National Association of REALTORS® President Vince Malta shares how agents can weather the uncertainty of COVID-19 in a special episode of The Brian Buffini Show podcast
CARLSBAD, Calif. (April 1, 2020) — President of the National Association of REALTORS® Vince Malta will discuss how the real estate community can respond to COVID-19 in an exclusive interview with real estate leader, Brian Buffini, on The Brian Buffini Show podcast. The episode is part of Brian Buffini’s effort to help real estate professionals and consumers navigate the uncertainty of the national coronavirus crisis. Previous podcast guests on this topic include NAR chief economist and senior vice president of research Lawrence Yun, HUD Secretary Dr. Ben Carson and FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery.
In this latest exclusive interview, Vince Malta confidently assures the real estate community that “we’re going to survive this, and we’re going to be stronger at the other end as an industry.” For real estate agents, Malta explains that being a voice of value to clients is more important than ever. “REALTORS® will be able to express that value proposition so greatly as they’re guiding people through this post-COVID19.”
Buffini explains that once this crisis passes, pent-up demand will have many real estate professionals covering 12 months of business in nine months of work, so agents should start training now to prepare. He wants the world to know, “REALTORS® aren't going anywhere. We're here for the long haul. We're here to serve.”
A third-generation REALTOR®, Vince Malta has spent more than 40 years in the real estate business, and currently serves as CEO and broker of his own real estate company, Malta & Co., Inc. As the NAR 2020 president, Malta leads a membership of more than 1.4 million real estate agents. In this interview, master real estate trainer Brian Buffini complements Malta’s insights, providing clarity during this unprecedented time.
Since 2016, The Brian Buffini Show podcast has brought Brian’s profound content, insightful interviews and Irish wit to listeners around the world. With over 8 million downloads, the podcast continues to be seen as one of the most influential in the business space.
When we think of discipline, we often think of the military. Because they need to operate at the highest levels in the toughest of circumstances. military personnel always have to stay disciplined. Now is the perfect time to learn from and implement their rules in our own lives so we can stay on course, help others and remain steady and secure, even in these unprecedented times. Here are some military tips for developing discipline in the middle of a crisis:
Having self-control means being patient. In a crisis, we tend to become impatient. We might be in very close quarters with other people, for example, and our patience can be exhausted quite quickly. Under these conditions, we have to work even harder to control and manage our emotions. Self-control is the key ingredient in learning how to be patient.
Show Before Time
When you put a schedule together, even if it’s just for you, be disciplined about it. Get up and show up on time for your daily workout, meditation or meals. Even better, be early!
Respect Rituals, Routines and Habits
In times of stress, it’s easy to abandon your regular routines. But maintaining your habits is even more important than ever right now. Remove temptations and distractions, such as the TV and the Internet, from your environment, decide what you want to get done and go full on. A disciplined calendar elevates every part of your life. As Abraham Lincoln said, “Discipline is choosing between what you want now, and what you want most.” Stick with it!
Do the Little Things
A great way to cultivate the habit of being disciplined is to focus on the little things. For example, make your bed before you leave the house, keep your car clean, take the garbage out, pick up after yourself. As you discipline yourself to do the little things, you become more disciplined in doing the bigger, more important things. Right now, I’m working from home so I organize my office at the end of every day. This way my space is protected and there’s no sense of overwhelm in the mornings. It’s a little thing, but it makes a big difference!
Forgive and Forget
When you have a setback, acknowledge what caused it and move on. Don’t get caught up in guilt, anger or frustration. Focus your energy on the positives and keep moving forward.
Finish What You Start
You can talk the talk, but only your actions convey how genuine you are. Are you really serious about the task at hand? Respect yourself enough to keep your own promises to yourself and finish what you start.
In challenging times, it’s hard to keep focused. When you find yourself getting distracted,read your goals, review your reasons why, anticipate obstacles and work on your new behaviors. Don’t beat yourself up if you get off track – sometimes it’s three steps forward, two steps back. Just shake it off and relock on your goal.
As Lou Holtz said, “Without self-discipline, success is impossible.” Discipline is the foundation on which all success is built, so work to keep disciplined, now more than ever.
Listen to the latest episode of "The Brian Buffini Show" to hear more.
Reading is an incredibly valuable activity, but unfortunately, many people have trouble squeezing a few chapters into their busy schedule. Now, with the world asked to stay home to stop the spread of COVID-19, those same folks may find themselves with some extra time on their hands. Why not use it to pick up those books you’ve been meaning to get to?
If you want to dive back into reading, but you’re not sure where to start, have no fear. This list of personal growth books will fuel your mind, body and spirit — a welcome experience during these unusual times. Whether you order them online or download an eBook or audio book, start consuming these excellent titles today!
1. “What to Say When You Talk to Yourself” by Shad Helmstetter
If you’re home in self-quarantine, chances are you’ve been talking to yourself quite a bit, maybe without realizing it. This book helps you take negative, counterproductive self-talk, and turn it into words of power and optimism — something we all could use right about now.
2. “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey
A classic through-and-through, this self-improvement book is a must-read for anyone looking to change their habits in favor of a more rich, productive and successful life.
3. “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business” by Charles Duhigg
It’s easy to develop some not-so-great habits when you experience a major shift in your routine. Dive into this book right away to get valuable insights on how habits work, and some ways to transform your own.
4. “The Automatic Millionaire” by David Bach
If you want to use this time to reorganize your finances, pick up this book first. Financial guru David Bach walks readers through strategies they can implement immediately to improve finances and make it to a million.
