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My offer got accepted, but the house doesn’t show as “Pending” in the MLS. It shows as “Active-Contingent”. What does that mean?


When buyers win the bid on a home, they want the comfort of knowing the property is off the market and safely under contract without threat of another buyer swooping in.  Imaging their anxiety when they find that the house appears to be active on the market?  Today, we will explain what active-contingent means and why a property might remain at that status despite being under contract.


A contingency is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as “a provision for an unforeseen event or circumstance.”  In real estate terms, a home inspection is an excellent example of a contingency.  Most contracts state that the buyer has a right to have the property inspected and to terminate the sale if the inspection results are unsatisfactory to the buyer.  Therefore, the sale is contingent upon the buyer accepting the results of the home inspection (a circumstance which cannot be foreseen until the inspection is completed). 


Other common contingencies are financing, clear title, and appraisal.  In essence, almost all real estate sales are contingent upon something and should be listed as active-contingent in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) until all contingencies have been removed.


Then why are so many sales listed as “Pending” even when there are contingencies to be met and how do you determine when a sale is contingent and when it’s pending?  While most MLS’s have rules that define each status, the choice on how to display a property is highly subjective and up to each individual real estate office to determine based on their interpretation of those rules.  Basically, two properties in the same MLS might be under contract with the exact same contingencies and one will be listed as active-contingent and the other as pending.


You are at this point better informed, but not necessarily satisfied.  So, let’s talk about what this distinction means to the buyer – nothing.  When a seller has signed acceptance of a purchase contract that includes contingencies, they may not terminate that contract and take another offer as long as the contingencies are met without changes to the contract.  In other words, as long as the home inspection goes well and the buyer does not ask for any repairs, price reductions or other changes to the contract, the seller must continue to fulfill their end of the contract and cannot move on to other buyers without committing breach of contract.  So don’t worry about the status in the MLS.  Your agent will guide you through removing your contingencies and will advise you as to the pros and cons of addressing concerns if they arise. 


Remember, however, that your agent is not typically also a licensed attorney and cannot give you legal advice.  As you move throughout the transaction, if at any time you are concerned that the seller is in breach of contract or you are concerned about your actions or their legal ramifications, you should consult an attorney.


Remember that most contingencies are built into the offer to protect the buyer from unforeseen issues and it is only fair that the seller be able to allow showings or take inquiries on the property until all of those contingencies have been removed.  While they cannot accept another offer as long as the contract is progressing as agreed, they want to have the right to have other buyers on “backup” in case a contingency leads to a termination.


If you have any questions – call us.  And remember:   “We’ve done this a million times”

Guide to Obtaining your Real Estate License in Michigan


With offices in Battle Creek and Marshall, MI, we often meet with individuals who are interested in real estate as a career and the most common question we get is “What does it take to get licensed?”


In Michigan, a licensed agent must start by completing and passing a 40 hour pre-licensing class.  Classes are offered in person, in a virtual classroom setting, or in an independent on-line form.  We recommend new licensees skip the independent on-line courses and opt for the class setting whether that be in-person or virtual.  Taking the class in this setting allows for live questions and discussions that will deepen the student’s understanding of the subject.  At RE/MAX Perrett, we recommend two educational sources: Holloway’s Real Estate Institute ( and Kalamazoo Area Association of Realtors (  Just go to their website to see their class schedule and cost.  It is important that you work with the right school and we know that these schools in particular properly prepare you to pass the state licensing exam.


Which brings us to the next step:  The State of Michigan Real Estate Salesperson Examination.  Once you pass your pre-licensing class, you must apply for a license and schedule the Real Estate Salesperson exam through PSI Services.  You apply for your license at  After submitting your license application, you will receive an email providing you with your Exam Candidate ID number, which is needed to register for the exam.  Exam registration can be found on line at or by calling 800-733-9267.  That information is also in the description below.


