Customer service beyond customer service from a 9-5 Escrow Company

Best Santa Clarita Escrow

This article is about Escrow Services – FYI!

The breakdown is as follows. When you are dealing with a banker,  you are expecting them to only communicate with you between the hours of 9a-5p.

They are not going to give you their cellular phone number and they will not be returning emails during the week.

The problem with this is that there are “bankers” that will deal with you after business hours, on weekends and on holidays.

Escrow Officers and Escrow Companies are typically the same as Bankers.

The reason I’m writing this post has to do with one of our real estate transactions where the buyers we are representing need to sign loan documents after hours.

This is a must, but the escrow officer is not around nor answering calls from the agent, who hired her in the first place!

This is typical for the Escrow Industry as it is with Banks.

But, why I do not accept this fact is that we have an escrow officer that is available after hours, on weekends and during holidays.

The only time she is not, is when she is not in cell phone range.

She may hate me for this post, but I’m livid at this point, with the escrow company on the other side of a current real estate transaction.

The buyers are police officers and only have limited time to sign documents.

There are small windows for them to do so and they are not able to due to the escrow officer having the mind of a banker!

Our Lender – he responds to text messages after midnight!

Our Title Officer – as long as he is not surfing – he responds during holidays!

Our Escrow Officer – she is on it all of the time unless she is sleeping!

Who you hitch your wagon to is who you will be compared with.

In real estate, we are only as good as the team we have employed to represent our clients!

Who is my Escrow Officer? Troy Stairs with Escrow Advantage. Call her at 661.284.5111 (I have the number memorized!) Reach her by emailing Tstairs@Escrowadvantage.com

I know she won’t get paid extra for this posting, but she is good, knowledgeable and experienced.

There is no one I would rather have on my side during any real estate dealing!

Search the BEST

Spatial Match Multiple Listing Service Search by Home Junction

Custom home search BEST MLSI wrote this review, not all of it, on a Google Plus Review about Home Junction – I thought I would use our Real Estate Business Blog to expand a bit on some of the points I was making throughout my 5 Star Recommendation:

I have been in real estate since 1998 and at that time, if anyone remembers, the MLS and Search was left up to the “men behind the curtain”, a Wizard of OZ reference to Realtors and Real Estate Agents.

When we bought our first home, we were taken by the agent we chose to represent us. The arrogance and the power each exhibited – was amazing. I’m glad the playing field has leveled a bit with the “transparency” of the online real estate blogs and articles.

A few years later entered the “real estate syndication” websites. Those which take an agent’s listing – first without permission, now with “workaround” agreements between brokerages and boards of Realtors, and publicize it to the masses with more marketing dollars than the agent can imagine, effectively selling the agent’s leads back to them…

There were more than Syndication Websites – Due to the advent of the internet – It was like the wild wild west online. Agents were advertising other agents properties and most were going that way without permission. Then most of the Multiple Listing Service companies came out with agreements regarding syndication and as long as it was being done by a Licensed Agent who was also a “Realtor” in good standing, and as long as the “real listing agent” was shown on the advertisement – they were good to go.

There are several ways for a local real estate agent to “win” against the “large syndication machines” that are, BTW, for the most part, – publicly traded companies…

The power through money is hard for a local real estate agent to compete with. You are only as well known as Google thinks you are. And even they have a way for you to pay to get to the “top of their” search engine.

Don’t neglect the handshake and hug thing that works in business. It’s okay to sit behind a computer and bang away at the keys – but to hand your cards to people, perfect strangers, while you are out – directing them back to your Spatial Match search website – that is going to equate to $$$ in your pipeline.

My most effective weapon is Spatial Match MLS Search by Home Junction. This “out of the box” company and its core groups, part of the development, marketing and implementation side have built a Multiple Listing Service search engine that we are truly proud of and that keeps our clients “loyal” to our real estate team.

The search is sticky. It’s like nothing our clients have ever used. They come back for more. We find the engineers and technologically adapted clients love it a lot. Meaning, they seem to use more of its vast functionality than the other clients who also love it, just not for comps and statistics!

The system updates quickly, it’s easy to use and it has much more depth in it’s functionality than most of the “I’m going to spam the heck out of you” search platforms, that people searching for homes online are beginning to be scared to use.

