The Time to Totally Embrace Tech is Now

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Investors are feeling bullish on real estate technology, a sentiment that could produce new opportunities in the near future.

MetaProp NYC, a real estate technology accelerator, recently polled investors and startup founders on the state of the industry, and where they see it going in 2016 and beyond. The results of the “Global Real Estate Tech Confidence Index” show that investors are confident about the state of the real estate technology market. On a 1-10 scale, investors rated their confidence in the industry a 9.1.

“We found that 90 percent of investors intend to make either the same amount of investments as last year or more in 2016,” the researchers explained. “Founders and investors expect that the real estate tech market will grow more competitive during 2016, with more startups chasing a larger pool of venture capital funding.”

Luckily, real estate agents don’t have to wait for great apps. There are already plenty available. If you can’t wait for the latest investments to hit the market, here are a few of the best real estate apps available now:

Expensify
When you’re working for a brokerage, keeping track of all your expenses can be difficult. This app will keep track of all your receipts for you, which can help you stay more organized and free up space on your desk or in your drawers. If you’re tracking your expenses, consider Expensify or a similar service to make sure you’re staying on top of your receipts.

Periscope
Have you ever hosted a virtual open house? If not, you might want to look into downloading Periscope and trying one out. Leads that are moving long distances or have busy schedules would likely take advantage of virtual tours if you offer them. You can also use apps like Periscope for Q&A sessions or to stream local events.

Homekeepr
Maintaining relationships with past clients is important, which is why apps like Homekeepr can help. This service sends maintenance reminders to real estate agents’ past clients. This is a great excuse to keep in touch and it’s helpful for homeowners.

SignEasy
You no longer need to meet someone in person to drop off documents to be signed. Virtual signatures are as binding as ink and much easier to get a hold of. In addition, like Expensify, this app can help real estate agents save space and stay more organized by removing the need for piles of papers.

There are plenty of apps available for real estate agents, and new ones waiting around the corner. These can help you stay organized, reach new leads and maintain strong relationships with past clients. The suite of services available to real estate agents now – along with the fact that investors are confident more are on the way – is great for tech-savvy real estate professionals whose most valuable lead generation tools are their cellphones.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click www.hmsnational.com.

Cincinnati Fall Festivals

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Happy First Day of Fall!

In honor of this day,  HUFF Realty wanted to provide a comprehensive list of all the best corn mazes, pumpkin patches and other fun activities to do this fall! 

 

CORN MAZES, PUMPKIN PATCHES, AND FUN ON THE FARM:

Burwinkel Farms – Open all of October. During the month of September, our farm in Ross transitions from a produce market into an October Fall Extravaganza. With over 20+ varieties of locally grown apples, as well as all your fall decorating needs, Burwinkel Farms is the perfect place to take your family for corn stalks, gourds and pumpkins of all sorts, Indian corn, apple cider, and mums. Our farm offers a variety of activities for all ages including a corn maze, scavenger hunt, straw tunnel, corn pool, and weekend hayrides to a pick a pumpkin from the patch.

Country Pumpkins: Alpine Hills Dairy Farm, Sept. 10 – Oct. 31, 2016

Fall on the Farm: Blooms and Berries Farm Market, Sept. 19 through Oct. 31, 2016

Fall Farm Days:  Bonnybrook Farms, Saturdays and Sundays – October 1-30, 2016

Irons Fruit Farm – corn maze, hay ride to pumpkin patch, pumpkins, etc.; weekends only (weekends in Oct.)

