Real Estate in a Virtual World.


Change the Messenger to Change the Message

Don't Let the Press Control Your Opportunities.  Get the Message Out, It's a Great Time to Buy!

Lenn Harley's recent post Housing Industry in Recession pointed out how important it is for us to be honest about the market with customers and clients.  If we can't be trusted, we won't be successful.

Unfortunately, the press dominates the flow of information and they aren't being totally honest with the consumer.  Last week, a CNN "commentator" was emphatic in her claims that you needed a 20% down payment and a credit score of 700 to obtain a mortgage.Picture

Have your heard the press talking about the opportunities to buy in this market with the FHA programs, low interest rates and lower prices?  How about your local real estate board, state association or the mortgage banking associations?

Consumer confidence is the key to the turnaround in the real estate economy.  While we wait for that process to occur, we should take the opportunity to be honest with the motivated and qualified buyers that need to take advantage of this market and need our professional guidance.  The facts:

  • First-home buyers - the rent vs. buy analysis (tax benefits of home ownership).  In many cases tenants can own their rentals for less than the monthly rent payment.
  • Move ups - When is the best time to move up?  In a downward or flat market.
  • Investors - What are you waiting for?

We have to take the responsibility to get the message out. We can't afford to let other messengers control our business and the consumers thought process. 

In one of my past posts, Managing Mindset, I focus on shifting strategy to the buying side and taking market share. So, get the message out to the buyers; low interest rates, exceptional values, great financing (FHA $7500 tax credit, low down payment).  Contact your database, write articles about the opportunities and submit them to the press.  Talk about the benefits of buying in this market.

On Monday, I will introduce a FREE training program (Praxis Plus) we developed for our agents to take advantage of this market.  Our message is - "There is a Process for Success".



Comment balloon 21 commentsFred Doleac • December 07 2008 04:06PM


Fred, I think it's up to us to keep getting the message out. There are things we can do. I've recently sought out opportunities to reach the public and have successfully done 1 TV and 5 radio interviews. It seems the producers are eager to hear from those who are actually involved in the business.

Posted by John Mulkey, Housing Guru ( almost 12 years ago

Fred, we, like you keep beating the drum.  The media is biased at best.  There IS money being lent and homes ARE being sold.

Posted by Tim and Pam Cash, Real Estate Professionals - Clarksville TN (Crye-Leike (Sango)) almost 12 years ago

John and Tim - we have that as well.  If it is current, informative and local, they will use it.

Posted by Fred Doleac, Real Estate in a Virtual World (Fred Doleac - Bean Group) almost 12 years ago

Fred, Great post, we do have to keep telling the truth, and telling people that it is a great time to buy.  Consumer Confidence is the key to not just Real Estate, but to the entire economy!

Posted by Tony & Darcy Cannon, The C Team (Aubrey and Associates Realty) almost 12 years ago

It is true Fred. We are nearing historic lows for interest rates. If you are buying and selling at the same time then it really does not make much difference that the market has dropped. You will take a hit on one end but make it up on the buy side.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) almost 12 years ago

Hi Fred. Great post. I think we have to remember that a lot of the first time home buyers out there don't have a clue about interest rates, and just how low they are right now. It is up to us to tell them.

Posted by Anonymous almost 12 years ago

We should all be doing this. Eventually the buyer will reenter the market. It may be later than we would like but we all hope they heed our advice. Nice post!

Posted by Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA. (Paratex) almost 12 years ago

Thanks for the reminder, Fred! That's why I've chosen not to give up on my apartment people down the street this last year. They need to hear the facts from someone, and it looks like it'll be ME!

Posted by Sue Gabriel almost 12 years ago

Your first mistake was listening and watching CNN>

Posted by Anonymous almost 12 years ago


You (and Lenn) are right on the money!  Our challenge is to get that message out...when our competition for the eyes and ears of the consumer is network news (or even non-network news) that keeps the viewers attention with sensational soundbites, it's a tough battle!  Absolutely true we all need to be a lot more vigilant and proactive at getting the word out...reminders about reductions in interest rates, the $7500 tax credit, the benefit of upgrading when what you are selling is "down" (but so is what you are upgrading to!), the benefit of buying investment properties while inventory is robust, is cheap, and financing is low!

Thanks for the post!!!

Posted by Judi Bryan, Your Chicagoland Connection (Executive Realty Group) almost 12 years ago

I totally agre we need to get the message out. Most people are really afraid right now.

