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2009-08-26 18:31:34

The Greenest Real Estate Brokerage in the Country


One of ALLISON JAMES ESTATES AND HOMES’® top-producing Realtors® replied recently to the question, “what is the downside of working with AJI?” His answer? There is no downside. And he went on to describe the considerable financial benefit of receiving 100% of his hard-earned commissions, as well as saving on his annual E & O.
Yet there is another hugely important “upside” that he didn’t mention. And that is the fact that the revolutionary Internet based ALLISON JAMES ESTATES AND HOMES® business model is the most environmentally friendly prototype to date in the Real Estate industry. This is in fact the case, but the company wasn’t actually designed to be so. Its tiny carbon footprint turned out to be an unforeseen and yet profoundly significant by-product of the original business concept.
As CEO James A. Crumbaugh III wrote in his article titled By Accident, Virtually Green in April, 2008 it was quite a surprising and pleasant realization:  “When I conceived of the virtual business model for ALLISON JAMES ESATES & HOMES in May of 2007 I knew we had the formula to provide a win-win-win situation for the Broker, Realtor and consumer, but I never dreamed that we would also provide a ‘win’ for the environment as well”, he wrote. 
It turned out he was as amazed as anyone. “We’re proud to stake the claim that we’re the Fastest-Growing Virtual Real Estate Company in the Country, and now it seems, by becoming a TRUE VIRTUAL Real Estate Company, we have, quite by accident, also become the Greenest Real Estate Company in the Country”, he wrote.
ALLISON JAMES ESTATES AND HOMES® Brokers and Realtors® operate out of their home offices, which eliminates all the energy-guzzling overhead of the traditional brick and mortar offices. “With no brick and mortar Real Estate offices to supply with electricity of light, heat, air-conditioning, electronics, etc., the company’s carbon footprint nationally is substantially minimized, compared to a traditional real estate company”, Crumbaugh noted.
Additionally, the absence of the old brick and mortar office makes commuting to the office, with its accompanying carbon emissions a thing of the past. “You won’t find our Realtor® Associates driving to and from the office two or three times a day, producing pollutants,” Crumbaugh wrote.  In addition, AJI Realtors® find they can work more productively since they don’t have to spend long hours commuting to the brick and mortar environment.
State of the Art technology also plays a huge part in minimizing the environmental impact of the company. The goal has always been to provide AJI Realtors® with all the tools they would previously use in a traditional environment, only, electronically.   “In every aspect,” Crumbaugh wrote, “we’ve replaced the old “brick and mortar” practices (read “energy consuming”) with high tech, user-friendly equivalents, which are easier on the environment.”
AJI Realtors® scan all transaction documents and then use the AJI exclusive File
Transfer Protocol software to transfer them electronically to their Broker and to AJI’s corporate offices in Florida. There they are safely stored electronically in three separate secure servers for a minimum of five years. Realtors® have 24/7 access online from their home offices. “Rather than having thousands upon thousands of transactions documented on paper, we file all of the items electronically, saving a small forest or two in the process,” Crumbaugh noted.
AJI Realtors® also save a trip (and the resulting pollutants) to the local Board of Realtors when they download their required forms through their custom website provided by the company.
The entire recruiting, application, interviewing and activation process is also accomplished online or via teleconferencing; thereby saving thousands of pieces of paper that a typical brick and mortar office would involve. “Yet,” Crumbaugh wrote, “We haven’t lost the personal touch. That’s very important.” The AJI staff and computer support team is friendly, accessible and well-informed.
Thanks to Webinar technology where meetings can be held online and face-to-face, ALLISON JAMES ESTATES AND HOMES® seeks to preserve the many benefits of in-person communication, virtually. This technology helps to preserve the personal aspect while defending the planet against the pollution of additional air travel.
Liz Myers-Chamberlin is a AJI associate who writes the AJI Green Corner for the monthly newsletter that keep our national team of Brokers and Realtors® up to date on matters of interest. It includes my column “AJI Green Corner” in which I discuss a wide range of topics to benefit us and our planet.  In the coming months, I’ll be addressing ways to make our homes (and home offices) even more environmentally friendly. 
We’ll learn how to manage our carbon footprint by calculating, reducing and offsetting our national impact.  

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