Breaking: Home Prices Hit 32-Week High

Good news: according to the National Home Price NSA Index, home prices have hit a 32-month high! Time to pop the bubbly, right? 

Maybe not. David Blitzer, the Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee, says that real estate professionals may need to curb their enthusiasm.

“New home construction is now close to a normal pace of about 1.2 million units annually,” he says. “Most housing rebounds following a recession only last for a year or so.”

Just like any other change in the market, you’re better off staying consistent rather than out-thinking yourself with (relatively) short-term market fluctuations.

Or, perhaps you can use this information as a motivation to push through the end of a tough month. It’s your choice. Like so many things in life, your results will be largely dependent on how you process the information you’re given.

Is this a negative or a positive? The call is yours.

Source: Inman.com

home prices on rise

Larson Educational Services

13040 Livingston Rd. #12

Naples, Florida 34105

239-344-7510

larsoned.com

larson-florida-insurance-school

 

Should real estate agents buy a drone?

 

Should real estate agents buy a drone?

Drones, also known as quadcopters, are becoming a staple in the real estate industry.

Not too long ago, getting high quality aerial photographs of your properties required helicopters, airplanes, and thousands of dollars in fees. Sure, you’d get a quality final product, but you wound up feeling like you paid to shoot a scene from Terminator.

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Let’s hope you didn’t spend any extra money on this guy (photo courtesy of Wikipedia).

Drones have made aerial photographs and videos accessible to even the smallest of real estate agents.

These remote-controlled flying devices may have a large initial cost and a learning curve, but you can save money over time the more you use it.

In other words, instead of pumping your photography budget into a helicopter or airplane service to get a small number of properties photographed/videoed, you can put that money toward buying a drone that allows you to get a larger number of properties photographed/videoed—even the lower priced listings.

Are real estate drones a short-lived gimmick?

It doesn’t seem so. As of June 2016, approximately 39 percent of drone permits went to real estate professionals: https://www.zillow.com/agent-resources/trends-and-data/tips-and-advice/drones-real-estate-photography/.

Look at it this way—drones are simply the latest technology that people are using to solve a problem: how to get aerial photos of real estate.

Before, the solution to that problem was expensive and complex. It just so happens that this is the newest solution.

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How can drones help with your real estate business?

Drones can help potential buyers get views of the entire property or land for sale.

If the property is near an amenity like a public pool or a golf course, you can use aerial footage to create a visual representation of the proximity to those features.

Or maybe the property is near a school for the kids or close to a gated community entrance—it’s all perfect for showing off on a drone.

As drones become more and more popular, sellers may expect aerial photographs as part of your standard service package.

Now, there may be reasons not to include aerial footage as well, such as undesirable features that would be in the shot, like a close-proximity freeway, for example.

“Do I really have to buy a drone?”

If the idea of purchasing and learning to fly a drone feels overwhelming for you, then you may want to outsource the job and only use the service for larger, more expensive properties. There are several drone photography service providers in southwest Florida that you can hire to provide this service.

Outsourcing aerial footage may be more expensive in the long-run, but as your business grows it may make more sense for you to spend a bit more money in order to save time.

Sidenote: take a look at some of the amazing real estate footage people are grabbing with drones. Video courtesy of Utah Aerial Imaging

(Don’t think that you have to make some fancy video like this to make aerial footage work—start with taking still images and work your way up to videos, even if they’re not as amazing as this one.)

Or perhaps you’re new to real estate and don’t want to put in the initial investment for a quadcopter along with your other start-up costs. That makes sense.

In that case, you may want to wait until you get more clients and start selling more expensive properties before you invest in a drone.

If at that time you feel the need to get more aerial photographs, then go for it. There are lots of tips and tutorials online to help anyone learn to fly.

Either way, aerial footage is cheaper and more accessible than ever for real estate agents, and that’s a good thing for everyone, including your clients.

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Larson Educational Services

13040 Livingston Rd. #12

Naples, Florida 34105

239-344-7510

LarsonEd.com

Is loyalty dead?

Is loyalty dead?

