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It's Here! Introducing Your New & Improved CMA Tool!

Our dynamic CMA, My Home Compare, is the 2nd largest My Home eVantage program and we are excited to announce some substantial upgrades to it:

Improve User Experience - We’ve collected a lot of feedback over the years . . . you'll see an improvement to how fast the website information loads and design enhancements for the client side of the program.

Increase Usage of Program - After being out for three years, My Home Compare has more than 2,400 active users (they've logged on in the last 30 days) . . . that's about half as many users as My Home Search (nearly 5,000 users). We think this number has potential to grow!

Add In-Program Advertising - On one of the green tabs, we've added "Ready to Sell?". We hope that users will take a look at the information on this tab and when they're ready to sell, we hope they click on the button, which sends an email to you.

As with any technology improvement, we've done a lot of testing and debugging. If you are using the program and think you've discovered a "bug", please send us more information at helpdesk@kansascityhomes.com.
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Overland Park Named Best Midsize City to Raise Children

MyLife.com set out to determine the best communities in the country to raise children. They compiled a list of 189 midsized U.S. cities and ranked them based on crime rate, school rankings, parks per capita, average family income and cost of living.

When the calculations were completed, Kansas City suburb Overland Park, KS topped the list! Here's what help push Overland Park above all the other cities:

"The heart of the Midwest is well represented by Overland Park, which secured the top spot on our list. Their public schools are the best reason why, as they came in fifth in that category. They also came in 25th in public parks, and considering the massive soccer complex located along 135th street, this comes as no surprise. Getting your child a little exercise has never been easier."

The Kansas City area was further represented in the top 10 as Olathe, KS took the number 7 spot. View the complete list of city rankings.

Source: Christian Neeser, MyLife.com, Tuesday, August 5, 2014.
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Order Your 2015 Calendars Today

If you placed an order last year, you will receive an email invitation on Tuesday, August 12 from ACC Publishing with a link directing you to their site where you can:

View the 2015 photos. (Wall Calendars Only - see attached document)
•Update any information on their account
•Approve or make changes to their imprint
•Select how they would like their calendars shipped
•Place their order and pay for it with secure checkout

Download this document which shows you how to order ONLY IF you have not previously ordered calendars.
The cost for desk calendars starts at $2.84 each and wall calendars start at $2.62 each. There is a minimum order quantity is 100 for either desk or wall calendars and discounts are given for orders of larger quantities.
ACC Publishing is using its online ordering process for the second year - if you need help, there is online chat support or you can call 262-723-6926. Order deadline for calendars is Friday, August 29.
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Home Prices…Where are They Headed?

Today, many real estate conversations center on housing prices and where they may be headed. That is why we like the Home Price Expectation Survey. Every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of over one hundred economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists about where prices are headed over the next five years. They then average the projections of all 100+ experts into a single number. Read complete article.

Source: The KCM Crew, Wednesday, August 6, 2014.
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Win 3 Free Hotel Nights at Fusion!

The Fusion 2015 - March 22-24, 2015 - countdown continues and you have a chance to win an exclusive summer giveaway...Three FREE nights at Fusion, the national Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Convention!

This entry is available to all registrants who have completed their registration by August 22. Two winners will be selected at random and notified in September. Register today for your chance to win.

Hurry! There's only one month left to receive the early bird rate of $329 per registration. This price is only guaranteed through September 1, 2014, so book soon.

Discounted hotel rates for Fusion 2015 are available at the ARIA Resort and Casino. Book your room at BHGRE's rate of just $150.00 per night plus applicable taxes.
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Mastering Your Tablet: Shortcuts

If you are a real estate agent (and also, alive) hopefully you’re using some sort of technology that can help you stay organized and in touch while on the go. Smartphones are always safe bets – they’re easy to use and combine email, phone and web all in one small, simple device. However, if you’ve mastered your phone and are hungry for more, it may be time to take the next step into the world of tablets. Read complete article.

Source: Nick Caruso, RISMedia's Housecall, Wednesday, July 23, 2014.
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It's Here: Summer Issue of Distinctive Collection Digital Magazine

We invite you to page through the Summer Issue of the Distinctive Collection digital magazine to see more than 35 spectacular Kansas City area homes, priced from the $600Ks.