Niederman Family Farm’s Fall Festival –  Sept. 23 to Oct. 30, 2016

Neltner’s Farm and Greenhouses Fall Fest: October 1-30, 2016; Enjoy horse-drawn wagon rides, an expansive corn maze, pick-your-own pumpkin patch, the petting zoo, pony rides, homemade food and ice cream, our farm shop, crafters, pottery, face-painting, seasonal apples, folk art, live music, a wonderful variety of demonstrations and a barrel train! Weekend admission is $5 (ages 3 and up) with weekend hours of 10 AM-6 PM, Weekend admission includes horse drawn wagon ride to the pumpkin patch, corn maze, petting zoo, and acres to roam; Weekday admission is free and they’re open 9 AM-6 PM with farm shop, pumpkin patch, maze, & petting zoo open.

Pumpkin Days on the Farm, Benton Farm, October 14-16, 2016

Shaw’s Fall Festival Weekend: Shaw Farms, weekends from Sept. 17 – October 31, 2016; weather permitting

 

OCTOBER THINGS TO DO IN CINCINNATI:

October 1 and 2: Sunflower Festival at Gorman Heritage Farm

October 1: Spooky Pooch in Glendale, 11am – 5pm; activities for dogs and their owners; including Spookiest Pooch contest, Spooky Pooch Parade, and more

October 7-9: Operation Pumpkin in Hamilton; live music, food, activities, crafts, and more

October 7-9: Kentucky Wool Festival

October 8 and 9: Ohio Sauerkraut Festival in Waynesville

October 15: Trunk R’ Treat Fall Festival , 2:30-5:30; A classic car show, kids in costumes, music, games and lots of candy combine for this annual event

October 15 and 16: Minges and Weber Family Pumpkin Festival

October 16: Make it a Fabulous Fall Funday! at the Taft Museum’s 3rd Sunday Funday; 1-4pm at the Taft Museum of Art

October 16: Celebrate cooler weather, changing leaves and the harvest season at Findlay Market’s annual Fall Food Festival, 10am to 4pm

October 21 and 22: Magic Halloween Hikes: Caldwell Nature Preserve, reservations required

October 29-30: Enjoy Fall Fest Weekend at Washington Park

October 22: Halloween Walk in the Woods, Blue Ash

October 26: Fright Night Flicks – an evening of classic horror double-features in Washington Park; Scooby Doo: Nowhere to Hyde – Rated G: 7:30-8p plus The Ring – Rated PG-13:  8p-9:55p

October 29: Nature at Night Pumpkin Hike at Farbach-Werner Nature Preserve, 7-8pm

 

FALL AND HALLOWEEN RELATED “THINGS TO DO”:

Halloween Nights at Parky’s Farm: Dress your best and bring out your little ghouls and goblins, princesses and superheroes to a one-of-a-kind, family-friendly Halloween party. 2016 dates have not been published yet.

Jack O’Lantern Junction: EnterTRAINment Junction. Sept. 24 through Oct. 31, 2016

HallZOOween at the Cincinnati Zoo: “always hairy, never scary”; weekends in October

Halloween Haunt at Kings Island:   Fridays and Saturdays Sept. 23 through October 29

Haunted Village (family friendly): Fridays and Saturdays in October, ends October 29

Fall-O-Ween: Coney Island, Oct 8, 9; Oct. 15, 16; Oct. 22,23

 

HAUNTED HOUSES AND OTHER ADULT EVENTS:

Haunted Tours from American Legacy Tours (Cincinnati, Covington, Newport): now through November

Haunted Cincinnati Tours: now through December

Fright Night Flicks: Enjoy a free horror movie on Fridays in October

U.S.S. Nightmare: Built on a retired working steamboat

Mt. Healthy Haunted Hall: Open Sept. 30, 2016 and runs every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday through October 31st.  Friday and Saturday 8pm – 11pm, Sunday 7pm – 9pm.

The Land of Illusion Haunted Scream Park: Sept. 2- Oct. 30 (Fridays and Saturdays in Sept. and Oct., Sundays in October)

The Dent Schoolhouse Haunted House: Sept. 9 through end of Nov. 5; see site for dates

The Haunted Farm House at Benton Farm: October dates to be announced

The Wilmington Haunted Hollow Ride: Sept. 17 thru Oct. 29 (Fridays and Saturdays)

 

 

Buyer Tools You Need

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Did you know there are over 13,500 listings in the tristate area at this very moment? That many listings can make searching for a home overwhelming because of all of the options. But don’t fear! HUFF Realty has a few awesome tools to help you in your search for the perfect home!

