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Southern California Chapter of CRS Schedule for 2014

Dec. 4, 2013
Categorized in: Chapter News

Updated 5/12/2014

May 15 - 18                       NAR/CRS Midyear Meetings, Washington D.C.

May 29 - 30                       CRS 202 Buyer Strategies - Murrietta, CA

June 5                                 Board of Directors Meeting, Irvine CA

June 30/July 1                     CRS 201 Listing Strategies, San Gabriel, CA

July 29 - 30                        CRS 206 Technoloogy, San Gabriel, CA

August 8                             Real Estate Educational & Networking Meeting (TBD)

August 19 - 20                   CRS 200 Business Planning and Marketing, San Gabriel CA

Sept. 16 - 17                      CRS 201 Listing Strategie, Hesperia, CA

Sept. 18 - 19                      CRS 202 Buyer Strategies, Palm Desert, CA

October 2 - 3                     CRS 210: Building an Exceptionl Customer Service

                                           Referral Business, Murrietta, CA

October 8 - 11                    C.A.R. Fall Meetings, Anaheim CA

November 7 - 10                 NAR/CRS Annual Meetings, New Orleans, LA

November 20                      Leadership Retreat (site TBD)

November 21                      Real Estate Educational & Networking Meeting (TBD)

December 4                         NEW 1-Day Essential Course - Win-Win Negotiations (TBD)   

Attend the 2014 CRS Sellabration in San Diego on Coronado Island

Oct. 28, 2013
Categorized in: Sellabration

The Southern California Chapter of CRS encourages you to invest in yourself and your business by attending Sell-a-bration®, the annual CRS educational conference, Jan. 31 - Feb. 2, 2014 at the beautiful Loews Coronado Bay Resort in Coronado (San Diego).  

Hundreds of top real estate professionals working in all types of markets across the country attend this event to share ideas, grow their referral business and learn what's working (and what's not).

PLUS: If you are working on your CRS designation you can earn 16 credits by attending Sellabration 2014

Topics Include:
  • Online Advertising
  • Web Lead Strategies
  • Going Paperless
  • Lead Generation
  • Market Data
  • Addressing Lack of Inventory

There will also be a special LEGENDS PROGRAM (separate event) on the Thursday preceeding Sellabration.

Act quickly and you can save up to $100 off the registration price by inviting a friend through our Buddy Program*. Simply sign up for Sell-a-bration® with a friend before November 11, 2013, and you both receive a $100 discount off the regular solo registration price.

FEES:                              by 11/11     by 1/31       solo

CRS Designee, Member $550 $575 $650
Non-Member $650 $675 $750

 

Visit www.crs.com/events/sell-a-bration for more details. *Buddy Program cannot be combined with any other offers or discounts. 

DOWNLOAD REGISTRATION/BUDDY PROGRAM FORM BELOW

 

2014 CRS Sellabration Registration and Buddy Program Form by Jeff Dowler

Google+ for CRSs

Oct. 23, 2013
Categorized in: Social Media

If you haven't discovered Google+ yet you have about 359 million others ahead of you.

No doubt you have heard of it but are you there yet?

Google+ may be the most powerful place for you to be in the social media universe in terms of establishing your presence and building relationships, establishing authorship of articles you write, and sharing great content - yours and others. It's a Google product so who do you think the search engines, especially Google, was going to listen to?

Here are several great articles that will help you get started, even if you aren't on any of the other social media sites.

Google+ for Real Estate - How to Get into the Game

Google+ for Real Estate Agents - A Beginner's Guide

Google+ For Realtors - Who Needs it? You Do!

SoCal CRS at the C.A.R. Expo October 8 - 10, 2013 in Long Beach CA

Oct. 7, 2013
Categorized in: Chapter News

The Southern California Chapter of CRS will be at the California Association of REALTORS (C.A.R) Expo on October 8, 9 and 10 this year and we'd love to have you stop by!

WHERE TO FIND US

at the C.A.R. EXPO in LONG BEACH

First, we will be sponsoring a booth at the Expo, which opens at 2 pm on Tuesday October 2. You can stop by to learn more about becoming a Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), joining our Local Chapter, getting involved in our Chapter on the Board or in special projects, and upcoming educational opportunities in October in Hesperia and Palm Desert. It's a great way to get to meet some other area CRSs, too, and build your referral network.

