We recently drove to see Susie’s sister Pam and her family in Denver, Colorado. We saw a lot of different real estate markets along the way and some great scenery…soaring blue skies decorated by huge mountain ranges as far as the eye could see. Such a refreshing change to our every-day stoplights and pavement.
Recently, Susie and I went on a date…..we traveled to downtown Memphis to spend the night at the Madison Hotel and go to the Joe Walsh concert. Since we intend to write about our destinations, real estate offices, and different markets I thought I should include downtown Memphis. I grew up here so will share my memories of downtown through the years.
Weichert Realtors is a national corporate charity partner of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. As the local franchise, Weichert Realtors-BenchMark and BenchMark Mortgage are also involved and huge supporters of St. Jude. To that end, we are proud to announce that we are major event sponsors for St. Jude Barrel Jam at Shelby Showplace Arena. If you enjoy watching show horses, then you probably know what barrel racing is all about. If you aren’t familiar with the sport, then let me tell you about it….
Barrel racing is done by mostly young women on highly trained quarter horses. Quarter horses are among the fastest horses in the world in short bursts and in the quarter mile. They can also stop and turn on a dime. Three barrels are placed in the arena in a triangular pattern. The horses and riders are timed on their ability to complete the pattern around all three barrels and exit the arena. These horses are tremendous athletes and it’s fast and exciting to watch!
As a major sponsor for this event Weichert Realtors BenchMark and BenchMark Mortgage logos are on the barrels this year! We are getting a lot of Facebook love from St. Jude this week, they have posted thanking us for our participation and asked their followers to like our page. We love supporting such a wonderful cause and hope that we will excite others to join in our support of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, as it is near and dear to our hearts.
A friend of mine recently sent me several links from different news outlets listing Memphis, Tennessee – my home town – as a contender in travel articles as best places to eat or vacation. They followed it up with a negative comment joking about our city, and it got me thinking. It is not uncommon to hear negative remarks from friends, family and neighbors about Memphis, locals seem to be the hardest on our town. It’s like it has been imprinted on our brains over the years. So when we read or hear something positive about the bluff city, I think it surprises us. But isn’t this the wrong way to help our city thrive? Shouldn’t we stop that way of thinking for our future generations? Memphis has so much to offer, we should embrace these articles and encourage folks to spread the good news – scary right?
Memphis is known for Elvis Presley, the Mississippi River, The Peabody Hotel, The Rendevous, Beale Street and of course the best Barbecue around – period. It’s good enough for The Grizzlies, Justin Timberlake and Penny Hardaway to call it home. Time.com lists Memphis, TN as #3 in Best Domestic Destinations! Let’s soak it up Memphis! As the article says, “With the drop in airfares, a new Graceland hotel, and all that great barbecue, you won’t be singing the blues here” We’re even ahead of Vegas….Somewhere up there “Elvis is smiling”.
Check out the article here:
So what does this have to do with our business? Well, EVERYTHING! We should be sharing the positive press and bragging about it every chance we get. Selling Memphis is our job, as realtors we aren’t just selling someone a house, we are selling them a lifestyle. We are helping them find that perfect location and all the amenities they require in a home. We are telling those that are re-locating for work what a great town they are moving to, and how much they will love it here. If we’re not, then we aren’t doing our job properly. So next time I hear someone crack a joke on our town…I’ll make sure to tell them how much I love it here and why!
Check out Justin Timberlake’s newest hit about Memphis here:
Happy New Year!
January is a great month in this business. Broker/owners are reviewing their company numbers for last year, business planning with agents, recruiting new agents, and planning improvements for the New Year. Agents should be planning their year to increase their skills and their business. New buyers and sellers are getting spooled up after months of school, football, and holidays.
Look at the amount of change in our business over the last 10 years. 2007 was the top of the market and we were blowing and going. Then the Mortgage Meltdown, sales slowed, agents took “real jobs”, real estate and mortgage companies cut back or closed completely, foreclosures increased, short sales increased, etc. How has your personal life changed over the last 10 years? Huge changes too, I’ll bet.
And for 2015? Foreclosures and short sales down, folks now leaving “real jobs“ to get into real estate, multiple offer situations, and overall a renewed enthusiasm. Locally, the municipal schools were formed, Memphis got a new mayor, and The Pyramid became a Bass Pro Shop! On the personal side, 2015 brought Susie’s daughter, Kendall, her husband, Mark, and grandson, Coleman from Nashville back to Memphis, her son Bailey is moving up in the restaurant biz, my daughter Bailee landed a big job in Atlanta, and my son Tyler and Kendall got their real estate licenses.
I have made enough new year’s resolutions through the years to know that for 2016 I won’t eat right and exercise, I won’t clean up my office, and I won’t get caught up on my to do list. So maybe the baby steps approach this year. I ate right this morning. I will exercise today. I’ll work a little on cleaning up the office. And this blog post has been on my to do list. All in all, a better effort than yesterday.
Instead of focusing so much on the finite calendar year, I think I’ll try to take a moment each day to improve somewhere even if just a small step. And instead of setting goals with only year end in mind, I’ll try to consider what the next 10 years might bring. Maybe that will make 2016 a good year.
Finally, Susie and I said we wanted to do something different for Super Bowl Sunday so we will be staying in a hotel room with screened porch overlooking the retail floor at Bass Pro! Come watch the sunset with us.
