Blog Archives

FLASHBACK: DIY Web publishing for real estate 1999 vs 3Q2012

​DIY home buyers and FSBOs:  Think about real estate websites you’ve used, from real estate portals, like Zillow, Trulia, and, to real estate brands, like Coldwell Banker and Redfin.   What features to you like best? What frustrates you

Posted in Best of Breed, Client Feedback, Consumer protection, DIY Homebuyers, Do-it-yourself, Fee-for-service, FSBO: Best Practices, Idea Bar, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Writing tools

Experimenting with Real-Time Twitter feed on real estate ad

The image above is a static screen grab, but you’ll find The Real Estate Cafe’s new, experimental LIVE Twitter feed on our ad.  If you’d like to know more about how Twitter and other “real-time” tools are “revolutionizing the

Posted in Creative class, DIY Homebuyers, Extreme Househunting, Idea Bar, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Real Estate Blogs: Best Practices, Real-time real etate, Savings & Rebates, Tech Trends, Twitter

RECafe’s new ad to feature “Best of Breed” money-saving demos

===== The Real Estate Cafe is working on new artwork to replace our existing banner ad on’s open house search page.  Do-it-yourself homebuyers and sellers, what kind of educational seminars would you like us to host this month, and

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Posted in Best of Breed, Change Agents, Extreme Househunting, FSBO: Best Practices, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Social Networking, Unconference

Greater Fool’s housing market or foolish NOT to buy now?

For years, The Real Estate Cafe has paid for a banner ad on’s open house search page.   Next week, we meet with their creative team to brainstorm about new ideas for their upcoming annual Spring home buying special.  Guess

Posted in Defensive Homebuying, Dual Agency Detective, Humor, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, RECALL: Real Estate Consumer Alliance

SNEAK PREVIEW: Real Estate Cafe’s experimental new FSBO Wiki!

Ssshhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh… This is a really B-I-G secret.  Click on the thumbnail image above to see some of the 150 plus images included in The Real Estate Cafe’s new experimental FSBO Wiki.  If you’d like a closer look, call 617-661-4046 or

Posted in "We" companies, Best of Breed, Do-it-yourself, Fee-for-service, FSBO: Best Practices, FSBO: For Sale By Owner, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Real Estate Blogs: Best Practices, Savings & Rebates, Writing tools

If airlines have fare sales, should real estate agents? Part 3

For the past five years, Real Estate Cafe’s clients have been asking, “When will housing prices bottom out?” Some began their house hunts two years before the market peaked, and have been watching housing prices fall for three straight years.  While

Posted in Commission Reform, Do-it-yourself, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Savings & Rebates

Should we use TwitPay to turbocharge our Tipping Policy?

The Real Estate Cafe’s original tipping policy gave commission rebate credits to active clients who contributed listings to our RealEstateBubbleMap: Boston. TwitPay could give us the opportunity to create a virtual Tip Box on every street corner! Do-it-yourself home buyers

Posted in "We" companies, Bubble map, Client Feedback, Do-it-yourself, Fee-for-service, Idea Bar, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Moblogging in Real Estate, Real Estate Bubble, Savings & Rebates, Social Networking

Buyer Demo: How to search MLS for price reductions

Schedule a private webinar or join a small group presentation at a location of your convenience.

Posted in Best of Breed, Do-it-yourself, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Real Estate Bubble, Savings & Rebates

Limited time: “Bailout Bonus” for 4th quarter bargain hunters

As the housing market enters the final quarter of 2008, The Real Estate Cafe is contacting new and long-time clients to get an update on their home buying plans.  Can you believe that one member of our 1,000 Click Club has viewed 6,247 MLS pages via The Real Estate Cafe’s MLS
access system
during the past 2.3 years?  More than half of
those page views (3,847 pages) have been since the start of 2008 and
about a third (1,270) were during the 3rd quarter.  If you’re bargain hunting during the final quarter of 2008 and early 2009, can The Real Estate Cafe help you save money by serving you "a la carte"?


