When showing houses, watch where you’re stepping

Real Estate photographers come across some interesting subjects and situations in the course of their work but this one is at the top of my list. An inter – species friendship that’s truly unique…


And when you’re showing houses, please watch where you’re stepping. The gal on the right would really appreciate that.

Rain City Guide Eastside MeetUp

We’re planning a Rain City Guide “Meet Up” at Crossroads in Bellevue on February 4th at 6:30 p.m. 

I know Rhonda, Jillayne and I will be there.  Possibly Robbie and/or Galen, and others from RCG.

Pretty informal, as most “MeetUps” are.  No pre-planned “agenda” unless someone wants to submit a few topics they would like covered.

I picked Crossroads vs. “a pub”, as I don’t like to encourage drinking and driving.  It will be in the food court area, so people coming from work can grab a bite to eat. 

Hope you can make it, and we will post a reminder the day before or day of “the event”.  Anyone from RCG who is planning to attend should send me an email.  It would be nice if readers could RSVP in the comments here, so I could “reserve” tables as needed, but RSVP is not required.

We’ve never done one of these before (or I haven’t) so if anyone has any suggestions based on their previous experience at “MeetUps”, advices would be much appreciated.

You like Turkey and Christmas more than real estate

Seriously. Real estate agents have known this forever: people aren’t very interested in buying or selling a home during the holidays. Do you really want to put in an offer and then manage it from your in-laws house in Florida?

Search volumes for Real Estate, Christmas Day, and Thanksgiving Day. Christmas and Thanksgiving alone (without “day”) totally overwhelm the chart for real estate:

Real Estate agents work whenever you aren’t; evenings, weekends, holidays, but many take December off. Except the ones who sell homes on Christmas Day (it’s a holiday – that means a chance for the busiest of professionals to fly in and close). See you in January!

Happy Birthday to…

It’s Jillayne’s birthday!  I was just checking out my Facebook profile and noticed that one of our very own is celebrating a birthday today.  I have known Jillayne for more years than we probably care to admit!   We once worked together for a large title insurance company…in our youts, as Vinnie would say.   If my memory serves, she was a title rep for Snohomish County and I was for King County.

Jillayne, I hope you have a wonderful birthday and many more to come.   As it is your special day, I won’t super-impose your head onto anything.  🙂   All my best to you!

Sunday Fun: Self-Importance Test…

I saw the great results that Matt ended up with in taking the Technosailor Self Importance Test, and had to give it a try… Turns out I’m most like Chris Pirillo… 🙂

The result is fascinating in that it is somewhat like reading a horoscope…

You are most like Chris Pirillo. You dominate your brand and do quite well in marketing it. However, you go out of the way to place the focus on other people as much as possible as a decision on power and authority. You may have many followers, readers or fans but you rarely let this distract you from your mission and focus.


2000 Bloggers

I saw myself in a “puzzle” of faces here and there around the internet. Apparently you can add your blog, but I didn’t put mine there, so someone must have “entered me”.

Not sure where it originated. I’m still tracking it back.

It is an amazing display of blogs! and the photos are interactive so you just click on a face and you get to that person’s blog. Very cool.

If I can find the original source I’ll come back and edit this post. I recognize a few of the faces. It doesn’t look like 2000, but I guess it grows and grows until it reaches 2,000.

If anyone has any info on where this came from, and how my face got there :), please let us know.

http://www.trade-pals.com/2000-bloggers.asp this is the name on the link. I’ll go see what “trade-pals” is. Looks like it could be something like MyBlogLog.

Looks like it is Tino Buntic, just a whacky dude 🙂

Time for some sleep!

At around 8pm, I woke up from a late afternoon nap to see that Ardell still had over 30 posts to write and I got a worried… So I took a Newcastle out of the fridge and started writing. I figured that should it become necessary, I could pass along a few extra posts to Ardell… (Greg’s not the only one with a competitive streak!) But she obviously didn’t need my help as she has just made it to 100 on her own! Awesome stuff!!!

Congrats to both Greg and Ardell… You’re both amazing.

However, because I hate to see things go to waste, I’ll go ahead publish the mini-blog posts I was going to pass along to Ardell. My intention was only to write a few “filler” posts, but…

1) I believe Greg when he says he could hit 135 in one day… The man in an animal!

