Monday, April 30, 2012

AQP Digital Board Was Fun Advertising

It's not much of a secret I enjoy exploring marketing and advertising opportunities. In doing so, I try to stay consistent with the brand our practice tries to project: polished, and sometimes clever.  That said, the marketing project in the above pics was just plain fun.

As fun as it was, the billboard on Garner's Ferry Rd. certainly created some buzz, but few know what it's all about. Some downtown Realtors thought Coldwell Banker, United, purchased the board, and some still ask about it (the message typeface is kinda small). Yesterday, at a morning birthday party, a great client of mine asked, "Franklin, what's up with that billboard?  If Amanda's 'the best,' why do I use you?"  HA! 

Here's the rub. As Amanda and I work tirelessly to produce our sales numbers, we weren't registered as a "team" by the corporate Coldwell Banker brass in New Jersey. Well, as I'm invited to sit on real estate panels, and receive production awards, Amanda wasn't receiving her proper due. To be clear, she doesn't care one thing about that stuff. Nevertheless, it didn't sit well with me. Actually, it was festering in my gut.

In short, when I learned we weren't registered as a team, I felt overly compelled to do something.  Thinking... brainstorming... thinking... BOOM!  Billboard = Spot On Perfect. 

The moment the idea hit, I called Lamar Advertising to secure a spot, and asked Amy to get the art going... QUICKLY. I was so adamant about the board hitting immediately (the same day as CB's Awards/Recognition breakfast), that Finley and I met the Lamar sales rep around 8PM in his Forest Hills front yard. Thanks to him, and perfect spec art from Amy, the board was up the next morning.

Now, I should've known better than to think Amanda would see her own billboard on her way home that night. Duh!, me. It took texts from her friends, and comments at that night's bunco group, for her to even know it was there. Worked out great, either way!

That's the story of the digital billboard on Garner's Ferry Rd. It's one of the most fun marketing efforts I've done to date. Moreover, however, I wanted her to know when she joined our practice at Coldwell Banker, that she made the right decision.

PS/Disclaimer:  The word "REALTOR" should be in all caps, as it's a trademarked logo.  I think it was changed after the live pic above was snapped.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bravo's "MDL" Is Best Real Estate TV

As I do what I do late night, there's just not a lot of great TV on after midnight. For instance, if you don't want to watch the same SportsCenter over and over, re-runs of Storage Wars, Pawn Man (or whatever it's called), and Wicked Tuna is about as good as it gets. That said, I'm aaaall about Wednesday night.

While "Modern Family" is awesome, the show I make SURE to watch, is BRAVO'S "Million Dollar Listing - New York." For a Realtor who loves his job, I flippin' love this show.

You may remember "MDL - LA", which I enjoyed just as well. I'm not sure what happened to the L.A. fellas, Josh, Madison, and Chad (the guy with the helmet hair, later replaced by another Josh)  but they were fun to watch, too. Rumor was, the Josh with the grandmother was stealing art from his high priced listings. Who knows... but I hope the LA dudes come back soon!

Fast forward to today's version. The NYC guys are more serious, and collectively have more of a competitive edge. It's interesting that all three of the NYC guys wear ties every day, while only one of the four in LA (the new Josh) messes with a knot on a daily basis.

While the LA Realtors seem pretty equal, the NY guys are on COMPLETELY different levels.  Frederik seems to be, far and away, the absolute killer of the three, while Michael is admittedly new to the industry. The soap actor/hand model, Ryan, is clawing to get to Fredrik's level. The gap seems to be pretty wide.

Frederik is a straight up real estate BEAST. So much so, IMO, that his style may work against him in our marketplace. Actually, I wanted to blast him a little in this post. Tonight, however, he humanized himself with scenes with his mom and dad, even giving his mom a $100,000 gift in front of millions of eyeballs. Pretty cool.

Anyway, it's pretty late and I need to wrap up. Just a tip... if you like real estate shows, but are bored by regular House Hunting stuff, the Million Dollar Listing series is much more intense and brings a more realistic snapshot of this business.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Big Action In King's Grant Right Now...

Just Ordered 4 New "SOLD" Signs
As we're well into 2012, Amanda and I are posting some pretty good numbers, and have a fine market presence in a lot of downtown Columbia neighborhoods. To name a few, Shandon, Rosewood, Forest Acres, and Druid Hills are FULL of "TeamF" signs, and we're proudly adding the coveted red letter "Sale Pending" and "SOLD" riders at a rapid clip. (I'll post the latest sales stats in a later post).

As sales are ramping up all over town, I can't help but type about what's going on in King's Grant.   As of Sunday afternoon, we'll have four "Pending Contracts" in this popular gated neighborhood. 24 W. Tombee, 35 W. Tombee, 18 Foot Point, and 30 Davant Place are currently looking forward to smooth closings. Not bad...

I'll need to check the details on this, but in 2011, I think we closed 10 real estate "sides" in King's Grant. To my knowledge, the next closest producers (there were two) boasted two sales each, respectfully. (REPEAT: 10 v 2). Fast forward to today, and you might understand why I'm so happy about the number of current contracts. 

