Must Read If You Are Marketing By Carrier Route

We all got so granular over the past few years!  And that’s a good thing!

Rather than shotgunning our message all over God’s Green Earth (and paying a hefty toll for the privilege), we started looking at our marketplaces through a magnifying glass.  Instead of marketing by Zip Code, we started breaking down the Zips by Carrier Route.

Most Help-U-Sell offices refined their marketing targets down to 5 to 10 Carrier Routes, depending on turnover rate and budget (That usually works out to 3,000 to 8,000 households).   The problem is, since every Carrier Route has its own turnover rate, it became difficult to know what the OVERALL turnover rate was in your complete target.  Most Brokers just kinda guessed.

Does that make any sense?  You just spent all this time and energy carefully tearing your marketplace apart so that you could construct a productive target.  Instead of doing what most Brokers do (which is to guess or make the decision based on hearsay or gut), you based the whole process on FACTS.  Cold hard FACTS.  And now, you’re going to guess at the turnover rate within your target?  I think NOT!

So, here’s what you do:


Add up all of the households in all of your Carrier Routs, then add all of the houses that sold in the past 12 months in all of the Carrier Routes . . . . Then just divide Homes Sold (the small number) by Households (the large number).

Those of you in a Coaching Group can use this AMAZING number in the Market Analysis tab of your 12 Month Goal Setting Worksheet, here:


I sincerely hope this keeps you guys from guessing about your business!  And maybe the whole process will intrigue some into investigating the Coaching Group opportunity.  I hope so.  We’ve got openings.

Eight Things You Can Do To Get A Listing TODAY!

Here is a post from 2012.  The market was a little different back then.  We still had a lot of upside down homeowners, lots of Short Sales and quite a few REOs.  Still, there’s good stuff here.  Challenge yourself!  See if you can’t get one by nightfall!

Can you get a listing today?  I’m waiting . . . can you?  Let me rephrase the question:  If you were to be hung by the neck until dead at sunset if you didn’t get a listing today, could you get one?  I thought so.  Getting a Listing is something you can DO in real estate.  You can’t force a sale, you can’t force a closing . . . but you can DO a listing.  You can get one.  It is always within your power.

And today, more than ever, a listing is precious.  Inventories are so low right now and prices are inching (and in some cases, racing) upwards.  Multiple offers abound and the person with listings is in the driver’s seat.  But listings are also hard to come by.  Many potential sellers are sitting back, noticing the upcreep in prices and thinking: ‘If I just wait a few months maybe I won’t be so upside down . . . ‘

So, what can you do TODAY to get a listing?  Here are 8 ideas:

1.  Call all of your past clients.  It’s a simple dialogue:  you need their help.  Inventory is drying up, buyers are frantic to find something.  Have they heard of anybody thinking of selling?  I would be surprised if you didn’t uncover at least 1 listing lead for every 20 calls.

2.  Call all of your fence sitting, luke warm potential sellers and heat them up!   They’re not doing themselves any favors by waiting.  The bargains are disappearing rapidly and while they’re waiting for a few percentage points gain in equity, they’re missing opportunities.  Here – use this set of graphics from Help-U-Sell University:

I love that graphic.  Unfortunately, the improving market of the past four years has made it a bit irrelevant.  Today, if you want to heat up a fence sitting seller, work on where they want to go.  Spend an hour or two showing them houses, get them excited about moving.  And if they’re moving out of state, start that referral relationship early and have the other agent help get them motivated. 

3.  Pull all the expired listings for the LAST 12 MONTHS – that’s right, a full year’s worth – and drop them a note about the improving market, the scarcity of listings and the fact that you can save them money!

4.  Choose one of your buyer clients who is hot to trot but having trouble finding a suitable home.  Working with them, isolate the one or two perfect neighborhoods for them.  Then make a flyer with their photo and some humanizing detail,  saying they’re looking for a home in that neighborhood.  If you’d like to sell, contact Help-U-Sell.  And put your ETM on the back.  Deliver it however you’d like:  snail mail, Excel’s mailbox stuffer program, slide it under the doormat . . . although if you’re trying to beat the hangman at sunset, you’d better stick to doormats.

