Friday, March 30, 2018

Another Real Estate Instructor Career Killed in Infancy

     Mike McCallister, the current national president of the Real Estate Educator's Association talked to us at the North Carolina Real Estate Educator's spring conference in Cary, North Carolina yesterday.  He told us that we need to bring some young, energetic, new instructors into the industry.

     In North Carolina, when you apply for a real estate instructor license, an instructor license candidate is required by the North Carolina Real Estate Commission to submit a 50 minute digital video recording of his teaching style to be evaluated by the staff of the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.  If the staff does not like your video, you don't get a instructor license.  Here is link to explain my own lengthy, arduous, expensive, frustrating process as an old, experienced, veteran instructor to get my first real estate instructor license in North Carolina.  WHAT AN ORDEAL!

     During lunch, just before Mike spoke, I ran into a school director that I had met last year at the NCREEA fall conference last October.  I asked her where was her young protege.  She told me that her young protege had turned in two videos to the staff of the North Carolina Real Estate Commission while she had her six month temporary license was in force.  Both videos were rejected by the staff of the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.  She gave up.
We need young, new real estate instructors in our industry

     WHAT A SHAME!  What a shame that her ability to get a real estate instructor license, based on whether or not the staff of the N.C.R.E.C. likes her video, stopped a career.  If I had the experience in 1978 in Florida when I got my first real estate instructor permit that I had in 2016 in North Carolina, I would haven given up.  I would have had to give up because I didn't have another $150 to pay for another expert video technician to shoot another video.  I could not even have afforded another sim card in those days.  I certainly could not have afforded an expert trainer to teach me how to teach the way someone else thinks is a good way to teach.

     I am not certain but I think that North Carolina is the only state in America that requires a video evaluation by the regulators to get a real estate instructor's license.  I appeared in person in December of 2016 along with several other instructors to beseech the N.C.R.E.C. to eliminate this unnecessary video evaluation hazing process.

     My hope is that other instructors will let the N.C.R.E.C. know that we do not need the regulators to tell us if an instructor is good or no good.  A school director can do that.  It would make sense for a school director to watch a fifty minute video of a job applicant or better yet sit in a classroom with that job applicant.  If that applicant explains things wrongly or has unacceptable poor grammar or offends several students, that school director would probably not hire that  instructor even if they do have a license.  That makes sense.  It does not make sense for the regulators to tell that poor instructor that he is not worthy to hold a real estate instructor license.

     At the recent instructor conference in Cary, Chris Barnett asked us to post some things on Facebook that other instructors would be interested in.  Please get interested in this.  Send an email to the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.   Let them know that you think the video evaluation process is unnecessary at least and a career killer at worst.

     If you can not take time to write a letter to the N.C.R.E.C. ,   please leave a comment here.  If you disagree with me, let us know.  Maybe there is something that I just do not understand.

     Hazing continues because many people have an attitude that I paid my price, the new guy needs to go through the same process.  Please do not take that attitude.  Some young instructor's career may be in jeopardy.  

Thursday, March 22, 2018

North Carolina Real Estate Exam Pass Fail Statistics for February 2018

     The North Carolina Real Estate Commission released the pass fail statistics for February 2018 today.

     In February, three hundred and eighty nine real estate license applicants paid $164 to attempt the North Carolina real estate exam for the first time.  The North Carolina real estate exam is 140 questions.  One hundred of the questions are the national portion.  Forty of the questions are the North Carolina portion.  If you don't answer 72 of the 100  questions on the national portion and 29 of the 40 questions on the state portion correctly, you will fail.  You do not want to go back.  You want to pass the first time.  In February, two hundred and twenty seven of the test takers passed both portions.  One hundred and sixty one of these real estate license applicants will be paying $164 to try again.  That is a 58% pass rate.  This North Carolina real estate test is no joke.  It is tough.

     One hundred and sixty four dollars is considered a lot of money at my house.

