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Aug 16

Should I Offer Short Term Rentals? A Property Manager's Guide

Short Term Rentals Management

Many homeowners with more than one home - and rental agencies with an extra property or two - often find their surplus buildings difficult to rent, sell, or otherwise make use of. A given property may, for a variety of reasons, be unfit for long term rentals. However, many property managers are finding that short-term rentals are an ideal solution for getting a substantial return on a property that defies other forms of monetization.

If you have a property that you think would be ideal to rent short term as a vacation space or as a B&B, here are the seven steps to develop your own short term rental (STR) management business.

Check Your Local Laws

Some areas have zoning laws that prohibit offering portions of a house for short-term rentals. Before you get too far along in the process, make sure you are setting up your STR in an area where it is legal to do so.

Evaluate the Risk Factors

It would be wise to speak to a real estate agent about the profitability of setting up your STR in a given neighborhood. Find out what tax implications apply. After you determine what expenses you will incur, decide whether or not you can raise the property to a level of luxury for which you can charge enough to make the venture worthwhile.

Consider a Triplex Conversion

A house that can be converted to a triplex is generally ideal for short term rentals. You want to be able to create a home-like space for your guests with all the amenities, and a triplex is usually best for this purpose.

Inhabit One Floor

Like a B&B or a Hotel, your STR will need on-site management to run properly. This is part of the reason why a triplex is best — you want to be able to manage on a continual basis without being absent and without being right on top of your guests.

Prepare the Space

You will need to completely furnish the space with refrigerators, quality furniture and a washer/dryer. You will also need to set it up in such a way that gives a welcoming impression that is still businesslike. Assemble a welcome packet with information on the amenities you offer, any interesting facts about the building, as well as information about local attractions.

Advertise Via the Rental Marketplace

Have your property listed in as many vacation home rental sites as possible. For security reasons and convenience, it is best to accept payment through a portal service. The vacation home marketplace makes it easy to set up a payment portal. In most cases, you will never handle cash, which is ideal. Knowing that your guests don’t assume you’re holding a large cash-box makes it much easier to provide service with a smile.

Grow Your Business

After a while, if your business is going well, you should be able to invest in a second triplex and expand your enterprise. By this time you should know enough about running a short-term rental business that hiring and training a manager for your second building will be well within your capabilities.

A brief guide to setting up your short term rental business. These are the seven critical steps to getting started.
Jul 25

4 Top Trends To Keep An Eye On In Real Estate Marketing

Trend To Keep An Eye On: Virtual Reality and 3-D Listings

Here is a list of some of the vogue marketing strategies:

Virtual Reality and 3-D Listings

Visual concepts often present a better opportunity to intrigue clients. Seventy-three percent of homeowners prefer listing with Realtors who offer to create a video. A 3-D tour is beneficial to both the buyer and the seller. For the buyer, it provides a platform to view more houses in a short time span. It also eliminates the tedious part of moving from one house to another.

For a seller, it prevents one from vacating the premises whenever a potential buyer wants to view the house. It also offers a sense of security for those offended by people snooping around the house.

On a comparison scale, 3-D listings offer a comprehensive approach compared to the conventional way of using photos.

Responsive Websites

Realtor websites are a better way to provide information to clients concerning listings. However, with the current trend, most people opt to browse online using their phones. It is advisable to ensure that website interfaces comply with mobile devices. According to research, about 88 percent of customers searching for a local business call within the first 24 hours.

Live Chat

Clients prefer websites where they readily can get correspondence on products. Online live chats provide a platform to customers where they can get more information regarding the listings. Study shows that 63 percent of consumers are highly likely to refer to a site offering online chats.

Social Media

For quite some time, Facebook has been in the limelight in advertising content. However, those days are long gone. Nowadays, to boost the visibility of social media content, one has to invest in ad budgets. Google ads is an example.

For a successful and smooth run, be sure to keep up to date with the latest tricks in real estate marketing

Real estate is currently revolutionizing the housing industry globally. More people are investing heavily in the venture. In the U.S., 37% of homes were purchased solely for investment purposes. However, a commonly overlooked phenomenon is the marketing strategy. Proper marketing is critical in ensuring the success of the business. It is vital to understand marketing trends before investing time and money.
Jun 9

Creative Ways To Monetize Your Real Estate Website

website as realtor income source

Today's market is highly competitive, and one needs a real estate website to be able to compete fairly in it. When the idea was new, posting property listings was a breakthrough but this is not enough anymore. Because of the fickle nature of real estate, you could haul in big sums one month and make nothing or even some losses in other months. It is necessary to have different sources of income and one of these methods is your website. There are different methods and opportunities to make money through your website, and you can make use of the following creative ways for that.

