Networking is work

1408732833382 300x300 Networking is workThursday evening I attended an MV Speaker Series Event which was sponsored by the  MV Chamber of Commerce, Vineyard Square Hotel and Sitka Creations. The series centers around empowering business professionals on the island, Thursday’s event hosted by Rose DeNaro, a business and life coach, focused on local networking and stressed its importance even in the “off season” here on the Vineyard.
As a young professional just starting out in real estate sales I welcome any and all input on networking and growing my business. It is easy to see that we can all grow complacent in this area of growing our business. Without a definite time frame for yourself or plan the ideas for networking can fall by the wayside. This was a great way to get myself back on track.
The speaker series costs $25 if you reserve your space ahead of time and $30 at the time of the event. If your business is a member of the Chamber of Commerce then the series is usually free. Aela Mass, Director of Member Services at the Chamber stated that there are 900 members. 900 businesses on the island of Martha’s Vineyard are members of the Chamber of Commerce here. It’s an extremely large member base and with that many businesses these events could be a potential networking goldmine. If you would like to find out more about these speaker events contact the Chamber of Commerce today to be kept in the loop.
Back to the event I recently attended…As is typical in any situation like this we went around the room and introduced ourselves. We said our name and our business. Rose mentioned afterward that how we introduce ourselves should be interesting. We should figure out a sentence or two to explain who we are so that when we walk away from the conversation the other person has a clear vision of who we are and our business. This gave me a lot to think about and it reminded me of our twitter culture. We are encouraged to be brief and concise in the information we provide. I like that idea. Being someone who tends to be overly wordy it’s challenging for me, however I find it necessary. I am currently trying to come up with my interesting introduction. I thought this was a great idea.

Some great tips I took away from this event were to consciously be aware of where I network. Rose suggests you have a strong contact group, a casual network, and a service network. She also stresses the importance of belonging to groups, boards, and committees. This involves you in the community, keeps you knowledgeable about your town and offers you networking opportunities. Rose encouraged us to get cards from others as opposed to only handed out our card. She mentioned that when you do collect a card and have a conversation with that person to follow up with them within at least 2 days. This helps keep you fresh in their mind and is considered smarter networking. Rose also spoke about SMART networking.  She explains this as having a Specific goal, making sure is Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and give yourself a Time frame to expect a networking result. Attend events, have your interesting introduction, a few questions to ask and talk to people you don’t currently know. It’s not networking if you talk to the same group every time. The average time spent networking is 5 hours a week. Be above average. Think of more ways to network and expand your sphere of influence.
I found this speaker series very helpful. It gave me ideas to run with and reminded me of the importance of this business tool. Networking is “work” as Rose stated in her talk and should be treated as such. I encourage others on the Vineyard to take advantage of this island resource. It’s a great way to get ideas to grow as an individual or a business and it offers the opportunity to meet other island residents working to grow their business as well.

Should you buy or rent?

newlogo lighthouse 300x110 Should you buy or rent? Owning a home is not for everyone. We all need shelter, however owning gives you the opportunity to earn some equity for the future. Here are some things to consider when trying to make the decision:

Owning                                                                  Vs.                                                 Renting

You build equity over time                                                            No ownership and less stability

You pay for repairs/ upgrading appliances                            Landlord covers repair/ appliance cost

Maybe more difficult to move/less flexible                    Possibility to move without owing anything

Tax incentives                                                                                  No financial/tax breaks for renting

Must have some $ for downpayment/                                       Minimal deposit to get into rental
closing costs (can be a gift)

Control over space: painting/home improvements                    Cannot make aesthetic changes

Year round rentals on Martha’s Vineyard are very hard to come by. If you have one you may want to hold onto to it. If you’ve lived in a city you may be used to moving every couple of years. Here it is a completely different story. Owning a home gives you more of a stable living situation. You don’t have to do the Vineyard shuffle and move from place to place with the changing seasons. It can be expensive to own a home and you will need some funds for a down payment and closing costs. However, in the long run the benefits outweigh the small hurdles in purchasing a home. If you have steady long -term employment its worth talking to a lender to see what you would qualify for. Maybe you need to plan for a year to get into a home, but then it’s yours and you can stop wasting money on rent. Do you need more convincing?

Numbers don’t lie:

Renting $2,500 per month for 5 years: $150,000 paid in rent. Money you are putting in someone else’s pocket. This is money that you could put towards earning equity in a home that you purchase.

If you would like to learn more about purchasing a home call us today. We are happy to provide you with information on home ownership. Knowledge is power.
Lighthouse Properties MV 508-627-7005.

The changes continue. All for the better.

quotes about change in life blogabove psqsrwke 300x192 The changes continue.  All for the better. There have been a lot of changes at the Lighthouse Properties Real Estate Company lately. If you’ve been keeping tabs on us you know that we recently moved into an office in Edgartown. 12 North Water Street to be exact. Leslie Floyd joined our group. Leslie owned Portfolio Real Estate prior to joining the Lighthouse team. She brings with her a wealth of knowledge and experience.

