That place where the internet and real estate values meet

My Grandma never considered the internet when buying her first house, but these days it’s on all of our minds. Think about it this way. Would you buy a house if internet access was going to be impossible for some reason? Assuming we’re not talking about a secluded cabin somewhere, it’s safe to say most buyers would have a huge problem with that (not just Millennials either). Yes, there would probably be a value impact to not have internet, but the really intriguing part begins when we consider that what happens online or digitally at or around an address can also potentially impact value. This wasn’t even a part of the conversation just a handful of years ago, yet here we are.

Guy on computer - Image purchased by 123rf dot com and used with permission by Sacramento Appraisal Blog

Digital World Meets Real Estate: A few months back I heard of a house in Kansas that had 600 million IP addresses pointed toward it. If you don’t know, every computer has what is called an IP address, which is basically a string of numbers to identify that individual computer. Well, in this case due to a company’s digital mapping error it looked like 600 million computers were being used from this one location in Kansas, which led to a whole host of problems for the occupants. As the article states, the owners and tenants have “been accused of being identity thieves, spammers, scammers and fraudsters. They’ve gotten visited by FBI agents, federal marshals, IRS collectors, ambulances searching for suicidal veterans, and police officers searching for runaway children. They’ve found people scrounging around in their barn. The renters have been doxxed, their names and addresses posted on the internet by vigilantes. Once, someone left a broken toilet in the driveway as a strange, indefinite threat.”

Yikes. Assuming buyers knew about the IP address problem and unwanted visitors and threats, couldn’t a mistake in the digital world cause buyers to pay less? Or maybe renters would pay less? Appraisers, would this be considered external obsolescence?

BIG POINT: What happens online or digitally around an address just might impact value. Think of the advent of Pokemon Go and how a digital game has the power to bring customers to commercial properties or maybe even help increase use of neighborhood parks. Remember, if you’re tired of hearing about Pokemon Go, don’t worry because there will be many more games just like it in the near future. Again, the digital world and real estate are colliding, and we can expect more of that in coming years.

Pokemon Go Real Estate

Questions: Would you buy a house without internet capabilities? What other types of activity online might impact a home’s value?

If you liked this post, subscribe by email (or RSS). Thanks for being here.

Tips for effective blogging for business

Do you have a blog for your business? Why or why not? I’ve been blogging consistently for over five years, and it’s made a very significant difference for me. In fact, I’m coming up on post #1000 very soon here, and I’m excited about that. Anyway, about six weeks ago I spoke at Drexel University for a Sacramento Business Journal event about effective business blogging. I wanted to share the talk with you in case it might be useful. I give an overview of blogging and provide very practical tips for how to blog. This is not about SEO tricks, but about the nuts and bolts of developing solid client-centric content. This is good background fodder while working, or might be useful while driving or cleaning the house. Check it out below (or here), and let me know what you think.

I did this presentation with video and social media expert Kerry Shearer, and here is a shot of me in action (if you tied my hands, I probably wouldn’t be able to speak).

ryan lundquist blogging class - sacramento business journal

SacBiz-Journal-Event

Some tidbits: In the video I mentioned the importance of developing a subscriber list, but I forgot to go into more detail. You can use a tool like MailChimp to manage subscribers. Also, this class was on both blogging and video. I mentioned in one part that I would show certain videos, but that portion didn’t make it into the video above. Here is the playlist of videos I showed during the presentation as examples of different types of videos you can make (talking head, scrolling photos, screencast, green screen, etc…). I played the first 5-10 seconds of each video.

how to create original blog content

How to come up with post ideas: Lastly, I mentioned my blog content cloud (see above), which is what I use to keep 20-30 post ideas in front of me at any given moment. I simply write down post ideas and keep them on a cork board above my monitor. One of the most important aspects of blogging is consistency, but one of the major hurdles for success is actually coming up with consistent content. That’s why this content cloud helps me thrive. Download for free and use as you wish.

I hope this was helpful.

Questions: Do you have a blog? Why or why not? Any other insight?

If you liked this post, subscribe by email (or RSS). Thanks for being here.

