Employment Report Analysis

20140309-080351.jpgAt first blush, it appeared that the jobs report was disappointing. The addition of 142,000 jobs in August was much less than the average of over two hundred thousand for the previous six months. Yet, the day of the report, the stock market reacted positively and interest rates did not fall as expected. What could have caused this “adverse” reaction? To us there are three possibilities. First, the same day as the jobs report, a cease fire was signed in Ukraine. As we have said previously, the world news is over-shadowing our domestic economic news this summer. If the truce holds, this is a positive indicator for the stock market but not necessarily positive for the continuation of lower interest rates.

Secondly, the markets may be betting that the lower number of jobs added might be a one-time occurrence. The jobs numbers are often revised in future months and the markets are not likely to get upset over one report. Now, if we get two or three reports below an average of 150,000 jobs each month, this could be worrisome to the markets. Looking at other indicators such as first time claims for unemployment and the ADP private payroll report, there was no indication that the job creation machine slowed down last month. Continue reading

Let’s Review “Objections” in the Sales Process

Keep Calm and Handle ObjectionsA few months back (actually 7 months ago) we published a couple of blog posts about the types of objections you might face in real estate sales and how to handle some specific objections.

As the Fall selling season is upon us, I thought it might be a good time to take a look at objections again.

Here are links to my previous posts.  If you have a specific objection that you hear often or have any ideas that might helps our readers, please post in the comments below.

Handling Objections in Real Estate Sales

Types of Objections in Real Estate Sales


Bethany Beach Flood Insurance Information

Flood Insurance ProgramThe following information was provided by the Town of Bethany Beach regarding flood insurance:


Many areas in the Town of Bethany Beach are low lying and/or are located in Special Hazard Flood areas and are prone to flooding during storms and heavy rains.  Most areas lying north of Garfield Parkway (Route 26) and east of Route 1 are in a coastal AE zone. Properties fronting on the ocean may be in a coastal V zone.  If you are in a flood plain, you should know about services available to you and how to protect yourself and your property from flooding.


The Town of Bethany Beach offers the following services: Continue reading

Well, Perhaps Not The Best of All Worlds

20140309-080351.jpgLast week we spoke with optimism about the fact that the economy is indeed recovering but interest rates are remaining lower than most had predicted for this year. We wondered whether we might actually have the best of both worlds — at least for a short period of time. However, we have to recognize why rates are so low while the economy is edging its way back to normal. If rates are low because there is no evidence of inflation and the economy is not in danger of overheating, that is a good thing. As long as the economy keeps improving.

On the other hand, if rates are down because of the violence which is occurring in several areas of the world, that is another matter. When the world is in crisis, it is not unusual for U.S. Treasuries to be a safe haven for investors. While the effects of low rates are still positive for our economy, we can’t actually describe this as a good thing. And there is a connection between the economy and these events. For example, the economic sanctions levied against Russia are already affecting the European economy. During the financial crisis we saw how an under-performing economy in Europe can affect our economy’s performance. Continue reading

Gracious Ways to Accept a Compliment

Do you have a tough time accepting compliments?

Most people do have a tough time accepting compliments.

You may have said to yourself at one time or another:

        I don’t like to toot my own horn.


        I’m not the type to brag.


        I don’t deserve it.


      They must be exaggerating.

    They feel sorry for me.

A compliment is a gift. If you don’t accept it, in effect what you are really doing is turning the “gift” down, insulting the person giving it and subtly suggesting that you don’t value their opinion!

Break the habit of self-deprecation and consider doing this instead:

  • A simple thank you will do – Look into their eyes and smile! (Or email Smiley faces)
  • Be appreciative – “I appreciate the compliment, especially from you.”
  • Recognize others – If someone else was involved, mention them too.
  • Ask for advice – “Thank you — and I was wondering if you could help me…”
  • Make a special effort to share your accomplishments – “I’m proud of myself today because…”

The good news is that mastering the art of graciously receiving a compliment helps you become more self-assured. The more self-assured you are, the more compliments you’ll get.

So, let the warm fuzzies begin!

What’s the best compliment you’ve received lately? Let me know if the comments below or on my Facebook page here:  Jeff Baxter Mortgage Team Facebook Page

Why Some People Don’t Trust Real Estate Agents

I recently read an article, written by another real estate agent, about why some real estate agents have a stellar reputation and why some cannot be trusted.

And, this applies to how other real estate agents and the general public perceives them.

I wanted to share with several of the possible reasons why some agents develop a bad reputation.

Inaccurate Description of Homes: The description claims that the home is move-in ready. When the client and real estate agent walk into the home, they find a hole in the wall in one of the bedrooms. Stained carpeting. Water spots on the ceiling. Not only were the client’s expectations not met, it reflects on you if you believed the description and did not preview the home before showing it.

Coaching the Seller when Completing Property Condition Disclosures: The client reads the property condition disclosure and decides to buy the home. However, upon receiving a home inspection, they find out that the roof had been damaged by hail and to fix the problem, the seller nailed the shingles back in place, leaving holes in the rafters. We all know the seller is the one completing the disclosure. However, the buyer’s agent ultimately discovers (because the seller confessed) that the listing agent coached the seller on how to answer some of the questions. Continue reading

Setting up Hack-Proof Passwords

Save PasswordsIt’s a sad state of affairs—but millions of passwords have been stolen as recently as last week!  Think Home Depot.

So, someone did a study on HOW we choose our passwords in the first place – and here’s what NOT TO DO:


  • Don’t use the same password across multiple websites.
  • Don’t use security questions that anyone can find out about you (e.g., hometown, pet’s name, birth or wedding date).
  • Don’t use “remember me” options on your computer if using a public Wi-Fi.
  • Don’t use common passwords like “123456” or “password.”

Here are some ways to keep your passwords secure:

  • Create longer passwords – It’s recommended that you use a minimum of 10 characters, including numbers and symbols.
  • Use a phrase, song or book title – If the combo of letters and number is difficult to remember, use something easier to recall. Book title: GoneWithTheWind. Song title: ChickenFried. Phrase: Iamawesome.
  • Store passwords in a secure place – A handwritten cheat sheet is okay, but don’t store them in a doc on your computer.
  • Use a Password Manager – You’ll find online services to store all your User Names and Passwords. They are encrypted and all you need is one master password to access all your other info.

Any other ideas?  Please enter in the comments below or email me directly and I’ll publish an up-to-date list.  Email:  jeff.baxter@fairwaymc.com