Living the Real Estate Life

Get Smart about Using ALEXA for work.

Prime day is TODAY and tomorrow and there are some deals to be had. It IS like Christmas in July!!!

Let’s start off with the lowest price on my favorite echo dot. You can pick up the 3rd generation echo dot for $17.99. This is the perfect time to start building your smart home environment. Click the link to see the deal. https://amzn.to/3AIxEmQ

If your looking for an echo that acts like a television or video calendar for the family check out the Echo Show 15, Full HD 15.6″ smart display. PRIME DAY price $179.99, regular price $249.99 https://amzn.to/3P5pwRY

There are other echo dots that are pretty cool and one of those is the Echo Dot with Clock, yep you get the best of both worlds. PRIME DAY price $32.99, regular price $59.99.

Prime Day is TODAY, TUESDAY, JULY 12 & WEDNESDAY, JULY 13, 2022. If you have been waiting to start using Alexa for your business, NOW is the time to get things started. Here to a list of all of my Alexa favorites. https://livingtherealestatelife.com/the-next-level/

OPPORTUNITY to START

I use the Amazon Alexa products for real estate and for teaching real estate classes and AMAZON has announced the NEXT Prime Day which is July 12 & 13. Keep a look out for early & Prime day deals here. I am look forward to seeing LOTS of Echo dot and smart home opportunities.

Updated Technology Class Now Available

“Take a walk on the wild side.”– Lou Reed
I am excited to announce that I have re-written and now have FULL Texas Real Estate Commission approval for my latest version of AMAZON ALEXA, and her friends, for REAL ESTATE. The class is titled: Making ALEXA Work for Real Estate #43586. You want to WIN more listings? You just need to add the value that is missing, a personal marketing touch. Here’s the kicker– You don’t have to spend a fortune or be a computer genius. It’s time to learn how easy it is to Make ALEXA work for YOUR real estate business. I am ready to teach you what you’ve been missing. This class will be offered IN PERSON & on zoom. I suggest the IN PERSON class as you will get a chance to see and hold the Alexa devices and start making some decisions on where you want to start. Click here to see more.

***** Making ALEXA Work for Real Estate #43586 (3 Hours T.R.E.C. Continuing Education) Use technology to give your seller’s the best opportunity to sell their home in ANY market. Secure more listings & elevate your listing presentation, with little out of pocket. This class will introduce you to Alexa, the Voice Assistant & her friends. You will learn how to create an in home, interactive showing experience that uses YOU & YOUR seller’s marketing message & light up the house—THE SHOWING A BUYER WILL NEVER FORGET! We will also discuss daily uses, converting your blog to a Voice blog, a brief history of voice assistants, how to protect your clients, & where The One to Four Family Residential Contract resale mentions this technology. Learn from an Alexa Voice Skill award winner and creator of the first Alexa voice Skill for Real Estate in The Woodlands, Texas. ***** Authored and Taught by Scott Culberson, Provider Living the Real Estate Life #10445

Helping you to…
LIVE the real estate LIFE,

Scott

AVAILABLE NOW, but not for LONG

I am reposting this, not only because it’s a good post, but because the ECHO FLEX is back in stock for a short time and it will be a short time because this item sells out fast. Read on to see why this device is GREAT!!!

My first favorite smart device is a smart speaker from Amazon, the Echo Flex. THIS IS A GREAT SMART SPEAKER TO GET YOU STARTED–With a starting price tag of $24.99 you immediately start to see why I like this device. The small price tag is only equaled by it’s small size(2.8″tall by 2.6″ wide), but don’t be fooled their is ALOT you can do with this device. This is the only Alexa speaker that plugs straight into the wall. What comes in the box is the Echo Flex and some instructions that’s it, NO CORD. You plug the Echo Flex directly into an outlet and you can plug it in RIGHT side up or UPSIDE DOWN. I’ll explain why you might want to do that later. The Echo Flex has a 3.5mm line out on the side, perfect for plugging into a speaker, a USB PORT on the bottom, and Bluetooth capabilities. The microphones, speakers and on/off buttons are on the face of the Echo Flex. The speaker is small, but with the Bluetooth capability you can synch to a more powerful Bluetooth speaker or an Amazon Echo Dot or like I mentioned earlier you can run that 3.5mm wire to a bigger and better speaker. Because of it’s size and the ability to plug directly into an outlet this Echo can go places other echo’s have difficulty like behind a counter or on a wall that doesn’t have a table or ledge near it. You can use this device just like other Echo devices, calling the wake word and then asking for what you need. Wake words include: Alexa, Computer, Echo, Amazon, Ziggy and any of the celebrity voices you have paid for. Here is an Amazon link to the Echo Flex.

The Echo Flex has several accessories that you can use with the device and one of these is my second favorite smart device. Important thing to note you can only use one accessory with the Echo Flex at a time. I mean you plug the accessory into the USB port on the bottom of the Echo Flex. The three most popular accessories are a digital clock, a night-light and a motion sensor. The brand of accessory that I have tested and have had positive results with is made by Third Reality. The device that I have tested is the motion Sensor, $14.99. You would plug the motion sensor into the bottom of the Echo Flex and then plug the Echo Flex into an outlet. Your motion detection would be at the bottom of the device. If you are not getting the range that you want you simply unplug the Echo Flex, flip it upside down and now the motion detector is on the top. Here is an Amazon link to the Motion Sensor for Echo Flex. Link to the Clock. Link to the Night-light.

Having a motion detector with a speaker opens up a world of opportunity with Amazon Routines. Your looking at around a $40.00 one time fee. Let me be clear, that’s buying an Echo Flex and a Third Reality Motion Sensor and does not include any shipping and handling. You can add Amazon Prime or Amazon music but all of your echo devices will work fine without an Amazon Prime or Amazon music account. Let’s talk about routines.
The flow of a routine is: Trigger=Action.
Your trigger is motion detected. Your action could be all of the following: 1) Sound “dog barking” 2) Smart Home “lamp goes on” 3) Alexa says “Someone’s in the kitchen”. You can also set this routine for certain days of the week and certain times of the day. You can then have the routine wait for let’s say 15 minutes then turn off the lamp. Lastly you can suppress the routine for a number of hours or minutes before it will run again, that way people won’t be tripping it over and over again and it becoming annoying.

The small price tag and size makes the Echo Flex and it’s motion detector the perfect tool for any real estate agent or broker listing properties. It’s perfect for you to promote your listings as buyer’s tour the property and you might want to use one during and open house. After all Alexa is the ultimate assistant, put her to work upstairs or in another part of the home. She can talk to buyers upstairs while you talk to a group in the kitchen. The ultimate open house that EVERYONE will be talking about.

By buying through any of the links above I will earn a commission at no cost to you:)

Helping you to…
Live the Real Estate Life,

Scott

Upcoming Class–Sign up today

CLICK LINK BELOW TO REGISTER. Email me if you have issues. Scott@scottculberson.com. Sorry you are unable to register the day of class.

Public Improvement District “P.I.D.” Summary

lying couple on grass and dream three cloud houses collage

A Public Improvement District (P.I.D.) in Texas is a common way for a subdivision developer to create infrastructure for the subdivision they are creating.  The developer will choose their location and begin laying out what the development would look like.  The developer would also get in contact with the city that the property is in so that the development follows the local guidelines.  The developer may see a need to create a P.I.D. so that they can recoup money they pay upfront for lights, sidewalks or many other uses.  Once the developer sees the need to establish a P.I.D. they request the city to sponsor their P.I.D. through the city’s formal process.  There are two local government codes that P.I.D.’s can be created under in Texas: 372 and 382.  For example, the P.I.D.’s in Conroe and Tomball are created through government code 372.  Once the city has approved the P.I.D. the citizens that live in that subdivision will be assessed a P.I.D. tax and it can be seen under the jurisdiction section of the taxes.  A citizen that is paying a P.I.D. tax can pay off their portion at any time.  IMPORTANT NOTE—there may be some lag time from the creation of the P.I.D. and the P.I.D. tax showing up on the tax records.  This can vary but is typically when the subdivision has it’s first completed home.  New home developers in Tomball and Conroe have been given information from their respective cities for the public about the P.I.D.’s they have created.  The total number of P.I.D.’s in Tomball and Conroe at the time of this article was 17.  The trend is for new developments to create a P.I.D.

Can an existing subdivision create a P.I.D.?  The answer is they can, but they usually don’t.
Let’s say you live in a subdivision that has sidewalks that are cracked badly, they look horrible, and you can’t even push a stroller without it being dangerous. The homeowners in that subdivision could approach their Homeowners Association and ask them to create a P.I.D. to fix the sidewalks.  The H.O.A. would need to gather a petition with more than 50% of the homeowners agreeing to the P.I.D. tax.  That petition would then be taken to the city for a hearing.  The hearing is where it goes bad if the H.O.A. did not get a large majority agreeing to the P.I.D.  Citizens do not usually give themselves a new tax to pay, but it can be done and that’s pretty much the process.  It is rare to see a new P.I.D. created in a subdivision that is established.

Here are some other details you might want to be aware of.  If a person lives in a P.I.D. and they wish to sell, they MUST provide notice of the P.I.D. to the buyer before the contract is executed.  Sellers that are selling condominiums, new construction, raw land, commercial and residential homes all must provide the P.I.D. notice.  The seller should be aware that they are in a P.I.D. for one of two reasons.  The first way a seller should be aware if they are in a P.I.D. is they are and have been receiving a bill for that P.I.D.  If this is the case the P.I.D. should show up in the Jurisdiction section of the tax records. The second is that if a new P.I.D. has been created or is in the process of being created the seller would have received notices in the mail for hearings about the P.I.D. that was created or in the process of being created.  In this case the tax records may not show the P.I.D. since it is new or still in the creation process.

Click here to review EXEMPTIONS under the Texas Property Code but remember Condominiums are NO LONGER exempt.

My 2 Favorite Smart Devices for Real Estate and Life as we know it

My first favorite smart device is a smart speaker from Amazon, the Echo Flex. THIS IS A GREAT SMART SPEAKER TO GET YOU STARTED–With a starting price tag of $24.99 you immediately start to see why I like this device. The small price tag is only equaled by it’s small size(2.8″tall by 2.6″ wide), but don’t be fooled their is ALOT you can do with this device. This is the only Alexa speaker that plugs straight into the wall. What comes in the box is the Echo Flex and some instructions that’s it, NO CORD. You plug the Echo Flex directly into an outlet and you can plug it in RIGHT side up or UPSIDE DOWN. I’ll explain why you might want to do that later. The Echo Flex has a 3.5mm line out on the side, perfect for plugging into a speaker, a USB PORT on the bottom, and Bluetooth capabilities. The microphones, speakers and on/off buttons are on the face of the Echo Flex. The speaker is small, but with the Bluetooth capability you can synch to a more powerful Bluetooth speaker or an Amazon Echo Dot or like I mentioned earlier you can run that 3.5mm wire to a bigger and better speaker. Because of it’s size and the ability to plug directly into an outlet this Echo can go places other echo’s have difficulty like behind a counter or on a wall that doesn’t have a table or ledge near it. You can use this device just like other Echo devices, calling the wake word and then asking for what you need. Wake words include: Alexa, Computer, Echo, Amazon, Ziggy and any of the celebrity voices you have paid for. Here is an Amazon link to the Echo Flex.

The Echo Flex has several accessories that you can use with the device and one of these is my second favorite smart device. Important thing to note you can only use one accessory with the Echo Flex at a time. I mean you plug the accessory into the USB port on the bottom of the Echo Flex. The three most popular accessories are a digital clock, a night-light and a motion sensor. The brand of accessory that I have tested and have had positive results with is made by Third Reality. The device that I have tested is the motion Sensor, $14.99. You would plug the motion sensor into the bottom of the Echo Flex and then plug the Echo Flex into an outlet. Your motion detection would be at the bottom of the device. If you are not getting the range that you want you simply unplug the Echo Flex, flip it upside down and now the motion detector is on the top. Here is an Amazon link to the Motion Sensor for Echo Flex. Link to the Clock. Link to the Night-light.

Having a motion detector with a speaker opens up a world of opportunity with Amazon Routines. Your looking at around a $40.00 one time fee. Let me be clear, that’s buying an Echo Flex and a Third Reality Motion Sensor and does not include any shipping and handling. You can add Amazon Prime or Amazon music but all of your echo devices will work fine without an Amazon Prime or Amazon music account. Let’s talk about routines.
The flow of a routine is: Trigger=Action.
Your trigger is motion detected. Your action could be all of the following: 1) Sound “dog barking” 2) Smart Home “lamp goes on” 3) Alexa says “Someone’s in the kitchen”. You can also set this routine for certain days of the week and certain times of the day. You can then have the routine wait for let’s say 15 minutes then turn off the lamp. Lastly you can suppress the routine for a number of hours or minutes before it will run again, that way people won’t be tripping it over and over again and it becoming annoying.

The small price tag and size makes the Echo Flex and it’s motion detector the perfect tool for any real estate agent or broker listing properties. It’s perfect for you to promote your listings as buyer’s tour the property and you might want to use one during and open house. After all Alexa is the ultimate assistant, put her to work upstairs or in another part of the home. She can talk to buyers upstairs while you talk to a group in the kitchen. The ultimate open house that EVERYONE will be talking about.

By buying through any of the links above I will earn a commission at no cost to you:)

Helping you to…
Live the Real Estate Life,

Scott

SUPER VOICE GUDED HOME GOES LIVE THIS WEEKEND

Have you wondered if you could leverage Voice Technology for your real estate listings? Maybe you like the idea but want to see it in action. If you are in the Houston area there is another opportunity to hear a Voice Guided Home in action IN PERSON.
119 Kate Place Court, Montgomery, TX 77316.
You can make is a Super weekend by visiting one of the Open Houses February 12th or 13th. See HAR.com for more information.

Please share your feedback with the showing service, but I would love to hear from you also. You can email me and Voice Guided questions or comments to Info@LivingtheRealEstateLife.com

The future will be heard and that future is now!!!

TEXAS LEGAL UPDATE 2 #42040 PROVIDER LIVING THE REAL ESTATE LIFE #10445

LEGAL UPDATE 2 #42040  direct and to the point…This class is required for ALL real estate agents wishing to renew their license. Agents in their first two years of real estate will also have to take this course along with current sales agents and brokers that that currently hold an active real estate license. Students will need to download materials prior to class at https://livingtherealestatelife.com/etc/ 4-hour T.R.E.C required elective class Taught by Scott Culberson, Provider Living the Real Estate Life #10445

Tuesday, January 25, 2022
          ZOOM-IN/Check-in=8:40 am
          Class starts=9:00
          Class ends=1:00 pm
This is an online class

Cost: $40.00

Registration Link: https://livingtherealestatelife.com/class/broadcast-legal-update-2-42040/

Print your Texas Realtor Fast Pass and prepare to share when you join the zoom class.  Here is an article about how to verify your identity for a Texas real estate continuing education class.
https://livingtherealestatelife.com/2020/03/30/verifying-your-identity-for-broadcast-c-e-classes/ 

Please download the manual prior to class. https://livingtherealestatelife.com/etc/

Once you have registered and paid you will receive an email with a link to the ZOOM LIVE Online class two days before class and the day of class. We cannot accept same day registrations.

Living the Real Estate Life.com Refund Policy: email refund.my.class@gmail.com prior to class. We will work to reschedule requests received during or after class.

This is an online class; I must be able to see & hear you and you must be able to see and hear me.  You must have a camera and remain on camera during the class. You cannot drive or ride in a car during class.

TEXAS LEGAL UPDATE 1 #42039 PROVIDER LIVING THE REAL ESTATE LIFE #10445

LEGAL UPDATE I #42039 Pretty straight forward…This class is required for ALL real estate agents wishing to renew their license. Agents in their first two years of real estate will also have to take this course along with current sales agents and brokers that that currently hold an active real estate license.  Students will need to download materials prior to class at https://livingtherealestatelife.com/etc/4-hour T.R.E.C required elective class taught by Scott Culberson an independent instructor for Provider Living the Real Estate Life #10445.

Thursday, January 20, 2022
          ZOOM-IN/Check-in=8:40 am
          Class starts=9:00
          Class ends=1:00 pm
This is an online class

Cost: $40.00

Registration Link : https://livingtherealestatelife.com/class/broadcast-legal-update-1-42039/

Print your Texas Realtor Fast Pass and prepare to share when you join the zoom class.  Here is an article about how to verify your identity for a Texas real estate continuing education class.
https://livingtherealestatelife.com/2020/03/30/verifying-your-identity-for-broadcast-c-e-classes/ 

Please download the manual prior to class. https://livingtherealestatelife.com/etc/

Once you have registered and paid you will receive an email with a link to the ZOOM LIVE Online class two days before class and the day of class. We cannot accept same day registrations.

Living the Real Estate Life.com Refund Policy: email refund.my.class@gmail.com prior to class. We will work to reschedule requests received during or after class.

This is an online class; I must be able to see & hear you and you must be able to see and hear me.  You must have a camera and remain on camera during the class. You cannot drive or ride in a car during class.