From The Trenches: Raj Qsar of The Boutique Real Estate Group

Every month FreeAgent by AdWerx brings you advice from top-performing agents and real estate technology experts in “From the Trenches.” Here atAdWerx, we believe that to be the best, you have to learn from the best. While doing your own research can be helpful, getting tips straight-from-the source can offer new perspectives and give you a taste of each real estate maven’s personality.

This month in From the Trenches, we’ll hear from Raj Qsar, Principal and Owner ofThe Boutique Real Estate Group, in California. His company serves as one of the most dominant real estate teams in the Orange County real estate market, serving north, central, south and coastal Orange County. It’s easy to see why they come out on top. While agents with The Boutique Real Estate Group excel with their personal branding, the marketing of each listing the firm represents is impeccable. According to theboutiquere.com, “Every real estate listing is assigned a best-in-class sales & marketing campaign, and receives the support of industry leading marketing, advertising, social media, video, staging & interior design, graphics & design, all of whom work together to develop a strategic and tactical marketing plan customized to each client and each property.”

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Raj is no stranger to the value of technology and social media. Aside from employing modern marketing in every aspect of his business, he has also spoken professionally on using these strategies in real estate. Raj was recently named one of the Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders for 2013 by Inman News. This annual list recognizes those who embody leadership, ingenuity, strength, conviction, power, persistence, perseverance and progress. Raj is also a contributor at Inman News covering the topics of creative video for real estate, social media and networking. The Boutique Real Estate Group was just selected in 2013 as a Next Generation Brokerage by Better Homes & Garden Real Estate and 1000 Watt Consulting.  These NextGen brokerage projects represent a new breed of real estate brokerages growing across the country. These firms empower agents and clients by providing the most up-to-date and flexible technology. They build meaningful brands, and attract and engage new customers.

1. How did you get your start as a real estate agent?

It’s a funny story. When I initially began selling real estate, I just wanted to sell one to two homes a year and keep my real estate career relatively small. After having my license for just three days, I was absolutely hooked. I was in escrow with a client and it was just the beginning. The social media and technology aspects of my business came later, but I’ve been addicted to the real estate industry since day one.

2. You’re very active on Pinterest. What advice can you give to agents about using Pinterest for real estate?

Pinterest is great, but I advise people to not be a “real estate agent” on Pinterest. Showcase your community and lifestyle.

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Raj keeps a personal Pinterest page focused on his personal brand aside from the Pinterest page of The Boutique Real Estate Group. Both feature a variety of content with some overlap. Topics they post about include aspects of the Orange County lifestyle, including homes, pools, luxury items, famous residents, beaches, cars and style. The company page also features a board dedicated to their video tours.

 

3. In a hot real estate market like this, it’s tempting to spend too much time working in the business instead of on building the business. How much time should an agent spend on marketing themselves versus marketing listings?

The fact is, busy agents need help.  None of us can do this alone, and you shouldn’t try to do it all on your own.  At The Boutique Real Estate Group, we believe the team approach is best, because there are just too many hats to wear right now for an agent. You really have to dedicate time to both. Remember to “walk before you can run,” and don’t get too ahead of yourself. Build your team block by block. Building and nurturing a quality team takes time! And always hire the best.

If you are an agent, find a team that you respect and admire. Demonstrate your skills, and ask to join.  If you are lucky enough to become a part of the team, work hard and contribute. Soak it all up and enjoy the ride!

4. As an agent, you value social media and technology. What are some specific examples of ways they have helped you communicate with clients and increase productivity?

Social is just an amplifier. If you are a rockstar agent, social will just amplify all of the great things you are doing. You have to be doing well in your business for social media to add value to your brand. Also, my tagline is, “If you are not in my newsfeed, you do not exist!” It’s not enough to just have a social presence. You have to be engaged with users and clients if you want to get noticed.

Twitter really is a cocktail party. It is a great tool for agents, but remember, you are in and out in 140 characters.  Make every post short and simple, and talk to people!  If you talk to people they will talk back!

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5. What trends are you seeing in real estate right now in terms of technology and social media? 

We are a 99.9 percent paperless office.  All of our agents sign a contract that they will have an iPhone and iPad at the start of employment.  We also have a technology standard – we call it the #tbreg tech standard  – which all agents must master.  This is the new normal.

Many agents struggle to adopt the technology we have now, and I’m not sure why they put this on the back burner.  For our team, it’s all we talk about.  We ask ourselves, “How can we create a REAL estate experience that our clients will enjoy?”  We want the entire experience to be as easy and painless as possible. Today, utilizing technology is an integral part of that experience with clients.

