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Features of an Effective Real Estate Website

With the growing competition in the real estate industry, it is imperative to do something extra so that you get an edge over others. A real estate website will certainly help you to get the desired benefits. For this, it is better to hire a professional website designing company that will provide you with an advanced yet impressive realtor website.

With the advancement in technology, use of the Internet has increased. Apart from being an entertainment and information source, it is widely used as a marketing and promotional tool by almost every businesses organization today. Moreover, it has become one of the best platforms to mark your presence in any business. In fact, the real estate industry also uses the Internet as an effective marketing tool to appeal their future clients. As a real estate agent, you can take the help of the Internet to make yourself visible to your prospective clients, and a real estate website will certainly be the best option.

If you want to stay ahead in the real estate business it is necessary to create an attractive website that can influence people. Your website must be capable enough to draw the attention of your potential clients and they must find it useful. It is advisable to get your website designed by a professional designing company that will design a content rich website, which will satisfy the clients’ objectives.

A reliable and skilled website designing company will equip your real estate website with all the latest tools and features to make it powerful and help you to sustain in the business. It will strive to design such a website that will be advanced and user-friendly. The professionals will provide features to add, edit and even remove numerous listings to your website, upload photographs for listings and provide virtual tours.

You can even publish or edit multiple web pages to your website in just few simple steps. In addition to this, a professional service provider will design a website that will have clients’ testimonials served in past, personal greeting on its home page, free articles, blogs and other informational materials. Moreover, the website developer will focus on the lead generation and client management areas of your website.

The lead generation area of a website deals with the contact form, property request form, relocation request form and home value finder request form as well. The professionals provide the lead generators on every listing page to make it easy for the clients to contact you. In fact, they provide your website with a chat feature that allows the clients to have an open discussion with your executives.

Contrary to lead generation, the client management system is present at the back-end of your real estate website that provides a complete contact database to manage leads. The system also helps you to create reminders, notes and follow-ups with your clients. Moreover, newsletters also help you to keep in touch with the clients that are not visiting your real estate website.

MLS/IDX is an essential feature of a technologically advanced realtor website. It allows the users to search through the listings provided in your website. It also helps you to turn on/off MLS (Multiple Listing Service) lead capture, associate your website with other public MLS and even search through your MLS without any charges.

Real estate websites are an excellent way to earn trust of your future clients and moreover, promote yourself as well as your business. However, you need to find a specialized realty website developer who can provide you with a compelling website.

The author of this article is associated with Intagent.com, one of the leading real estate website developers offering efficient realtor websites.

Top Real Estate Websites

Sick of your old house and want to trade for something new? Well, house-hunting can really be exhausted. Though there are real estate agents, a friend to find a house for you or a sign post telling that this house is for sale, these stuffs are quite not enough for the prospective buyers.

But thanks be to the power of the internet, nowadays, real estate shopping is easier than ever. Just a click on your computer and presto, everything you have to know, everything you are looking for a home is in front of you. The only problem with the internet house-hunting is the certainty of the place, frauds are everywhere.

So, to help our buyers, enlisted below the top real estate websites that are trustworthy, reliable and dependable when it comes to housing decisions. These sites are in no particular orders.

HotPads.com

Just another user-friendly and cute real estate portal. What makes HotPads on the list is the beautiful graphical homepage it has and its map-based search that can be found on the homepage. It was established on the year 2005 and won a Webby Awards on 2009 and 2010. HotPads now offers more than 2 million homes for sale and rental homes for about 130,000.

FrontDoor

The leader in lifestyle television, Scripps Network and HGTV launched the FrontDoor to help buyers to find the best house to call a home. There are over 1.5 million homes listed at the FrontDoor. By the name itself, you can truly trust them. With user-friendly web pages, they give you a “real world” attitude in buying the right home and selling a reliable house.

The FrontDoor includes tools that can make the buyers’ search easier, such as the mortgage calculator and rent-versus-buy tool.

FizBer.com

At Fizber.com, buyers and sellers can interact with each other through the use of an easy web page. For an easy search, the buyers can find homes for sale, the sellers post their homes and the real estate professionals list their services on FizBer.com. You can encounter more than 2 million homes for sale around USA and other countries.

You can always trust the reliability of FizBer.com for they are a TRUSTe Certified Licensee. TRUSTe is a company that assured of the online company’s privacy seal. Also, this real estate portal provides Google Map and Microsoft Virtual Earth integration for snap-shots of the homes.

Cyberhomes

Sign-up and join Cyberhomes to find a wonderful home for just one click. Cyberhomes is the best real estate website to give the best neighborhood and community for their buyers. With more than 100 million property and records like sales, mortgages, for about 85% of the US jurisdiction, Cyberhomes can lead you to the right home for you to own.

