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Redesigned, Rewritten & Resplendent: The New Seller Presentation is LIVE!

Announcing the launch of the all-new Home Selling Presentation!

Based on your input, we combined your content suggestions with the lifestyle look and feel of the Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate brand.

The result is a fresh Home Selling Presentation that will give you a real competitive advantage when you're in front of selling prospects.

Visit Seller Book Downloads page on KCH Agent to checkout and start using the new and improved presentation now.
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Share Marketing Messages with Your Clients Using Agent eConnect

On the heels of launching My Home Compare 2.0, as well as the My Home Compare video, we have more exciting news to share.

We’ve created a new client communications program called Agent eConnect. This powerful email tool greatly enhances your ability to share marketing messages with your clients, while saving you a ton of time.

Agent eConnect content automatically displays in major email clients (e.g. aol, gmail, yahoo, outlook) . . . no more opening attachments or sending links. Plus, you can even access and send messages to anyone in your Outlook contacts.

We invite you to explore Agent eConnect today, so you can see firsthand how we've included your agent branding and message editing capabilities, all in a ready-to-use template. Please note: Our first template is available. Additional templates will be released in the future.
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Plaza Agent Garners National Attention
with Better Show Appearance

Kathy Stone (Plaza) and her clients recently appeared on The Better Show during a segment called 'Create a Backyard for Entertaining'.

For their segment, Kathy and her clients got some help from the Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate Dream Team member and outdoor design expert Carson Arthur as he addressed how to transform a new, empty backyard into a social setting.

This appearance shined a bright spotlight on Kathy and on our company. The Better Show is a nationally syndicated lifestyle TV program that aims to make its viewers' lives "Better" by focusing on everyday living, family and relationships. It is seen in more than 160 markets nationwide and reaches 75% of U.S. television households*.

If you did not have a chance to watch it live or record it on a DVR, here is a link to her segment for you to enjoy.

*Source: The Association of Magazine Media
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REALTORS® Are Playing It Safe in September

September is REALTOR® Safety Month and the National Association of REALTORS® has made many resources available which can help you protect yourself from the inherent dangers of being an agent.

Arm yourself with knowledge, awareness and empowerment through the presentations, webinars and ideas suggested on the NAR REALTOR® Safety site. Please share this with all of your agent colleagues to help make sure everyone in our industry remains safe in September as well as the rest of the year.
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More States See Rising Home Prices

Home prices nationwide, including for distressed sales, rose 7.4 percent year-over-year in July, according to CoreLogic's latest reading of its Home Price Index.

"While home prices have clearly moderated nationwide since the spring, the geographic drivers of price increases are shifting," says Sam Khater, deputy chief economist for CoreLogic. "Entering this year, price increases were led by Western and Southern states, but over the last few months, Northeastern and Midwestern states are migrating to the forefront of home-price rankings.” Read complete article.

Source: REALTORMag, Thursday, September 4, 2014.
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Want to Try DocuSign for FREE? There's Still Time!

If you've thought about using DocuSign, now's your chance to try it for FREE! Now, through September 30 only, DocuSign is offering a FREE trial.

If you wish to continue using DocuSign after September, one-year access (until September 1, 2015) is only $170. Contact Polly Clark at ext. 8595 to start your FREE trial and experience the benefits and convenience of this service.
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The Role of the Credit Score When Buying a Home

REALTOR® Magazine has shared a video to help you teach your customers about credit scores. In it, Neekia McCoy of REALTORS® Federal Credit Union talks about the topic from a lender’s point of view and offers tips on how households can improve their credit scores. Watch the video here.
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NAR's Existing Home Sales Report [INFOGRAPHIC]

A new infographic released by the Keeping Current Matters Crew illustrates the increase in average sales and average sale price across America, specifically the Midwest. Download a PDF copy of the graphic to use in your seller meetings and presentations.


Source: THe KCM Crew, Keeping Current Matters, Friday, August 29, 2014.
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Pending Sales of U.S. Existing Homes Increase More Than Forecast

Contracts to purchase previously owned homes rose more than forecast in July, a sign of renewed momentum in residential real estate.

The pending home sales index gained 3.3 percent after a 1.3 percent decrease in June that was larger than initially reported, the National Association of Realtors said today in Washington. Read complete article.

Source: Lorraine Woellert, Bloomberg, Thursday, August 28, 2014.
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Share the Updated Listing Syndication Video with Your Clients

In response to multiple requests from agents, we have updated the video in which David Cooper explains BHG's withdrawal from 3rd-Party Listing Syndicators.

We encourage you to watch the updated version and share it (URL: http://youtu.be/JeENJynvaWQ) with your clients when and if the question of listing syndication arises. We have also provided a letter from David Cooper explaining Kansas City Homes' position, as well as a waiver for your clients to sign if they still wish to display their homes on 3rd-Party sites.

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Carve Out a Little Autumn Marketing with Pumpkin Postcards

Fall is approaching and soon there will be a nip in the air and gourds on the ground. Share the most popular pumpkin patches around the city with your clients with a monthly postcard. The September offering in our monthly postcard series features the names and locations of pumpkin patch family fun around town this fall.