If you are a great agent, you will get referrals.  It’s that easy.  Put your clients first in all you do and the technology and referrals will follow.

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One way The Boutique Real Estate Group goes the extra mile for their clients is by producing creative listing videos. Watch the story unfold in this video for 9741 Janice Circle, with gorgeous shots of the home in an entertaining and beautiful presentation. The Boutique Real Estate Group is at the forefront of video for real estate, and one of their videos was awarded a spot in the Top 20 Real Estate Videos in the USA in 2013. Watch the video here.

 

6. Is there anything else you’d like to share with FreeAgent readers?

I have truly made some wonderful friends over the years via social. It has been a wonderful ride and has been a true blessing. Turning online relationships into meaningful real life friendships has been one of the greatest joys for me. There are so many great people in this world and in our industry who are trying to raise the bar in all we do. If you take the time to talk to them, they will talk back.

Find Raj Qsar on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn, and be on the lookout for the opening of The Boutique Real Estate Group’s second luxury office in Corona Del Mar, California in January 2014.

As an agent, do you ask yourself “How can I create a REAL estate experience that my clients will enjoy?” What do you think are the most important parts of this experience? Let us know in the comments below!

The Boutique Real Estate Group Joins RESAAS – The Real Estate Social Network ™

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Vancouver, British Columbia CANADA, Nov 26, 2013 (Filing Services Canada via COMTEX) — RESAAS Services Inc. (RSS – CNQ), The Real Estate Social Network(tm), is excited to announce that The Boutique Real Estate Group (http://www.theboutiquere.com/) will be joining the RESAAS (http://www.resaas.com/)platform.

Why are we so excited? Simply put, The Boutique Real Estate Group is at the forefront of the real estate industry. Just look at their depth of engagement and interaction across all social platforms. Every listing of theirs is assigned a world-class sales & marketing campaign team, receiving the support of industry leaders in social media, internet marketing and print advertisement. For example, take a look at the listing video (http://rebla.st/9t6bf3a) for 49 Golden Eagle, Irvine, California in the exclusive triple-gated neighbourhood of Shady Canyon. The Boutique’s marketing campaigns include an aggressive mix of print advertisement & Boutique branding, social media integration, search engine optimization, HDR Photography (see below), 360? HD V-Tours, full responsive custom built property websites and full-colour custom property brochures, as well as top placement of the world’s largest search engines and real estate websites.

Raj Qsar, Owner of The Boutique Real Estate Group, has a dream and is on a mission. He has used his more than 18 years of sales, marketing and leadership experience to turn the brokerage into one of the most dominant teams in the Orange County Real Estate market, bringing the key components of his brokerage entirely “in-house” – including back-end SEO and technology, graphics and design, staging and interior design, as well as social media, listing and transaction concierges for each of their agents.

What’s more, Raj has traveled the country to educate and consult other brokerages, brokers and real estate professionals on the value of technology and social media as a local and national speaker. In 2013 he was named as one of the Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders by Inman News. Also in 2013, The Boutique Real Estate Group was named as a Next Generation Brokerage by Better Homes & Gardens and 1000 Watt Consulting.(http://nextgenbrokerage.com/) Finally, The Boutique Real Estate Group won an award for the Top 20 Real Estate Videos in the U.S.A.

Now he’s joined RESAAS – The Real Estate Social Network(tm), along with his entire team at The Boutique Real Estate Group.

“The real estate industry needs to think outside of the box and we need to stop thinking like real estate agents,” said Raj Qsar, “which is why I am always on the search for new ways to improve my team’s ability to sustain their elite service through technology and social media. RESAAS is an exciting opportunity for us to do just that. It will significantly improve internal communication, boost each agent’s personal marketability and further increase the exposure for our listings.”

Each agent at The Boutique Real Estate Group will receive his or her own corporate branded agent page on RESAAS, and will be connected together into an exclusive group to communicate and stay connected with every other member of their team. In addition, The Boutique Real Estate Group will have its own corporate branded page in order to easily broadcast relevant information and market their company’s content.

To view the image “Raj-Listing-Photo.jpg” please click on the following link:

http://corporate.resaas.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Raj-Listing-Photo.jpg

“We are very excited to welcome The Boutique Real Estate Group to RESAAS,” said Nadia Suttle, Account Executive at RESAAS. “They are a prime example of how to lead the real estate industry by providing modern, effective and quality service for their clients and their listings. With them now onboard, it lends massive credence to RESAAS – The Real Estate Social Network(tm) as a powerful tool for real estate professionals everywhere.”

