The 250 People Who Should Be in Your Sphere of Influence

How to Build a Smarter Book of Business

Recently we’ve been talking a LOT about data. Big Data. Smart analytic data. Specialty Nielsen Prizm data. Geographic data based on radial search technology. Demographic data selects such as age, gender, income, and property data. We’re working hard to ensure that we can be your trusted resource for all of these data sources and then some.

On thing that has to start with you, the agent, however, is your sphere of influence database. It’s truly the foundation for your business — and it is the difference between always chasing new commissions, or having a reliable, consistent referral base you can count on. Want to build a business that is strong, sustainable, and competitive and that you can sell when you’re ready to retire? Start here. Now. Long before the end of the year — and you’ll help yourself to get on track to average more transactions per year, every year.

Think about this –if you had 250 people in a database that you consistently stay in touch with and who you develop a RELATIONSHIP with, then who will they call when they have a real estate question, need or referral? YOU. If just 10% of those folks listed, sold or referred you per year, what would that mean for your income?

“But building a database is HARD!” (Ever hear that one?) It doesn’t have to be and it doesn’t have to be done all at once, but what it does need to be is a consistent part of your weekly business habits. NOT having a sphere of influence list is hands-down, the single biggest obstacle to agent success. Not having a database you can market to will keep you in the not-so-fun cycle of always chasing new business, without the benefit of ever gaining any traction. And think about this — if data inputting is an issue — there are lots of college kids still home for the summer that would love an opportunity to make a few dollars just for a few days work of inputting your data.

So where do you start? Pick a date to work on it and commit. Open a spreadsheet on your computer or tablet. Or choose an online database management system. Then ask yourself (and answer) these 30 Questions:

  1. What are the names of the members of your family?
  2. What are the names of your spouse’s family?
  3. What are the names of your “extended” family?
  4. What is the name of your best friend?
  5. What is the name of your spouse’s best friend?
  6. What are the names of your very close friends?
  7. What are the names of your spouse’s very close friends?
  8. What are the names of your children’s friends’ parents?
  9. What are your children’s teachers’ names?
  10. What are your children’s coaches’ names?
  11. What are your children’s principals’ names?
  12. What are your children’s dentists’ names?
  13. What are your children’s doctors’ names?
  14. What are your children’s optometrists’ names?
  15. Who cuts your children’s hair?
  16. Who sells you your children’s clothes?
  17. Who is on the PTA Board at your children’s school?
  18. Who is your children’s Sunday school teacher?
  19. Who cuts your hair?
  20. Who does your dry cleaning?
  21. Who does your pedicures, manicures, facials?
  22. Who do you purchase gasoline from?
  23. Who services your car(s)?
  24. Who do you buy tires from?
  25. Who sold you your current car(s)?
  26. Who have you purchased cars from in the past?
  27. Who cleans your car(s)?
  28. Who is your mailman?
  29. Who do you know at your church?
  30. Who do you see at the convenience store you most often go to?

Next, add every customer you’ve ever had. Add the neighbors. Add old business colleagues. In fact, click here to get a copy of our BusinessBASETM, download it at no cost and read it thoroughly. On page six you’ll find 150 questions like the ones above that you need to ask yourself to build a sphere of influence list of at least 250 people. It will also tell you all the fields you will want to set up for each contact such as name, address, email, occupation, etc.

Then take ACTION. Start a touch marketing campaign to these folks every 21-35 days. Consider a series of postcards such as holiday, or recipe postcards, that will keep you top of mind, take just minutes to order and send and helps you incubate each person on our new list until you have the opportunity to see or speak to them.

And DON’T wait until you have all 250 or more in your list to start. Remember that old saying by Arthur Ashe? “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” Momentum doesn’t just happen. You have to get started somewhere. If you only get 25-50 people put into your book of business this month. Start sending to them. Or Make it a goal to just put 100 in this weekend.