Your portrait and contact information are positioned prominently at the top of the card and you can even add a customized message to the back. Sending out these cards is a great way to stay top-of-mind with your clients while providing them with information they want.

Order your postcards to go out in September today, by visiting the DMS Postcard website. If you have any questions about the annual postcard program, please contact the Marketing Department.
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The Cost of Renting vs. Buying [INFOGRAPHIC]

Have some potential buyers who are still on the fence about continuing to rent? Consider sharing this infographic from Keeping Current Matters which breaks down the true cost renting over time vs. buying a home. Download a PDF version of this graphic to include in your presentations.


Source: KeepingCurrentMatters.com, Friday, September 5, 2014.
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Move Over Millennials, Better Homes And Gardens Real Estate Reveals Homebuying Dreams Of Gen Z Teens

Today’s teens will likely never wait for transportation for more than two minutes, can buy nearly anything with the click of a button and have it delivered in 24 hours, and can instantly consult a cast of 1,000 of their closest friends on any decision large or small. These once far-fetched notions are the reality of a generation of teens 21 million strong.

You may think traditional dreams wouldn’t fit into their modern world – but you’d be wrong. In the first study of its kind, national findings released today by Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate reveal this generation of teens ages 13-17, part of Generation Z, is very traditional in their views toward homeownership and is willing to give up modern luxuries for the mainstream definition of the American Dream. Read complete article.

Source: bhgrealestate.com, Tuesday, September 9, 2014.
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Speaker Spotlight: Sherry Chris to Be Featured Panelist at RISMedia’s Power Broker Forum

Attendees at this year’s NAR Annual Conference and Expo will have a special opportunity to hear several of the nation’s most successful industry leaders break down their strategies for success at RISMedia’s 19th annual Power Broker Forum, titled, “Power Broker Strategies for Enhancing the Consumer Experience.”

RISMedia is excited to welcome back Sherry Chris, President and CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, as a featured speaker for RISMedia’s Power Broker Forum this year. Read complete article.

Source: RISMedia, September, 2014.
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Social Security: Guarding Your Reputation Online

Markets are on an upswing, which means your office is juggling more prospects, more clients and more paperwork. As things speed up, it’s easy to let good online and technology safety habits drop down on your list of priorities. With that in mind, here are some tips for staying safe on social media and guarding your reputation online.

Reputation is more than just you. Take the time to set up a social media policy for your office, spelling out what is appropriate and what is not. What seems obvious to you as a manager might be news to a staff member. Getting everyone on the same page will clear up misunderstandings down the road. Read complete article.

Source: Marc Gould, RISMedia, September 2014.
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Don't Miss the Chance to Win $500 Just for Hosting an Open House

September is National Open House Month and we are asking you to participate by hosting Open Houses each weekend during the month!

To promote the event, BHGRE® launched a national Open House Sweepstakes that allows consumers a chance to win $2,500 toward their first mortgage payment. Consumers can enter by going to any BHGRE open house and uploading pictures of themselves next to open house signs, and then posting these pictures using their favorite social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter or Instagram) with a provided hashtag. The agent who shows the house to the winning consumer also wins a $500 cash prize! So encourage your prospects to get social!

To help you host the most successful open house events possible, take advantage of the many resources proved by BHGRE national on the Greenhouse.

What better way to showcase a new listing and impress homeowners than by participating in the national BHGRE Open House Month? Get your listings ready and start coordinating your open houses today!
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Economists Grow More Optimistic About Housing’s Outlook

The strengthening job market has more economists gaining confidence about the direction of the housing market over the next two years, according to a newly released Reuters poll of 29 housing analysts, including investors and economists.

The economists surveyed expect existing-home sales to increase to 5.25 million units in the first three months of 2015. Currently, existing-home sales stand at 5.09 million. In May, the economists surveyed had expected much slower gains at 5.1 million expected in the first quarter of 2015. Read complete article.

Source: REALTORMag, Friday, August 29, 2014.
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Special Clothes for a Special Closing

On Thursday, August 21, Susan Bowers (8101) showed up at the office for a routine closing appointment and was met with a heart-warming surprise. The buyers, a young couple purchasing their very first home, arrived excited and dressed to nines. Were they on their way to a formal event after closing? Had they just come from a special occasion, a wedding perhaps?

No.

They had one reason and one reason only why they came in looking their very best - because that is how much buying their first home meant to them.

This is great reminder of just how precious and special buying a home - especially a first home - really is. For agents, closings are everyday occurrences. They can become rote and "just part of the job". Buying a home is a life-changing experience. Being able to take part in it and share in a new home owner's joy is an indescribable feeling that one must never forget. It's certainly one that Susan Bower's never will.
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2014 CE Schedule Released

The preliminary list of classes for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Kansas City Homes' 2014 Continuing Education series is now available.

Take a moment to download and review it so you can make plans to attend the classes you need for the coming year. Check back often as this list will evolve and be updated in the future. If you have any questions about the classes offered or how to register for them, please contact Elaine Cavener, Education Director at 913-661-1486 or via email.
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