Contemplate consulting services

If you have been in the industry for a long time and have a good experience, you can consider selling your time to educate relatively new people. You can add the availability of this service to your website by including a tab or a section that advertises it.

If you are going to try consulting, you have to do it in consideration of your own business. For example, avoid local consultations so that you do not give juice to the competition. Other people in other markets are better targeted for this.

Sell ad space

A good place to sell advertisements is a real estate website. You can pitch your website as an advertising platform to different businesses. Most of which might work are home services, furniture, and other things related to buying or selling a home.

You can decide to receive payment according to a flat rate per month or receive increasing rates as the number of visitors to your website increases. For the first option, you are assured of payment no matter what happens. For the second option, you have the satisfaction of increased compensation according to your growth.

Use email lists

You can use very ethical means to build email lists by adding a form on your website. Taking the time and energy to build this will offer flexibility in the future and provide for different options. This list can be used to develop real estate leads.

If you have a considerable size of traffic then building a mailing list will be easier but it is hard work. People need a reason to give away their information.

Try premium content

With some ingenuity, generate premium content for your website alongside free content and make it regular. It can develop membership and pay well. People will pay for access to special posts and webinars.

If you are new to the industry or want a fresh direction or some updates, a good place to start looking is Agent BizzUp. Here you can find all sorts of services ranging from real estate website building and design to hosting and marketing. You will be starting from the perfect platform and be well equipped with all the necessary tools to move in the right direction and make great progress.

For a real estate agent, it is necessary to have different sources of income through creative ways to monetize your real estate website.

Using Your Website To Build Your Real Estate Brand

real estate website build brand

Using Your Website to Build Your Real Estate Brand

If you have a real estate brand, you need to have an online presence. From real estate review websites to home buyers and sellers seeking real estate services in your area, the internet is a hub of communication between agents and clients. Building an optimized website is the first step toward taking control of your online brand, protecting your reputation and connecting with new local clients.

The Importance of a Real Estate Website

The primary reason to have a real estate website is that today’s clients begin their search for homes online. Your website differentiates you as a professional and allows you to direct clients to and from your property listings. A real estate website should contain useful content for potential clients, including listings and market information, as well as an accessible contact portal.

List Syndication

When it comes to selling real estate, visibility is key. Make your properties more visible by cross-posting them to multiple listing websites, increasing the likelihood that they will be seen by the right potential buyers. This strategy is known as list syndication, and it allows you to reach clients no matter which online platform they prefer.

Getting Noticed

Most real estate clients begin their quest to find a real estate professional with a local search. Search engines index locally targeted businesses according to keywords, authority and proximity to the user. You can boost your rankings in these results by having high-quality content on your website that communicates your expertise in your local market and features targeted keywords used organically. This means finding out the terms your clients are using to search for real estate information and using them naturally on your social media, blog and webpages.

The First Impression

Most people come to a decision about working with a brand within 6 to 10 seconds of landing on its website. Your website should be designed to hold the attention of your visitors and help convert them into clients through seamless navigation, consistent branding, valuable online services, and an intuitive contact form. Agent BizzUp can help you accomplish these goals through marketing assistance and streamlined web design. Your website is your online platform, and a great website grabs the potential client’s attention and establishes you as an expert in your field.

The real estate market is competitive, but you can get ahead of the competition in your area with a locally targeted website and by using these tips to maximize conversions.
May 25

Developers Are Learning How To Invest In Local Cities While Developing Real Estate Opportunities There

Developing Real Estate Opportunities

It's Not Where You're From - It's Where You're At

In today's real estate marketplace, it is extremely important to understand the places that potential clients come from. What do they want to see in the communities in which they choose to live?  It may be greater access to green grocers, schools, the arts, or greener and cleaner parks. The list can go on and on.

Improving the community is of particular importance for clients who may want to move to an urban area or stay in their present urban area. Realtors need to be aware that some markets lack access to better amenities due to location.

Agent BizzUp understands what the needs of the real estate professional are. That's how great relationships are created, and that's how great relationships last. The same principle is salient in the relationship between the realtor and his or her client. The website that the realtor puts forward is critical to how they will build their web presence. Realtors should let the clients know that community investment is an important feature of their business. In turn, it is an important feature of the listings that are shown to clients. 

