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How many times have you had one of your friends list or buy with another agent simply because they didn't think of you at the critical moment of making that decision?

Seeing another agent's sign in your past client's or friend's front yard can be bone-crushing, but the truth is, most agents don't deploy a consistent system of keeping themselves and their services top of mind among friends and neighbors. Most sales professionals will admit that they don't like to prospect, yet this system is the one habit that, when done consistently, yields measurable, impressive results.

This best-kept secret is outlined in the eBook "The Ultimate Marketing Handbook for Real Estate Agents That Want to Close 86 Deals or More a Year," which explains the "86-50-1" formula. The eBook*, authored by mega top producer Mike Parker and noted success coach Verl Workman, puts a pencil to a simple strategy that can generate more than one lead from each contact in your elite group of Top 50. This proven strategy works to save money, leverages your brand and reputation, and packs a fun factor.

This program generates 86 referrals a year working with only 50 people and focusing on one hour a day.

Here's how the system works:

1. Go through your database and identify the top 50 people you believe would give you a referral this year. Once your list is complete, schedule a personal touch once every month for the next 12 months. This isn't about just phoning your top 50 group every month and asking for a referral, but rather, it's a way to provide a personal "touch" to each contact monthly.

On June 6, 2017, the New Jersey Appellate Division was asked to determine whether a lender's assignee that takes possession of a condominium unit when the owner/mortgagor has defaulted on the loan, and thereafter winterizes the unit and changes the locks, is considered a “mortgagee in possession” of that unit, and therefore responsible for the payment of condominium fees and assessments.

The court concluded that those discrete actions are not sufficient to render the lender's assignee a mortgagee in possession of the unit and offered guidance as to what specifically constitutes a "mortgage in possession."

You can read the decision here.

According to data from the National Association of REALTORS®, the share of single buyers was on the decline from 2011 to 2015, as there was more competition in the market from investment and vacation homebuyers. The share of single buyers rebounded in 2016, however, possibly signaling new developments for the future—but first, let us look back at historical trends.

NAR tracks market changes in two of its flagship surveys, the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers and the Investment and Vacation Home Buyers Survey. In 2016, the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers celebrated its 35th anniversary, collecting data since 1981 and providing a historical perspective on how the share of buyer types have fluctuated over three-and-a-half decades. Historically, married couples have always captured the highest share of home sales—at their peak in 1985, married couples purchased 81 percent of all homes that year, followed by single females at 10 percent, single males at 6 percent, and unmarried couples at 3 percent.

When it comes to interacting with businesses, millennials are all about the online experience—except, a new survey shows, when in need of real estate services.

Seventy-five percent of millennials recently surveyed by CentSai, a financial wellness website, would prefer to enlist the help of a local real estate agent than an online agent. Seventy-one percent, in addition, would prefer to work with a local mortgage lender.

Why favor face-to-face collaboration? "Amount of hassle," handholding," "local knowledge," "longstanding relationships" and "personal touch" were all given as reasons behind the desire to hire local.

"We were surprised to learn that online providers are not yet as big a disruptor in this sector as we first thought, despite purported cost savings," says Doria Lavagnino, co-founder and president of CentSai. "We found that millennials place a high value on the personal touch and knowledge of a local agent. Buying a home for the first time is daunting, and working with a local agent—particularly an agent referred by a parent or friend—could provide peace of mind."

If you're shopping for a home in New Jersey, you may be considering townhouses and condominiums. But what are the differences between the two?

A townhome is a single family home that shares one or more walls with other independently owned units. With a townhome a buyer will own their home and the land on which the house sits. With a condominium, a buyer will own the interior of their unit but the unit owners jointly own the land and this common interest cannot be separated from the others.

A townhouse is attached to one or more houses and while there are no neighbors above or below the home like in a condo or apartment, because the homes are attached, they still offer a greater sense of security.

Business is built on relationships. For many entrepreneurs whose small businesses are thriving, successful networking is one of the most common threads.

Making connections and building relationships are among the most beneficial aspects of networking with other small businesses, according to more than half of the respondents in a survey by The UPS Store. This is especially true among younger business owners, who are more likely than their older counterparts to take advantage of networking opportunities with fellow small business owners.

Not only do they crave these connections, 61 percent of small business owners say they want to establish in-person relationships. Attending networking and meetup events is a great way for entrepreneurs to form new relationships, share experiences and celebrate their hard work. In honor of National Small Business Week, The UPS Store will offer several networking events to facilitate small business connections. The following tips can help small business owners make the most of networking events.

So your friend, coworker or daughter just purchased their first home and you want to honor the occasion with a housewarming gift—but the options seem limited. If you don't want to be that person who gives yet another blender or bottle of wine, you should give them something a bit more original and, preferably, a lot more functional.

Smart home gadgets fit the bill perfectly. The 12 home automation products below are organized into four demographics, but most of these gifts would surely delight any new homeowner.

The Working Professional or Parent

Belkin WeMo Switch Smart Plug
You won't spend a lot of money on the Belkin WeMo Switch Smart Plug, but it will deliver a powerful punch. When homeowners plug it into an outlet and connect a coffee pot or other appliance, they can turn the appliance on or off from anywhere at any time. They can also connect the lights to the plug to easily set schedules and synchronizations.

Beddi Smart Alarm Clock
The Beddi Smart Alarm Clock claims almost unbelievable functionality. Its compact design features two Bluetooth speakers with a Spotify Premium integration, a white noise generator to lull a homeowner to sleep, and two charging ports. It also boasts three customizable buttons that homeowners can use to control other devices, such as an overhead light, fan or the aforementioned coffee pot.

Every industry has increased their mobile efforts, with 71 percent of marketers declaring mobile marketing to be essential to their business. Real estate companies can make great use of mobile marketing to bring in new leads and to maintain customer loyalty.

Tools such as text messaging, mobile apps, social media, video, and online reviews are all accessed on buyers' mobile phones and can be used for real estate marketing strategies. Here's how to optimize your mobile presence:

Mobile Apps
Businesses that have mobile apps praise them for the level of customer engagement they provide. Customers who download a business' app tend to be more loyal to that business. They also spend more time on apps than they do on webpages—18 times more time.

For real estate customers, browsing through an app is easier than clicking through several different webpages. They can message, make appointments and get information all in one spot. Some great perks you can provide your clients on your app would be a collection of all the necessary documents they'll need to complete the purchase of their home and the ability to sign documents electronically through the app. Throw in a mortgage calculator and you're golden.

As of May 1, 2017, a paper cover sheet is required with all paper land documents submitted for recording at any of the 21 NJ County Clerk's Offices via U.S. Mail, express mail, courier service, or in-person over the counter delivery.

The cover sheet will be counted as an extra page in calculating recording fees so an additional $10.00 must be included.

Any land document submitted for recording without a cover sheet must include an additional $20.00 or the document will be rejected and returned. This requirement does not apply to eRecorded documents as the cover sheet is already integrated into eDocuments submitted. The new cover sheet requirement is mandated by N.J.S.A. 46:26A-5.

If recording a deed, the cover sheet must include:

The lot and block or other real property tax designation of the real property conveyed or a statement that the information is not available;

The consideration for the conveyance;

The mailing address of the grantee.

For an assignment, release, satisfaction of a mortgage or an agreement respecting a mortgage, the book and page number or document identifying number of the mortgage to which it relates must be stated on the cover sheet.

There are several factors that weigh on home value, including condition, location, and—in areas where they are most pronounced—environmental hazards such as poor air quality.

According to the ATTOM Data Solutions recent Environmental Hazards Housing Risk Index, 17.3 million single-family homes and condominiums have a high risk of an environmental hazard, with Denver, Colo., San Bernardino, Calif., and Curtis Bay, Md., facing the highest risk. Environmental hazards include brownfields, or property contaminated (or potentially contaminated) by a hazardous substance, polluters, poor air quality and superfunds.

"Home values are higher and long-term home price appreciation is stronger in zip codes without a high risk for any of the four environmental hazards analyzed," says Daren Blomquist, senior vice president at ATTOM Data Solutions. "Corresponding to that is a higher share of homes still seriously underwater in the zip codes with a high risk of at least one environmental hazard, indicating those areas have not regained as much of the home value lost during the downturn.