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Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Bob Hope Real Estate Empire Story – the short version

An interview that I saw between Howard Stern and Bob Hope years ago stuck in my mind because of what Hope said about his extraordinary wealth. His brother was the brains behind his real estate empire. With the power of the internet, today I searched for that episode. As it turns out, it was only 40 seconds of the interview in which  Hope explains that it was his brother that got him to be the owner of significant amounts of land. Hope was reported to be one of the top 10 richest men from his Hollywood era crowd (1940s & 50’s).
Here’s the clip:

In 1983, Bob Hope disputed Forbes estimate of his wealth:
After Hope refuted the wealth claim, a reporter named Richard Behar did what appears to be a thorough job in estimating Hope’s wealth at that time. The research was in response to Forbes estimate that Bob Hope’s net worth was $200 million plus, which put Hope on the Forbe’s 400 list. The reporter’s conclusion was that Hope’s wealth was probably closer to $115 million, of which $85 million was in real estate holdings.

A possible flaw in the research:
Many high net worth individuals buy real estate through corporations they own and or put holdings in the names of others.  A link to the Forbes article written by Peter Newcomb appears at the bottom of this article. He uses Behar’s research in the article.
At the time of Hope’s death, the La Times estimated Hopes wealth to be $500,000,000. (Before his death, Hope said: They say I’m worth $500 million. If I was worth that much, I wouldn’t have visited Vietnam, I’d have sent for it.)

74% of Hope’s wealth was in Real Estate:
It’s somewhat less important as to whether Hope’s wealth was $115 or $500 million. Even if Hope’s wealth was $115 million, it was documented that 74% of that number was real estate holdings. Many of Hope’s friends who also had significant earnings from the entertainment field, didn’t invest as aggressively in real estate as Hope did, and most never came close to the accumulation of wealth that Hope achieved. 

What does a billion dollars in donations look like?
Those who have studied Hope’s financials conclude that he gave away about $1,000,000,000.00 (one billion) in donations and charity during his lifetime. See the imdb biography link at the bottom of this article.

One of Hope’s larget donations came from several acres of prime real estate in Rancho Mirage, CA, which was originally bought to build a racetrack. He later decided a medical center was needed in the area instead, so he donated the land to build the Eisenhower Medical Center, which is rated among the top 100 hospitals in America today.

If you google the wealth of current era entertainers, you will find that the top entertainers hover between $200 & $400 million in net worth. Bob Hopes was estimated at around $150 million about 65 years ago. The creation of wealth through real estate is proven throughout history.

You can find example after example of people who created great wealth from their earnings by learning about and investing in real estate.  As any millionaire janitor can tell you, it’s not how much you make, it’s how much you keep and compound!

Forbes Article (after page loads, click continue to site upper right corner): http://www.forbes.com/2003/08/04/cz_pn_0804hopeedit.html

IMBD - Easy Read Biography Link: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001362/bio

If you have any questions about this post or marketing strategies, send me an e-mail using my gmail account set-up for this blog as follows: 813marketing@gmail.com 

Feel free to contact me. I’m available to consult with sellers and agents who are in need of advanced marketing strategies. I have interests in Tampa and Sarasota Florida as well as Staten Island and Brooklyn New York.

#ScottREpFL #realestate #sellingahome #Riverview-fl #brandon-fl #northportfl #portcharlottefl #florida #valricofl #lithiafl #fishhawkfl 


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Buyer's Agent or Order Taker, and why does it matter?

Buyer's Agent or Order Taker?

As a buyer, it may seem great to have someone show you 40 homes, but the 40th home will probably be marginally similar to the 7th, 12th or 18th home you saw 3 or 4 weeks earlier. Wouldn’t it be better to have a knowledgeable agent keep you on track toward buying your home now, before the next price or interest rate increase? We are in an uptrend market!

What’s an order taker?
Generally, it’s when a buyer says I want the xyz widget and the salesperson writes-up an order for the xyz widget.  A professional salesperson will sometimes be an order taker. There’s nothing wrong with that. Most of the time, they’re truly consultants.

