Monthly Archives: January 2013

Peak Producers – Day 4

Today Brian talked about about the elements of a strategic approach and that not only do real estate buyers need to fully engage with us but they also need to fully engage in the home buying process.

Although this is not news to most agents, the way Brian puts it into perspective really does make sense and should help real estate agents better serve their buyer and renter clients.  Brian suggests the following:

  1. Focus in finding a style and a neighborhood first, then look at actual homes.
  2. Use a property feedback form for each property viewed.
  3. Remember, finding a home is not a process of selection but a process of elimination.

The job of a real estate agent working with buyers is to help them make a decision by using a systematic approach.

Makes sense… what do you think?

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Peak Producers Day 3

How would you like three extra transactions this quarter?

 

One thing that really resounded with me on day two was Brian’s point that Peak Producers prioritize.  They are not bumblebees flitting around doing a little but of this and that but they all have the same core competency: prioritization.  Prioritize your people so you can prioritize your time so you can then prioritize your activities.

I saw this really clicking with everyone on day three as we discussed the actions required to honestly build a professional business.

Again, it was another great day for our Peak Producers! The activity is breeding excitement which is contagious for everyone! We all re-committed to “just doing what Brian says” and completing all of our activity assignments for the day. I cannot wait to see what tomorrow brings!

OMG! It Works! (aka Peak Producers Day 2)

Yep, you heard it here folks! After our first day of class we have our very first success story!

One of our Peak Producers took Brian’s challenge that two hours of daily face-to-face, voice-to-voice contact with your past clients will result in business and came back to class today with five leads! Talk about an immediate return on investment.

Peak Producers Starts Red Hot!

Today was the first day of teaching my first Buffini and Company Peak Producers class as a Buffini Certified Mentor and, by all accounts, we are off to an awesome start!

How would you like three extra transactions this quarter?

Habit, Attitude, Skill

Eight enterprising and committed Peak Producers braved freezing rain to come into Old Town, Alexandria for our first class, all of them exhibiting the type of dedication and enthusiasm that spells success, given the right tools and strategies.  Retooling ourselves, we started the day with everyone pledging to put all preconceived notions and established habits aside and, then committing to just “do what Brian says” for the duration of the 12-week program.  If it works, don’t fix it, and Brian’s strategy has been proven to work a thousand times over. And with that, we dove into the course.

After the main session I asked everyone what their biggest take away was from Day 1. At the top of the list was Brian’s point that sales and marketing is your business and a Peak Producer needs to commit to spending at least two hours each day making face-to-face or voice-to-voice contact with his/her clients. This is your top priority. You make time for making flyers, putting up signs, and installing lockboxes. The personal contact must be your top priority.

The other great point was what a Peak Producer HAS:
Habits
Attitude
Skill

At the end of the first day’s session, it was clear to all of us, I think, that we are all going to walk out of this program in 12 weeks a lot more capable and a lot better at what we do than we were when we walked in this morning.  

What a great start! What a great day! I love my business. I love my job!

Here’s a Great Way to Clean a Smelly Disposal

Is something smelling off in your kitchen? It’s not the trash or the refrigerator or even the dog food bowl. Checked the over and last week’s chicken you forgot to cook is definitely not still defrosting in the oven. Oddly enough, have you thought to check your garbage disposal? As crazy as it sounds, those amazing chopping machines that can take on almost anything have been known to get an icky gunk build-up of residue from pulverized food.

We’ve poured all kinds of things down our kitchen garbage disposal to make it clean and sweet-smelling – orange and grapefruit peels, dried-out lemons, baking soda and vinegar.

But we never thought of throwing salt down there – until we read this tip.
Here’s how it works:

  • Fit a stopper into the sink, and fill with hot water and a squirt of dish detergent.
  • Turn on the disposal and let the soapy water drain, pushing gunk down the drain with it.
  • Throw 3 or 4 ice cubes and a handful of large-grain salt, such as Kosher, down the drain and run the disposal.
  • Flush with water, and you’ve got a clean disposal. Grind up a few lemons if you want a fresh, citrus smell.

