Not Business as Usual, But Open for Business

With the “sheltering in place” and quarantine orders extended until the end of April, one thing we still know is: lots of people still need to sell and buy homes. With an eye towards social distancing, the real estate  industry, and Help-U-Sell Real Estate “Experts Next Door” in particular, have changed business practices to adjust to current safety procedures and protocols. 

Some states have already had real estate deemed as an essential business, which provides some leeway as we strive to continue to serve our clients. Creativity in overcoming obstacles and problem solving is the theme of the day. Naturally, technology plays an enormous part. Whether working virtually, or with key staff rotating in the actual office, we are committed to continuing work for you in every way we safely can.

John Powell

“We are doing real estate in a different way. This is still a perfect opportunity to create new connections and reaffirm old ones. We are calling our previous clients to check in on them, and see if they need anything, especially if they are unable to leave home. We are recording our listing presentations and buyer consultations to have them handy to email to our current leads.”  – John Powell, Broker and Chief Development Officer, Help-U-Sell Real Estate Headquarters

“I’ve remodeled my business entirely. I’ve been doing listing presentations via GoToMeeting, and either going to the property to sign listing agreements or conducting it via DocuSign. I have had transactions where I do not see the seller until settlement time. Sometimes I have not seen them in person at all.” – Walt Hippuaf, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Peoples Real Estate, Philadelphia, PA

Kimberly Zelena, Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate

“One of our agents walked through the house live with the client using GoogleDuo. She recorded a video, uploaded it to where the house is listed for other potential buyers to view it. Closings are limited to ten people or fewer – only the people who absolutely have to be there.” – Kimberly Zelena, Owner, Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate, Waynesboro, VA

“We moved up closings as quickly as possible for two of our elderly clients. We had the escrow officer go out and sign a client yesterday, and a mobile notary visited another client to get the job done. I’m doing as much as I can on my own. For example, my new phone takes great wide angle photos and video. I’m filming my listings, and post regularly on social media.” – Lona Lassen Murphy, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Oregon, Eugene, OR

“Two of my recent clients, sisters buying condos in the same building, closed yesterday. One could not be in state at all. The tours, the inspection, and the final walk through were all done virtually. During the inspections, I was there, live on FaceTime so she was able to ask questions. The closings were done via email and with e-signatures. Electronic and mobile notaries were approved in Florida this year and that helps a lot.” – Chantell Stevens, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Gulf Coast, Sarasota, FL

“We invested in the cameras to do high quality photos and virtual tours. The majority of people now view home listings on their phone, so we wanted to ensure they have the best viewing experience we can provide from where they are.” – John Metcalf, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Inland Valley, Lake Elsinor, CA

“We are moving closing dates up to help clients close faster. Showing houses is still possible with the CBS (call before showing) code, and assigning a special window to view the home. No one else is allowed in during that time. Both safety and security are increased.” – Yasumi Davis, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Golden Homes, Martinez, CA

“The market here is almost business as normal. Yesterday there were 22 new listings and 11 active contracts. Buyers and sellers who feel like they need to go are allowing showings, but no open houses, of course. It feels like a rainy day open house: you know there won’t be much traffic, but what you do get will be serious. I am telling sellers who haven’t listed yet to get everything ready in advance, so when the restrictions are lifted they will be ready for the burst of opportunity that is bound to happen.” – David Bartels, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty, Westlake Village, CA

“Homes that are vacant are a gold mine, but when they are not, we’ve found virtual tours have been the most helpful.” – Kurt Steffien, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Coast and Valley, Santa Ana, CA

“I have been able to work via text and email.  In one case I drove to escrow to drop off signed documents that had to have a wet signature. I wore an N95 mask, gloves, and used hand sanitizer.” – Raul Novales, Broker/Owner, Help-U-Sell Wisdom Realty, Ontario, CA

To find the Help-U-Sell office closest to serving your area, use our office locator tool. https://www.helpusell.com/OfficeLocator.html

Top Producers August 2018

August was a busy month for our Top Producers!

A hearty congratulations are in order for Karen Detwiler and her team at Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty. The hard work and dedication were exactly even, as Team Detwiler ascended to first place with 11 buyer sides and 11 seller sides. We’ve been watching Karen’s team climb  consistently higher all year long, and it’s exciting to see that effort pay off.