Lastly, you need to be hired by a broker.  Licensed real estate agents must work under a licensed broker.  You should interview the brokers in your area and find the office that is the right fit for you.  To interview with RE/MAX Perrett Associates, just call 269-968-6101 and ask for our broker, Lisa Damron.  Once you pass the test, you will be required to provide the Sate with your employing broker’s information to complete the application process and receive your license.


Now that the process is complete, you are ready to sell!  While the class will teach you the real estate law you need, your brokerage will teach you the ins and outs of listing, showing and selling real estate where you can enjoy a career that provides growth and flexibility and is suited to those who are self-motivated and driven toward their goals.


Have any questions?  Feel free to call us at 269-968-6101.  We’re happy to talk to you at any stage and help you explore real estate as a career.

4 Easy Changes for a More Organized Business



Just to clarify: Selling real estate and being a Realtor can be extremely hard. Realtors work with people, and people will surprise you with challenges every day, but the actual mechanics of keeping track of clients and transactions does not change very much. With the right systems in place, it can be easy. The catch, of course, is that most agents never put those systems into place. As a matter of fact, like the graphic above, many spend more time running around putting out fires, handling surprises and avoiding the work of creating systems than they need to.

Time IS like money - you spend it or you save it. One way to save it is to invest in ways that make it grow and earn you more. Unfortunately, by the time most agents find they need systems, the job feels too big to tackle.  So, here are 4 small and easy changes to start you on the road to a more organized business.

  1. SET A WORK SCHEDULE AND POST IT - Decide what hours you will work each day. Write them down and let your family and your clients know.    

           Example:  M-Th 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Fridays, 11am to 6pm, Saturdays from 9am to noon and Tuesday and Thursday evenings by appointment.

           If you wake up Monday morning and you have no set appointments, go to work anyway and work from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm as scheduled. Spend that time doing the prospecting, file management and client follow-up that never seems to get done. Just this change alone will free up your non-working hours, allowing you to spend them with family, hobbies, friends, etc.

  1. CREATE A DATABASE - At the least, Gmail is a database. Your data base should include the following for all customers and clients: Full Name, Address, Phone, Email, Classification (seller, buyer, past client, friend, etc), special dates (Birthday, Anniversary, Home Anniversary, etc) and notes.
  1. USE CHECKLISTS: Don’t push yourself to do more, be more, earn more – push yourself to be consistent. Your business will grow when you create consistencies. Consistency comes with checklists. You should have some sort of checklist for every aspect of your business, whether it is an electronic “action plan” or a paper checklist. The good news is that you do not have to create them yourself. Your broker has access to checklists for new buyers, new listings, pending sales, post-closing follow-up and everything in between. If your franchise provides you with a free CRM, there are action plans that you can apply to clients. DotLoop and Zipforms provide task lists for tracking your transactions. Any time you forget to do something, you should make yourself implement a checklist to track that activity. Where will you find the time to do this? Re-read the part about setting a work schedule.
  1. SCHEDULE ACTIVITIES JUST LIKE THEY ARE APPONTMENTS – Schedule 1 hour twice a week to update your pending files. Schedule 1 hour a week to call all your sellers and give them feedback and updates. Schedule 1 hour each week to call and update all of your current buyers. Schedule 2 hours each week to reach out to past customers and clients and schedule 30 minutes/day to update your social media channels. Treat these as appointments and schedule your other appointments around them. If your sellers know they will hear from you every Tuesday morning, they are much less likely to call you all hours of the day, seven days a week. You will be amazed at how orderly and controlled your days will become when you take command of your schedule.

Is this all overwhelming? Then just do #1 and start working a consistent schedule. Once the benefits have proven themselves to you, you will be ready to take the next step. I heard a diet expert say that it does not matter at all which diet you choose. Weight Watchers, Keto, Paleo, Whole 30, Atkins…they all work. What matters is the moment you make the decision to actually follow one. That rang true to me and rings true with getting your business organized as well. What systems you implement, and how you implement them is not important. What is important is that you make the decision to begin implementing systems. Good Luck and call me if I can help in any way!