encourage you to take advantage of falling prices during the current
financial crisis, we’re willing to reduce our hourly consulting to just $50
for any work requested before close of business TODAY (offer extended through Tuesday, October 7, 2008 if payment made online by 5pm).
That’s a savings of 50-67% off our current billing rate of $100-$150
per hour
. So, if there is any work we can do to help you — for example, download & forward
MLS listing data so you can analyze price trends — please let us know ASAP.
At a minimum, would you like us to add expired listings to your daily email of MLS listings?
An amazing, 1,136 single family listings expired across MA last week
(9/27-10/3/08) alone; and surprisingly, 498 listings were priced UNDER $319K!

Posted in Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Savings & Rebates, Timing the market

If airlines have fare sales, should real estate agents? Part 2

Poking fun at the current cover story in Barron’s Magazine, "Bottom’s Up: This Real-Estate Rout May Be Short-Lived," Bill Apgar of the Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing predicted, "There will be 10 articles a month [like that] until we hit the bottom, and the last one will be right."

When will it be the right time to buy?  That’s what all The Real Estate Cafe’s clients are asking.  Some of their house hunts began two years before the market peaked, and are now into the third year of falling prices.  Nearly 50 of our active buyers have looked at more than 1,000 MLS page views. Twenty-one have looked at more than 1,000 MLS pages in the past year alone, but only four of them have paid any fees to The Real Estate Cafe.

Unlike listing agencies who represent sellers and charge 5% to 6% commissions, or start-ups that are venture funded, The Real Estate Cafe pays it’s overhead almost entirely from hourly consulting fees paid by clients.  With so many buyer waiting out the housing bubble, those fees have slowed to a trickle.  Now, after 13 years, we need your financial support.

We constantly look for ways to help you save money, by learning more about the housing bubble and the latest technologies.  Today, for example, we attended a seminar on State of the Nation’s Housing and a Foreclosure Prevention Workshop. This weekend, we’ll participate in PodCampBoston (for the third time.)  Next week, we’d like to participate in two real estate technology conferences in San Francisco:  REBarCamp and Real Estate Connect.

To do so, we need to raise $2,000 to $3,000 quickly.  You can help us, help you save money by selecting one of the following special offers:

Money-saving offer #1:  Fare sale
Repeat the Fare Sale we used successfully in 2007 to get two to three clients to prepay $500 to $1,000 in exchange for 1 to 3 hours additional work for FREE.  Email for details.

Money-saving offer #2:  Experiment with monthly fees
Introduce an optional monthly subscription fee. If you agree to pay $250 per month, we’ll slash our our consulting fees, normally $100 to $150 per hour, to $50 per hour for five hours—that’s a savings of 50% to nearly 70%! Like frequent flier miles, hours you prepay accumulate and you can use them any time you like.  Email for details.

Money-saving offer #3. Attend educational seminars
Host a technology debriefing after our trip to San Francisco to share best money-saving tools and tips from the two real estate technology conferences. We would like to host two events, one for buyers and the other for FSBOs ("for sale by owner") within 10 days of the conferences at TogetherInMotion, One Broadway, Arlington, MA.  $49 per household, per event.  Email for details.

Finally, your best savings opportunity may already be part of our normal menu of fees & rebates.  For example, one of our $3,000 flat fee options enables you to buy down our hourly consulting fee from $150 per hour (without retainer) to $75 for 40 hours – that’s a 50% savings before payment of any performance bonus.  (Contact us for more details on this option and others.)

We encourage buyers to wait for the housing prices to correct, but don’t wait to take advantage of these savings opportunities. Once we raise $2,000 to $3,000, they’ll be gone.

Posted in "We" companies, Bubble Hour, Client Feedback, Fee-for-service, FSBO: Best Practices, Housing forecasts, Inside The Real Estate Cafe, Price trends, Real Estate Bubble, Savings & Rebates, Tech Trends, Timing the market
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