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8 Tips Selling a Luxury Home

Selling a home is not the easiest of tasks but it also doesn’t have to be as hard as figuring out the rubrics cube!  The level of difficulty does increase though when selling a luxury home.  With the increasing level of difficulty comes an increased level of expertise that is required to sell a luxury home.

Many real estate agents don’t have a clue when it comes to selling luxury homes.  The same can be said for the owners of a luxury home.  It is important that the proper steps are taken to ensure the home is sold in a timely fashion and for a fair, market value price!

Here are several tips for selling luxury homes that are helpful for any real estate agent or homeowner.

Is The Price Right?
Pricing a home correctly, from the beginning, is extremely important whether selling a $100,000 home or a 1.5 million dollar luxury home!  A common real estate pricing mistake that is made is hiring the real estate agent who suggests the highest price and in the luxury home market, this can be a huge mistake.  It’s extremely important that a luxury home is priced competitively or aggressively from the beginning to attract buyers from the beginning.  It is more common for a luxury home to sit on the market for longer than a lower priced home, however, a luxury home does not have to sit on the market if priced properly from the beginning!

To ensure the price is right, an in-depth comparative market analysis, must be completed on a luxury home in order to determine a competitive or aggressive price.  A real estate agent should spend several hours massaging the data, touring other comparable luxury homes currently for sale, and calling other real estate brokers who have recently sold comparable properties to the subject home.  Often times there are homes that are extremely similar to others in certain neighborhoods.  It is rare to find a luxury home that is identical to another, so knowing every amenity a luxury home has is crucial when determining the price!

How Will The Luxury Home Be Marketed?
The price a home enters the market at does a fair amount of the marketing in itself, however, there are other marketing tools that should be used when selling a luxury home.

Print advertising and direct mailing should still be apart of any real estate agents marketing plan/system.  The internet, however, has significantly changed how consumers shop.  This is no different in the real estate industry!  It is extremely important that a real estate agent who is selling a luxury home, is utilizing the internet.  It’s important that a real estate agent has their own website and/or blog and that it is mobile responsive as well.  Many home buyers are shopping on their tablets and mobile devices.

When selling a luxury home, it’s important that a real estate agent uses social media.  Social media is an extremely important marketing tool for real estate agents that can help give their clients maximum exposure!  It is a marketing tool that most real estate agents don’t utilize and/or understand.  Ask yourself, what percentage of people in the market to buy or sell a home have a Facebook Page, Twitter Handle, or Pinterest Account?  95%+?  By not marketing a luxury home for sale on social media, a real estate agent is doing their client a huge disservice!

When selecting a real estate agent to sell a luxury home, it’s critical to know where the luxury home will be marketed, how it will be marketed, and how frequently it will be marketed.  When selling a luxury home, a real estate agent must have a comprehensive marketing plan/system and cannot list a luxury home, wait and hope it sells.  These type of real estate agents are also known as a “post and pray Realtor.”

High Quality Photos and Videos are Important When Selling a Luxury Home

What Will The Quality Of The Photographs/Videos/Virtual Tours Be?
Most have heard the saying, “quality over quantity.”  This relates perfectly to the quality of photographs and videos of a luxury home for sale.  With over 90% of buyers beginning their home search online, it’s critical the photographs and videos of a luxury home are outstanding and nothing but the best!

Every real estate agent will offer to take photos of a home, but it shouldn’t be as easy as just leisurely taking photos.  When selling a luxury home, if the real estate agent is not having a professional photographer take photos of the home, they better have some great equipment.  Top real estate agents who choose to take their own photographs of their luxury home listings must have experience and also high end equipment such as a wide angle lens.  When taking photos of a luxury home a few things that need to be considered are, is the lighting right for the photos, are the amenities being photographed, and is the exquisite location being highlighted.

A picture may be worth a 1,000 words, how much is a video or virtual tour worth?  A billion?  When selling a luxury home, a professionally created video or virtual tour can be the difference of whether or not the luxury home sells.  Most local MLS’s have a limit to the number of photos that can be placed on-line, but allow a location where a video tour or “virtual tour” can be placed.  Many luxury homes are much larger than 25 photos can showcase and also much more glamorous than 25 photos can showcase, so video is a great way to allow potential buyers the ability to “walk-through” the luxury home in the comfort of their present home.

Is It The Right Time To Sell?
When selling a luxury home, timing plays a larger role than when selling non-luxury home.  For instance, if a waterfront luxury home is being sold in Rochester, NY, it’s important to select the correct time of year to sell.  Selling a home in the middle of the cold, blustery winter would not be a good time to showcase the waterfront!  The same can be said for a luxury waterfront home in Jupiter, FL, selling a home during hurricane season may not be the best time to list a luxury home for sale.

Will There Be Any Open Houses?
A very popular question many home owners have for real estate agents is, are you going to have an open house?  There is much debate whether public open houses help sell homes or not.  When it comes to luxury homes, public open houses do not help sell homes.  When it comes to selling a luxury home, public open houses often bring in people just interested in seeing how the “rich and famous” live.  There is absolutely no way to determine whether the people coming through the open house are qualified to purchase the luxury home or not!

While public open houses do not help sell luxury homes, broker open houses can be helpful.  A broker open, which is an open house for local real estate professionals, allows real estate agents who have buyer prospects looking for luxury homes to view possible matches.  A broker open is much more successful if the real estate agents who sell luxury homes locally are able to attend, as they have the greatest probability of having a client for the home!

Are The Location & Lifestyle Being Portrayed Correctly?
Luxury homes are often luxurious because of their location and lifestyle.  If a luxury home is part of a development which includes a clubhouse or yacht club privileges, it is important they are being showcased in the listing information.  This is another reason why utilizing video or virtual tour when selling a luxury home is a great marketing tool as it is a very good way to present a homes location as well as the lifestyle.

When buying a luxury home, the prospective purchasers will often want to know who else is living in the general vicinity of the home.  It’s important to know or find out who else lives in the area and ensure this information is available to real estate agents who are showing the home.

Staging with a Purpose Helps Sell Luxury Homes

Will Any Staging Be Done?
Staging does not sell homes but it certainly can help!  There are many sellers who believe that by hiring a real estate agent who has a staging designation, their home will sell because their home has been staged.  This is wrong.  Obtaining a designation for staging doesn’t necessarily mean they are a great real estate agent.

When selling a luxury home, staging will help maximize price and minimize time on the market.  When staging a luxury home, it is important that the amenities which make the home luxurious are being showcased.  If there is an outdoor BBQ, is it staged so that potential buyers can envision their summertime gatherings?  A luxury home with an over-sized formal dining room should have elegant place settings with fine china at each place setting to help a buyer envision what their fine dining parties may look like.

Can You Be Patient?
One of the biggest things that a seller needs to consider when selling a luxury home, patience is a must!  Selling a luxury home will normally take longer than a non-luxury home.

One major reason that luxury homes take longer to sell than non-luxury homes is the number of possible buyers available to purchase the home.  Face it, there are many buyers who can afford a $150,000 home entering the market on a daily basis.  There aren’t many buyers who can afford a 1.5 million dollar home entering the market on a daily basis.  For this reason alone, it’s important to be patient and understand that if the above tips are being practiced, a buyer will surface!

For example, in Monroe County, New York, there have been a total of 58 sold properties in the +/- of $500,000 price range in the past 12 months versus 891 sold properties in the +/- of $100,000 price range in the past 12 months.  The average days on the market for the $500,000 homes was 73 and the average days on the market for the $100,000 homes was 39.  As the statistics prove, in the Rochester, NY luxury home market there are less buyers in the marketplace than there are in the Rochester, NY non-luxury home market.

10 Quick Facts About Property Investment


1. Leverage enables you to borrow other peoples money;
2. Compounding will let you maximise the benefits of borrowing other peoples money;
3. Historically the longer you hold onto a property the greater the capital appreciation, which is what makes you wealthy in the long-term;
4. Roughly around 10% of Australians own an investment property which is negatively geared;
5. New properties tend to have higher rates of depreciation compared to old properties;
6. Capital city areas continue to have growing populations and increased property demand;
7. Properties have grown by over 14 times since the 1970’s in Australia;
8. The interest component of mortgages on investment properties is tax deductible, which is why many people feel interest only loans are the best option for property investors;
9. Units and Houses have performed very closely over the last years in Australia;
10. Property near public transport tends to be in more demand compared to property far away.

4 Things to Know About Investing in International Real Estate

Real estate is a tricky game – you must become very knowledgeable about your target markets and your competitors in order to become successful. That’s true in North America, as well as anywhere else in the world.

But when you start to branch outside of the U.S. real estate market, that’s when things can really start to get complicated. The rules are different, and mistakes can be costly.

Here are a few things you need to know if you’re considering investing in international real estate.

You Need To Know What Stage Your Market Is In

There are roughly five stages to every emerging market. If you don’t know what stage that market is in, you could get taken to the cleaners. The first stage is usually reserved for locals only. This means that locals are using the land for their own purpose, like agriculture and business.

An outside party can bring that land to the second stage, which means that large swatches of land are bought for the purpose of developing them at a later date (or hanging onto them indefinitely).

These large swatches are eventually broken up into smaller parcels, becoming further developed and moving into stage three of the real estate market stages. These parcels can become small enough that homebuyers can actually come in and purchase, as well as speculators.

The land switches to a mainstream homebuyer market in stage four when restaurants, hotels, and other consumer-driven developments arrive. This then becomes a full-fledged city at stage five, with all the infrastructure and civil services that come with it.