How Can Buyers Win in This Market?


In this seller’s market, where there are multiple offers on new listings within the first day, many buyers are bidding and losing on several properties before finally “winning” a new home.  These buyers find themselves asking, “what do I need to do to Win?”  Here is quick run-down of several strategies our agents have used to help their buyers win the bid.  The graph at the bottom of this post summarizes these strategies and their pros and cons.


Know what the seller really wants: Ask your agent to communicate with the listing agent to see what is most important to the seller.  Sometimes a seller wants more time to move and flexible or longer possession after the closing may be more attractive than a higher offer that needs immediate possession.  Any information about the seller’s wishes can work toward giving you  an edge.

Make your best offer first: Buyers should NEVER assume that a seller will come back after the initial offer round and allow buyers to increase their offer (known as a “highest and best” situation).  Buyer’s should ask themselves, “If someone beats me by $1, will I wish I had offered more?”  If the answer is yes, consider making a higher offer.

Understand how your financing may affect your offer: While FHA and VA financing can be very attractive to a buyer with lower down-payment requirements, they come with appraisal requirements that are more strict than conventional or cash offers. If you do not qualify for conventional financing, consider offering to cover any lender-required repairs up-front to eliminate the seller’s concern about appraisal issues.

Cover the appraisal difference: Bidding wars drive up the price, sometimes higher than the actual value of the home. Sellers can be hesitant to choose the highest offer if they don’t think the house will appraise at that value.  Offering to cover any or some of the difference between the purchase price and appraised value can mitigate that concern.  A buyer who chooses to do this, though, should be aware that they are paying above-market value and might not be able to get their money back when they sell.

Cover the seller’s closing costs: It has become very common for buyers to ask sellers to pay their closing costs. What is less common is a buyer offering to pay the seller’s costs.  These costs could include transfer taxes, title insurance, Realtor fees and closing agent charges.  Buyers could offer to cover some or all of these seller costs.

Consider an escalation clauseIf you don’t know what this is, read our January 28 post. These clauses allow the buyer to add an escalated price to compete with possible higher offers.

Consider waiving inspections or doing a “walk-through inspection”We will go on record now to state that we do not recommend a buyer purchase without proper inspections. However, the inspection contingency is a big hurdle to the seller that they would rather avoid.  If a buyer is familiar with home issues and feels comfortable taking on any repairs, they may choose to waive the inspection.  Another option would be to bring someone knowledgeable with them to the showing who can give them a heads-up to potential issues before they make an offer. 

Hold the offer as a back-up: Offers made during a bidding war are made in haste and the winning deal may not always close.  Buyers should consider asking the seller to hold their offer as a back-up in “first position” if the accepted buyer terminates during the transaction.  This can be a complicated situation.  The buyer’s agent should be sure to include a clause allowing the buyer to back out if they find other suitable housing.


As we said, these are strategies that our agents have used to win the bid.  They all have consequences to consider and should be done with the guidance of an experienced agent.  We would love to hear if you have additional strategies to share.  Just click on the FB link on our homepage to share.  And as always, if you have any questions, we are here to help.

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Further Consideration for Escalation Clauses

Is this escalation clause based on the gross or the net??? What does that even mean?



In our June 8, 2020 post, we introduced escalation clauses with a quick primer describing them and listing the pros and cons for buyers and sellers.

As these clauses are tested, we are finding there is a common misconception worth further explanation. The confusion comes in determining if the escalation is to be applied to the gross or net offer.

Let’s start by defining gross and net offers with an illustration of Buyer A and Buyer B.  Buyer A is preapproved for a loan. They have the money they need for their down payment, but not enough to also cover their closing costs. Buyer B has enough cash out of pocket to cover both their down payment and closing costs. Their offers look like this:

Buyer A offers $154,600 and asks the seller to cover their closing costs of roughly 3% of the purchase price ($4,600).