The Process:
After an initial consultation and visiting homes on the market with you (the buyer), a pro will key into what you really want. Sometimes, what buyers say they want in the initial consultation doesn’t match what they light-up about when visiting homes on the market. If the agent gets it right, “looking” for a new home won’t be a never ending endeavor.

The Difference:
A man selling electronics in a retail store may be 100 times more proficient at the profession of sales than a person selling multi million dollars homes. The electronics guy, the rare one who’s an actual pro, zeroes in on your true hot buttons (the small percentage of features that you most desire and/or need). Before you know it, you’re the proud owner of a product that you might have otherwise waited to buy (even if it’s a bit over your budget). However, you’ll be happier for a longer period of time because he helped you get the product that gives you the WOW factor. In this case, you are fortunate to have met a professional salesperson!

An agent may show you multiple properties, some of which would work great for you, but often, an offer won’t be made because the agent wasn’t skilled at helping you to see the value or the WOW factor.

Let’s say that a home fits your wants and needs, but one of the bedrooms is small. You’re sending out rejection signals and you’re using the small bedroom as the focal point. As an agent, if the house is a good fit for the buyer, what do you say to help the buyer make the right decision which will result in the buyer putting in an offer?

An order taker will accept the rejection signals as a direction to find another house to view. This isn’t good for anyone. It’s certainly not good for you, the buyer, and it’s not good for the seller.

A professional salesperson will separate your objection (the small bedroom), and verify if you have additional objections (neighborhood, house features, etc.). He’ll get to the root of the real reason for your rejection.  If the issue is truly the small bedroom, or other similar minor details, the pro will help you see the value of the overall purchase and overcome the minor issues so the deal can move forward. Everyone wins – no procrastination!

As a buyer, a salesperson isn’t going to convince you to do anything. If you select a buyer’s agent properly, you will end out having confidence and trust in the agent. If you don’t have trust, you probably made a mistake in the agent selection.

The agent should be part of your inner circle, but instead of giving you his/her personal opinions, the agent should be able to help you logically decide if the purchase is correct based on the directions you gave the agent. It’s still your decision!

If all you want is an order taker, then none of this matters. If you want to increase your odds of making a good decision, a professional salesperson is who you want on your team.

If you have any questions about this post or marketing strategies, send me an e-mail using my gmail account set-up for this blog as follows: 813marketing@gmail.com 

Feel free to contact me. I’m available to consult with sellers and agents who are in need of advanced marketing strategies. I have interests in Tampa and Sarasota Florida.

#ScottREpFL #realestate #sellingahome #Riverview-fl #brandon-fl #northportfl #portcharlottefl #florida #valricofl #lithiafl #fishhawkfl 



Saturday, October 11, 2014

5 Simple Steps to remove distractions so you can sell your house:

5 Simple Steps to remove distractions so you can sell your house:

Buyers who are distracted by our everyday normal existence might decide to buy another house that doesn’t confuse them.

You have a buyer coming to view your house. Do your part to help a buyer see your house. If you haven’t heard it before, it’s a simple concept. A buyer has to be able to picture their life in your home.

1. Closets Step 1: Empty your closets by 1/2. Buyers need to see the space they’re getting in the closets. When your closet is stuffed, most buyers can’t picture the space. Buyers need to see that there’s room for their stuff!

   Closets Step 2: Neatly arranged clothes gives the appearance of more room even if the closet is small. Remaining clothes should be arranged neatly on hangers (i.e. shirts with shirts, jackets with jackets.) If you want to go one step further, also arrange by color.

2. We all get entrenched in our homes. Take “your home” out of your house. Store 1/3 to 1/2 of your personal items outside of the house (I don’t mean in the driveway either – lol.) Maybe ask a friend or relative to hold some of your personal items until your house sells.

   Pictures: A limited number of personal pictures are fine as long as they’re laid out neatly. If you have too many pictures, the “showing” becomes about you and not about the house you’re trying to sell.

    A buyer’s agent can use a limited number of personal wall pictures to help people envision their own pictures on the wall. If the house is a good fit for the buyer, a professional sales person will help the buyer create mental ownership with the use of pictures (different article – lol.)