Sharing, copying and real estate blogging

I attended a real estate social media class and the speaker said, “Just cut and paste other people’s posts into your own blog. Boom. Blogging in just a few minutes”. What’s wrong with that?

blogging image purchased and used with permission by sacramento appraisal blog - 530

Is cutting and pasting someone’s entire blog content and using it on your own site really sharing? Or is it something else? This is important for the real estate community and really any industry to understand – especially when we hear advice like the speaker gave above. Blogging can be a very powerful tool to help build an online voice for your business, but it’s important to do it the right way. I hope this will be insightful for you, whether you have a real estate blog or you’re considering starting one (go for it). Additionally, I hope this article will help clarify what I mean when encouraging others to share my content (see 5 ways you can share my stuff). When I say, “you can share some of my content”, some people hear “you can copy my posts verbatim”, but that’s definitely not what I mean. Mostly this is just about having good manners online and creating content on your blog that will help grow your business.

What is the difference between copying and sharing real estate articles?

It is copying when…

  1. You cut and paste without giving credit.
  2. There is no link back to the original article.
  3. You didn’t ask permission to share an entire article.
  4. There is no reason why your reader would need to read the author’s website because you included all of the author’s content on your site.

It is sharing when…

  1. You clearly give credit to the author where it is due.
  2. You link back to the original article.
  3. You have permission to share an entire article.
  4. You include a snippet of the article, insert your own thoughts and leave room for your reader to visit the author’s website (just like Doug did last week with one of my graphs). In most cases it is probably okay to share snippets of posts without permission as long as you clearly identify the original author’s words and link back, but be sure to know the author’s sharing policy and realize it’s still a good idea to reach out and ask the author.

The Bottom line: Make it your ambition to respect other people’s original work. If someone took time to create something useful, honor them for it. Don’t just use someone’s content so you can get more traffic on your site or compensate for the lack of time you’re willing to put into developing your own content.

blogging-tipsSome Quick Blogging Tips:

  1. Original: Write original posts. Cutting and pasting is not blogging.
  2. You: People want to get to know you on your blog, so be sure to balance sharing portions of other people’s content with developing your own.
  3. Target Audience: Who are you writing for? Knowing this will help guide what you write about and how frequently you write.
  4. Content: What do you know that will help clients and future clients? Your blog posts can simply answer questions your clients are asking.
  5. Resource: Make it your goal to share helpful information on your blog. Be known for being an incredible resource to clients and the general public. Look in your “sent” email folder for post ideas because chances are you’ve answered questions recently that will make for great blog posts.
  6. Rhythm: Be consistent with your posts, whether you write once or month or even multiple times per week. Readers should know what to expect from you.
  7. Other tips? Comment below.

BLOGGING RESOURCES: If you’re looking for some more advice on real estate blogging or wondering how to get started, check out Quick tips for real estate blogging or How to develop original blog content or 10 ways to be a spammy real estate person online. By the way, I’m speaking about effective real estate blogging at the NorCal Real Estate Expo in two weeks. I’d love to see you there.

NorCal RE Expo Presentation Times

I hope this was helpful.

Thank you for being here. I sincerely appreciate it and I am truly honored when you share my content too (within the confines of my sharing policy of course). Seriously.

Question: Any insight, comments or blogging tips to share?

If you liked this post, subscribe by email (or RSS). Thanks for being here.

Trading real estate appraisals for bitcoin

Can I get a drumroll? I’m pleased to announce bitcoin will now be accepted as a payment option for my appraisals and consulting work. What is bitcoin? It’s a digital currency that can be used in various places online or exchanged for US dollars. From a business standpoint, I like the concept of being relevant to potential customers wanting to use newer technology, but I am also a fan of the lower 1% transaction fee through BitPay compared to PayPal’s 3% fee. There is definitely lots of hype and buzz about bitcoin right now, and some call it a fad, but at the same time I am all about wanting to meet customers where they are at and explore technology. You can check out my 3 steps to pay with bitcoin. And yes, I do still accept cash, checks and credit cards.

bitcoins real estate appraisal business - photo purchased and used with permission - 530

Questions: Would you ever use bitcoin? Do you think it’s something that will continue to grow in popularity or is it just a fad? Feel free to comment below.

If you liked this post, subscribe by email (or RSS). Thanks for being here.