Real Estate Market Directions and Investing Made Simple

Forecasting the short term direction of residential home values, whether nationally or in a specific geographic region, may be one of the most difficult tasks. The fact that home values will rise in the long run is a given, as inflation is a part of the make up of our economy. So, how can you tell when a real estate market has hit that peak or trough in a cycle? Well, first, although you may hear the phrase ‘history repeats itself’ keep in mind that very often in real estate the symptoms repeat but usually not the causes. This is the main reason why the assumption that a downward trend might last four years historically is irrelevant to current or future corrections.What drove the most recent boom in many of the ‘hot’ markets was emotion, pure and simple. Whether it was the fear of feeling the need to buy a home before one could no longer afford it or the greed that motivated people to invest at any cost, as real estate was perceived as an investment with which one just can’t lose, the result was the same, grossly overinflated home values. Exacerbating the problem were other factors including excessively loose and irresponsible lending practices along with historically low interest rates, real estate professionals more concerned with commissions than offering responsible advice, and a lack of judgment from governmental agencies that could certainly have curtailed the problem instead of ultimately needing to play ‘clean up’. The mainstream media had an enormous part to play in the boom. Sensationalism sells, and most of the focus was given to economic reports that were unidirectional. The general public bases many of their decisions to purchase, or not, on industry professionals and confirm this with what their favorite news anchor has to say. Unfortunately, most of the data reported in the media was biased and came directly from the real estate and mortgage industry.Now, we hear reports on how real estate prices have bottomed, yet many analysts are predicting more inventory and higher interest rates. How is it that something that seems so simple can find well-informed industry professionals sitting on both sides of the fence? Basically, for people employed in a real estate profession there is an inherent need for optimism when one’s profession revolves around the need for delivering sound advice to potential home owners. If a real estate salesperson or a loan officer was to greet a customer and then proceed to tell that customer that they will be able to buy a home for less money in six months, would that industry professional have a reasonable shot at earning the customer’s business?As you read this, consider your own local real estate market. Were new jobs added at a high rate through the boom (NOT considering the explosive growth in real estate related professions!)? Was there an inordinate amount of people buying on speculation (now you can include the real estate professionals)? Were the homes in your market incredibly undervalued throughout most of the boom? Did your area suddenly become recognized as a new center for industry, commerce, or resorts? If the answers to these questions are no then the foundation for the phenomenal increase in values was weak, at best.There were certainly areas where significant growth was warranted, like coastal properties along the Atlantic and Pacific seaboard, resort areas with international appeal such as Lake Tahoe, Aspen and Vail, Hawaii, areas that had seen a large increase in new jobs and growing commerce centers, and also areas that were economically stable and had great potential for investors to obtain a positive cash flow with limited risk. Many of these areas experienced higher paced growth and some still saw values increase above a healthy pace but for the most part were safer markets.In California, we currently are seeing a rise in home sales. Most of what is currently selling are foreclosures, short sales and homes at auction. It’s my belief that there’s a large seasonal influence and that the trend will be positive through August. When Fall arrives we will see a decrease in buyers, as always. Potential buyers will realize that the enormous supply of inventory will continue to grow, interest rates are likely to increase, and home values will decline. This will be the ultimate time to buy. Sellers, mostly banks that need inventory moved out of their REO, will become HIGHLY motivated to accept very low offers as they will all want to start 2009 with cleaner books. As these properties sell they will contribute to the lowering of values. We’ll still see media reporting information behind the curve and many buyers will be scared until reality hits around the normal start of the 2009 buying season, let’s say March. This will be enough time for the less-informed to see prices legitimately on the rise and will have given them enough time to watch investors bottom feed.After March 2009 I see values correcting to more appropriate values rather quickly as they will have certainly over-corrected to the negative by then. Foreclosures will be much less common starting in 2009 for several reasons, such as loan modifications will be in place, most people will be in healthier loans by refinancing, and simply the fact that foreclosures are less likely when money is to be made (appreciating home values). Also, lending guidelines will begin to loosen a little. Those, too, have slightly over-corrected in response to losses and it will dawn on investors that once again, mortgage backed securities may offer a reasonably safe and sound investment choice.Of course, as we live in this great, capitalistic, free society, we will be sure to experience similar market swings in the future. Where there is money to be made there are also people willing to take inordinate risk and throw caution to the wind. Greed will not go away. Being ahead of the curve, recognizing the tell-tale signs, and using sound judgment will always be the safest and most profitable approach. Real estate investing is, and will remain one of the most powerful wealth-building tools available to anyone willing to do their homework.

Email Marketing SIMPLY Revealed

Email marketing is a form of direct mail marketing using electronic mail to deliver your message to your audience. There are a number of reasons why email marketing is the preferred method of delivering direct mail.

The power of email marketing is in building an opt-in list of email addresses which you can market to via email.

To do this effectively you must have an autoresponder. An autoresponder is a program that you use in conjunction with your email list to effectively market to your audience. This tool is used to automatically email your customers at predetermined time intervals, with predetermined email messages and in a predetermined sequence of email message delivery. Specifically it can be used to confirm subscription to your email list, unsubscribe emails, and for ongoing communication and follow-up with your list.