The Oakla–sorry–the LAS VEGAS Raiders, who have called Oakland home since their last relocation in 1995, are ditching one of the most fervent fan bases in the NFL and moving to the Sin City.

Some are calling the move soulless on the team’s part–a slap in the face of Raider Nation.

That may be true.

However, we at LarsonEd want to assure you, our fans, that we won’t be skipping town on you. We wouldn’t be the company we are if it weren’t for our students, so we want to say thank you for coming to us for your real estate and insurance educational needs.

We promise to continue reciprocating that loyalty right back to you.

Photo courtesy of Raiders Twitter.

Sign up for insurance and real estate classes in Naples, Fort Myers, Sarasota, and online: https://www.larsoned.com/

Larson raiders

Photo courtesy of Raiders Twitter

#TBT to King Ricky the Merciful!

This #TBT goes back to 1951, during the reign of King Ricky the Merciful.

Elk River, Minnesota–the Larson family’s home town–was holding a contest to crown the king or queen baby of the area.

All over town, the local merchants posted pictures of babies in their shop windows–so many babies you would’ve there was a town-wide missing baby epidemic.

Once they’d surveyed the pictures, people then stuffed the ballot boxes inside the shops to vote for the best baby.

Of course Ricky Larson, barely one year old, put his hat into the ring with this classic picture.

And who could resist that toothless smile? Those jean coveralls? He even had his hands out front in ready position, like he was about to go work on the family farm.

“It was a great photo,” Rick says now. “Really compelling.”

The town of Elk River apparently agreed, as Ricky Larson won the “Stuff the Ballot Box” contest. (“That was kind of an ass-kicking,” he says.)

He was awarded a little four-inch trophy (long since lost to the ages) that declared him King Ricky of Elk River.

So the next time you have Rick teaching your class, don’t forget to call him by his true name: King Ricky.
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About Larson Educational Services:

Utilizing 40 years of real estate training and professional education experience, Florida real estate school Larson Educational Services is the premier provider of Florida real estate licensing, exam preparation, post-licensing, CAM licensing, mortgage loan originator licensing, and continuing education in Southwest Florida. Classes are available in Fort Myers, Naples, Sarasota, and online.

Brad Larson

Larson Educational Services

13040 Livingston Road #12

Naples, Florida 34105

239-344-7510

LarsonEd.com/Insurance

info@larsoned.com

Are you creating value online?

creating value online.png

Sometimes, the best move is to stop producing and contemplate.

Real estate is a notoriously fast-paced industry that requires a hustler’s mindset.

Similarly, the internet is a fast-paced medium that creates the illusion that you must constantly produce content.

When you add these two factors together, you get a lot of white noise—people producing online content just for the sake of producing online content.

But how often do we stop to ask ourselves:

“Is my content adding value to anyone’s life?”

I’ll admit it: we’ve been guilty of producing white noise in the past. Look back in our archives and you’ll see “press releases” that were little more than thinly-veiled advertisements.

Or we’d post surface-level advice articles that did little more than repeat what already existed elsewhere online.

At one point or another, we’ve all produced spam-y online writing material.

Sure, there was a time when pumping out a keyword-heavy blog post every day would improve your search ranking.

Nowadays, this technique of jamming keywords into blog posts or YouTube videos in the hopes of boosting your SEO is no longer viable. 

Google won’t reward this kind of writing in the search results and potential readers will quickly move on to something more interesting online.

Cat video larsoned

Do you really think you can compete with 10 hours of cat fails!?

Content is King

Google is constantly trying to improve its search algorithm to provide the best content for its users. You can read more about one of its latest major updates here: Google Webmaster Blog* (see footnote for more info).

Marketing used to be focused on the products we sell. Now, marketing is all about the stories we tell.

An easy way to get started telling stories is to provide your prospects with insight into your business. People love the idea of having a behind-the-scenes glimpse into an industry.

Share part of your sales process or a personal success story from your business. Or write a blog post about the time you failed miserably and what you learned from it.

By telling these stories, you provide value to your sphere of influence.

Thought Leaders

You need to read more.