Community Investment

Clients may actually question this aspect of a potential purchase. Realtors should be prepared for questions from their clients regarding the developers' community investment. This may be part and parcel of their decision to purchase a particular property, condo, or cooperative apartment. 

One Story of a Baltimore, MD Developers Community Investment

There were many abandoned homes in Oliver due to poverty, drugs and all of the things that go along with those blights. However, this developer saw the purchase price of his homes increase from $140,000 to $210,000 in the space of a few years. Now residents are saying they feel good about the changes they see.

Many people are making the decision to return to Oliver. There is more communication between the police force and the community residents due to social interactions (including happy hours for adult residents of the area and officers) fostered by the development corporation. The head of the company has hired the person he sold his first home to as a consultant on what deals are in the best interest of Oliver.

Realtors Be Aware of Importance of Community Investment.
Nov 29

Introducing Our New Sophisticated Design Theme With Video Background Header!

sophisticated theme

This new theme is sleek and sophisticated. It takes advantage of modern technologies to provide an ultra-modern and highly customizable look and feel.

This is the first theme in our new Designer series. Themes in this series include video background header and jumbo image header options. For a bolder landing page, you can now also make the header on your home page different than the rest of your website.

This new theme is sleek and sophisticated. It takes advantage of modern technologies to provide an ultra-modern and highly customizable look and feel.
Sep 10

Whose Ready To Blog? Built-in Blogging Comes To Agent BizzUp

new blogging platform

Blogging has become an absolute marketing must-do to drive traffic, improve your SEO and credibility and, ultimately, increase your leads. In fact, we’ve found that Agent BizzUp clients who blog bring in more leads than those who don’t. For many years, our members have used third-party blogging platforms for their blog and simply hyperlink their Agent BizzUp website to their blog. But this created a scenario that didn't help much with SEO and made it difficult to manage their blog in a completely different system.

That’s why we're very happy to announce that blogging for your Agent BizzUp website just got super easy thanks to our new built-in blog. It’s streamlined and easy to use while giving you all the tools to create and publish great content and boost your traffic and sales. And because our new built-in blogging platform utilizes Wordpress, many of our members will already be familiar with parts of the interface.

Seamless integration

Since your blog is built directly into your website, the layout and style fits perfectly with the rest of your website design and content. And you don’t have to deal with managing multiple domain names and login details for your website and blog, as all management is accessible in our Account Control Panel.

We're excited about this new feature as it help us take another step further in accomplishing our goal - to provide real estate professionals with an inexpensive, fun and easy to use platform to manage their entire web presence (not just their website). 

We're very happy to announce that blogging for your Agent BizzUp website just got super easy thanks to our new built-in blog.
Jul 29

Building Your Brand Blog By Blog

blog by blog

When you are writing a blog, it's important to understand the reasons why people are visiting your blog in the first place. When you are a Realtor, clients are going to your blog to learn more about real estate trends, options for mortgages in their area, and they are looking to see more about the type of person that you are. With the competitiveness of the real estate market, it's important to shape your blog so that you stand out among the rest.

Showcase Your Expertise

The best place to talk about what you know is on your blog. If you have expertise in a certain area, say you are very familiar with short sales, you should be creating posts that discuss this topic. You should be showing your passion for the field, and while you want to keep your posts light, they should also contain plenty of information for your potential clients to think about.

Talk About Real Estate Trends in Your Area

People want to know about the real estate trends in areas they are looking to buy or sell. Do your research, and come up with blog posts that discuss current trends for your real estate market. While you can compare the trends nationwide vs. those in your area, try to keep your information as local as possible. People want to know that you understand the local market, and they are more likely to hire you as a Realtor if they have confidence that you have direct knowledge about the local area.

Write a Few Posts About Your Personal Interests

Writing about your personal life can be a sticky situation for some people. Blog posts that discuss your personal interests don't have to include the most intimate details of your life. If you want to talk about your children, fine, but you don't have to put up their names, pictures, or ages on your blog. You can talk about your personal interests without going too deep into the discussion. Let potential clients know that you are a real person, what you enjoy in your spare time, and what you love about the area.

As you work on building up your brand through your blog, remember that customers want to read content that is either informative or entertaining. You can keep posts light by keeping out specific details, but make sure you are always showcasing your strengths as a Realtor.

