Travel Ideas for Realtors

 Realtor Travel Ideas
In our business, it is very tough to take a break. We don't need to sit in an office all day, but providing great customer service to our clients means we must be available for them when they need us. Below are the tips that I offer the Realtors that work in my office:
1. Make sure you are extremely organized, and review all of your listings to make sure that you're caught up on all of your files leading up to the day you take off.
2. Access your email via webmail. If you don't have one already, I recommend that you set up a Gmail account. Gmail has a very easy to use interface and it is a dream to use on a limited or spotty internet connection compared to others.
3. Call the hotel ahead of time to make sure you have a great internet connection. You can go so far as to ask them to go to and run a speed test. You'll likely be used to 3.0MB download speed or larger, so you'll want at least that on your holiday.  Just because a hotel has internet, doesn't mean that it is useable.
4. Book your hotel room as close to the Wifi Lobby as possible. You'll need to check your email frequently, and the easier it is for you to grab your computer, download your messages, and put your computer back in the safe in your room, the better.
5. Take a Belkin Skype Phone or download Skype to your iphone. When you're at your hotel, you can just stand in the lobby, and use your cell phone to make calls as you normally would via Skype. You can test these services on your home or office wifi.
6. Consider buying an iPhone or Blackberry Torch, a cell phone with at least a 5 Megapixel camera in it. As well as taking great photos on your trip, you can take photos of documents and email them, just as if you were using a scanner. I use DocScanner for the iphone, and it works great. It allows me to send the files in PDF format.
7. Pack lightly. Coordinate all of your clothes so that every shirt matches with every pair of pants. A friend of mine gave me this tip, and he says he brings black underwear, black undershirts, black socks, black belt, and black shoes. He matches everything from there, and says it really lightens his suitcase.
8. Hire an assistant for the time that you are gone. Find someone in the office who agrees to be on call for you 24 / 7. Chances are you'll need their help at 9p.m. back home and you may need them to make phone calls, send faxes, deliver documents, print out contracts, waivers, amendments, etc and meet clients to sign. You'll be surprised at how little you actually need this person, but how handy they are when they can help when you need them. I usually give them $100 before I leave, and settle up with them when I'm back if I've used over $100 of their time. You can offer to pay $20 to $40 per hour. Believe me, just knowing that they are there to help is worth the $100. If you are organized, you'll be surprised how little you need them.
9. Make sure you have all of your clients faxing you to your electronic fax ( or You can acquire a Calgary, Edmonton or Toll Free fax number. You have to change your business card, your website, your listing and purchase contracts, etc so that they reflect your new electronic fax number, but it will be well worth it.
10. Put your email address on your voicemail. My voice mail says "Hi, you have reached Bob Sheddy. I'm either with a client, or away from the phone. Please leave a message or email and I'll get back to you as soon as I am able. I've found about 25% of people prefer to email me, than leave me a long message. Leaving my address on my voicemail gives people permission to email me, which makes it very smooth to communicate with them when I'm away.
11. Sign up for Telus' visual voicemail. When you are away, you'll be able to easily view and forward any voicemails to your assistant for them to deal with. You can easily forward the message and say "Call him back and say Yes" or "Ask this person if we can meet on Monday". Your assistant can play the voice message, see the phone number,
understand who's calling and hear the tone of their voice.
11. Research your destination's Prepaid Cell Phones, International Sim Cards, International Calling Plans, Prepaid wireless aircards, etc. These options are becoming very affordable ways to stay in touch while you are away.
12. Last minute details before you go: Are all of your keys accessible (especially the ones not in a lockbox)? Is someone checking your SMS text messages or are you able to get them at your destination?
13. Your listing clients probably don't mind if you take off for a short holiday, as long as they know that you have everything taken care of and don't miss buyer's calls. Keeping organized is always key to running a successful real estate business, but if you aren't organized, an A-bomb will go off the minute your plane leaves the tarmac.
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Bob Sheddy

Bob Sheddy

Broker of Record
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