January 27th, 2015

Newark Soccer

Do you ever watch an athlete’s face during competition?  I do.  In all my years of, teaching, managing, and working in real estate, I have rarely seen focus and attention that even comes close to that of an athlete during a game.  It isn’t simply the focus of the eyes or the turn of the head.  Every muscle, every breath is focused on the moment at hand.  Body and mind, working as one, are poised, calculating, anticipating, and engaging, ready to respond and spring into action.  Did the young man in the picture take the time to think about how high he needed to leap to intercept the ball at the right moment?  Did he realize that he was three feet in the air?  Did he look around to see who saw his impressive leap?  No.  He was engaged in what has happening in the moment, and he responded.

How often do we respond like this in business?  We don’t.  We’re often too busy worrying about how things will make us look or posturing ourselves to make the most out of the “next big thing” that we can overlook the now.  We miss the moment, because we lose focus.  #7’s eyes never left that ball.  What is the goal on which we should fix our eyes?  Our customer.  Knowing the market is important.  Staying current on continuing ed credits, political situations, economic policy and technology is important.  But if we look away and lose focus on our customer, all of the work will be for naught.  If we let those things distract us, the customer will sail past us and roll away, ready to be scooped up and delivered into the goal by another player in the game.

Stop for a moment and look at the picture.  Take a lesson from #7.  Commit.  Never lose focus.  Great things can happen in the moment. Then leap into the air and put it all out there.  The goal is just ahead.


January 27th, 2015

Somedays, there is just nothing better than the first cup of coffee in the morning!  I am sitting here drinking my coffee this morning and…let’s face it folks, on monday morning, EVERYONE needs their first cup of coffee!

I was thinking about going to the starbucks here in Bear, Delaware, but I think I need to refrain, since the coffee I have in my hand is well 1) it is here in my hand and 2) it is delicious.  Unfortunately, it does not have caramel in it which is my favorite!

I’m just going to say…I love coffee.  It’s people like me that make sure both starbucks and dunkin donuts stay open.

Here’s my question to everyone today, “What is your favorite place to get coffee from (or brand if your prefer to make it on your own)?”

Do I REALLY Need a Realtor to Buy My Home?

January 27th, 2015

Last week, I was visiting some friends who have a daughter who is about three.  She was building a tower with her blocks while we sat around and discussed some “grown up” politics.  She could successfully make a tower three blocks, but every time she tried for block #4, her clumsy toddler fingers would knock it down.  Remembering when my own boys were that age, I offered to help steady the house while she added the last block.  Indignantly, she placed her chubby hands on her hips and announced, “No tank you.  I do it myself!”  Needless to say, the tower never passed three blocks.

We laugh, but often first-time home buyers can feel the same way.  Making the commitment to purchase a home often takes every financial resource an individual or a couple can muster, so the temptation is to forgo the use of a Realtor, jump on the DIY bandwagon, and wade into the real estate ocean alone.  Logic seems to say that the fewer people involved in the transaction, the fewer bills to pay.

The reality of the situation is that DIY real estate can be a costly venture.  There are currently over 2,300 properties on the market in New Castle County, Delaware.  For a DIY buyer, searching through all of these listings to find the property that is priced fairly, located in the right neighborhood, eligible for the most cost-effective financing, available in the right time frame, all while offering all the practical “needs” and aesthetic “wants” that the prospective buyer hopes to find is an unrealistic expectation.  An experienced Realtor has the tools to sift through the 2,300 properties and find the ones that will best suit the buyer’s checklist and price range.

Realtors are also required to educate themselves about more than just the value of a home.  They are an excellent resource for information about different types of financing, home inspections, zoning, historical registries,  and settlement procedures, not to mention their wealth of knowledge about schools, communities, services, and a plethora of other intangibles involved in finding the house that will feel like home.  The best part about using a buyer’s agent is that it won’t cost the buyer an additional penny.  At closing, agent commissions are split between the seller’s agent and buyer’s agent.  Using a Realtor will potentially save you thousands in having a qualified advocate, not cost you at the settlement table.
Especially in the current real estate market, DIY should be reserved for what happens after a home is purchased (and sometimes, not even then!).  Until the home belongs you, trust a professional Realtor to look out for your best interests and help you find Your Road Home.