2) Speaking of jobs! Give this man the full-time job as the Open House blogger… With articles like this fun one on an whimsical (artist) house and timely articles like this one on the number of NWMLS price reductions. Steve has come a long way in a few weeks since he asked me how to get some traction to his blog.

3) I steal a lot of “Rain City” traffic, so here’s my chance to give back:

  1. Rain City Video (local video chain)
  2. Rain City Rocks (rocks and minerals)
  3. Rain City Grill (yum)
  4. Rain City Dogs (dog walking)
  5. Rain City Hearse Club (car)
  6. Rain City Choppers (bikes)
  7. Rain City Shwillers (125% punk by volume)
  8. Rain City Yoga (hot!)
  9. Rain City Story (a personal blog)
  10. Rain City Studies (website design)

4) Greg points out this post on the Trulia Blog… Considering all the work that Sami and Pete have done to bridge the gap with the broker community, I’m surprised they let that post slip through…

5) In search of a snippet

6) Kris turns a strange day into a great 12-step program for blogging… However, note that most 12-step programs try to ween you of addictions while Kris is trying to give you one. You’ve been warned.

7) Review of the Bloodhound Blog… Nobody, and I mean nobody, feels more comfortable calling real estate B.S. when and where he sees it. With a fluent style, a quick wit, and a massive quantity of writing under his belt, the man has become addicting.

8) How to discuss Marlow’s recent post about Trulia’s expansion without sounding self-serving??? I put together a Excel spreadsheet that examines not only how many listings each service has, but also how many “accurate” listings each service has for one zip-code (98117) in Seattle. The results highlight a bunch of interesting things like (1) Redfin’s zip-code search is broken (i.e. a search on 98117 returns results for other zip codes like 98203 and does not return all the homes that Redfin has with a zip-code of 98117), (2) Realtor.com is missing more than a few Windermere listings (I was surprised when Marlow mentioned this, but the results pan out), and (3) Trulia has a long way to go before they are comprehensive. If someone wanted to take this data and add one more zip code in some other part of the country, I’d love to post the results. Maybe a Bay Area agent can take this on since all the sites in question have operations there!

9) One of the things I most admire about Ardell is that she focuses on the service (and then delivers a rebate). While it Bill’s approach makes for great blog posts, focusing on the “discount” doesn’t work for me.

10) I still haven’t made sense out of what it means to be part of a “Christian Real Estate Network”, but the guy does some great real estate blog posts… I like his latest on ways to learn about your competitor’s website is another doozy… although he does miss out on the most obvious trick, which is to use technorati to see who else is linking to them!

11) Interesting to see the competitiveness of the rental market

12) I’m not sure who, but someone once said… “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That’s the theme for these blog posts!

13) However, I must give credit to Jim for his excellent post on “why blog?”

14) Jay makes a bunch of valid points when he says it is time to “raising the bar” on becoming a real estate agent… Since stricter requirements would serve to keep out additional competition, I’m assuming that most successful agents would agree.

15) Tom echos this point, andapplauds the Governator’s move to require more education for California agents

16) Merv continues to deliver with his price trend analysis… If you’re looking for good ways to display real estate data start with Merv!

17) Then go check out Mike’s Altos Research blog because he makes price trend analysis easy…

18) While just about anything is possible, tracking my net worth based on my home’s zestimate and MyYahoo stock tracking performance is going to far for me… and then making a button for the whole wide world to see? No thanks!

[photopress:realty_blogging_book.jpg,full,alignright]19) The real estate blog marketing book is available for pre-purchase on amazon… I spoke to these guys while they were writing the book and will be curious to read it!

20) Thinking of amazon wish lists… This four bedroom home in Malibu is currently on the market

21) They are easy enough to find, but Hanan alerted me to this ironic clip of Bush

22) “Seller will pay 6 months of mortgage payments“… (I’m all for good incentives, but is this loan fraud?)

23) The Inman Blog follows up on Trulia’s post where they asked a few real estate professionals to predict the August numbers… It seems no one really knows what’s going on, and if they do, they sure aren’t letting you know in a blog post! 😉

24) As usual, if you want the real scoop on the numbers, turn to Jonathan.

25) The group at Inman also wonder if the people over at Freddie Mac have their pulse on the Latino culture… I’m not holding my breath.