 

The 4 Steps to Social Media Marketing

One of Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is to Begin with the End in Mind. This infographic from BigThunk and Number 8 Communications does just that – recognizing that you need to establish your goals first when looking to your social media marketing strategy.

I especially appreciate this infographic because it doesn’t simply speak about conversions – it speaks to the other business uses of social media: Brand Marketing, Thought Leaderhsip, Service and Sales Prospecting. Much of the strength of social media doesn’t come from the immediate push… it’s the echos and volume that are established over time.

4-steps-social-media-strategy

Source: marketingtechblog.com

Why Use AMPI?

AMPI is the national association of real estate professionals that have, since 1956, gathered under laws and codes of ethics and conduct to create a reliable, trustworthy an efficient real estate environment in Mexico.

AMPI consists of separate autonomous sections all throughout the nation, as well as more than 4,000 associates and affiliates. Each section is independent and has its own board of directors, only surpassed by a national board of directors comprised of twenty associates from all over the republic.

Developed over the years with the input and knowledge of its members, AMPI is much more than just a collection of offices. AMPI has been a solid and recognized institution in Mexico for the past 27 years. It was originally established in 1956 and was consolidated in 1980. AMPI is currently represented in all the principle cities and regions of Mexico stretching from Tijuana to Cancun.

The Riviera Nayarita, Vallarta and Compostela chapters of AMPI are dedicated to promote the best practices in real estate by providing its members with education to reinforce the standards of ethics that give our industry the credibility which our clients deserve.

AMPI is committed to giving our membership access to a multiple listing service that forms the platform from which our industry can expand locally and into other markets while giving our members precise and up to date information that is vital to continuous improvement and growth.

Real Estate Transactions Go Green

It’s easier than ever to put a green spin on housing, but not always quite how you may think.

“Green” real estate often refers to planet-friendly construction materials, energy efficiency and sustainability in both form and function for new and existing homes.

The sense that Earth’s resources aren’t limitless is finally starting to hit home with many housing consumers. That can extend to real estate transactions as well, by eliminating paperwork and accomplishing more electronically.

Real Estate Transactions Go Green

With virtually everyone equipped with a smartphone, there’s no end to what can be achieved in a green way, especially in the real estate arena.

Smartphones have streamlined almost everything we do, putting us in constant contact with friends and family, colleagues, and nearly limitless information.

With the ability to research anything right at our fingertips, it’s easier than ever to access and aggregate information while on the go – and with less paper waste.

From apps designed to help us get the most out of a house hunt to immediate document turnaround via mobile email and communications with a real estate agent, the process of buying a house has never been more convenient, efficient and effective.

Green real estate transactions

Gone are the days of slogging through the big book of paper listings in an agent’s office before heading out for the home search.

Instead of sifting through reams of fliers and handouts, you get instant property details, including photos, videos and information from your agent sent right to your phone.

Once you’ve found your dream house, your agent can communicate your interest immediately to the seller’s agent and get the ball rolling on a sale.

Because paperless transactions require less time, negotiations get a boost and there’s less waiting. Technology allows the convenience of digitally initialing and signing off on multiple forms and documents rather than relying upon a plethora of printouts.

National Association of REALTOR®, designated ePro certified agents and similar real estate company designations are trained and experienced to be more conversant in the high-tech approach to real estate transaction.

Eliminating paperwork gives your agent more time to spend focusing on you, your housing needs and your home search or home sale.

You likely are already mobile ready for your home buy or sale.

To learn how technologically “green” your agent is, talk to him or her about the various ways he or she deploys technology to benefit you.

Author: Kim Clark

Why Use AMPI?

AMPI is the national association of real estate professionals that have, since 1956, gathered under laws and codes of ethics and conduct to create a reliable, trustworthy an efficient real estate environment in Mexico.

AMPI consists of separate autonomous sections all throughout the nation, as well as more than 4,000 associates and affiliates.