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-9-21-21-amSearch for your home on your desktop!

HUFF.com contains more local inventory and up-to-date information about homes for sale than many of the national sites you may be using currently.  Search by location, price, and more using our powerful desktop search tool and browse thousands of homes, flip through photos, and save your favorites.

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-9-25-09-amDownload the HUFF app!

Shop for homes on the go with our free HUFF mobile app and access virtually every home within the tristate area. The HUFF app offers unique tools that allow you to calculate commute times, share listings with your friends, draw around areas you want to search in, and use your smart phone or tablet’s GPS to instantly find homes nearby.

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-9-23-05-am Find available homes in your desired area!

Register for your free Property Watch account and keep all your home search information in one place.  View all area properties listed for sale, save searches and favorites, get automatic email alerts as soon as properties hit the market and more!

Whether you’re a first time buyer or building your dream home, we’ll help you through the entire home buying experience.  Contact your local HUFF agent today or visit HUFF.com.

 

4 tips for starting your real estate career off right

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Working as a real estate agent isn’t like many other jobs, and people new to the role will need help kicking off their careers.

If you’re one of those individuals who is just starting out in real estate, don’t worry. This job requires hard work, but it’s also exciting and rewarding. To ensure success, though, there are a number of habits that new real estate agents should adopt. These will help you improve your planning and lead generation. If you’re interested in getting your real estate career started off the right way, you may want to consider taking up some of these habits:

  1. Block out lead generation time
    One way to ensure lead generation success is to block out time every day solely for that purpose. Don’t let anything break your lead generation bubble each day. This way, you can make sure you produce plenty of leads each day. Inman suggested scheduling this block each morning. This way you get it out of the way, and have the rest of the day to leverage your new leads.
  2. Be quick to communicate 
    Buying or selling a home can be a long, and sometimes complicated, process. One thing your clients definitely need is speedy communication. Being quick to respond shows your clients that you care, and earns their trust that you’ll be there when they need you. Once you are on the phone with your clients, be sure to take time to speak with them. Really investing time in their concerns will strengthen your relationships with clients and help you understand the homebuying and selling processes from their perspective better.
  3. Hone in on open houses
    Early on in your real estate career, it will help to set up as many open houses as you can, according to Inman. One every weekend for at least two months – or even three or four – could set you up with a significant network of leads to begin working through. Open houses are a great way to meet prospective Buyers who may be planning to get into the real estate market, but haven’t taken the next step of enlisting the help of a real estate professional.
  4. Take advantage of tech tools
    Technology exists to make our lives easier, so why not use it to simplify your day-to-day real estate plan? There are plenty of apps out there that simplify lead generation, budgeting, planning and marketing, among other tasks. Taking advantage of available tech will help you cut costs, make processes more efficient and stay on top of your real estate business.

Starting out in real estate can be daunting, but adopting the habits above will help you get your career going more quickly. By generating leads and building a positive reputation as you’re starting out, you’ll set yourself up for long term success.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click www.hmsnational.com.

5 Tasks to Help Sell Your Home

When you decide to sell your home, it’s really no longer your home; it’s a house, a commodity for sale. It’s competing with the other houses in your neighborhood, and if you want the best price, you need to show it in its best light.

 5 Tasks to Help Sell Your Home 

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1. Stage the yard  

Staging the home on the outside helps sell the inside.  Before a buyer steps foot through the front door, he/she has a lasting impression of your property based on the short walk from the car to the door.

A  welcoming porch with a freshly painted front door invites the buyers inside as they start envisioning living in the home.  Be sure to remove weeds, rake leaves and trim hedges – skip the major projects unless absolutely necessary.