Voila! A fresh-smelling drain!

On the Mortgage Horizon

I just got this from a lender we frequently do business with regarding the new Qualified Mortgage rule expected from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau …it is an interesting read.

Mortgage questions?  Call us for answers! 703-836-1464

Mortgage questions? Call us for answers! 703-836-1464

This week CNN discussed the new Qualified Mortgage (QM) rule the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is likely to release.  The new QM Rule is not expected to become effective until January 2014.

The new Qualified Mortgage (QM) rule is designed to establish new lending rules that will move us between the footloose times of no documentation loans and the current strict credit standards.  The QM proposes that borrower’s total debt to income ratios be capped at 43% of their monthly gross income.  It would also limit the risky products offered by lenders.  Such as, no more loan terms greater than 30 years, mortgage loans can’t have a balloon payment due, no loans in which the principle due increases over time, and interest only loans would go out the window as well.  Homebuyers who choose adjustable rate mortgages will no longer be qualified on low introductory teaser rates, but rather the fully indexed rate.

The QM rule is designed to help lenders determine the borrower’s ability to repay the loan by evaluating all aspects of their credit profile.  Such as current income and assets, employment history, credit history, the proposed mortgage payment to include insurance, real estate taxes, HOA dues, mortgage insurance and a borrower’s total monthly debt to income ratios.

This is not designed to alter the housing market’s recovery and assist consumers who can’t meet the 43% debt to income ratios, the agency said it was establishing a second, temporary category of qualified mortgages that meet most of the new guidelines and would qualify to be purchased or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.  Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said, “The legitimate concern is that this will cement the tight mortgage underwriting standard that we currently have in place, and most people agree that they are too tight.”

Mary Ellen Podmolik of the Chicago Tribune reported:

Under the new rules, lenders who make qualified mortgages to well-qualified borrowers that carry a lesser chance of defaulting could be shielded from lawsuits from these prime borrowers who say the lender did not satisfy the ability-to-repay requirements.  Riskier, subprime borrowers could challenge the lender’s assessment of their ability to repay the loan but borrowers would have to prove that a lender didn’t adequately factor in the living expenses and other debts.

Diane Thompson, of counsel at the National Consumer Law center said, “They appear to favor lenders’ interest above consumers.  You have to prove what’s in the creditor’s records.  It may be that no homeowners are able to challenge it.  Otherwise, you’re relying on regulatory oversight, and we say how well that worked.”

In summary, the QM rule is designed to protect consumers from irresponsible mortgage lending and protect taxpayers from having to bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.  Lenders will be restricted from offering risky products to the consumer and charged with the task of responsible lending.  CFPB director Richard Cordray explained, the ability to repay rule is a common-sense answer to curb the borrowing and lending behavior that led to the financial crash.  Cordray says, “When consumers sit down at the closing table, they shouldn’t be set up to fail with mortgages they can’t afford.  Our ability to repay rule protects borrowers from the kinds of risky lending practices that resulted in so many families losing their homes.  This common-sense rule ensures responsible borrowers get responsible loans.”

Prudential PenFed Realty…helps homeless families transition

Prudential PenFed Realty – Alexandria/Arlington Office …helping Beth el House help homeless families transition

From the Beth el Congregation newsletter:

On Sunday, December 2, BEH volunteers gathered at Prudential Penfed Realty offices in Old Town, Alexandria for our annual Phonathon. We want to thank everyone who responded; however, it is not too late to make a contribution. We are still accepting contributions for the 2012 fundraising drive. Volunteers made over 600 telephone calls and organized letters for bulk mailing. We especially want to thank Conne Rubinstein for organizing the Phonathon again this year and  Jill Hanig for graciously making her office available.

It is so great to be able to help give back to the community and helping families find homes is at the core of our business.