and software industry.

I have no intention of turning this into…

a blog about southern California real estate, but I do have a non-fire related update from Southern California.

Brad Inman and I are going to be speaking at Beverly Hills REALTOR Association’s Head of High Office Tea this Thursday afternoon. From everything I can gather, it is going to be a pretty posh set-up at the Peninsula Hotel. The plan is for Brad to speak about the status of the industry for about an hour, myself to speak for about an hour and tea and conversation making up the last hour.


Tickets are $40 and just about sold out.

Also, I shouldn’t admit this, but I honestly have not given much thought about what I’m going to say just yet… Conveniently, back in August I did a presentation on using blogs to build up an online brand for the KW Mega Technology Camp that came off well (and took about 45 minutes including questions from others who were on stage). I think I’ll adjust that presentation a bit but go with that general outline. If anyone who was at that presentation wants to give me feedback, I’d love to hear it! 🙂

Does the NAR & the Big Brokers really want to fight The Blogosphere?

There have been a lot of discussions lately regarding Blogging, both it’s merits and potential for fallout on many levels. The problem with trying to keep Blogging under wraps: If you do, you have the potential for political backlash, both from the agents that build the brand of the broker (Re/Max, Windermere, Coldwell Banker, etc. ) and the Blogosphere itself, an enormous Goliath. Is it a battle anyone really wants to have?

Over at the Seattle PI Real Estate Professionals Blog, agent Sandy Kaduce remarked, “they will take away my blog from me when they pry it from my dead cold hands.” And, our friends howling down in the Sun in Phoenix take on the National Assn. of Realtors possible policy on curbing blogging for its membership.

But, what if an agent’s very own client blogs about their very own listing for sale and soliciting advice from the general public? For example, this case at Seattle Bubble from blogger “Econ101”. (a little more than halfway down in the comment fields)

I’m not certain anyone understands the possible repercussions of curbing blogging.

In good company…

Over the past two years, the team over at Inman has done a particularly good job reaching out to the real estate blogging community (RE.net for short), and their latest article listing the top 25 most influential real estate bloggers was not only a great outreach tool, but particularly flattering of the Rain City Guide team.

If I had to hazard a guess as to why RCG was so well represented, two ideas come to mind… One is the good fortune we’ve had to bring on a group of engaging (and downright fun!) contributors and two, we’ve had awesome source material with interesting start-ups and a great local blogging community that goes beyond RCG contributors. Inman recognized as much by not only including Ardell and myself in the list, but also including a slew of Seattle bloggers including Marlow Harris, John Cook, David Gibbons and Glenn Kelman. All great people who have engaged and improved the RCG community over the past two and half years!

Don’t miss:

7 Ways to Make an Impact

Getting people to visit your website and read your blog post is interesting, but the most successful bloggers I see seem to get a kick out of having an impact on the industry. With that in mind, I came up with seven ways to make an impact by blogging:

1. Be more consumer-focused: No one loves an argument about buyer agency more than Ardell DellaLoggia (Here’s her first post on RCG a year-and-half ago to give you some perspective). While she may appear to loose an argument with real estate insiders from time-to-time, she always comes out ahead with consumer by arguing for what she consistently believes is their best interest.

2. Be more principled: Whether it be refusing to accept Brad Inman’s gifts or going out of his way to disclose meager earnings from his site, Greg Swann insists on taking the high ground. Add a prolific personality and the ability to say the right words at the right time, and Greg has clearly earned his reputation as a leader in the RE.net.

3. Be more consistent: Whether your interest is real estate blogs or the architecture of doors; Whether you are Beattles’ person or a Dylan person; Whether you like Odd & Crazy or Odd & Ends, Hanan Levin has been searching out the edges of the internet to return with blogging gold. Despite threats to quit and/or move to New Zealand, he continues to delight with multiple updates every day.

4. Be more fun: Is there a business plan behind traveling the country and playing with photoshop? Who cares. The Sellsius boys have shown us all how to make a huge impact by simply having more fun that the rest of us!

5. Be more credible: Whether taking on short sales, professional status, or subprime lending, Jillayne Schlicke always finds a way to offer the voice of reason by providing an interesting perspective filled with interesting solutions

6. Be more unexpected: With stories ranging from the real estate happenings of Sanjaya, little towns in Austria with unusual names, and hard-hitting coverage of Redfin, one can never know what you’ll get when you land on a post by Marlow Harris… except that it will be interesting and probably provocative.

7. Be more up-to-date: No one else follows the online real estate industry better than Joel Burslem of the Future of Real Estate Marketing. Whether he is analyzing the new guys like Terabitz or the old guys like Zillow, he never misses and interesting story and consistently does a top-notch job putting developments in perspective.


If you’ve made it this far, then I might as well tell you the genesis of this article…

After my presentation a few weeks ago in Austin, TX, the folks at KW asked if I’d like to submit an article on blogging for the next issue of the KW newsletter. Rather than succumb to the usual “5 reasons you should blog” type article, I thought I’d try to be a bit more interesting and profile some of the bloggers that have made the largest impact on me.

I still haven’t figured out how I’m going to deal with the links (which obviously don’t translate well to a written article). I think I’ll just add one link for each individual back to their blog, and include some text that says the article is best viewed “blog” format on Rain City Guide with a link back to this article. If someone has a better solution on how to deal with lots of links within a printed article, I’m definitely open to suggestions…

As always, I’d love to get your feedback. Should I re-phrase things? Should I include another blogger who has made a strong impact on you?

And, no surprise, I put off writing this article until almost the last minute (the article is due by the end of the month!), so if you have some suggestions, you’ll need to make them soon in order to get into print! 🙂