Have a good day, year, and decade!
Hey everyone, It’s Susie. I’m finally trying to take some time to reflect on some of the big moments from 2015. Getting the van completed was such a relief and accomplishment. It all happened just in time for our trips and of course football season & tailgating!
It is finally ready for the road….thanks to these guys
After much anticipation we set off on the maiden voyage in our new Sprinter/RV/mobile office to Destin, the first leg of our 15 day working vacation. The house on Miramar beach had been reserved for months, kids & new grandbaby were in route. Ric & I breathed a sigh of relief, on the road again, 9 months of waiting vanished like mist in the morning sun. We finally made it to Destin, FL for our family vacation. Despite a few of the crew getting a nasty 24hour bug the week was fantastic and filled with good food, lots of baby giggles, sand and sunshine.
Traveling with a disability is difficult at best & I appreciate why many disabled people choose to stay home. However, staying home is not in my husband’s DNA. Finding a company to design and build a custom van that would allow us greater mobility is just the kind of challenge Ric relishes, he saw the project as an opportunity rather than a problem. After much online research & even more phone calls we finally settled on Midwest Automotive Designs out of Elkhart Indiana. Creating an accessible van like we envisioned is not a simple build, in fact, Midwest was the only company willing to tackle the job. Every inch had to be carefully considered & measured with a wheelchair in mind. Many design obstacles, decisions and changes came into play in the months that followed. Imagine designing a limousine camper van complete with sofa bed, mini kitchen, shower & toilet, vanity, wardrobe & bar all with enough space to accommodate a 25″ wide wheelchair! It took some time to say the least but the finished product was well worth the wait.
After a nice long week in Destin with the kids our next stop was Orlando, FL for the Weichert Realtors Convention where we spent several days with brokers and agents from all over the country. We were entertained and inspired by great speakers and engaged during break-out sessions. It was a refreshing look at real estate and opportunities that the market may bring over the coming years.
Since convention, Memphis, Tennessee – my home town – has been on two different “Top Ten” lists for markets to watch in 2016, affordable cost of living and job availability.
“In addition, each of the markets on the list is in high demand, with 60% more listing page views than the U.S. overall and inventory that sells 16 days faster than the U.S. average. Surging demand in each market can be attributed to growing household formation, a prosperous job market, and low unemployment rates as well as large populations of key demographics. Older millennials (25 to 34 years old), younger Gen Xers (35 to 44 years old), and retirees (65 to 74 years old) will be driving home sales in 2016.”
Stay tuned as we begin 2016! I look forward to sharing more as you follow us on our upcoming adventures in life and real estate.
Pictured above: Jeff Grebe, Knoxville,TN Weichert Realtors – Advantage Plus, Ric Bowman, Germantown, TN Weichert Realtors BenchMark, and Tom Andrews, Nashville, TN Weichert Realtors – The Andrews Group
Our new accessible, RV, Limo, tailgate vehicle was delivered 2 days before the trip. 600 miles from Elkhart, Indiana to Memphis, Tennessee and perfect. We load up to head to a Tigers game and 5 minutes on the road the “coolant low” indicator lights up and I smell the leak. Towed to dealership at 9pm. picked up Friday at 5pm, left for Destin at 10am Saturday. Super nice van but still a typical machine. I used to get a kick out of my mother -in-law when she said “I don’t understand my car was fine yesterday”. That’s because yesterday it wasn’t broken 🙂
The first trip was 2000 miles, 10 days in destin, 3 days at Weichert Convention in Orlando, and a night in Destin on the return. We expected challenges and problems along the way but had confidence it would work out fine. The van met all the needs of the trip. A few people got sick for a day or so, the weather was a little cold and cloudy, but overall a great trip. Good food, great scenery, and a lot of quality time with family, friends, and coworkers. Miramar Beach, Grayton Beach, Seaside, Seagrove, Lake Bueno Vista, Universal Studios, St Joe’s, Mexico Beach, Panama City, Watercolor Inn, and of course the Crab Trap, just to mention a few stops.
Our 2 newest recruits are pictured from the convention. Tyler Bowman and Kyle Beard. Tyler had a listing that sold while we were gone and Kyle is close to taking his test. These young guys got a lot of attention at the convention. Tyler spoke to Jim Weichert twice! What a trip they had! A beach house, 4 days at a golf resort in Panama city, Weichert convention and the Alabama Arkansas game in Tuscaloosa on the way back to Memphis. No flats, no running out of gas, or lost keys…which if you know these guys that is a successful trip!
We visited with Brokers and owners from Connecticut, Michigan, Nashville, Knoxville, Huntsville, Miami, and Houston, just to name a few. It is always great to exchange ideas with others that reinforce Weichert’s ongoing efforts to support our owners, agents, and clients.
I am really looking forward to sharing all the info with our agents so that we can continue to improve our service to customers and clients.
Usually when someone says “to make a long story short” the story goes on and on. I’ll try to do better. Here is the who, what , when, where, and why.
In 2009 we got married, blended our families, bought a house, and purchased a Weichert Realtors franchise. In 2010, just before our first wedding anniversary, we were in a boating accident which left Susie in a wheelchair. Incredible how a split second can change a life. This event lead us in many directions. This blog is one of them.