Each stage has its own advantages and challenges. For the risk-averse, the early stages are the most risky – but do provide the highest beta. This means that with a higher risk, comes a higher reward.

You Must Have A Plan

Without a plan, you’ll never have a clear vision of what to do with your new investment. Knowing if you are planning on renting the house, living in it, or just holding onto the property until property values rise are important questions to ask yourself before diving into real estate.

You Won’t Get Rich Quick

Real estate investing is a long-term investment. There’s no way around that – while people in distinct markets may have sped up this timeline, the fact of the matter is that real estate is hard work, and may not pay off in the end if you don’t do your research beforehand.

You Must Study Up

Becoming a successful international real estate investor means knowing everything you possibly can about the situation you are putting yourself in: the local market, the neighborhood, and even the property itself. If you don’t know what your cash flows will be, like how long it usually takes to rent a property in your market, you may have too much overhead to cover each month. Know before you buy!

Final Tips

As a final word of wisdom, becoming a real estate tycoon is hard work, and isn’t for everyone. If you take on something that is a little too far over your head, you run the risk of damaging your livelihood, your family, and your future. Know yourself before buying any property, and understand the risks and time commitment involved.

10 Top Real Estate Tips for 2015

The recovery has yet to arrive in many states, reinforcing the notion that real estate growth is regional. No one can accurately predict when this real estate uptick will end or how hard, or soft, a landing it will make. In the meantime, let proven fundamentals, applied with a few modern wrinkles, rule the day. Here are 10 tips for 2015 to help the real estate process.

1. Do sweat the small (cheap) stuff, sellers

Little touches go a long way in the buyer’s eye, starting logically with the entry. Trim bushes, wash walkways and change out trampled welcome mats. Inside, de-stink with candles and counter sprays, de-jam closets and de-clutter rooms, focusing keenly on kitchen counters. Hide scrub brushes and other fantasy-killing labor tools. Dust, wax, scrub toilets, wash windows, test and clean lights, put out fresh towels, winnow family mementos, harness or hide that avalanche of toys, remove prescription drugs from medicine cabinets and police the yard for “pet bombs.” It’s time well-spent.

2. Take note(s), buyers

In a whirlwind house-hunting tour of several properties, buyers benefit by keeping a pro-and-con checklist of each home they visit. Otherwise, the features of several homes tend to blend together in a tired brain by day’s end. Creating a rating scale of 1 to 10 also helps, as does carrying a checklist of specific features that you seek in an ideal home.

3. Sell by season

Though spring is optimal, home selling is a year-round sport. Use seasonal accents to make buyers linger longer.

Winter: Unfurl throw rugs and spotlight functional fireplaces. Near holidays, add touches like wreaths and pine-cone centerpieces. Display photos of your home a season ahead, particularly in winter, so buyers can see the house ensconced by greenery.

Spring: Fresh-cut flowers and candles bring spring scents indoors. For that new-start look, do extra spring cleaning and use brightly colored linens, spreads and pillows. Add little pops of color to the entry and landscape.

Summer: Highlight patios and other outdoor areas. Swap out dark towels and curtains for light colors. Put out a seasonal fruit basket or add hanging flowers. Keep the house cool but not cold.

Fall: Display pumpkins by the door and vases of fall foliage or tricolored corn inside. Use seasonal scents such as baked apple. Keep those leaves at bay.

4. Drill deeply

Buyers are regularly advised to scope out the block at varying hours, but why not drill down further to see if your potential new neighborhood is fading or flourishing?

  • Bad signs: A major local employer is struggling or moving away; adjacent neighborhoods are progressively turning into rentals; and a few too many for-sale homes are lingering on the market. Nearby commercial spaces remain persistently vacant.
  • Good signs: Schools are in high demand and well-rated. Young families and artsy types are moving in. Older couples are “aging in place” and nearby commercial properties are getting redeveloped and quickly leased. For-sale homes are generating multiple offers.

5. ‘Big data’ is everywhere, so tap in

While local knowledge and old-school networking will always be valuable, the latest technology lets agents offer much more. Some agencies offer “livability” ratings by ranking and contrasting neighborhoods by air quality, traffic choke points and specific data on a home’s energy efficiency. In 2013, the National Association of Realtors introduced its Predictive Analytics group. Banks already use “big data” to gauge the worth of foreclosures and short sales, and mobile apps now offer it for consumer and agent use. Ask agents if they offer this and other edgy technology such as high-definition aerial footage shot by drones. Should your grandiose home merit that, go big!

6. Transparency equals trust

Buyers will certainly enlist inspectors to twice-over your home, Mr. Seller. So instead of inviting disappointment, delay and distrust, be transparent with your own presale inspection. It’s far better to know now about issues with the plumbing, HVAC (heating, ventilating and air conditioning), foundation, electrical systems and roof. If you haven’t gotten these repairs done, get a quote from a company like Wellesley roofers. If you have, provide the buyer a copy of the inspection along with repair receipts, and explain if or how you’ve adjusted your price accordingly. Buyers appreciate candor.

7. Math versus ego

Too often, buyers get caught up in win-at-all-costs negotiation. They’ll stubbornly let as little as a few grand lock them out of the right house. At an interest rate of 4.5 percent, the difference between paying $200,000 and $195,000 — assuming 1.25 percent property tax and 15 percent down — is only about $25 per month on a 30-year mortgage, or about the cost of lunch for two at a fast-casual eatery, before the tip. Don’t let that ruin your chances at your dream home.

8. Retain mineral rights

With so many giant natural-gas fields (shales) in play across the U.S. and new ones pending, homeowners should exercise “seller’s market” clout to retain mineral rights. While that intent needn’t even be mentioned in the sales contract in some states, it’s always safest to note it, provided the buyer doesn’t protest. Avoid that scenario by conveying those rights to a trustworthy relative or to an energy company buying them before putting the house on the block. “Mineral rights? Oh, so sorry, I no longer own them.”

9. Buying? Then cool it for a while

Refrain from making big capital purchases like a new car, opening new credit cards or amassing big chunks of other new debt before buying a home. These raise your debt-to-income ratio, which lenders examine to determine the mortgage amount you can afford. Also avoid moving large sums of money around, changing banks, changing jobs and becoming self-employed before buying a home.

10. The price is right

Trite, you say? Perhaps. But accurate home pricing from the outset never goes out of style because it sells homes. Some agents advise sellers to overprice because inventory is low. Others say go below market to spur a bidding war. Don’t get caught up in pricing games.

Activity in the first month of a listing is always the best, so don’t risk wasting it. Price too high, and scare off many buyers and agents. Price too low, and risk leaving dollars on the table. Hiring the right agent based on recommendations, response time, in-person interviews, track record and data support will yield that pricing expert you need.

Is Real Estate Really the Best Investment?

Last decade’s housing bubble is becoming a distant memory. Mortgage rates are near historic lows, interest-only loans are back and everyone loves real estate as an investment again.

More than 1 in 4 Americans (27 percent) said real estate was the best investment for money they would not need for at least a decade, according to a new Bankrate.com survey of 1,000 investors. Cash came in second with 23 percent of investors, only 17 percent said the stock market is their preferred place for long-term money and just 5 percent said they would put their long-term money in bonds.

It is the first time real estate has taken the top spot in the three years Bankrate has been conducting the survey. Cash was investors’ favorite in 2013 and 2014. “It begs the questions if more Americans are once again viewing real estate as a golden ticket,” said Greg McBride, chief financial analyst for Bankrate.

Credit is harder to come by than a decade ago and lenders face more regulations, but financial advisors say many clients are catching the real estate bug again.

“Justlast week,a high-tech corporate boomer client with no experience in renovating and selling real estate told us he wanted to go into flipping a property with his friend, who does this for a living,” said Jon Ulin, certified financial planner and managing principal of Ulin & Co. Wealth Management in Boca Raton, Florida. His client wanted to liquidate 25 percent of his IRA to invest in the project and told Ulin it would “diversify” his portfolio.

“I advised him that putting a quarter or more of his life savings into flipping and renovating one property with the hopes of making a possible 14 percent profit is not a good idea and a gamble,” Ulin said.

Real estate has curb appeal that other financial assets can’t match.

“For many investors, the tangible nature of real estate simply offers much more peace of mind than the intangible nature of stock and bonds,” said Stephen Doucette, a certified financial planner and vice president of Proctor Financial in Sherborn, Massachusetts. “Real estate pricing also adds peace of mind to investors as pricing seems more stable because it is not updated daily by the media.”

Investors should weigh the long-term return potential of real estate investing compared with other assets.

The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Composite Home Price Index, which measures the value of residential real estate in 20 major metropolitan areas, has generated a hearty annualized 9.2 percent return over the past three years through June 30, but produced an annualized 0.4 percent loss over the past decade. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 index, a broad measure of the U.S. stock market, grew an annualized 14.8 percent over the past three years and 5.87 percent over the past 10 years.

But investors with good credit can borrow to buy real estate, which can enhance returns—or magnify losses, depending on the market. “The singular and best reason to own real estate as an investment is to use leverage,” said Stephen Lovell, a certified financial planner in Walnut Creek, California. “Without it, your return on investment tends to be about 2 percent to 3 percent.”

Real estate also comes with different risks than other financial assets. You cannot sell it as quickly as stocks and bonds. You have to pay for insurance, maintenance and property taxes that can eat into your profits.

