What I Found Out by Downloading My Facebook Data

Downloading Facebook DataFacebook has been in the news as of late regarding the amount of data they have collected on their users, and in turn given that data to an analytics company which was later used to possibly influence it’s users based on their affiliations and likes. In the real estate field, we know that the use of social media to interact, engage, and educate is super important. I decided to take the plunge, and here is what I found out by downloading my Facebook data.

Many of us generate business and clients using platforms like Facebook and Instagram (owned by Facebook). What we don’t realize is the more we use platforms like Facebook, the more information they obtain about us. Like many of you, I’m not oblivious to the fact that data is always being collected, as we tell the world about our day, what we like/don’t like, and input phone numbers and emails on various websites. The larger issue is how this data is used and by whom. I decided to find out what data Facebook has stored on me and man was I in for a surprise!

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The Two Different Title Company Business Models Explained

Having been in the Title business since 2005, I have seen many things as it relates to methods used by Title Companies to generate business. When I was a Title sales rep in Phoenix, AZ most of the major Title Companies has sales teams. These salespeople would lead generate Realtors and lenders to create Title orders for their company. There were some companies that had joint ventures or MSA’s (market service agreements) but they were not prevalent. Mostly because of the many Title salespeople each company had that caused the “capture rate” of those agreements are pretty low. When I moved to the Washington DC area, I found the opposite is true. Most Title Companies had joint ventures or other agreements in place and very few employed salespeople who generated the organic business. Let’s discuss the two different Title Company business models, how they work and the major differences.

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5 Major Ways Stewart Title is Different Than Our Competition

This is not a blog about how amazing Stewart Title is because we have the best service, escrow staff, etc. Everyone says that about their company. I want to talk about the REAL differences that influence and affect YOU…our clients. Settlement and Title Companies are everywhere in each market. Figuring out who to use to support your business can be tough, especially if they essentially all do the same things. Realtors are viewed the same way. If you don’t have at least one strong value proposition, you are in trouble as consumers will view you as the same as other Realtors.

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How to Make Sure Your Real Estate Sales Funnel is Always Full

Real Estate Sales FunnelI was having lunch last week with a client and we were discussing his current business model. This client primarily works by referral and spends his marketing dollars and time sending notes, making calls, and doing pop-byes. All great, but I asked him a question…“What are you doing to keep your real estate sales funnel full…with NEW people?” He looked at me and I could tell he was unsure on the answer. If your entire database is 50 people, it is a limited number of people who can use your services and refer you to others. What if your database was 100 or 200+ people? What would that look like for your business? This applies for Realtors, Lenders, and Title Reps. You have to always be adding new people into the sales funnel. Not doing so limits your business tremendously. Taking the right “action steps” to get new people is the challenging part. Here are some tips to make it happen!

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Stewart Title Partners with Pavaso to Strengthen the eClosing Process

For quite a while, there have been rumblings in our industry about eClosings.  If you are unaware about eClosings, they allow us to conduct a settlement with a buyer/borrower electronically over a computer. Essentially we are doing a “face-time” with the buyer and they sign their closing documents similar to DocuSign. The documents are “e-notarized” and “e-recorded.” If you think this is too outside the box, keep in mind, this technology has been used for years for many things we do in our normal lives. I can pay my mortgage on my phone through an app, or I can order Domino’s Pizza and know online exactly when it goes into the oven. Why not closing on a home? The eClosing process is very easy and Stewart Title has partnered with Pavaso to make things even easier for our clients. Here is a press release that just came out:

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Lack of Real Estate Leads Is Hardly Your Problem

Lack of Real Estate LeadsI recently taught a class at a Realtor association for new agents called: “I Just Got my Real Estate License…Now What?” The class was 2 hours long and covered a variety of topics to help these new agents get their businesses off the ground. When the class ended, each person was given an evaluation form of the instructor (Me!) and how I did. One thing caught my eye from one of the Realtors. The question on the form was “What are your biggest daily challenges?” The answer they gave was “Not enough Leads.” Unfortunately, the agent’s names were not on the evaluation forms, or I would have reached out to that agent to explain that the lack of real estate leads is hardly their problem.

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Book Review: Real Estate Success in 5 Minutes a Day-Secrets of a Top Agent Revealed

It’s a new year, which means new goals and the implementation of new ideas. Having been in the Title business since 2005 and interacting with thousands of Realtors, many like to keep their business models and success secrets close to the chest. I admire people who take the time to share their story and how they built their business, whether that be in real estate or anything else. Last year, at a Realtor “Master Mind Event” I met Karen Briscoe from Keller Williams in McLean, VA. She had just finished writing a real estate book entitled“Real Estate Success in 5 Minutes a Day-Secrets of a Top Agent Revealed.” I found this as pretty remarkable, since most high producing Realtors don’t want to share how they became so successful, let alone in a 400 page book!

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How to Make Your Real Estate Website GO in 2018

real estate websitesFor my last blog of the year, I thought I would discuss a subject that Realtors sometimes don’t like to talk about. Their real estate website. It’s like that crappy car you had when you were 16 years old. You know it’s not pretty, and not what you wish you were driving, but it does get you from point A to B. Now that a new year is here, it’s time to learn how to make your real estate website GO in 2018. Stop messing around with a bad online store front and start using one of the most valuable tools you have in real estate. I get it…you don’t know what to do or perhaps you think it costs a lot of money to make it happen. Here are some very simple things you can do, to increase your website rankings and get more eyes to your real estate website in the coming year.

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Why there is a Lack of Training for Title Insurance Sales Reps

Title Insurance Sales TrainingHaving been in the Title industry since 2005, I have seen many Title Sales Reps come and go with only a handful really “making it” and taking their business to truly lucrative levels. With thousands of Title Salespeople in the US, that means a huge majority either wash out or never find the level of success they are seeking. Why is that? The main reason is a massive lack of training for Title Insurance Sales Reps. When I started in the business, I received little to no training. Being the newest Title Rep of 20 for my Phoenix, AZ company, I “shadowed” a few people but none were eager to share how they grew a book of business or their success secrets. I was left floundering around for a while before actually learning the job and finding my way. That learning curve could have shortened if there was training available. Thankfully for me, I kept working hard and grew a successful business in not only Phoenix but 2000 miles away in the Washington DC area. With many Title sales reps reaching out for assistance for this very reason, let’s chat about why there is a lack of training for Title Insurance Sales reps and how we can fix it.

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Ask These Questions Before Waiving Owners Title Insurance

Owners Title InsuranceEver since the new TRID rules came into effect in 2015 we have seen people opt-out and waive Owners Title Insurance on the final Closing Disclosure. Doesn’t help that Owners Title Insurance can be found under the “Other” section on the CD and “Optional.” It’s always been optional to obtain, but I feel they could have done a better job of not making it appear as a non-meaningful purchase. Every month, we have a handful of people that decide to waive Owners Title Insurance and find it as a useful way to save money on their real estate transaction. Waiving Owners Title Insurance may seem smart at first, but has a long-lasting impact on your largest asset, especially when you decide to sell your home. Before you decline his one time purchase–look yourself in the mirror and ask yourself these questions.

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