Lakewood self defense
That’s why we are sponsoring a self-defense seminar with Dr. Nick Chamberlain in Lakewood on Saturday from 12 high noon to 2 p.m. The location is 2114 Kidwell Street at Chamberlain’s studios. We want every Real Estate agent in Dallas to learn how to play it safe!

One of the most frightening blogs I have posted was the story of Ebby agent Linda Zevallos dating Robert Durst, he the New York Real Estate scion who may finally be charged with at least three murders. You may recall that Durst lived in Dallas for at least a year at The Centrum in Oak Lawn. Other agents showed him properties.

Durst was “the oldest son and heir apparent to a real estate magnate father, and grew up in privilege outside New York City, according to the New York Times. He was passed over for the presidency of the Durst Organization in 1994 in favor of his younger brother Douglas, but he remained a wealthy real estate mogul.”

Douglas Durst, estranged for years from Robert, described his brother to the New York Times as brilliant, disturbed and dangerous. He said his brother had come to his house with guns and wanted to kill him. He also said Robert was removed from the line of succession after urinating in a wastebasket.

Durst  was arrested in New Orleans last March 2015 and extradited to Los Angeles, where he is supposed to stand trial this summer for the murder of his friend Susan Berman.

The HBO documentary The Jinx, first put Durst in a bright spotlight.

The series re-examined the execution-style killing of Berman. In the final scene, in an interview with Durst, he mumbles, “What did I do? Killed them all, of course.”

This was the man who sent Linda Zevallos $500 worth of orchids after a first date. This is why Dallas Realtors need Dr. Nick Chamberlain. (more…)

Kevin Bake Off

Dallas City Center director Kevin Caskey probably did an extra spin class yesterday evening. I mean, how else could he stay in such great shape after an event like the East Dallas MLS “Cake Wars for TREPAC” yesterday?

The auction, which benefited the Texas Real Estate Political Action Committee that focuses on protecting homeowners’ rights, featured some really amazing (and delicious!) treats from several brokerages in the area. It all started with the men of East Dallas MLS baked the treats and the ladies bought them up for a good cause.

But this year’s confections show that it takes a professional touch to rake in the big bids.

Trepac Starwars Back off

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joe atkinsJoe Atkins is one of my favorite Realtors and Brokers in town. He’s a millennial with a capital M, a self-starter and one of the best marketers around. We cannot even write about most of his homes, they don’t last on the market that long!
Anyhow, I may be spilling the beans, but Joe is opening his SECOND real estate office and this one is in Bishop Arts.  It’s going to be the first real estate office in Bishop Arts and one of the few in North Oak Cliff. It’s going to be at 8th and Bishop, across the street from the famous Lucia. The space is under construction and won’t be open for biz until January — then PARTEE!

Ryan Hopson is Joe’s top Oak Cliff agent, who is such a community-minded guy he serves as Treasurer for the Bishop Arts Neighborhood Association (BANA). He also lives just a few blocks away from the new office. Ryan was apparently very helpful in securing the new space. With Ryan and Joe’s growing cadre of agents, Joe Atkins Realty is destined to help shape the future of Bishop Arts and North Oak Cliff.

 

Porsche Exclusive

Do you know one successful agent who drives a run-down (read: crappy) car? I don’t. One of the top condo agents at a large local brokerage just bought herself a gleaming Rolls Royce — yeah more power to her, I say! Cars are not just a mode of transportation for an agent, they are a branding statement. Are you successful enough to afford a nice car? In real estate sales, image is so important. There is probably no other occupation in the world that relies on the condition and make of your car more than Real Estate. This story ran recently in Inman:

Faisal Halum Porsche Exclusive (more…)

reputation management

Imagine yourself in this situation: You’re a Realtor with many years of experience, even more satisfied clients, and by and large, a happy career. Upon the urging of your brokerage, you’ve established a Google Business page, and encouraged people to leave reviews about their experiences with you on Yelp.

Then one afternoon, you see a new review on your Google Business page that leaves you confused, angry, and a little nauseous.

buzz0976: This woman is a con artist! She’s the worse realter Ive ever met and made me loose a bunch of money on ahouse in Dallas. terrible service!!! Liar!!!!!!

Who is buzz0976? What on earth is he or she talking about? And why is this online?

Maybe the situation stops there, and that negative comment gets buried over time. But maybe it does not stop. Some Realtors have been the target of personal attacks on social media and other sites, like RipoffReport.com, where anonymous posters have fabricated all manner of stories designed to destroy their reputation.

It happened to Ebby Halliday Realtor RoseMarie LaCoursiere, who recently endured months of online harassment by an anonymous poster whose intent was clearly character assassination. LaCoursiere says this person wrote dozens of negative reviews under different names across the Internet, from her Google Business page to RipoffReport.com.

“It’s very serious when you look at how the Internet, misused with intention, can destroy a person’s reputation” LaCoursiere said. “In essence, I really have no recourse or effective way to defend my good name if I turn a blind eye and keep silent, which is what is expected of me by my online attacker. That’s what a bully expects.”

The crux of all this is online reputation management. As carefully as you may craft your online brand, by-and-large, you lack control over what other people say about you online in social media and other websites.

Most situations are nowhere near as serious as LaCoursiere’s. But what can you do about personal attacks in social media, no matter the scope? How can you defend your good name?

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That’s Marty Marks of Virginia Cook with a contingent of Virgina Cook agents, plus some Dave Perry-Miller agents, Randall Graham marketing director at Ebby Halliday, DD Flynn is here from Berkshire Hathaway, and I’m having drinks tonight with Hanne Sagalowsky and Linda Callicutt from Ebby’s Little White House. Last year Ellen Sedeno was here from Briggs Freeman. Dallas is everywhere.

Copperhead

It’s time to buy some Snake-Away, but I think I got the last jug at The Home depot — sorry. I haven’t seen any, but I’m sure they are out there in the tall grass. We have had baby snakes in our house in years past.

But Keller Williams agent Alyssa McKissack tells me she and her hubby, Brad McKissack, went for a run about a week ago in their neighborhood, “… we came around the corner & saw this monster Copperhead just chillin’, then we go over the bridge & look down to see a water moccasin, tonight’s run was done after that… ”

Rat snake

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>James and Clay

Dallas Realtor & broker Clay Stapp just got back from New York City, where he and his biz partner, James Bohan-Pitt, proudly introduced their start-up we told you about last week, HipPocket, to the tech world at TechCrunch Disrupt.

Disrupt is an annual conference hosted by TechCrunch in San Francisco, New York City, and Beijing.

James is the CEO & Co-Founder of HipPocket. Not a Realtor, but he is a product strategy, marketing and business launch specialist with experience that includes three Fidelity Investments telecoms and technology portfolio companies and a number of technology startups, including, of course, HipPocket.
Let me tell you how cool it is they were there: TechCrunch is the Holy Grail of the tech world. Getting written up is one huge kudo, showing off to all the investors who follow the news website at Disrupt is another. Attendees go there to showcase their products, network, gain insights from others, get publicity and seek investors.  (more…)