3. Light sells so let it in! More people are positive about a bright sunny day than a rainy day. Now and then you hear people say it’s beautiful out, but you rarely hear that when it’s raining (even if you personally like a good thunderstorm)! Open the shades and replace burnt out bulbs.

4. Fix the minor stuff yourself or hire someone to do it. People will notice when your faucet leaks. To a buyer, that goes on their mental work to be done list. It’s a small investment to remove a minor distraction.

5. Are you feeling ambitious? How’s about a fresh coat of new paint (notice the emphasis – Fresh and New.) Your house is great, but if another equal house (can even be slightly more $) looks like less work and has a fresh feel to it, guess which house will get the offer?

If you have any questions about this post or marketing strategies, send me an e-mail using my gmail account set-up for this blog as follows: 813marketing@gmail.com 

Feel free to contact me. I’m available to consult with sellers and agents who are in need of advanced marketing strategies. I have interests in Tampa and Sarasota Florida.

#ScottREpFL #realestate #Riverviewfl #brandonfl #north-portfl #portcharlottefl #florida #valricofl #lithiafl #fishhawkfl real-estate-and-marketing.blogspot.com

Sunday, September 28, 2014


Lower your price or improve your marketing?

                          Article moved. Click here

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Can you call it a bedroom without a closet?

Can you call it a bedroom without a closet?

1. Entrance: A bedroom needs at least two methods of egress. It should be accessible from within the house (door or an entrance where a door could be reasonably installed), and then have one other exit (window or door).

2. Escape: A bedroom must have one other method of egress beyond the entrance point. A door to the exterior or a window is required.

3. Ceiling Height: 50% of a bedroom ceiling needs to be at least 7 ft tall. If a portion of the area is say 5 feet tall, that portion isn’t considered livable area and should not be counted toward the room's square footage.

4. Size: The room should be at least 70 square feet, (cannot be smaller than 7 feet in any horizontal direction.) Manufactured homes that are constructed according to the standards of HUD can have a minimum of 50 square feet of floor area (50 sq. ft. not fact checked).

5. Bedroom is to be located along and exterior wall.

6. Closet: Is a closet required to be considered a bedroom? As it turns out, it is not required in certain circumstances and locations. As an example, an old house may have been built without bedroom closets, as was common a long time ago. Depending on local rules, a closet may or may not be required in your area.

A room may not be considered a bedroom if it is used to access another room except a bathroom or closet. As an example, a room with a Study. You may choose to use the Study as a bedroom for your personal purposes, but it is not a bedroom if you have to go through one bedroom to get to it. 

Some old houses were built without closets in the bedroom. However, most people today would expect to have a closet in the bedroom. Stating a room is a bedroom when a closet doesn’t exist in the room, in a neighborhood where a closet is either required or generally accepted as a requirement, the room should not be presented as a bedroom.

Disclaimer:  This information is not guaranteed for your particular circumstance and nothing written here should be considered advise. If you want to obtain information on your own, research residential codes and other terms. You can also contact an appraiser, “local” real estate agent or broker, or other service providers.

Here are two county codes worded differently for the definition of a bedroom:
Hillsborough County Building code:
Bedroom means a private room with a closet and window, designed in a manner appropriate for sleeping, separated from other rooms by a door, and accessible to a bathroom without crossing another bedroom or living room.

Sarasota County:
Bedroom: Any residential room which has an area of 70 Sq. Ft. or more and a storage closet and is not part of the common living area.

Building codes will vary from state to state. In most cities, bedrooms must have an escape or rescue point (usually a window). Building codes will dictate the maximum and minimum height, minimum square footage and width of the window.

In some codes, a closet may not be required to classify a room as a bedroom.

I have marketing interests in Tampa and Sarasota Florida.

If you have any questions about this post or marketing strategies, send me an e-mail using my gmail account as follows: 813marketing@gmail.com 

#ScottREpFL #realestate #Riverview #brandon #NorthPort #PortCharlotte #florida #valrico #lithia #fishhawk real-estate-and-marketing.blogspot.com