Each section is independent and has its own board of directors, only surpassed by a national board of directors comprised of twenty associates from all over the republic.

Developed over the years with the

input and knowledge of its members, AMPI is much more than just a collection of offices.

AMPI has been a solid and recognized institution in Mexico for the past 27 years. It was originally established in 1956 and was consolidated in 1980.

AMPI is currently represented in all the principle cities and regions of Mexico stretching from Tijuana to Cancun.

The Riviera Nayarita, Vallarta and Compostela chapters of AMPI are dedicated to promote the best practices in real estate by providing its members with education to reinforce the standards of ethics that give our industry the credibility which our clients deserve.

AMPI is committed to giving our membership access to a multiple listing service that forms the platform from which our industry can expand locally and into other markets while giving our members precise and up to date information that is vital to continuous improvement and growth.

 

Vallarta Culture: Moving Along

As in the phrase “Move along, folks, nothing to see here…” we have found the events of last week somewhat inflated. Puerto Vallarta hosts the North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA) this year, as the city plays host to their annual conference from May 4-9, 2015. Attendees will observe a city brimming with exciting and fun things to do. Their activities will include special performances of music and dance; zip line tours; water adventures such as fishing, snorkeling, dolphin and whale watching; horseback riding, jungle hikes and ecological tours; beach clubs; golf; and Puerto Vallarta’s incredible cuisine.

May Day has been a time for protest and demonstrations since the USA and their unions first called for the introduction of an eight-hour work day by forming a general strike to press for these demands in 1886. Businesses normally are closed on this day, in Puerto Vallarta as well as cities all over the world. This year, demonstrators clashed with police in Istanbul, Turkey; Milan, Italy; Seattle, Washington, USA, resulting in scores of arrests and injuries. Istanbul’s Taksim Square had 10,000 police stationed around its perimeter.

In Puerto Vallarta six guys in two pickup trucks drove to three banks, busted the windows and tossed Molotov cocktails through the doors. Those were their weapons. As afore mentioned, the banks were closed, empty. This group also set fires at five gas stations. Storage tanks did not blow up and the perpetrators warned everyone to get out of their way to avoid harm and injury. It is rumored these incidents were carried out by the Jalisco New Generation Cartel to show how quickly they can mobilize. They also were reportedly responsible for events in other areas of Jalisco and neighboring states.

Social media is not a reliable source for our news. Facebook was the only place the fires of Puerto Vallarta were difficult to extinguish. Amazingly, an automobile on the Guadalajara-Colima highway overheated and was reported, repeatedly, as cartel activity. News in the USA was highly focused on news of the day that six Baltimore police officers had been charged in the death of a citizen.

The evening of May 1 in Puerto Vallarta found people on the beaches, walking the Malecón and filling bars and restaurants. Locally the query of the day was where to watch the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight, which turned out to be as humdrum as the 6’O’Clock news in Puerto Vallarta.

We expect the North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA) to report that Puerto Vallarta is, indeed, all it’s purported to be: [Truly a world class tourist destination, named “Friendliest City” by Conde Nast in 2001, “Best place in the world to retire” by AARP (North American Association of Retired Persons), “Best Vacation Destination in Mexico” by USNews.com in 2010, “Most Romantic Place in Mexico” and “Favorite Beach Destination in

Mexico” by About.com in 2012, “Best place for Conventions” in a convention marketing magazine and listed in “Top 10 Destinations in Mexico” by TripAdvisor in 2015].

Que es cómo es.


Mexico is moving in the right direction, working to raise the real estate standards to protect buyer and seller interests. AMPI (our National Real Estate Association) plays a key role in the real estate industry in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, working closely with local, state and national governments. Our local AMPI Association is leading the country in developing and implementing real estate standards.  To become members of our local AMPI Association Real Estate professionals sign our Bylaws that require our members to follow our Ethical Code of Conduct;  to use our contract forms which have been legally vetted to protect buyers and sellers; to participate in and comply with our MLS Rules and Regulation along with using the shared database. Our Bylaws, Code of Ethics, MLS Systems, Contracts and our other systems are constantly improved on through the expertise and experience of our members.  Find a Committed AMPI Professional Here

Vallarta Real Estate: Our Monthly Reminder!