About RESAAS SERVICES INC.

RESAAS – The Real Estate Social Network(tm), is designed specifically for the real estate professional to connect and communicate in real-time. Known as real estate broadcasts, RESAAS’ powerful reblasts(r) engine automatically generates all of your real estate workflow into valuable social content that is instantly pushed out to the RESAAS platform and other social networks. Visit www.resaas.com.

On Behalf of RESAAS

Danielle Sissons

VP Communications

RESAAS Services Inc.

Telephone: (604)558-2929; Email: danielle.sissons@resaas.com

Investor Relations

RESAAS Services Inc.

Telephone: (705) 888-2756; Email: scott.young@resaas.com

The CNSX has not reviewed, nor approved or disapproved the content of this press release.

Forward-Looking Information:

This press release and the company’s website referenced herein may include forward-looking information within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation, concerning the company’s technology platform. Forward-looking information is based on certain key expectations and assumptions made by RESAAS’ management, including future plans for the design and development of the company’s technology platform. Although RESAAS believes that the expectations and assumptions on which such forward-looking information is based are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on the forward-looking information because RESAAS can give no assurance that they will prove to be correct. Forward-looking statements contained in this press release are made as of the date of this press release. RESAAS disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise, other than as required by applicable securities laws.

To view this press release as a PDF, please click on the following link:

http://www.usetdas.com/pr/resaas11262013.pdf

Source: RESAAS Services Inc. (cnsx:RSS) http://www.resaas.com

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32 Home Buying Tips from Some of the World’s Most Popular Realtors

CaliLove

Via Scott Riley @homebuyernation www.HomeBuyerNation.com

After the success of the last expert roundup, I knew another one was in order. This time I asked some of the world’s most popular Realtors from around the country to share one uncommon tip for a first-time home buyer.

They all delivered with some priceless insights and wisdom. We even had 3 agents from the hit TV show Million Dollar Listing weigh in with tips for the HomeBuyer Nation!

I learned a ton and I think you will too. After you’re done, I’d love to hear which one you thought was the most helpful, in the comments.

For full article, follow this link:  http://bit.ly/I1bTBB

Baker Ranch | Melissa Sims | The Boutique Real Estate Group

via Melissa Sims

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Times, they are changing…

 

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” -Charles Darwin

 

Times are definitely changing, and it remains to be seen whether these changes are going to have a positive impact on local communities.  The recent influx of developers coming into our towns and creating more housing seems to have created quite the stir of emotions for current residents.

 

I run a Facebook page, called Around the Ranch, which I created for the residents of Foothill Ranch to connect with one another, while providing an open platform to discuss our community.  When I asked everyone’s opinions about the new developments coming in, the range of answers was staggering.  Too much traffic, unwanted demographic changes and negative impacts on our schools seemed to be the largest concerns.  However, many pointed out that it could also help our micro-economy through local businesses gaining new customers and create the need for more shopping and dining choices.

 

The Toll Brothers, known for their impeccable luxury design, has teamed with Shea Homes, a leader in master-planned communities, to bring us Baker Ranch, the largest of the new developments to impact Foothill Ranch.  Baker Ranch will bring just over 2300 new homes, 6 parks and a focus on outdoor recreation.  “Village One” as they call it, will contain six neighborhoods, with homes ranging from 1200 sq. ft. to 3200 sq. ft. and will be ready in early 2014.  Prices have not been released, but most anticipate them to start in the $300,000 range for townhomes and $500,000 for detached homes.  If the development rings true to Shea and Toll Brothers’ past accomplishments, the result will be beautiful luxury design, coupled with an outstanding focus on community atmosphere.

 

Sounds great, right?  Well, residents in Foothill Ranch are mainly concerned with this development’s impact on our local elementary school, Foothill Ranch Elementary (FRE), which is part of the Saddleback Valley Unified School District.  A straight answer is somewhat hard to come by from city officials and planners, as to what school the new residents will go to.  FRE already has an overwhelming traffic issue, which could be exacerbated by the incoming population.  The teacher-to-student ratio is high at FRE due to cutbacks over the past few years.  However, FRE’s attendance is down this year, and new students could prove beneficial to funding for the school.  Baker Ranch will use Saddleback Unified for it’s district, and is required to pay the district around $8,500 per unit for improvements to whichever school is impacted.

 

The effect of Baker Ranch on local resources will soon be realized, but whether it is a positive or negative impact could be in the attitude we all have toward change.  The changes are coming, and it is how we adapt to those changes that will determine the future of our community.