State Of The Union

I am going to be politically incorrect here and say something that is on my mind and go into that “political no, no zone”!  I tried to watch the The Union address a few nights ago and President Obama really got under my skin.  Somebody needs to tell him that he is already President and he needs to stop campaigning and do the job the people elected him to do.  I’m so SICK of hearing him cry about President Bush.  He wants Senate Republicans to work with him, yet every speech he reminds everyone that he “inherited” the deficit and he blames Republicans.

In all my years I have NEVER heard another Commander-in-Chief badmouth a former President.  Ronald Regan never bashed Jimmy Carter once the campaign was over. Jimmy Carter never attacked Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford once he was elected.  I hear Obama TALK about how he wants to unite the country, yet his ACTIONS will never allow the two to willingly work together.  Obama thinks that Republicans are voting against him because they are Republicans.  Has it ever occurred to Obama that they are against him because they vote for the good of the country?  The Democrats have enough power in the Senate to pass anything they want if he could get the support of his own party, but he fails to get 100% support from his own party.

Mr. Obama is a great campaigner.  Too bad campaign season is over and he now has to try and do something he has yet to do in public service.  Serve a full term without abandoning ship and running for another office (1/2 term State Senator to 1/2 term U.S. Senator to President of the USA).

America was ignorant to vote for him in the first place.  Hillary Clinton was clearly a better, more stable choice than Obama for Democrats.  But he (Obama) charmed the pants off the country with his handsome smile and elegant speeches.  The Hollywood (borderline communists) supported him and he was off to the races.

He is a disaster, he has yet to produce a birth certificate showing he is a born US Citizen, he has lied to the American people over and over.  What about the C-Span comments.  He said over and over in his campaign that “the debate on healthcare was going to be carried on C-Span network so America could see first hand who was in the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies.”  Woooooops!  Once he was elected, I guess his party told him that it was the Democrats that were to blame and suddenly, he balks at C-Span.  Guess America did not need to know?

As far as the economy.  President Bush, John McCain and other ranking Republicans warned a Democrat run Senate in 2005 that Fannie and Freddie where out of control (easy to find video on youtube).  I remember Barney Frank SCOLDING those Republicans about trying to instill fear into America and that there was nothing wrong with the system.  Also remember, it was Bill Clinton who pushed legislation into law making it EASY to get a loan. He wanted everyone to lighten the standard so all Americans could have a piece of the American dream. 

President Bush was at the wrong place at the wrong time as all of those blunders that hit did so on his watch.  I guess Obama is going to blame 911 on Bush as well.

The fact that Obama blames Bush non-stop shows that he does not really comprehend what actually happened.  He believes his own lies.  America is headed in the wrong direction.  I see Bush (W and the father) making public service commercials on TV (give money for victims of Hati, Catarina etc.) with former President Clinton. THAT to me is how it should be.  Obama gives more respect to foreign leaders that his own past commanders.  He is acting very UN-American as far as I’m concerned.

I hope our President sees his wrong path and gets America going in the right direction.  Building this high speed rail from Tampa to Orlando is a total WASTE of taxpayers money.  He racked up more of a deficit in one year than Bush did in eight years with two wars on the books.  I hope he starts to work for the people who elected him and Mr. Obama moves more to the center, as that is the wish of America.  Nobody, even those who voted for him expected him to be this liberal.

He certainly loves that plane though.  CLEARLY his favorite “perk” of the job.  Wake up America!  If we all complain, we can get our President and our country back on track!

The Power of Video

The video revolution is upon us.  It is so crazy to me!  My real estate coach, Allen Pendley first introduced me to video in 1994, well over a decade before it’s time! What foresight!   I had a VHS tape that I used to give my sellers as a pre-listing tool so I could sell myself before the actual face to face meeting with the client.  My conversion rate went up by over 50% the first six months I started using video and I was hooked!  From that day forward, I have been on the video bandwagon.  Back then, I used to order those VHS tapes by the truckload. Every FSBO, every expired, every withdrawn listing had my video. I sent the video to all the news stations, sports franchises, sports agents, politicians, past clients, neighbors of houses I listed, open house giveaways to potential clients. Anyone who would take one, got one!  I WORKED THEN and it works even better now.

In 2010, clients EXPECT you to have products like video (now in digital format as well as CD and DVD as opposed to VHS tape) and upscale websites (shout out to Dave Mikes at Bedrock Media who designed my website, as well as many other agents across the USA) to showcase your marketing.  If you can’t outshine the other Realtors your client is interviewing, how can they reasonably expect you to make their house outshine the thousands of other houses for sale in MLS?

Agents, if you are not on board, join the video revolution today. The market is already shifting back to the good side and if the last recession told us one thing it was to aggressively market yourself during the recession.  I saw an ad the other day that noted that companies that aggressively marketing their product in the recession of the early 90’s saw a 400% increase in business when the market returned.  Those who waited until the market recovery before aggressively advertising saw only a 30% increase in business.

