What's New at Funky Homes of Austin*
A few months back, some big changes started happening in my business. It all started with a car ride with one of our interns at Spyglass. She was on a rather long drive with me to a home where we were going to shoot a video together, and she asked me a question that really took me off guard.
It was, basically, "Why aren't you more successful already?"
It's a sticky question to pose to someone, but I could understand it. I've posed the same question to a mentor in my life. He's done incredible things, but I always felt like he was capable of more than coaching people like me. I remember asking him "How come I still get to coach with you? Why aren't you on Oprah or something?" So I kind of understood her question.
My initial reaction, for about five seconds, was to get defensive. The response in my head went something like this: "What the heck are you talking about? I am successful! You're still in college. What do you know?"
But once I got my ego to sit down and shut up, I was open to the conversation. So we talked about it. She wanted to know what my vision was for my life and business. What I wanted to do but was afraid to do. What was holding me back? And why I didn't just go do it already.
I never imagined that by the tender age of 30 I would have lost my youthful optimism and "why not?" attitude, but apparently complacency had started to creep in. And it took a college student, not yet worn down by adulthood, to inspire me to change.
In a pretty short time, my team went from 2 people (me and Emma) to four. I hired a business coach, Kelly Garcia Kilmer, through Hero Nation. I agreed to run a 6-week coaching program for new agents at Spyglass. I accepted a speaking engagement at a women's event called The Inspiration Lab in November. And I started writing a book.
It's been an interesting few months. There have been moments where I feel like I'm on top of the world, and others where I'm terrified this is all a huge mistake and that I'm not actually good enough to make it all work. But coaching with Kelly has been crucial. She insists that instead of indulging in my dramatic predictions of failure, I pick one or two important things to do this week, and go do them. She suggests "Just try it for six months. If you decide after that it was all a big mistake, what will you really have lost?"
I can't overstate the importance of having someone to talk to who has been where you want to go and who can hold your hand, and kick your butt, along the way.
I don't know just where all this will land, but I know this. I love what I do, and I can't wait to see what the future brings.
(*Funky Homes of Austin is my working title for our team. Basically, because I already claimed that on Instagram. And I really don't want to be "The Affinito Team." I also don't want to spend any mental energy thinking of a new team name. So until further notice, we're "Funky Homes of Austin"! )
Hero Nation Mastermind
At the end of September, I spent a few days at a mastermind outside Austin with several people from my business coaching group. We spent 2 days together talking about our businesses and our lives, sharing insights, and getting clear on what we want. There are few things as powerful, I believe, as being surrounded by great people who have enough in common with you to connect, and are different enough to challenge you and cause you to think about familiar things from unfamiliar perspectives. I realized during that week that I absolutely love things like this, and should do more of them in my life. I don't know yet just what that looks like, but it's on my list to figure out.
The market in Austin is still a strong seller's market, with prices up this August over last August. We're still seeing some multiple offers and pretty quick sales. But the pattern we see is that it's not quite as competitive for buyers in the fall as it was in the late spring and early summer. So if you're a buyer wondering when to buy, these months tend to be a great time. Usually, inventory is still pretty high, meaning there are lots of homes to choose from. Those homes that didn't sell in the summer are probably still on the market, hoping for a buyer before the holidays. Usually, if the home is occupied, sellers will start to pull their home off the market as we approach Thanksgiving, to avoid the inconvenience of showing their home during the holidays. So August-mid November tends to be a sweet spot for buyers with decent selection and a bit less competition. If you want to discuss, email me at email@example.com.
Book of the Month
This book was recommended to me by my friend, client and fellow business owner Athan, who owns my Crossfit gym. The book is about how to build your business to run itself. Most small business owners and particularly real estate agents start out their businesses doing everything themselves. That's natural. But oftentimes we get stuck and forget to redesign our business to run efficiently as it grows.
Systems, growth, and efficiency are ideas I've been obsessed with ever since I started my business as a real estate agent. I'm only a few chapters in, but so far this is a great, practical read for small business owners and entrepreneurs, even those with a side hustle, about how to run a more profitable and less time-intensive business.
You can check it out here: https://amzn.to/2LRW7MW.
Contracts and Closings
September was a bit slower than the summer months. After 10 closings between July and August, that was okay with us!
In September, our client Ali went under contract on a brand new detached condo in East Austin. Ali was referred to us by our clients and friends Dan and Lauren, who have sent us so many awesome clients I think I've lost count. We're headed to closing in mid-October.
We also had some clients go under contract on a property on S 5th Street in 78704, just a block from Thai Fresh. It is a two-unit property in need of some love, and they're excited to put some work into it and make it their own.
We closed out a lease listing for a condo in Clarksville for our client Cheryl, finally, after much waiting and price adjusting. Weirdly, we waited almost a month for an application and then received three all at the same time. But regardless, we got it done and the tenants are happily moved in.
Client Success Stories
Client success stories are a new thing we're doing. I'm constantly on a mission to make real estate marketing less boring, and while client reviews on Zillow and Google are great, they're not the most interesting or personal. So we decided to try something we're calling "Client Success Stories." It's an interview we do with clients at the end of the transaction and then turn into a blog post. Our delightful client Caitlin was kind enough to do our first one with us. You can read her story here.
We have a new listing coming soon from Southeast Austin under $250K. This colorful, trendy 3 bedroom/2 bath is move-in ready. This is likely to go fast, so if you would like to be one of the first to know when this goes live, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Greyhounds not included :)
Check out this story Austin Therapy Magazine published featuring this cool home!