Why is this important? Imagine having an email list of thousands. Now imagine having to manually, confirm subscriptions, unsubscribe and send emails to an email list of thousands on a regular basis. Not to mention determining who gets what emails, when to send those emails and also when not to send the emails that have already received a response. Again, imagine having to do this for thousands of email addresses, even if you did this for 100 email addresses it may still be too much for you to do alone. You would never get anything else done. An autoresponder handles all of this and more for you. I’m sure you will want to take advantage of this wonderful piece of technology.

Email marketing helps you become more effective and efficient with the following:

Selling to new prospects
Selling to existing customers
Promoting and advertising your or your affiliates product, service or business
Provide your customers with information, updates and upcoming events
For surveys, polls and other customer feedback
Reasons why email marketing is a direct marketers dream are as follows:
Cheaper to deliver

Eliminates the fulfillment cost of paper, envelopes and postage when sending direct mail
Easier to deliver
No waiting. No trips to the Post Office.
Quicker to deliver
Delivery is done at the push of a button. Therefore, you can email a list of thousands and as frequently as you feel comfortable.
Targeting Capabilities
Gives you the ability to target your emails by prospect, customer, interest, source and other possible distinctions.
Ability to track results of email
Track and measure the success of your email campaign. Learn what works and what does not by your CTR (click through rate). Determine what adjustments need to be made to have your emails convert better.
Create traffic to your website
When you send emails to your list you can provide links to send your prospects to anywhere you want on the web.
Builds familiarity, loyalty, trust and credibility
Your email list gets to know you better by establishing an ongoing relationship with you as you inform, entertain and provide value to your list.
An environment friendly paperless process
Not only can you save some trees, you can also save yourself some space in your office. The more files on your laptop, the less files on your desktop or in your file cabinet.
Things to consider when email marketing:

Spamming is sending unsolicited commercial email (UCE) and unsolicited bulk email (UBE). Most folks views on UCE and UBE range from cautious, for various reasons, to just not being interested. Most SPAM gets blocked, ignored or deleted. To put this in perspective, ask yourself how many unsolicited emails have you read, commercial, bulk or otherwise? The conversion rate for spamming is not worth the risk for the trouble it can cause you. Spamming is against the law (See the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003) which can result in imprisonment, fines, a tarnished reputation and possibly a prohibition of working in the area of email marketing. The practice of “permission marketing” helps prevent you from being accused of spamming. With permission marketing you get permission from your prospect to email them. This is most effectively done through a double opt-in method. With this method, the prospect initially opts in to your email list and then a confirmation email is sent to your prospect. Your prospect must then confirm subscription to your email before your will begin emailing them. However, at anytime your prospect wishes not to receive your emails you must provide them in every email with a link to unsubscribe from your email list.
Constructing your email
You want to construct a well crafted email that is going to get results. This is done by making sure that from the subject line to the post script your email is purposefully written to get results. Next, you shape, hone and fine-tune your emails to always increase your conversion rate, on an ongoing basis.
The basics of email marketing are building a list, crafting a message to that list and making sure your messages are received while doing all you possibly can to get your messages read and converted. The more advanced aspects of email marketing come in the form of tracking, analyzing and measuring the results of your email campaign.
An email marketing campaign is going to generate inquires, feedback, opt-ins, downloads, and sales. You can effectively handle these request with an autoresponder, there is no need to work harder than you must. If you want to save time and money then email marketing is very important and essential to your success when marketing via the internet.

The Different Kinds of Email Marketing Solutions You Must Learn

With the three types of email marketing, businesses have an organized way of communicating the right message content to their customers and prospect persons.

Cyber business firms opt in email marketing because it is the cheapest way to advertise and promote their products and services. For starters, a simple description of email marketing is when you send business messages that aim to endorse and present merchandise as well as an invitation to sign up for services offered to potential clients. This marketing strategy requires a long list of emails of people that you wish to target. Let’s assume that you want to target a particular group of people, say, young adults ages 20 to 29 in a specific geographical location then you have to acquire those emails from recommended providers. But, the most important thing to put in mind would be the content contained in the messages sent to these people.

There are three types of email marketing solutions are available for use: Direct Email, Retention Email, Co-Advertising Emails.

Direct emails aim to sell your products and services directly. Your letter would directly address the customer and urge him/her to purchase and avail of your wares. Even if the recipient does not buy from you immediately, you have to be able to maintain open lines of communication so you can continue on with your promotions and updates. The objective of email marketing solutions is to turn readers into customers and turn customers into loyal customers.

Retention emails are sent to let your previous customers stay on your side. You already have their interest and how you keep them interested is all that matters. A beneficial possibility is that when you already developed the skill in creating good retention emails and the customer-oriented focus is there, chances are, your customers will share this quality service to their friends. This is also a part of your list building strategies wherein it becomes viral and the area of your possible customers become bigger.

Co-advertising emails are where your business gets to be promoted by other regular newsletters being sent all over the web. This way, you would not worry about other technicalities of production and distribution while rest is assured that your marketing is going all over the place.

So, for beginners who would want to work with email marketing, consider these three types when you send emails to your email marketing lists. Organize and systematize your strategy to make quality emails so as to not confuse your customers and potential clients just because you sent them the wrong email content. Put in mind that aside from your goal of making your email list longer and having bigger chances of landing on interested people, deliver a good content that addresses their benefits and not just yours.