A regular on our Top Producers list is Richard Cricchio of Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties, who came in second place with a total of 17 buyer and seller sides. Richard is commonly flying among our Eagles, and his tactic of having a mix of different personalities represented on his team is clearly one that has made for excellent results.

Another familiar face is Mario Ferrante of Help-U-Sell Metropolitan. His team has spent much of 2018 being in our number one spot, and we are sure the last quarter of the year will be just as productive for him if the past several months are any indication of success.

One new name that we are excited to welcome into the top five this month is Help-U-Sell Legacy. Situated in Layton Utah, just north of Salt Lake City, Danny Kettle (left) and his team of three are making the magic happen with ten closings.

Patrick Wood of Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties also ties for fourth place with ten.

Office Buyer Seller Total
Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty 11 11 22
Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties 5 12 17
Help-U-Sell  Metropolitan 7 8 15
Help-U-Sell  Legacy 4 6 10
Help-U-Sell  Prestige Properties 10 10
Help-U-Sell  Greensboro 5 4 9
Help-U-Sell  Direct Savings Real Estate 3 5 8
Help-U-Sell  Full Service Realty 4 4 8
Help-U-Sell San Antonio Hill Country 2 5 7

Tying for tenth place are with six total sides a piece are Help-U-Sell Columbia Basin, Help-U-Sell Edmond/OKC, Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty, Help-U-Sell Galleria Realty, and Help-U-Sell Golden Homes.

Our Broker/Owners have been making large strides on the gross sales volume list, too. 

Richard CricchioRichard Cricchio and Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties once again hit the top spot with a total of $11.3 million dollars. Since he was second this month in the sides list and number one over here, his team has every reason to be proud. May we suggest a celebratory luau?

Patrick Wood and his team at Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties seals the second spot with $7.4 million.With two offices to run, being able to hustle to close a deal must surely be a prerequisite to work on Patrick’s team.

In third place is the lifelong disruptor, David Bartels and his team at Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty, closing with $4.2 million. Like his office name implies, David has reinvented what it means to be full service in real estate. He has added just about every conceivable option that home sellers and buyers could want, including a moving truck, legal help, and handyman services.

It’s also another “high five” for Karen Detwiler of Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty to be picking up a place in the top five on this list, too.  

Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties $ 11,349,000
Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties $  7,447,700
Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty $  4,249,500
Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty $  3,474,034
Help-U-Sell Golden Homes $  3,085,500
Help-U-Sell Legacy $  3,010,300
Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty $  2,619,000
Help-U-Sell Distinctive Homes $  2,588,400
Help-U-Sell Marquis Properties $  2,509,800
Help-U-Sell Greensboro $  2,033,000

Congratulations to every office for another fantastic month.

Top Producers: Half-Year Review!

At the six month mark and only four transactions between them, we’d call the race to the number one spot between Mario Ferrante of Help-U-Sell Metropolitan  and Richard Cricchio of Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties a “squeaker”. Jack Bailey, our 30-year Help-U-Sell veteran and coach of Help-U-Sell Greensboro continued his busy streak in third place. The Kimberly Zelena, Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real EstateZelena team (Kim pictured left) at Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate and Patrick Wood Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties complete our top 5 with a tie. If the benchmark for the first half of the year is a predictor for the second half, we’re very excited to see what these offices will do.

Office Buyer Seller Total
 

Help-U-Sell Metropolitan

41 57 98
Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties 23 71 94
Help-U-Sell Greensboro 22 46 68
Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate 24 39 63
Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties 10 53 63
Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty 13 37 50
Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty 18 25 43
Help-U-Sell Heritage Real Estate of Steele County Inc. 16 25 41
Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty 15 24 39
Help-U-Sell Real Estate Specialists 13 21 34

 

 

WOW! Richard Cricchio of Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties came shockingly close to closing nearly $51 million in gross volume sales in just six months. Let’s repeat that: FIFTY ONE MILLION DOLLARS. That’s just crazy good and wildly impressive. Coming in second, another frequent flyer David Bartels, Broker/Owner of Help-U-Sell Full Service Realtyamong our eagles, Patrick Wood Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties. David Bartels (left) at Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty makes this trifecta one worth noticing.

