Connect with us

Opinion Editorials

Real Estate = Life




This is as impromptu a post as it gets but HAD to share because I’m a bit emotional and need to get it out.  I came back from RETechSouth feeling great for many reasons. I need to tell you that I was very impressed with the attention to detail of the conference in general – speakers, transitions, giveaways, interaction with attendees, stage, promotion, quality…….it goes on and on – congrats to Brad Nix and Matt Fagioli for putting a quality event together.

In addition to the actual conference, I am always energized when I see my Internet buddies IRL (if I had the time I would go to every single event) – so if you were wondering whether or not these events are worth it….they are!!!  (if only for the real life interaction, do it!!)

But most importantly because I was able to come out of Atlanta knowing that what I do has a purpose and social media facilitates the way Rick and I do business and our conscious decision to surround ourselves with like-minded people with similar values is right on!

I wrote a Miamism post this morning about real estate = relationships = life and this paragraph sums it up:

It’s not about sales sales sales!  It’s not about what the media will say next – It’s so much more than “how is the Miami Real Estate Market doing?” – It’s about LIVES!  How trivial can that really be?  Everyone needs a place to live, whether it’s temporary or not….feeling at home is one of the most important factors in everyone’s life, whether you choose to get help to achieve that or not – HOME is such a powerful word and some of us really care about how people achieve that.

My articles autopost to Facebook and within 10 minutes of posting, I received this answer from a client (and now friend):

what you say here, the importance of home to you and Rick and your drive to help others find it, is exactly what came shining through when you helped Ken and I find our Miami home. WE knew it was never about the sale. It was something bigger. We can never repay you or thank you enough.
Its the same philosophy Ive always tried to bring to my architectural and interiors practice – help the client find their own stamp, guide them to make it better than they could have imagined, and make a home.

WOW!!  needless to say, that made my day, my week, my existence

Think of how you approach your business and how you impact people’s life – we, as Realtors, have the power to influence lives, don’t ever take that for granted.

Ines is all Miami, all the time. A Miami Beach Realtor® with Majestic properties, Ines authors,, and and is always on communication's leading edge. She goes out of her way to engage and be engaged, often using Mojitos to keep the mood light and give everything she does a Miami flavor. You can find her goofing off or instigating trouble at Twitter, Flickr, Facebook or LinkedIn.

Continue Reading


  1. Ken Brand

    March 23, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Yes exactly.

    Nice to see passion about life and people and home mixed like a fine Mojito. The older I get the more I realize, as you’ve shared, everything is rarely about what it’s about, it’s bigger and juicier.


  2. Ines Hegedus-Garcia

    March 23, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    Ken – you are just too cool – “mixed like a fine mojito”…isn’t that what it is ALL ABOUT?

  3. Real Estate Feeds

    March 23, 2009 at 6:58 pm

    Real Estate = Life: Get out of your feed reader and comment on this post- we PROMISE that the ShamWow guy won\’t..

  4. Mark Eibner

    March 23, 2009 at 7:16 pm

    we’re at it again Real Estate = Life: Get out of your feed reader and comment on this post- we ..

  5. sheilabragg

    March 23, 2009 at 8:29 pm

    Real Estate = Life: Get out of your feed reader and comment on this post- we PROMISE that the ShamWow guy won\’t..

  6. Brad Nix

    March 23, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    I couldn’t agree more Ines about your real estate=relationships=life message (of course I’m cool with you digging REtechSouth as well), but most importantly LIFE and the relationships we create, strengthen and enjoy matter most. So glad we got to meet IRL last week and I look forward to seeing you again (rachel says hi too).

  7. Ines Hegedus-Garcia

    March 23, 2009 at 9:06 pm

    Brad – you did a heluva job and thanks for letting me be a part of it – as for Rachel, she rocks (and as our friend Bill Lublin would say….I think you married over your head) 😉

  8. Chris Shouse

    March 23, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    You are so right Ines it is all about the relationships and I am to this day friends with almost all of my clients. It makes my heart smile to see a house made into a home. Can not wait to meet you IRL.

  9. Ines Hegedus-Garcia

    March 23, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    I hope it will happen soon Chris! What’s great about this medium is that you can tell right away who really cares and who has pure intentions – can’t get better than that!

  10. Tina in Virginia

    March 24, 2009 at 6:09 am

    Ines, your passion is what makes you the wonderful person you are. What a wonderful, from the heart post. It was great seeing you at RETech South and I hope to see you again soon.