5. “As a Man Thinketh” by James Allen
This oldie-but-goodie is especially relevant right now. If you’ve been feeling down about the current situation, read Allen’s take on the relationship between our thoughts and our happiness. Start here to learn how to think positively and change your perspective on life.
6. “The Emigrant Edge” by Brian Buffini
Change the way you view achievement and hard work in your life. Buffini & Company founder and chairman, Brian Buffini, shares his own classic rags-to-riches story, then explains from personal experience the seven traits that all successful immigrants possess. Take lots of notes in this one!
7. “The Greatest Salesman in the World” by Og Mandino
This book uses parable and storytelling to reveal the qualities and practices of the most successful business people. You’ll walk away with strategies to help you build a fortune physically and mentally.
8. “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill
Learn the “Law of Success,” which includes secrets that can bring you a fortune. The techniques in this book are simple yet effective, and can help you find lasting success no matter what life throws your way.
Whether you read these as part of a virtual book club, or you listen to a few while cleaning up your house, put the good stuff in so you can get the good stuff out.
Social distancing doesn’t have to mean productivity distancing! While COVID-19 has you self-quarantining at home, there are ways to use that time to get ahead of tasks and projects you’ve been putting off for a while. From getting a jump on spring cleaning to shaking things up in the kitchen, here are some ways to use your time at home wisely.
1. Deep Clean Your Home
Running around from place-to-place makes it difficult to squeeze in time for a sanitize. While you’re home, get a jump on your spring cleaning and kill any germs or bacteria that may be hiding out in harder to reach spots. It’s a win-win for your health and your living space!
2. Sort Through Your Closet
Take this time to go through you and your family’s wardrobe. Try things on, see what fits and what doesn’t, and ditch anything that’s so 2019. Bag up the give-away clothes and keep them aside. Later, once the coronavirus dies down and it’s safe to head out, take them to a charity shop or donation center, or consider re-selling online.
3. Rearrange Your Furniture
Being cooped up for a while can help you start to see your space in a new light. If you feel like you need a little more room or just a change of scenery, feng shui your place! Look up ideas and tips on Pinterest, Houzz and other home decor blogs. Get the whole family in on it — your living room will seem brand new!
4. Try a New Recipe
If you have a folder of recipes you have yet to try out, now is your chance! Take stock of the ingredients you have and try out that one dish you just haven’t had time to get to. It’s a great way to feel like you’re eating at a restaurant without leaving your house. Make a menu and plan to make a different recipe every few days!
5. Read a Book You’ve Been Putting Off
How many times have you received a great book recommendation, but never had a second to get to it? This is your chance to dive into a personal growth book or even a buzzworthy new novel. Download it as an audiobook or eBook if you can’t get the physical copy. You’ll keep your mind sharp and stay entertained while at home.
As you continue to do your part to practice social distancing, you can still be productive! Give these ideas a try and shake things up while you’re at home.
Looking for some hope and positivity? If you’re responding to coronavirus (COVID-19) by practicing social distancing, and you need an upbeat soundtrack to boost your mood, we’ve got you covered. Our Buffini & Company Spotify page has six unique playlists designed to inspire in different ways. Take a look at each and play the one that helps lift the spirits of your family!
Win the Day
This playlist is perfect for keeping productive and focused on a day of working from home. These laid-back pop songs are bright and inspiring — they’ll keep you humming along as you write personal notes, prepare monthly mailed Items of Value or catch up on your admin work. Best enjoyed with a cup of tea and a smile!
Motivation from The Brian Buffini Show
Start your day with a mix of inspirational episodes of The Brian Buffini Show podcast and some tunes to go with them. You’ll catch classic episodes like “Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life #112” and “The Strangest Secret — by Earl Nightingale #061,” along with corresponding songs to keep your spirits up. Great to throw on while cleaning the house, cooking dinner or sorting the closet.
Get Fired Up
Use this playlist to have a little fun with your family during self-isolation. The upbeat and motivational tracks on this playlist have been featured at our events in years past. They’ll keep your toes tapping during everyday chores, walks and productivity breaks. You may also want to listen to this one on your morning run, since the tracks are motivating and high-energy.
The Ultimate Client Party Playlist
No one should be having a face-to-face client party anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean these tracks have to sit on the shelf! This playlist is filled with hits from each era — there’s something for everyone to enjoy. If you want to break up your social distancing routine with a little family party, this is the perfect playlist to keep everyone entertained!
Best of MasterMind Summit
The songs on this playlist cover nearly 20 years of inspirational songs referenced at our flagship personal growth event, Buffini & Company MasterMind Summit. If you’ve been to the event before, the music on this playlist will take you on a fun trip down memory lane. If you haven’t attended, still give the tracks a listen — you’ll find them inspiring and impactful. They will leave you with a sense of hope and encouragement during these times.
No matter what your music taste sounds like, we’ve got you covered on our Buffini & Company Spotify profile while you’re spending time at home. Tune in and pick your favorite playlist, whether you’re setting a new personal note record, playing a game with the family or cleaning up the house.
As a cornerstone of the American Dream, homeownership means even more to people in these uncertain times. I recently had the privilege of interviewing Dr. Ben Carson, United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and Brian D. Montgomery, Assistant Secretary for Housing – Federal Housing Commissioner, about the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic on homeownership and the housing market. Here are some of the key takeaways:
Health and Housing Go Hand-in-Hand
Having a place that you can call your own and go to be supported is priceless. Homeownership gives peace of mind and allows people to grow and to plan. If you’re just trying to survive, that growth and planning can’t happen. Homeownership is also the number one mechanism of wealth accumulation in this country. For example, the average renter has a net worth of $5,000. The average homeowner, on the other hand, has a net worth of $200,000 – a 40-fold difference. Of course, as we learned from the housing crisis, homeownership must be sustainable once you have it.