Buyer B offers $150,000 with no request for seller-paid closing costs.


Here’s how those offers look side by side:


                                            Buyer A                                  Buyer B

Gross offer price               $154,600                               $150,000

Less Closing Costs            -  $ 4,600                                            0

Net Proceeds to Seller      $150,000                              $150,000


In this illustration, Buyer A’s offer is higher, but the net to the seller is equal to Buyer B’s offer. 

Now, let’s add the escalation clause: In this example, buyer A’s offer stays the same, but Buyer B’s offer is $148,000 with no closing costs and an escalation clause that says, “Buyer hereby increases their offer by the amount necessary to give the seller a net sale price that is $1,000 above the net sales price in the competing offer not to exceed a maximum contract sales price of $160,000”.

Many agents in reading this would immediately make the mistake of thinking that Buyer A’s offer is $154,600, so Buyer B’s escalation would make their offer $155,600 ($1,000 higher). But the clause says, “$1,000 above the net sales price”. So, in this case, Buyer A’s net to seller is still $150,000 and Buyer B’s offer with the escalation clause is $151,000.

If you’re having a hard time getting your head around this, remember that the seller does not get all the money Buyer A is offering. Some of it goes to the Buyer’s lender for their costs. They only actually get what is “left over”.

This illustration should also make agents aware that it is important to use a well-written addendum that clearly states how the escalation is to be applied. Our local association has approved a form for use that covers these bases. And, as always, if you have any questions, call us at RE/MAX, we’ve done this a million times.

Standard Purchase Agreement Clauses


Purchase agreements are written to clarify most concerns

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There are common questions that buyers and sellers ask during the process of a home sale.  Questions such as: “Are they leaving the lawn mower?” or “How long will I have after closing to move out?”


Over time, answers to the most common of these questions have been built into our contracts in the form of standard clauses.  Most agents who sell real estate in the greater Calhoun County area use a common purchase agreement that has been reviewed by an attorney and is approved by our local Association of Realtors.  Here are some of the standard clauses in that contract and the common questions they answer:


The Financing Contingency Clause:  This clause requires the buyer to be specific as to how they will be paying for the property (cash, mortgage, land contract, etc) as well as what type of loan they will be getting, if any, what their down-payment and interest rate will be, and it establishes deadlines for the buyer to perform.


The Inspection Clause: Buyers are given the opportunity to do any and all inspections they feel they need to verify the condition of the home.  The inspection clause gives them this opportunity, but it also puts a time limit on the process.  It gives the buyer the opportunity to re-negotiate or terminate the sale  if the inspections reveal concerns.  The seller also has the opportunity to terminate the contract if they feel the buyer’s requests are unreasonable.


The Possession Clause: This clause works to be sure that all parties agree as to when the sellers will give possession to the buyer.  It also clarifies that the seller will leave the property in its current condition giving the buyer the opportunity to pursue legal action if the seller damages the property or removes items that should not have been removed.


 The Clause Concerning Personal Property:  Many disagreements have arisen when the buyers and sellers have different expectations as to what stays and what goes.  This clause works to clarify expectations and to determine if items that normally are included (like a water softener) are owned by the seller or are rented. 


Additional Costs and Who Pays for Them:  There are several paragraphs in the contract that address extra items like surveys, home warranties, title insurance, etc.  By including standard wording, agents can fill in the blanks to ensure that everyone agrees on what needs to happen to complete the sale and who pays for them.


Utilizing these clauses in the contract, gives agents a consistent method to avoid missed expectations and mis-communication.  For this reason, it is important if you are the client that you review the contract carefully and check that blanks are filled in or crossed out to prevent un-answered questions.  If you have any questions, direct them back to your agent.  Don’t have an agent?  Call us – we’re always happy to help.