Now is not only the time to make your 2010 business plan, it’s time to add video into your business and make your plan for this new decade we are just starting.  The money is just waiting for you.

To see how I use video in my business, go to

A Fool With Your Pants On The Ground

Who saw American Idol last night?  The last guy sent a message to America with his “Pants on the ground, pants on the ground, look’in like a fool with your pants on the ground” song.

When I go to the mall on Friday night with my family and see all the young guys walking around with their pants hanging 1/2 down and their underwear showing, I wonder if they realize how STUPID the look.  And the girls that are with them! I ask this question: “What are you thinking girl?”

It really is crazy that this has been the trend the past few years.  Where does our youth get their role models from?  If a guy walked into my office with his “pants on the ground” asking for a job application, I would show them the door.  I don’t care how smart, how much education or what they bring to the table.  I don’t want my clients looking at their “self-expression” and I have no room for it in my office.

America needs to wake up.  To the FATHERS that let their daughters date these guys…. what are YOU thinking?  The worst part is that where we live, all the kids who were brough up with silver spoons in their mouths go to the malls on Friday night and act like they are gangsters!  They were BORN on third base but act like they just hit a triple!

Parents need to pay closer attention to what their kids are up to, yours truly included!

Short Sales: Some Realtors Hurting Sellers?

Everyday as I comb the MLS, I see Expired Listings from Realtors that were “Short Sales” or as we called them in the late 80’s and early 90’s, “Short Pays” (after the Savings & Loan Scandal). There is NO WAY that after 365 days OR MORE that those listing should not have been successfully sold. Certainly there are exceptions (I have one with an AMEX lien that will not go away and the lien has to be paid by the Buyer outside of closing) that is taking longer than expected and there are exceptions to this rule, however my issue is THIS:

An inexperienced Realtor will take this Short Sale listing knowing they don’t know how to put a deal of this magnitude together. They fill the homeowner up with the “Yes We Can” speech (and we all know how good that is working for our country) but they really don’t know what to do or where to start. And WHO wants to help them in their office without getting 50% of the deal?

The BEST thing an agent that is not a veteran of Short Sales, to do is to give this listing to another agent for a referral fee so the homeowner can escape the mess they are in. That is the best thing to do for the client. Pretending to be a Short Sale Expert when in fact you are not is against the ethics of our business and gives ALL REALTORS a bad name.

We need to clean this mess up and come down hard on those agents who don’t know what they are doing and either train them like we do at Exit Realty or help them, regardless of if we get a cut or not. And I’m not talking just to new agents. In Tampa, many of the Luxury Home Realtors of yesteryear are giving Short Sales a try. With luxury homes in such poor demand, they think they can learn something new. One Luxury Home Specialist (self-proclaimed the greatest Realtor who ever lived) only closed 10… T E N houses last year! His active listings reads like a who’s who of Tampa and he has a HUGE number of ACTIVE listings, but he averages LESS than one closing a month. But WHO are they helping by giving the perception that they are something they are not to sellers? Some of this falls on the homeowner who picks up a magazine and assumes that agents who have those listings must be good so they list with them, not knowing that the agent they select may have Active Listing Inventory that FAR outweighs the number of homes they sell in a given year.

Homeowners need to investigate how this business is run before they select an agent to sell their home ESPECIALLY if they owe more than the home is worth. The truth is, they may not even qualify for a Short Sale. We need to be honest with the homeowners and tell them the TRUTH, not what they want to hear so we can just land another listing. It is not right and we need to police this internally and keep the market going in the positive direction it is going in now. I’m tired of cleaning up other Agents messes.

What say you?

USF & Jim Leavitt

This Sept. 26, 2009, file photo shows University of South Florida head coach Jim Leavitt arguing an officials call during an NCAA college football game against Florida State, in Tallahassee, Fla.

Yesterday I was SHOCKED to see USF (South Florida in Tampa) fire Jim Leavitt over an alledged “choking” of a player.  He is THE guy who put USF on the map as a football program and is the ONLY head coach they have ever had.  Everyone knows he is short-tempered on the football field but for USF to terminate his “as if” he was going to hurt a football player in the locker room at halftime of a football game with the entire team and staff there as witnesses.

Jim Leavitt is a pillar of the Tampa Bay community and has volunteered his time and energy into many causes in Tampa. I saw him last year at a United Way benefit.

What is wrong with football in Tampa Bay?  First The Buc’s let Jon Gruden go and we got………..errrrrrr ………. oh yea, Raheem Morris! We went from play-off contenders every year to 3-13. Morris got another year, Gruden goes 9-7 and gets fired. Go figure.

Now Leavitt. On the verge of the BIG TIME. Ranked in the top 10 six times in recent years before falling late in the season.  How are they going to recruit higher quality players from THE Gators, THE Seminoles and THE Hurricanes in the Florida hotbed of talent? Who would go to USF now?

Unless they have Steve Spurrier or Jon Gruden waiting in the wings (and they don’t because they don’t have that kind of money to spend on a coach), I say letting Leavitt go will turn out to be the biggest mistake USF has ever make in their athletic history.