From Loch Lloyd to Mission Hills, you'll see stunning interior and exterior photos, as well as details about some of the very best homes for sale in Kansas City.

Share this e-magazine with your prospects and clients today who are searching for their next Kansas City dream home.

The Distinctive Collection digital magazine is a quarterly publication. The next issue will be available on October 1.
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Online Reputation Management: 5 Ways to Put Your Best Face Forward

By now, everyone knows that most home buyers start their search online. Once they’ve sloshed through page after page of homes for sale, buyers start thinking seriously about other decisions, such as, “Who will we work with to purchase our new home?”

To answer that question, buyers also search online. What will they find when they start checking up on you?

Agent ratings and reviews have become increasingly important for real estate professionals. Here are five ways to make sure you’re putting your best face forward. Read complete article.

Source: RISMedia, Monday, July 28, 2014.
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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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REALTOR® Safety Month is Coming!

NAR Pulse—In honor of September being REALTOR® Safety Month, NAR is hosting a FREE REALTOR® Safety webinar on Sept. 9, 2014, at 11:00 a.m. CST. In “Safety Tips to Share with Sellers,” Sergeant Preston Taylor will discuss how homeowners can safeguard their personal property while opening their house to potential buyers.

During this free NAR REALTOR® Safety webinar, presented by Sergeant Preston Taylor, we will discuss valuable advice and steps to share with your clients to help protect them against crime.

You will learn:

  • Items that need to be safely put away
  • How thieves are able to access personal information
  • What thieves target at open houses and how to be prepared
  • Safety tips to remember before and after showing a property

If you would like to take part in this webinar register online now.
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Rethinking the 55+ Market

Someone said to me recently, “Sixty-five is the new forty-five.” We chuckled, but the more I thought about it, the more I found myself in full agreement. With more and more people working beyond traditional retirement age and the advances in modern medicine, the lines between middle and late adulthood are becoming a bit blurred. Read complete article.

Source: Nikki Buckelew, REALTOR.org, Thursday, May 1, 2014.
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June Sales are Up

The REAL Trends Housing Market Report for June 2014 shows that housing sales increased 5.1 percent from the same month a year ago, a substantial improvement over the five prior months of 2014. The annual rate of new and existing home sales for June 2014 was 5.880 million units up from a rate of 5.596 million in June 2013.

Housing prices rose an average of 3.2 percent from June 2013 which is the slowest rate of home price appreciation in the past six months. The downward trend in average home price appreciation is good news on the affordability front.

Housing unit sales for June 2014 increased 8.4 percent in the South, the best performance in all regions. The Midwest saw sales units increase 7.3 percent and the Northeast had a 4.3 percent increase. The Western region had a small decrease of 1.7 percent. Read complete article.

Source: Steve Murray, REAL Trends, Wednesday, July 16, 2014.
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Millennials Outnumber Baby Boomers: A Cue for Real Estate?

The Millennial generation is larger than the baby boomers — 87 million versus 76 million — and they’re expected to be a huge force in the real estate market in the coming years.

The number of households in their 30s is expected to increase by 2.7 million over the coming decade, which should boost demand for new housing, according to a housing report by Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies.

Millennials are not only bigger in size, but they’re also more diverse, U.S. Census data shows. Only 56 percent of Millennials are white. Read complete article.

Source: REALTORMag, Tuesday, August 5, 2014.
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BHGREKCH Represents 3 of KC's 5 Most Expensive Homes

ThisIsKC.com has rounded up and listed the give most luxruious listings in the Kansas City area. Three of these distinctive domiciles are listed with agents right here at BHGRE Kansas City Homes:

11401 Meadow Lane (Leawood, KS)
Linda McClung (PV/SL)

5550 Ward Parkway (Kansas City, MO)
The Nancy Ward Real Estate Group (PV/SL)

5650 Ward Parkway (Kansas City, MO)
The Nancy Ward Real Estate Group (PV/SL)

Click here to view all five homes.

Source: ThisIsKC.com, July 2014.
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Be a Part of KCRAR Leadership in 2015

Do you want to influence the real estate industry and the direction of KCRAR?

KCRAR members who want to make a difference are encouraged to apply today for a position on the KCRAR Board. The deadline for applications is August 15, so don't wait!

Vsit KCRAR.com for more information and an application.
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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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