Multiple Offers: Best Practices for Realtors


Locally, we are currently experiencing a “Seller’s Market”. This occurs when the inventory (houses available for sale) is less than 6-month’s worth of demand. There are more buyers looking to purchase homes in the next six months than there will be homes available for sale.

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One of the common characteristics of a strong seller’s market is the receipt of multiple offers. Sellers can receive many offers on their listing and find themselves with the task of choosing the best. When multiple offers are in play and only one is accepted, it is natural to expect that someone is going to be disappointed. Problems arise when there are unmet expectations. The best way to smooth the process for competing buyers, their agents and the seller, is to set very clear expectations up front. Here are 5 things to remember when setting these expectations:

  • Develop a very clear process for handling multiple offers with the seller up front. Listing agents should discuss the possibility of multiple offers with the seller at the time of listing and agree in writing on exactly how they will be handled. RE/MAX Perrett Associates has developed a template that agents can use to accomplish this. This document can be used as an addendum to the listing agreement.
  • Once a plan is in place and expectations are set, COMMUNICATE. By using the marketing remarks in the on-line listing and the showing instructions to agents, listing agents can clearly communicate the seller’s plan for receiving and responding to multiple offers.
  • When creating a plan with the seller, try to answer these questions:
    1. How long will the seller collect offers before making a decision?
    2. Will all buyers who submit offers be notified that there are multiple offers and given a chance to increase their offer before a deadline?
    3. How long will seller take to make a decision?
    4. What will be the process for offers not accepted? Will they be held as backup offers?
  • Stick to the plan – Having the seller agree to the plan in writing encourages them to adhere to the plan when things get hectic. If the seller has agreed to wait 10 days before responding to any offers and then gets a great offer the first day, they may want to change their mind and jump on the offer in hand. Sellers have a right to change their mind, but they will be much more thoughtful in their decisions when they have already carefully considered the possibilities and have a plan in place. If the seller does decide to change the plan mid-stream, re-visit item 2!
  • Make sure buyers are aware of all of their options – This step is for buyer agents. Buyers can get very creative in working to be the “winning” bidder in a multiple offer situation. A buyer’s agent should be aware of all the tools at the buyer’s disposal including, but not limited to, escalation clauses, waiving of inspections, financing type, paying closing costs, etc. For more information on escalation clauses, see our post from June 8 of this year.

The common thread for all parties of making this process as clean and pain-free as possible is communication. Listing agents should communicate early with sellers about the process and possibilities. Buying agents should communicate early with buyers on their options. Listing and buying agents should communicate clearly and in a timely manner with offers, terms, changes, questions, etc. Setting expectations early and communicating them clearly are the key to navigating this wonderfully hectic seller’s market.

Top 7 Reasons that Real Estate Sales Fall Apart (and what you can do to keep them together)


The road to finding the right home is not easy, especially in our current market.  With inventory historically low, buyers have to watch the market and respond instantly to new prospective matches.  Even when they find the right match, they most likely will have to survive and win a bidding war to become the home’s next prospective owner.  After all that work, the last thing they want is for the deal to fall apart and start over again.  To prevent this from happening, we need to ask “Why do deals typically fall apart?”  A good agent and excited buyer can work on preventing these pitfalls by doing some work up front.