Do What you love

September 22nd, 2014

Have you seen the commercial for retirement savings that asks people if they could be paid to do what they love, what would they do? People of all ages give creative, inspiring and sometimes funny answers. The commercial poses the question isn’t that what retirement is supposed to be? Then they go on to try to sell you their particular product for saving for retirement. The product isn’t what caught my eye. It was the question.

Now don’t get me wrong. I believe in planning for retirement. Mine isn’t as far away as it used to be, and the economy has done the same thing to MY retirement planning as it probably has to most of yours. However, what if we didn’t wait until retirement to do what we love?

“Wait a minute! What kind of crazy is that,” you say, “to assume that I could be a mountain climber or a mystery writer or a pie baker while I have a family to support and a business to run and my children’s college education to fund?” I’m not advocating selling the farm, so to speak, and going off to chase a dream. But what would happen to the family that you have to support and the business you run and the college fund if you looked at what you love to do, and incorporated the passion you have for mountain climbing into what you do on a daily or weekly basis? What is it about mountain climbing that excites you? The challenge? The teamwork and strategic planning it takes to tackle a challenging climb? The view from the top? The feeling that courses through your body as you know that you gave every ounce of energy you had to achieve this goal?

If I could be paid to do what I love, I would sell real estate and help others build their real estate businesses. Not because I want to line my pocket or because I enjoy wading through red tape or staying up late to sort out the details of a counter offer. I love working with people and watching them make their dreams come true. Whether it is handing the keys to a first-time-homebuyer who never thought she could purchase her own home or sitting with a new agent and watching him close his first deal, working with people is what I love. When I retire, maybe I’ll volunteer as a mentor in the school down the street or run a program at the local senior center, but for now, I’ll take my passion for people and pour that into my business.

Whatever it is that drew you to what you do, take a minute and ask yourself: If I could get paid to do what I love, what would I do? Then ask yourself, what ONE thing I can do to bring that into what I do TODAY.

Then don’t just ask the question. Do it!

Welcome to our new blog!

September 22nd, 2014

Our team is here to offer your the highest and best service when it comes to buying and selling your home!  My partner and I carry a combined 50+ years of experience!  We ahve a team of enthusiastic and projessional buyers agents who put your needs first to find Your Road Home!  We also have a team of office professionals to assure that your transaction goes through as smoothly as possible.  Our team has the experience and the manpower to assist you!


Our team specializes in a variety of areas to help your buy or sell home.

Laurie Brown is my trusted partner and offers an unparalleled level of service to her clients.  Her experience clearly shines through when she lists your home, and she does not hesitate to do everything in her power to assist her sellers in finding the right buyer for their home.

My sons, Andrew and Daniel, work especially well with assisting individuals who are trying to short sale their home.  As enthusiastic young men , they work with a vigor that us older individuals can only dream of these days!

Our buyer’s agent, Michelle Brown,  works especially well with first-time homebuyers and with investors.  With a keen eye and attention to every detail, Michelle will find that perfect home for you! She knows the ins and outs of any type of deal by this point, she is very patient and persitent and will protect your best interest throughout the entire transaction.

Beverly Culbreth is our part-time transaction coordinator.  She coordinates everything from the point of a contract to the point of a contract closing.  She has an eye for detail and makes sure everything is recorded in an accurate manner to provide clarity to our clients and provide them with the highest level of service.

Nicole Strahorn is my executive assistant.  With her expertise in communication and organizational management, she ensures that the customer’s needs are always met, schedules are kept, and everything runs smoothly.

Last, but not least, our courier Dean Mensch puts up all our signs and lockboxes and delivers our contrancts to the speed of Mercury.