     I can understand how a real estate test applicant might fail the first time.  Maybe their real estate instructor did not tell them that the North Carolina real estate exam is TOUGH.  Maybe no one told them about the "tricky" questions on the North Carolina real estate exam.   Read this:

     Maybe no one told him about my practice test at .  My practice test will tell you if you are ready for the North Carolina real estate exam.  My practice test also has a video
First Real Estate School in Hendersonville
explanation of the answers.  It is worth the ten bucks.  If you are on a tight budget, I have a free test at   If you are on a really tight budget, study like you intend to make 100% on the North Carolina real estate test.  It costs $164 every time you take it.

     Maybe no one told those repeat test takers about my FREE You Tube videos that show you how to do any math that you may encounter on the North Carolina real estate exam.  The exam is ten per cent math.  If you can not amortize a mortgage when given the balance and interest rate and monthly payment factor, when would be a good time to learn?  You could learn this before you go take the state exam.  You could wait until after you have done your $164 practice run and you are absolutely certain that it is one of the questions on the test.  If you can not determine how much is the before tax cash flow on a ten unit building given vacancy rate and expenses and debt service and rent, when would be a good time to learn?  Watch one.  There are thirty.  If you fail by one point, it costs $164 to take the test again.

     Maybe no one told these 161 unsuccessful test takers that staying in touch with your classmates in a very good idea.

     What about those repeat test takers?  How did they do last month?  In February, one hundred and fifty seven real estate license applicants paid the North Carolina Real Estate Commission $164 to try the comprehensive test again.  Twenty seven of them passed.  That is a 17% pass rate.  Forty eight repeat test takers paid $164 to take only the national portion of the exam again. Twenty six of them passed.  That is 54%.  Twenty two of those repeaters will be repeaters again.   Two hundred and ten repeaters paid $164 to take the North Carolina only portion of the exam.  One hundred and twenty one passed.  That is a 58% pass rate.

     I can understand how a first time test taker could underestimate the North Carolina real estate exam, especially if that first timer had not been warned by his real estate instructor or by reading an article such as this.  I can understand the first timer.  How can anyone that is paying $164 to try again, underestimate the North Carolina real estate exam?  A repeater has been there.  A repeat test taker has already seen the questions.  Questions like, " Which of the following groups are protected by the Fair Housing Act?"  Please put the correct answer in the comments.

A. race, color, religion. gender, national origin, familial status, handicap
B. race, color, religion, sex, creed, national origin, familial status
C. race, religion, sexual orientation,  color, national origin, familial status, handicap
D.  race, color, religion, age, sex, martial status, handicap

     How can a repeat test taker see that question on their own North Carolina real estate exam and return for another $164 chance without looking up the answer in the book or calling a classmate or calling their instructor to be certain that if I get that one again, I will be ready?  If you have not read my article, "What To Do When You Fail The North Carolina Real Estate Exam in Asheville" .  Here is a link .  If you are soon taking the North Carolina real estate exam, read it.

     There is so much help on the internet.  There is no excuse for failing the North Carolina real estate exam twice.  You can not blame your school or your instructor, or spouse, or boss, or the N.C.R.E.C.

     I offer my students books and CDs and practice tests and videos and good luck charms.  Most of my students do not take advantage of even the free stuff.  I suggest to my students that they share study aids that they discover on the internet with their classmates.  I suggest to all of my students that they get contact info from all of their classmates and stay in touch.. There is so many ways that making passing a group effort is a very good thing.  Several students can get together and buy some expensive study aid and split the cost or even hire a tutor and split the cost several  ways.  Find out when your class mate is taking the state exam.  Call him up and congratulate him on passing.  OH how embarrassing! He did not pass.  You can invite him to your study group that is meeting tomorrow night.  I think their presence would be mutually beneficial to everyone.

     Quit studying like you want to baaaaarely pass the exam.  Start studying like you intend to get your picture put on the cover of the North Carolina Real Estate Commission's "Bulletin"  when you make 100% on the state exam.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Is Now A Good Time To Invest In Income Producing Real Estate???

     A simple yes is the best answer to that question.  You can not go back in history twenty years and buy your first property, an average house in Hendersonville, North Carolina at yesterday's price.  You can wait for the future.  History has proven that the price real estate tends to go up, not down.

