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What Does a United Real Estate Franchise Look Like?

If you’ve thought about joining United Real Estate, you might be wondering what a typical United Real Estate franchise looks like. Many of the offices have quickly risen in their local real estate markets as a centralized resource for agent training and development.

By focusing exclusively on agent recruiting, training, and development, our franchises focus on helping each professional maximize income while receiving support to develop branding, training, technology, marketing, and lead generation to sustain growth over time.

 

Providing Guidance for Success-Driven Agents

If you’re looking to boost your real estate earnings and prestige in the industry, United Real Estate can help. The franchise is headed by a powerful team of brokers, giving you the support necessary to promote success.

Just some of the key figures you’ll receive support from include:

  • Dan Duffy – As CEO, Dan has worked with the United team since 2006 to offer an innovative approach and strategies to agents. This creates a competitive advantage designed to help agents at a local level.
  • Peter Giese – The President of URE, Peter offers both national and local expertise in the real estate industry that furthers the capabilities of United Real Estate Premier.
  • Dave Dickey – The Chief Technology Officer, Dave provides the newest office technology solutions to our offices around the world.

While there are other key management figures, these three individuals form a strong foundation for the organization.

 

How Training at United Real Estate Works

United invests millions into helping agents grow and develop. As such, you can count on receiving the resources necessary to succeed, including:

  • Strategic planning sessions
  • Membership access to RealEstateCoach.com, a platform with articles, radio shows, a training library, and other resources for your success
  • Live and recorded webinars
  • An invitation to the United Real Estate Annual Convention, a prime event to network and receive further education
  • Technology training to utilize the powerful technological innovations United offers to agents

 

Contact Us to Get Started

If you’ve been looking to join United Real Estate either as an office or as an agent, now is the time.  With live and web-based training, advanced support and no fees, this is the perfect resource for your future development and needs.

To learn more about opportunities available with United Real Estate, visit GrowWithUnited.com.

Partner Feature: American Home Shield

When you purchase your home, homeowners insurance is a must. But, what about a home warranty?American Home Shield

A home warranty is a great choice for most homeowners as it covers the repair or replacement of major home systems including HVAC, electrical, plumbing, large appliances, and pools, amongst others. This will give you peace of mind (often for a one-year period before you must renew) that your home is covered should anything break down.

If you’re currently considering a home warranty, American Home Shield is a leader in home warranties and a valued partner of United Real Estate. Check out just some of the major benefits of choosing them for your own warranty below!

 

A Brief History of American Home Shield

Since 1971, American Home Shield (AHS) has been providing home warranties to homeowners just like you. The company serves the needs of homeowners through their network of qualified repair professionals that are ready to help whenever necessary.

Most AHS customers use their plan twice per year, giving them the support and flexibility necessary to keep their homes running. Through their relationship with the ServiceMaster company, AHS offers premier services from well-known names like Terminix, ServiceMaster Clean, Merry Maids, Furniture Medic, and Amerispec (amongst others) to homes across the nation.

 

Major Benefits of Using American Home Shield

There are major benefits of trusting your home to AHS over other potential organizations, including:

  • 24/7 Service – Home repairs don’t happen on a predictable schedule. Open 24/7, AHS is always there when you need them.
  • 90% Responsive – 90% of the time AHS assigns contractors to homes within just 15 minutes, meaning you receive the service you need (and quickly)!
  • 93% Effective – AHS has fulfilled 93% of customer service requests in the past three years. This guarantees they’ll provide the service promised when you need it most.

 

Learn More About American Home Shield for Your Needs

If you’ve been considering a home warranty, American Home Shield is a great resource.

Learn more about their services and pricing today to see if this is the right option to protect your important investment!

Improve Your Credit, Avoid These Things

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When you’re purchasing a home, your credit score matters. After all, your score will play a major role in whether or not you will get approved for a mortgage at a rate you can afford.

But, what if you need to improve your credit prior to applying for a mortgage? Many potential homeowners find themselves in this position and as such, need to know what to do (and what not to do) to boost their credit. And in this article, we discuss the top five mistakes to avoid when you’re looking to boost your credit. Let’s get started!