  • Buyer is only pre-qualified, not pre-approved. There is a big difference between a pre-approval and a pre-qualification and sometimes it takes an experienced agent to recognize the difference.  A prequalification is a statement from the lender that if everything the buyer told them about their work history, income, credit, etc is true, then they are good for a loan.   Very little if no verification has been done at this point.  A pre-approval letter lets a buyer and agent know that the lender has checked the buyer’s credit report, verified their employment and income, and reviewed their tax returns.  The buyer’s file has been through the underwriting process.  Often, when an offer is accepted from a buyer who is only pre-qualified, the process of closing the loan brings up credit or employment questions that can kill the loan and the deal.
  • Problems with the lender – Not all lenders can be relied on to deliver as promised. Sometimes a buyer’s lender will encourage a buyer that they are “good to go” without doing their due diligence.  They might tell a buyer they qualify for an FHA or RD mortgage when further investigation reveals they don’t.  They might promise grant money that is unavailable.  Sometimes, the lender’s underwriter is located in a different part of the country with different expectations for loans than a Michigan lender.  Maybe they don’t understand the value of acreage, or a basement.  Many Realtors prefer a buyer use a local lender that they have worked with before and trust.  They want someone close-by that has a local reputation to protect.  In the end, the buyer has the right to work with any lender, but it is highly recommended that you use someone that has been referred to you by someone you trust.
  • The Property does not appraise – Part of the loan process is the completion of an appraisal. A licensed appraiser’s job is to be sure that the property has enough value to support the loan as collateral.  There is not a lot that can be done to influence the appraisal, but there are a few tricks that can help.  If a buyer makes a low offer and then later accepts a higher counter from the seller, the contract should be re-written with the actual sales price on the front page assuring that the appraiser is aware of expectations for price.  The listing agent should pay attention to the appraiser assigned to the file.  Sometimes, an “outside” appraiser is assigned who may not be familiar with values in the area.  If the appraiser is from an office more than 20-30 miles away, the seller can refuse the appointment and request that the lender assign someone else.  Lenders won’t always honor these requests, but the effort should be made.
  • Problems with the title – At the closing, the seller signs over the deed to the home, but only if the deed is free and clear of liens.  There are a number of lien defects that can be found.  Maybe parents deeded the house to children incorrectly before they passed and now the deed must be cleared through probate.  Maybe there is an unpaid tax lien on the deed.  Maybe there is an easement that no one realized was there.  Maybe the seller got a loan to buy a vacation home and didn’t realize the current home was attached to the lien.  While not every lien defect can be pre-determined, a good agent will interview the seller and try to uncover possible issues and clear them before the sale.
  • Buyer is not prepared for hurdles and backs out – It is very important that a buyer understand all the hurdles they must go through to get to the closing table. The lender may ask for documents to further verify income, employment, etc.  The home inspection may turn up issues that must be negotiated.  The appraisal may be delayed, or there may be a title issue that takes time to clear.  An experienced agent will make a buyer aware of possible pitfalls.  I used to tell my buyers this:  “I’m going to sound a bit like a Debbie Downer right now because I’m going to make sure you are aware of all the things that could go wrong during this process. I would rather get to the closing with no issues and have you happy that things were much easier than you expected than to tell you everything’s going to be easy and have you upset at the closing because we had to work through a few issues.  Either way, I’m here to guide you and help you work through any of these issues that may come up”.  A prepared buyer is less likely to terminate the deal at the first sign of trouble.
  • Missed deadlines – There are many dates on the contract that must be met. The buyer commits to having a home inspection within a certain # of days.  If the buyer asks for repairs, the seller must respond in a certain # of days.  The contract states the deadline for the buyer to make loan application and to close.  Good agents make deadlines sacred.  They watch them constantly and make sure they are met, or make sure they secure a written extension if they cannot be met.
  • Too much negotiation is done verbally – An experienced agent knows to GET EVERYTHING IN WRITING. All too often, the seller tells the buyer they’ll take care of something, or the listing agent tells the buyer’s agent that the seller is taking care of something only to get to the closing and find out it wasn’t done, or it wasn’t done as agreed.  ANY time a promise is made, someone should be writing an addendum and getting it signed so that all parties are bound to a written agreement.

Experienced, top-producing agents keep detailed checklists to be sure that no steps are missed and that all deadlines are met.  They clarify agreements in writing and they review all documents for possible issues up front.  A good agent doesn’t write an offer unless they are pretty sure it will close.  They know how to do the homework up front to help get their buyers get to the goal line.  Have any questions?  Call your favorite RE/MAX agent – we’ve done this a million times.