How to shape your blog, allow customers to get to know the real you, provide solid real estate advice, and talk about current trends. A mix of personal/advice/trends.
Jun 6

How The Exodus Of Millennial Parents To The Suburbs Will Shape The Market In 2016

parents move out

A generation that has long since been unfairly labeled as immature and dependent by their elders, Millennials are certainly not portrayed as the most family-oriented demographic. Indeed, as a generation that is putting off things such as starting a family or even moving out of the home, Millennials are considered the proverbial late bloomers in the adult world at large. Nevertheless, although it may not seem like a priority, most Millennials are seeking to provide the same stable upbringing for their children in terms of school districts and neighborhoods as their parents did for them. However, given that this generation seems to be waiting much longer to have children, they are also seeking the very best in terms of housing and school district when it comes to raising their future offspring. This will obviously affect the real estate market in a number of ways. 

The Exodus 

In short, most Millennials do plan to have a family at some point. Although city living is all the rage among this age group, this is only because they are enjoying their lives before they have children. Most Millennials plan to have families and plan to raise them in a suburban setting. In fact, according to a Census study conducted in 2015, 529,000 Americans aged 25-29 moved from the cities out to the suburbs in 2014 with only 426,000 moving in the other direction. Moreover, these trends were even more surprising for younger Millennials. 721,000 moved out of the city, compared to a mere 554,000 who moved in. These numbers are said to have remained the same with a trend towards growth in 2015. In fact, one survey asserted that 6 out of 10 plan to live in the suburbs just 5 years from now. 

What does this Mean? 

In a nutshell, it seems that there will soon be a lot more real estate available for people to rent or purchase in cities as Millennials will be making their way towards the suburbs. Such a move would likely create a high demand for suburban real estate and raise property values. This could also mean that older generations may begin to venture inward in an effort to find some escape from the Millennial hoopla, or maybe, older and younger generations will finally learn to live in harmony. Only time will tell for sure. 

Millennials, though, not portrayed as the most family-oriented demographic, are seeking to provide the same stable upbringing for their children in terms of school districts and neighborhoods as their parents did for them. But how will their move to the suburbs affect the real estate market.
Apr 1

Five Tips For Online Real Estate Marketing

Tips For Online Real Estate Marketing

As more home buyers and sellers take to online listings and social media, a successful online marketing campaign is more important for real estate professionals now than it ever has been.

Agent BizzUp specializes in creating comprehensive online campaigns that build your brand and generate new leads every day. Read on for the top five online real estate marketing strategies that can generate more business for you.

Social Media

Working with a professional marketing service like Agent BizzUp to build your web presence while simultaneously engaging social media is the key to reaching a wider audience. Metrics on social media platforms such as Facebook give you unique insight into your target audience, from demographic information to their online habits.

By engaging with potential clients on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube, you can improve your brand recognition and focus on advertising to those who are already active in the housing market.

Digital Listings

Digital listings are a great way to turn visitors to your website into clients. Home buyers and apartment hunters are increasingly drawn to online property listings. From video walkthroughs to a gallery of high-quality photos, digital listings help potential buyers envision themselves in the properties you list and increase the likelihood that they will want to visit in person.

Web Design

Your website should be a portal to all of the services you offer. Research shows that consumers decide whether to engage with a brand within seconds of landing on the homepage, so make every second count with a streamlined website that sells.

Agent BizzUp will work with you to create a website that showcases your properties, makes key information immediately accessible, and encourages visitors to take that next step to engage with you through compelling calls to action.

Outreach

Once you have generated new leads through your active social media profiles and streamlined website, you should follow up with leads through email and other outreach strategies. Online seminars are a great way to reach out to potential buyers in your area who have already expressed interest in a new home.

Contact Management

Getting new leads is only part of the equation for a successful online marketing strategy. Agent BizzUp's Contact Manager service helps you keep track of all of your contacts, new and old. This helps you grow existing relationships while forming new ones, and makes you even more accessible to potential clients.

Each of these online marketing strategies is designed to promote your brand in a more efficient way. Contact Agent BizzUp today for professional guidance and services that reduce the amount of effort you have to put into promoting your real estate business while maximizing your conversion rates.

In this article, we discuss five practical strategies for getting the word out there about a real estate professional's services. From managing relevant social media pages to creating video walkthroughs of listings that help buyers visualize themselves in a property.
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