The Housing Market is Strong, Even in the Midst of Crisis
Fortunately, we are in a radically different place going into this situation than we were during the mortgage crisis. February was the best month in more than 10 years for single-family housing. March has seen a little impact, down 4.4%, but we must remember that that’s 4.4% based on a preceding record-breaking month. Year over year, the market is still up approximately 13.4% on new home sales.
Right now, people might not be viewing homes because of social distancing, but virtual tours will see a big increase. This is a blip and it will pass. The fundamentals remain the same and are still strong. Once this is over, there will continue to be improvements in the market.
We’re All in This Together
During the 2008 downturn, approximately 50% of people who lost their jobs did not contact their mortgage lender because they were embarrassed. No one should feel this way. This is a shared problem — your neighbor may look like they’re very prosperous but, in reality, they are probably thinking the same as you. Steps have been taken regarding bank cooperation and forbearance, so do not hesitate to contact your lender if you think you’re going to miss a payment or get behind.
Despite this crisis, there is still an ongoing housing shortage impacting the ability of first-time buyers and renters to get a home. To stimulate new housing growth and meet the needs of pent-up demand, talks with local and state officials have begun and good progress is being made to remove some of the regulatory barriers preventing the building of affordable housing. There have also been innovative and entrepreneurial advances with manufactured housing, such as modular and 3D printable homes. Less expensive and quicker to assemble, these could provide both rural and urban solutions.
In these uncertain and anxious times, we already have the words of encouragement that we need in our national anthem. We live in “The land of the free and the home of the brave.” As Dr. Carson said, “You can’t be free unless you’re brave. It’s on every coin in our pocket and every bill in our wallet that says, ‘In God we trust.’” He went on to say that it doesn’t matter what your faith is. Strive to love your fellow man, care about your neighbor, develop your talents to the utmost and become valuable to the people around you. These are the values and principles that govern your life. That’s who we are. If we do that, there is no issue that can conquer us as a people.
Listen to the latest episode of The Brian Buffini Show, “A Home for the Brave — an Interview with Dr. Ben Carson and Brian D. Montgomery,” to hear more.
A key tenant of Working by Referral is to provide excellent service. This means not only when times are good, but when we are faced with challenges as well. As we move through these difficult days and weeks of social distancing and COVID-19, it is important to remember we are here to serve in any way that we can. Keep an eye and ear out for ways to help others. Here are some principles to keep in mind when being a voice of value.
Be an Encourager
While we are all navigating through these uncharted territories, you have the unique opportunity to be someone who can rally your clients, friends and family by being that person who is there to gently nudge them in right direction. Whether you’re a voice on the phone, a face in a video or a signature at the end of quick note to say “hi,” you can make a difference by encouraging people to say focused on what’s importance most in their lives.
Share Positivity and Give Hope
Pass along words, resources or messages you hear or see that you think can bring a little sparkle to someone’s day. Don’t just blast everyone you know with anything and everything you see and hear. Be intentional and thoughtful about what messages you are sending to which people. The more deeply you dig, the more impact your message will have.
Now is a great time to venture or get deeper into the world of social media. While there can be some negative aspects of these platforms, it is also a good way to stay connected in real time with the people in your life. There are lots of fun “challenges” and threads out there that are putting a little joy into people’s days, so focus on and be a contributor to these activities. You can also find more ways to serve those around you by seeing what your friends are posting about, and figuring out if you can fill that need.
This is not the time for “one and done”. As someone who is truly looking to serve, you must be consistent with following up and reaching out. Plan for another touch (not literally) in a week or so. Make getting in touch with others part of your new routine. Consistency breeds a new normal for you and others around you.
We all experience difficulties in our lives, whether in our health, relationships or business. Over the years, I have survived many different crises – from financial challenges, to our home being destroyed by wildfire, to serious health issues. I have tried to handle each of these trials in a way that made my relationships better, my family stronger and my business more prosperous. I made a comeback from a setback, and here’s how you can do the same!
Be Refined by the Fire
Gold is refined and purified by being subjected to intense heat in a crucible. The purer the gold, the more valuable it becomes. The same principle applies to us. When we are under pressure in our lives, our impurities are burned away, we melt down and we are refined to create something new and more valuable than before. Of course, some people replace their old impurities with new! When they get burned by life, they become more cynical and complaining and so less valuable to their family, friends, customers and society. In truth, difficult circumstances either purify or embitter. As James Allen said, “Circumstances do not make the man, they reveal him.” When you are under heat and pressure, short-term shortcomings can be exposed. But you must remember that real growth often happens when bad things occur. You either get humble or you get humbled!
When you go through the fire, there’s a chance to begin again, even if you don’t recognize that immediately. When our family home was destroyed by a wildfire, my first reaction was to question why. Ours was the only house on our street that was destroyed. Of course, I didn’t wish ill on anyone else, but I did wonder why we had to endure suffering when others didn’t. In time, however, I got perspective. I realized that there was an opportunity to begin again and I embraced that. When life goes sideways, you’re faced with a choice in how you look at things, how you think about things and how you act. After the fire, we lost much, but we also had the chance to see with new eyes and learn new lessons. Although we never fully replaced what we had, we made the choice to begin anew. Perseverance is a big part of any fresh start. You can feel overwhelmed by your circumstances, but you have to push through. Don’t put things off. Procrastination is the silent killer. If you want to start over in any aspect of your life, act now. Life is short.