It only takes a couple of times, when one of our clients is going off of the reservation, searching for real estate listings. They get several phone calls and spammed up the wazoo – just for inquiring about a real estate listing that seemed too good to be true. In the end, after they reached out to me, they found it was too good to be true :(

The links to specific searches is something that “breaks” the mold when it comes to an agent’s search.

Needless to say, but you are also able to embed specific functional maps in your website or blog. You can create more than just a link back to the specific search on the specific page of your website – you can embed that specific search on any page – rendering how you designed it.

You can then send that link to your client that was inquiring about real estate listings meeting that specific criteria.

When they arrive – they see, “Hi Bob – It’s Connor – here is your search!”

Here is “Bob’s Search”….

Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest / Google+ / Twitter – all of these platforms should be used by a Realtor that is trying to break away from the grasp of the “online marketing syndication websites” – With the “Specific Search” linking ability of Spatial Match – sharing specific properties is simple. You can also share any configuration you build on the specific map… BTW – those clicks come back to your website – not anywhere less – This is Super Important for your SEO plan…

I have this search on more of my sites than any other. It’s wonderful and I’m Blessed to have came upon Spatial Match and Home Junction several years ago when they were first getting started.

More – call me – I get nothing for referring them out and talking nice about their platform. If you are in my local market – don’t call me :) – Be safe – Connor with HONOR.

Orange Theory Fitness in Santa Clarita Valley it’s a small world

Orangetheory Fitness Santa ClaritaIt Started…

A few months ago – I was contacted by a person that I had never met – nor whom I thought I would ever meet.

He was a caller who wanted to get information on a Santa Clarita property that was for rent/lease.

I explained to him that we don’t handle those types of properties directly, but I would help him because it’s the right thing to do.

The Return…

I cannot tell you how many times, we have helped people such as he, not expecting anything in return, and had them refer those who wanted to do what we handle directly – Buying or Selling Real Estate.

Having the person we helped, come back to want us to represent them, as a buyer of real estate, happens a lot.

Philosophy – Help enough people get what they want without expectation of anything in return – and you will never be lacking in life!!!

Me Fat…

I have been hard at it and have lost 70 pounds since August 27th of 2015. I was 350 and as of July 16, 2015, today – I am currently 280 pounds.

I have been taking a facial photo every day and full body every 10 days.

One of these days, When I am where I want to be, physically and mentally – I will transcribe from my journal to a Blog that I will build – SCVfit.com and post the daily writings, “pain and suffering” entries, with the photos etc…

I am no where finished – I will get to 230-240 and re-evaluate.

But below, is what I needed….

Off the beaten path…Fitness in Santa Clarita

I wanted to buy Green Iced-Tea, unsweetened of course, from Starbucks. I left my office which is down on The Old Road, in Stevenson Ranch, thinking about where the closest Starbucks would be.

While not the closest, I went to the Starbucks in Granary Square. I exited my vehicle and made a beeline for the entrance.

The Pitch…

A lady asked me if I wanted some information about Orange Theory – there was a table and folks with smiles across their faces…  I said I would be back – went inside Starbucks – ordered and waited.

As soon as the barista completed my order, I headed outside and, being a man of my word, I stopped by the table and said, “You have 30 seconds to sell me…”

Then one of those standing with the Orange Theory fitness shirts said, “Paris911 – you are Paris911?”

My shirt said “Paris911”, being of a LEO background, I thought he was getting cheeky….

It is a real small world…

He then said, “Connor – your name is Connor…”  I was set back on my heels – I did not tell him my name.

He proceeded to tell the young lady about a story when I helped him, several months ago, get connected to obtain a rental property.

I remembered our correspondence and thought to myself, “What a small world – you never know…”

Now, I was at a place that I had been looking for(dreaming about). I wanted to join some type of fitness class, but I did not like the local selection.

It’s not one of these Santa Clarita Fitness Boot Camps…

Drill Instructor Type of Military – belittling, screaming and telling the attendee’s they are worthless…

Too Vain – owners too interested in how “pretty and in shape” they are to pay attention to their clients…

Fitness Camps that Push past “healthy levels” – I have seen this more often than not – watching some of the attendee’s being pushed to the point of needing an ambulance…

What it is….

I wanted a place that had more of a science behind it and that was Brand New. It’s nice starting at a place at the beginning – being one of the “foundational” members. Plus – everyone is new – While I don’t think this is going to be one of those places where starting later will pose an issue, as in the ones mentioned above, New is Nice…

I signed up. I’m all in. It came at a time when the time is not exactly “right”. Everything in my world is not “aligned” and perfect.