Escalation Clauses: A Primer for Buyers and Sellers


Summer 2020 is definitely shaping up to be a HOT market.
  Sellers are routinely experiencing multiple offers within the first day or two on the market.  Buyers are writing full price offers and losing out to higher offers.  With this frantic pace and multiple offers, we have seen a rise in the use of the escalation clause.  Here’s how it works:


A buyer writes an offer for $100,000 and adds an escalation clause that basically says, “If seller receives competing offers, buyer increases their offer by an amount necessary to give the seller a net sale price that is $1,000 above the net sale price of any competing offer not to exceed $115,000”


Essentially, the buyer will beat any competing offer by $1,000 as long as they don’t have to go over $115,000.


Let’s take a look at the pro’s and con’s of this strategy for both buyers and sellers:


The benefit for a buyer is they pay the lower price if there are no competing offers, but still have the opportunity to beat a competing offer if one exists.  The down-side of an escalation clause for the buyer is that it let’s the seller know the top dollar they are willing to pay ($115,000 in this example).


For sellers, an escalation clause can push the sales price up without having to waste time going back and forth between the competing buyers.  Conversely, if a seller accepts an escalation clause from one buyer, they may never know if the competing buyer would have gone higher as well.  Also, if a seller accepts a higher offer and the house does not appraise for the agreed price, the seller may have missed the opportunity to sell to a stronger buyer at a lower but possibly better price.


We agree it can be confusing.  Just be sure if you are considering an escalation clause, you get the advice of an experienced agent who understands the pro’s and con’s.  RE/MAX Perrett Associates’ agents use a pre-written clause that has been reviewed by an attorney and addresses otherwise unforeseen loopholes.


 and you want to be sure you know what you’re doing.  If you have any questions, reach out, we’re happy to help.

Working on Your Data Base


Hey guys, for today's installment of "What should I be doing while I'm waiting to go back to work?", we are going to talk about a Realtor's gold mine and that is a database.  Successful agents have a few things in common and one of those things is a database.  All successful agents have a complete database that they use to track their customers and clients and their business. 

If you already have a database, don't stop reading quite yet: I'm going to talk to you first.  If you've already got a database in place, then as yourself, "What am I doing with it right now?". Are you reaching out personally to your top 50 clients asking them how they are doing, how things are going, are they on quarantine, are they essential, do they need some grown-up time, would they love to video chat with you?"

The thing to ask yourself right now is "What kind of an agent am I going to to be?" Are you going to be that agent that is reaching out, helping, giving advice and caring, or are you going to be that agent who says, "Sorry, I'm off work for the next few weeks, I'll talk to you when I get back?"

Okay, now for those of you who do not have a complete database: Get busy.  It's data entry, guys.  Get your phone and go to LeadStreet and start manually entering all the contacts from your phone into LeadStreet.  Save yourself a bunch of time and categorize them as you enter them. Categorize them as past client, friends and family, soccer moms, Christmas card, etc.  If you have a teenager at home dying of boredom, this is a great job for them.  For you techies out there, download your contacts from Google into a CSV file and upload them to LeadStreet.

Once you get that database complete, here's an idea:  add additional contacts for the area you want to farm.  Just go to the tax records, enter the street you're interested in and start entering those people in your database categorizing them as a specific farm.

When your database is complete, go back to the beginning of this entry and ask yourself, "What am I going to do next?"  Reach out, get in touch, show your clients and friends and family that  you care.  Start a private Facebook group for a certain demographic like Ashley Reniger's Momfit group.  this is the timem to be creative.  Let's ask ourselves every day what can I do in this market that no one else is doing that can set me apart?  How can I encourage buyers and sellers to move forward or at least be ready when this is over?  Once you have the answers to those questions, let's share...let's keep each other busy and motivated.

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