Simplify Your Life
Life is complicated, but starting over means you can choose to simplify. If you had to start again, what would you keep that works right now? What direction would you want to go in? What small steps could you take? What would you choose to do and who would you choose to do it with? What would you add to or remove from your schedule? What habits or routines would you change or reinforce? What relationships would you invest in?
A great way to come out of the fire is to make a list of who and what you’re grateful for. Celebrate the day for what it is and look to the future. As Socrates said, “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but building the new.” Whatever you’re dealing, know that lessons are coming and better days lie ahead. Listen to the latest episode of "The Brian Buffini Show" to hear more.
When you’re unable to work with your real estate team face-to-face, holding yourself accountable can be tough. How do you keep up with your professional goals when you can’t physically meet with your team? That’s where a virtual real estate training program comes in handy.
Virtual real estate agent training courses provide a valuable shared experience with your team, even when you’re miles apart. These types of training boost accountability and sharpen your skills for the next time you get out-and-about with clients and colleagues.
If you want to host a virtual real estate agent training course online for your team, here are some tips for an exceptional experience.
Make It a Routine
Switching from an office setting to working from home can really shake up your daily routine. By setting a specific day and time each week for your training course, you are bringing back a sense of normalcy to your work day. You know that every Wednesday at 10 a.m., you will log in to your course portal and watch that week’s module—and you know that your team is doing the same thing! Make this the one constant you can look forward to each work week.
Follow Up With a Video Call
With all the video conferencing platforms out there, it’s easy to make the experience interactive. Set up a consistent video call right after your team has watched the module and share the major takeaways and strategies you learned. It doesn’t have to be formal—these types of meetings are a healthy way to connect without being in the same room. There are several free online platforms to facilitate your chat.
Take It to Social Media
Start a Facebook Group for your team if you don’t have one already, and use it to post interesting articles, discussion questions and anything else related to your course (or life in general). Maybe you need more clarity on something from the training, or perhaps it’s 10 p.m. and you just thought of a brilliant lead generation idea you just have to share. The platform is a casual space for connection that belongs to your group only. This can also spark conversations that take your training a step further, ultimately helping the team get more out of it by the end.
If you’re looking for your perfect real estate agent training program, try The Pathway to Mastery—Essentials™ from Buffini & Company. This eight-week course can be taken virtually so you and your team can gain back some of your routine, sharpen your lead generation skills and stay connected when you’re out of the office.
With social distancing and the recommendations to stay inside in full effect, it’s important to find ways to still create that same feeling while playing it safe. Here are five ways to safely get “face-to-face.”
1. Mail Call
Send a simple token to let people know you are thinking of them. A deck of cards or other card games (UNO, Go Fish, Old Maid) are easy to send and can be a great relief for boredom.
2. Virtual Hello
Create and send a short, personalized video for each of your clients. Add a small detail that makes them feel special. Or, if you think it is appropriate, be a little silly.
3. Meals on Wheels
Arrange to have your client’s favorite food delivered to their door. Many local restaurants are starting delivery service to combat the shutdown of their dining rooms. Contact smaller restaurants to see if this is something they offer.
4. Drop It
If your local health authority has not issued a “shelter in place” order, you can simply drop off whatever item you were already planning to bring to your clients. Meaning, leave it on their porch. Text afterward to alert them of your “visit.”
5. Action Without Interaction
Purchase a digital iTunes or Amazon gift card and send to your clients to let them know they should have a movie night on you!
It is important to follow the guidelines presented by all agencies and health officials to keep both you and those who are important to you safe. For more ideas, tips and information about continuing to serve your clients and your family during this challenging time, check out our Buffini & Company blog.
These are unprecedented times in our history. It’s natural to experience fear and uncertainty as we wonder how the Coronavirus crisis will affect the economy and the housing market. However, it’s also vital to remember that we have faced and conquered many crises in the past and we will again. This too shall pass. In the meantime, there are steps you can take and measures you can implement now to prepare for and navigate through this difficult time for our country, our world and our marketplace.
Be a Voice of Value
Right now, your customers need you more than ever, so be there for them. With social distancing, you might not be able to physically see people, but you can still call, email and write personal notes. Take the time to go through your database, contact your A+ clients and see if they could use a helping hand. Someone might need groceries left by their door, for example. Or you could digitally provide resources and Items of Value to help ease your clients’ anxieties and assist them through this challenging period. Be resourceful and ask yourself how you can serve your customers in this time of difficulty while still practicing social distancing, robust handwashing and sanitary measures.
If your day to day business is a little quieter, now is the perfect time to commit to some extra real estate training. Your skills pay the bills, so take this opportunity to invest in yourself and keep them sharp. Buffini & Company The Pathway to Mastery—Essentials™ can be taken online so you can get trained and be prepared for any fluctuations that might occur in the marketplace while you’re still in your own home. Use this time to upgrade and polish your skills so you can operate at your full capability when the crisis ends.
Also, remember to pay attention to what you read, watch and listen to. There is a lot of negative and inaccurate information on social media, for example. Get your updates from reputable sources and focus on exposing your mind to positive learning content. Put the good stuff in and you will shore up your character, your confidence and your business.
When you have a longer-term perspective, it alleviates the short-term panic. Yes, this is a difficult time, but the sky is not falling down. Some countries, like South Korea and China, are already bouncing back. This too shall pass and, once it does, there will be a rebound in people searching for homes and a pent-up demand that you should be ready for. Remember – in this time of crisis, the one place people had as their safe haven was their home. Their homes became their shelter, their comfort and their lifeboat. People will always need a home and, in days to come, you will help many of them find the home of their dreams. You will also help to guide investors – real estate is always going to be a place where people invest, and that’s not likely to change. What will change is that you might have to do 12 months’ business in nine, so get busy now!
