The McLaughlin Group Team

The McLaughlin Group Team

Monday, February 28, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN - day 14 The Shoemaker Brothers

Have you listened to The Shoemaker Brothers, A MUST DO this week. 4brothers, home schooled academically and musically, write their own music and each can play at least 4 instruments including the cello, violin, guitar, drums and keyboard AND they are all under 30 years old and they all sing. What inspiration! Real estate like music is a highly competitive and often unpreditable career, and that is why I admire these brothers so much. This family's talent and perseverence to make it in an equally challenging career has been inspiring to watch. By the way, take a listen and let them know and us know, what you think.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN -day 13 Perspective

My advice, walk in the shoes of the other party and try to see it from their perspective. So hard to do for so many of us during a real estate transaction. All of us by nature want to win, so it becomes extremely difficult to see the other party's point. Now lets zoom out like google earth and take a view from above. As we look from above, we see people fighting for survival, worried that their own government might bomb their city or strike down a family member. Rather shocking looking down and the perspective it affords us. Zoom back in and realize how great it is that we have the opportunity to choose where we live, associate with anyone, assemble and even negotiate over price per square foot. Is it not all about perspective?

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN -day 12 Celebrity

What I thought began as a prank call ended up being one of my most memorable moments. It was no prank at all, but a mega mega star requesting a showing. Sitting on a deck overlooking Malibou Lake with me, asking what I would do if I were him. I knew his question was real estate related but I could not help but ponder how his life must differ slightly from my own. Private jets, exotic locations on luxury yachts, and a host of other monster benefits. Trying to act cool and hip, which I know I failed at miserably, I babbled some answer out that to this day is still unrecognizable to me and the star. Oh well, life rolls on and I will continue transporting myself, not in my private jet, but in my big rimmed Ford Flex.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Friday, February 25, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN -day 11 Rainy Days

What started out to be a frantic day has turned out to be a rather dull and gloomy day. Multiple cancellations of showings and inspections because of rain, has provided an opportunity to begin the renewal of my license. It's a dreaded time consuming process online that each realtor, every 3-4 years must endure. As with any business in this great state of ours, the state likes their fees. I will endure by going to a happy place. Any suggestions?

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN - day 10 Daughters

Last night, at the Canyon Club, enjoying Kelsey and Kinsey at their high school soccer banquet. The interaction with friends, the speeches by the coaches, the awards, but most importantly for me, the memories of little ones on the field with ribbons in their hair. No ribbons in their hair now, just fierce competitors, scholar athletes and young women on top of this world, poised to reach for their mountain top. How quickly time has flown by and I feel lucky that with Miley, I get to go through it all again. Why do I love being a realtor? Well one really big big reason, it has allowed me the freedom to not miss out. I am a lucky man.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN - day 9 Our Serengeti

Well, here I sit, and it's Laurie this time, at my desk watching in wonder at what might look like chaos but is in reality, a Serengeti of animals playing out their roles, resulting in a day of exceptional results. Hard to believe, but true. Have any of you taken the quiz from What Animal Am I,, taken from the book, Surviving Your Serengeti? It's a 5 minute quiz that will tell you a lot about yourself. Our group consists of Dave, the communicating Elephant, an animal that due to its sheer strength and size can master the use of nonverbal communication. Shawn, the efficient Cheetah, believes in finishing her work in the shortest period of time with a minimum amount of wasted energy and resources. Kelly, the graceful Giraffe, is not only graceful in appearance but graceful in her approach to others. Me, Laurie, the strategic Lion, am responsible for our overall marketing approach, in the same way a pride of lions plan their hunt. Tina, the enduring Wildebeest, pursues her clients like the migrating Wildebeest as it travels across 1500 miles through peril, to reach the fertile fields. Dylan, the enterprising Crocodile, is quick to recognize opportunity and strike swiftly. I now understand why our Serengeti works.

Take the quiz and get back with us...unless you are a WART HOG!

This is Laurie, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN - day 8 Absence

Tough on family and tough on business when you are away for 3 days. No hugs for the kids and wife, the dogs are rambunctious and the cat who rarely acknowledges me will surely ignore me for a month, as he thinks, I will be hurt by his behavior. Then there is the biz side of things and even with the group covering, I always wonder what else I might be missing. I could not help but thinking that these other 8000 agents are feeling pretty much the same way I was. Then I heard their voices harmonize during a karaoke version of Love Shack and I realized that 3 days at a company convention is just about enough.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Monday, February 21, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN - day 7 Anaheim

Company wide convention with approximately 10,000 agents and lots of information about trends, interest rates, pending foreclosures, inflation etc. After reviewing so much data the first day, I thought about how to boil things down. For sellers: Homes are selling regardless of the amount of inventory. It may take longer but they are selling. Luxury inventory has gone from a 48 month inventory to 14 months. To sell in today's market buyers have to feel that a seller's home, compared to other properties has value and is fairly priced. For buyers: Now is a fairly good time to buy and in fact, may be one of the best times because we are still at historically low interest rates, but that will not last much longer. Once rates start to creep up, the cost of that home will go up even though the purchase price may not reflect that. The money will just cost you more!