Then about a week ago all of us took a trip off island and took a days long class to become Realtors ®.

You may say to yourself; what is the difference between a real estate agent and a Realtor or you may have thought we were already Reators.   Well, not all real estate agents are Realtors.  As Realtors we are expected to adhere to a certain code of ethics. Now, most real estate agents adhere to these practices as well. I mean really they are just good business practice, if you plan on being in business for any length of time. The difference is that as a Realtor you are held responsible for your actions by the board of Realtors. This board would hear any disciplinary action that may arise with a Realtor.  As Realtor’s we are to live by the credo “do unto others as you would have done to you”.  Now, this not new to any of us on the Lighthouse team. I’ve been here a short period of time and one thing is obvious; these are all stand up business professionals.

The other benefit of us joining the ranks of Realtor is that we now also have access to the Cape and Islands MLS system, which means more exposure when you place your home for sale with Lighthouse Properties.  As you may or may not know we use LINK here on Martha’s Vineyard. LINK only has properties on the Vineyard and to the best of my knowledge is really only used by agents who live and work here. Becoming Realtors has opened up our network and resources.

This is a benefit to you. Our clients. It allows us to better service your needs.
They say that change is good and I for one would have to agree. From change comes growth and experience to assist in your future endeavors. All of the changes that Lighthouse Properties has gone through in the past few weeks has given us the opportunity to better service our clients.
If you haven’t yet done so, stop by our office and say hello. We are thrilled to be in downtown Edgartown and look forward to catching up with you soon.

Home Buyer Seminar Success!!

I would like to thank Tammy King, of the Cape Cod 5 Savings Bank for hosting the homebuyer seminar this week.  Tuesday, October 7th Tammy and I held an informative 1.5 hour seminar that covered information on today’s real estate market, shopping for a home, choosing and working with a Realtor, contract negotiation, budgeting, finances and mortgage loans.  We had a small group and held a very informal, but informative meeting.  I feel knowledge is power especially in the case of buying a home.  After all this is the most expensive purchase many of us will ever make. Its important to understand how the process works.  Its so much more involved then just picking a house you like.  Shopping for a house can be fun or it can be very stressful. I believe being prepared makes it more fun.  I also think its difficult to know which questions to ask or even how to know where to start.

In the group from Tuesday’s seminar there were people who are working on getting qualified for a loan, others who haven’t even started the process, and some that are looking, but unsure of what to do next.  It was a good mix, with some great questions and feedback.  This group is getting closer to their dream of home ownership.   We will also be holding another seminar later in the year and will being advertising for that.  If you are interested in a seminar or interested in any other real estate information please don’t hesitate to contact me There are some great listings in the $300,000 to $600,000 range, perfect for first time homebuyers!!

Its a great time to buy!


Featured Listing: Llewellyn Way, Edgartown

71979297 300x199 Featured Listing: Llewellyn Way, EdgartownJust minutes from downtown Edgartown and along a winding country road, Llewellyn Way carves a precious path between the lush growing fields of Morning Glory Farm. Those in the know covet this location for its proximity to the Morning Glory Farm stand. ‘Farm stand’ does not do justice to the abundance of prepared gourmet goodies, truly local produce, magnificent baked goods and fabulous morning coffee and confections. Quiet and comfortable style, coupled with a feeling of warmth and home greets one upon entering. Open and welcoming, the newly and lovingly renovated Chef’s kitchen gives the first sense that this is a home and not just a house. The sweeping openness of the first level speaks to a time well spent with family and friends. Rich in wood, from the gleaming hardwood floors to the Scandinavian style wood ceilings, it is apparent this home is well built and well maintained with an unsurpassed pride of ownership. The recently built two car garage boasts mahogany doors and additional living and sleeping area with a full bath. The deck, patio and hot tub offer additional outdoor living and dining space. Open to any imagination, there is boundless opportunity to create one’s own space. Recently connected, seven bedrooms are possible on this beautifully manicured and landscaped, half-acre lot. Expand, re-create, modify’all options are available. Live inside or outside and enjoy all this island has to offer. Call Leslie Floyd today for more information on this beautiful home 508-627-7005.  Or stop by our office at 12 North Water Street in Edgartown.  cf294ec6 300x199 Featured Listing: Llewellyn Way, Edgartown

Joining Forces- A little about the great new talent at Lighthouse Properties

Leslie1 239x300 Joining Forces  A little about the great new talent at Lighthouse Properties

Leslie Floyd

Leslie, a long time Island resident, has deep roots on Martha’s Vineyard. A Pease family descendant, she spent her summers on her family’s Tom’s Neck Farm on Chappaquiddick, settling in Edgartown in 2004. She has always considered the Vineyard, and especially Chappy, her “home” even when living away.