In all, there are 18 KG homes presently for sale, eight of which are Pending Contract.

As you can tell, if there's anything going on in "KG," we pretty much know about it (secret houses, wink/wink). That said, if you or anyone you know might be interested in King's Grant, be sure to call or email or KG is only a few minutes from downtown Columbia, and a pleasure to show.

P.S.  My Blogger account completely changed its "posting" format tonight, and I'm trying to figure this all out. Please excuse any irregular "looks" or oddities!  

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sharp Home @Greenbriar Hits Market

Never Heard of "Greenbriar?" Well... Here Ya Go!
Located in Columbia's prestigious Greenbriar neighborhood, 5158 Hillside Lane is a sharp, all-brick, move-in ready, secret stunner!

At almost 3,000 polished sf, some features of Hillside Lane include shining hardwoods, smooth ceilings, detailed moldings, recessed lighting, new bathrooms, and is replete with well-appointed updates throughout. As you click through the photos, you'll quickly see this is a top-shelf listing.

Large entryways and a granite-filled kitchen, flanked by two living areas, provides the ideal "flow" for entertaining and everyday living. Further, the eat-in kitchen and den continue onto an awesome raised concrete patio, which overlooks a perfect, fully-fenced, lush backyard ready for supper clubs or parties. A huge sunken den/family room is ready for all the college football or movies one can watch.

Hillside Lane is an ultra-quiet street that, quite frankly, most Columbia natives have never traveled on or even know about. From every window's vantage point, 5158 Hillside Lane is surrounded by manor-like estates. In short, this house is nestled in one of Columbia's "best kept secrets."

If you read this blog often, or catch me writing about some of my listings, you'll notice I like descriptions such as "sharp, spotless, polished, stunner, and replete." Well, I'm tellin' you, not selling you, 5158 Hillside Lane is a sharp, spotless, polished stunner replete with all the goodies.

Offered at $489,000, 5158 Hillside Lane may be the best opportunity I can remember to move into such a "finished" home in this neighborhood. "Greenbriar" is full of $500,000 - $1,000,000 dwellings.

Greenbriar feeds into highly desirable schools, is 2 minutes to Trenholm Plaza (Starbucks, Fresh Market, Rosso, Cafe Caturra) and 5-10 minutes to anything Forest Acres or Downtown Columbia.

As you can feel from my description or see from the pics, this listing is a pleasure to show. If you or anyone you know would like to view this Greenbriar beauty, call or email or .

Tip: For larger pics... when you click the links above, click the picture instead of the arrows and a larger view will appear.

Thank you!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Magazine-Worthy Stunner @ $400s

Many of you know the other side of the gate/wall in the pic above. Here's a hint: it's one of the awesome access points to the lush backyard of a cool property in prestigious Heathwood. Hasn't come to you yet? Well click the gate, and get re-introduced to one of the most polished homes I've represented.

As you browse around the interior photographs, what I need you to pay special attention to is all that you get at this price point. For anyone looking in the "step it up a notch" range (the banks say that's $417,000 & up), 1536 Tanglewood is sure to be part of their downtown search.

Unpretentious "Tanglewood" features four bedrooms, four full baths, lots of living space, a premiere kitchen w/ "keeping area", an office/playroom, magazine-worthy everything, three patio areas (raised in the back), and an attached 2-car garage. I challenge anyone to find a finer home in Heathwood at this price level.

I'm confident you'll love what you see. This gorgeous home lives cleverly (double master baths, for example), and is replete with some of the finest appointments you will find.

If you or anyone you know would like to look at this Heathwood stunner, please call or email or

As you can imagine, this property is a pleasure to show, and is less than five minutes from wherever we'll be anywhere in downtown Columbia, SC.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Downtown Columbia's Transactions!!

Columbia's MLS Closings: March 16 - April 13, 2012
Good stuff on this list! Multiple closings in The Hamptons, King's Grant, Shandon, Forest Acres, and Rosewood, with some nice price points.

Have fun clicking!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Hot Corner @ Shandon Is For Sale!!

Cool Blossom St. @29205,... Is "Perfectly Shandon"
A few days ago we listed this 'Perfectly Shandon' home on Blossom St. If you'll click the link, you may appreciate the semi quotes in the first sentence. After all, I could easily brand 2711 Blossom as a bungalow, cottage, or Craftsman style home. It's so attractive though, I think we'd be good with all three, or a even a good hybrid description. Either way, given that "Shandon Proper" is a prideful architectural kaleidoscope, I think "Perfectly Shandon" fits quite nicely.

As you click the pics, you'll notice the charm of each room. For instance, take a gander at the dining room in the pic above. Complete with coal/masonry fireplace, storage bench, high ceilings, hardwoods, French doors, nautical style lighting, and loads of space, this one room is a nice snapshot of the rest of the home.

As cool as this 3/2 home is, the real star of 2711 Blossom St. is the LOCATION. Only a block or few from pretty much anything on Devine, being on the corner of Blossom St. and Woodrow St. is perfect for anyone that wants to live in the center of the 29205 universe.