2. Clean, clean, clean

There isn’t enough emphasis on the power of a good cleaning job – inside and out.  Start outside after staging the yard by pressure washing vinyl or wood siding and cleaning the windows.

Buyers like move-in condition and will pay more for it.  Inside the home, homeowners need to get into every corner and crevice to remove dust, grime, and dirt.  Concentrate on the kitchen and bathrooms, where the buyer will be most impressed.   A clean home will give potential buyers the impression the home has been well maintained and cared for.

3.  Remodel or upgrade

Create a fresh new look around the home at minimal cost with new trim (door and window casings, baseboard, crown molding), new paint and flooring.

Upgrading items around the house such as kitchen appliances, fixtures (lights, faucets, etc.) will make the home look newer which helps the home sell faster.

Major upgrades such as replacing kitchens and bathrooms should only be considered if necessary. Although major remodeling will help sell the home faster, it could take time for the upgrades to be completed.

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4.  Declutter and stage the home

The end result in staging and decluttering  a home is to make it look bigger, brighter and cleaner in order to accentuate the positive aspects of each room.

In order to achieve this all the “little stuff” sellers have around their home, including collectibles and photos should be put away.  Excess furniture should be stored away so the potential buyer can visualize how they will be able to use the space and rooms.  The home should be staged to look like a model home: cozy, comfortable, colorful and inviting.

5.  Use professional photography 

Photos are the curb appeal of the digital age with 90% of buyers doing their home shopping online. Hiring a professional photographer is recommended – they know how to make something ordinary look spectacular and to make a space appear bigger.  Their stunning, high-definition images will be seen on the MLS and consumer real estate portals – all of which are designed to get buyers to fall in love and buy a home.  High quality photos are a must to market your property!

To learn more about what it will take to get your home on the market contact your local HUFF agent or visit HUFF.com.

 

 

This Covington Building Is The Poster Child For Historic Preservation & Urban Development

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SEPTEMBER 02, 2016

by  PHILLIP ARMSTRONG

There’s a massive building located on the corner of 4th Street and Scott Boulevard in Covington. And when I say “massive,” that’s exactly what I mean. Soon, it’ll be the new hot spot for urban living south of the Ohio River.

Let us introduce to Boone Block

Built in 1872, the building has seen a multitude of changes within its lifetime; from legal offices to tenement housing to years of straight up vacancy, the Boone Block has lived a long life. The developer, Orleans Development, respected the building’s history by repurposing elements of the original structure into the modern redesign. The units seamlessly blend old features of the building (exposed brick, original fireplaces, reclaimed wood and metal, old tubs and sinks, and original wooden doors) with modern amenities to create a unique living experience.

The end result is absolutely stunning.

DISTINCTLY BOONE BLOCK

  • The Boone Block comprises 9 townhomes, each with 3 floors of exposed brick, drywall, and repurposed old doors
  • Each unit has 2 full bathrooms, including a reclaimed claw-foot tub on the 2nd floor, and a half bathroom at ground level
  • There’s built-in shelving that rises from the 1st floor kitchen to the 2nd floor living area
  • There’s a garage that opens directly into the kitchen and it can be easily converted into additional “flex” space for entertaining or a studio/workspace if needed
  • Behind the building is a common area courtyard for residents to enjoy
  • A set of French doors leads to a balcony on the 2nd floor that overlooks the courtyard.
  • Each floor has 12- to 14-foot ceilings (depending on the floor)
  • It has herringbone patterned flooring on the 2nd floor
  • A rare piece of a mural by world-renowned artists, The London Police, is painted on the building’s northern side. The artists are scheduled to return this fall to flesh out the rest of the mural and make Boone Block an original work of art in addition to a preservation success story.

Thinking of living in the Boone Block? Head to the website to learn more.

 Brought to you by  Cincinnati Refined.