Safety in Mexico

The subject of safety in Mexico comes up often. A media machine in the US is not short on news these days but when shootings happen anywhere, it does garner attention.  Puerto Vallarta is a long way from Cancun, comparable to the distance between Los Angeles and New York, or Vancouver BC and Toronto.  Not to say that Cancun is a violent place; it’s just been in the news a lot the past few days. Reports have been very general and never get into the specifics. A woman was killed and the details are grisly, but this was no schoolmarm. It’s hard for some people to embrace the fact that a woman might be the target of violence when it comes to cartel activity. However, a female leader controls drugs sales in Cancun and Playa del Carmen. Doña Lety, as she is known, was a police officer and with her son, is wanted on multiple drug trafficking charges. These people tend to go after one another and civilians are rarely at any risk.

Our advice is to stay away from areas that are known to be shady and probably dangerous. Where are these places in Puerto Vallarta? There are none. Puerto Vallarta is safe downtown; in the marina; Mismaloya and in the jungle above; Yelapa, Las Animas, Quimixto, reachable only by boat; the back roads that lead to spas, all-you-can-eat shrimp restaurants and golf courses; the beach; dance clubs; cruise ship terminal…we can’t think of anywhere in Puerto Vallarta we would be afraid to venture.

We have always recommended using common sense when traveling in and around Puerto Vallarta and that goes for any city, anywhere across the globe. There are always pockets of unrest that can be sought out if dangerously is really how one wants to spend their vacation. When going to Chicago, we limit our activities to such things as the Art Institute, Millennium Park, the Russian Tea Room, a show at the Chicago Theater and other delightful pastimes. We manage to avoid visiting Riverdale, Fuller or Washington Park areas, where scientific data has determined tourists should steer clear of. Same for Mexico; there are places we would shun, such as Tepito in Mexico City, where thieves will gladly relieve you of your wallet in such a quick manner, you might not know it’s gone until you reach into your pocket to make a purchase.

It’s not rocket science. It’s easy to stay safe when traveling. Don’t try to buy drugs. Our best advice.

Que es cómo es.



Mexico is moving in the right direction, working to raise the real estate standards to protect buyer and seller interests. AMPI (our National Real Estate Association) plays a key role in the real estate industry in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, working closely with local, state and national governments. Our local AMPI Association is leading the country in developing and implementing real estate standards.  To become members of our local AMPI Association Real Estate professionals sign our Bylaws that require our members to follow our Ethical Code of Conduct;  to use our contract forms which have been legally vetted to protect buyers and sellers; to participate in and comply with our MLS Rules and Regulation along with using the shared database. Our Bylaws, Code of Ethics, MLS Systems, Contracts and our other systems are constantly improved on through the expertise and experience of our members.  Find a Committed AMPI Professional Here

Prepare Your Negotiation “Cocktail”

After 25 years as a Realtor, the challenge remains when it comes to negotiations. Now that we are experiencing a livelier market we need to hone our negotiation skills and prepare for the main event!

Negotiations don’t necessarily mean conflict. It’s not a war nor is it a game. In the current market, where we are experiencing multiple offers, we must prepare in order to create a win win result and a satisfied client.

Some suggestions for your negotiation “cocktail”.

1. Carefully review all the documents and highlight the points you want to make clear to your client. They will be anxious and rely on you for clarification. Present the points that you anticipate negotiating for them in a clear and concise manner. Perhaps there are issues they mentioned as non negotiable. Verify that this is still their position. This can help set the stage for a compromise on that issue should they receive another term, they hadn’t anticipated, in exchange.