“You can’t sell real estate short so you cannot hedge against a down market and the market for real estate is too local,” warns Wes Shannon, a certified financial planner with SJK Financial Planning in Hurst, Texas. “You may live in a state or city going through an economic boom, but if the other houses on your street start to decline or convert to rentals you can see a depreciation of your [home] value … even one bad neighbor can ruin an investment in real estate.”

How to Become a Theatrical Makeup Artist

A makeup (also known as make-up) artist creates and implements character design involving looks. They often work closely with the costume designer to create an entire look. In the theater, makeup artists must also work with environments as the main goal is to ensure that the character/actor’s facial expressions are visible to the audience. In the past, performers did their own makeup; however, in the 21st century it is more common to find professional makeup artists doing it for them.

This is an example of a small train case.

Learning the skills

  1. Every career demands certain skills and abilities from its professionals. Some key traits for a makeup artist are: natural talent; ability to speak and listen well; good manner with people; eye for detail; a flexible nature; a positive nature; patience; hand-eye coordination; ability to draw straight lines and consistent shapes; creativity; great portfolio; good grooming and personal hygiene habits.
  2. There are two ways to learn how to be a makeup artist. You can go it alone or you can go to a school. Either way you will have to practice.
  3. Some ways to sneak in practice is to have makeup parties, read books on makeup, volunteer for makeup-related jobs, find a mentor or be an apprentice or become an intern.
  4. If you chose to go to school to learn the art of makeup, make sure you shop around. A good article on the subject is “Before You Choose a Makeup School” by Mary Erickson. She cautions that your first impression of a school is probably not necessarily indicative of the reality of it.
  5. Here are a few things to keep in mind while looking to schools:-Are the teachers working professionals?
    -Is the curriculum up-to-date?
    -Is the curriculum advanced (or beginning) enough for your level?
    -Is the class/program specialized or specific?
    -Does the school offer on-the-job training or co-op programs?
    -Does the school offer job placement help?
    -What is the school’s published placement rate of its graduates?
    -How large or small is the average class?
    -How much time is given to hands-on training?
    -Does the school supply models?
    -As the program in or cover the area(s) you are interested in?
    -Ask to sit in on a few classes. If the school refuses, see it as a red flag that they are more interested in cranking out graduates rather than really helping you.
    -What is the school/class cancellation policy?
    -Ask to speak with past graduates. If they decline, see it as another red flag.Getting the jobFinding job openings can be tricky if your school does not offer placement help, or you do not already know someone in the field. Use the classified ads in papers, job boards, company websites, online job boards and trade publications.Once you have the job make yourself handy and go beyond the basics of the job. Don’t settle for the status quo: be visible, be creative, be polite and professional, and be personable.Always present the highest quality work ethic in all things, in all ways.

3D Animation / Graphic Design Job Description

Graphic design and 3-D animation blend art with technology to communicate informative, entertaining and inspiring ideas. Graphic design focuses on creating visual concepts for brochure, advertisement and magazine layouts, while 3-D animation focuses on creating three-dimensional virtual objects for use in digital products. These professions are ideal for individuals with strong artistic abilities. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median annual wage for graphic designers was $44,150 as of May 2012. The median annual wage for multimedia artists and animators was $61,370 as May 2012.

Many graphic designers and 3-D animators work for advertising agencies.Doing the WorkSuperior creative skills play a key role in the effectiveness of 3-D animators and graphic designers. They must create visual concepts and ideas than can engage and appeal to consumers of their products. These professionals also require strong computer skills and a deep knowledge of design and animation software to formulate ideas and prepare their products. In addition, they need time-management skills to plan their time well and beat tight deadlines. Because graphic designers and 3-D animators may work in teams — especially when working on large projects — they need good communication skills to confer effectively with project staff and clients.Animating ObjectsThe main responsibility of 3-D animators is to create virtual objects that can move and rotate like real-life objects in movies, music videos and computer games. In the production of an animated movie, for example, 3-D animators may capture an actor’s movements to create computer generated images, which they can manipulate to make animated scenes. These animators can also manipulate light, texture and color to create 3-D drawings and illustrations for product labels and presentations.Developing DesignersGraphic designers are responsible for the overall look of a website, ad, magazine or brochure. They might create the images to appear on the front cover of a magazine and select the size, font, color and length of headlines, heading and texts. They might also present statistical data in the form of visual graphs, images and tables. In advertising, graphic designers create designs for company logos and product illustrations.Getting ThereEmployers of graphic designers and 3-D animators prefer candidates with bachelor’s degrees. Aspiring graphic designers can earn bachelor’s degrees in graphic, computer or multimedia design, while 3-D animators can secure bachelor’s degrees in 3-D animation or closely-related fields. Individuals with degrees in other disciplines, such as education, can pursue certificate programs in graphic design or animation to enter these professions. A master’s degree in fine arts, combined with vast work experience and a strong portfolio, can help 3D animators and graphic designers secure large and high profile projects and break into multimedia management positions.

The Essentials of Entertainers – Getting to Point A

Christian Music Inspires Body and Soul People write Gospel or Christian music so that they can express their sentiments and ideas about the Christian life.Nowadays gospel music has become a part of the mainstream music industry and is also becoming very popular.Although there are differences when it comes to creation, performance, and significance in different parts of society, the core of the music has not been lost. When Christian music is played, it is primarily for religious worship or religious ceremonies, then it can also be used for aesthetic purposes at the same time for entertainment purposes. But despite all the difference, the common theme of Christian music is not lost and that is to worship and praise God, Christ and the Holy Spirit, and this is the reason why this form of music inspires both body and soul. This type of music is very diverse but it continues to inspire the body and soul.Urban contemporary music, Southern gospel, traditional gospel music, and contemporary music are just some of the subgenres of what is known as Christian music.Christian music is known to use chorus or refrain very frequently, and this makes the music unique. A lot of people believe that Christian music inspires both body and soul.With this kind of music, the brain is stimulated and helps the body to relax so that one can enjoy the moment and forget about the day’s troubles. When listening to Christian music you mind and emotions are stimulated so as to help you express your creative sensitivity. There are two factors responsible for gospel music’s influences in the human mind and emotions.A lot of people are soothed with gospel music melodies and its helps their body relax and helps them in sleeping. Experts say that listening to gospel music is like having an inspiration sound bath that helps you to be calm and rested.This type of music can help people when they live with a high level of stress each day.
What Research About Bands Can Teach You
But of course it depends on the type of gospel music that you listen to.Christian music resembling rock music will not give you that calm spirit but instead it can make you more tense and more awake.Christian music with slow tempo can have a sedative effect and will calm a person and perhaps put him to sleep. Another advantage of listening to gospel music has to do with people with body and mind issues like those with psychiatric disorders, physical handicap, and those suffering from sensory impairment, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse. Because of their inspiring lyrics, Christian music has brought healing to people that cannot be received from contemporary music. The message of God and His Words are brought forth in gospel music and is the main reason for its calming effect to the soul that no other kind of music can achieve.What I Can Teach You About Bands

Calligraphy in Islamic Art

Tile with Arabic inscription, Iran, about 1215. Museum no. 1481-1876

Tile with Arabic inscription, Iran, about 1215. Museum no. 1481-1876

The development of sophisticated calligraphy as an art form is not unique to Islamic culture. Other examples include Chinese and Japanese calligraphy and illuminated bibles from north-west Europe including the famous Book of Kells. In the Islamic world, however, calligraphy has been used to a much greater extent and in astonishingly varied and imaginative ways, which have taken the written word far beyond pen and paper into all art forms and materials. For these reasons, calligraphy may be counted as a uniquely original feature of Islamic art. The genius of Islamic calligraphy lies not only in the endless creativity and versatility, but also in the balance struck by calligraphers between transmitting a text and expressing its meaning through a formal aesthetic code.

The Arabic language, and subsequently the art of calligraphy, is held in great esteem by Muslims because Arabic was the language in which the Qu’ran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad in the 7th century. The Arabic text of the Qu’ran is sacred to Muslims, and its high status gave rise to an associated respect for books in general. However, it is important to remember that while the Qu’ran’s holy status provides an explanation for calligraphy’s importance, by no means all Arabic calligraphy is religious in content. In general, calligraphic inscriptions on works of art comprise one or more of the following types of text:

  • Qu’ranic quotations
  • other religious texts
  • poems
  • praise for rulers
  • aphorismsThese types of text can be seen across all art forms.Since Muhammad’s time, Arabic has become a great world language, used over a huge area as a language of religion, government, commerce, literature and science. In time, the letters of the Arabic script, with the addition of a few new letter forms, were also used to write in Persian, Turkish and other languages, as well as Arabic.
Leaf from the Qur'an, Middle East, 800-900. Museum no. Circ.161-1951Leaf from the Qu’ran, Middle East,

800-900. Museum no. Circ.161-1951

How the scripts developed

Although many dialects of Arabic were spoken in pre-Islamic times, and some are known to have been written down, most literature was transmitted orally. The Qu’ran, too, was preserved by oral transmission until after the Prophet’s death when it was recorded in written form. This required that the Arabic script be standardised. We know that the standard form of script was in use by the end of the 7th century. It was employed, for example, on the first surviving monument of Islamic architecture, the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, built in AD 691. The new writing also appeared on the coins minted for Muhammad’s successors, the caliphs. Both the Dome of the Rock and early Islamic coinage use Qu’ranic quotations to declare Islam as the new monotheistic faith.

