2013: Embracing Change!

Several years ago, while on the Internet, I came across an article in which the CEO of IBM, Sam Palmisano, made the following statement…

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1.”If it’s possible that prices will continue to fall, why should I buy now?”

Here’s an answer from Broker Pam Ermen…The truth is, IT IS DIFFICULT to outrun the interest rate if you choose to define your entire home buying decision by whether home prices will continue to fall  Here’s a great rule of thumb…a 1% increase in the interest rate is equal to a 10% loss in buying power!  As stated by REALTOR.org, price is normally the major concern when selling a home, while cost is often the main concern when purchasing one. So, if you’re deciding whether to buy now, you should take into account what your monthly payment will be, considering not only the price of the home but also the interest rate of your mortgage. Waiting for prices to bottom out while rates are increasing can wind up costing more over the life of the mortgage. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®, PMI, and the National Mortgage Bankers Association are all that projecting interest rates will increase over the next several quarters. Consider talking to a Regional Home Mortgage Loan Officer  to help you determine what an interest rate increase might cost you if you continue to sit on the fence!

All I Need To Know I Learned From The Easter Bunny!

All I need to know

I learned from the Easter Bunny!

  •  Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.  
  •  Everyone needs a friend who is all ears.
  • There’s no such thing as too much candy.
  • All work and no play can make you a basket case.
  • Everyone is entitled to a bad hare day.
  • Let happy thoughts multiply like rabbits.
  • Some body parts should be floppy.
  • Keep your paws off of other people’s jelly beans.
  • Good things come in small, sugar coated packages.
  • The grass is always greener in someone else’s basket.
  • To show your true colors, you have to come out of the shell.
  • The best things in life are still sweet and gooey.

May the joy of the season fill your heart.


Happy Easter!

What To Do With Your Spring Fever This Year

Did you know that doctors believe that Spring fever is rooted in brain science?

The longer and brighter days of Spring mean that we are exposed to more sunlight. The additional exposure causes our brains to lessen the release of melatonin, the chemical that makes us more tired in the winter, and increase levels of serotonin, which is a mood boosting neurotransmitter. Regardless of the cause, you can be sure of one thing; Spring fever is the perfect medicine for those winter blues.

What local events and activities to you plan on getting involved in with all of that new found energy? Here are a few Hampton Roads events to take advantage of this Spring.


April 16 — International Children’s Festival, Mill Point Park, downtown Hampton

April 30 — NATO Fest, Town Point Park, downtown Norfolk 

May 12-14 — Great Dismal Swamp Birding Festival, Suffolk

May 7 — Spring Town Point Virginia Wine Festival, Norfolk

May 13-15 — Air Power Over Hampton Roads, Langley Air Force, Hampton

May 14 — Virginia Beer Festival, Town Point Park, downtown Norfolk

May 19-22 — Chesapeake Jubilee, Chesapeake City Park

May 21-22 — Stockley Gardens Spring Arts Festival, Norfolk

May 28-29 — Pungo Strawberry Festival, Virginia Beach

June 2-5 —Newport News Greek Festival

June 3-5 — Hampton Blackbeard Pirate Festival

June 10-12 — Harborfest, Town Point Park, downtown Norfolk.

June 16-19 — Boardwalk Art Show and Festival, Virginia Beach

Earning Our Share of the Commission

If you’ve had any tenure in the real estate business, you have had the opportunity to see our industry grow…change…evolve… and lately, literally morph in front of our eyes! The same process has occurred in the role of the Broker or Owner of a real estate company. In the earlier years, providing a well equipped office (complete with your own phone, desk, and chair!) was the basis of a successful business relationship. As that business became more complex and purchase agreements grew from a one page document to pages in multiples of 10, specialized training was added to the menu of important benefits the broker brought to the bargaining table. Over the past decade or so, huge growths in technology have kicked that up a notch, and the Brokers and Owners that provided systems and tools that helped their agents keep up, not only with the agents at a competitor’s company…but with the consumer who had a world of information and technology products at their fingertips…were able to justify their value.

Ever feel like this?

Today, there is a new challenge…TOO much information! So many agents are simply overwhelmed with an almost daily surge of new and exciting tech products, gadgets, processes and online marketing concepts, to the point that if feels like their brains are hitting the “overload button”… aching from the focus required to even attempt to keep up, let alone get ahead of it all.

And that’s where every great Broker in today’s real estate world has an opportunity to step up to the plate one more time. We have the chance to be a valuable FILTER for our sales team. Of course, this is not as easy as it sounds! To do this, we must time block daily to read and research what’s going on, often reaching past our local marketplace and venturing into a much bigger world of information and discussions. Getting to know the country’s most popular airports is often in the mix as we seek out the best minds in the industry to help US define the difference between the “must know” ideas and the “half baked” ones. In turn, we can put the best stuff in front of our own, allowing them to benefit from latest and greatest, vs. being distracted by what isn’t.

It’s an exciting world out there, and it’s going to continue to change faster than ever! Technology offers every Broker, regardless of their size, generational background or marketplace, the opportunity to make sure their sales force is as excited about it as they are. As Brokers, we must prospect daily, searching out that one gold nugget of information or technology that can make a difference today…always remembering that tomorrow is only 24 hours away!