Now is the time for you to provide clarity and encouragement to others. Be a settling force and bring calm and strength to your customers. The happy result will be an increase of referrals for your business in the future.
Listen to the latest episode of The Brian Buffini Show, an interview with Dr. Lawrence Yun of the National Association of REALTORS®, to learn more about the real estate market’s future with COVID-19.
Even if you can’t get face-to-face with your real estate team, there is still a way to keep spirits up and skills sharp: online real estate agent training. While the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has many people in self-quarantine, it is still possible to keep a sense of routine and normalcy in your real estate business. Online-based training programs like Buffini & Company The Pathway to Mastery™—Essentials are a great way to keep your team motivated and operating business as "unusual."
If you’re a real estate broker, owner or manager looking to host a successful virtual training for your office, here are some tips you’ll want to know.
Create a Calendar Event
Send a calendar invitation to participants for the day of the class. This way they can block off time to be fully present, even if they aren’t physically there with you.
Send Reminders for Agents to Tune in
It’s all too easy to forget meetings and calls when you’re working from home. Make sure you send reminders via text or email so agents know the training is still happening. Include clear instructions on how to access each training module and the expectations for that session.
Host Virtual One-on-One Meetings
Make sure your agents know that you are also invested in their success. Schedule a regular call or video chat for 10-15 minutes to see how your students are doing. Offer guidance, resources and tools to keep them focused on their goals!
Leverage Facebook Groups
Create a Facebook group for your class and encourage them to engage there. They can share articles, questions or ideas regarding the program. This shared space is a great way to help agents feel connected and get more out of the training.
This is especially important when you’re dealing with a remote office. Avoid letting participants’ fall off with their goals or performance during the program. Make sure you’re still holding their feet to the fire by requiring each student to seek an accountability partner they check in with regularly. This will dramatically increase their levels of success.
Don’t let COVID-19 crush your teams’ spirits! As you take care of your physical health, you can also take care of your mental health by remaining connected with others. Leading online real estate agent training programs like The Pathway to Mastery™—Essentials is an excellent way to keep your office feeling calm and supported while restoring a sense of normalcy in uncertain times.
Recently, novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has been at the top of everyone’s mind. As a real estate agent, you should continue to be a source of calm, encouragement and support for your clients. By sticking to the basics of Working by Referral, you can still provide your clients and community stability during a time where uncertainty feels like the new norm. Here are some ways you can continue to provide compassion, competency and exceptional service to your clients during this unusual time:
Calls, Notes & Pop-Bys:
More than ever, this part of the work by referral system holds true. In a time of uncertainty or when people feel uneasy, hearing from others is a great way to provide a sense of calm. With more people working from home or avoiding crowds, they may feel isolated. Go through your client list and call those you know could use to hear a friendly voice, or might need some support. Or, sit down and start scribing some notes. Receiving a kind note in the mail never fails to put a smile on someone’s face. Need to break up your day and get out of the office? Put together some Pop-by gifts and start delivering them to your A+ clients. These little extras of making calls, writing notes and popping by with small gifts will be appreciated.
Connect on Social Media:
Using social media to work by referral is a great way to bridge the gap between your online activities and offline relationships. As you scroll through your social media feeds, take note of what’s going on with your clients. Not only should you comment on their posts when it’s appropriate but take it one step further and follow up with a call, note or pop-by (see above). Come across an article that might help parents who have to work from home while their kids are off of school? Share it on your platforms and tag those you know have doubled their work-from-home duties.
Gather a Virtual Group
Know some folks who might benefit from getting together? Using the concept of the Client Appreciation Party, gather clients together to break bread — but on a smaller scale, and online. Using Zoom, Google Hangouts or Facebook, think about like-minded clients who may benefit from a get together to discuss topics from your recent Items of Value. Know some bookworms? Create a monthly book club with select clients and commit to reading self-improvement or motivational books. Discuss what you learned and how it can be applied to every day life.
Invest in Yourself
Speaking of learning, now is the perfect time to invest in yourself so you can give back to your clients on a new level. Take a break from the news and immerse yourself in content to help protect your mind. Subscribe to motivational podcasts, like The Brian Buffini Show, to get strategies and methodologies for success. Brush up on your work by referral fundamentals and take a real estate agent training course online. The Pathway to Mastery—Essentials is an 8-week course that will teach you how to maintain a solid business in any market. Feel like you need a little extra kick? Consider getting a real estate coach to help you navigate your business and keep you accountable.
During times like these, it is more important than ever to provide exceptional service to your clients. Continue to connect with your clients to demonstrate your compassion and competency. By applying the fundamentals, exceeding expectations and providing unexpected extras you will stand out from the crowd now and in the future.
Buffini & Company: Navigating Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Buffini & Company takes the safety of our clients and staff seriously. We will continue to provide updates from Buffini & Company as we monitor the situation with novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
This Too Shall Pass – An Interview with Dr. Lawrence Yun on Coronavirus, Economy and Real Estate Market
These are unprecedented times in our history. It’s natural to feel fear and uncertainty, but it’s also vital to remember that we have faced and conquered many crises in the past. On the whole, we are in a strong position. We have record low unemployment and solid banks. Our currency is robust, our credit is excellent and we have many options available to us to support the economy. In the housing market specifically, because we were at the center of the storm previously, we’re in really good shape and are well set up for this crisis in many ways.
To help you actively prepare for what’s ahead, I recently interviewed Dr. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of Research at the National Association of REALTORS®, about the effects of COVID-19 on the economy and the housing market. His expertise will help you replace fear with facts and successfully navigate this difficult time for our country, our world and specifically our marketplace.