Dish with inscription in floriated Kufic script, Iran or Uzbekistan, 900-1000. Museum no. C.66-1967

Dish with inscription in floriated Kufic
script, Iran or Uzbekistan, 900-1000.
Museum no. C.66-1967

The first formal calligraphic style is called the Kufic style after the city of Kufah in Iraq. It was used in many early Qur’an manuscripts and for inscriptions, including those at the Dome of the Rock. Confusingly, the same name is also commonly used for a second major group of script styles, which came to prominence in the 10th century. These new, more angular styles came to include many fanciful variants such as foliated Kufic (decorated with curling leaf shapes) and floriated Kufic (decorated with flower forms). This second group of Kufic styles was used in contexts as varied as Qu’ran manuscripts, coinage, architectural inscriptions and the decoration of ceramics.

While this second type of Kufic was being developed in the Middle East, probably in Baghdad, a new style was developed far to the west, in Muslim-ruled Spain or Morocco. The Arabic name for this western region is al-Maghrib, and so the new style was called Maghribi. Some calligraphers in the region still use this Maghribi style today. In the Eastern Islamic world, however, the Kufic styles had more or less died out by the 13th century, replaced by the range of more rounded styles in use now.

Bowl, Iran or Uzbekistan, 900-1000. Museum no. C.47-1964

Bowl, Iran or Uzbekistan, 900-1000.
Museum no. C.47-1964

It may be that the new, more fluid styles developed in the East because paper had replaced parchment and papyrus as the main medium for important manuscripts and documents. The surface of the paper could be sized (coated with starch) and rubbed with a stone until extremely smooth and glossy. The pen moved over this surface with great ease. (Parchment continued to be used until a much later date in the Maghrib).

Another factor was the type of pen used, which was made from a reed. The nib was made by cutting the end of the reed with a knife. Different effects could be achieved by cutting the nib in different ways. The later, rounded scripts were written with a nib cut at an oblique angle, which allowed the calligrapher to create both thick and thin lines, adding elegance and variety to the script. The width of the pen was also important: wider nibs were needed for larger script so that the width of the line stayed in proportion to the overall size of the writing.

CalligSystem.362.jpg

Alif image

A system of proportion based on the width of the nib also determined the shapes of the individual letters, and the relative sizes of the letters in a line of writing. The letter Alif, for example, consists essentially of a single vertical stroke. In one style, it is only three times as high as it is wide, while in another it is seven times as high. The letter Alif is therefore far more prominent in the second style and contributes to its overall appearance. Variations were allowed to take account of the different contexts a letter might occur in, and there was also flexibility in the length of the ligatures, or joins between the letters. This was important because the Arabic script is always cursive, or joined-up, and never has separate letters, as in printed English.Another basic ingredient in the formation of a style was the nature of the base line. In many scripts, the imaginary line on which the letters were written was strictly horizontal. In others, each new group of letters began above the base line and then sloped downwards to the left to meet it. Arabic script, unlike English, reads right to left. These ‘hanging’ scripts were originally devised as a security feature in official documents, because the ‘hanging’ groups could be placed very close together to prevent unauthorised additions. Later, though, this feature was used in other contexts because it was considered elegant.Materials and techniquesDesigns with calligraphy were created out of many different materials. Yet calligraphy often imitates the technical effects of pen on paper, even when it appears on other media. It is possible to see, for example, the graceful range from thick to thin line and the square shape of superscript dots written with a square-cut pen nib. Artists often made their designs by copying from prepared templates written out (on to paper) by a calligrapher.

Ink on parchment

Before the invention of paper, vellum or parchment was the highest quality writing material available. It is made from prepared animal hide. A reed pen, with the tip cut at an angle and filled with ink, would have been used. Writing on vellum can be erased or altered.Ink on paperThe calligraphy would have been created using a reed pen and ink directly onto starched and polished paper, which provided an excellent smooth surface for writing.CeramicsThe calligraphy tile pictured below was deeply carved with the inscriptions (and plant designs) and covered with coloured glazes, before the final firing. This technique was used in Central Asia only for a brief period, from around 1350 to the early 1600s.WoodThe letters were carved and then painted. In the image below the paint has now mostly worn off though you can still see some traces remaining.

Leaf from the Qur'an, Middle East, 800-900. Museum no. Circ.161-1951

Leaf from the Qur’an, Middle East, 800-900. Museum no. Circ.161-1951

Detail of page from the Zafar Nama epic, Iran, 1500-1600. Museum no. E.2138-1929

Detail of page from the Zafar Nama epic, Iran, 1500-1600. Museum no. E.2138-1929

Tile Fragment, Bukhara, about 1359. Museum no. 971-1901

Tile fragment, Bukhara, about 1359. Museum no. 971-1901

Detail from wooden panel with Arabic inscription, Spain or Morocco, 1150-1250. Museum no. 378A-1907Detail from wooden panel with Arabic inscription, Spain or Morocco, 1150-1250. Museum no. 378A-1907Stained glassThis window pictured below is made from small pieces of glass of different colours, which have been arranged in patterns within a plaster framework.TextilesThe weaver of the silk from Muslim Spain has accurately reproduced the flowing lines of a written inscription in Arabic, a task requiring enormous care in the design. The phrase ‘Glory to our lord the sultan’ has been repeated within the widest band in the design, creating the illusion of a long frieze of calligraphy.Enamelled glassThe lamp was made by blowing hot glass into shape and then leaving it to cool. The enamel colours and gilding were then painted on – the enamel was a solution of colours and ground glass that melted and fused on to the lamp when it was reheated in a kiln. The blown glass would have been decorated with enamel and gilt, possibly using fine brushes.MetalworkMetalworkers chiselled out tiny areas of the brass surface and filled them with pieces of silver and gold. They added details by chasing the surfaces of the softer inlaid metals with a hammer and tools and adding a black filler to create contrast. The casket pictured below has a strip of calligraphy around the sides and on the lid.

Window with the Shahadah, the Muslim profession of faith, carved stucco and coloured glass, Egypt, 1800-80. Museum no. 1202-1883

Window with the Shahadah, the Muslim profession of faith, carved stucco and coloured glass, Egypt, 1800-80. Museum no. 1202-1883

Silk with Arabic inscription, silk and metal-wrapped thread in lampas weave, Spain, 1300-1400. Museum no. 830-1894
Mosque lamp, gilt and enamelled glass, Egypt or Syria, 1340. Museum no. 1056-1869

Silk with Arabic inscription, silk and metal-wrapped thread in lampas weave, Spain, 1300-1400. Museum no. 830-1894Mosque lamp, gilt and enamelled glass, Egypt or Syria, 1340. Museum no. 1056-1869

Casket, brass, with inlaid gold and silver, Iran, 1300-1350. Museum no. 459-1873

Casket, brass with inlaid gold and silver, Iran, 1300-1350. Museum no. 459-1873Decorating calligraphyAs well as being written with great elegance, there were many ways in which calligraphy could be enhanced by adding decoration. The words themselves could be written in gold, or in colours other than black. Letters and words could also be outlined or could lie against a background pattern. In addition, calligraphers combined different sizes, colours and styles of text for different phrases or sections of text (but always sticking to the rules of proportionality within each section). These Qu’ran folios show how calligraphers could make functional details of formatting and punctuation into beautifully designed elements.

Notice that the decorated frames and background patterns do not interfere with the clarity of the script, or distract from the content of the text. This is very important because the Qu’ran is considered to be the word of God.

Sculpting Materials of Beginner

Sculpting can be a rewarding and therapeutic form of art making. Working with hands directly with medium is a unique experience. Unfortunately, many sculpting materials are expensive or not conducive for use by beginners. In this post, we’ll take a look at some sculpting materials that are easy to find, inexpensive, and most importantly – appropriate for beginners (and young artists).

Before we look at sculpting materials, let’s briefly discuss sculpting processes. There are basically two “umbrellas” sculpting processes fall under. These two “umbrellas” are additive processes and subtractive processes. Additive sculpting processes involve adding materials to “build up” the sculpture, where subtractive processes rely on the removal of the material to “reveal” the sculpture. Additive techniques include modeling and assemblage. Materials typically used for additive processes include clay, wax, and plasticine. An example of a subtractive processes is carving. Typical materials used for subtractive processes include wood, plaster, and marble.Obviously, some of these materials may not practical for beginners. So, let’s take a look at a few that are.Materials for Additive Sculpture ProcessesModel Magic – Model Magic is made by Crayola. It is a non-toxic and inexpensive sculpting material that air dries. It can be painted with water-based paints when it is dry. It’s fairly sticky stuff and will adhere to an armature pretty well. Art snobs may turn their nose up at Model Magic, but it’s an interesting sculpting medium that’s perfect for beginners that want to have an experience with modeling without the mess or the expense.Plasticine Clay – Plasticine clay is colored, oil-based clay. It’s what most of use think of when we think of modeling clay. Because it is oil-based, it will not dry out. Most plasticine clay is labeled as non-toxic, but I wouldn’t recommend using it with smaller children. It’s also pricey. If you are considering a larger sculpture, then plasticine clay may “break the bank”. But for smaller sculptures, maquettes, or just playing around, plasticine may be the way to go.Polymer Clay – Polymer clay is actually PVC. Liquid is added to make it pliable enough to be formed and shaped. Pigment is added to the clay to give it its color and it comes in a wide variety of them. The more you work the polymer clay, the easier it is to work with. Small or weak hands may have some problems manipulating this modeling material when they first start working with it. Polymer clay can be baked in the oven to fix it into shape. This makes it a popular material for making small pieces of jewelry. Polymer clay, however is the most expensive modeling material on this list. You are pretty much limited to small sculptures with this material.Air Dry Clay – There are a few companies that make air dry “clay”. Each of these products vary greatly in quality and price. For children, your best bet may be with Crayola Air Dry Clay. It’s very inexpensive, non-toxic, and can be painted when its dry. For more developed artists, AMACO Marblex Self-Hardening clay may be the way to go. It’s relatively inexpensive and can result in professional results.Home Made Play Dough – My mom made me homemade play dough all the time growing up and I loved it. It was warm and mushy and she would make it any color that I wanted. It’s incredibly easy to make, non-toxic and fun. But this medium is pretty much for kids and open-minded adults. Don’t expect professional results from homemade play dough.Materials for Subtractive SculptureSoap Sculpture – Soap is a great material for carving. It’s safe and well-very clean. Dull blades can be used and still create good details. Soap is also inexpensive and perfect for a class project. The best part is that the cheaper soaps are better suited for sculpture!Plaster of Paris – Plaster of Paris is easy to find at most art stores. It’s inexpensive and easy to mix. Pour it into empty paper milk cartons. Peel away the paper after it sets, and you’re ready to create a sculpture. Use a rasp and sand paper to remove the plaster to reveal your sculpture.Balsa Wood – Balsa wood is soft and pliable. It’s extremely easy to carve. It makes a suitable wood for beginning carvers. Balsa wood can be picked up at most art stores, but larger pieces might have to be special ordered. Balsa wood is not very expensive, but it’s not cheap either. Carving with Balsa wood might not be suitable for younger artists, since sharp knives are recommended for carving.

