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Thank you for attending the 2016 United Real Estate Convention!

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We had an amazing time in New Orleans and I want to thank all of our brokers, agents, speakers and exhibitors who helped make this our best convention yet! Not only was the convention fun, fantastic and fast-paced, we also changed lives. “It’s not what we get, but who we become and what we contribute that gives meaning to our lives.” – Tony Robbins

Coming off such a great week I’m already looking forward to seeing everyone at next year’s convention in Austin. And for those of you who weren’t able to attend, you will want to make certain you join us next year! Now, a recap of our time in New Orleans –

First, New Orleans was a great host city! The weather was fantastic which made for a perfect charity golf outing and for walking around the city to enjoy the incredible food that is a “NOLA” staple.

The golf outing held on Thursday was our first tournament as an official Corporate Sponsor of Autism Speaks. It couldn’t have gone better – our participants not only had fun but we also reached our goal of raising $10,000. As a company, we look forward to supporting Autism Speaks throughout the year as they continue to positively impact the lives of countless individuals and their families.

Friday was our first official day of convention and I thank everyone for enthusiastically joining us during the morning session and attending the educational breakout sessions held throughout the day. Also, a special thanks to our keynote speaker, Bernice Ross, who taught us that home sellers typically list with the last agent they have seen. Let’s embrace technology and implement video to connect with potential clients, but also remember we need to be visible, active and known as the source for all consumer real estate needs in the communities we serve.

On the second day of sessions we started the morning with our amazing keynote speaker – a successful author, speaker and entrepreneur, Mel Robbins. Mel was able to personalize her experience to all of us who are also building a business. She not only gave us the motivation to go out and positively change our lives, but also the knowledge. As you look at going out and meeting new clients, remember the 5-second rule or fear will keep you from moving forward. An attendee summed up her presentation the best by describing it as “life changing.”

Convention concluded with our awards banquet, celebration and live auction, where United Real Estate demonstrated that we stand by our guiding principles and are not “benchwarmers” when it comes to living up to them. During the live auction, we were able to raise over $70,000 to support Burnell Cotlon, his family and their commitment to rebuild their community in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans – an area is still in need of basic infrastructure. We, as a United group, made a difference and then concluded the banquet by recognizing our award-winning agents and closing the night on the dance floor with the New Orleans sound of the Royal Dukes Band.

Thanks again for making our company and convention great!

 

Peter Giese

President and Co-Founder, United Real Estate

 

P.S. Browse through our convention photo album on our Facebook page and feel free to tag yourself!

United Real Estate 2016 Convention Feature

One of the most significant benefits of being a member of United Real Estate is the annual convention. After all, there’s no event more important where you can enjoy training, networking, and a beautiful location all packed in just a few days!

This year’s convention is February 18-20, 2016 at the New Orleans Hilton Riverside. And if you haven’t yet registered, the time to do so is now so you don’t miss out on any of the benefits this convention has to offer!

Not familiar with the benefits? Here are just 5 of the countless reasons to join us in February!

 Ongoing Training

 As an agent or broker, investing time into skill development and learning new things is essential to your success. At the URE Convention, you can do just that!

Our days are packed with training sessions and speakers with expertise in a wide variety of relevant topic areas from technology to motivational speakers and beyond. There’s something for everyone to learn and by joining us, you can enjoy a weekend packed with the information you need for success.

 Notable Keynote Speakers

 From powerful motivational speaker Mel Robbins to technology strategist Andrew Dorn and United CEO Dan Duffy, the URE Convention is packed with keynote speakers designed to deliver actionable advice and support to attendees.

Just some of the many speakers you have to look forward to aside from Mel, Andrew, and Dan include:

  • Bernice Ross – Bernice Ross is a Professor of Psychology and Master Certified Coach with over 30 years of experience in real estate. The founder and CEO of RealEstateCoach.com, Bernice is a coach and trainer you won’t want to miss!
  • Joeann Fossland – Known for her personal coaching skills and expertise, Joeann Fossland has over two decades of experience helping professionals uncover and follow their passion.
  • Brenda Thompson – With over 15 years of experience in real estate sales, marketing, and management, Brenda offers a diverse array of experience to agents everywhere. At the conference, this named Best Realtor in Dallas by D Magazine is ready to show other agents how to achieve the same level of success.