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN - day 6 Pit Bulls & Baby Steps

Crossing the stream in the listing agent's jeep enjoying the broker's caravan along Lobo Canyon, neither myself nor the two lady agents had any idea what peril loomed in front of us. A burned out house on five plus acres with incredible views and a small trailer nestled under the shade trees. As we exited the car, two rather menacing looking Pits, barking, growling & foaming at the mouth, began crashing against the glass trailer door. With each successive blow to the door, the latch is slowly giving way. Now the distance between the jeep, a large fence and trailer are measured by my perceptive and now fearful eye. And it happens, the door gives way and shooting out of the trailer like bullets exiting their gun's chamber, 200 pounds of muscle and teeth have locked on. Instinct and heart rate explode, I am at the top of the fence in seconds, relieved that I still have some life in my legs but now horrified about who I have left behind to suffer a most unfortunate mauling. As I turn to look, the dogs were on them, sniffing, wagging and licking away, just happy to have some friends on their mountain. I am humiliated but quickly shout out from my position on top of the fence, "Hey, the second story views from a new house would be spectacular." Not one of my proudest moments but since that day I have stepped in front of two dogs to take the bite instead of my clients, a Chihuahua and a Pekingese...Baby steps!

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

BLINDS WIDE OPEN -day 5 The Wash Cloth and Pretty Lady

Carmen, a very pretty young lady, and I enter a home after a kind gentleman removes himself and his dogs from the house. As we enter the great room, suddenly a door opens upstairs and a rather portly fellow, unaware of our presence, exits the upper level bathroom wrapped in what some would call a towel, but for a man of his size, I would call it a wash cloth. I really don't know what Carmen saw from the lower level through the banister but here's a piece of advice if your home is for sale. When you exit your bathroom, grab the beach towel instead of the wash cloth. One more thought; he might have seen Carmen when we got out of the car, and maybe he was just showing off. If that is the case Sir, I admire your confidence.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Friday, February 18, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN -day 4 A Marathon

I heard marriage once described as a marathon. Think about that, being out of breath, aching muscles, blistered feet and just makes most of us want to run out and get married or if already married, asking, what mile am I at right now? The start of the marathon is exciting with the massive moving crowd and fanfare but check in around mile 14, 15, or 16 and see what's up. Skip to the finish line, more crowds, the exhilaration of completion, champagne and finally, a well deserved rest. So it goes with buying or selling a house, first comes the excitement of coming to terms, then comes the inspections, disclosures, paperwork, appraisals and the worry, stress and fatigue that inevitably hop on your shoulders for the ride. Exhausting! 45 days or so later, you're sipping a martini or lemonade by the pool, the dog is tearing up your yard and your feet are up and you are at rest. The loose toilet, the rat droppings in the attic and the bleeping bleeping smoke detector of the past month are forgotten and you are home. In the middle of your race, day, transaction, or life, you may want to take just a brief moment to ponder your coming rest.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN- day 3 Rattlesnake

Berated and beaten down by the more experienced realtor, I struggled to gain the upper hand in one of my first transactions, but she was feisty and knew she had me! Do this, do that, I was helpless to combat her experience, knowledge and oh yes, her attitude. Then, as if the Almighty had heard my pleas, the serpent sprang forth at the home inspection and sent her flying for shelter.(I was surprised she moved as swiftly as she did). From that point on, we were equals. The juvenile Rattler was released into the wild after I gave him a big squeeze thanking him for leveling the playing field. I walked a little taller that day, and I still laugh 12 years later about the Rattlesnake that rescued me!

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN- day 2 The Group

Dylan, Kelly, Laurie, Tina, Shawn & Janet: I am a lucky guy to work with such great people. Everyday I lean on them for support, energy, and fun and everyday I am rewarded with all that and more. We represent 14 different buyers and sellers who are in escrow, in addition to the sellers homes we are currently marketing. It would simply be impossible to do this without my groups constant support and they are simply the best! You surround yourself with really solid people and awesome things happen. I hope all of you have people in your life that make a difference and enable you to climb your mountains. The six people above are my difference makers. Thank You.

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

BLINDS WIDE OPEN- day 1 Introduction

Thanks everyone for checking in on the launch of our blog, "Blinds Wide Open". Every day The McLaughlin Group will give you an inside look at the happenings behind the scenes of this exhilarating industry. We are excited about this and hope you will check in on a daily basis, be entertained, offer ideas, stories and patronize the great local restaurants and wineries that are teaming up with us (print out this page with the coupon on the right column of the blog; it will change every week).

We are so privileged to do what we do. Our lives are enriched because of each event, story and friendship that this fantastic business provides us on a daily basis.

So you want a story? We had a recent sale with some very expensive Koi Fish included. The night before escrow closes, the seller's agent turns on the waterfall and it clogs with pine needles. The pump then switches to pool water to prevent it from burning up, with just one problem...the pool is saltwater and Koi are freshwater fish...yep, many perish. Sad, some were put into the pond over 20 years ago and who knows what they are worth. The Oneil family was incredibly gracious and simply requested that the agent take them out for a round of golf. Wow! And he asked that I get to go along too. I am moved by their grace and honored to be their agent.

Thanks to the Old Place and Sip Winery for helping us launch "Blinds Wide Open."

This is Dave, from The McLaughlin Group, keeping it real in real estate!