10 Quick Facts About Graffiti

Sure, you’ve seen the bubble letters and bright colors that decorate walls, poles and train cars. You may have even heard it by different names. Street art. Vandalism. Tagging. Columbia even has an area dedicated to the craft called Graffiti Beach in Flat Branch Park.But when and where did it start? Who started it? Why is it there? And what are the legal issues? This quick list will give you a glimpse into the historical and cultural context of graffiti.1. Graffiti as it’s known today began in the late 1960s in Philadelphia.It was primarily used to make political statements and mark street gang territory.2. One of the first known graffiti artists was called Cornbread.His name is Darryl McCray, but he was known by his tagging name, Cornbread.3. Many graffiti artists tag their work.“Tagging” is a way for street artists to sign their name anonymously. They often use random words or symbols and then embellish them with stars or crowns.. The Style Wars began in the 1970s, which introduced the concept of bombing.Graffiti artists created bigger and bigger pieces in an attempt to achieve fame. They would often “bomb,” or “hit,” one area, which meant painting many surfaces in an area. For the sake of time, they often threw up tags instead of complex pieces.5. The Philadelphia Anti-Graffiti Network was founded in 1984 to fight the spread of graffiti.The agency is backed by the city of Philadelphia and provides resources to businesses who need help eradicating vandalism of their property. They also have a Mural Arts Program which allows youth to express themselves by creating murals throughout the city. Similar agencies have popped up in cities around the U.S.6. While most laws surrounding graffiti are local, there is a federal law prohibiting railroad vandalism.The law is a strategy to prevent trespassing on railroad property and vandalism affecting railroad safety.  Their main concern in creating this law was safety.7. Graffiti is one of the four elements of hip hop.The other three are DJing, emceeing and break dancing. Some have added on a fifth, which is knowledge.8. Subway graffiti died out for the most part in the late 1980s due to heightened security.The last subway train with a significant amount of graffiti on it was taken off the rails in 1989. It didn’t die out completely, however, and some artists took to freight trains.9 A black book, or piece book, is a graffiti artist’s sketchbook.It’s often closely guarded from authorities because it could be used as evidence in vandalism cases.Photo courtesy of Jemandarderes/Wikimedia10. To keep up with the competition, graffiti artists created rubber stamps, stickers and stencils for more efficient tagging.Some believed that this defied the true nature of graffiti, but at this point in the 1980s, everyone was focused on achieving fame.

5 Easy Photoshop Tips for Beginners

In this article I will walk you through some basic Photoshop retouching skills. These 5 easy Photoshop tips for beginners will be a great start to learning to proces your photographs.1. Learning Keyboard ShortcutsLearning keyboard shortcuts will help you to speed up your processing workflow. There are few key shortcuts for different tools in the tool bar. A few of the most widely used shortcuts are:

Photoshop keyboard shortcuts

  • V = move tool
  • F – toggles through display screen modes
  • Space bar = temporary hand key
  • B – paintbrush tool
  • D – sets the foreground/background colorss to default
  • X – swaps between background and foreground color
  • E – eraser tool
  • S – stamp or cloning tool
  • W – quick selection tool
  • Ctrl+j – duplicates the selected layer

There are just few of the most regularly used Photoshop shortcuts. When you start using the program more, your knowledge of shortcuts will gradually increase. Once you are aware of the most used shortcuts retouching pace will be faster than ever.

2. Color Enhancing – Saturation versus Vibrance

Photoshop tips vibrance

Color is another domain you can try while enhancing your photographs. Generally when you are beginning in photography, enhancing the color of every image looks good, as if the colors are speaking out of the photographs. It will be lot more helpful if you can understand the difference between how saturation and vibrance works. Go to Image menu and choose Adjustment under the menu

As shown in the image to the right, select the Vibrance option. You will get two options under the menu – Vibrance and Saturation. Vibrance increases the saturation of less saturated colors. This option avoids yellow and orange skin tones. Basically vibrance works best for portraits.

Photoshop tips saturation color adjustments

On the other hand, saturation increases the intensity of all the colors in your image equally. This may not be a good option for portraits or peoples photos. What I can recommend is this: slowly start with vibrance for the color enhancement and use saturation later if you want to pump up the color more.

If you compare the two photos below, you will understand how vibrance is only responsible for increasing the intensity of less saturated colors, where as saturation increases the intensity of all colors equally.

Photoshop vibrance adjustment

Photoshop saturtation adjustment

3. Adding a Vignette

Photoshop vignette

Vignetting is basically a technique to darken the edges of your frame so that the eyes move to the subject more easily. This procedure works best when you have a subject in the center. Our eyes tend to move towards the brighter part of the image and recede on the darker side. This technique will result in dark space around the subject.

There are lots of manual ways you can add vignetting in your photos but I will talk about how to easily add vignetting in your images via Photoshop. Go to Filters Menu at the top and select “Lens Correction”, then choose the Custom Tab on the right. The third section down is for adding a vignette. Slide the Amount to the left to darken, and Midpoint to adjust the size of the circle.
Photoshop tips vibrance Photoshop tips vignetting

4. Adding Sharpness and Details

Photoshop filter lens correction vignette

Adding sharpness is another technique for beginners in Photoshop. This will make your image look more detailed. I would suggest detailing most of your images with appropriate values. But make sure you sharpen, or detail your images with a small value if you are going to upload images on Facebook because it compresses the images and adds some detail to make it took a bit sharper. So when an already sharpened image is uploaded in Facebook, there is a change of it looking too edgy.

Photoshop high pass filterLike any other technique, there are many ways you can add details in Photoshop. I will show you a very simple technique. Once you understand how this works you can experiment with some of the other techniques.
  • Step 1. Duplicate the selected layer with a keyboard shortcut Ctrl+J (PC) or Command+J oP MAC
  • Step 2. Open the High Pass filter: Filter > Other > High Pass on the top layer
  • Step 3. Apply an appropriate value (just to see the edges in the image) and click Okay
  • Step 4. Change the blending mode of the top layer to Overlay
  • Step 5. Adjust the opacity of that layer to your taste

Photoshop-tips-layer-blend-mode5. Photoshop Filter GalleryFilters are basically automated effects that you apply to your images with a few clicks. Filters can help you to achieve certain special effects or looks. There are various filters in Photoshop, which you can pick individually, each filter results in different effect when applied to different images. You an also apply more than one and stack them. Though I don’t use filters much, it’s good to explore if you are just starting out in Photoshop. Later, when you are more familiar with advanced tools and techniques you can try to create the similar effect from manual options and controls.To apply a filter select the layer and go to Filter > Filter Gallery. Before you apply any filter in the gallery make sure to change your image to 8 bit. You can do that by going to Image > Mode > 8 bits/channel

Photoshop filter gallery

I hope these 5 basic Photoshop tips will help you to retouch and enhance your photos. If you have others suitable for beginners please share in the comments below