  11. Ines Hegedus-Garcia

    March 24, 2009 at 10:31 am

    Tina – you are so sweet, it was awesome to see you as well and I’m sure we will run into each other soon 😉

  12. Kathleen Buckley

    March 24, 2009 at 3:12 pm

    Ines- Thank you for articulating this! So often agents are viewed as cut throat and self-centered. You are a prime example to the contrary!

  13. Teresa Boardman

    March 25, 2009 at 8:02 am

    Honestly I think it was one of the best conferences i ever went too. very well organized and a lot of variety. I came away feeling inspired and really enjoyed the time we all spent together after hours.

    I have never driven to a conference before and that also turned out to be an amazing and memorable experience.

  14. ines

    March 25, 2009 at 8:16 am

    Kathleen, that means a lot to me, thank you – it’s crazy how a “technical” conference can leave you with such basic humane principles (Jeff Turner’s presentation about the computer being a MORON was the highlight)

    T – could it have been Jack being present? (hmmmm)

  15. Jay Thompson

    March 25, 2009 at 8:19 am

    Great post Ines. I just got back from NAR’s Association Executive Institute where the highlight was getting to meet Mariana IRL. Met several others too at a Tweet Up and got to revisit some old friends. It was fabulous.

    That note from your client/friend is priceless.

    Great photo too! Could be the cover shot of the “Women of Real Estate” calendar… 😉

  16. ines

    March 25, 2009 at 8:25 am

    Lucky you Jay, I’ve been dying to meet Mariana and Derek and can’t believe we have not crossed paths yet (but will soon, I’m sure). That note from our client made me cry (and they know it) It’s amazing when you can make such a great connection with someone online from the start.

    As for the calendar….what are you guys up to?

  17. Paula Henry

    March 25, 2009 at 9:49 am

    Ines – This post sums up what life in real estate is really about – the relationships are what matters. Our clients know when we care; as displayed by the wonderful note you received form your client.

    Some day I will meet all of you!

  18. ines

    March 25, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Paula – I am looking forward to meeting you as well (I’m sure it will be soon)

  19. Teresa Boardman

    March 25, 2009 at 2:03 pm

    @Ines love your post on ag

  20. Jeff Turner

    March 25, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    RT @TBoard: @Ines love your post on ag (I’ll second that)

  21. RE Success Club

    March 25, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    RT @TBoard: @Ines love your post on ag …check out the passion in the client’s testimonial…inspiring.

  22. Mack

    March 25, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    This past week I met a really nice lady at RETechSouth. She had a wonderful smile, was a great conversationalist, unselfishly shared her knowledge of social media and I am proud to say: wrote this post.

  23. ines

    March 25, 2009 at 3:07 pm

    Hi Mack!! it was such a pleasure to meet you! (thanks for that btw – are you trying to make me cry…..we leos are very emotional)

  24. stevenstearns

    March 25, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    Real estate is about LIVES, not just the market: via agent Genius

  25. Brenda Carus

    March 25, 2009 at 7:18 pm

    RT @stevenstearns: Real estate is about LIVES, not just the market: via agent Genius [True]

  26. Bobbi Blades

    March 28, 2009 at 11:16 am

    I sit in my office today pulling together a new presentation on Social Media and how it will affect our business. You guys are incredible. You’ve reaffirmed my own belief in how social networking online won’t take the place of real time voice and physical contact but, instead, will enhance it.

    How many times have we all said “I wish so and so was here to share this with.” Now, they can be.

    If you could give me, in one sentence, single most important feature to social media communication to you personally and in your business, I sure would appreciate it.

  27. ines

    March 28, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    Bobbi – thank you so much and as for the single sentence: The single most important feature to social media communication to me and my business is the connections I make on a daily basis that i would not otherwise be able to achieve, whether by blog, video, chat – powerful medium!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Opinion Editorials

This website is like Pinterest for WFH desk setups

(OPINION / EDITORIAL) If you’ve been working from home at the same, unchanged desk setup, it may be time for an upgrade. My Desk Tour has the inspiration you need.



Man browsing desk setups on My Desk Tour

Whether you’re sitting, standing, or reclining your way through the pandemic, you’re most likely doing it from home these days. You’re also probably contending with an uninspired desk configuration hastily cobbled together in 2020, which—while understandable—might be bringing you down. Fortunately, there’s an easy, personable solution to spark your creativity: My Desk Tour.