 Strategic Partners, Vendors, and Sponsors

 Want to learn how to win more listings, find new buyers and increase commission rates, all while lowering your costs? If so, a visit with our strategic partners, vendors, and sponsors will help you do just that!

Just some of the companies that will be present at this year’s convention include:

  • eMerge
  • Supreme Lending
  • Enhanced Marketing Solutions
  • Rekey Locksmith
  • American Home Shield
  • Zip Falcon
  • Dee Sign
  • Logo Spectrum
  • realtor.com

 Networking Opportunities

Today, networking often dictates who succeeds and who doesn’t. And at the URE Convention, you can join with hundreds of other agents to expand your network and collaborate with professionals that you will grow to know both in and out of the workplace.

Ready to Register for Your Spot at This Year’s Convention?

 The convention is months away but registration is open now! So are you ready to claim your spot amongst hundreds of new friends you’ll make?

If so, register now or visit www.UREConvention.com to learn more about what to expect at this year’s event! We look forward to seeing you there!

Prepare Your Home for Winter

Now that the weather is only turning colder, it’s undeniable that winter is upon us. And just like you take steps once spring arrives to prepare your home for warmer months ahead, you should do the same now for the cold winter that’s about to set in.

But, what steps should you take as you prepare for cold weather? There are important measures for both your home and lawn to ensure everything is in top condition once warm weather returns, all of which we’re going to reveal below. Let’s get started!

Get Your Home Ready: 5 Important Tips

Curious what steps are most important to take as it begins to get cold outside? These 5 are a great place to get started:

  1. Inspect Your Heating System – Heating systems tend to break down on the coldest days of the year! You should pay a technician to inspect your furnace or heat pump well ahead of the cold weather. This can identify any preexisting issues and ensure your system is in tip-top shape.
  2. Inspect the Roof – Missing or damaged shingles can leak and cause issues as snow accumulates or melts. Be sure to check your roof before it begins to snow to ensure you’re prepared!
  3. Inspect the Chimney – If you live in a home with a fireplace, an inspection is in order! Get the chimney and vents cleaned to prevent fires or carbon monoxide poisoning in the home.
  4. Caulk Around Windows and Doors – If there are any gaps in caulking wider than the width of a nickel, you should reapply caulk. Use silicone caulk for exterior use because it won’t shrink and cause future gaps (or be affected by the elements).
  5. Clean Gutters – Leaves or other debris in your gutters can block water and cause damage to your roof or siding, not to mention cause ice dams. Clean them yourself or pay a professional to clean and inspect them to ensure they’re functioning properly.

Get Your Lawn Ready: 5 Important Tips

Now that you’ve handled preparation inside your home, it’s important to turn your attention to the lawn! Here are 5 additional tips to follow to ensure it’s healthy when the snow melts:

  1. Mulch Leaves Instead of Raking – Drop the rake! Mulching dry leaves in your yard is better than ranking because the small pieces will fall amidst grass blades and nourish your yard over the winter.
  2. Mulch – Mulch protects plants against cold temperatures. Use it around trees and shrubs after the first freeze by piling it between two and four inches deep around important plants in your yard.
  3. Clear Decaying/Dead Branches – Do any of your bushes or trees have decaying or dead branches? It’s important to remove them to keep all of your plants healthy.
  4. Remove Annuals and Mulch Perennials – Annuals will die as temperatures drop but perennials won’t! As such you should remove annuals but mulch perennials after the first freeze as they will often survive and regrow in the spring.
  5. Turn Off Exterior Faucets and Drain Sprinklers – Exterior faucets should be turned off and drained to prevent water in the pipes from freezing and bursting. You should also call a professional to drain your sprinkler system if you have one.

Are You Getting Ready to Sell Your Home?

If you’re currently preparing to sell your home, taking the steps above to winterize your home is a great selling feature for buyers!