5.  Follow Kurt Steffien’s lead:  start cultivating probate attorneys.  They are certainly interested in being heroes to their estate clients, and will see your money saving (estate preserving) offer as a way to accomplish that.  In other words:  they get it.  And if you get one and do a good job, it’s not just one listing, it could be many.  For months and years to come.  Really.

6.  Work with Tony (today that’d be Alejandro, Mike or Soren) to build a landing page on your website to capture contact info on people wanting to know what their house is worth.  (By the way:  this home value landing page already exists on your website!  AND, it generates a report instantly so that the people who request it don’t have to wait for a response)  Then create a QR Code for it.  Have flyers made with nothing more than the QR Code and the words:  ‘See How Much Your Home Is Worth Today.’  Put them all over the place.

7.  Call every FSBO in the area and ask:  ‘If I were to find a buyer who made an offer that was acceptable to you, would you pay me a commission?’  (I know, I know . . .you guys usually choke when you have to say that word, but in this case it will serve you better than ‘Low Set Fee.’).  The answer will almost always be yes, because they’ve usually made the same deal with every other Realtor in town.  Quickly calculate what, say, 3% is (let’s assume it’s $4,500), and respond: ‘So if I find a buyer who makes an acceptable offer you’ll pay me 3% which is around $4,500 dollars, right?  Let me show you what I can do for you for just $3,950*.  I mean – I’m Help-U-Sell – you get my complete full service program for less than you’d pay some agent just to find you a buyer.  For $3,950*, I’ll help you refine your pricing (if necessary), do all the marketing, get you on dozens of websites, qualify all interested buyers, help you weigh the pros and cons of every offer and calculate your net proceeds, process all the paperwork and handle the details all the way to closing.  How’s that sound?’

(*Or whatever your Set Fee is.  By the way:  Commissions, whether percentage based of set fee, are always negotiable.)

8.  Call Jack Bailey and ask him what you should do.

This is July 5. (It’s actually August 9, but the principal still holds true)   The longest day of the year was, what?  A week and a half ago?  So you’ve got a few extra hours of daylight to get it done.  Go on now:  get out there and don’t come home until you have a signed listing agreement in your sweaty little hand.

*about that graphic:  For the arithmetically impaired: If you subtract the current value from the peak value of the first home you get $75,000. That’s the amount of the drop in value, what the homeowner ‘lost’. If you do the same for the second home you get $112,500. That drop is $37,500 more than the drop on the first home. Everything else being equal, that’s $37,500 less the buyer is going to have to mortgage. Translation: quit moping about what you ‘lost!’ Get out there and buy your dream home before it becomes unaffordable again.



Who remembers this?  What is HUSKA? Why is it important?

History Lesson:  One legendary Help-U-Sell Broker – who later became a Regional Director – used the ‘word’ to motivate and elevate her fellow brokers.  I believe there may have even been pins with the word on it. (If you have one, I’d love a picture).

That Broker/RD was Kris Hazard, who now lives in Hawaii.

And now, what does HUSKA mean or stand for?

Help-U-Sell Kicks %*S$!

Thanks John Powell and Maurine Grisso for remembering!

Last Chance! Market Well/ Save Big

Get In Gear!

Help-U-Sell Brokers, Friday is the last day to order your EDDM postcards in bulk for the next 3-4 months!

Your cost during this special Co-Op period is roughly HALF what it would be at any other time!

If you don’t order NOW, you’ll either be without or pay twice the cost until the next flight of Co-Op ordering is announced!

Go to: and look for ‘Office Co-Op’

For help, call me or Mike Paholke at Excel.



Get Off That Treadmill, You Hamster, You! (another message for ordinary real estate brokers)

How often have you heard it?  ‘Recruiting is the LIFEBLOOD of your real estate company!’ ‘Recruiting is the broker’s single most important job!’  ‘Recruit! Recruit! Recruit!’

Seems like we’re not even in the business of selling real estate anymore.  We’re in the business of providing a place where real estate agents can work.

If your business is driven by agents . . . that’s a definite case of the tail wagging the dog!

It wasn’t always that way.  Fifty years ago, real estate brokers were the business.  They worked hard to market themselves and become fixtures in the local community.  Sometimes, when they had more business than they could handle, they’d bring on an agent, to help.