But neither was it when I started to actively “rid myself of excess body fat…”

If I have learned one thing in my journey – thus far, it’s this…

Monday will never come and there is never a “perfect time” to start anything!

Join with Orangetheory Santa Clarita on Facebook.

Also – their online page for Orange Fitness SCV.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress and I’m really excited to join Orangetheory in Santa Clarita…

Santa Clarita Real Estate license renewal Best Company

California Bureau of Real Estate continuing educationBoth Paris and I have been in the real estate business, licensed, since 1999 and 1998 respectively.

During that time we have used different companies to handle our California Bureau of Real Estate (CaBRE) continuing education and licensing requirements demanded by the CaBRE.

Some were okay and one is the BEST we have found.

The intention of this post is not only for Santa Clarita real estate license renewals – This company is not “tied to”Santa Clarita only – Any Real Estate licensee in the State of California is able to use their service.

Per their website for California Real Estate continuing education, they have the trust of over 85,000 real estate professionals and I’m not surprised!

They have a cloud based system for CABRE license renewal.  You no longer have to depend on clunky books and are able to access the learning materials via any “internet connected” device.

This portability expands to your mobile devices too. If you have an iPad, Android Tablet, iPhone or Android Phone – you have access anywhere you are connected to the internet!

One of the advantages of the REVEI system is that it is easy to use. When you first login to their platform, you will see that. The language used is not “typical and confusing”, you actually learn via simple statements, stories and scenarios.

If you have issues, this you won’t believe, you can call. Actually, pick up the phone and speak to a real person. One that will walk you through the steps and help you with any of the processes. Also, the phone number is not hidden from public view, it’s on the homepage of their website for all to see and use!

How about a Guarantee?  They have one and it’s money back if you don’t pass, you don’t pay.

We have used other renewal sites and systems. They have been, in our experiences, labor intensive, taxing and confusing.

I love the staff at REVEI and am proud to acknowledge that where everyone can see!

Are you a California real estate Broker – they have that too!

Be safe and here is to your successful continuing education with your California Bureau of Real Estate License!

How to get more business leads – 1 helping

BTW - We have nothing to sell - Just good intel :)

BTW – We have nothing to sell – Just good intel :)

Who do you know online?

Are you in any social media venues?

Maybe you are friends with someone on Twitter?

Maybe you go back and forth chatting and sharing their tweets?

That is your start. If you are on Google Plus, find those that are of “like mind”.

Reach out to them and make the connection a bit stronger.

Maybe LinkedIn is your forte and maybe you have someone that has been extra nice to you as of late.

See what they do and give them a plug – Maybe write them a recommendation on LinkedIn?

Maybe give their product or service a shoutout on Social media – tag them.

It’s okay to help others get what they want. You will eventually stumble onto the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

You don’t have to make this your life’s mission – but once a week, be kind to someone without expectation of anything in return.

Maybe you don’t believe in anything other than what you can see, that’s fine.

However, you must admit there are positive energies that are in existence, as well as negative energies.

Why not spread out the positive ones and see what happens.

If you need our help – let me know and I’ll be there for you.

With our real estate business, we pitch the other local businesses that we use and trust.

That has given us something to talk about and to spread a positive word about.

By the way – we are not selling anything on this site. We are merely wanting to spread the word about what we have learned from building our Real Estate Business.

We hope you find the things discussed useful – let me know if you need anything at all…

Google Plus Sharing without my approval

Don't share without approval

Don’t just Share to Share – it can be Offensive!

Are you on Google Plus and did you share a post with me without my consent?

There is a better way you know.

Circle me – then interact with me and get to know me.

Heck, we may even become friends. Friends that embrace each other in the sharing of each other’s good intel with those in our Circles on Google Plus.

But, alas – parting is such sweet sorrow. I wanted to sent this to educate you and not to upset you.

Thanks for the Understanding and may I not be the first that mutes you :(

Business done the right way by a Texas Leather Craftsman

I know that you may not appreciate this, but I can show you thousands of “commerce websites” that don’t have a phone number.

I am a big fan of Moleskine. I write in my journals – ever since I quit the LAPD and when I picked Real Estate as a Full timer – from a part timer.

