Safety first!

This isn’t only for REALTOR safety, it is safety rules for everyone to remember. I especially like the one about how to protect yourself from a dog attack! 

1. When showing properties

  • Meet the client at the office before showing them any properties.
  • Make a copy of their driver license and leave a copy at the office.
  • Let someone at home or at the office know which properties you will be showing and call them back every hour. If you don’t call them then they should try to call you. If you don’t answer then your contact should call the police and tell them the last property you were at and which ones you were scheduled to visit.
  • Don’t show properties to large groups of people (unless it’s a family with children).
  • Never let the client get behind you. Just motion for them to go to the next room while saying something like ‘‘and here we have the master bedroom.”
  • If they do get behind you then you can use the reflection in the windows and mirrors to watch what they are doing.
  • Keep your cell phone with you while showing the property.
  • Keep your cell phone charged up.
  • Make sure your voice mail box is not full so you can receive important messages at any time.
  • Even if your cell phone is turned off by your carrier for non-payment you should still be able to call 911 if needed.

2. Your car

  • Keep plenty of gas in the car.
  • Know your route.
  • Know how to read a map or use your GPS.
  • Keep a flashlight and tool kit in the trunk.
  • Keep your valuables locked in the trunk.
  • Make sure all of the tires (including the spare) are in good condition.
  • Always look at the surrounding area before leaving your vehicle.
  • Never let a stranger in your car. Just tell the client your insurance doesn’t allow clients to be in your car.
  • Never leave your garage remote control in plain sight. It’s too easy for a thief to break into the car and then use the remote to get into the house.
  • Never get in a car when a criminal tells you to do so. The only reason they tell you to do that is so they can take you somewhere else so they can do something bad to you.

3. Home

  • Keep smoke detectors in every main room (living, game, den) and in every bedroom. You should also have at least one on each floor and also in the garage.
  • Change the smoke detector batteries at the same time that you set your clocks forward and backward.
  • Also have a carbon monoxide detector if your property has gas.
  • Have an emergency escape route as well as a meeting area, such as a large tree in the neighbor’s front yard. Practice evacuating the house with every family member.
  • Make sure all locks are in proper working condition. Chain locks can be easily broken.
  • Deadbolts are the best kind.
  • Make sure all exterior lights are working.
  • Keep several flashlights handy. One in the kitchen, one in the bedroom, and one in the garage. Replace the batteries when you replace the ones in the smoke detectors.

4. Vacation

  • Tell someone where you are going and when you will be back. Also tell them the route you are taking and give them a picture of your vehicle as well as the license plate. If you change plans make sure to notify your contact.
  • Don’t stay in hotel rooms that are higher than the 3rd floor. Fire department areal ladders seldom reach higher than that, especially if the fire truck can’t park close to the building.
  • Check the hotel exits.
  • Once again, keep a flashlight with you.
  • Take all prescription medicines with you (and keep them in their original containers).
  • When traveling to foreign countries make sure you take your documents including your passport and visa.
  • Know the emergency contact number and location of the American Embassy. If the city you are visiting does not have an American Embassy then you should see if there is one from one of our Allies, such as Great Britain, Canada, Mexico, Australia, etc. They will often times help Americans in a time of crisis.

5. Personal

  • Take a self defense class
  • Take a first aid class. At the very least, everyone should know how to perform CPR, the Heimlich Maneuver, and basic blood loss control techniques.
  • If your clothes catch on fire, then stop, drop, and roll.
  • The best kinds of fire extinguishers are rated for Class A, B, and C fires. A is for paper and fabric fires. B is for gasoline and grease fires. C is for electrical fires. Anything less than an A, B, C fire extinguisher is inferior. Why? Because when something catches on fire you won’t have the time to think about what type of fire it is. A few fire extinguishers are rated for A, B, C, and D. Class D is for metal fires such as aluminum and magnesium. Those fires are pretty rare so you probably don’t need one rated for all 4 classes. Keep one in the car, one in the kitchen, and one in the garage.
  • Personal weapons are always a judgment call. If you choose to carry a gun, knife, mace, etc., then you should be familiar with how to use it. Never buy a weapon and then tuck it away for ‘just in case.’ Take a gun class, practice, and get familiar with it. And for goodness sakes, never point a gun at anyone unless you plan on shooting the person you are pointing it at.
  • If you encounter a dog that appears to be vicious try turning sideways. When facing a dog straight on the dog will think you are an attacker, which will make it angry. If you turn your back the dog will see that as an opportunity to attack. But if you turn sideways and look away from the dog it will sometimes make it confused. When that happens the dog may walk away. I tried this technique one time on a German Sheppard and it went back inside the house.