Posted by Sandy Gleason, Realtor for Southern Idaho-Magic Valley (North Pointe Realty) almost 12 years ago

Your right, get out YOUR LOCAL market advice and numbers!  Jeff Belonger did a post on just that, you don't have to have the 20% down that the media says!  He wanted us to fight back in our posts and inform the buyers out there about the lowered interest rates.  I've done it for my market, did you?  People are so confused right now we have to contradict the bad press!

Posted by Lyn Sims and the Blog Dog (Streamwood, Elgin IL Real Estate - RE/MAX Suburban) almost 12 years ago

Fred...I went to our Local Board meeting last week and asked the Board exactly this...let's get the benefits out there...let's let people KNOW that Real Estate is Still some ways...and the benefits of the Great Interest Rates...

I will take your words from your posts and Lenns and I will visit with the General Membership meeting next week and share this ... if the Association does not want to jump on then I will spread the word myself...again...

I reflect back to a year ago when we opened up our New Company, opening Oct 1 2007 ... and all I heard from everyone around was how bad the market is ... so I ran a great little Ad throughout December & January ... with me standing in the Snow and it said  Who SAYS things are SLOW.... was a positive ad...Sold Patty

As we had been selling houses...but I had already been adjusting my goals to short sales, REO' this is what I was selling...but not the only thing we were selling...Interest rates were also good back then and we had a good lender or two that could put things together...

then all of a sudden in February the local Tribune ran a big article...I wasn't featured in it though ( which is another story)  about how the Market was still good in our area...and we had not been hit like the other areas...but now a year later...we are getting trickling affect... but I still have 3 REOS I will be listing in the next week and I am working with a few sellers on Short Sales...and Again  I ask every one I talk to  'What do you think of those Interest Rates!?' 

you see I have too much invested into this New not make it work! And with Hard Work it will!

Merry Christmas to you!

Posted by Patty Luther, Lewiston ID Real Estate, Idaho-Washington (RE/MAX Rock-n-Roll Realty) almost 12 years ago

Fred,  This is a great, honest post.  First time buyers don't know what a good interest rate is or the programs available to help them buy homes.  We need to tell them about these things.

Posted by Nancy Morgan almost 12 years ago

Excellent point and great commentary. I concur.

Posted by Lance Winslow almost 12 years ago

Tony and Darcy, Paul, Nancy and Lance - If you have ownership of information and are willing to communicate it, the motived buyers will find you.

Patty -  Exceptional efforts return results.  Congrats!

Judy, Sandy and Lyn, Paul and North - Our collective efforts can be heard and will make a difference. 

Bill - the move-up is my choice in this market.  Most agents won't go there.  As you know, it is very profitable.

Posted by Fred Doleac, Real Estate in a Virtual World (Fred Doleac - Bean Group) almost 12 years ago


This is a SUPER post!  I also keep hearing that buyers need 20% PLUS a credit score of 750 or better.  No wonder people are sitting on the fence or staying away when they hear junk like that!  Where is CNN getting it's info?  Certainly not the Real Estate Industry or Mortgage Lenders.  You are right it is up to all of us to correct them.

Posted by Debbie Cook, Silver Spring and Takoma Park Maryland Real Estate (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc) almost 12 years ago

Patty Luther is one of the best examples I can imagine!  Way to go girl!  You've got ME charged up!

Posted by Joan Snodgrass (Midamerica Referral Network) almost 12 years ago

I read both your post and Lenn's, and it's true that we need balance.  Don't over-promise. But the wall I keep encountering is helping people understand that real estate is local, and getting their info from the national news (or local news that just parrots national statistics) isn't the way to make the best decision.  

(I was born in Idaho and my 94 year old grandmother's still there - glad to hear you're doing well up there.)

I love the name of your company - what feedback/comments do you get?

Posted by Joetta Fort, Independent Broker, Homes Denver to Boulder (The DiGiorgio Group) almost 12 years ago

We see many buyers out there, and are selling homes, albeit at a much slower pace than usual... but we hear doom and gloom, and just keep plugging along... and you know what, it works... keep selling, keep in touch with your contact lists, and talk up the benefits of buying in todays market... see also a great NYT article about it being time to buy, in todays New York Times...

Posted by Paul Silver, Rhode Island full service real estate firm almost 12 years ago

John - can you forward the article in the Times or a reference point.

Joetta - it's about common sense as well.  Virtual Homes - most people think we are a virtual tour company.

Joan- Patty gets it!

Debbie - if your head is in the game, you can play.

Posted by Fred Doleac, Real Estate in a Virtual World (Fred Doleac - Bean Group) almost 12 years ago