At Cyberhomes, there are monthly updates about the buyers, the sellers and the professionals. No need to worry for you can always trust them regarding the homes they are selling because it is fully verified. People behind this portal come from the Listingbook LLC whom considered as the top provider of real estate’s integrated technology and services.

Those are the top 4 of our real estate websites. Wait for the following list that entered on our list. We just need to gather more. What are you waiting for? Search for a home on any of these sites or list your home now.

Miss Victoria Block lives in the Philippines for some quite time. She took a few lesson about the Philippine Real Estate. After that, she decided to write articles about it. For now, she is proud to present one of the best Condotel in the Philippines [http://lancasteratrium.com/], the Lancaster the Atrium. Also, she is managing the blog entitled, Real Estate Business Blog.

How to Find the Best Real Estate Website

Whether you are looking for a car, toaster, or even a real estate website you want to be able to find the best bang for your buck! Finding the best value for your budget isn’t always easy. Reviewing countless testimonials, doing extensive feature analysis, and looking at different samples can often leave you as confused as before you started doing research!

Before you start creating a spreadsheet to see which website might be the best fit, I invite you to consider that there are key features that you deserve, regardless of who provides the solution. Since each professional’s needs and budget are different, consider the following guidelines before making a purchase.

What are you goals? – Are you considering a website for exposure or for leads? If you want a website just to put on your business card then you can save quite a bit of money. It won’t generate any leads for you, but at least you will have a “presence” online. Deciding on what the goals are for your website will help you to budget accordingly.
Traffic Strategy – In order for a website to generate any business for you, it absolutely must have a traffic strategy. It’s nice to say that the search engines will find your site; however, if you just wait on the Google, Yahoo, and Bing you will be waiting a long time to get a customer. A traffic strategy should include a balance of search engine traffic, pay per click traffic, offline traffic and more! When you have a balanced traffic strategy you will be able to get leads that you can turn into customers daily.
Conversion Strategy – To turn traffic into leads for your real estate business consider having a consistent conversion strategy. A conversion strategy should encompass converting that traffic into a lead AND turning those leads into appointments. A website should provide you with powerful headlines and focused scripts that will turn those internet leads into people wanting to come in and meet with you. Every prospect is an opportunity for another commission and having a powerful conversion strategy will help you to make the most from your leads.
Follow up Methods – Although it would be great to be able to convert every lead from your website into an appointment it doesn’t always happen on the first phone call. For those prospects that you can’t immediately get a hold of consider having a well planned email follow up campaign. The best websites have autoresponders that appear natural, encourage prospects to call and email, and stay in touch with your leads for 42-90+ days!
Engaging Content – The content of your website can’t just be composed of “top 5 tips” that prospects really don’t care about. In order for your website to generate leads for your business it should have unique and compelling content about neighborhoods and engage empower the reader to ask for more help when they want listings or are actually ready to purchase.

No matter who you decide to get a website from, consider the above 5 tips and evaluate the solution to ensure that it meets your guidelines. A good real estate website [http://www.automatedonlinemarketingsystems.com] will provide you with a return on your investment every month!

As part of the Real Estate Success Program, James Bridges, coaches agents across the country on effective real estate marketing techniques.

The Real Estate Success Program coaches and trains real estate agents on all aspects of real estate marketing from taking FSBO listings, Expired Listings, objection handling scripts, social networking and internet marketing.

All training and coaching is designed with the busy real estate agent in mind. The real estate training systems are designed to be cost effective with a focus on lead generation that results in consistent closings every month.

Buying Real Estate In Nicaragua

The first step to shopping for real estate in Nicaragua is to forget everything you know about the process back home… no matter where home may be.

Let me make one thing clear from the start. There are incredible bargains to be had buying property in Nicaragua. In fact, there is no other market in the Americas where insisting upon a 40% return on investment or better is reasonable. However, there are few similarities between the rules and regulations governing the real estate industries in North America or Europe, and Nicaragua. It’s because of this lack of similarities that foreign investors often get into trouble. There is a preconceived notion on the part of foreigners that the Nicaragua real estate industry is as carefully regulated as it is elsewhere, and it is this incorrect assumption that sets foreign investors up to be cheated. The only universal real estate investing rule that applies as equally in Nicaragua as it does anyway else is Caveat emptor, buyer beware.

Real Estate Brokers

Basically there’s no such thing in Nicaragua as a real estate brokerage that a Canadian, American or European would assume the term represents. There are real estate brokerage offices. Some even have familiar franchise names, but that’s where the similarity ends.

There is no mandated, formal training of real estate sales people, nor are there specific licensing requirements. Anyone can become a “realtor” by paying for a merchant license or incorporating a Nicaraguan company. I’m not suggesting this means “all” real estate sales people are incompetent or untrained… many are. In fact, there are a number of retired realtors who relocated to Nicaragua and maintain successful, upstanding businesses. However, there are many more who are not at all competent, and operate on the razor edge between honest business and outright fraud. Caveat emptor again!