The Effects of Theatre Education

  • Students involved in drama performance coursework or experience outscored non-arts students on the 2005 SAT by an average of 65 points in the verbal component and 34 points in the math component(1)?
  • Drama activities improve reading comprehension, and both verbal and non-verbal communication skills?
  • Drama helps to improve school attendance and reduce high school dropout rates(2)?
  • A 2005 Harris Poll revealed that 93% of the public believes that arts, including theatre, are vital to a well-rounded education (3)?
  • Drama can improve skills and academic performance in children and youth with learning disabilities?DRAMA IMPROVES ACADEMIC PERFORMANCENumerous studies have demonstrated a correlation between drama involvement and academic achievement. In addition to having higher standardized test scores than their peers who do not experience the arts, student who participate in drama often experience improved reading comprehension, maintain better attendance records, and stay generally more engaged in school than their non-arts counterparts. Schools with arts-integrated programs, even in low-income areas, report high academic achievement.DRAMA STUDENTS OUTPERFORM NON-ARTS PEERS ON SAT TESTSThe College Entrance Examination Board reported student scores from 2001, 2002, 2004, and 2005 using data from the Student Description Questionnaire indicating student involvement in various activities, including the arts. As compared to their peers with no arts coursework or involvement:Students involved in drama performance scored an average of 65.5 points higher on the verbal component and 35.5 points higher in the math component of the SATStudents who took courses in drama study or appreciation scored, on average, 55 points higher on verbal and 26 points higher on math than their non-arts classmates.In 2005, students involved in drama performance outscored the national average SAT score by 35 points on the verbal portion and 24 points on the math section.ATTENDANCEResearch indicates that involvement in the arts increases student engagement and encourages consistent attendance, and that drop-out rates correlate with student levels of involvement in the arts. Students considered to be at high risk for dropping out of high school cite drama and other arts classes as their motivations for staying in school.Students who participate in the arts are 3 times more likely to win an award for school attendance than those who do not.READING COMPREHENSIONFrom learning to read to the in-depth study of Shakespearean literature, drama can play a significant role in the continual development of students’ reading comprehension skills. Studies indicate that not only do the performance of a story and a number of other drama activities in the classroom contribute to a student’s understanding of the work performed, but these experiences also help them to develop a better understanding of other works and of language and expression in general.  The results below were gleaned from studies where educators and students alike noticed a difference when drama played a part in their classrooms,A series of studies on the arts and education revealed a consistent causal link between performing texts in the classroom and the improvement of a variety of verbal skills, including especially significant increases in story recall and understanding of written material.Performance of Shakespeare texts helps to improve students’ understanding of other complex texts including science and math material.Drama can improve reading skills and comprehension better than other activities, including discussion.BUILDING SELF-ESTEEM THROUGH DRAMAIn addition to building social and communication skills overall, involvement in drama courses and performance has been shown to improve students’ self-esteem as well as their confidence in their academic abilities.High school students who are highly involved in drama demonstrate an elevated self-concept over those who are not involved .Playwriting original works and dramatic presentation of existing works can help to build the self-esteem and communication skills of high school students.
  • The act of performing can help students and youth recognize their potential for success and improve their confidence .

BRIDGING THE ACHIEVEMENT GAP
Since the implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act, there has been a national focus on closing the “achievement gap” between students of varying abilities, socioeconomic status, and geographies among other factors that may directly or indirectly affect a student’s academic success.  The arts, including drama, address this issue by catering to different styles of learning, and engaging students who might not otherwise take significant interest in academics.  Additionally, research indicates that drama courses and performance have a particularly positive effect on at-risk youth and students with learning disabilities.

  • A study published in Champions of Change (1999) cites theatre arts, including performance, classes, and participation in a drama club, as a source for “gains in reading proficiency, gains in self-concept and motivation, and higher levels of empathy and tolerance towards others” among youth of low socio-economic status .
  • Drama activities can improve and help to maintain social and language skills of students with learning disabilities and remedial readers .
  • Improvisational drama contributes to improved reading achievement and attitude in disadvantaged students

Making a Room Into an Arabian Tent

If your idea of an exotic room decor is an Arabian tent with a canopy overhead, thick carpets underfoot, and lots of comfortable seating and pillows, you can create that look, in resplendent style, with the use of plenty of luxurious fabrics. An authentic or near-to-authentic Arabian tent room will be a true oasis of comfort and serenity, a place for meditation, a nap, or conversation. You can take your design concept as far as you like, but the most convincing treatment will be complete, erasing all vestiges of a modern European or North American (Western culture) room.Capture the flavor of a Middle Eastern tent room with this decorating scheme.Colors

  • Choose your color palette. Your tent room should be filled with a happy melange of colors, all in “jewel” primary color tones like ruby red, amber yellow, lapis or sapphire blue. Balance these colors with off-white or light beige, in generous portions, such as in the “tent” fabrics and wall-to-wall carpeting so these strong primary colors don’t overwhelm the senses.Remove Any Ceiling FixturesTurn off power to the room at the main circuit breaker box if there are any ceiling fixtures or wall sconces in the room. Since you will be upholstering the ceilings and walls with fabric, you won’t be able to use these lighting fixtures again for safety reasons. Remove all of these light fixtures. Cap off all the wires in the electrical boxes with plastic electrical nuts and close all the boxes with metal plate covers. If you intend to install a new Arabian-looking light fixture, like a Moroccan lantern, in the center of the ceiling, extend these the fixture wires approximately 8 to 12 inches below the electrical box. Cap these wires off, temporarily, with electrical nuts. Restore power to the room.Tent the CeilingCover the ceiling with pleated fabric to form a “tent canopy” overhead. Begin with a section of fabric and staple one end to a point that marks the center of the ceiling. Stay clear of the area where the ceiling light fixture electrical box might have been located: staple the fabric around this hole, approximately 2 inches away from the hole, and avoid contact with the capped off electrical wires as you do this, if they are present. Gather the fabric with your fingers to form loose pleats as you staple. Extend the length of the fabric to the place where the wall meets the ceiling, directly opposite your starting point on the ceiling. Pull the fabric tight. Staple this end of the fabric to a point on the wall that is approximately 12 inches below the ceiling line to create a gentle, sloped effect. Continue to gather the fabric to form the pleats as you staple this end to the wall. Install a second section of fabric alongside the first section, starting at the center of the ceiling and working out toward the corresponding area on the opposite wall. Overlap the two side-by-side sections by 2 inches so the seam between the two sections is somewhat masked. Work all the way around the room, section by section, until the ceiling is completely covered with pleated fabric.Create a round ceiling medallion, cut out of 3/4 inch plywood, that is large enough to cover the place where the fabric has been stapled to the center of the ceiling. Drill a hole through the center of this medallion to accomodate the light fixture wires if you intend to install a hanging light here. Mount this medallion securely to the ceiling with molly bolts. Decorate the medallion with paint or upholster it with more of the ceiling fabric: do this only after installing a hanging light fixture from the medallion if that is in your plans.Optional: Install an appropriate ceiling light fixture such as a Moroccan hanging lantern. The larger the lantern the better. Turn off power to the room at the circuit box. Mount the fixture to the plywood ceiling medallionand connect the fixture using the capped wires. Restore power to the room and test the fixture.Tent the WallsLine the walls with lengths of fabric. Use the same material employed in the ceiling, or a slightly different or darker fabric for contrast. Staple the fabric, loosely pleating it as you go, to long strips of 1-inch-by-2-inch lumber. Wrap the fabric around the wood and staple it on the back side of the wooden strip so the staples won’t show. Staple the top end of the fabric to a strip of wood, and then staple the bottom end of the fabric to another strip of wood to form one wall “panel” of fabric with a top and a bottom wooden “rail.” Raise the top rail and place it against the wall so it covers over the stapled ends of the ceiling “tent.” Nail or screw the rail to the wall here. Align the bottom rail at floor level and nail or screw it to the wall as well. Repeat this until you have covered all the wall surfaces from floor to ceiling, even over windows. Try to place fabric over any windows in such a way that two sections overlap at the windows: you will be able to part the fabric with your hands when you need to reach and operate the windows. It helps to start by installing two fabric sections at the window locations and working around the room from there to be sure two sections come together at the windows. Install short “filler” panels over the tops of doors; don’t cover the doors.Remove any doors in the room and replace them with heavy velvet curtains. Mount the curtains on cafe curtain rods installed inside the door jambs.Carpet the FloorsCarpet the room if it is not already carpeted, wall to wall. A neutral or “sand” tone is best. Add layers upon layers of Oriental or Arabian carpets and rugs, one over the other. Two or three layers of different carpets are typical. These carpets should each be different in design and coloring.Furnishings and AccentsFurnish the room with a ring of comfortable low couches and masses of pillows of all sizes. Traditional Western furniture is acceptable but wall-to-wall couches is the look you want. Pepper the room with small tables with round or octagonal tops, all placed in front of the couches, not at the ends. The wood finish on these tables should be a dark red mahogany.Decorate with Middle Eastern accent pieces, including mosaics, brass vessels, and tapestries. Remember that depictions of human beings are not acceptable art subjects in Middle Eastern design so stick with art based on Middle Eastern design patterns and animals.

Arabian Nights Party Decoration Ideas

Arabian Nights-themed parties are rare compared to more common themes like toga parties or generic Halloween parties. That means there’s a great opportunity to create a truly memorable night with a smart decoration scheme. The best part about Arabian themes is that they’re flexible thanks to a plethora of options: you can pull it off with almost any budget.Arabian Nights Party Decoration IdeasDécor

  • The first thing to do is find fabric from a fabric or decoration store that you can hang from the ceiling or drape in doorways. Sheer see-through fabric works best for Arabian Nights parties.Beyond fabric, tents are also worth looking into, and can work for both inside and outside parties. And around the party floor, it’s smart to have as many throw rugs, cushions or bean bag chairs as possible. Many households have a beanbag chair buried somewhere; ask your friends to round some up.MoodTo enhance the Arabian mood, there are two big guns you could pull out, depending on how expensive you want to go or how much of a mess you want to make. The first is sand, sprinkled liberally throughout the party area. The second is a smoke machine. Combined with tents, rugs, and beanbags, it creates a terrific “Arabian luxury” atmosphere. A much easier trick that does a lot to enhance the mood is to play Middle Eastern music, which you can find online or at any big music store.PropsPastel-colored fabric and décor and gold-colored props or fake rubies provide great accents. Dig up some old tacky jewelry or any fake gold. A cheap, effective option is to buy chocolate coins that come in gold-colored foil wrapping; sprinkle them throughout your food table or centerpieces.Oil lamps, incense, and hookahs can get expensive but look quite authentic. Empty wine bottles or teapots decorated in gold paint can double as “magic lamps.” Hula hoops and arm bracelets can be found easily. And if it’s a party for kids, they’ll enjoy scimitar-shaped cardboard swords covered in foil or gold paint

The Best Insurance Writing Service Owned by Nancy Germond

Do you like writing? You might like to write, but you do not know how to write correctly. Everyone can write, but to write in a good way, you have to learn first. If necessary, you should seek a training service to learn to be a good writer if you want to write your own, or you can use the services of a copy writer to help you. If you want to have some training from a writing service or using copywriter service, you can contact Nancy Germond as the owner of the insurance writing service. What is the Insurance writer and how do we work?