 

  1. Cancel Old Credit Cards/Request Limit Reductions

Did you know that 15% of your credit score is determined from the length of your credit history? It is and as such, cancelling old cards will make it seem as if you have more debt than you actually do (because your amount of available credit will decrease).

Relatedly, you shouldn’t request to decrease your limits either. Doing so will also make it appear as if you have more debt than you do, having the same impact as cancelling old cards.

 

  1. Staying Current on Only Some of Your Cards

We all have months where we must prioritize where we spend our money to pay off debts but you can’t fall behind on your cards! Approximately one third of your score is determined by whether or not you pay your cards on time and as such, it’s vital to stay current on every card.

 

  1. Having Too Much Credit

Was there a point in your life where you had to open credit cards to balance all of your purchases? Doing so may not seem like a big deal at the time but unfortunately it will influence your overall credit score.

If you have too much credit, you may be viewed as a risk because you could accumulate a significant amount of debt rather quickly. As such, you should avoid signing up for new cards (particularly impulse decisions at stores for discounts) since doing so will further jeopardize your chances of receiving an attractive mortgage.

 

  1. Maxing Out Credit Cards

You never want to reach your credit limits when managing your debt. After all, maxing out cards will negatively affect your credit, even if you’re staying current on your payments.

Don’t buy what you don’t need. Doing so will help you pay down the cards and manage your debt more effectively (especially when you’re looking to improve your credit score.

 

  1. Never Avoid Opening Cards or Securing Loans

Some individuals have the opposite problem than many others: They don’t have enough credit to build up their score. As such, it’s important to not fear cards or loans and instead, open and use them effectively.

For example, you may want to open one credit card for a store you shop at regularly. By using it on a frequent basis and paying it off each month, you’ll build credit that will give you a much better deal once you’re ready to purchase your home.

 

United Real Estate Can Help You Purchase Your Home

If you’re building credit in the hopes of purchasing your first or next home, the team at United Real Estate can help!

Since 1925, our team has worked across the United States to provide guidance, support, and expertise to homeowners just like you. Contact us to begin the search for your home, today!

Disrupting the Real Estate Status Quo

  • Grow with United

    Grow with United

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Since 1925, United Real Estate has played an integral role in the real estate landscape. And now, we’re rethinking and transforming the way agents like you invest in franchises to expand your own real estate careers.

We don’t believe in following the traditional franchise model. Instead, we offer a series of unique features designed to help you succeed, including:

  • 100-percent commission for agents
  • Business-building technology solutions
  • A dedicated training department for both agents and managers to help optimize your website, build strong client relationships, and learn more about other relevant topics
  • Protected office territories, providing reassurance for your franchise
  • No royalty or advertising fees
  • The strength and power of a national brand
  • Exceptional customer satisfaction (which will translate to your franchise as well)

Marketing and Logistical Support You Can Count On

At United Real Estate, we’re committed to providing ongoing support to all franchises from a logistical and marketing perspective. As such, you can depend on our resources as your own.

  • Logistical Support – We offer year-round trainings, business planning sessions, and other logistical support to ensure you can meet your goals and grow your franchise (even if it means opening multiple offices).
  • Marketing Support – Enhanced Marketing Solutions (EMS) is a subsidiary of United Real Estate that provides custom designs and campaigns for brokerages and agents alike. This is your go-to resource for all marketing needs.

Learn More About Growth Opportunities Available Exclusively Through United Real Estate

At United Real Estate, we believe that boutique firms, brokerages, and agents from a multitude of backgrounds are ideally suited to transition to United Real Estate brokerages. And with our unique structure that delivers more benefits to brokerages and agents alike, you stand to grow as an individual and a business.

To learn more about franchise opportunities and get your questions answered, head over to GrowWithUnited.com. We look forward to helping grow your career, your business, and your brand!

Staging That Sells: Using Mirrors Throughout Your Home

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Do you have a mirror in your home? Chances are the answer is yes (and that you have more than one) and for more reasons than beyond checking your reflection.

After all, mirrors are a simple way to add natural light to your home, making rooms appear large, spacious, and desirable. And as such, using mirrors strategically in your home staging efforts can help you sell, all without having to spend a significant amount of money.

Now, let’s discuss how you can use mirrors in each important room to sell your home quicker than you could otherwise.