Office Gross Sales Volume
Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties  $  50,937,900
Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties  $  35,053,156
Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty  $  21,662,400
Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty  $  16,754,331
Help-U-Sell Greensboro  $  12,487,965
Help-U-Sell Golden Homes  $  11,530,250
Help-U-Sell Metropolitan  $  10,516,245
Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate  $  10,091,600
Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty  $    8,695,350
Help-U-Sell Legacy  $    8,688,693

Top Producers for May 2018

May shares a lot in common with April’s Top Producers list. Once again, our top ten list is really eleven, thanks to a five way tie on total sides for places 7 through 11.

Mario Ferrante of Help-U-Sell Metropolitan in Woodhaven, Michigan once again graces the top of this month’s total sides list, narrowly beating out Richard Cricchio of Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties by just two. Still it’s nice to see some different faces in our top ten, so we heartily welcome Leigh Anne Losh (left) of Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate and Yasumi and William Davis of Help-U-Sell Golden Homes.

Office Buyer Seller Total Sides
Metropolitan 4 15 19
Honolulu Properties 4 13 17
Direct Savings Real Estate 5 10 15
Golden Homes 4 9 13
Full Service Realty 6 6 12
Greensboro 4 7 11
Detwiler Realty 2 6 8
Legacy 4 4 8
Options Unlimited 3 5 8
Prestige Properties 2 6 8
Select Real Estate 2 6 8

Richard Cricchio of Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties has been at the top of this list since March of this year, so we’re going to let him keep wearing the brass ring! Patrick Wood of Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties  is also claiming a consistent spot on here for 2018. Our top three new spot holder is Yasumi and William Davis (left) with Help-U-Sell Golden Homes (they also nabbed the number four spot this month for sides, so a very fantastic month for them!)

Office Gross Sales Volume
Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties 9,761,000
Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties 5,288,900
Help-U-Sell Golden Homes 5,191,250
Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty 4,882,000
Help-U-Sell Legacy 2,735,035
Help-U-Sell Puget Sound 2,539,000
Help-U-Sell Select Real Estate 2,406,900
Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate 2,279,000
Help-U-Sell Metropolitan 2,258,799
Help-U-Sell Greensboro 2,090,029
Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty 2,013,000

Congratulations to everyone on the great results for May!

Building Business on Great Service and Branding

Michelle Morgan, Help-U-Sell Real Estate SpecialistsBefore deciding to start Help-U-Sell Real Estate Specialists, Michelle Morgan was managing a French bakery and cafe, and then segued into retail management, hoping it would be less demanding and stressful. “I was married to those jobs, but when I became pregnant, I looked at getting into real estate because it was something I could do from home,” Michelle shared.

She learned the ropes with a traditional style office in San Clemente, California, and later was asked to join a real estate office that had a flat fee model. Michelle bought her first Help-U-Sell franchise office from another Help-U-Sell Broker/Owner who was leaving real estate, and stayed in California for a few more years, until trading her California location for Lake Havasu City, Arizona, in 2005.

While the first few years of operation were normal, by 2008 Lake Havasu City was looking like the rest of the country during the economic crisis and beset by foreclosures. What made Lake Havasu a bit different from other cities experiencing the depression is the designation as a resort town. “A lot of the homes here are second homes for people,” Michelle remembered, “I became really good at doing short sales to keep the business going and got good enough where other agents were referring the short sale business to me. The downside of short sales is that the paperwork took forever, sometimes upwards of a year because banks were still faxing the documents then, and there would be hold ups due to incomplete transmissions or people would say they didn’t receive it. You’re talking about over 100 pages before they embraced sites where you could upload and email the documents. It was a ton of work but it was the only way to survive.”

By 2013, the economic recovery had started and there were many people who still had marginal equity in their homes, but the popularity of the Help-U-Sell model was still going strong for Michelle regardless of the short sales aspect of business coming to a close.

To keep her business in the forefront, Michelle uses a lot of Help-U-Sell’s “Just sold” marketing, which heavily features the “sold and saved” concept popular among Help-U-Sell Broker Owners. She also advertises in a local publication called “The White Sheet”, which gets her a lot of traction, as well as leads from realtor.com. While there are three total licensed agents in Michelle’s office, one focuses on property management to round out Michelle’s total customer offerings.

“I’d say that because of the name recognition, in combination with the great service me and my team provide, a large portion of our business comes from repeat clients and referrals from past clients. That’s what you work hard for – building trust and a great reputation in your community where people recognize your brand and what it stands for so they feel comfortable coming to you with their real estate needs,” Michelle added, “The rest is just putting in the work!”