     If you could go back in history and buy an average house in 1998 in Hendersonville, the price would be about $130,000.  Today in 2018, it would be about $230,000.  If you could go back in history and buy a average house for $130,000, would you?

     If you did, you would have $100,000 in equity today caused by appreciation.  Today, you would have paid down the balance of your six per cent mortgage down, creating another $46000 in equity.  Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Tenant for paying your rent all these years.  You would have probably raised the rent several times so that this average house has created a very positive, comfortable  cash flow for you today.  Your only regret would be that you did not buy ten average houses in 1998.  You only bought one.  All that depreciation that you wrote off you taxes is gravy. 
The more you learn, the more you earn. A diploma is a beginning. 

     Yes, today is a great time to buy an investment rental property.  You do not have to be Mr. Prognosticator to know that inflation is going to happen.  Real estate owners love inflation.  Saving account owners are not crazy about inflation.

     You might say to yourself."  If I went back to 1998, I did not have any spare money to buy real estate."   Education is the solution to that problem.  There are lots of ways to finance real estate.  If a person decided to allocate their available resources, that person could figure a way to finance buying a house or an apartment building.  Here is a video to help explain.     

     If you are interested in a comfortable retirement, buy income producing investment  property today.  Twenty years from now, you will be glad that you did.  If you are a Realtor that really understands income property, leave a comment with a link to your website.   

     If you are near Hendersonville and you want to get a real estate license, contact me at .

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Ask Your Real Estate Instructor If You Have A Question

     On my practice test for the North Carolina real estate exam at , I have some moderately difficult questions.  Frequently, participants will leave a comment and question my answer.  For instance, yesterday, I received a comment concerning a question.  The student's comment was, " Question 36 asks which is the best deed for the grantor?  You said the answer is quit claim deed.  Our real estate instructor told us that the best deed is is the general warranty deed.  Which is correct?  My North Carolina real estate exam is tomorrow.  Please reply promptly." 

     I did not reply promptly.  This comment was two days old before I replied.  I sent the student an email and explained that the question asked which deed is best for the GRANTOR, not the grantee.  A quit claim imposes no liability on the grantor.  Therefore a quit claim deed is best for the grantor.

     She replied, "Thanks for your reply.  I passed my North Carolina real estate test yesterday.  Your practice test was a big help.".  That was a happy ending.
If you can't reach your instructor, call a classmate

     The reason I am writing this article is to suggest that, as well as contacting me via comments, that student should have also contacted her real estate instructor and asked her for help.

     Most real estate instructors have time for a email or phone call.  You should have your instructor's contact information written in your real estate textbook.

     When you call your instructor, be certain that you have the question EXACTLY and the choices.  You have paid your tuition.  Ask for help.

     If you are reluctant to call your instructor, call a classmate.  Call that lady that raises her hand every time that the teacher asks a question.  If you do not have her contact info, please read my previous article, " "

     If you are reluctant to call your classmate, get over it.  Calling strangers and casual acquaintances is an essential skill to success selling real estate.  Your classmate will welcome your call .   I am certain.

     Many of my classes form a Facebook group.  Ask there.  Your classmates will appreciate it.

     Get help before you go take the North Carolina real estate exam.  It costs $164 to take it again.  The pass rate last month was sixty one per cent.  It costs $164 to take the North Carolina real estate exam again.  If you are soon taking the North Carolina real estate exam, try my practice test at

     If you need to get your North Carolina real estate license, join us at First Real Estate School in Hendersonville.  for your basic real estate course.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

If I Fail The North Carolina Real Estate Exam, Is It My Instructor's Fault

     One of my pre license real estate students called me today to tell me that he had failed the state portion of the North Carolina real estate exam for the fourth time.  It costs $164 every time that you take that exam.

     I asked him, "What was the first thing you did  after leaving the exam site with a failure notice in your hand?".  " I don't remember.", he replied.  " What did I recommend that you do before you crank up your car if you leave the exam with a failure notice ?", I asked.  He told me," I can not remember you telling us anything to do.".

     Anyone that has sat in my real estate classroom for seventy five hours has been told what to do when you fail the North Carolina real estate exam. Anyone that can not remember this probably was not listening in class.  Do not sit in class and not listen.  You have taken time away from your family to attend class.  Listen and take notes. 
Pass your North Carolina real estate exam the first time.

