Author Archive

Adding Color to Small Spaces

June 23, 2014

color_in_small_spacesI recently helped a friend move into their new condo downtown, and one of the first things that I mentioned is that now would be the best time to start painting! When it comes to room design, a little color can go a long way, but many people hesitate when it comes to smaller spaces. They’re afraid that by adding color, they might make a room feel claustrophobic.

Color is one of the best ways to define a room, and a carefully chosen color can double a room’s apparent size! Here some of my tips for using color to create depth in small spaces. (more…)

Home Trends from the 80’s Are Making a Comeback

May 5, 2014

80s_interior_designRev up the DeLorean and get set to go back to the future! The same decade that spawned countless classics like Top Gun, Miami Vice and Charlie’s Angels is now back in style when it comes to home interior design.

While some ’80s trends — like pastel colors and neon socks — might make us shudder, others — like funky patterns and kitchen tables — deserve a second chance. Here’s a look at some ’80s trends designers have embraced and freshened up for today. (more…)

Top 5 Mistakes in Advertising Listings

April 7, 2014

oops_advertisingWith the news that talk show host David Letterman has decided to retire, I figured it’s a perfect time to run a Top 5 list: The Top 5 Mistakes Agents Make When Advertising Listings.

Many sales associates have approached me recently about doing additional advertising for their listings. We’ve all seen these mistakes (and possibly made them ourselves), so check out my list below and make sure that your ad stands head and shoulders above the rest.

#5 – A bad concept/design

How do I put this gently? Advertising a listing is about the listing, not the agent. You want to keep the focus on the home (not on you). Make sure the listing photo and details are more prominent than your headshot and contact information. (more…)

More Extreme Architecture from Around the Globe

February 10, 2014

Last month, I wrote a blog about some crazy, awesome architecture from around the world. It was so popular and I got so many emails about it, I’ve decided to run another!

Here are some more amazing buildings from around the world:


Haewoojae (Toilet House) – Suwant, South Korea.

The late mayor of Suwon, South Korea, Sim Jae-Duck, built this toilet-shaped, two-story home to mark the 2007 inaugural meeting of the World Toilet Association. It is now a toilet museum. The 4,520-square-foot steel, concrete, and glass structure features a showcase, glass-walled bathroom at it’s center. Those concerned with privacy can turn the walls opaque at the touch of a button. The home also features a roof-top balcony that’s accessible by a “toilet drain” staircase and equipped with rainwater harvesting technology. (more…)

Extreme Architecture from Around the Globe

January 13, 2014

Every once and a while, a money laden business mogul comes along and makes an architect’s dreams come true. They let their imagination run wild, and the end product can be awesome, crazy, or a mixture of both.

Here are some amazing buildings from around the world:


Piano and Violin Building – Huainan City, China.

Built in 2007, the Piano and Violin Building was designed by students of the Hefey University of Technology along with designers from Huainan Fangkai Decoration Project Company. It was built to promote a newly-developed area of the city. (more…)

Social Networking: Don’t Violate GREC Guidelines

December 2, 2013

social_media_guidelinesDon’t you find it interesting that the rise of social media happened almost in unison with the 2007 housing market crash? It might not have been a coincidence so much as a necessity. Businesses needed cheap methods of getting in contact with their customers, and costly marketing tools were replaced by free blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and many more social media avenues.

It’s no surprise that these tools are still widely used even with the market returning. But since social media is still considered a form of marketing, sales associates need to make sure they are meeting all of the requirements of the License Laws, Rules, and Regulations of the Georgia Real Estate Commission (GREC).

According to the GREC, here are some DON’Ts when using social media either personally or in your professional real estate activities: (more…)

Paint it Black!

October 21, 2013

black_houseHow do you like this black house in Germany? Do you find it spooky or classy? Could black be the new “it” color when it comes to choosing home exterior color?

Probably not.

This black house in Mohringen, Germany is actually an art installation! The house had been scheduled for demolition, and the artist wanted to do a tribute to the house before it was bulldozed. Guess what they put up in its place once it was demolished – an art gallery! (more…)

A Guide to #Hashtags

September 16, 2013

hashtagsWhat’s a hashtag? Well, on Twitter – and increasingly everywhere else – a hashtag is a word or phrase (with no spaces or punctuation) preceded by the hash symbol (#), which gives users an easy way to communicate around a single theme.

Example: #RealEstate.

