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Heather Elias, an Agent Genius



A New Voice

Heather Elias is the newest writer at Agent Genius and we are enthusiastic about her joining us! Heather is a self-proclaimed tech geek and loves learning about technology that more readily connects her with her clients in Loudon County, Virginia. Heather is very active in the social media world and you can often find her twittering about various local events and local real estate.

Heather has a degree in Public Relations and has an amazing grasp on reputation management and marketing and we can’t wait to learn more from her as she joins the Agent Genius group. Please welcome Heather in the comments!

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The American Genius - she has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH and Austin Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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  1. Matt Stigliano

    September 26, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Oooooh I get to be first!

    Welcome Heather! Public relations background, eh? Should be very helpful to all of us!

  2. Jason Sandquist

    September 26, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Ooooooh I get to be the second!

    Congrats on the new gig

  3. Lisa Sanderson

    September 26, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    Yay, Heather…congrats on this great new gig!! Can’t wait to hear what an actual bonafide PR person has to say about this crazy business. Get crackin’ on those articles!

  4. Robert D. Ashby

    September 26, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    Ok, I need to start congratulating those that AG has recently been picking, especially those that I got to meet in Vegas. Congrats, Heather, on becoming a genius.

  5. Jay Thompson

    September 26, 2008 at 5:27 pm

    It’s like an Connect SF reunion around here!

    Heather rocks. I hear she throws a wicked fastball too.


  6. Rocky

    September 26, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    ET Tu? The benefit package here at AG is the best! Make sure you take advantage of the Dental!

    Great to have you here!


  7. Jay Thompson

    September 26, 2008 at 5:35 pm

    Lani – Please convert my 401K to dental. And you got that vacation request, right?

  8. Toby & Sadie

    September 26, 2008 at 5:57 pm

    I knew I liked you for a reason Ms. Heather as a fellow PR person. Spent 8 years working in higher education public relations.

    Congrats on your amazing honor of becoming a genius!

  9. Bob Carney

    September 26, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    WOW, just about everyone I know is over here. Congrats on this wonderful addition to AG. MWA to HthrFlynn

  10. Mike Mueller

    September 26, 2008 at 6:43 pm

    No way!

    You know with the addition of just one more you have the perfect Charlies Angel picture…

    Besides, she says I look HOT!

  11. Mike Mueller

    September 26, 2008 at 6:48 pm

    Just found the original photo:

  12. Nick Bastian

    September 26, 2008 at 7:15 pm

    Wow! Another one of my favorites! Heather is such a great personality. She is kind, fun AND a geek! Another great addition to the Genius crew….

  13. ines

    September 26, 2008 at 10:27 pm

    Heather! Heather! heather!! woot woot

  14. Bill Lublin

    September 26, 2008 at 10:50 pm

    It keeps getting hotter and hotter here with all the amazing women – now that’s Genius at work
    Stuck with a crappy wireless connection in Chicago until seconds ago, and look at the wonderful surprise I get when I finally get on line! Thanks for the lovely surprise Lani! Welcome Heather – so nice to see more than 140 characters of you!

  15. Missy Caulk

    September 27, 2008 at 5:34 am

    Heather, (((clink, clink))) and she makes great margarita’s too !! Congratulations !

  16. Paula Henry

    September 27, 2008 at 7:49 am

    Heather – What terrific accolades here! Looking forward to getting to know you here at AG. Welcome!

  17. Jeremy Hart

    September 27, 2008 at 10:00 am

    Wow, and I get to be 17th! Congrats to Heather, and all the new Genius writers!

  18. Heather Elias

    September 27, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Thanks for the warm welcome! Feels good to be home. =)

  19. Ginger Wilcox

    September 27, 2008 at 3:36 pm

    welcome!!! Jay is right, it is like SF connect again. Agent Genuis keeps getting better and better!

  20. Kim Wood

    September 27, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    Yay!!! Congrats to you! So happy to celebrate with you last night !!! Looking forward to great things you have to say …. !

  21. Mike Lefebvre

    September 27, 2008 at 11:28 pm

    Congrats Heather!

    “Shots of Patron for all my genius friends!” (wink, wink….)

    ; )

  22. Rich Jacobson

    September 28, 2008 at 4:26 pm

    Heather: It is WAY cool to have you as part of the AG family! You’re the perfect addition!

  23. Heather Elias

    September 28, 2008 at 6:10 pm

    Thanks so much everyone…I can’t say how much of an honor it is to be part of the Genius family!!

  24. Matthew Rathbun

    September 28, 2008 at 7:43 pm

    Awwww, look at that smile! This was of course a natural addition. She is after all, from Virginia, quite smart and has just a dose of being snarky. Very cool to see you around these parts!

  25. Heather Elias

    September 30, 2008 at 10:24 am

    (so my Dad came along and read this, because of course he’s totally proud of me ~~thanks, Dad!~~ and he was laughing over the comments…said, these people definitely know you well!! Yes indeed, the friends that live inside my computer are just as much my friends when I see them in person….)

  26. Mariana Wagner

    September 30, 2008 at 3:47 pm

    YAY! Welcome to the clan. I look forward to your insights. 🙂

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Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home

When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?



Looking at the bigger picture

(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).

That said, dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).

They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.

“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”

Click here to continue reading the list of the 12 best places to buy a home…

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Housing News

Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?

With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.



aging housing inventory

aging housing inventory

The average home age is higher than ever

(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.

With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.

Prices of new homes on the rise

Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.

Click here to continue reading this story…

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Housing News

Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?

The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.



zillow move

zillow move

Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes

(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub,, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.

Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.

So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.

1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues

It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.

Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.

2. Two major media brands emerge

Last fall, the News Corp. acquisition of Move, Inc. was given the green light by the feds, and this month, Zillow finalized their acquisition of Trulia.

…Click here to continue reading this story…

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