But everything changed in the 70s when the franchises blossomed.  They showed brokers that every time they added an agent they increased the office’s reach into the community and expanded the office’s sphere of influence.  It was the birth of modern recruiting.

In the 80s, with success defined by the number of licenses held by the broker, recruiting warfare spread across the land.  Once someone figured out how to pay agents 100% of the commission on a sale, commission split became the only thing that mattered.  Splits rose higher and higher and company dollar fell lower and lower.

The contemporary residential real estate broker is little more than a beggar.  He begs agents to come to work for him and then begs them not to leave. He sweetens the deal with the only tool he has:  commission split.  With the lion’s share of the Gross going to pay agents . . . well, they don’t call ’em BROKErs fer nothin’!

It doesn’t have to be this way.  You can build your business on the power of your marketing rather than the number of bodies that occupy space under your roof.  But you must take control.

  1. Get back to reality with an attitude adjustment. It’s your business!  You took the risk, spent the money and you’re the one who squirms when it’s time to pay the bills.  Sure you love your agents, but they are the help. 
  2. Now that you’ve had an attitude adjustment, have a commission split adjustment. You are turning your office into a self-sustaining, lead generating machine.  Anyone who works for you will benefit from that and thus should be paid something unheard of today: a reasonable commission split!
  3. Take back control of your marketing. As commission splits rose to astounding heights, brokers in large measure shifted responsibility for marketing to agents.  Of course, very few agents actually invested in marketing and those who did marketed themselves, not your company.  You have to control the marketing to control the message and the leads that are created.  And you’re going to have to start spending serious money to market your company.
  4. Track and control your leads like the precious gems they are. A funny thing happens when real estate brokers take control of their marketing:  they become extremely fussy about their leads!  How many did we get?  What caused them to contact us?  What happened to them? It’s no wonder.  Today, most brokers spend more than $100 to generate a single inquiry! With that reality, you have to demand excellence in how they are handled.
  5. Never hire anyone until your business is generating so much buyer and seller traffic that you cannot handle it with your current staff. This probably means you’re going to have to let some of your existing staff go. It’s ok. Your future staff is going to feed you so much better than the commission split crew you have now.
  6. Come up with a consumer offer that is so compelling that people have to call you to find out how it works. It should be unique and should benefit the consumer.  Here is a hint:  if your consumer offer is 6%, MLS, Zillow, Sign, Open House, etc. – that’s not good enough.

IF you can execute those six steps, recruiting will stop being your reason to exist and become an essential activity, undertaken when necessary.  Armed with what every good agent wants, a steady flow of leads, you will be in a position to choose the agent you want to hire.  There is a big difference between choosing and begging and, as we all know, beggars can’t be choosers!

By now you are probably wondering what planet this happens on!  Understandably so.  The ordinary real estate world has been flowing in the same direction for so many years that, for it to right itself now would be about as difficult as having the Titanic maneuver around that iceberg!

Thankfully, the infrastructure for this real estate revolution is already in place.  It is a consumer focused, broker-centric business model called Help-U-Sell Real Estate.  For forty years we have been on the cutting edge of keeping brokers in control, and of delighting consumers in the process.  We build our businesses through careful marketing (and we market like nobody else), not by endless recruiting.  We deliver a full service experience that saves consumers thousands of dollars every day.

We organize our offices very differently than our ordinary counterparts.  A broker controlled environment operating on less revenue per transaction would have to.  Many brokers, struggling to make ends meet in their 6% offices, can’t imagine how Help-U-Sell Real Estate is able to charge less and keep going. But here’s the truth:  through proven systems and efficiencies, through careful control of leads and accountability, through staff specialization and division of tasks, our brokers usually return more dollars to the bottom line on a typical transaction than ordinary brokers do.  That’s right:  we charge less but make more.

If that sounds too good to be true, we’d love to talk with you and show you how it works!  Or have you talk with some of our current members.

Let’s be honest.  For forty years – probably less, depending on when you entered the business – you’ve watched us and thought we’d be gone like dust in the wind in a matter of months.  But we’re still here.  We’ve never gone anywhere.  Obviously, we have something that works.  Isn’t it time you found out what it was?