My Desk Tour is a small website started by Jonathan Cai. On this site, you will find pictures of unique and highly customized desk setups; these desk configurations range from being optimized for gamers to coders to audiophiles, so there’s arguably something for everyone—even if you’re just swinging by to drool for a bit.

Cai also implements a feature in which site users can tag products seen in desk photos with direct links to Amazon so you don’t have to poke around the Internet for an hour in search of an obscure mouse pad. This is something Cai initially encountered on Reddit and, after receiving guidance from various subreddits on the issue of which mouse to purchase, he found the inspiration to create My Desk Tour.

The service itself is pretty light—the landing page consists of a few desk setup photos and a rotating carousel of featured configurations—but it has great potential to grow into a desk-focused social experience of sorts.

It’s also a great place to drop in on if you’re missing the extra level of adoration for your desk space that a truly great setup invokes. Since most people who have been working from home since the spring didn’t receive a ton of advance notice, it’s reasonable to assume that the majority of folks have resigned themselves to a boring or inefficient desk configuration. With a bit of inspiration from My Desk Tour, that can change overnight.

Of course, some of the desk options featured on the site are a bit over the top. One configuration boasts dual ultra-wide monitors stacked atop each other, and another shows off a monitor flanked by additional vertical monitors—presumably for the sake of coding. If you’re scrambling to stay employed, such a setup might be egregious.

If you’re just looking for a new way to orient your workspace for the next few months, though, My Desk Tour is worth a visit.

Continue Reading

Opinion Editorials

10 tips for anyone looking to up their professional work game

(OPINION / EDITORIAL) It’s easy to get bogged down by the details, procrastinate, and feel unproductive. Here are a few tips to help you stay on track and crush your professional goals.



work productivity

Self-reflection is critical to a growth mindset, which you must have if you want to grow and improve. If you are ready to take your professional game to the next level, here are some stories and tips to help you remain focused on killing your work goals.

1. Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is the thief of joy, as the quote goes. And, in the workplace it’s bound to make you second guess yourself and your abilities. This story explains when comparison can be useful, when to avoid it, and how to change your focus if it’s sucking the life out of you.

2. Burnout is real and the harder you work, the less productive you are. It’s an inverse relationship. But, there are ways to work smarter and have better life balance. Here are some tips to prioritize your workload and find more ease.

3. Stop procrastinating and start getting sh@t done. The reason we procrastinate may be less about not wanting to do something and more about the emotions underlying the task. Ready to get going and stop hemming and hawing, you got this and here’s the way to push through.

4. Perfection is impossible and if you seek this in your work and life, it’s likely you are very frustrated. Let that desire go and learn to be happy with excellence over perfection.

5. If you think you’re really awesome and seriously deserve more money, more responsibility, more of anything and are ready to drop the knowledge on your supervisor or boss, you may want to check this story out to see if your spinning in the right direction.

6. Technology makes it so easy to get answers so quickly, it’s hard to wait around for things to happen. We like instant gratification. Yet, that is another reason procrastination is a problem for some of us, but every person has a different way/reason for procrastinating. Learn what’s up with that.

7. Making choices can be a challenge for some of us (me included) who worry we are making the wrong choice. If you’ve ever struggled with decision making, you know it can be paralyzing and then you either make no decision or choose the safest option. What we have here is the Ambiguity Effect and it can be a real time suck. Kick ambiguity to the curb.

8. If you are having trouble interacting with colleagues or wondering why you don’t hear back from contacts it could be you are creeping folks out unintentionally (we hope). Here’s how to #belesscreepy.

9. In the social media era building your brand and marketing are critical, yet, if you’re posting to the usual suspects and seeing very little engagement, you’ve got a problem. Wharton Business School even did a study on how to fix the situation and be more shareable.

10. Every time you do a presentation that one co-worker butts in and calls you out. Dang. If you aren’t earning respect on the job, you will be limited in your ability to get to the next level. Respect is critical to any leadership position, as well as to making a difference in any role you may have within an organization, but actions can be misconstrued. There are ways to take what may be negative situations and use them to your advantage, building mutual respect.

You have the tools you need, now get out there, work hard, play hard, and make sh*t happen. Oh, and remember, growth requires continual reflection and action, but you got this.

