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What makes a REO Agent different than your Typical Agent?

Our Personal Investment in Our Own Education: Most all successful REO agents are highly trained and heavily invested in their education. It’s not uncommon for a successful REO agent to have thousands of dollars every year go towards education or the maintenance of costly designations and certifications. Our clients demand that we make these costly investments to ensure they are entrusting the right kind of person with their portfolio of asset which could result in millions of dollars worth of transactions. Our investment in our education ensures our clients that we know what we are suppose to do.

Our Clients Investment in Our Education: Not only do we personally invest in our education and continuing education, our clients also invest by providing us with weekly white papers, weekly webinars, regular training / procedural updates, new regulation and statutory requirements, updates to local ordinances, etc. When our clients take us on, they expect to create a partnership where knowledge is relayed back and forth, seamlessly, without exception, protecting each other and keeping our mutual goals and interest in the forefront of our daily activity.

Performance Metrics and Standards: Unlike a typical agent, we are held to a higher standard. Our clients use measurable and calculable performance metrics to ensure that we are putting our education to good use.  Our client relationships are just about the warm and fuzzy feeling you get when you talk about listing a home or meet a client for the first time. It’s about hard numbers. A REO agent has no choice but to perform and be at the top of their game otherwise, our clients know they can find someone else.

We Don’t Just Compete for a Listing, We Constantly Compete for our Jobs: We are different from other agents in the fact that we don’t just compete with other agents for a 6 month listing agreement on a single home. We are constantly competing to keep our client on every single transaction. Our performance metrics are many times written in stone. That is, we are only as good to our clients as our last closing so, if we aren’t closing the number of properties we are told to or if we aren’t maintaining them the way the clients wants them maintained, we are out. You see, our clients are setting on thousands of applications for our jobs, they have thousands of back up names they can easily just bring on and move our listings over to the “new” guy.  Our clients attend national conferences where they meet thousands of agents who want our jobs and these agents are cut throat and will do whatever it takes to knock us out and put themselves in so, unlike other agents, we are constantly in a state of competition….for our livelihoods.

Experience Like None Other: We are much more than just a listing agent. You see, our clients don’t live or work in the area we service so, we are truly the eyes, ears, hands and will of our clients. So, we can’t just list a property and forget about it till we get an offer. We have to visit the property weekly, walk through it, check for damage, report vandalism, make repairs, document everything and enforce our clients will. We come up with detailed analysis of the home’s value, we isolate marketing problems, we come up with sales strategies, we target potential buyers. We also work with evictions; negotiate relocations work with law enforcement and in some situations, we clear out homes. In essence, we aren’t just listing agents; we are property managers for our clients.

We Experience the Tragedy of Foreclosure Daily: As a REO agent, we are keenly aware that every new assignment allows us the opportunity and privilege, even if for nothing more than the briefest moment, to touch the human tragedy of losing a home to foreclosure. In this key difference, we stand out from most because no other segment of our industry can truly relate to having to talk to a single mother of three kids, all under the age of 12, working two jobs and having to tell her she is no longer able to live in the home her children have only known. In this situation, a piece of us dies every time.

To sum it all up, what makes us different than a typical agent, well….it’s actually really simple and it’s expectation. We are expected to perform at a higher standard than our non-reo counterparts because our clients are educated and experienced themselves and therefore, know what to expect. In this, we are blessed and cursed.

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What the Public Thinks About Realtors

Are you a commission hungry, investment greedy, out for the kill, selfish, only interested in your own bottom line, completely lacking any real professionalism Realtor?

Well….sure you are, didn’t you know that?

Most of us, can all agree, the public’s idea of what a Realtor does and who we are isn’t all that great. In fact, I am sure most of us have likely heard things like, “Realtors are part time professionals”, “Realtors are just over paid house wives and,  my personal favorite is, “The requirement to get a license is so low, anyone can be an agent”. Granted, perception is often times reality so, regardless of how true these statements may be, we as an industry have a problem….a big problem.

Sad to say though, I myself kind of agree with some of these perceptions. I have myself run into Affiliate Brokers who absolutely had me banging my head up against a wall. In fact, one time, after talking with an Affiliate Broker with another company, I was so exhausted, so battered by stupidity; I thought I was trying to corral cats.