 

Using Mirrors in Each Important Room

Mirrors aren’t just for bathrooms or bedrooms (although they are important in these rooms too). In fact, you should use mirrors in multiple ways and areas throughout your home:

  • Entryway – By placing a mirror in your home’s entryway, you can help buyers imagine the home as if it were their home. It makes your home feel, well, like a home! And it gives buyers a distinct image of themselves in the home.
  • Living Room – If you have a fireplace, placing a mirror above it is a great accent that will make the room appear larger. You should also look to place mirrors on large walls opposite windows. Doing so will reflect light and fill empty wall space, immediately making the room appear more spacious.
  • Bedroom – If you don’t already have a mirror above your dresser, it’s a great idea to do so. It will make the space feel more livable, not to mention add a nice decorative touch to the room.
  • Kitchen – Kitchens don’t often have mirrors, but sometimes adding one can add another personalized touch that resonates well with buyers. In particular, you may want to add one if you have an entry/exit door in your kitchen near a hook for keys or other accents.
  • Bathroom – Every bathroom comes standard with a mirror, but that doesn’t mean your mirror has to be boring. In fact, you can choose a fun shape or mirror with a decorative frame to make even the smallest of bathrooms more stylish.

 

United Real Estate Specializes in the Staging and Sale of Homes

Are you currently trying to sell your home but aren’t quite successful? If so, the team at United Real Estate can help with the tips above and more!

Since 1925, we’ve helped homeowners like you stage and sell homes throughout the United States. Contact us today to discuss your unique needs and learn more about how we can help sell your home!

Buying Your First Home: How to Get Started

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Have you recently been feeling that now is the “right” time to purchase your first home? If so, it’s an incredibly exciting time in your life. However, there is also a lot of stress and anxiety that can come with the process.

If you’ve never purchased a home before, chances are that you have some questions. The most pressing of which is: “How do I even get started in my search?” And if you’ve been wondering the same thing, you’ve come to the right place.

Start the Process With a Few Key Questions

We’re going to answer your question with another question (or rather, questions). After all, it’s important to ensure you’re really ready to buy rather than doing so on a whim.

Some questions you should consider before going further in the process include:

  • Should I be purchasing a home at this time or is renting a better option/ Am I planning on staying in this area for the next three to five years?
  • What are my reasons for purchasing my home? Am I buying for the “right” reasons?
  • Am I at the right place in my life (relationships, job, financial stability) to purchase a home?

If these questions don’t slow you down or give you pause, it’s time to consider the next part of the process: Financing your home.

 

Get Your Finances in Line

Purchasing a home is one of the most significant investments you’ll make in your lifetime. And as such, it’s important to make sure your finances are in order before beginning the actual house hunt.

When you’re considering financing, it’s important to research available loan programs as well as potential mortgage rates and fees. Often, this means you should order your credit report, correct any errors, and pay down current loan balances before going to a lender.

Once your credit is in order, you can visit multiple lenders (beginning with your own financial institution) to interview mortgage brokers, determine potential loan programs, and figure out your potential monthly mortgage payment (depending on the home you can afford). You will want to get a preapproval letter since doing so will give you more leverage in negotiations with sellers once you find the home you want.

 

Next, the Home Search Can Begin

After these vital preparatory steps, you can begin the home search. It’s best to do so with an experienced real estate agent, helping you avoid common mistakes and get the best value for your money.

The best way to find a qualified agent is to ask for referrals from family members, friends or colleagues. By doing so, you can avoid the headache that comes with choosing an agent whose expertise might not fit your needs.

 

United Real Estate Can Help You Purchase Your First Home

If you’re interested in purchasing your first home and are looking for an agent to help you do so, the team at United Real Estate can help.

With decades of experience in helping individuals just like you, we can help find the perfect first home no matter your budget or needs. Contact us to begin the search for your home, today!

We’re Looking for Someone Awesome

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United Real Estate is looking for a passionate marketing expert to join our team and help us achieve outstanding results for our offices, franchises and stakeholders. We need someone to help execute our national public relations and marketing campaigns. In case you haven’t heard, United Real Estate is one of the fastest-growing real estate brokerages in the United States, specializing in providing agents the tools and technology needed to grow their businesses.

