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Greetings from the Epicenter of Real Estate Blogging


What you learn quickly when you’re a real estate blogger in the Phoenix area is you’re not lone. Last night I discovered another half-dozen local bloggers while trying to find someone using the Arizona Regional MLS’ basic IDX feed.

The above photo features some of the area’s best and brightest – oh, and also the rather large man in black on the left. Not pictured is Dru Bloomfield, one of three bloggers who all work in McCormick Ranch, a subdivision in Scottsdale. John Wake, making an odd clawing motion in the back left, and Irene Hammond (in the pink) are the other two.

(Incidentally, if I disappear, please tell the authorities to start the investigation with the Scottsdale agents, none of whom agree with my contention that their city’s overrated.)

Up front are Christoph Schweiger and Steve Belt. Heather Barr is nearly eclipsed by me, at least as much as someone so shimmery can be eclipsed. Chris Butterworth is behind Irene and in the back right, with the cast on his right arm, is the unstoppable Jay Thompson.

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Helping Each Other Build Their Business

You’d expect for us to be hyper-competitive and not up for such gatherings in an online market as competitive as the one here in Phoenix. But with one glaring exception, nothing is further from the truth. Since those pictured aren’t trying to put a price tag on their own marketing expertise, we share ideas freely.

Entering the Phoenix real estate blogging world now is a bit different than it was a couple of years ago when I started. There was the other dog, not quite so rabid as today. There was Jay. And that was it.

Now? Let’s just say when we get together again, we’re going to need another couple of tables … and at least another couple of hours to spend sharing our passion for the market and for our blogs.

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Written By

Jonathan Dalton is a Realtor with RE/MAX Desert Showcase in Peoria, Arizona and is the author of the All Phoenix Real Estate blog as well as a half-dozen neighborhood sites. His partner, Tobey, is a somewhat rotund beagle who sleeps 21 hours a day.



  1. Matthew Rathbun

    April 1, 2008 at 8:21 pm

    Agent meet-ups are great. I love getting together with folks outside of my market area to discuss the industry. It’s even better with food and drinks! I’m glad you all had fun!

  2. Jonathan Dalton

    April 1, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    I should have said Dru’s not pictured because she was holding the camera.

  3. Lani Anglin-Rosales

    April 1, 2008 at 8:44 pm

    So I bet you got VIP seating when you told the hostess that you were a group of influential real estate bloggers, huh? 😉

    It’s important for people to see the value in sharing ideas- when great minds come together, they will raise the bar, meanwhile the people clinging tightly to their ridiculous competitiveness will be left to follow the new bar set by the people they were attempting to exclude/squash/squander by being exclusive. In modern times, inclusion is the key to success.

  4. Dru Bloomfield

    April 1, 2008 at 9:24 pm

    It was a great time… my head is spinning from all the simultaneous conversations. High energy. Camaraderie. Market updates from around the valley. Thanks to you and Steve Belt for twittering this meet to life.

    We’ll discuss Scottsdale later!

  5. Steve Belt

    April 1, 2008 at 10:33 pm

    I couldn’t have been more thrilled by the reaction that we received from folks that heard about lunch as Jonathon and I were twittering. What a really cool way to generate “buzz” amongst colleagues, and an even better, to find how enthusiastic we were all to meet each other. I didn’t talk to anyone that didn’t immediately jump at the idea to want to meet. Due to table arrangements, I missed out on any meaningful discussion with Master Jay, so for that reason alone, more gatherings are necessary. And just to make sure Jonathon feels the most comfortable, it almost has to be in Scottsdale.

  6. Jay Thompson

    April 2, 2008 at 1:00 am

    Fabulous time. Needed to be longer, with more beer. But the company was great. It’s nice to share and meet new folks.

    Thanks for finding me in the parking lot Steve, otherwise I might still be driving around…

    Next time, Tempe? Queen Creek?

    I’ll go anywhere, its worth the drive.

  7. Christoph Schweiger

    April 2, 2008 at 9:05 am

    This was long overdue! Let’s do this again sometime soon because I need to catch up with the other end of the table.

  8. Shailesh Ghimire

    April 2, 2008 at 10:11 am

    Sniff sniff….

    I feel left out…. I only help finance your borrowers purchase… sniff.. sniff….


    I don’t mind sitting at the other table by myself just so I can say I was there… sniff sniff

  9. Steve Belt

    April 2, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Shailesh, I sure hope someone invited you. If not, it was a pure oversight, not intentional, totally a mistake on my part, and I take full responsibility for the error.

  10. Jonathan Dalton

    April 2, 2008 at 10:24 am

    Nah, this one’s my bad, not Steve … I was keeping this one for agents because if we invited a mortgage guy then we’d all just leave him with the tab.

    Wait … what was the logic in that one?

    I’ve not talked to the folks about another but I’d like to think we could make this happen again in the near future and expand it out a bit.

    Oh, and yes, I need to get us a round table. Got it.

  11. Jay Thompson

    April 2, 2008 at 10:31 am

    I’m pretty sure there are nothing but round tables in the East Valley…. 😉

  12. Jay Thompson

    April 2, 2008 at 10:37 am

    Here is the code to frame the free ARMLS IDX:

    BUT, the user HAS to have their URL in their ARMLS profile, or it won’t work.

  13. Jay Thompson

    April 2, 2008 at 10:39 am

    Gak, the tag doesn't work...

    Try this. (Add a "" at the beginning and end, and replace "XX123" with the actual agent ID)

    frame src=”” width=”510”

  14. Jay Thompson

    April 2, 2008 at 10:40 am

    Sigh. Stupid WordPress. See this link:

  15. Jonathan Dalton

    April 2, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    Thanks, Jay … I think he has it registered wrong but can fix it. I’m still pushing him to Killer IDX. It may not work the best for most of us here, but for him it would be fine.

  16. Bill Lublin

    April 2, 2008 at 12:55 pm

    I just want to know who broke Jay’s arm – 🙂

  17. Gabe Sumner

    April 4, 2008 at 1:31 pm

    Very neat! I would’ve been interested to attend this. Although I’m not a REALTOR, instead I’m a web programmer with a lot of experience dealing with IDX MLS systems (specifically ARMLS). Perhaps that makes me part of the problem? 🙂


    Gabe Sumner
    Scottsdale, AZ

  18. Dru Bloomfield

    March 26, 2011 at 12:22 am

    As we get ready for REBCPHX3, it’s amazing to see how much the social media landscape has evolved, and how much the local community has grown. Little did we know…

  19. Steve Belt

    March 26, 2011 at 5:41 am

    Indeed Dru…little did we know.

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