Continue Reading

Opinion Editorials

The truth about unemployment from someone who’s been through it

(EDITORIAL) Unemployment benefits aren’t what you thought they were. Here’s a first-hand experience and what you need to know.




Have I ever told you how I owed the government over two grand because of unemployment in 2019, and only just finished paying it back this year?

This isn’t exactly the forum for memoirs, but this is relevant to everyone. So I’ll tell y’all anyway.

It all started back in 2018 when I came into work early, microwaved my breakfast, poured coffee, and got pulled into a collaboration room to hear, “We love you and your work, April, but we’ve been bought out and you’re being laid off.”

It was kind of awkward carrying my stuff out to the car with that Jimmy Dean sandwich in my mouth.

More awkward still was the nine months of unemployment I went through afterwards. Between the fully clothed shower crying, the stream of job denial, catering to people who carried rocks in their nostrils at my part-time job (yes, ew, yes, really), and almost dying of no-health-insurance-itis, I learned a lot!

The bigger lesson though, came in the spring of the following year when I filed my taxes. I should back up for a moment and take the time to let those of you unfamiliar with unemployment in Texas in on a few things that aren’t common knowledge.

1: You’re only eligible if you were laid off. Not if you had quit. Not fired. Your former company can also choose to challenge your eligibility for benefits if they didn’t like your face on the way out. So the only way you’re 100% guaranteed to get paid in (what the state calls) “a timely manner”, is a completely amicable split.

2: Overpayments have to go back. Immediately. If there’s an error, like several thousand of Texans found out this week, the government needs that cash back before you can access any more. If you’re not watching your bank account to make sure you’re getting the exact same check each time and you have an overpayment, rest assured that mistake isn’t going to take long to correct. Unfortunately, if you spent that money unknowingly–thought you got an ‘in these uncertain times’ kinder and gentler adjustment and have 0 income, you have a problem. Tying into Coronavirus nonsense is point three!

3: There are no sick days. If ever you’re unable to work for any reason, be it a car accident, childbirth, horrible internal infection (see also no-health-insurance-itis), you are legally required to report it, and you will not be paid for any days you were incapacitated. Personally, my no-health-insurance-itis came with a bad fever and bedrest order that axed me out of my part time job AND killed my unemployment benefits for the week I spent getting my internal organs to like me again. But as it turned out, the payment denial came at the right time because–

4: Unemployment benefits are finite. Even if you choose to lie on your request forms about how hard you’re searching for work, coasting is ill-advised because once the number the state allots you runs out…it’s out. Don’t lie on your request forms, by the way. In my case, since I got cut from my part-time gig, I got a call from the Texas Workforce Commission about why my hours were short. I was able to point out where I’d reported my sickness to them and to my employer, so my unpaid week rolled over to a later request date. I continued to get paid right up until my hiring date which was also EXACTLY when my benefits ran out.

Unemployment isn’t a career, which is odd considering the fact that unemployment payments are qualified by the government as income.

Ergo, fact number five…

5: Your benefits? They’re taxed.

That’s right, you will be TAXED for not having a job.

The stereotype of the ‘lazy unemployment collector burdening society’ should be fading pretty quickly for the hitherto uninformed about now.

To bring it back to my story, I’d completely forgotten that when I filed for unemployment in the first place, I’d asked for my taxes NOT to be withheld from it–assuming that I wasn’t going to be searching for full time work for very long. I figured “Well, I’ll have a tax refund coming since I’ll get work again no problem, it’ll cancel out.”

Except, it was a problem. Because of the nine month situation.

I’d completely forgotten about it by the time I threw myself into my new job, but after doing my taxes, triple checking the laws and what I’d signed, it was clear. Somehow…despite being at my lowest point in life, I owed the highest amount in taxes, somewhere around the 2k mark.

Despite being based on a system that’s tied to how much income you were getting before, and all the frustrating “safeguards” put in place to keep payments as low and infrequent as possible, Uncle Sam still wants a bite out of the gas-station Hostess pie that is your unemployment check. And as I’m writing this, more and more people are finding that out. And even as we enter 2021, there is still more to be aware of – we’re not out of the woods yet.

I’d like to end this on a more positive note… So let’s say we’ve all been positively educated! That’s a net gain, surely.

Keep your heads up, and masked.

Continue Reading

Our Great Partners

American Genius
news neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list for news sent straight to your email inbox.

Emerging Stories

Get The American Genius
neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to get business and tech updates, breaking stories, and more!