Leslie has held a real estate license in Massachusetts for 24 years becoming a Broker in October of 2006. Her experience includes high-end Real Estate sales in the Metro Boston Area and on the Vineyard. Harnessing her entrepreneurial spirit and contagious enthusiasm for her Island home, Leslie loves to serve as an “ambassador” to this special place.

She brings with her a profound love of the island and all it has to offer. Her interests lie in protecting the Island’s heritage. She is especially interested in supporting local and sustainable agriculture. In her free time she forages for wild foods, cooks for family and friends, serves on several non profit Boards, and spends time with her dog Schooner.

It is not just Real Estate, it is Hospitality!

FREE Home Buyer Seminar

newlogo lighthouse 300x110 FREE Home Buyer Seminar

Lighthouse Properties is teaming up with Cape Cod 5 to provide a FREE Home Buyer Seminar Tuesday, October 7. The seminar will take place from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the YMCA of Martha’s Vineyard.

Hear from industry insiders regarding:

**Today’s Real Estate Market
**Shopping for a Home
**Choosing and Working with a Realtor
**Contract Negotiation
**Special Loan Programs
** Mortgage Application and Closing Process

Food and refreshments will be served.

To Register for this FREE (no obligation) seminar please email or call 508-560-2923 for more information.

This is a great opportunity for anyone looking to purchase a home. If you want to find out the steps to take to reach your goal and have a better understanding of the process this is an excellent resource for you.

Change is Great!

For several years now the Lighthouse Properties team has operated out of Lisa Stewart, the Principal Broker’s home office.  This has given Lisa the ability to work 24/7 to say the least and while we know that won’t change other things have.  The company is growing in size with the addition of a new agent, Sheylah Callen, in January of this year and now the addition of broker, Lesley Floyd of Portfolio Real Estate.  Lighthouse Properties will be moving into 12 North Water Street on October 1st.  This move is exciting for the entire office.  It will give us more direct access to clients and with the growth of the company it is a much needed addition.

Lisa and Lesley combine over 25 years of real estate experience and knowledge.  No doubt you are familiar with their team comprised of Ashley Spinney, Trish Lyman, Rhea Cobban, and Sheylah Callen.  In addition to offering exceptional customer service to their clients, several of the team members also serve on local boards and all actively volunteer with various non-profit organizations here on the island.

We look forward to seeing you soon on the streets of Edgartown or better yet stop by our new office to say hello!

Beautiful Vineyard Haven Estate

Built in the Arts and Crafts style in 1908, this sprawling estate was home to three different town doctors, who ran their family practices here until the late 1980′s. Renovated and converted to a Bed and Breakfast in 1989, this stately residence features 3 fireplaces, 8 bedrooms, 8 1/2 baths and a commercial kitchen. Set high on a hill with partial views of Vineyard Haven Harbor, this nearly 2 acre property boasts fabulous grounds, gorgeous trees and perennial gardens, reminiscent of an old English Manor. Subdividable into up to four parcels. Contact us today for more information or to schedule a showing! 508-693-6626

Falling for Color: Tips to help brighten your home for the holidays.

Fall is here and with holidays around the corner it’s a great time to brighten up your home with some splashes of color. I’ve put together a little list with suggestions to help prepare your home for cozy days and family parties. Impress your guests and add some color as you prepare your home with these helpful tips:

1. Clean up the yard: Last year we hired a landscaper to come and clean up our leaves. It was the best money spent. It saved us time and really they did a much more thorough job than we ever could. We will do it again in a heartbeat. The yard looked great! I highly recommend this tip.

2. Paint the front door: A pop of color can change the whole look of your home. It brightens the exterior and evokes a cheery feeling for whoever enters. Try burnt orange, brick red, slate blue, emerald green or radiant orchid.

3. Add some bright colored rugs: Modern bright colored rugs can really bring a room together and make it feel cozy and inviting. I suggest placing a large rug under your dining room table, or in your bedroom. Place smaller throw rugs in the kitchen and at the entrances to your home. Use the small throw rugs to add some punches of color to those spaces.

4. Change up your window treatments: Fun colorful printed curtains can add some fall spice to your home décor. Try pale yellow, pumpkin orange and deep crimson, which mirror the changing leaves. Not only do these colors match the current outside color scheme they bring warmth and comfort into your home.

5. Add some fall foliage: Mums on the front steps will always remind me of fall. They are hardy and add some nice color when the tree leaves are gone. Or bring the fall foliage indoors with some nice centerpieces for the dining room and smaller flower arrangements in the living room or bedroom. This will give your home some beautiful color and sweet fragrance.

These are some fun ideas to prepare your home for the holidays, but remember the best thing is to fill your home with the people you love and be thankful everyday for each and every one of them.