The sequence of my Real Estate and LAPD business was as follows:

  • 10/09/1990 – Started the LAPD Police Academy
  • August 1998 – Became a Realtor
  • March of 2007 – Quit Full Time LAPD service
  • March of 2007 – Became a Full Level III reserve officer for the LAPD
  • March of 2007 – Went from Part time to Full time Realtor at REMAX

I had been working “behind the scenes” in our Paris911 at REMAX of Santa Clarita real estate business since I became licensed as a Realtor. But, Paris MacIvor was the full time end of our business until my LAPD Severance.

Lots of Writings – It makes my mind work better!

Back to the point. I have journals reflecting info and my happenings for every 4 months, dating back to March of 2007.

I had a leather moleskine cover back in the day – a custom leather one I ordered online – but it was way too “big” and bulky.

Today I went to a Texas Leather Craftsman I grew up in Alamogordo NM, Went to Top Leather CompanyCollege in Portales NM, which are both very close to Texas – El Paso and Lubbock – respectively.

I appreciate that part of the country and appreciated the response to my order I received.

Hello there Connor MacIvor,

I see you have a paid order in my cart. We will get your leather out within 24-48 business hours and some orders ship same day. Orders will not be shipped during weekends. As soon as your leather ships, you’ll receive an email tracking number from our shipper. If you’re in the United States, UPS ground states 1-6 business days to receive your package. If you’re an international customer, UPS Worldwide Expedited says to allow 6-10 business days for your leather to arrive. Please be aware that it might sit in customs for a few days and that those rotten customs agents will want to charge you for their troubles and to help pay for your very inexpensive medical care.

If there is anything we can help you with, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Our PHONE number is 210-858-5210. Our email is ihaveaquestion@saddlebackleather.com.

Thanks so much for your interest in my leather pieces.

Dave Munson

Gee – A phone number you can call to ask a question.

What about their 100 year warranty?

I’m sure the product I’m about to receive will be the best I have  ever had.

If it’s not – I feel so good about being able to call for Dave to make it right, I wrote this post bringing attention to his business being conducted in the “right way”.

My Secret Weapon when it comes to Real Estate Part 1

best real estate lead generationIf you have been following me for any time, you will know that I am one of the Top Producing Realtors in the Santa Clarita Valley.

However, I have a secret weapon that I will reveal to you now.

I have been an avid proponent of the Listings To Leads System developed by Scott Pierce.

Here are a few things this very inexpensive system will be able to do for you.

First, if you have a virtual tour company, that is okay, this system supplements that.

If you don’t, this system will act as a primary Virtual Tour System, plus Landing Pages plus a lot more.

Upload the landing page links as the virtual tours on Zillow and Trulia – it will show you how and the leads will flow in!

There is so much that the Listing to Leads system does, it would take me multiple blog posts to cover everything.

Plus, the “outside of the box” mindset of Scott Pierce, would require updating of each of the blog posts I wrote about the advantages. New lead generation pages are added all of the time.

Today, I’ll cover the system as it relates to the Listings  you take and start market and to advertise.

Here are a few items that we find useful – plus I’ll cover the “advantage” sites the Listing to Leads resource offers and show you my results from their useage.

  • Lead Generation

  • Single Property Websites

  • Virtual Tours

  • YouTube Presentations – automatically

  • eFlyers and Print Flyer Reports

  • Social Media Marketing

  • Listing Landing Pages

  • QR Code generators

  • Plus posting to Active Rain, Real Town, WordPress and Blogger at the touch of a button

It’s a powerful system and will have your mind spinning.

Tip – When I take a listing, I start to build out the listing to lead generators. If I give it a few hours, the listing is auto uploaded into the system, saving me time and effort.

I then take the link associated with the Single Property Website and make a URL that I save and can remember easily.

Any phone call associated with the sign call, I can text the link (it becomes mobile responsive), if I have an email I can send it, etc…

Once the “prospective buyer” lands on the page, it gives them the option, at a time you designate, to “follow this home”.

They can enter their email or phone number and get updates as to the properties status.

On the landing pages, there are other options, that you specify, to bring them to a home search, videos, and more.

Again, I could write 100’s of pages talking about Scott Pierce and Listings to Leads. Here is a single thing that I do that brings us more business in the real estate realm.

Plus, sellers love it because it shows how active we are pitching their listing to all who surf the WWW to find real estate and home listings.