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Check out this Video!

I just made a video for one of the homes I am selling here in Houston! I will be doing this for all my sellers!  If you know of anyone that might be interested in this home or anyone selling their home and want the best marketing, give me a call!

Sylvia Soliz, 281-300-4887

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Fix It Yourself at Home!

Hello all! 

 I found some of these short videos that can help you save lots of money by fixing smaller things around the house by yourself! It could also help if you are trying to sell your home and need small adjustments. Leaky toilet? Check out the link below!

Home Maintenance 101: 7 Things Every Home Owner Should Know

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Save a Life

This was sent to me and don’t know if any of you have ever had to do CPR or use an AED but this is a great short video to prepare you in the event you ever had to while out and about.  Very very good video on how you can possibly save a life…

Sylvia Soliz

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RE: Networking…and Fun??

Turns out I didn’t quite make it out to JBlacks on their grand opening…. I recieved word that it was incredibly too packed and to possibly hold off for another day.  This has been the word since then…I’m guessing probably a place for more fun than networking though…will have to check it out another time !

-Sylvia Soliz

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Networking…and Fun??

A buzz in the city is the Grand Opening of JBlack’s today off Washington.  Sounds like it should be a good crowd for networking and maybe even to unwind after work.  I think I will check it out later this evening . Check back for my review of this new place!

-Sylvia Soliz

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Smart Free Business on Facebook

You’ve heard repeatedly how you need to be active on every established social network, as well as all the new ones coming out, but who has time?

To get the best bang for your time investment, establish a presence only on the most important social networks to your business. Stay focused on the types of participation that will help you achieve your objectives in the shortest amount of time.

The following best practices will help you get the biggest bang out of Facebook without spending a lot of time doing so.

Build a business and personal page. I think there is a place to use your personal profile for business while also using your fan page for business as well. Create a business page and learn how to set it up to get the most from the new design.

Change the settings on your personal profile to allow public subscribers. (Don’t worry, they can’t see anything you don’t make public.) I’ve found that I get a significant amount of traffic from these public subscribers. People use Facebook in different ways and this is like having two different options for exposure.

Promote with calls-to-action. Your goal is to increase the number of engaged fans coming to your page. To do this, ask people to like, share and comment on different posts. You don’t need to beg your audience, just use questions and subtle calls-to-action in your updates. For example: “Like this post if you agree!”

Focus on the Wall with content. Many people spend a lot of time creating pretty pages, apps and tabs on their Facebook page when most people never actually visit those pages. If fans see your content, it’s in their timelines; so spend 90 percent of your time posting content to your wall via status and image updates for a better return on your time investment.

Pick two times a day, perhaps in the morning and at the end of the day, and commit to posting several new items and engaging in conversations with those that comment. This is also a great time to comment on others’ pages.

Create interest lists. Facebook allows you to create lists of pages and group them any way you like. You can pick out a handful of related pages, competitive pages or just pages you find interesting and view all the activity on them in an organized manner. This makes commenting and liking on other pages a snap and can lead to more engagement on your page. Try to do this once a day.

Use images for status updates. Facebook is for entertainment. It’s not a hardcore business network and I doubt that it ever will be. If you want the opportunity to occasionally make an offer, you’ve got to spend the greatest amount of your time entertaining and engaging fans with interesting stuff.

People find images interesting—even if they have nothing to do with what your business sells. Facebook also finds images interesting and will likely show your update with images to more followers than text and third party plugin status updates.

Add the “Like” button to your online world. Put the Facebook “Like” button everywhere you interact. Put it on your Web pages in blog posts and in your e-mail newsletters and remind people to hit that button if they like something

Read your stats. Pay attention to your analytics or what Facebook calls Insights. This simple display of what’s going on with your Facebook page can give you a real view of what Facebook and your fans think is your best content. Play with different forms of content and ways to engage and you’ll start to learn how to get the greatest return for time spent

-John Jantsch is a marketing consultant, speaker and author of Duct Tape Marketing and The Referral Engine and the founder of the Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Networkn Facebook.

-Sylvia Soliz

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