The SoCal CRS booth (#527) will be open Tuesday from 2 until 6 pm, Wednesday from 9 until 5 pm, and on Thursday from 9 until 4 pm.

Are You Using VIDEO in Your Real Estate Business?

Oct. 7, 2013
Categorized in: Technology

Are you using video in your real estate business?

If you aren't you are missing a terrific opportunity and a competitive edge, plus getting more traffic to your website and higher ranking on the Search Engines. And with YouTube being owned by Google, your visibility will be significantly enahnced if you post your videos on YouTube (read more below about how popular YouTube has gotten, now the 2nd most used search engine).

A number of the Southern California Chapter of CRS members use video regularly. Here are some tips to get you started:

Tips for Creating Videos:

1. Have a script or outline with a clear message

2. Use a tripod or monopod

3. Good lighting

4. External microphone

5. Good eye contact (depending on the video)

6. Short – less than 2 minutes

7. Don’t talk in a monotone – be conversational

8. Don’t say too much or talk non-stop

9. Don’t take videos on trash day

10. Done is better than PERFECT

11. Practice makes “perfect”

12. Make videos “timeless” whenever possible

 

Types of Videos:

1. Community/Neighborhood tours

2. Listings – interior AND exterior

3. Tourist attractions

4. Restaurants and Shopping

5. Local Fairs, Festivals, Events

6. Area Businesses and interviews with business owners

7. Things to do/sights to see

8. FAQs

9. Tutorials – How to…

10. You and Your Business – overview

11. Your Services

12. Market Updates – local market conditions and reports

 

Distribution of Videos:

1. Individual YouTube Channel

2. Social media (e.g., Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn)

3. Video Email systems – My Video Talk Studio (fee), BombBomb (fee), EyeJot (free)

4. Post video on your website and blog and embed in specific blog articles

5. Emails to clients (current and past), prospects, SOI

 

Why YouTube? (facts and figures from JeffBullas.com)

1. Google owns them! Best way to get on the top of Google SERPS

2. People love to watch video

3. 2nd most visited search engine

4. Mobile video viewing is growing, especially internationally – traffic from mobile viewing TRIPLED in 2011

5. 60 hours of video are uploaded every minute, or one hour of video is uploaded to YouTube every second (2012 statistic).

6. Over 800 million unique users visit YouTube each month

7. Over 4 billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube

8. 70% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US

9. YouTube is localized in 39 countries and across 54 languages

11. In 2011 YouTube had more than 1 trillion views (almost 140 views for every person on Earth)

12. YouTube mobile gets 300 MILLION views per day

 

Consumer Tip - Reducing Allergens in the Home

Sep. 4, 2013
Categorized in: Consumer Tips

The Southern California Chapter of CRS and Pillar to Post Inspection Services, one of our sponsors and a National sponsor of the Council of Residential Specialists (CRS), are pleased to provide the following CONSUMER TIP

CONTROLLING ALLERGENS IN THE HOME

Household allergens can cause a variety of symptoms in many people, including sneezing, watery eyes, coughing, and shortness of breath. Allergens may also be a contributing cause of asthma, especially in children. However, it is possible to minimize the effects of such allergens by taking steps to control their presence and dispersal in the home.

The most common household allergens include dust mites, mold, mildew, pollen, and pet dander (dried flakes of skin shed by pets, particularly cats and dogs). Effective control relies on a combination of measures that, when used properly, will reduce the levels of allergens and allergen exposure.


  • Increase ventilation to the home. Opening windows whenever possible promotes good air exchange and will reduce the concentration of airborne allergens, especially pet dander.
  • Wash bedding and stuffed toys once a week in hot water to control dust mites and cat allergens in particular.
  • Keep pets clean and well groomed to control dander.
  • Use mite-resistant mattress covers and pillow covers and wash these frequently.
  • Dust and vacuum regularly, and use microfiltration or HEPA filter vacuum bags. The jury is still out on whether bagless vacuum cleaners are more effective in removing allergens than those that require bags; some studies indicate that many bagless vacuums are not sealed tightly enough and can actually make the problem worse. Wearing a dust mask while dusting and vacuuming is also a good way to reduce exposure.
  • Consider removing wall-to-wall carpeting and replacing them with easily-cleaned area rugs, particularly in bedrooms.
  • Make sure bathrooms, especially those with showers, are well ventilated. Open the window and use exhaust fans that vent to the outdoors to prevent moisture buildup, which can encourage mold and mildew growth.
  • If possible, reduce indoor humidity to 50% or less by using room dehumidifiers or the dehumidifier feature available with many central air conditioning systems.
  • Clean or replace furnace and central air conditioner filters on a regular basis. Make sure that air conditioner drain pans are clean and that they allow the water to drain properly.