The Real Estate Market Will Rebound
It is heartening that some economies, like China and South Korea, are already starting to bounce back from this crisis. According to Dr. Yun, if the so-called “economic quarantine” is of short duration here, we can anticipate that there will be quite a strong real estate rebound after perhaps one or two months of lackluster activity. With builders underproducing over the past few years, there was a housing inventory shortage going into this situation. This is in stark contrast to the recession 12 years ago when we had overproduction. If the length of the Coronavirus impact on the real estate market is short, it’s predicted that there will actually be a housing shortage here again soon.
Spring Selling Season Pushed into Summer
Dr. Yun advises that, if the economic shutdown is short, there will just be a delayed spring buying season. The normal spring season could occur in August or September and we might then experience a fairly robust sales market in that period. In fact, there may well be pent-up demand coming that we need to prepare for. Because more people will be working at home during this period, we may begin to see folks realizing they want different homes that fit their lifestyles in a better way. In essence, the housing market has huge potential for growth.
Federal Rate Cuts Will Affect Consumer Mortgage Rates
With the Fed cutting its rate to 0 percent, Dr. Yun says the country’s very accommodating monetary policy means that mortgage rates will be at historic lows. The most recent data shows about 3.3% and it could even go down to 3%, according to Yun. Half of Americans don’t have any exposure to the stock market, so they’re mainly concerned with low mortgage rates. In terms of buying, if you feel your job is secure — and many jobs are — this could be the perfect time to take advantage of the record-low mortgage rates. There may be less buyers in the market during the crisis, which means there’s less competition and potentially more room for price negotiation.
The Economy will Bounce Back
Dr. Yun predicts that four of the next five years will probably be improving years. People planning for the long-term future in real estate will do well. Taking this longer-term perspective is critical because it takes you out of the short-term panic. This is a difficult time, yes, but it will pass. Dr. Yun believes that, even if it takes a little longer to contain it, there is such a solid fundamental for the real estate market that things will play out very well over the long haul.
In these uncertain times, it’s vital to arm yourself with facts so you can prepare for and deal with any challenges in the industry. Listen to the latest episode of The Brian Buffini Show to get more updates on the real estate market and motivation during this time.
Self-quarantining isn’t necessarily fun or easy. If you’ve begun your own practice of social distancing as a response to the COVID-19 outbreak, you may have realized things can get a bit lonely when you’re in isolation. One of the best ways to fight cabin fever is with a bit of positivity — we’re talking motivational podcasts to lift your spirits back up!
Buffini & Company Chairman and Founder Brian Buffini has talked a lot about navigating tough times on his podcast, The Brian Buffini Show. We’re throwing it back to several of our favorite episodes that talk to this theme to help motivate, inspire and uplift during these uncertain times.
1. This Too Shall Pass — an Interview with Dr. Lawrence Yun #201
“It’s going to pass. This short-term virus negative impact will pass.” – Dr. Yun
If you’ve been worried about the country’s economic state, give this episode a listen to ease your concerns. Brian interviews the chief economist for the National Association of REALTORS®, Dr. Lawrence Yun, to provide some clarity on the housing market and economy during the novel coronavirus outbreak. You’ll walk away with answers to major questions about the market and where everything will go once the pandemic passes.
2. Be Anxious for Nothing #175
“You can change habits. Society does not have to impose its anxiety on you whatsoever.” – Brian Buffini
Anxiety affects us all, even when there isn’t a pandemic going on! This episode is a great one for helping you decrease your anxiety, stay on course and Live the Good Life. Brian shares research, tips and strategies for lowering your stress levels and shifting to a more worry-free mindset.
3. The Power of a Made-Up Mind #025
“You can do it, but you gotta have your mind made up.” — Therese Buffini
When you make up your mind, you can achieve much more than you thought. If you’re letting the stress of world affairs get you down right now, listen to this podcast and learn how to transform your fears into action, power and positivity. This one is a Brian Buffini Show classic.
4. How to Be Mentally Tough #138
“If you are more mentally tough you will be able to be more resolved, more determined, and more successful.” — Brian Buffini
Dealing with the global impacts of novel coronavirus is no walk in the park, but when you up your mental toughness, these things can actually become less daunting. In this episode, Brian describes what it means to be mentally tough, and offers some strategies for increasing your own ability to handle challenges in a new way.
5. How to Be Resilient #115
“At the end of the day, you can’t win if you don’t finish the game.” — Brian Buffini
During times like these, resilience is key to not giving up hope. Rather than taking the easy way out, listen to this episode and learn how you can cultivate a resiliency that can withstand any situation.
6. Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life #112
“Work harder on yourself than you do on your job; you’ll go from making a living to making a fortune.” — Jim Rohn
Developing a more positive outlook on life affects us in more ways than we may have realized. In this episode, Brian goes over how to harness the power of personal growth to eliminate negative thoughts and commit to a philosophy that creates success.
7. How to Turn the Worst of Times into the Best of Times #092
“Your purpose will be revealed; it’s an elimination process, not a selection process.” —Brian Buffini
Although these are strange times, there is a way to come out stronger than you were when you started. Brian teaches a few solid self-development strategies to help you grow and learn from difficult times. Discover how to cultivate an optimistic perspective that allows you to withstand anything.
8. Future Proof Your Business #090
“Principles don’t change, tactics do.” — Brian Buffini
When you build your business on strong fundamentals, it’s able to survive even the toughest of circumstances. Business owners, listen to this episode to help your operation emerge from the chaos stronger than ever.