2. Probe for deal breaker items that truly are not negotiable. This has to be transparent in your conversation and can actually present a clear path in your negotiation. Prepare to explain to your fellow negotiator that this is not up for discussion, so you must work together to find another solution. Agents usually appreciate a collaborative, rather than adversarial, approach.

3. Brush up on non verbal signals as a lot of negotiation is done on the phone. Try not to negotiate in a non verbal manner ( text or email) as that erases a lot of possible clues. Voice inflection, coughing, silence and volume of voice can all be helpful or misleading. Some of the toughest negotiators I’ve had the pleasure of doing business with, had the softest voices. Be open and alert.

4. Identify, and have an understanding of, cultural differences. With our global economy and cultural diversity in real estate transactions, this is a must. It can tip the scales and move the process more smoothly toward resolution. This effort sets a tone of respect and removes the possibility of offending anyone.

5. Set the stage for compromise with your client. If they feel there is no need to compromise on anything, your job of creating a win win scenario will be much more difficult. Ask them to put themselves in the other party’s shoes, which can soften a stance. I ask them to put on their “buyer/seller hat” which can lighten the moment.

According to Gerard I. Nierenberg author of  The Complete Negotiator, the 5 steps in negotiation are: assumptions, facts, issues, positions and decisions. If we have calm and clear communication skills and a patient understanding of the first four, the desired decisions will follow. This is created by confidence and a clear understanding of your client’s position.  Preparation, rather than an impromptu atmosphere, helps create the win win result and present you as a true professional.

 

TRUTH AND BEAUTY IN A REAL ESTATE OFFICE?

Some years ago the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) engaged Tom Morris, Ph.D., to be a speaker at NAR’s national convention. His talks — tucked in among sessions dealing with marketing, sales techniques, and listing presentations — were out of the ordinary, to say the least. But they were relevant then and they are just as relevant today.

TRUTH AND BEAUTY

Morris is, of all things, a philosopher, and a respected one at that. He taught fifteen years at Notre Dame, where he was widely-acknowledged to be the most popular teacher on campus. Now, as head of the Morris Institute for Human Values, he is a much sought-after speaker and consultant for businesses and corporations throughout the country. The title of his talk to the REALTORS®, reflecting his grounding in the classics, was “If Aristotle Sold Real Estate: The Four Foundations of Excellence.”

In a nutshell, Morris’ thesis is this: Human beings seek fulfillment, and an activity or relationship can contribute to one’s fulfillment if and only if it respects and nurtures the four fundamental dimensions of human experience. Those dimensions are the Intellectual, the Aesthetic, the Moral, and the Spiritual. A company or organization that ignores those aspects of its members’ experience does so at its peril. Conversely, companies that attend to those factors see payoffs in loyalty, retention, morale, and productivity.

“Well, OK,” a sincere and attentive broker-owner might say, “but just what does all this stuff mean in the everyday world of my office? Exactly what might I do to apply these lessons from the ancients?” A fair enough question. In the space remaining, we’ll consider some concrete applications with respect to the first two dimensions. In the next column we’ll look at the remaining two.

As Morris would put it, the intellectual dimension of human experience aims at the truth. People have a natural desire to know and to understand. To satisfy this desire, they need the truth. And, while no particular environment can supply them with all the truth there is, every environment can provide an atmosphere of respect for the truth. People — yes, even real estate agents — have a deep-seated need for this, and they will not be able to find real satisfaction in an enterprise where the truth is held in low regard.

Real estate companies, as well as other organizations, can apply this in at least two ways. Internally, they must speak the truth to their employees and agents. At a minimum, this means no dishonesty. Taken more actively, it means openness. It means sharing with employees the truth about company plans and goals, and, especially, problems. It means not making secret deals with some agents, while deceiving the rest.

Truth must also be spoken outwardly. A company that fudges, “puffs”, and otherwise makes less than honest claims about itself to the public does no service to itself or its agents. How many Number Ones can there be? The effect of exaggeration and deception (which doesn’t always require outright falsification) is that, soon, no one listens. Worse, if an employee or agent perceives that his company does not treat the external public with a respect for truth, than he will certainly doubt that such respect would be shown to him.