Insurance writing service is a writing service that serves the consulting, training, and copy writing services with a satisfaction guarantee. Why should you choose our Insurance writing service? Here are some reasons why you should choose our services.

  1. We provide consultation. By having a consultation with us, then you will get some advantages such as claim audits and pre-audit assistance for MGAs and carriers, agency / Brokerage claims assistance, expert witness, policy and procedures development, return to Work program assistance and intervention, and many more. You can have any kinds of consultation regarding your business, writing, and etc.
  2. We provide training services. We can provide training to the members of your organization. We offer training services such as customer service training skills for the insurance professional, brain drain – managing your company changing talent landscape, employment issues, leadership – becoming a values-centered leader, management coaching, societal trends – where America is heading and how it will impact your organization’s future, and many more. By having our training service, it means that you will get more skills in doing several things where can support your business very well.
  3. We provide Copy writing service. we can write a variety of materials to suit your needs such as, annual reports, brochure development, business writing, PowerPoint presentations, ghostwriting, financial research and reporting, corporate communications, advertising copy, medical writing, curriculum and seminar development, public relations writing, speech writing, direct mail copy, editorial assistance, legal writing, press releases, procedural manuals, proofreading, research, veterinary specialties: equine and canine, and White papers. We can writer all of those kinds of writing excellently because Insurance writer has Nancy as the professional writer who has a lot of experience.
  4. Insurance writing service can ensure your satisfaction up to 100% when you get service from us. Since we have been running this business for many years. So you will never feel disappointed with the best service from us. You can give us your testimonials about the service if it is needed so that it can inspire anyone else who wants to use our service.
  5. Nancy is one of the most trusted and respected professionals within the copy writing and writing insurance industries and she can help train your staff on how to write better advertising, legal docs, letter, and many more. Thus, if your staffs are trained already, so they will have a capability in making some ads or legal documents by their own.

Those are a few reasons why you should choose Nancy as your partner in consulting, training, copy writing services. With a lot of experience owned by Nancy, it can be said that our service is very good and reliable. So, you don’t need to doubt the Insurance writing service because all of the people have tried to use the service and they all feel satisfied. However, insurance writing service is not selling an insurance.

In summary, you may be confused with your staff where they are not able to write something well because of lack of training. Therefore, you can use our training services where we will train your employees to be able to write and make a writing product well. Thus, they will be able to make an interesting review of your company’s products. Or if you really need a more professional writing, you can also use the services of our writer, where Nancy will handle all the content properly. Or you can also consult about your business or about your writing, all can be covered very well. Therefore, contact our Insurance writing service immediately and get what you expect.

Tips for Purchasing a Commercial Refrigerator

Purchasing a commercial refrigerator is not something many of us need to do on a regular basis, which is why it is always a good idea to seek some expert advice on the topic. Because it is so uncommon, we have put together a list of tips you can keep in mind when shopping around for the best unit for your business.Brand MattersIf what you seek is a reliable unit that will be easy to service and will be backed by a strong manufacturer’s warranty, then you will want to choose a commercial fridge produced by a reputable brand. Some of the best brands in the business include:

  • Bromic
  • Delfield
  • Koldtech
  • SkopeDouble-Check the WarrantyAs touched upon briefly above, the warranty which comes with your commercial refrigerator will be a huge determinant in whether you choose that brand and type of fridge or not. Like everything in life, nothing lasts forever, and even the best quality refrigerators will need service. When your refrigerator does happen to need some extra care and attention, you will want your unit to be fixed quickly for business continuity and to ensure your food items do not spoil.Do not settle for just any warranty on your refrigerator. The commercial refrigeration industry is one which has some of the most extensive warranties available, with many offering three years or greater parts and labour coverage. These warranties are often backed by a large network of local certified technicians who will be able to get your refrigerator up and running as quickly as possible, should you experience any problems.Choose the Best Size for TomorrowChoosing the right size of refrigerator is one of the most difficult choices for a business owner to make. On the one hand, you want to conserve as much square footage as possible in your business and do not want to purchase a fridge which will drain you of unnecessary energy costs. On the other hand, however, you do not want to purchase a refrigerator that your business will quickly outgrow.In addition to the actual dimensions of the fridge, you will also have to consider other items, such as:Do you want a drawer or reach-in refrigerator?If you want a reach-in refrigerator, do you prefer a one-door, two-door, or three-door configuration?Will the refrigerator fit through your doorways?Consider Where the Condenser Will Be SituatedOne often overlooked part of purchasing a commercial refrigerator is where the condenser will be located. The condenser is the working horse of your refrigerator, being responsible for keeping all of the products within it nice and cold. You will typically have two options for the condenser’s location:Bottom-mountTop-mountBottom-mount units are easier to clean and maintain, typically allow for greater accessibility to your food, and they are not as much of a strain in warmer conditions. But do not rule out top-mount configurations, either. These do not trap nearly as much dust and debris, and they do not blow hot air into the cabinet.

Chocolate Banana Naturally Sweet Ice Cream

Naturally Sweet Ice Cream recipe - just three simple ingredients and no ice cream maker required! Refined sugar free, dairy free, loaded with chocolate banana and peanut butter flavor! | pinchofyum.com
Ingredients
  • 4 bananas, peeled, cut into chunks, and frozen
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa or similar, like 2 packets The Daily Good Greens Chocolate
  • a few tablespoons of water
  • 1 chocolate bar, such as SuperFoods Chocolate, chopped into small pieces
  • peanut butter and sea salt for toppingInstructionsLet the bananas soften for a while at room temperature or in the microwave. You don’t want them to be rock hard because they’ll take a toll on your food processor or blender, but you don’t want them to be soft because you’ll get more of a smoothie texture. They should be frozen but starting to soften on the outside.Pulse the bananas in a food processor until smooth. This is a heavy duty task – a blender can do it, but it’s going to need some help (a few stirs here and there) to move through the blender smoothly.Dissolve the cocoa in the water to allow it to incorporate into the ice cream better. Add the chocolate paste to the food processor and puree again until incorporated.Stir in the chocolate bits and anything else you might like – vanilla, sea salt, etc. Serve topped with drizzled peanut butter!Notes
    For the nutrition information, I used standard cocoa powder and 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, since we don’t have the exact numbers for the ALOHA products in our database.

Orange-Earl Grey Iced Tea

Orange-Earl Grey Iced TeaMakes: 8 servings, about 1 cup eachActive Time: Total Time: Ingredients1/4 cup loose Earl Grey tea, or 12 Earl Grey tea bagsPeel of 1 orange, plus orange wedges for garnish4 cups boiling water3/4 cup orange juice1/4 cup sugar4 cups cold waterPreparationSteep loose tea (or tea bags) and orange peel in boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes.Strain the tea (or remove tea bags and orange peel) and pour into a large pitcher. Stir in orange juice and sugar until the sugar is dissolved. Add cold water. Refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours. Serve over ice with orange wedges, if desired.Tips & NotesMake Ahead Tip: Refrigerate for up to 1 week.NutritionPer serving: 35 calories; 0 g fat (0 g sat, 0 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 9 g carbohydrates; 0 g protein; 0 g fiber; 5 mg sodium; 67 mg potassium.Carbohydrate Servings: 1/2Exchanges: 1/2 carbohydrate (other

Best Ever Tropical Fruit Salad

http://theslowroasteditalian-printablerecipe.blogspot.com/2014/05/orange-honey-rainbow-fruit-salad.html

MAKES 12 Cups  |  ACTIVE TIME 25 Min  |  TOTAL TIME 25 Min

12 mandarin oranges, divided (for dressing and salad)
2 cup strawberries, sliced
1 pineapple, cut into bite size chunks
5 kiwi, sliced
3 mangoes, cut into bite size chunks

Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing
1 medium lemon
1 lime
1/4 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon Gourmet Garden Ginger Paste or fresh grated ginger
1/2 teaspoon poppy seedsWash and dry lemon, lime and 2 mandarin oranges. Zest the washed and dried citrus with a zester or fine grater. Add to 1 cup measuring cup or small bowl. Cut each in half and squeeze the juice into the measuring cup. (You should get about 1/2 cup juice).  Add honey, ginger and poppy seeds to juice mixture and whisk until combined.  Set aside or place in the refrigerator if serving later.Prepare remaining fruit. Slice strawberries and kiwi. Section remaining oranges. Cut pineapple and mango into bite size chunks. Place fruit in a large bowl. Pour dressing on top of fruit about 30 minutes before serving. Gently toss to coat. Serve and enjoy!COOK’S NOTE:  This fruit salad is fabulous with whatever you have on hand. I love carambola (star fruit) and papaya in this salad as well. Bananas are lovely, but have to be added at the last minute or they will get soft and not look pretty.

Beef Taco’s of America

Quick and easy to make, and the tacos taste much better than fast food. You can adjust the spices to your liking, if necessary, and top with your favorite garnishes, such as cheese, lettuce, tomato, onions, sour cream, etc. Enjoy!

