Mobile Marketing Featured in Inman News


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Amber Taufen, reporter for Inman News, just published a report called, “How Mobile Technology Has Changed Real Estate.” She was kind enough to interview me and feature my first Mobile MLS search done in 1985 from my car phone with portable terminal attached. Click on the link below to see the article from September 2, 1985.

Mobile Search Photo Only

1985 AZ Republic Article

Here is Amber’s report:    Inman_Mobile_specialreport



Realty Executives Celebrates 50 Years of Innovation!


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In 1965, my father, Dale Rector, revolutionized the real estate industry by inventing the 100% Commission Concept for managing a real estate brokerage. Almost every real estate company today offers a version of his concept.

This is the place where it all started.

This is the place where it all started! 230 Western Park Drive Scottsdale, Arizona

Over the past 50 years our company has continued to innovate…

Some examples of those innovations will be coming in future blog posts…

See how we started trends in personal advertising, MLS mergers, and Moblie MLS Searches…

Real Trends Blog Features Realty Executives’ 50th Anniversary


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Realty Executives_LogosWe are pretty excited to start the celebration of Realty Executives’ 50th Anniversary! On October 19th our franchisees gathered 50 years to the day when our first office was opened. Dale Rector and the company revolutionized the entire real estate industry with the creation of the 100% Commission Concept.

Real Trends, the industry’s highly-regarded publisher, recently highlighted some of our innovations over the years.

Here is the link to the blog article:

Realty Executives – 50 Years of Innovation

Inaccuracy of Zillow Zestimates as high as 61%


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spencer rascoff Zillow

Spencer Rascoff, CEO of Zillow

This article is by Kenneth Harney, respected real estate columnist. Many Realtors have to contend with the inaccuracy of Zillow’s Zestimates every day when interviewing sellers who believe their properties are worth more than the market value, because they believe the Zestimate they saw on the Zillow website. Also, buyers are duped into thinking they can purchase certain properties for less money than the market due to erroneous Zestimates they have seen online.

In my experience, these Zestimates vary widely from area to area, sometimes too high, sometimes too low. This article sums it up pretty well, showing that the true value of a property can vary from $40,000 to over $120,000 from the Zestimates.

This is a validation of the need to contact a true local expert Realtor, whether buying or selling.

CFPB Costing Consumers – Not Protecting Them


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Respa reform

Unfortunately, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has hurt consumers that want to obtain mortgages.  This has dampened the real estate market to a degree.  At a recent real estate conference I attended, I was on a panel with several colleagues, one of which is a lender.  He made it clear to the Realtors in the room that most, if not all, lenders today are not focusing on serving real estate agents or their clients, but are only focusing on compliance with the CFPB.  This is a real blow to the customer service people expect in a real estate transaction.  Here are some of the facts:

  • Since the inception of the CFPB, lenders’ costs have increased by 25% due to compliance requirements
  • In the first quarter of 2014, non-institutional lenders (mortgage brokers and bankers) lost $194 on every loan they made.

Obviously, this means that the consumer will be paying higher costs for mortgages.  I don’t believe this was the intent of the CFPB or the Dodd/Frank bill that created the Bureau, but it seems like Congress always acts before understanding the unintended consequences…

Also, if you are interested, I received this information from Ken Trepeta, Director – Real Estate Services at NAR.  I have included the link for you to sign up for the webinar on changes in the RESPA and the TILA. It sounds like an interesting and informative discussion.


On Tuesday August 26, 2014 at 2:00 PM EDT the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and Federal Reserve will be hosting a webinar on the implementation of changes to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and the Truth in Lending Act (TILA).  In addition to major changes to the loan disclosure and closing forms themselves, the new rules will require that the settlement statement be completed three days prior to closing.  The new forms and rules go into effect less than one year from now and industry is working diligently to put together systems and train staff to deal with the new forms and rules as well as integrating the new rules with local customs and practices. This webinar is part of the process of answering questions and concerns relating to implementation.  All those with an interest in disclosures, the closing process, and RESPA/TILA should sign up and listen in. Signup page:

As you can imagine, these new rules that go into effect in less than a year will probably add more costs to the closings on real estate transactions…I truly believe that the CFPB is hurting the consumer more than helping, when it comes to real estate.  What are your thoughts?


Housing Market and Economic Update


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I recently attended the Inman Connect Conference in San Francisco, and was honored to be included in the invitation-only CEO Summit.  One of the best presenters there was Pat Stone.  Here are some of the tidbits of information he gave us regarding the housing market and the economic issues affecting it.

  • The key to a returning robust housing market is all about CONSUMER CONFIDENCE.  Right now that index is gauged at about 83 to 84 on a scale of 0-100.
  • In order for the Consumer Confidence level to rise to over 90, we need to see the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) at 3% or more for 3 or 4 consecutive quarters.
  • That will bring in the 1st-time home buyers that are on the fence right now.
  • Of the 100 Million people in the U.S. that are ages 18-35, 40% say they want to buy a house.  That’s 40 Million People!!!

The really good news that I read today is that July’s CONSUMER CONFIDENCE INDEX = 90.9, up from 86.4 in June.  This is the highest level it has been in seven years!  Here is a link to a recent column by Zoe Eisenberg in RISMedia:


Conversation about Zillow and Other Portals like Trulia and on Facebook and Inman News


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I enjoyed this article of Matthew Barba’s from Inman News.  After reading the article and in particular, the dialogue between me and Jonathan Reese Wilhelm, I would love to hear your thoughts.  Do you agree with the analogy of the real estate search portals being similar to a retail store, with their inventory being the housing listing information?  Is my thinking off-base regarding the suppliers of this inventory?  Talk to me and let me hear your thoughts.

Court Throws Out 17 yr old RESPA “Policy”


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RESPA LogoOn November 27, 2013, the day before Thanksgiving, many real estate, mortgage and title insurance people were giving thanks for the decision handed down by The U.S. Appeals Court for the Sixth Circuit.

In a nutshell, there was an earlier federal court case (Carter v. Welles-Bowen Realty) that declared HUD’s long-standing “10-Point Standard” unconstitutionally vague and that it did not constitute agency regulations, and therefore did not merit deference by the courts. 

That decision was appealed, and even with strong support from HUD, the appellate court upheld the lower court’s decision.  In my opinion, this is HUD logoHUGE!  This court precedent will have a far-reaching effect within the real estate industry, and will change the landscape of Affiliated Business Arrangements in the future.

Granted, the CFPB has taken over RESPA enforcement from HUD, and that new entity is being aggressive, but this changes the playing field quite a bit.  ABAs must still meet the three baseline statutory requirements, but the Feds can no longer use the 10-point Standard with any real authority.

Here is a link to Ken Harney’s Inman News article about this ruling.

What are your thoughts?

The Wisdom(?) of the Masses…


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“Blanket cynicism gives the illusion of understanding.”

-Marcia Angell, Harvard Lecturer quoted in The New Republic


I ran across the above quote the other day, and it reminded me of a couple of things:

1.  Many great ideas never see the light of day because of cynical naysayers that always find ways to say “That will never work.”

2.  Group mentality often overcomes a single brilliant voice of innovation or questioning.

Just a quick reminder to myself and others to listen with an open mind…and stand up for ideas that may be different and are worthy of consideration and vetting, but that may change things for the better.