We all do. Reading is how we make sense of the chaos in the world—reading is how we get new ideas, whether professionally or personally.

Don’t know where to start?

I would begin by finding 5 to 10 SuperStar Agents that I admire and reading the content they’re producing online if I don’t already: their personal blog, their ActiveRain account, etc.

Don’t stop there—get in contact with them.

Find out what books they’re reading. 

Ask them what books have had the greatest influence on them. The answers to these questions will provide you with a ready-to-go reading list.

Because successful people, in all industries, are molded by the books they read.

Hiding in Infinity

It’s easy to think about dominating an entire state or region. You tell yourself you’ll be the best real estate agent in Florida. Or the best in the southeast. Or the best in the world!

But can you be the best real estate agent in your own neighborhood?

Seth Godin, the author of 18 bestsellers about marketing and leadership, calls this tendency to think big as opposed to thinking small “hiding in infinity.”

He says:

“Whenever possible, ask yourself… ‘what’s the smallest group of people I could make a difference for?’ Smallest feels risky. Because if you pick smallest and you fail, now you’ve really screwed up. We want to pick big because infinity is our friend. Infinity is safe. Infinity gives us a place to hide.

(For more on this, check out Godin’s book Purple Cow. This quote comes at the 12:20 mark of his podcast “How to Think Small to Go Big” with Tim Ferriss.)

So find your niche—whether it’s selling waterfront properties in Naples, Florida, or selling chocolate-covered frozen bananas (I’m just spit-balling here)—and become a thought leader for everyone who’s interested in your little sliver of the world.

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Larson Educational Services

13040 Livingston Rd. #12

Naples, Florida 34105

239-344-7510

LarsonEd.com


*Footnote: Anyone who’s interested in SEO should follow Google’s Webmaster Blog. For the longest time, I could never find a primary source for Google’s algorithm updates. Any website or article you read about Google’s updates are using this blog as their source material. Rather than rechecking this site every few weeks, I would suggest signing up for their email feed—they’re quite infrequent, so they won’t clutter your inbox. Just click on “Feed” on the right side of webmasters.googleblog.com then click on “Get Google Webmaster Central Blog delivered by email” as seen in the pictures below.

webmaster blog copy

A Secret From Our Archives–LarsonEd

We’re letting you in on a little bundle of secrets from the LarsonEd archives.

These are some of the logos we decided against when we first opened the school.

Because we’re a family business started by two sons and a father, we wanted a logo that reflected our familial roots.

So we asked for logos that emphasized the “son” in Larson.

None of them felt right (although I do kinda like the red one with the little palm tree covering the S). Then we came across our current logo with the swooshing S, subtly emphasizing the “son,” just as we wanted.

And that’s how we came to have our current logo.

larson logoslogo no background

About Larson Educational Services:

Utilizing 30 years of real estate training and professional education experience, Florida real estate school Larson Educational Services is the premier provider of Florida real estate licensing, exam preparation, post-licensing, CAM licensing, mortgage loan originator licensing, and continuing education in Southwest Florida. Classes are available in Fort Myers, Naples, Sarasota, and online.

Brad Larson

Larson Educational Services

13040 Livingston Road #12

Naples, Florida 34105

info@LarsonEd.com

239-344-7510

www.LarsonEd.com

Happy Valentine’s Day–LarsonEd

You LarsonEd, don’t you? We you right back 😉

Happy Valentine’s Day from your friendly neighborhood real estate school!

valentines day larsoned

For more information about our brand new insurance licensing courses, check out our website: https://www.larsoned.com/insurance/

About Larson Educational Services:

Utilizing 30 years of real estate training and professional education experience, Florida real estate school Larson Educational Services is the premier provider of Florida real estate licensing, exam preparation, post-licensing, CAM licensing, mortgage loan originator licensing, and continuing education in Southwest Florida. Classes are available in Fort Myers, Naples, Sarasota, and online.

Brad Larson

Larson Educational Services

13040 Livingston Road #12

Naples, Florida 34105

info@LarsonEd.com

239-344-7510

www.LarsonEd.com