My biggest problem with perception of what we do is the perception that we do nothing. This absolutely bothers me to no end but, truth be told, a vast majority of us literally stick a sign in the yard and wait…..wait……and wait some more. A majority of us don’t do much of anything to pro-actively market, advertise and network our client’s homes. In fact, it’s a bit of an epidemic however, we really aren’t the only ones to blame. How many times have you been to a listing appointment where you haven’t given your clients at least a Comparative Market Analysis, with verifiable comparables sales, in the last 3 months, within the same subdivision, within 10% or less of the subject properties square footage, within + or – 1 bedroom, bath, half bath and finally, within 10% of the subject properties acreage? Chances are, you haven’t done all that work for the majority of your clients because, your clients don’t ask for it. They don’t even know to ask for it. They just assume you did your homework or better yet, they will dictate to you what they will list it at and you don’t have any say either way.

We have all heard, “buying a home is the biggest investment you will ever make” however, how many of us, when working with our client, actually do the same due diligence we would do for ourselves when looking to buy our own home? Oh…did I just touch a nerve? I think I did.

We have a public that is so in sensed on moving quickly, that they have completely given up on moving smart. We have an industry so full of “professionals” that we have completely given up on being professional and become so in sensed with cashing that commission check. So…who is to blame for this debacle? Better yet, maybe we should ask ourselves, do we really have a problem with this perception? Maybe this is just the way the real estate business works?

I am here to say NO, this isn’t the way it’s supposed to work and we owe the general public better. I have seen Affiliate Brokers working with clients and as I pass the door, I hear an offhand remark that makes my blood boil. I get so ticked off because the Affiliate makes such a huge mistake that I can imagine myself in the court room swearing to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth….if you know what I mean. For example, when you get a new listing, how many agents call you to ask you, “What kind of condition is the home in?”, “What kind of repairs are we looking at?” or “How much do you think it will cost to fix it up?”??? Now, the funny part of this article is, some of you just read those last couple of lines and thought to yourself…..”what is the problem with answering those questions?” and then some of you read those couple of lines and cringed. I got a questions for you, what category are you in? Did you cringe or did you stop and think back to this morning when you answer all three of those questions about that new listing you got at 666 Money Pitt Ln?

To see change in this industry, each individual will first have to become that change. A very famous man, Mahatma Ghandi said something very similar within a different paradigm however, the truth behind the statement rings true here and now.

The next time you take those mandatory CE courses, actually take something with you and implement it in your daily business life. Expand your skill set, you are much more than just a Realtor. I would go so far to say, if that is all you think you are…if that is all you know….then maybe this profession isn’t right for you in the first place.

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What is a Land Surveyor?

What does a land surveyor actually do? It depends who you ask. “What is a Land Surveyor” is an entertaining video which answers that question from different perspectives: our moms, clients and the world often have different ideas about how we get our job done every day. Whether mapping floodplains, clarifying boundaries for property disputes or advising land developers, land surveyors play an important role. But do people really know what they do? This entertaining, meme-inspired video takes a comedic look at the profession.

McKissock, the creator of the video, is a trusted resource for state-specific, state-approved land surveying, engineering and home inspection courses, regulation information and compliance. This video is aimed at land surveying professionals who can laugh at the different perceptions of their career; check it out at www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoAF5sLn-Ys.

“This video is a fun way to look at an important profession that is often behind the scenes,” says Annie Creek, Business Development Manager. “No matter the career, parents and clients see us with different sets of eyes, but only people in our own area of expertise know the truth.”

For people less familiar with land surveying, it is a diverse career that requires a lot of knowledge and skills. A day in the life may look like:

- Measuring properties and pieces of land to determine boundaries;
- creating maps, land descriptions and reports;
- presenting information for legal matters, maybe even in a courtroom;
- using and understanding GPS equipment and programs;
- and much more.

4359176022?profile=originalLand surveyors are required to hold a state land surveyor license and keep up their continuing education. Because rules and regulations vary across the country, it can be confusing to know what is required for license renewal, including how long it will take, what forms are needed and the related fees. McKissock serves as a comprehensive resource about continuing education requirements and more. For license- and education-related questions, contact 1-800-328-2008.

For busy land surveying professionals who need a reminder for license renewal (because they are too busy climbing a mountain with heavy gear or whistling in convertibles, as you will see in the video), McKissock offers a free reminder service that will notify you when your license renewal date is approaching. Visit http://reminder.mckedu.com to sign up.

“We provide reminders, coursework and compliance information so over-burdened professionals don’t have to worry,” adds Creek. “We have a deep understanding of the lives of people who spend a lot of time in the field and don’t want to be concerned about license deadlines and paperwork.”