The second dimension of human experience, the aesthetic, aims at beauty. Few of us would need to be convinced that some of our greatest experiences of satisfaction and deep peace occur in settings of beauty. The workplace that ignores this aspect of human experience commits serious error.

Morris approvingly quotes Victor Hugo, “The beautiful is as useful as the useful. Perhaps more so.” He points out that better work is done in settings that attend to the aesthetic. Beauty brings out the best in people. For the real estate office this may mean something as simple as art work on the walls and fresh flowers in the foyer; but an attention to beauty, color, and harmony in an office shows an attention to, and respect for, the humanness of those who work there.

Moreover, Morris points out that we not only need beauty in our surroundings, but also that we need to experience performance beauty, to know that there is, or can be, beauty in what we do. In real estate? Yes, even in real estate. In one of his books, Morris quotes Confucius as saying, “Everything has its beauty but not everyone sees it.” Real estate companies would do well to remind their agents that there is, or can be, beauty in what they do — that they don’t just do deals and collect commissions.

Some years ago NAR encouraged its members with the slogan, “I sell the American Dream.” That was a good campaign, and one that companies would do well to emulate.

It is common for real estate agents to tell “horror stories” and to jokingly compete with each other as to who has the worst escrow story, etc. Real estate brokerages would do well to turn that around a bit, to provide a venue for agents to compare their good stories and to be reinforced by the beauty that can be found in what they do.

Author, Bob Hunt, director of the California Association of Realtors®.

Why Use AMPI?

AMPI is the national association of real estate professionals that have, since 1956, gathered under laws and codes of ethics and conduct to create a reliable, trustworthy an efficient real estate environment in Mexico.

AMPI consists of separate autonomous sections all throughout the nation, as well as more than 4,000 associates and affiliates.

Each section is independent and has its own board of directors, only surpassed by a national board of directors comprised of twenty associates from all over the republic.

Developed over the years with the input and knowledge of its members, AMPI is much more than just a collection of offices.

AMPI has been a solid and recognized institution in Mexico for the past 27 years. It was originally established in 1956 and was consolidated in 1980.

AMPI is currently represented in all the principle cities and regions of Mexico stretching from Tijuana to Cancun.

The Riviera Nayarita, Vallarta and Compostela chapters of AMPI are dedicated to promote the best practices in real estate by providing its members with education to reinforce the standards of ethics that give our industry the credibility which our clients deserve.

AMPI is committed to giving our membership access to a multiple listing service that forms the platform from which our industry can expand locally and into other markets while giving our members precise and up to date information that is vital to continuous improvement and growth.

What Realtors Need to know About Promoting Themselves

Plan Ahead. It pays to know who your target audience is, and how to reach out to these people. Picking a niche to focus on from the get-go helps you avoid taking on too much and spreading yourself too thin among clients. Try seeking out a certain neighborhood, or focus on a certain type of property, like apartments. Planning ahead also allows you to network and get the most information that you can before things get busy. The sooner you plan, the more prepared and successful you will be.realtors promoting themselves

Become the Expert. You can’t become a well-known real estate expert unless you really ARE one. Pick something you know really well and run with it. Learn everything you can and actually become the expert at what you do. Whether it’s staging or finding the perfect neighborhood, concentrate on what you know best and keep learning everything you can.

Networking. This means getting out of your comfort zone and approaching people you may not have talked to before. This doesn’t just mean social media networking either, this means have conversations with people, which are much more meaningful. It’s all about whom you know, and whom those people know. You may actually be surprised at how far it will take you.

Your Website. You want a website that represents who you are and what you do in the simplest way. Nobody wants to read through paragraphs of information and promises that you are the best at what you do. Anyone can say that. Use your website to show that you ARE the best, and use short, catchy phrases that will stick with potential clients rather than lengthy pages of content.

Get Blogging. Content marketing is useful because it connects you with your target audience. Writing blogs about certain topics in real estate will help establish you as a real estate expert. Of course, you’ll want to form the content around who your target audience is so that you reach the right people. For example, if you’re focus is on luxury real estate, you want to create blogs about luxury living and high priced homes or lavish design ideas.

Get Some Help. Hiring a PR team to promote you as a real estate professional will not only take a load off of your to do list, but will also result in more effective promotion. With a team to take care of all of your needs, from social media to media opportunities, you will have more time to focus on being the best real estate agent you can be. Rather than splitting your time between promoting yourself and selling homes, you can focus on your current clients and let your PR team do the rest!

 

Author: Expose Yourself Public Relations

Why Use AMPI?

AMPI is the national association of real estate professionals that have, since 1956, gathered under laws and codes of ethics and conduct to create a reliable, trustworthy an efficient real estate environment in Mexico.

AMPI consists of separate autonomous sections all throughout the nation, as well as more than 4,000 associates and affiliates. Each section is independent and has its own board of directors, only surpassed by a national board of directors comprised of twenty associates from all over the republic.

Developed over the years with the input and knowledge of its members, AMPI is much more than just a collection of offices. AMPI has been a solid and recognized institution in Mexico for the past 27 years. It was originally established in 1956 and was consolidated in 1980. AMPI is currently represented in all the principle cities and regions of Mexico stretching from Tijuana to Cancun.

The Riviera Nayarita, Vallarta and Compostela chapters of AMPI are dedicated to promote the best practices in real estate by providing its members with education to reinforce the standards of ethics that give our industry the credibility which our clients deserve.

AMPI is committed to giving our membership access to a multiple listing service that forms the platform from which our industry can expand locally and into other markets while giving our members precise and up to date information that is vital to continuous improvement and growth.

Top Web Design Trends In 2014

This week, we have taken it upon ourselves to outline and explain the most important trends in web design for 2014. The consensus among website design pros, regarding industry trends for 2014, is fairly cut and dry and most agree the significant styles for the year will likely fall under the headings of responsive design, simple design and storytelling design.

Web Design Trends

1)      Responsive Design: the most critical for small business. Why? Because it is quickly becoming the standard, and if you don’t comply, it will negatively affect your Google ranking. Responsive design means a set website is a thing of the past. Instead, we must not feel like all elements that fit on a desktop must be present on the screen of a smartphone. That’s where the design comes in, finding a pro who knows what will work best on a smartphone, tablet, or desktop-size screen, and including the elements that make for the most seamless and enjoyable format.

2)      Simple Design: Simplicity refers to the integration of best practices so site visitors get what they need seamlessly and without complication. What simplicity does not imply is generic. Yes, to powerful images. Yes, to meaningful content. Yes, to sleek and purposeful navigation. So how do you decide what is and what is not important? The right designer, of course. See, instead of random guessing, a qualified designer or team will do split testing to gauge response – taking out much of the guesswork. Plus, an experienced design team will have worked with similar companies/formats and should have a pretty good idea what is working, and what is working well. They will also be able to use pragmatism and remove your own personal bias and emotion.

3)      Storytelling Design: this methodology suggests that users are told a story through concise, compelling copy coupled with strong imagery as they scroll down the page. Another way to say it? MAKE. IT. FUN. Let them discover who you/your company are by letting it unfold before their eyes, so to speak. Let them start where you did and fast-track them to how you arrived at a solution. Gone are the days of “I am so great” over and over again – in every nook and cranny of your site. (At least we hope it will be after reading this.) Imagine scrolling down to the bottom of a website page, where the process unfolds like a fairy tale, or an evolution of sorts. Set a goal/challenge your designer, with something like this: “I want new visitors to be able to move down from the top of the page to the bottom in 30 seconds and have a crystal clear idea of who we are and what we do. And for repeat visitors, I want them to easily identify where to go to make a purchase, or visit our blog, virtually without having to look.” Sure, an effective “storytelling” website is easier said than done. But it’s a worthwhile challenge – and if it’s done well, you’re pretty much assured of a website that will be the belle of the ball.

Source: Forbes Magazine

Why Use AMPI?

AMPI is the national association of real estate professionals that have, since 1956, gathered under laws and codes of ethics and conduct to create a reliable, trustworthy an efficient real estate environment in Mexico.

AMPI consists of separate autonomous sections all throughout the nation, as well as more than 4,000 associates and affiliates. Each section is independent and has its own board of directors, only surpassed by a national board of directors comprised of twenty associates from all over the republic.

Developed over the years with the input and knowledge of its members, AMPI is much more than just a collection of offices. AMPI has been a solid and recognized institution in Mexico for the past 27 years. It was originally established in 1956 and was consolidated in 1980. AMPI is currently represented in all the principle cities and regions of Mexico stretching from Tijuana to Cancun.

The Riviera Nayarita, Vallarta and Compostela chapters of AMPI are dedicated to promote the best practices in real estate by providing its members with education to reinforce the standards of ethics that give our industry the credibility which our clients deserve.

AMPI is committed to giving our membership access to a multiple listing service that forms the platform from which our industry can expand locally and into other markets while giving our members precise and up to date information that is vital to continuous improvement and growth.

Vallarta: Drones – Safety and Privacy are Goals That Real Estate Strives to Meet

Some great advice from Robert Freeman in www.speakingofrealestate.blogs.realtor.org/


“Real estate professionals understand, perhaps more than most, the importance to a homeowner of having privacy in his or her home and backyard, or to be able to guard against trespassers on private property.”—NAR President Chris Polychron in Sept. 10, 2015, testimony to the House Judiciary Commiteee subcommittee on the courts and intellectual property

NAR President Chris Polychron testified before Congress about the real estate industry’s readiness to use unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, in a safe and responsible way once the federal government clears the way with final rules.

Drone  Test

To get ready, NAR has joined the Federal Aviation Administration’s Know Before You Fly campaign, provided its analyses of safety and privacy issues to the FAA as it writes its rules, and continues to educate its members about the importance of safe drone operations.

NAR’s efforts in this regard put it out front of what will surely be an increasingly important matter as drones become a familiar part of our airspace.

Among the real estate-related questions that are likely to be asked by lawmakers and others as the technology moves forward are these:

  • If you’re working with a drone operator and have the permission of the owner to take aerial photos and video of the owner’s property, what must the drone operator do to ensure the data that’s collected is kept secure?
  • What if a neighbor or someone else is unintentionally photographed or videotaped by the drone?
  • What if the drone causes a safety issue?

For real estate, one of the main uses of drone technology will be aerial photos and videos. But as Polychron made clear in his remarks, the range of possible uses goes far beyond that. The devices can become a safe and cost-effective way to assess property condition and gauge property damage after a storm, among other things.

In short, drones hold a lot of promise for the industry, and in his testimony, Polychron stressed that REALTORS® will make every effort to tap this useful technology while keeping the focus on its safe and responsible use.



Mexico is moving in the right direction, working to raise the real estate standards to protect buyer and seller interests. AMPI (our National Real Estate Association) plays a key role in the real estate industry in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, working closely with local, state and national governments. Our local AMPI Association is leading the country in developing and implementing real estate standards.  To become members of our local AMPI Association Real Estate professionals sign our Bylaws that require our members to follow our Ethical Code of Conduct;  to use our contract forms which have been legally vetted to protect buyers and sellers; to participate in and comply with our MLS Rules and Regulation along with using the shared database. Our Bylaws, Code of Ethics, MLS Systems, Contracts and our other systems are constantly improved on through the expertise and experience of our members.  Find a Committed AMPI Professional Here