Seriously, this corner is in the middle of everything. As you can see, the front porch says it all, as the owners watch and wave to all the walkers and bikers that Shandon is famous for. If you like action, 2711 Blossom is hard to beat.

If you or anyone you know might be interested in living in the middle of everything Shandon, call or email or . This house is easy to show, and ready to go.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Just An All Around Awesome Sunday!

Today was just awesome. Woke up to a cute little girl playing with whatever the Easter bunny brought her. Showed houses to different groups (and witnessed a familial, team effort mini inspection) from about 2:30-6ish, then watched the very end of The Masters while grilling up two monster Rib-eyes in primo perfect weather.

While all the above made for a lot of fun, what made today different was the 10:30-11:30 hour at the First Baptist Church in downtown Columbia. I want to just say, "Wow....That's all I got," but that would make for a pretty cruddy blog post.

This Sunday, Jennifer and I sat in the first balcony, which is provides a pretty impressive panoramic perspective of what's going on. I like to sit close, too, but the back of the balcony gives a view, respectively.

Here's what I'm getting at. At 38 years old, I may have witnessed the best hour of church service that I can remember. First of all, the FBC choir is second to none. REPEAT....this group is the BEST!! If you want to be "moved" on Sunday mornings, then come listen to this music program. They can absolutely blow your hair back.

The FBC choir is so dominating, Dr. Estep really has to be on his game. Today he surely was. I don't know if it was because I gulped a "5 Hour Energy Drink" before hand, or what, but Dr. Estep was totally engaging, and delivered a top shelf Easter message.

Pretty much every church has folks that like to leave the service before it's actually over, usually to avoid waiting in line at a local restaurant for lunch. You know the drill. Today was no different, at FBC. OOOOooo, those early lunchers don't know what they missed! The sanctuary boomed out such a tune from the downtown corner of Marion and whatever, it prolly made half the congregation well up. Not kidding. Tears everywhere.

As a disclaimer, I don't usually take my phone to church for fear I'll die of a mortificationism from a rogue ring. I'm not sure why I had it today, but I'm glad I did. The pic is a little fuzzy, and doesn't give the scene justice. That said, I was trying to hurry, as Jennifer was giving me the stink eye for trying to sneak a pic. Truth told, I wish I'd climbed to the 2nd balcony with my fish eye lens attachment. The building was almost to capacity, and this would have made for an awesome shot of the true impressive venue. Oh well...

What a perfect Easter Sunday. The older I get, and the older Finley gets, the more I enjoy and absorb this type of day.

On a side note, congratulations to Bubba Watson! I only got to watch about four holes total, but wow that was clutch from the pine straw!!!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Twilight Look @ KG Picked For Cover

Fun Evening Photo Shoot @Foot Point @King's Grant
Sometime in March I received an email from the President of CB-Carolina's Region, alerting me that 18 Foot Point will be the cover property of the inaugural edition of Coldwell Banker's national eBook. Sweet!

The only caveat was that I had to produce a, "High end, commercial, sleek, twilight, or night time shot." As Amy takes the best pics in the industry, we felt we needed to step it up a notch equipment wise for this particular project. With that, we searched and found a professional property photographer. Wednesday night, I left Finley's Easter egg hunt and shot over to KG to meet him in the street.

Congratulations to the Seller of this King's Grant beauty. Hopefully this opportunity will procure the perfect buyer for 18 Foot Point.

It's kinda awesome that one of our seller's homes will be "the face" of such a major marketing "push." #LoveIt

As this product will be distributed to tens of thousands of eyeballs, this is a premiere opportunity for 18 Foot Point to fetch major exposure. It's also a great piece for Amanda and I to use for future listing presentations. Win, Win.

Pretty Cool!!!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Perfect Long Weekend @Litchfield SC

This weekend was AWESOME as Jennifer, Finley, and I found ourselves at the coast for a quick beach trip with the Denemarks. The weather was just right, and the beaches of Litchfield, once again, provided a perfect backdrop for another vacation in the Palmetto State.

We strolled, napped, ran on the beach, dined at Chive Blossom, bowled, played video games, and just plain hung out. It's so fun to watch Finley keep up with her older god siblings, and it's just as awesome to watch Landon and Reid "watch out" for her, while they do what they do.

Uncharacteristically, we stayed until Monday afternoon. As much fun as we all had, WOW, did I learn a huge lesson. Never again will I be away from Columbia on a weekday without first alerting the folks that need to know. Being away Monday, I created an absolute firestorm of phone calls, emails, and texts, that sent Amanda and Amy into a tailspin, which affected the beach experience for everyone around. UGH!, I should've planned better, and now I know

Amanda and Amy reacted nicely, and I may have made up the slack by hustling late night, counter-offering, showing, and listing a Shandon property around 8:30 tonight. Reactions notwithstanding, I know better now, and will prepare accordingly looking forward.

This all said, we had a big time at Litchfield. The adults had fun, and the kids were in complete paradise, which I'm learning is what it's all about.

Now it's Tuesday, and we're in CRUSH IT mode for the rest of the week.....with a full head sunburn.