McKissock has affiliations directly with many associations to better assist professionals in receiving their continuing education credits.  For land surveyors, McKissock has met the standards and requirements of Registered Continuing Education Program (RCEP), provider number 127505.

From the McKissock website, state-licensed professionals have access to all they need to fulfill state requirements, including governing agency information, any mandatory topic needed for license renewal and they can begin taking required coursework immediately. McKissock offers customizable packages or individual land surveyor, professional engineer and home inspector courses. For more information, visit www.mckissock.com and search for your specific profession.

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What it takes to be a REO Listing Agent.


Here recently, my business has been going well enough that I am now at the point that I need to start looking at expanding the task I complete to another agent.....a co-list agent. In thinking about this, I did have a agent in mind however, I am not exactly sure he is a good fit for what it takes to do the things I do. That got me to wondering, what exactly do I do? Yes, that may seem like a silly question but, it got me to wondering even further about what exactly it takes to be a REO Listing Agent and thus, this blog.

So, before we get to talking about the day to day task, let's talk about some larger concepts that need to be realized by any REO Listing Agent.

First off, let's talk about commitment. Yeah, yeah, you know what commitment means but, how many of you actually put it in to practice daily. I suspect that many of us have so many commitments that sometimes we feel overwhelmed and can't actually get to all of our commitments in a day. In these cases where we put our commitments off till tomorrow because today was so busy, I have to stop and ask you, is what you put off till tomorrow really a commitment? To me, it sounds more like a obligation but, nothing like a commitment. The way I distinguish a commitment from an obligation is by using a time line. More specifically, if my Asset Manager gives me a task and says they need it completed in 48 hours or less, I am committed in that I no longer have the option to complete the task in 48 hours and 1 second later. This is different to me from an obligation because in my mind, an obligation doesn't have a timeline...a deadline. I am obligated to do something but, I can do it in my time....hence, my difference between a commitment and a obligation. In other words, are you committed to doing the task at hand in the time provided, regardless of other obligations you may have? If you are not because of priorities, ie.....I can't complete the assigned task because I have to pick up my child from school, then I would tell you that you may want to reconsider being a REO Listing Agent. At least my Asset Managers are looking for commitment from me and that means when they tell me at 3pm on Friday that they need a monthly marketing report completed no later than 4pm the same day.....it gets done because I am committed.

Secondly, let's have a discussion about priorities. Once again, I know you know what a priority is however, do you prioritize daily? Of course you do, we all do however, the better question is, are you prioritizing your commitments correctly. You see, many of us don't and it's not because we don't know how, it's because in many ways we have too many obligations. For example, I have a priority in my life to spend more time with my family however, that priority doesn't out weight my priority to my clients. Yeah, you heard me correctly, I said it, my family isn't a greater priority than my clients. Pick your jaw up off the floor and breathe. If you are going to be a REO Listing Agent, you need to know that your clients needs and priorities are more important than yours. As such, your clients priorities will always trump yours. For many of you, this is a problem because when I said that my client takes priority over my family, I am sure a lot of you bristled at the idea and some of you may have even said, HELL NO! It's for this very reason that you will not make a great REO Agent. Why? Because people like me will be ready to pick up your slack, show your Asset Manager that we are committed and that they are a great priority in our daily lives. Now, put yourself in your Asset Managers shoes, who would you want to work with? That's what I thought.

Thirdly, let's talk about balance. Believe it or not, you can be fully committed and, have proper priorities and still keep your life in balance. It's not easy....let's be real, it's almost impossible but, it can be achieved. You can give your client all they need....and more, as well as complete the task of other commitments, obligations , and or priorities. What does it take on your part? An incredible amount of attention to details, planning ahead, open dialogue with others, understanding your own limitations and most importantly, knowing when to ask for help. For me, balance is achieved by having the right people around me who share in the heavy burden that being a REO Listing Agent is. Team work is the only way a single person can achieve being a REO Listing Agent who close multiple millions of dollars in deals a year. Now, not all of us have the inventory on hand that would require us to have a team but, if you aren't there yet in your business, trust me, when it comes, this may be the most important thing you take away from this blog and that is Team Work.

Finally, I could go on with this blog and talk about trust, task, following instructions, etc...etc...etc... however, I have a sneaking suspension that for many of you, you never got past the second point I made....lol

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So what banks use RES.NET?