Taking these simple steps can mean breathing easy in a healthier, more comfortable home.

Article courtesy of Pillar To Post Professional Home Inspection


Q3 Educational Meeting Wrap-up on the CA Housing Market 2013

Sep. 2, 2013
Categorized in: Meetings

The Q3 Educational and Networking Luncheon was a huge success with many new members and new CRSs attending.

OSCAR WEI from C.A.R. presented an analysis of the California Housing Market, adn in particular what's going on in our Southern California Region

In addition to our traditional 50/50 raffle to benefit Habitat for Humanity, the Election of the 2014 Officers was held - the following were voted into office and will be installed at the Q4 Meeting in San Diego in November 2013:

Barbara DuDeck - President

Susie Hafer - President Elect

Melanie McShane - Treasurer

Emily Link - Secretary

Below you will find a summary of the slides shared by Oscar in his presentation - these data may be useful to you in your listing presentations with potential sellers. The full presentation can be found on the C.A.R. Site for members.


CA Housing Market 2013 Update_Meeting Summary by Jeff Dowler

CRS 200 Business Planning & Marketing Class THIS WEEK!

Aug. 27, 2013
Categorized in: Classes

IT'S NOT TOO LATE...

The Southern California Chapter of CRS and the Southwest Riverside County Association of REALTORS present CRS 200 BUSINESS PLANNING AND MARKETING on August 29 and 20, 2013 in Murrieta CA

INSTRUCTOR:  Mark Given, CRS

WHERE: SRCAR, 26529 Jefferson Avenue, Murrieta, CA

Here's what you'll learn!!

— Develop a business plan to focus your business and start making educated financial decisions
— Determine financial goals to create a budget and increase your profits to last through retirement
— Create a marketing plan that works with your objectives to get your listings sold
— Identify action plans to implement that will work for you to achieve long-term personal and professional goals

COST:

Members of SRCAR, CDAR or VVAR can take this class for $60 as a member benefit. Non-members may take the class for $200, with further discounts for members of the Southern California Chapter of CRS - see our website

NOTE - You MUST register directly with SRCAR even if you are a member of one of the other Boards.

 

 


CRS 200 Business Planning and Marketing 2-Day Course August 2013 by Jeff Dowler

Consumer Tip - Safe at Homes: SMOKE ALARMS, from Pillar to Post

Aug. 26, 2013
Categorized in: Consumer Tips

The Southern California Chapter of CRS and Pillar to Post Inspection Services, on of our sponsors and also a National Sponsor of CRS is pleased to share to following sfety tips

 

SAFE AT HOME: SMOKE ALARMS

Smoke alarms are an important defense against injury or death in house fires. The National Fire Protection Association states that nearly two-thirds of home fire fatalities happen in homes with non-working or missing smoke detectors. Most building codes now require smoke detectors in all residential structures, which has resulted in a steep drop in fire- and smoke-related deaths. 

Homeowners should check with their local public safety office or fire department for specific information on these requirements. 

As in real estate, location is important! Smoke alarms should be in installed every bedroom, outside every sleeping area, and on each level of the home. 

 

Alarms should be placed high on a wall or on the ceiling. It’s best to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for placement. High, peaked ceilings have dead air space at the top; in these instances smoke alarms should be placed no closer than 3 feet from the highest point. 

 

For areas close to the kitchen, use a detector with a “hush button” that can be used tosilence nuisance alarms triggered by cooking smoke or steam. Alternatively, considerinstalling a photoelectric alarm, which is better at detecting smoldering fires (vs. flames)near the kitchen. Never remove the unit’s battery to stop or prevent nuisance alarms. 

 

There are two primary types of smoke alarm technology: ionization and photoelectric. According to the National Fire Protection Association, ionization alarms are more responsive to flames, while photoelectric alarms are more sensitive to smoldering fires.For the most comprehensive protection, both types or a combination unit should be installed. 

 

Alarms should be tested monthly. It’s helpful to put a reminder in your calendar to do this on the first or last day of the month, for example. The units have a test button that will sound the alarm for a brief time when pressed. Any alarm that fails to sound should have the battery replaced. If the test button fails with a new battery, replace the entire detector immediately. Monthly testing is also an ideal time to dust off the unit so that it continues to work properly. 

 

Replace the batteries at least once a year. A common rule of thumb is to do this when changing to or from Daylight Saving Time in fall and spring. Some alarms come with 10-year batteries; for these, follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for battery
replacement. Remember, a non-working alarm is no better than no alarm at all. 

If the alarms are hard-wired to the home’s electrical system, make sure they are interconnected for maximum effectiveness – meaning that if one alarm is triggered, all of the others will sound as well. Any hard-wired alarms, interconnected or not, should be installed by a licensed electrician for safety and proper operation.

 

 

New CRSs in Southern California Q1 and Q2 2013

Aug. 8, 2013
Categorized in: Chapter News

THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA CHAPTER OF CRS IS PLEASED TO CONGRATULATE THE NEW CRSs in SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA AND OUR CHAPTER FOR Q1 and Q2 2013!!

 

Linda C Domis - Whittier
Frederick P Hayes - Fullerton
Lawrence E Mason - Victorville
Cecil Volsch - Apple Valley
Fred A Sabine - Northridge
Richard Chamberlin - Palm Springs
MeiLing Wang - Apple Valley
Sandy Cummings - Apple Valley
Dennis J Shaw - Victorville
Bess Kline - Hesperia
Beverly A Bower - Apple Valley
Deborah Light - Apple Valley
Matthew B Sturkie - Apple Valley

Steven Crossen - Riverside
Jason Sturman - Los Angeles
Reyne Stapelmann - Santa Barbara
Michelle M Bassett - Hemet
Sue Dearing - Victorville
David Yoder - San Diego
Lisa Ancich - Whittier
Susan Piazza - Newport Beach
John Hendrick - La Quinta
Leslie E Carmichael - Newport Beach
Lori R Robnett - Huntington Beach

3rd Quarterly Education and Networking Meeting for SoCalCRS in Arcadia CA August 9, 2013

Aug. 5, 2013
Categorized in: Meetings

The Southern California Chapter of CRS is pleased to sponsor our Q3 REALTOR Educational and Networking Luncheon with Election of our 2014 Officers

 

WHEN:  Friday August 9, 2013

WHERE: Embassy Suites, 211 E. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, CA

WHAT: Speaker OSCAR WEI from C.A.R. will share his thoughts on the "California Housing Market Outlook"

 

WHAT A GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO GATHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE HOUSING MARKET THAT YOU CAN USE IN YOUR FARMING, LISTING PRESENTATIONS, AND DISCUSSIONS WITH BUYERS

REGISTER ONLINE with a credit card or DOWNLOAD THE FORM below and mail in with your check. You may register at the event space permitting

 

Real Estate Education and Networking Meeting - Arcadia-Pasadena 2013 by Jeff Dowler

The CRS IDEA NETWORK - A Terrific FREE Resources for CRS Members

Jul. 25, 2013
Categorized in: Social Media

The Southern California Chapter of CRS wants all its members who are CRSs to be aware of the CRS Idea Network.

You MUST be a Member of CRS, even if you are not a Chapter Member, in order to access this free repository of information to help you grow your business and enhance your skills.

 

The Council of Residential Specialists is pleased to introduce the CRS Idea Network, an online social learning platform that allows CRS members to learn from industry experts who freely share content they have created for their businesses.

The CRS Idea Network aims to create a more interactive experience among members and provide greater access to timely and relevant content in various multimedia formats, including videos, photos, news articles and business forms.


Content contributors include CRS instructors, Sell-a-bration® speakers and Legends Series presenters. As a CRS Member, you can post questions on specific topics, follow your favorite authors and posts, "share" or "hi-five (like)" content that you enjoy, and quickly find topics that you are interested in using the platform's search tools.  

 

Access the CRS Idea Network today.  Log in at www.crs.com, select the blue Resources button at the top right of the home page and then select the CRS Idea Network button from within the Resources page.
 

CRS 210 - Building an Exceptional Customer Service Referral Business September 2013

Jul. 25, 2013
Categorized in: Classes

The Southern California Chapter of Certified Residential Specialists (CRS) and the Victor Valley Association of REALTORS are pleased to offer the 2-day CRS 210 core class, BUILDING AN EXCEPTIONAL CUSTOMER SERVICE REFERRAL BUSINESS with CRS Instructor and Past CRS National President, FRANK SERIO.

The class will be held on September 9 and 10 at the Victor Valley Association of REALTORS Office at 11890 Hesperia Road, Hesperia, CA.

The cost if $60 (as a member benefit) for VVAR members. Memebers of CDAR and SRCAR can also take this course for only $60. All others $200

Download the form below to register - you may FAX the form to VVAR at 760-244-5589  or EMAIL to EO@VVAR.com. You may also mail in the form to VVAR at 11890 Hesperia Road, Hesperia, CA  92345

 


CRS 210 BUILDING AN EXCEPTIONAL CUSTOMER SERVICE REFERRAL BUSINESS in Hesperia California Sept 2013 by Jeff Dowler

Help for Consumers - How to Hire a HandyMan

Jul. 18, 2013
Categorized in: Consumer Tips

The Southern California Chapter of CRS and Pillar to Post, our local Chapter sponsor as well as a National CRS sponsor, are pleased to share these tips on hiring a handyman

HELP FOR HOMEOWNERS: CHOOSING A HANDYMAN

Whether it’s a big project such as a bathroom remodel, something small like putting up
shelves, or repairs and routine maintenance, many homeowners turn to handymen to
get the job done. It used to be that everyone knew “a guy down the street who can do
everything”, but these days finding a qualified, professional, and reliable handyman can
be a real challenge. Here are some tips for homeowners to ensure that they have the
right person for the job:

1. MAKE SURE THEY ARE QUALIFIED FOR THE WORK
Certain projects require specific skills that all handymen may not have. You will
of course want to know that they have the qualifications and experience to do the
job. In addition, many states require persons performing certain work to be
licensed; electrical and plumbing often fall into this category. Check with your
state on whether such licenses are required and verify the status of the
contractor’s license if it applies.

2. ASK FOR REFERENCES
Request at least two local references from previous customers. The handyman
should be willing to do this without hesitation. Then, contact those references!
Ask about the quality of the work, timeliness, professionalism, and how the
handyman handled any changes that may have occurred during the course of the
project. Also ask how satisfied they were with the work overall.

3. CHECK OUT ONLINE REVIEWS
Online review sites such as Yelp and Google Places can offer insights into what
kind of experience people have had with specific handymen. These types of
reviews can be helpful in getting an overall impression, but a straight “thumbs
up/thumbs down” review may not provide the information you’re looking for.
Membership sites such as Angie’s List are another good source of reviews.

4. VERIFY INSURANCE COVERAGE
Liability insurance is always a good idea. If the handyman or another worker is
injured while working on your property, you may be held liable for medical costs.
Ask for evidence of coverage before agreeing to any work. Uninsured handymen
often charge less for their services because they lack the overhead expense of
insurance, but it could cost you in the long run.

5. GET WRITTEN ESTIMATES AND A CONTRACT
Ideally, ask three handymen for written estimates for the work you have in mind.
Be sure that each estimate contains enough detail so that you can make a
comparison between them. For example, are the specified materials of the same
quality? Does the cost include cleanup and hauling away any debris or
old/broken items? Read all contracts carefully and be sure to ask about anything
that you are unsure of.

6. DETERMINE THE PAYMENT SCHEDULE BEFORE YOU SIGN
Beware if you are asked to pay for the entire job up front – this is not an accepted
business practice and could leave you open to fraud. Handymen will often ask for
50% when the contract is signed, which will allow them to purchase materials for the job and assure them that you are committed. Be sure to request receipts for all payments.

Courtesy of Pillar to Post Inspection Services

CRS 200 Business Planning and Marketing Class in Murrieta CA

Jul. 13, 2013
Categorized in: Classes

The Southern California Chapter of CRS and the Southwest Riverside County Association of REALTORS present CRS 200 BUSINESS PLANNING AND MARKETING on August 29 and 20, 2013 in Murrieta CA

INSTRUCTOR:  Mark Given, CRS

WHERE: SRCAR, 26529 Jefferson Avenue, Murrieta, CA

Here's what you'll learn!!

— Develop a business plan to focus your business and start making educated financial decisions
— Determine financial goals to create a budget and increase your profits to last through retirement
— Create a marketing plan that works with your objectives to get your listings sold
— Identify action plans to implement that will work for you to achieve long-term personal and professional goals

COST:

Members of SRCAR, CDAR or VVAR can take this class for $60 as a member benefit. Non-members may take the class for $200, with further discounts for members of the Southern California Chapter of CRS - see our website

NOTE - You MUST register directly with SRCAR

 

 

CRS 200 Business Planning and Marketing 2-Day Course August 2013 by Jeff Dowler

FREE Legal Education for REALTORS in San Diego September 2013

Jul. 12, 2013
Categorized in: Meetings

The Southern California Chapter of CRS is pleased to offer a FREE legal education and networking event

WHEN:  September 18 from 10 am until 1pm

WHERE:  San Marcos Community Services Department, 3 Civic Center Drive, San Marcos, CA  92069 in the "Dining Room"

WHAT:  Real estate Attorney TOM WAGNER will present legal advice on (1) multiple offer; (2) liquidated damges in offers on non-owner occupied residences, and (3) pocket listings.

FREE event ~ FREE parking ~ FREE food

RSVP now as space is limited

ALEX SHADPOUR at (858) 761-1167 or Shadpour@gmail.com

A special thank you to Alex, our San Diego AVP, for coordinating this timely event for area agents.

We also want to thank our sponsors, Hallmark Escrow, Coast Cities Escrow, and Wells Fargo.

 

 

FREE Real Estate Attorney Presentation in San Diego in Sept 2013 for REALTORS

Q3 Educational and Networking Luncheon for REALTORS - California Housing Market Outlook

Jul. 11, 2013
Categorized in: Meetings

The Southern California Chapter of CRS is pleased to sponsor our Q3 REALTOR Educational and Networking Luncheon with Election of our 2014 Officers

 

WHEN:  Friday August 9, 2013

WHERE: Embassy Suites, 211 E. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, CA

WHAT: Speaker OSCAR WEI from C.A.R. will share his thoughts on the "California Housing Market Outlook"

 

REGISTER ONLINE with a credit card or DOWNLOAD THE FORM below and mail in with your check. You may register at the event space permitting

 

Real Estate Education and Networking Meeting - Arcadia-Pasadena 2013 by Jeff Dowler

Tax Strategies Class Follow-up

Jun. 21, 2013
Categorized in: Classes

The Southern California Chapter of CRS sponsored a free TAX STRATEGIES Class on June 18 offered by CPAs Amanada Han and Matt MacFarland with Keystone CPA.

Keystone CPA offers a range of services including tax strategy planning and their overview of the key things REALTORS should think about and plan for in their tax planning strategy to legally pay the least amount of tax was a great help.

A special thanks to AKEX SHADPOUR, the San Diego AVP, for coordinating this informative event for all area REALTORS.

Here are the highlights...but of course CHECK WITH YOUR CPA and do not rely on these notes to help you prepare your taxes or determine your allowable deductions

The issues that guide whether an expense is deductible are:

1. Is it ordinary for the business?

2. Is it necessary?

Home Office Deduction

Is not necessarily a red flag for an audit

There are changes in how to do calculation and to simplify SF, etc.

Does not matter how close your home office is to your brokerage

Utilities and improvements may also be deducted (proportionally)

Does not have to be a fully enclosed room

Income Shifting

Relatives helping in business could result in some deductible business expenses – income bracket may be different (e.g., kids) – proportional related to how much is business related

Vacation and Travel

Can get partial write-off for business portion of vacation

If MAJORITY of trip is business related (50%+) can deduct 100% in terms of travel, etc. – talk with tax advisor before you leave. Need to set up the business portion of the trip (appts. etc.) in advance. Needs to be a planned trip re: business activities.  

Vehicle Deductions

Standard mileage (USE APPS) for business purposes OR actual expenses (includes depreciation)

Still need to track miles even if do actual expenses

Retirement Contributions

Great opportunity for retirement accounts – work with tax advisor because of the advantages for business owners

Health Savings Account

Tax deduction for money going in and use the money for a wide range of items.

Money you pull out is not taxable

There are limits to amount you can contribute

In addition to your health insurance premiums

 

The important question to ask your tax advisor is HOW can I deduct this, not CAN I deduct this!!

 Check out Keystone CPA if you are in need of accountant and tax advisory services.

KeystoneCPA.com

(877) 975-0975

Watch for more information on our next networking/education event in the San Diego area in September!

 

Consumer Tip - Cool Off and Save Money, from Pillar to Post

Jun. 13, 2013
Categorized in: Consumer Tips

The Southern California Chapter of Certified Residential Specialists (CRS) is pleased to share this Consumer Tip from Pillar to Post Home Inspectors, one of our sponsors and a National Sponsor of CRS.

Summer's heat is less welcome inside the home than out. Air conditioning is the first way many people think of to cool off, but there are other steps homeowners can take to help keep cool without the high energy consumption associated with air conditioning.

Close the window coverings on south- and west-facing sides of the home early in the morning and keep them closed until dusk. If the outside-facing sides of the window coverings are white, they'll reflect the heat and reduce temperature buildup even more. Use ceiling fans to move air around, which will make the room feel several degrees cooler. Be sure to adjust the rotation of the fan to its summer setting, so that the air blows down into the room. Portable fans are effective, inexpensive, and convenient, and can be placed almost anywhere additional air circulation is desired.

In the kitchen, give the stove a rest and use the barbecue or microwave whenever possible. Use the dishwasher at night and set it for non-heated drying. Similarly, laundry can be done in the evening instead of at the height of the day's heat. For both dishes and laundry, wash full loads. You'll save on energy and the house will stay cooler, too.

Everywhere in the house, turn off unnecessary lights, even CFLs. Use power strips for computers, televisions, etc. and switch them off when those items aren't being used. "Smart" power strips have a combination of always-on outlets and switchable outlets, allowing some items plugged into the strip to stay on while others are shut off.

If air conditioning is warranted, there are ways to maximize cooling without lowering the temperature setting unnecessarily. Positioning a fan near a window air conditioner will help distribute the cool air over a larger area. Providing some shade can help an outside air conditioner compressor use less energy. Also, be sure to clean or change filters according to the manufacturer's instructions to help ensure your unit is running at its best. If you're considering a new air conditioner, look for models with the Energy Star label. Newer air conditioners are far more efficient than units just 8-10 years old. Using an inexpensive programmable thermostat with your air conditioning system is another good way to regulate the temperature throughout the day, especially while no one is at home.

These simple ideas will help homeowners save money, prevent wasted energy, and stay cool and comfortable all summer long.
 

Mid-Year 2013 Message from SoCal CRS President Jim Ezell

Jun. 12, 2013
Categorized in: Chapter News

A MESSAGE FROM JIM EZELL...

Half of 2013 has surged by!  It seems like yesterday I was setting my goals. Does anyone else feel that the year is flying by? So much has happened.

Sell-a-Bration in Las Vegas. It was a string of informational meetings and interesting speakers. The networking opportunities were terrific. Who can forget the guy with the snow skis from Colorado?

The Washington D.C. Mid-Year meetings were action packed. It was interesting that almost every State had a lack of inventory. I was able to spend a lunch with Barbara DuDeck, our 2013 President Elect. She is so focused on establishing her team for next year. Marlene Bridges was appointed to Membership Committee at National. Jeff Dowler and Mike Duncan were elected RVPs for 2014 and 2015, and Deborah Kniss was honored with a new 2-year position on the Board of Directors beginning November 2013.

CRS Awareness Week is set for June 24-28. Jeff has posted it on our site and you can read more about the free webinar opportunities during this week on our SoCalCRCBlog.com site.

Special Kudos to Alex Shadpour, our AVP in San Diego. He had several events that have drawn people and interest to our Chapter. His Bowling Night was a big hit. The San Diego Trade Show had lots of interest. San Fernando Valley Trade show is next.

Mike Duncan has put on several successful classes. CRS 210 in Murrieta had over 120 people. Way to go Mike.

How is everyone coping with the inventory shortage? It is a good time to be a listing agent. My local association is cracking down on MLS violations.

We will be able to take a quick breath as summer arrives. It is vacation time for many. REALTORS® are always busy. Take care.

Jim

Southern California Chapter of CRS President for 2013

 

SoCalCRS Blog

Blog by Jeff Dowler
Encinitas, California

For REALTORS who are serious about their business!! An informational site for all CRS members, and candidates for the CRS designation, in the Southern California CRS Chapter region (from north of San Luis Obispo to Bakersfield, south to San Diego and inland to the California Desert). Members of the SoCalCRS Chapter and non-members are encouraged to ask questions, post comments, and become active in our Chapter. We hope you will enjoy learning more about our Southern California CRS Chapter and the value of having the CRS (Certified Residential Specialist) designation, and being a Chapter member.

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