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Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Posted at Saul's Notes by Saul Klein
Jul. 28, 2009

I have watched many struggle through this latest recession and real estate downturn, and I am reminded of what has always followed downturns in the past…upturns. I have heard many real estate professionals over my 35 years in this industry; as a broker, office manager, investor and educator, pray to be granted "one more boom." So many agents and brokers in the industry fail to take advantage of the "good times" and only come to the realization that they missed those good times after they are over. So have faith, the market will turn. That is not in question. What is in question is will you be ready to take advantage of the next swing up, for yourself and for your clients?

What makes me so confident that the good times are coming? History. Historically, real estate downturns lead recessions and lag behind in recovery (Real Estate and Business Cycles by Fred E. FoldVary. I have personally experienced this a number of times as a real estate broker. One of the most memorable was in the early 1980's. We had a "Savings and Loan Crisis," The government created the RTC (Resolution Trust Corporation), and folded one Savings and Loan into another…taking over massive amounts of properties and managing (or mismanaging) and disposing of them. The conventional wisdom at the time was that interest rates would never go below 10% again and that real estate was grossly overpriced and only fools would dare to buy. Most people now wish that they had purchased more real estate in the 1980s and held on to it through a few up turns since then. While we may not be at the bottom of the market yet, we are more likely than not, close to the bottom…taking into account geographic differences, in some areas, we may be at the bottom. Now is the time for many to buy…low prices, motivated (desperate) sellers, historically low long term interest rates, and for first time homebuyers, an $8,000 bonus from "Uncle Sam."

Not convinced? Let's examine the record. Tracking of business cycles began in the 1800s and there have been close to 30 measured cycles since the measuring and recording began. As sure as I have lived through downturns in the economy, I expect an upturn. I can't tell you when, but I am confident it will happen. Will you be ready for it?

Success requires planning. Old news. "Not having a plan is planning to fail." Do you have a business plan for your real estate business? Does it contain the essential elements such as a Sales Plan, a Technology Plan, a Marketing Plan, a Website Plan and a Budget? If not, your plan for success is, not uncommon unfortunately in this business, HOPE. HOPE is not a conscious choice, but absent real planning, it is the default choice…the choice you made by not planning. For many REALTORS®, they:

HOPE they will succeed

HOPE they'll get a listing

HOPE the buyer will make an offer

HOPE their sales skills will improve

HOPE their website is visited and generates leads

HOPE they close enough sales to pay the bills this month

While HOPE has its place, it is too passive a way to approach an aggressive, competitive business. Deliberate planning, discipline and commitment are essential elements for anyone who wants more out of a real estate career than a few sales a year…and yet many whom you meet in the business cannot articulate anything close to a systematic approach to selling.

Real estate is a sales business, and sales is all about numbers, ratios, and percentages. What systems and methods do you have in place that will allow you to improve your efforts and your results, week after week, month after month, year after year?

Here are a few HOPEFULLY helpful hints:

1. Create a business plan that is specific…specificity is the key to execution. Begin with your annual goals and break it down into the daily tasks required to get you to where you want to be at the end of the year.

2. Create a Sales Plan - How many contacts are required for each closing? If you are unaware of this personal statistic, you should begin to determine just what it is for you, and then, what you can do to improve on it. Contacts Create Contracts, so set about creating a plan that will maximize the number of contacts and the number of communications with each.

3. Create a Technology Plan that is consistent with your Business Plan. Be sure to establish a budget and a timeline for the integration of the technology into your daily practice.

4. Create a comprehensive, integrated Marketing Plan that includes conventional marketing and is tied to your internet marketing.

5. Create a Website Plan that takes advantage of the marketing power of your listings. A listing is a marketing asset and can be used to bring you buyers as well as other listings. Offered through Allison James is the Point2 Technologies Web Solution which is the best the industry has to offer, take advantage of it.

6. Create Budgets - for your business in general and for each listing.

6. Be Found. Create profiles on social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace. Use the power of the Internet to connect and reconnect you with people…"Contacts Create Contracts."

7. Take the new NAR Web 2.0 & Social Media Course for REALTORS® online course and begin the transition to a consumer population of Gen X and Gen Y buyers and sellers (http://ePRONAR.com).

8. Differentiate yourself from the competition. Your choice is "Be Different or Charge Less."

9. Become an e-PRO® and join a resource and referral network 40,000 strong.

10. Take advantage of NAR's Program Right Tools/Right Now. Amazing tools and values for discounts and even for free. Check it out.

I HOPE this has been helpful.


Saul Klein ePRO/GRI/CFP







Saul Klein

CEO, Point2 Technologies



User Comments

1. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Oct. 14, 2009

Has anyone had success with www.Marketleader.com ? We are considering using them for buyer leads. Kind of reminds me of Housevalues which I did not have much success with.

Also, has any e-pros heard of www.newhomenotebook.com?


2. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Carol Morrow
Oct. 22, 2009

Very inspiring! I am doing e-PRO now and am truly excited about taking the next step in marketing and learning all that I can about social networking.  What a great course!

3. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Dominick Schook
Oct. 30, 2009


You graduated from the USNA in '72. I enlisted that year and went to Great Lakes for boot camp. Served (proudly) aboard the USS New Orleans LPH-11. spent 10 months in Tonkin Gulf. We also went North into Haiphong Harbor, which we spent 93 days working 20hours per to de-mine the harbor. saw the POW'S fly home. Then was the recovery ship for SkyLab-3 astronauts( Bean-Garriott-Lousma). I had the honor and privilege to have met Ronald Reagan (as Governor) Also host ship in New Orleans ,LA.  for the Bi-centenial in'76. Also served aboard the USS Iwo Jima LPH-2 where we de-mined the Suez Canal, met Anwar Sadat. This is a great course, learning alot and thnaks with much gratitude. Go Navy...Fly Navy

4. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Judy Boone
Dec. 29, 2009

Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE!  I am so pleased to see the Realtor organizations taking a pro-active approach to help solve the housing crisis as well as banding together to bring our membership the tools of the new age w e-pro one line courses, and blogs like yours, Saul Klein, with networking from all across the country. We don't have to travel all over to conventions, which prevented me from courses in the past. I've been a Realtor over 31 ys an am so excited about the social/tech changes that lie head.

I became a Realtor in 1978, at the age of 24, joined WCR, Women's Council of Realts and became President in the early 90's. We disbanned shortly after that because the fashion luncheons were out and breakfast meetings were in, pagers then cell phones took over. We accomplished most of our goals by becoming more involved in the business and now enjoy the leadership of women Presidents in our local, State and National Boards.

I opened my Norfolk, VA office in 1989 and received the local Realtor's Lifetime Acheivement award in 2006, for changing the face of Hampton Roads with community involvement and re-delevopment. Everyone was hoping the blighted beachfront community Ocean View would turn, but belly aching can only go so far, someone needed to swing a hammer and put their money where their heart was!  Today, I enjoy a niche market of over 50% in my hometown community.

I also had a miraculous liver transplant in June of 2007 with the prayers and hope of the community I call "home." But, I had to fight for my own life, pray, hope and have faith in God, but I also, took neccessary action  to be admitted to the  #1 transplant hospital in the world to help pull me through. Because I was pro-active in my care, with assistance of my local doctor team, Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, FL saved my life with the full co-operation of the Almighty Father.  I received a child donor's liver and am taking advantage of everyday and everyway to make a complete comeback. I am living to see my grandchildren grow and what the uture holds for me in this business. But, I have to be pro-active. This down turn in the market is an opportunity for all Realtors and the public to learn and grow through educational resources to bring us current with market trends. Life is always better after a struggle. We must have hope, but we must take action! 

Yours, truly

Judy Boone, GRI, e-Pro, NAPBOP, Realtor owned & operated, Judy Boone Realty, Inc 809 E. Ocean View Ave., Norfolk, VA 23503 757-718-9191  judyboone@judyboonerealty.com


5. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Saul Klein
Dec. 29, 2009

Hi Judy,

Thanks for your contribution.

I lived in Norfolk from 1961 to 1964 and attended AzaleaGardens Jr. High School.


6. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Saul Klein
Dec. 29, 2009

Hi Dominick,

I remember the New Orleans. I think we may have deployed with her back in 1973.


7. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Trevor Mealham
Jan. 1, 2010

Dear Saul,

Your bloggs show great content, especially those childhood phrases,

I am based in the UK and predicted the housing market collapse here back in 2004, when I sold up my two offices. I could see FTB's being outbid by the "buy to let club".

I too beleive that the market will again return and for the last 4-5 years have planned and had built a UK mls platform. From our core software I have developed two products that I would like to roll out overseas via licence or partnership.

I am aiming to go to Inman Connect NYC 2010 in hope of showing the two products to other real estate professionals. I've invested heavily in both personal funds and time, But both tools I feel empower agents in their community and help engage agents to achieve a foot in the door to gaining instructions.

I respect the growth of Point2 and feel that oversea associations can be a very big plus. Additionally, I feel that this little old UK mls might just have a couple of special tools that could benefit others.

Would you have a spare 20 minutes.

Kind regards,


Trevor Mealham

INEA (The Independent Network of Estate Agents)

8. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Clara Herrera
Feb. 10, 2010

Thanks Saul for this inspiring message.

I need it that today.

9. Equity Investment Portfolio Management Program.

Written by:
Mar. 2, 2010

Dubai International Financial Center


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10. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Lebbaker
May. 1, 2010

I am still trying to set up a domain name. Can you help me? Also my new e-mail address?


11. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Judy Boone
Jul. 31, 2010

Saul, thanks for the post. I too attended Azalea, then Northside and graduated from Norview in 1971. If you ever come back for a visit, please hook up with me. Now we have reunions from all area schools at my family run new Ocean View Fishing Pier. Check it out at www.oceanviewfishingpier.com and my website www.judyboonerealty.com I am one of thise brokers that can work like I did when I first started in the biz. I have to go to my weekend Sat 2-4 and Sun 1-4 Open Houses. I have to bring home the bacon to pay the help! That's why they call us BROKERS! lol! This Girl from the hood is doing good. Give me a call and I'll tell you another plan for the area that will be launched very soon. It's top secret! 757-718-9191 Judy

12. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Judy Boone
Jul. 31, 2010

Give me a call. 757-718-9191 Judy Boone

13. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: John Reen
Sep. 16, 2010

Very inspiring!

14. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: job justin
Nov. 22, 2010

Thanks Saul for this inspiring message. nike air max pas cher, nike air max

15. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Written by: Ryan Harlan
May. 14, 2011

Hi Saul,

Thank you for your great post ! I once heard a wise man say, proper preparation when meets opportunity equals success.  I am preparing for the market turn now ! I wish everyone a great 2011 real estate year !

Thank you,


16. RE: Success in Real Estate Requires more than HOPE

Oct. 22, 2011

All I can say is Wow!  Thank you for your contribution.  It is very informative and inspiring.

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Saul's Notes

Blog by Saul Klein
San Diego, California

A collection of notes and observations by Saul Klein, CEO of Point2 Technologies and InternetCrusade.


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