How I like to handle Spam email messages

How to defeat spam on emailHave you ever been at a dinner party or business function to have your inbox start to fill up with you having “apparently” subscribed to some people’s email newsletters?

Maybe you were in a drunken state – Maybe you hit your head somewhere during the night of the event.

It could be that you told everyone you met to sign you up for their newsletter!

Most likely – you did not.

These folks are doing what the “old time” marketers love to do, they are interrupting you!

They are just adding themselves to the other “hundreds” of spam emails you are getting on a daily basis.

I was thinking recently, why not reply to see if I am able to turn the tables.

So, this is what I send to all the spam emails that are asking me for business – what do you think?

I’m Connor MacIvor with REMAX of Santa Clarita.
We have a team in place known locally as “Paris911”.
Paris is for a person, one of the team leaders and my partner.
I was the “911” with the LAPD for a long while.
Together we are Paris911.com
I’d sure appreciate any referrals you are able to send our way.
Please spread the word on Social Media about what you have found out about us per this response to your marketing email.
Also, on a local level – during your walk in life, if you hear anyone mention Real Estate and Santa Clarita or Los Angeles – Please drop our site and refer us out.
I am sure it will come back to you 10 fold.
Thanks again,
I’m Connor MacIvor with RE/MAX – Here is our YouTube Channel – Please subscribe to it too!  http://youtube.com/scvmoves
The interesting thing is some of the spammers stop sending me emails – who would have thought that “reverse psychology” and that “giving them a dose of their own medicine” could work with internet email spammers?

Teaching embedding for your Local Google Business Map on Google

If you have been lucky enough to have your local business listed on Google – Good for you.

Here are several tips and ways to make your business “Bigger” on Google.

Make sure you use Google’s tools from the mapping system for  your business and embed them, link to them and get photos from them for your website or blog.

Such as I did here.

I even did a YouTube instructional video about how to embed a Google Business and Local Places Map for some of our Local Businesses.

Google Map Tutorial:

Local REMAX on GoogleWhen we had started in the real estate business, google was no where as strong as they are today.

Below are some of the steps I took to obtain the various codes for the map, to use their link, and embed the map’s HTML into this blog post.

 REMAX of Santa Clarita Google Business

The first thing to do is to Find your Business on Google Plus for Businesses:

I just Google’d the brand name for our Santa Clarita real estate team.

REMAX of Santa Clarita

I looked at the top two results on Google Maps and see that my Paris911 Team is just below the main brokerage website.

I then selected the “B” next to the address, 25101 The Old Road, Stevenson Ranch CA, with our phone number below it. 661.284.5429

When I passed my cursor over the small balloon, it turned red and I clicked on it.

 Paris MacIvor from REMAX of Santa Clarita

The map then relocated to the “official google map page” and had my business located with some of the photos and reviews that had been posted.

 

Local REMAX on Google
This is my Official REMAX of Santa Clarita Official Map Page.

After you enjoy all it has to offer, let me get into how to embed it into your blog or website.

 Share or embed the Google Business Map

Prior to that, let me cover the “share link” function.

First – Let’s find it. You will look to the bottom of the page of where you are seeing your local business rendering on the map.

Toward the right at the bottom of your business being displayed on the Google map, you will see a small “gear”.

Clicking on that will give you some options.

The option on the top is the one you want. “Share or embed map”

 

Share the Link for Paris911

The Google Map will then supply you with two options – one for sharing of the link to this map page for your business and the other for embedding of the same into a website or blog.

For the “share link” this is suitable for sharing on Twitter, Facebook and other sites where sharing of links is allowed.

You are also able to take the code, “long or short” and hyperlink it to the text of your choosing in a blog post or on your website -etc.

Share the Map on Google

 The other function of this map interface is the “embed map” function.

There are a few choices that you can make while on this page.

You are able to choose one of the preformatted sizes for the Google Map for your Business.

You are also able to enter a custom size.

As I spoke about on the video, most of my blogs render around 800px wide, such as this business blog you are on currently.

That is where a Map of 800px would be the best choice for the rendering of my local Business that is on Google Plus.

 

Remax of Santa Clarita. Each office independently owned and operated. 25101 The Old Road, Santa Clarita CA, 91381.
(661)284-5429. DRE info: Paris MacIvor (01256647) and Connor MacIvor (01238257)

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