26) Jonathan is also wondering where are all the foreclosures… interesting stuff. I think there are a lot of bubble bloggers that are ampted up and ready to pounce should these trends ever change. I wonder how long they can keep up their intensity before their bubbles deflate… 🙂

27) Speaking of numbers… Peter over at the Business Week blog does an excellent job explaining one example where housing numbers have been so obviously manipulated

28) I always like reading a blog posts from Sandy, but I just wish that she kept her posts short-and-sweet as oppose to long-and-infrequent.

29) Joel points out an unorthodox use of Zillow’s data… I haven’t looked through their API documentation, but do they insist that you add their name/logo when you use their data? How about refelcting them in a good light? Interesting stuff.

30) Now that they clog up our inboxes, real estate leads are a legitimate business [link removed]… On any given day, I literally get 100s of spam and my guess is that over 3/4 or them are real estate related. Thank you google for putting together such a good spam filter. I wouldn’t be able to handle the email I get to my blog email account with the filters on Outlook… I think I would just give up on email!

31) Elizabeth Razzi says that we should get to know the neighborhood before we buy a place. Not exactly brilliance, but it serves as a good reminder that there really are some intangibles that require more than an aerial view of a property!

32) Cherokee is looking for information on the Snoqualmie area… Pak gave one answer, but I’m sure there are others who could help! 🙂

33) The Seattlest gives hogwash a rave review as a fun for the whole family.

Hogwash – An Improvised Tall Tale For Small Children
Runs Saturdays at 2 p.m. until October 28, 2006
Historic University Theater, 5510 University Way NE (University District)
$10, Reservations – 206-297-1767

34) I like Rory’s approach: “I assert that a Real Estate Agent’s expertise and professionalism should be visible in their service and knowledge of the housing market and inventory. Their expertise should never be based on a carrot and stick ploy to drip feed clients MLS information.

35) Do you get comfort knowing that the home of the NAR president is lingering on the market? 🙂

36) If you’re curious, I’m going by the code name “tyr” in the Inkling Market set up by Keven Boer. At this point, I’m down… It seems more and more people are voting for Greg… Will a last minute spurt of posts from me help out???

37) The title may be a mouthful, Creative agreement may enable advantageous use of otherwise unavailable homesite, but Marlow points out a great example of the benefits of getting creative!

38) Welcome to the neighborhood

39) When Shaquille O’Neal makes a $1B real estate investment, that’s a great story!

40) Claudia lets us know about the renevotations that hurt!

41) David organizes another fascinating (and colorful) post on the connection between home life and healthy aging

Seattle Beaches Offer Unique Views

Today’s theme? Fun with real estate!

  1. Marlow provides a list of entertaining stories about hijacks (along with some good-natured teasing about the high PubSub ranking or her PI blog!)…
  2. Glenn thinks that we should change the title of Seattle Eric’s post because we’re not being fair. “The original post should be corrected out of fairness to make it clear that we use the same feed as every other Internet site…” Considering his praying mantis reference (and his defense of the reference), his comment makes today’s list because it gave me the best laugh of the day.
  3. Realtor.com, Jan 1997: “If you’re ready to find a home, browse through more than 517,000 homes presented by 112 participating REALTOR® Multiple Listing Services in 41 States.” (Lots more early corporate websites…)
  4. I had a blast at MindCamp2.0 and am thinking of flying up for 3.0.
  5. Is there room for two dog-related real estate blogs?
  6. Glenn Roberts points us to a great story about the Yes Men. These guys convinced conference organizers that they were legitimate HUD officials who wanted to make an announcement about the future of New Orleans’ public housing. Following a speech by Gov. Kathleen Blanco and Mayor Ray Nagin, the HUD official announced a complete reversal of policy. Ali G would be proud.
  7. Promoting a real estate blog is tough stuff. Luckily Hanan is constantly throwing ideas our way… (includes an informative link on why no one is reading your blog!)
  8. Seattle beaches make the news! It’s not news, it’s fark!
  9. A great sense of humor make Maureen’s blog a lot of fun to read… (Her subtitle being a great example: “This is not the best blog in Columbus Ohio! This is a blog about what is best in Columbus…”). Her latest article letting us know that Columbus, Ohio is rainier than Seattle is much appreciated!
  10. Made me think of of the insufferable bastard: