the Lame Duck weeks - 6.5 things you can do.

By
Real Estate Broker with Coldwell Banker Residential

My last closing of 2010 should take place today, if the real estate gods are willing and the creek don't rise. (keep yer fingers crossed)

So I'm just gonna kick back, put my heels up on my desk, and revel in the nothingness of those two lame duck weeks, as we head into 2011 (Ohmigosh.. can you believe it?!  Two-Thousand-and-freakin'-Eleven!!)  After all, there's very little business that occurs between now and New Year's (as my clients with homes sitting on the market can attest), very few buyers out there, and very little action.

But, does that mean I should sit around with my feet up, my hands behind my back and a Macanudo in my teeth? (That's right Lawrence, I said Macanudo).  Of course not, there's still plenty to do.

1) this would be a good time to go through your files from 2010.  Clean them up (throw away any duplicates in the files, and get rid of any part of the file that you don't need to archive).

2) If you're planning on entering the 21st century any time soon, you might take those completed files from #1 and SCAN them into your computer, and then put them on a CD.  You can probably fit your entire 2010 on a single CD (don't just trust them to your computer hard-drive... that would be a biiiiig mistake), and for those of you lucky enough that you can't fit them on a single... put them on TWO CDs.

3) Shred old, sensitive materials.  Chances are your office has a shredder, make use of it.  Don't just throw those papers from numbers 1 & 2 into the trash where they could become fodder for identity thieves... especially since some of those files, might have a social security number on them... shred them.  If you want to do an office-wide shredding party, there are companies that will bring a truck-sized shredder to your parking lot and shred for you in bulk. 

If you really want to be community-minded.... hire the bulk-shredder, and open it up to your community (as a community service)... ie: "Bring your sensitive documents to our parking lot on Sunday from 2-4:00, and we'll shred your documents for free! 

4) Excellent time to put your sphere-of-influence, or mailing lists in order.  This is what Brian Buffini talks about when he discusses his A, B, and C people.  Who sent you business this year?  Who din't!  Shuffle, shuffle toil and trouble...  or something like that.

5) Great time to connect with existing and past clients.  Phone them, e-mail them, text them, show up face-to-face.  If you're one of those drop-by people, drop by!  Try to stay out of their way during Christmas, though... lessn't they're not Christian, and then they'll probably be happy to see you.

6) Clean your desk.  That's right, that piece of wood hiding behind those heaps and piles of paper.  Nothing makes you feel better than pulling the big trash-can out, and reorganize your drawers, and make that shiny wood surface visible again.  Besides, nothing gets your manager's adrenaline going more than when she walks by your desk as you're cleaning things out... and she says, wide-eyed
    "What're you doin'?"
    "Just cleaning my desk out"
(try to look grumpy).
    "Cleaning your desk out?  Any particular reason?"
    "I've decided to take my license across town to our competition... 'cause I don't like the coffee we have in the kitchen"

Nah... don't say that... the wide-eyed look is enough... don't torture her, she's had a tough year, too.

If you feel like taking on a bigger project, try cleaning out your TRUNK... (I know, I know... it makes me shudder, too... I'll wait 'till spring!)

7) Write a blog-post telling folks what they can do with those last two weeks of the year, and post it on Active Brain.... oh, wait... ignore that... that one's mine!

I'm sure there are more things you can think of to do in these two weeks... but I'm tired (yawwwwn), I'm gonna put my feet up and take a nap.

Posted by

 ALAN MAY, Realtor®
Specializing in Evanston Real Estate and North Shore Real Estate

Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate, 2929 Central Street, Evanston, IL 60201
847.425.3779      Cell: 847.924.3313      Email: Almay@aol.com

Evanston Real Estate & North Shore Real Estate
Licensed in Illinois

   

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  1. Pamela Stangler 12/17/2010 09:28 AM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Cindy - I can see my desk again... damn, who knew it was wood-grained?

Leslie - thank you... I consider that high praise.

Jeanne - sounds like a fine time.

December 18, 2010 12:28 AM
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Larry Story
Total Care Realty, LLC, Greensboro, NC Real Estate
Total Care Realty

Alan,

Lame Duck season I am sorry but I do not have one of those.  I am still working the new buy side contract we just signed and working on the 9 new listings I got within the last 2 weeks.  It's raining short sales here.  I have had to turn some down because I will not do a strategic short sale. 

December 18, 2010 09:23 AM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Larry - glad to hear it... somebody has to be busy!!

December 18, 2010 09:50 AM
Anonymous #34
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Anonymous

Amen!  Sometimes the "down time" is the best time to trudge through the menial tasks we take for granted when things are cranking away at break-neck speeds.  There are so many unforeseen nuances to our business, and in addition, are so easy to put to the side and slate for "tomorrow".  I agree 100% that we need to stay on top of the minor details, as they can snowball into major deals down the road, as well as avoiding future conflicts.  As always great post!

December 19, 2010 03:41 AM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Alex - you said it, big guy!

December 19, 2010 09:53 AM
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