9. Taking Note of Your Success #096
“A personal note says the right words at the right time to the right person.” — Brian Buffini
Use your time in self-quarantine to share some positivity with a personal note! These are a great way to connect with others without getting face-to-face. In this episode, Brian talks all about the importance of snail mail and offers strategies to craft the perfect personal note.
10. The Strangest Secret — by Earl Nightingale #061
“We become what we think about.” — Earl Nightingale
A dose of motivation from one of personal growth’s founding fathers, Earl Nightingale. Learn how your thoughts can change the course of your life. Use this recording to keep your mind sharp and your goals sharper while you’re at home!
Let us know which episodes help you stay motivated, resilient and brave! Tag us on Facebook and keep the conversation going. New episodes of The Brian Buffini Show are out every Tuesday with more great content. Happy podcast listening!
As more people opt to stay home to avoid the spread of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus), people of all professions are dealing with a new challenge: how to stay focused while working from home. It can be difficult to move through your professional to-do list when you’re also trying to wrap up laundry, keep an eye on your kids, organize your closet and clean your bathroom!
Fortunately, there are several hacks to make sure you get the most out of your day. Make sure you follow these tips for working from home to stay motivated, focused and productive.
1. Create a Productive Workspace
Designate a part of your home to be your “office.” Even if it’s just a corner of the kitchen table, creating a workspace outside of your bedroom keeps work and sleep separate, which helps you stay more awake and focused throughout the day. If you’ve got no room for an office outside of the bedroom, try facing your station away from the bed, and keep it comfortable, professional and bright.
2. Set Office Hours
Designate official office hours and stick to them, just like you would in a traditional office space. Remember to schedule time for lunch as well! If you have any doctor’s appointments, view them as an “out of office” activity, understanding that they are occurring during your work hours. When you take time spent at the “office” seriously, you’ll squeeze much more out of each day.
3. Look the Part
While this may seem like common sense, anyone who’s worked a day at home understands how tempting it is to postpone the shower and make calls in your PJs until noon, especially if you’re feeling under the weather. Even if you’re not going anywhere, make it a priority to get dressed and ready in the morning as if you were. You’ll feel more awake, focused and professional, which will translate into the quality of your work. That will also make you less likely to crawl back into bed!
4. Keep Personal Activities to a Minimum
It can be all too easy to let everyday tasks and errands get in the way of our scheduled work activities. That’s why it is vital to stay disciplined with your home office! Avoid grocery shopping, sorting laundry or cleaning your bathroom during your workday. If you couldn’t do those activities at your actual office, don’t try them in your home office! When it comes to watching the kids, try to keep them away from your workspace if possible so you can limit distractions, or arrange for another family member to watch them when you can.
5. Schedule in BreaksThere’s no reason for you to be chained to the desk in your home office! By taking scheduled breaks, you keep your energy up and your mind refreshed. Use that time to take walks, check social media or take care of minor household tasks if necessary. Keep these breaks around 15-20 minutes, and be prepared to dive right back into your work when you are done.
Implement these tips for working from home right away to stay focused off-site, whether you’re self-quarantining or working remotely to combat the spread of novel coronavirus. Cheers to keeping productive, safe and healthy!
It is perceived wisdom that it’s always a good idea to have a Plan B, just in case Plan A doesn’t work out. However, a Plan B can be counterproductive and can actually prevent you from achieving your goals. If you want to truly succeed, the best plan of all is to decisively focus on what you really want and then work towards getting it. Here’s how:.
Make up your mind
Being stubborn is bad when it’s connected to pride but great when it’s connected to resolve! Make up your mind to be resolute, always focus on your wins and never give up working towards your goals. As Winston Churchill said, “Never give in – never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.” Be purposeful and determined in your thinking and you will reap the rewards.
When it comes to decision-making, we can often have a false sense of certainty. We can make decisions in haste and then have to scramble to recover or we can be blinded by our short-term emotions and then have to deal with the long-term consequences. To take the right path, you must make well-informed decisions. Explore the options, do the homework and then decide on the best course of action. Remember: Never make permanent decisions based on temporary feelings!
Your ability to earn and your ability to learn go hand in hand. Ask yourself: What are you listening to, reading and watching? Immerse yourself in personal growth and real estate professional development and you will keep growing, networking and synergizing. Taking action like this means you will attract likeminded people and become a winner…and winners always focus on winning!
We all experience difficulties and challenges, but if you want to win at relationships, business and life, you should always focus on your Plan A, not fall back on a Plan B. Listen to the latest episode of “The Brian Buffini Show” podcast to hear more.
How many times can you remember setting a goal, hustling for a few weeks to achieve it, then totally stopping it two months later? Whether your goal is to get to the gym regularly or to start reading more books, it can be all too easy to abandon these habits as everyday life unfolds around us.
But with some accountability, all of this changes.
Accountability ensures that you do what you say you’re going to do, when you say you’re going to do it. It’s the force that holds your feet to the fire, pushing you to swap your couch for the treadmill or to choose that new novel instead of Netflix.
Without that constant push toward achievement, our goals can fall to the wayside. And let’s be honest — in a business like real estate, where isolation is common, it can be hard to hold ourselves accountable, even though it’s that much more necessary. That’s why we’re sharing these five tips to keep the busy real estate agent accountable and on track!
1. Get a Coach
This is one of the most important things you can do for your business. A real estate coach is your ultimate accountability partner. They help you make a plan for your business, guiding you through the ups and downs while making sure you stay on top of lead generation and skill building. It is a sure-fire way to get built-in accountability to achieve at higher levels any time of the year.
