Monday, December 26, 2005

Top 10 Business Stories in 2005

Real Estate news dominated much of the the Top 10 business stories in 2005 from two local newspapers. The News Press released their Top 10 Business Stories as did Naples Daily News, ironically on the same day.

To find out more about Homes for sale in SW Florida, check out where you can search for homes listed in the MLS. Also vist for more information about SW Florida.

Friday, December 23, 2005

What to Expect During the Holidays

Great article on what to expect during the holidays in the SW Florida real Estate market.

Brett Ellis is a Realtor in Fort Myers Florida. View his blog.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

We Love us! You should too!

Realtors are always being asked for information. Most of the time we Realtors “think” we are giving you what you want when we send a relocation booklet or other property information when in fact we are sending as much “I love me & you Should Too” material as anything else. We even have the National Association of Realtors (NAR) do studies on what people want, and where they go to find it. And they do that every year and there really are some good statistics there. Allot of their surveys are about technology, and humorously enough the only people they ask are those that have e-mail and are willing to respond to a survey about e-mail? Even this request will be slanted towards those of you who read a blog.

Yet the real people I want to impress and have conversations with are not other Realtors, and are not even my current client list, but rather those who are currently thinking about buying or selling a home. So I am looking for some real information here.

So what traits do you look for in a Realtor to sell your home?
How would you choose a Buyer’s Agent?
Where do you go to find information on a town you may be moving to?
What kinds of information do you want provided in the above?
Do you want a Realtor to do your loan too?

While we seem competitive as Realtors we are cooperative. In other words we may compete to gain your business, but we will cooperate with other agents to get your home sold. Therefore, I honestly am seeking your advice so as to become more competitive and to earn your business. So the last question is, How can I earn your personal business?

Your responses to would be greatly appreciated.

For local Denver property searches, virtual
tours and many other Denver area real estate
resources go to

As The Market Turns

As markets begin to turn across the country sellers and buyers should look for experienced agents who have been through several business cycles.

Inexperienced agents are the last to know when a market is turning, and are the least equipped to deal with it. Often they are afraid to go back to the seller and recommend a repositioning in the marketplace because just a few short weeks ago they recommended a certain listing price. They tend to try and create something out of nothing, all the while the seller is getting further behind the market as new listings enter the market and old ones reduce their price. You never want to get caught chasing the market down.

Inexperienced buyer agents may not realize the market is turning and you could end up paying a higher price than you should in a declining market.

By choosing an agent who has experience, you'll maximize what you get for your home, and you'll sell it much faster. As a seller, you're really in competition with all the other sellers out there for the most qualified buyers. Too many sellers believe they're in competition with the buyer, which really isn't the case.

Always call the most experienced agent you can find. Chances are, they've seen the up's and down's of your marketplace, and they won't be surprised by what happens next. It's your home, and a large part of your life savings. Don't gamble it away with a newer agent who doesn't know.

85% of agents in the marketplace today have only seen 1 business cycle. In a Boom market, everyone gets lucky at some point, and if you're wrong, the market will eventually catch you. Simple supply and demand economics take over, and because there are many buyes for your home, if the agent screws it up, there's always another buyer to practice with. In a changing or declining market, this isn't so. You'll want an agent who's had all the practice and ready to apss the Test.

Brett Ellis is a Realtor with RE/MAX Realty Group in Fort Myers, FL Listen to their radio show, or visit their website, or their Blog. Brett has over 17 years experience and sells over 500 homes per year.

Who Will Market My Home?

When it comes time to market your home you don't have to be casual or impulsive in choosing a real estate licensee to represent you. Indeed, at the end when you receive your proceeds check, the amount may have a lot to do with that choice you made at the outset. Here's a few tips:

  • Be sure the agent (some states call us "licensees") is a Realtor. Only member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), our trade association, are permitted to use this word. We subscribe to a Code of Ethics that goes beyond the minimal duties that every real estate agent owes the public.
  • If the agent's name has letters behind it like CRS or GRI ask what advanced levels of education and experience these represent. They are designations conferred by NAR.
  • Review the agent's resume. There's lots to be said for years of experience.
  • Review the agent's web site. The more experienced and most qualified agents will have a site that is clearly of their own making. It will be more content-rich than something that's just a page on the company site, or a template of some national service.
  • On the web site, see what kinds of properties the agent markets and the techniques he or she uses. Can you picture your home presented here? Since most buyers begin their home buying experience on-line you would want to be proud to see your home marketed here.
  • Since on-line marketing is so important these days, when you interview the agent spend some time listening to his or her on-line strategy.
  • If you compare agent applicants for this important assignment, ask yourself how the chemistry is between you. Are you a good "fit" in your business temperments? Your level of trust -- both ways -- will get you through the rough spots that come with almost every transaction.

I'm in Anchorage, Alaska, the not-so-frozen North these days, what with global warming pushing warm air from the south to us. Lots of professional photos of my community at this link.

New Cost vs Value report on remodeling

Realtor Magazine, in conjuction with Remodeling Magazine, has just released the 2005 report on remodeling costs vs the value recovered when a home is sold.

The report shows that sometimes the property value can be increased by more than 100% of the cost of the remodeling project, usually in areas where prices are rising rapidly. This can also happen where certain types of remodeling is considered to be "standard", such as where granite kitchen counters are no longer considered an upgrade. If the kitchen is not upgraded to the standard of the neighborhood, it can in fact slow down the sale of the home and cause it to sell for less than other homes in the area.

Of course remodeling is usually done for the enjoyment of the improvements, but sometimes it can be a good investment move as well.

Linda Slocum
Santa Clarita, CA

Friday, December 16, 2005

Great Tool

brett great for setting this up. Now on to business. Who is getting the treo700? and has anyone talked to a beta tester for it?
The rumors are out there, seen posts on tre0700w and the treo700p (is that mean they will offer a plam os?) I know verizon has an exclusive for 6 months on it. Any input would be appreciated since i need to replace mine and trying to resist the urge to be first in line.
Great article in SWFL about the local housing market. Talks about a possible housing bubblle. Is it about to Boom or bust?
Welcome to the Top Agent Blog, a site dedicated to informing the public about what's going on in your real estate market. The information provided here will be brought to you from Top Agents throughout North America, so you can rely on receiving good information here.

My name is Brett Ellis, a Realtor with The Ellis Team at RE/MAX Realty Group in Fort Myers, FL. We are leading agents in Southwest Florida and I look forward to bringing you news and stories pertinent to our readers from the SWFL area.

My blog is located at and my main website is located at