If you want to take advantage of a professional team and decades of experience in home selling across the country, the team at United Real Estate can help! Contact a member of our team today to discuss your unique buying or selling needs!

8 Tips for Top Holiday Safety

The holidays are upon us and while the holidays are full of decorating, fun, and cheer, there’s one thing that you must be mindful of: Holiday safety.

After all, it’s important to keep your home free from fire and injury as you deck the halls! So from the family at United Real Estate to your own, here are 8 tips you should be mindful of to keep your home safe (and happy) for the holidays.

  1. Inspect the Lights – The lights you use around your home have likely been in your family for years. But you need to inspect them annually for frayed cords, cracks in lamps, or loose connections. This will help you keep the lights safe and functional for years to come.
  1. Turn Off Lights – It can be tempting to leave decorations plugged in when you leave your home or go to sleep, but you shouldn’t. Always switch them off to prevent fire.
  1. Choose a Fresh Tree (and take care of it properly) – If you buy a fresh tree each year for your home, choose a tree that’s fresh. This will help prevent ignition should a fire occur. Likewise, you should keep the tree watered and away from candles for additional protection.
  1. Check Lighting Certification – When you purchase any lighting fixtures or extension cords, check the certification. It should have the accreditation of an organization like CSA International, UL, or ELT to ensure the products are both safe and efficient.

 

  1. Use Only One Extension Cord – Plugging extension cords into each other can be a hazard. Use only one cord at a time and ensure it has plenty of room to reach the outlet without stretching (this will prevent tripping hazards).

 

  1. Hang Outdoor Lights With Care – Outdoor lights are exposed to the elements so you must use additional precautions. Use insulated tape or plastic clips to hold lights in place and keep electrical connectors away from metal gutters and the ground.

 

  1. Always Use the Correct Ladder – It can be tempting to use a chair or any old ladder if you’re decorating in a hurry, but you shouldn’t! Use a safe, certified ladder for all jobs to prevent injury.

 

  1. Clear Your Clutter – With so many decorations going up, it’s common to accumulate clutter around your home. But you should keep everything out of the way to prevent injury and to keep your home beautiful for the holidays!

 

Wishing You a Joyful Holiday Season

On behalf of the entire team at United Real Estate, we wish you a joyful (and safe) beginning to your holiday season!

 

If you’re planning to purchase or sell a home, the team at United can help! Contact us today to take advantage of decades of expertise and a nationwide network of professionals!

Helpful Hints for Holiday Home Sales

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During the winter people are often preoccupied with family, gift buying and avoiding the cold, which can make selling a home during the holidays difficult. Since purchasing a home is often not at the forefront of most people’s minds during the month of December, it is all the more important to market your home appropriately.  Although home buying is often in the decline during the holiday months, keep your spirits bright with these holiday home selling tips!

  1. Hire a photographer to take impressive photos of your home.  Most buyers will start their search for a home on the web, year-round. But this rings even more true during the winter months, as buyers are trying to avoid the cold weather. Give a great first impression of your home with photos that will entice buyers to come visit your home in person.
  2. Decorate for the holidays, but don’t overdo it. Keeping decorations simple will help avoid looking tacky.  Avoid offending potential buyers by displaying general winter decorations, rather than those that pertain to a specific religion. Outdoor wreaths are a nice way to welcome people into your home.
  3. Provide welcoming treats for guests. Help guests feel cozy in your home by providing treats like cookies, coffee or hot chocolate when they enter from the cold. Homebuyers who can picture themselves in a home are more likely to make an offer.
  4. Market to motivated buyers. Those buying a home in the winter typically have a reason to be doing so – job relocation or military placement, those looking to purchase before the tax deadline or college students/staff. Even though traffic may be lighter, the buyers are likely more motivated.
  5. Price your home competitively. With fewer buyers looking to buy home during the winter months, it’s likely that there will be more buyers than sellers. Price your home competitively to help keep your home at the top of customer’s minds.

Need help selling your home? We’ve got agents around the country who can help you with buying or selling your home. Contact us to get started.