     What does Ron climer want you to do when you fail the North Carolina real estate exam?  What does Ron Climer want you to do if you fail before you start your car in the parking lot of the test center?   Ron Climer wants you to leave a recorder or writing pad on the seat of the car before you go in the test center.  If you come out with a failure notice in your hand, start talking to that recorder or writing down every question that you saw that you did not know the answer to.

     Tell yourself what you did not know.  You don't have to remember the whole question.  Just write down," What is the Machinery Act?".  "When can we close without using a TRID closing statement?" , " What does T.R.I.D. stand for?"  "How many members of the N.C.R.E.C. must be real estate brokers?"   If you can not remember, at least, half of the questions that were on your real estate test ten minutes later, no wonder you are having problems.

     When you go back to take the real estate exam again at $164 per chance, you better know the answer to the ones that you did not know the answer to last time.  You will see them again.  Here is a tip.   Read this article.

     Have you read the "Comments"?   Have you read the "Comments"?  Have you read the "Comments"?  I hope you know what the "Comments" are.  In the ninth edition of Dearborn's textbook, "Modern Real Estate Practice in North Carolina"  the "Comments" are on page 614 through 637.  It is Appendix A.  It is practically an outline of the real estate exam.  If you want to know what is on the state portion of the test, read the "Comments".  Here is  a video to watch if you want more detail. 

     If you fail the North Carolina real estate exam, do not blame your instructor.  Do not blame the N.C.R.E.C.   Do not blame the AMP.  Even if it is your instructor's fault or the N,C.R.E.C. 's fault or AMP;s fault, who is effected most by your failure?   You are.  You are the one that has to pay $164 to take the test again. You are the one that has to keep studying.  You are the one that has to delay your career change until you solve this problem.

     Turn off the T.V.   Sell your Playstation.  Study like you want to make 100% on the exam.  Forget about barely passing.  Study like you want to make a 100% so you can see your picture on the front of the North Carolina Real Estate Commission's "Bulletin".

     If you want to pass, do what your instructor suggests.  Do most students do this?

     When computerized testing was new, I was teaching real estate classes in Florida.  I started telling my students that if they would bring a small box of chocolates to give to the test monitor and ask the monitor to give them the "easy" test , the monitor would give them the "easy" test.

     I am not sure if this is true in North Carolina.  I know this.  When someone calls me and tells me that they failed, my first question is," Did you take the chocolates?".  The answer is always no.  Spend three bucks and take the chocolates. 

     If you think you are ready for the North Carolina real estate exam, take my practice test at   .   Take my practice exam over and over until you are making a 98%.   Watch the videos that explain the answers.

     If you can not amortize a mortgage, if you can not compute % of profit, if you can not compute square feet of a house with a bay window, if you can not compute a seller's proceeds at closing, if you can not compute how much a buyer brings to closing, if you can not determine value of a income producing property given appropriate capitalization rate and NOI , If you can not pro rate taxes and HOA fees, if you can not compute excise taxes, you need to watch my free You Tube videos that show you how to do the math that is on the North Carolina real estate exam.  You can't just hope that you won't get a question asking you to compute the interest rate when given the time and principal and interest paid of a loan.  It cost $164 to take the test again.  Here is a link to one of thirty videos that I posted  just to help you pass the first time. 

     Between now and your exam date, if you get the urge to relax and watch TV, watch one of these thirty videos instead.  Invite a couple of your classmates over to watch with you.  Stay in touch with your classmates.

     One last thing!   Go to the bank and get eight twenty dollar bills and four ones.  Tell your family that if you pass the exam the first time like 57% of the people do, we are taking this $164 out to dinner.  Here is a link to last month's pass fail statistics. 

     Get your family's support.  Let them know that this is not easy.  One hundred and sixty four dollars is a lot of money at my house.  Do not underestimate the North Carolina real estate exam.  Please do not take any comfort in that barely  passing grade that you got at real estate school.

     If you are anywhere near Hendersonville and you want to get a real estate license, contact First Real Estate School at or 828 440 1064.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Are You Productive or Active?