This I have to say is an odd business model that RES.NET has currently. I don't know who has advised RES.Net to not disclose or make easily available the banks that utilize their services.I would think the thought would be to have as many Realtors sign up for their services at RES.Net as possible to make sure that Realtors are already familiar with their services and using the system before a bank contacts the Realtor and when asking the Realtors they are contacting and asset manager would want to hear that they are using the service or at least familiar with Res.Net. functions.


I had posted on Wordpress that I had renewed my Res.Net AMP subscription which I also had a simliar post on ActiveRain and on here on REO PRO but Wordpress had fed to my Facebook and Twitter accounts which received some responses via email from other Realtors.


The main question is do you get business from RES.Net and what banks use RES.Net


I have read through post on ActiveRain and REO PRO members through the searching options on both sites and I found  that the following banks use RES.NET according to members.


Suntrust, GRC, Goodman Dean, IAS, Keystone,Beal,Capstone,PMH,FAS,Excelle,SAM and PNC.


If you know of any others that use Res.Net please leave a comment on this post so other members can know when looking at signing up for Res.Net who all the banks are they may have a chance to get a listing from.



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What is wrong with this industry?


"...if all of these REO companies are scaling back, why bother purchase AMP under res.net or get certified with REOtrans if we don't know if there is going to be enough work for those of us who can't get into any other company or the other companies are telling us that they are going to give their work to the preferred brokers ?" Anonymous

As I have always said and will always tell you, it's not the "company" you're with or the subscription level you paid for that is going to give you any chance at getting a REO.

The REO industry is the preverbal “boys club” and for those agents who don’t understand this concept, you will fall victim to false promises made by Asset Management Companies and Technology Platforms alike.

I have preached, revealed, screamed, wrote, published and explained to all of you through my blogs that unless you are actively contributing to this industry…..your success in breaking in is going to be less than stellar, if at all.

“Ned” our resident Asset Manager has revealed to many of his weekly column readers how to either break in or get more business. In fact, his most recent column is about this very topic yet, I didn’t but, 3 orders come in today for a FREE Agent Site, through the REOPro store, I only approved 2 blogs today and the forums seem dead today. Not to mention, I counted at least 4 articles in the Ask the AM archive on this particular topic or at the very least topics very similar and I have about 3 blogs myself I have written along with 1 blog that is nothing more than my top 8 blogs that any REO agent should read. So, with all that being said, why do we still get members who fall prey to the false and blatant lies running rampant through our industry like hungry lions on the plains of the Serengeti?

Granted, even industry juggernauts like REOTrans or RESNET seem to be participating in the “Realtor mop up” but, their lofty place as industry captains makes people like myself see these actions by them as shameless and disgusting yet, we still get agents who are clamoring, saving up thousands of dollars and purchasing higher and higher levels of “preferred status” for nothing more than the promise of a chance.

I read a recent forum thread titled “Valigent” posted by Janet Frederick on REOPro where one of our members Byron Guillermo copied and pasted a reply from an Executive with Valligent named Jeremy that said, Quote…

Lenders take advantage of the fact that many real estate agents in this economy are desperate for listings,”

HELLO! CLUE PHONE IS RINGING! It’s not just the lenders….it’s everyone in the industry. My point is, they can make the promise of a chance, with no guarantee and they will still make money hand over fist from the contract they have with the bank, to the “technology fee” you kick back and then your monthly membership fee and annual “preferred broker” fee. It’s a cash cow because of the very statement made by Jeremy with Valligent.

I am trying to explain to you, if you feel victimized, if you feel as if you have been taken to the cleaners, if you feel like no matter where you go, it’s more and more money……well, yeah, you’re right but, that’s because people are paying for it. Caveat Emptor my friends, or in other words, Let the Buyer Beware.

So, how do you avoid these people and scams, how do you break in……well, it’s as I have always said, it’s about developing relationships, providing a useful service and becoming an expert in your field. If you want to know more about my opinions on these things, read over my blogs, read the AM column this week and search through the archives.

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As I often do, I was reading over some of my favorite blogs today and a very interesting question came up. I was a bit shocked by some of the responses and I would like to know how our members would see the situation. I am not going to provide this agents name, state or contact information. Just think of this as a hypothetical situation so, here it goes…….. “I just got a contract on a REO I have listed, I learned through the city utility department that the house was fined $400.00 for lack of lawn cutting should I tell the Asset Manager or should I negotiate with the buyer and have them pay it?” Anonymous So, what are your thoughts, would you tell the Asset Manager?
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