2. Attend Real Estate Events
By attending a real estate event, you have something to work toward in your business. You know that in a couple of months, you’re going to get the opportunity to synergize and learn from thousands of like-minded agents on how to keep improving your business. Let this hold you accountable to keep up with your own lead generation, so that by the time the event rolls around, you feel empowered, successful and ready to absorb even more tips and tricks.
3. Take a Real Estate Training
A training program for real estate agents specifically holds you accountable when it comes to skill building. As busy agents, we know we should be constantly sharpening our skills, but rarely do we make the time to do so. When you sign yourself up for a real estate training program, or opt to take one in your brokerage, you are giving yourself some accountability to practice the essential skills of real estate and ultimately make more money.
4. Track Your Business Efforts
With great tracking comes great accountability. When you use a real estate CRM to record your lead generation activities, you provide yourself with a record of how you are performing that week or month. When you are constantly hitting all your numbers of calls, notes and pop-bys, you may be energized to keep the momentum going. If your numbers aren’t as great as you thought, they serve as the accountability you need to improve your hustle and generate a few more leads each week.
5. Consume Motivational Content
For best results, stay motivated! The best motivational podcasts and books contain content that inspires you to want to stay accountable and achieve your goals. The bottom line is if you personally aren’t invested in your goal, there’s no way you’re going to achieve it. Devour media that inspires you toward achievement so that you are motivated and ready to stay accountable on your journey.
Buffini & Company offers many products and services to help you find more accountability in your day-to-day life. Whether you hop into our real estate training program, The Pathway to Mastery—Essentials™, or our One2One Coaching™ program, you’re bound to find the tools and resources you need to stay accountable and achieve all your personal and professional goals.
At Buffini & Company, we like to practice relational marketing with a little system called Working by Referral. The idea is that by investing in relationships with your sphere of influence, you can create advocates of your business who will refer you to their friends and family. Channeling your real estate marketing efforts toward relationships with your favorite clients is a fun and effective way to generate a steady stream of leads that will sustain your business for years.
Check out these three tips to get started on the relational marketing journey.
1. Mail a Consistent Item of Value
An Item of Value is an informative marketing piece that provides useful information to your clients — news they can use about common topics like taxes, building wealth, cybersecurity and more. Mail these flyers monthly to provide value to your relationships and demonstrate a level of care that sets you apart from the crowd. The information in these Items of Value can also make for a great conversation starter for regular check-in calls with your clients and past clients.
2. Invite a Business Owner to Lunch
Your B2B network can become a valuable source of referrals — if you ensure that you nurture it! Link up with another business owner you work with to grab lunch or coffee. You may reach out to your accountant, contractor, attorney or anyone else you see semi-regularly. As business owners, you can exchange ideas and synergize over subjects like growth and marketing. You can also open the door to referring each other to your respective databases. Investing in B2B connections is a great strategy for any agent looking to become a more relational marketer!
3. Always Follow Up with a Personal Note
Whether you just delivered a Pop-By to your current first-time buyer or bumped into a past client at the grocery store, always follow up these interactions with a personal note! It’s a small unexpected extra that doesn’t go unnoticed, and it will leave the recipient with a smile on their face. Personal notes are an exceptional way to deepen current relationships and rekindle past ones. The gesture lets your competence and character shine, keeping you top of mind when folks in your database are looking to buy or sell a home.
Above all, Working by Referral with relational marketing efforts should be fun! You get to work with people you actually want to be around, and they want to refer you to other great people just like them. Buffini & Company Referral Maker PRO marketing kit has everything you need to help you build those relationships — between personal notecards and beautiful Items of Value, you’ll get all the tools for success delivered to your door each month. Get started today and see how this kit will transform your lead generation!
National Association of REALTORS ® Chief Economist, Dr. Lawrence Yun, addresses the outlook of real estate markets in a special episode of “The Brian Buffini Show” podcast
CARLSBAD, Calif. (March 19, 2020) — Chief economist and senior vice president of research for the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), Dr. Lawrence Yun, will discuss the impact of COVID-19 on real estate and the economy in an exclusive interview with real estate leader, Brian Buffini, on The Brian Buffini Show podcast. Available Thursday, March 19, the two experts will weigh in on the state of the housing market, the short/long-term outlook and how real estate agents can safely serve their clients and community.
In a wide-ranging interview covering a variety of topics, Dr. Yun reveals his belief that a vibrant real estate market should emerge after the coronavirus threat subsides, “even if it takes a little longer to contain it, there are such solid fundamentals for the real estate market, things will play out very well over the long haul.”
Buffini advises real estate professionals to be a reliable source of market information for their clients and use the downtime to enhance their professional skills. He wants everyone to realize that “The sky is not falling. This is a difficult time, but in many ways, it could be our finest hour.”
Dr. Lawrence Yun is a renowned leader in real estate and economics. His extensive research fuels major reports for NAR, which serves a membership of more than 1.4 million real estate agents. During this interview, respected industry guru Brian Buffini complements Yun with his more than 30 years of real estate expertise, providing much needed clarity in the midst of an uncertain economic situation.
The Brian Buffini Show podcast is now in its 4th year of providing real estate professionals and consumers with Brian’s insightful observations, along with the views his well-known guests. The podcast has become recognized as one of the most influential in the industry, with over 7 million downloads.
What: “This Too Shall Pass: An Interview with Dr. Lawrence Yun,” The Brian Buffini Show special episode
Who:Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of REALTORS®, and Brian Buffini, Founder and Chairman of Buffini & Company
Where: The Brian Buffini Show
When: Available Thursday, March 19, 2020 @ 12:01 a.m.