     It is so easy to confuse activity for productivity.  To remove the confusion for you, let me  make it clear.  Productivity is measured by results.  I suppose that you could measure activity by the hour. 

     In real estate sales, almost all of us are paid by results, commission.  It is a common practice in America for people to be paid for activity, (hourly wage).

     When a person leaves an hourly wage job for a results oriented job, it can be confusing.  Just because you are doing something does not mean that you are doing something that is productive. 

     I remember when I was sixteen years old.  I had a job working in a drug store.  The assistant manager used to tell me to "look busy".  He would certainly tell me that when the Big Boss came over from the other store.  I was constantly dusting the shelves.  I was being paid by the hour. 

First Real Estate School in Hendersonville can change your life
     Sometimes, commission only salespeople like to look busy.  They engage in low rejection, low productive activities.  They do things like clean their desk or check their emails or post non sense on Facebook.  The problem with highly productive activity is that it almost always involves rejection. 

     Calling today's expired listings would certainly be an example of this.  Today, in your M.L.S. , several listings expired in the Multiple Listing Service.  Seventy per cent of them will list with a Realtor that call or stops by and offers his services.  You can't call them because you are too busy __fill in the blank ______________________________  or some other non productive activity that will not turn into a listing or a commission.  If you don't know how to call expired listings, watch this video 

     There has been no research to prove that the Realtor with the cleanest desk makes the most money. 

     Here is the test.  Is what you are doing going to add to your income?  When?  Is there something else that you could be doing that would add to your income better? 

     Start spending more of your time on productive activities instead of just activities.  Your most valuable time is the time that you spend face to face with a real qualified, bonafide, verified prospect.  Ask yourself,"Is this activity leading me to a face to face meeting with a prospect?".  If the answer is yes, keep doing what you are doing.  If the answer is no, stop doing what you are doing and start doing something that will lead you to a prospect. 

     If you are being paid for activity, you are probably underpaid.  Join me at First Real Estate School in Hendersonville, North Carolina.   Start being paid for productivity.  You will like the results.  Call a prospect today. 

Friday, March 9, 2018

How To Find A Good Salesman In Any Field

     This news will probably shock most of my readers.  It is true.  Really good salespeople have more customers than they have time to deal with. 

     Think about it.  Here is a really good salesperson selling widgets.  He has a few years experience.  He has a mountain of product knowledge.  He is polite.  He is prompt.  He returns 100% of his phone calls promptly.  He is honest.  He has a great sense of humor.  He is the kind of salesperson that you would want to do business with. 

     He is so different from that salesperson you bought your last wadget from.  He was late for his appointment with you.  He talked all the time.  He rarely returned your phone call promptly.  You were in doubt about his honesty. 

     Here is a little something that you may not know.  Most really good salespeople "size up" a customer when they first meet them.   They do this by asking questions.  They quickly determine the customers needs and financial ability.  Here is a link if you do not understand how critically important this is to the customer and the salesperson. 

     If a good salesperson determines that you are not ready, willing and able to buy, he will say good bye.  This salesperson is not being rude or mean.  He is not mad.  He just wants to to get away from someone that is not ready to buy so he can get together with someone that is ready to buy.  Time is finite. 

     What does that mean to you, Mr. Customer?  It means that you need to let your salesperson know that you are ready, willing and able to buy now.  You will get better treatment from salespeople. 

     For reasons that I can not understand, many buyers want to conceal their buying urgency and ability from a salesperson.  For instance, You notice that your transmission is starting to slip in your ten year old car.  Then, your air conditioner stops working.  It is time to buy a new car.

     You and your spouse are off to the car dealer.  You meet the car salesperson.  He says," Hello,are you folks here to buy a car?".  "Oh No, we are just here to look.", you reply.  What is with the vague ambiguous answer?  Tell him the truth.  "Yes, we are here to buy a car and we hope to drive it home today. We have $5000 and our old car as a down payment.  We would be delighted to talk with your finance person".  Isn't that a better answer?   It is the truth.  That is the best answer.  That salesperson will treat you differently. 
First Real Estate School in Hendersonville, start a new career.  

