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Opinion Editorials

Anna Altic- Agent Genius’ Best of Writer series

The AG Best of Writer series is a culmination of the editorial team’s picks of a variety of authors’ most significant articles that have impacted the real estate industry. We hope you enjoy this look back and be sure to read the comments to the articles, as in many cases, they’re just as interesting as the articles themselves. Anna specializes in green real estate and provides a wealth of information on green trends and ecobrokerage:

Life after the tax credit- getting creative for your clients

03.29.10: “In addition, there is nothing I have seen so far that would preclude a homeowner from stacking this program with incentives being offered by their state or from their local utilities such as our TVA’s Energy Right Program. What about energy efficient mortgages or 203k loans? I say you stack that on too! Get creative, the skies the limit on how a program like this can benefit your clientele, the environment, and the contractors who need the work.”
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“Over Greening” is there such a thing?

04.08.2010: ““Over Greening” is a phrase I am publicly coining today. Not even Urban Dictionary has a pithy or perverse definition for this phrase and alas it’s up to me to bring it to the masses. It’s meant to be a play on the more well known Real Estate phrase “Over Improving.” As in, this home is over improved considering it’s location or size.”
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Energy Star- the government making a mockery of itself

04.16.10: “Apparently, there is such thing as the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and according to this NY Times Article the GAO recently audited Energy Star’s certification process with some pretty, ahem… embarrassing results. Among the bogus products that received the supposedly prestigious distinction were a “gasoline-powered alarm clock” and an air purifier which was nothing more than an electric heater with a feather duster glued to the front of it.”
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Greening your MLS- yes you can!

04.30.10: “I just got back from REBar Camp Nashville (woot!!) this week where I ended up leading a discussion on “anything green.” Ok, so my group was small I mean quaint but we spent 30 productive minutes talking about how the sustainability movement is impacting our industry. One poor fellow kept lamenting. “My city is just a couple of years behind everyone else.” I have to admit, I was a lamenter a couple of years ago and at some point had an epiphany that lamenting it wasn’t going to change it. I thought it would be fun to rehash my crowning acheivement in hopes it might help a few of you see it’s really not that hard to green pimp your MLS.”
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WalkScore- every house has one

05.25.10: “I was perusing the latest copy of NAR’S On Common Ground, a biannual journal discussing smart growth and Realtors. Ever heard of it? I hadn’t until a couple of months ago. Unfortunately, I can’t find that it’s published on line anywhere. However, here is the page where you can request hard copies should you or your firm like to have some on hand. This edition covers everything from understanding Generation Y buyers to bike friendly cities. It’s a great magazine with useful information about emerging sustainable trends affecting our industry.”
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Eco-friendly Kool Aid and why you should be drinkin’ it

08.01.10: “AG’s own Tara Steele shared a graph from The Times based on Case Shiller data showing the last hundred years’ rise and fall of home prices. Included is a future projection based on how leading economists expect home values to perform as government propping, foreclosure abatement, and tax credits wind down. I actually threw up in my mouth a little bit as I felt the now omnipresent pit in the top of my stomach grow.”
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What motivates a green buyer? Knowing may change your strategy

08.23.10: “I am a student of people and when I take buyers out I frequently take mental notes of their comments, habits, and overall energy when they view homes. Frankly, those insights come in more handy for me in prepping my sellers on getting their homes market ready or preparing for an open house than any of that advice you see on real estate websites or DIY shows. Why? I personally believe one size doesn’t fit all in homes and neighborhoods and understanding what consumers are looking at can completely change how you would advise a seller”
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EcoBroker versus NAR’s green designation

09.09.10: “I wrote an article here a couple of weeks ago about what motives a green buyer and one of the survey questions from the the Shelton Group report I referenced was about the Green Realtor Designations. More specifically how likely would the respondent be to use a Realtor who had invested in additional training and education to assist them with a home purchase. 13% of the respondents specifically said they would indeed want a Realtor with specific green credentials.”
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Analyzing whether or not green homes are really worth more

11.21.10: “I’ve written several articles about green homes as well as the steady growth of the green building industry and by far the most common question I get is; are green certified homes actually worth more than non certified comparable homes? There is a statistic out there I’ve seen on sites such as Energy Star and RESNET that states for every $1 a home saves in energy cost, it’s value increases by $10-$20. With average annual energy costs at about$1800 per household and green homes performing about 20-50% more efficient than standard, it stands to reason a green home would be worth anywhere from 2k to 20k or more in value.”
Read more…

Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.


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