What are we looking for? Marketing professionals with three to five years of relevant experience and a degree in marketing, business or something similar. Relevant experience includes media relations, writing, social media, content marketing and/or project management. Creating and delivering marketing collateral and programs to support the expansion and growth of the company services and programs is a key function of this role. Our ideal team member is a self-starter, writer and thinker, passionate about driving results and comfortable taking initiative. This position reports directly to the president of United Real Estate and the ideal candidate will need the ability to work directly with a variety of internal and external stakeholders.

Here’s what we expect from our Marketing Manager –

  • Support the growth of company initiatives through the development of marketing and communications plans and outlines
  • Manage budgets and billing related to all marketing and sales activities
  • Manage all outgoing communication – including the management of the company’s social media presence, blog, online advertising, email calendar and web assets
  • Develop  strategy and copy of marketing communications and present to executive team for review
  • Develop marketing concepts and lead concept from idea through to final product
  • Create and implement an annual marketing communications plan
  • Ensures all communications align with strategic initiatives, presenting a unified message
  • Promote United Real Estate as a leader in real estate through media outreach and regular news release distribution
  • Maintain responsive working relationship with clients as well as with internal team members
  • Maintain contact and rapport with media suppliers

Salary will be commensurate with experience. Our open office environment and team structure provides a challenging, fun and highly energetic work culture. This position will be based at the United Real Estate flagship office in Dallas, TX.

If you’re interested in the position, send your resume and an explanation of why you’re our next team member to Peter Giese at pgiese@unitedrealestate.com!

Home Warranties: What You Need to Know

When you purchase a home, your mortgage company requires homeowners insurance. But a home warranty? That’s an entirely different story.

Do home warranties really protect you?

Do home warranties really protect you?

Whereas homeowners insurance protects personal property (i.e. the contents within your home) as well as the structure of your home should an accident or disaster occur, a home warranty is optional insurance that protects major appliances within the home.

So what should you know about a home warranty before deciding whether or not to get one for your home? Read on to find out!

Home Warranties are Valid for a Limited Time

A home warranty typically lasts for just one year. And while it can be renewed, you must track when it expires on your own because a carrier won’t often notify you when it is expiring.

Coverage (and Cost) Varies Depending on Your Warranty

As is the case with standard insurance, warranties differ depending on the level of coverage you want to pay for. If you opt for basic coverage, you may have a few appliances covered like your furnace, heating and air conditioning, and a few other major appliances.

If you upgrade to a premium plan, you’ll enjoy more protection for other appliances in your home. It’s up to you to decide how much coverage you feel comfortable with (and can afford) as most plans will vary from $250 to $600 annually.

You Have to Pay a Deductible When You Make a Claim

Depending on your specific home warranty, you will have to pay a certain amount each time you make a claim. And in most cases, you can’t combine costs if two appliances break down at once; you must pay separate fees for each.

In Most Cases, You Can’t Choose Who Completes the Repairs

If you’re someone who is uncomfortable with being told who can enter your home to make the repairs, a home warranty may not be for you. In almost every case, your home warranty carrier will already have a list of contractors for all repairs, meaning you won’t be able to choose for yourself.

So, Should You Buy a Home Warranty?

Deciding whether or not to purchase a home warranty is a personal decision and one that you must make depending on the appliances in your home and whether or not you’re financially prepared to make major appliance repairs should something happen.

This makes it important to consider your options and make an informed decision when you’re purchasing your home. Many new homeowners don’t invest in a warranty if their home is less than 10 years old but will if it’s more than 10 years old. You may want to use these same guidelines or others as you make the decision for yourself.

If You’re Ready to Purchase a Home, United Real Estate Can Help

If you’re on the hunt for your dream home or have found it and need to take the next step, United Real Estate is here to support you along the way.

As a national leader, we’re able to guide new and experienced homeowners with our expertise. Contact us to find your dream home, today!

How to Balance Buying and Selling a Home

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Whether you’re downsizing or upgrading, purchasing a new home is exciting. However, selling your current home at the same time can be quite a challenge.

As you can imagine, both selling and buying at the same time (or even within a short time of each other) can get tricky, and fast! But if you’re caught up in this balancing act, there are a few different paths you can choose, all of which we’ll discuss below to help you make the best choice for both you and your family.