     If you lie to your salesperson, she only has incorrect information from which to make a decision.  If she is a busy, knowledgeable, motivated, polite, prompt, honest, salesperson , she will say good bye to Mr. and Mrs. Looker so she will be available to spend time with Mr. and Mrs. Ready Willing and Able.  Can you blame her?  You told her you were here to look.  You did not tell her you were here to buy.  My point is: Tell your salesperson that you are here to buy.  If you don't, don't be mad when you are treated like second class citizens, lookers. 

     Have you noticed that most really good salespeople are polite and pleasant?  You should be polite and pleasant.  A good salesperson with plenty of customers will quickly say good bye to rude, obnoxious customers. 

     Do not ask your salesperson to guess about your financial ability.  There is no shame in requiring financing to buy a $100,000 airplane.  If a good salesperson is in doubt about your financial ability, he will soon say good bye.  Do not expect extraordinary performance from a salesperson that is in doubt about your financial ability to buy. 

     If you want to meet an extraordinary salesperson, be an extraordinary customer. 

     Let the salesperson know that you are ready to buy.  Let the salesperson know that you can make a decision.  Let the salesperson know that you have the financial ability.  If you do these things, you will find yourself dealing with better salespeople. 

      If you have questions, leave me a comment here.  If you have customers that are vague and ambiguous with their answers, send them a link to this article.  If you are interested in becoming a real estate salesperson in Hendersonville, North Carolina, contact  me at

Friday, March 2, 2018

Owner Financing, An Old Idea That Works in 2018

     Yesterday, we listed a lakefront lot near Hendersonville, NorthCarolina.  This five acre lot is a good buy at $99,900.  The trouble is getting financing.  Banks are not too keen on loaning money secured by vacant lots.

      The good news is that I asked the owner of this lot if she would finance it for a buyer.  She said,"Certainly".

     If you are a buyer, there is no better way to finance your real estate purchase than to have the seller hold the mortgage for you.

     Instead of going to the bank and giving them your life history and begging them to loan you the money, just make your offer on the $100,000 vacant lot.  Make your offer with you, the buyer, putting $25000 down and asking the seller to let you pay the $75,000 balance over a ten or fifteen or twenty year period of time.  Why would the seller say no to that?  The seller would probably want the buyer to pay interest and monthly payments. Of course!
Owner financing makes selling faster.  You will love the interest.  

Usually the only reason that the seller would say no to that is that is because they don't understand.  It is the listing agents job to explain it to the owner.  Most sellers that have sold a lot or a house and held a mortgage loved it.  That monthly check just keeps rolling in every month.  Usually their only regret is that they only own one mortgage.

     I have bought many houses with owner financing.  I have sold a few with seller financing.  It is a great way to buy or sell a house or a vacant lot.  Where else, in today's business climate, can the seller get a decent interest rate on his money? 

     One reason many sellers "think" holding a mortgage is not a good idea is they tell me things like, "I need the cash to buy an airplane or a truck or another property."  Can't you buy any of those things with the incoming payments?  Yes, you can.

     People tell me,"We want to invest that cash in the stock market or buy a mutual fund.".  Invest the $500 per month in the stock market or mutual fund.  That will work. Holding a mortgage is an investment, a good investment. 

     If you have a property for sale, offer to hold a mortgage.  Your property will sell faster and for more money.  You will feel like that interest is falling out of the sky.

     One of the first houses I ever sold with the owner holding a mortgage was for a seventy year old single man.  The price was about $90,000.  He owned it free and clear.  I was about thirty years old at the time.  As we chatted, he told me about his three financially irresponsible daughters.  I asked him how long did he think it would the three daughters to spend their inheritance.  I pointed out to him that if they inherited a mortgage, they would receive payments for years to come.  Leaving an heir a mortgage is a wonderful way to be remembered.

     If you have a house for sale near Hendersonville, North Carolina, call me at 828 755 6996.  I will help you get it sold.  If you have any questions, call me or leave a comment here at the end of this article.  I have a description of  owner financing on video.  
v=Dbg8GFXH2To        Watch the video.  If you have questions, call me or leave a comment here.