There are no district or federal regulatory boards governing the real estate industry in place. Real estate sales are no more regulated than a vehicle sale transacted by a street vendor. Outright criminality is not ignored by authorities, but having the perpetrator jailed is unlikely to result in recovery of any money lost. The revenge should make a fleeced buyer feel better though. Nicaraguan jails exist to punish criminals, not rehabilitate, and they are Hell on Earth. Unfortunately though, most issues that can arise in a real estate transaction are considered civil matters by law enforcement and have to be treated as such. In short, whatever money you think you were cheated out of… consider it lost. Even with a judgement in the plaintiff’s favor, collecting money owed in a judgement rarely happens. So again, caveat emptor.

A serious shortcoming in the Nicaragua real estate market is that there is nothing similar to a Multi Listing Service (MLS). The lack of any form of MLS means there is no central registry of properties for sale, nor any information as to what a property sold for. The result is that it’s very difficult to decide what a house or commercial building in a particular neighbourhood is worth since there are no comparable property transactions to use as a guide. Appraisers base their appraisals on replacement cost mostly, and whatever else they provide is pure guess work. Ironically, banks require appraisals created by licensed Nicaraguan appraisers if mortgage funding is being requested.

There’s no such thing in Nicaragua as a listing similar to what most foreigners would understand the term to mean. Real estate shoppers will hear a realtor say that he or she has a listing, but it’s common to see two or more real estate signs on a single property. Likewise, the same property may appear on multiple real estate company websites and be advertised online by numerous different people. More confusing, the prices advertised may vary for the same house, sometimes by tens of thousands of dollars. Nicaraguans selling their homes rarely lock themselves into an agreement with one party wanting to sell their land, house or commercial building. If you want to sell something, the assumption is the more people trying to sell it the better. And by more people that can be realtors, the owner themselves, their family and friends, a neighbor, or a horse drawn carriage driver. This seems chaotic to a foreigner shopping for a retirement or vacation home, but it makes perfect sense to Nicaraguans. Without an MLS service that allows numerous realtors to show prospective buyers a listed property, letting everyone try to sell a property seems to be the best way to get exposure.

Another misconception foreign purchasers have when buying real estate in Nicaragua is that the seller is paying the real estate agent. This is sometimes the case, but even when it is the buyer may be asked to pay the commission. Yes, this is legal in Nicaragua. In fact, not only could there be a commission paid by the seller and buyer, but the real estate agent may have added an amount to what the seller actually wants in his or her hand. This too is legal. The worst case scenario is that the seller wants US$50,000 for his or her home. The sellers offers anyone selling the home US$1000 or a percentage. The real estate selling agent advertises the home for US$59,900, allowing for negotiating room. A buyer settles on US$55,000 but is told that in Nicaraguan the buyer pays the commission. Not actually the truth, but common enough that people think it’s a rule. The requested commission can be anything up to as much as 10%, or it can be a flat fee. Once all is said and done and the buyer agrees to purchase the property for US$55,000. In a case such as this, the ‘agent’ will insist on a nonrefundable US$5000 down payment. At closing the seller receives the US$50,000 that he or she wanted and the selling agent pockets the rest.

I know of a purchasers who handed a ‘realtor’ US$65.000 to purchase a 3 acre farm with a small house on the property. The ‘realtor’ then went to the owner of the property and paid him US$20,000 to buy the land. It gets worse… the ‘realtor’ never bothered to make the title transfer until the buyer discovered he was not the owner when he tried to pay long overdue taxes. In the end the property was purchased by a developer for little more than the original US$65,000, but 8 years of appreciation later. In another case Europeans purchase a home and overpaid US$85,000. Of course basing their offer on the European real estate values they knew, it was assumed they were getting a bargain. The ‘realtor’ pocketed the US$85,000 and a commission he charged the buy as well. Again, perfectly legal in Nicaragua… so caveat emptor.

The way to navigate through what foreigners view as market chaos is to use a knowledgeable real estate consultant to find a property you want, negotiate the price, terms and conditions, conduct the necessary due diligence, validate the title and survey, and so on. This is a fee based service but far less expensive than a percentage sales commission, and far, far less than a costly mistake would be. One such service is Nica Investments, a real estate consultancy that assists foreign investors purchasing real estate or businesses in Nicaragua.

Len Bowcott is the CEO of Nica Investments. Mr. Bowcott has been involved in ICI (Industrial, Commercial, Investment) real estate for almost 40 years. Having retired to Nicaragua, Mr. Bowcott has established himself as an acquisition consultant to help foreign individuals and companies make informed buying decisions and transact beneficial purchases.