What if You Sell First, Then Buy?

This is what’s known as the safe option, primarily because you won’t purchase a new home with the hopes of selling your current home quickly and for the price you want. However, this scenario often puts you and your family in an inconvenient scenario.

For example, if you sell your home quickly, you may have to put your belongings in storage as you search for the home you want. But with the comfort and peace of mind that comes with already selling one home before moving on to the next, many homeowners find this option attractive.

What if You Buy First, Then Sell?

If you don’t want to be in a temporary rental between selling your current home and purchasing a new one, buying first may be the answer. After all, doing so means that you can move in to your new home at a pace that works with your lifestyle. However, doing so may also mean you’re responsible for two mortgages for an undetermined period of time.

If you own your current home, this plan is great. But if you’re already paying it off, paying two mortgages may put a financial strain on your family. As such, it’s important to consider whether or not you’re financially able to support this scenario if you end up purchasing your new home before selling your current one.

What if You Buy and Sell at the Same Time?

In an ideal world, you would be able to carefully balance the buying and selling of both homes so you aren’t burdened by two mortgages or forced to find a rental as you search for your new home. However, doing so can be difficult.

The best way to buy and sell at the same time is to turn to bridge financing. Doing so means you’re able to own both homes for some time but requires a short-term bank loan. This basically establishes a Home Equity Line of Credit, allowing you to put a down payment on your new home by borrowing against the loan on your current home. Then, once you sell your home, you can repay the loan.

In this scenario, it’s also best to try and schedule the closing on your home sale after the closing date of your new home. By doing so, you can move in to your new home before closing on your current home, streamlining the entire process.

United Real Estate is Your Resource for Home Sales and Purchases

If you’re currently trying to balance buying a new home and selling your current home, the team at United Real Estate can help.

Our expertise allows us to effectively balance these buying and selling scenarios, creating an ideal experience for you and your family. Contact us to find your dream home, today!

Who Should Pay for a Home Inspection?

So you’ve found your dream home and you’re ready to sign the paperwork, but not before getting a home inspection. After all, getting an inspection from a qualified professional is absolutely essential when you want to make sure there are no unwelcome issues with the foundation, electric, plumbing, or other systems in your new home.

But one question remains: Who should pay for the home inspection?

Don’t get caught with surprises, protect yourself with a home inspection.

This is one of the most common questions when it comes to working out the fine details of any home negotiation and below, we have the answers you’ve been searching for to seal the deal on your new home.

In Most Cases, Buyers Pay for the Inspection

While the nationwide average cost of a home inspection is approximately $450, inspections can cost upwards of $1,000 in areas of New York and sometimes less than the average in less populated areas. But no matter the exact cost, a home inspection is a pricey necessity that leaves buyers wondering if they should be stuck with the bill.

However, it is the buyers who traditionally pay for the inspection.

After all, it’s in their best interest to ensure that there are no issues with the home. Or, if the inspection does reveal issues, it gives buyers the ability to negotiate the price on the home due to the cost of any necessary repairs. As such, a home inspection can actually end up saving you money should you find major issues and prevent you from getting stuck with the bill for these repairs.

Sellers Do Pay for Some Inspections

Just like it’s most common for the buyers to pay for the home inspection, it’s also common for sellers to pay for other inspections.

For example, most sellers will pay for termite inspections and sometimes even well, water, or septic inspections if necessary. This alleviates some costs from buyers and gives further reassurance that the home is in proper condition for the next owners.

Everything is Negotiable

If you’re looking for a definitive answer to this question, you’ll probably find the answer “everything is negotiable” on most resources you find. And in fact, everything is negotiable.

In some cases, the sellers will pay for a home inspection. But if you’re looking for ultimate peace of mind in one of the most significant transactions of your life, it’s best to hire your own professional for the inspection.

If You’re Ready to Purchase a Home, United Real Estate Can Help

Whether you’ve found your dream home and need assistance scheduling the inspection or are ready to begin the hunt for your next home, United Real Estate can help.

Our position as a national leader in the real estate industry gives us both the experience and expertise to handle your unique needs. Contact us to find your dream home, today!