The use of hashtags in social media originated back in August 2007, when designer Chris Messina asked his Twitter followers how they felt about using the pound sign (#) to group conversations on the micro-blogging platform, and became the first person to use the hashtag in its modern capacity.

While hashtags began on Twitter, they have now spread to Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Vine, and Facebook.

The beauty of hashtags is that it makes your post, message or photo searchable by any user on that social network, not just those that follow you.

So how can you use hashtags to your advantage? (more…)

Set Your Home’s “Stage” with the Perfect Curtains

July 22, 2013

curtains_buying_guideWho thought that curtains could be such a big deal in your home? While it may seem like an afterthought to some sellers, curtains frame a room in the same way a good haircut frames a face. The right choice of curtain can change the look and feel of a space, and help your home sell faster.

Sometimes, the wrong curtain choice could make your home look older than it actually is, dating it for potential buyers. Even worse, homes without curtains look drab, especially if your blinds are the simple metal kind.

If you’re thinking about buying curtains, keep these 12 things in mind. (more…)

Lowering Your Energy Bills During the Summer Months

July 8, 2013

energy_savingsI don’t know about you, but my energy bills always seem to rise along with the warm summer temperatures. Over the years, I’ve gathered a variety of methods for keeping my energy costs down during the summer months, and making sure that my bills don’t break the bank.

Here are 5 tried and true (and new!) methods for saving money on your house bills this summer: (more…)

Home Improvement: 12 Key Questions to Ask Before You Hire a Contractor

May 13, 2013

home_improvement_contractorSpring is the season for home improvement. The weather is great, and everyone is in a “fix ‘er up” mood. In addition, many sellers consider home improvement before putting their home on the market.

A few small improvements could make a world of difference in selling your home. While major renovations might raise the cost of your home, minor fixes might help it sell faster.

Whether it’s big or small, I strongly recommend hiring a home improvement professional for a variety of jobs: Electrical, structural or even cosmetic. While painting the house might seem like a job you might be able to handle on your own, there is a chance that your time could be better spent elsewhere.

With this in mind, I’ve come up with some key questions to ask your contractor before signing any type of contract with them: (more…)

Nationwide Open House Weekend: Open House Checklist

April 15, 2013

Nationwide_Open_HouseThis weekend, open houses will be held at listings across the country! The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) has been promoting a Nationwide Open House Weekend each year, and this year it falls on April 20 and 21.

Be sure to tell your buyers about this incredible opportunity to view homes this weekend. With listing inventory being as low as it is, this will give buyers a chance to see what homes are available in their area.

Plus, listing agents should tell their sellers about this unique occasion to attract buyers for their home. This only occurs once a year, and it could be their chance to sell their home!

In honor of Nationwide Open House Weekend, I’d like to share my checklist for preparing for an open house: (more…)

Your Bad E-mail Habits May Send the Wrong Message

April 8, 2013

bad_email_habitsEmail has become one of the most common methods of communication, especially when it comes to being a real estate agent. When it comes to sending and receiving contracts, forms, information and more, the fax machine is simply a dinosaur. Can you imagine not being able to email a buyer an MLS sheet? We use email for everything nowadays!

But have you considered that your e-mails may be sending the wrong message to your clients or your peers? Forbes highlighted e-mail habits that can send the wrong message in a recent article. Here are five items on their list:  (more…)

The Digital House Hunt

March 25, 2013

digital_house_huntAt FUSION 2013 in Las Vegas, I sat in on a session called “The Digital House Hunt: Using Data Search Trends to Tailor Your Online Marketing” hosted by Heather Elias of the National Association of Realtors® (NAR). She discussed a special NAR report called “The Digital House Hunt” that was performed with the assistance of Google.

Released in Jan. 2013, this report connects the dots between online home searches and shopping patterns. It shows how shoppers use online tools and sites as they progress through the process. More importantly, it gives you a blueprint for how to market to these consumers.

Here are some highlights from the report: (more…)

The Power of Craigslist

March 4, 2013

craigslist_blogDid you know that Craigslist generates more than 20 billion page views per month, making it the 7th overall most trafficked website in the world? Many sales associates take advantage of Craigslist as a listing resource, but they aren’t using it effectively.

Craigslist isn’t like eBay or other auction sites that charge you to post an item and takes a percentage of the selling price. It’s free to have an account, and you aren’t charged for posting or selling a home, so it’s no wonder that agents across the country use this tool to augment their selling power.

Here are some tips for using Craigslist successfully: (more…)