Ingredients Nutrition

4 US
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 12 teaspoon oregano
  • 14 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • salt
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 12 cup canned tomato sauce (I use Hunt’s)
  • 12 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon light brown sugar
  • 8 taco shellsDirections
  1. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat until simmering.
  2. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the garlic, spices, and 1 teaspoon salt.
  4. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  5. Stir in the ground beef.
  6. Cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.
  7. Stir in the tomato sauce, broth, vinegar, and sugar.
  8. Simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes.
  9. Season with salt to taste.
  10. Divide the filling evenly among taco shells and serve, passing any desired accompaniments separately.

Retail Solutions Advisors offers quality commercial property management services

 

When you’ve bought Commercial Property in order to increase your investments, something you might not have counted on is the sheer work involved with Property Management. Whether for good or ill, commercial property ownership doesn’t stop with the purchase – it has only just begun. If you are truly unprepared for this development, you could have just lost money instead of gaining a good investment and how you deal with that is going to affect your ROI for some time to come. It might be a great idea to team up with a firm that provides property management services. Doing this lets experts take care of the details you might lose to the cracks in your own knowledge base.

The best firm going for property management in the state of Florida is Retail Solutions Advisors, hands down. The laundry list of services they provide for commercial real estate is impressive on its own, but when you dig a little deeper into each category, well that is when you will know you picked a winner. When it comes to property management they go even further than above and beyond to get the job done. As an example, let’s list some of the factors you need to think about with property management so you can get a feeling for scope.

You need to think about the condition of the property – from building to parking lot – everything needs to be evaluated to ensure it is up to code, can support the technology tenants will demand, is clean and free of obvious or excessive dirt/stains/broken elements, and is safe and secure for tenants coming and going. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. There is marketing the building to put it in front of potential retailers who’d want to be there doing business – if no one knows you have the space to lease out, they’re aren’t going to come.

You need to perform regular maintenance on the building to keep everything in working order, clean, and secure – no one is going to rent and stay in a building where the plumbing is dodgy or the alarm system doesn’t work. And customers for the retailers who lease from you aren’t going to come, or come back, or recommend others come, if the property is unattractive, dirty or in a general state of disrepair.

Are you wishing you’d not bought that shopping center yet? Seriously, don’t despair. When you have Retail Solutions Advisors in your corner, all your concerns can fade to black because they have you and your property in their capable hands. Over 100 years of combined experience in commercial real estate is what you get with Retail Solutions Advisors – they know what you and your property need, and they can get the jobs done, no problem. Dealing with development on the property and contractors and inspectors? No problem. Dealing with tenants leasing agreements? No problem.

Property management is just simply no problem for the experts from Retail Solutions Advisors. This isn’t just their job, it’s their passion and when you do what you love you do it better than anyone else. Get your property management taken care of with Retail Solutions Advisors.

If you have Commercial Property, you need the
Property Management services offered by Retail Solutions Advisors. Call or click today.

 

Fried Lamb Burger

If you like hamburgers and want a little variation with some kick, fried lamb burgers are for you. The lamb is very tender and the spices really flatter the meat. You can serve this on pita, a bun, or as I prefer, on a kaiser or sourdough roll.Ingredients1 lb ground lamb

1/4 cup fresh, chopped parsley(without stems)1 large onion, chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oilPrep Time: 10 minutesCook Time: 10 minutesTotal Time: 20 minutesPreparationIn a medium bowl, combine flour, parsley, spices, onion, salt, and pepper. Add meat with a wooden spoon or hands and begin to mix together.In a small bowl beat the eggs, and then add to meat and spice mixture. Mix together. Form into patties.In a skillet or frying pan, pour in oil and bring heat to a medium high. Cook each patty for about 1-4 minutes each side until golden brown and crispy.Serve with or without bun and bread

9 Rules for Accessorizing Your Wedding Dress

 Silver and pink bridal accessories1. Match Your MetalsYou may not realize this, but some metals look better with certain dress colors. As a general rule, ivory is best paired with gold since it highlights the creamy tint of the fabric. For a pure white dress, choose accents in silver or platinum or with pearl detailing—gold may clash with brighter white hues. You can have your pick with a diamond-white gown—this barely off-white color looks amazing with yellow gold, rose gold, silver or pearls. If the dress you chose is already embellished with beadwork, let that dictate the colors of your accessories. For example, if your gown has silver beading, pick a necklace, bracelet or earrings with a silver base.
 2. Remember: Less Is MoreYou don’t need a veil, tiara, earrings, necklace and a sash. Accessories add a unique touch to your look, but even one too many can be over-the-top with an already-embellished gown. Before you start buying, take an inventory of your gown’s stand-out features and then base your choices around them. If your dress has an ornate neckline, opt for a pair of drop earrings instead of a necklace (that might look too busy). For a gown with a simpler style, try a bold statement necklace or a fascinator. When it comes to earrings, take a cue from your hairstyle. If you’re leaving your hair down and over your ears, small studs or drops will do. But for an updo, you might want something a little more dramatic, like a pair of chandelier danglers. And lastly, it’s always a good idea to avoid designs that closely mimic the embellishments on your gown—you don’t want to look too matchy-matchy.3. Know Your VeilsThe veil is the iconic bridal accessory. From flirty birdcages and ornate mantillas to regal cathedral-length styles, there’s no shortage of options. But there are a few things you should keep in mind as you narrow down the type of veil you plan to wear:You’ll want your veil to match the exact shade of your gown. Color blocking is better left to your day-to-day look.Be mindful when choosing a style. If your dress has a lot going on, stick with something simple that won’t steal the spotlight.
  • If showing off the back of your dress is a must—say you have gorgeous embroidery or beading—choose a sheer veil rather than one with two layers of tulle.
  • Consider your size: Longer waltz or floor-length veils will elongate a petite frame while mid-length styles, like fingertip or elbow-length veils, can visually cut you in half, making them a better pick for taller brides. Short styles, like a birdcage or bandeau, work for all shapes and sizes and lend a fun, retro vibe to your gown.4. Top It OffVeils not really your thing? From combs to fascinators, there are plenty of other ways to top off your look. Choose your hairstyle before you pick your accessory, since some types will look better with updos than others. A flower crown, for example, is best with loose locks. You should also consider your hair type—dainty accessories may be perfect for fine hair, but won’t be as noticeable with thick waves. Most importantly, make sure whatever you pick feels secure while you’re moving around.5. Think Beyond EarringsLooking for a super-simple way to add a bit of personality to your wedding dress (and help create the illusion of curves)? Add a belt or sash. Just because your dress doesn’t come with one, doesn’t mean it won’t look great—a fashionable fastener is an easy way to customize your gown and change its look without having to make expensive alterations. And whether you go with a classic satin sash or a metallic leather belt, it’ll give your dress an instant upgrade. The key to choosing the right waist-cincher is to find one that works with your body type. Thin belts are best suited to short torsos, while wider belts work well with longer ones. If you’re an apple shape, think about a beaded or heavily embellished belt to flatter your midsection. If you’re petite, a belt with V-shape appliqué will elongate your body. As a general rule, stick with a style that’s no more than three-inches wide—you don’t want to overpower the rest of your gown.6. Keep It ComfyNo outfit is complete without the perfect pair of shoes—and your wedding day look is no exception. Of course you’ll want a killer pair to go with that gorgeous dress, but that doesn’t mean you have to compromise on comfort. Don’t forget: You’ll be standing for long periods of time, and you don’t want to be cringing in pain before you’ve even hit the dance floor. While shopping, consider the height of the heel (obviously the taller you go, the higher the pain potential), the type of straps and the material. Your feet need to be well supported (think: ankle and toe straps over slip-ons) to avoid instability. Look for high quality, natural materials. They’re infinitely more comfortable than synthetic ones and are also a lot more durable, meaning you’ll be able to wear them again.For the best fit, go shopping at the end of the day, when your feet are swollen from activity, and give yourself plenty of time to break in your new kicks before the wedding. Wear them around the house a couple weeks prior to the day, noting any areas that are prone to blisters. To make your shoes more comfortable, consider buying moleskin, heel grips, strap stickers or gel insoles designed specifically for heels. Shoes too strappy to conceal an insole or grip? Pick up a spray, wax or cream that protects against friction or provides anti-inflammatory pain relief to keep your feet happy.7. Cover It UpA stylish cover-up is a must if you’re getting married during the cooler months or at a house of worship that requires you to cover your shoulders. From boleros to capelets and fur stoles, the options are endless. The key is to choose one that strikes the perfect balance with your gown. Simple, understated styles can be paired with more embellished cover-ups, like a beaded capelet with scalloped edges or a bold sequined or feather bolero for added personality. For already ornate gowns, try a more minimal accent to avoid looking too over-the-top. A delicate lace jacket, sheer tulle cape or a chiffon wrap will keep you warm without competing with your gown. Another option? A classic cardigan, the perfect complement to a rustic or more laid-back affair.8. Consider Your DécolletagePairing your neckline style with the proper adornment can add character to your wedding gown, or even highlight a unique feature. Follow these simple guidelines:Sweetheart or strapless: For something a little different, skip the necklace and focus on an elegant pair of chandelier earrings instead. Wear clear crystal for a sleek look, or add punch with a hint of color. Try using a meaningful gem, like your birthstone, or pick a hue from the flowers in your bridal bouquet. If you’re going for a flirty, fresh look, include two or three small fresh or silk flowers in your hair to add a soft, organic feel. Vintage elegance more your style? Pay homage to the past with an art-deco-style bracelet or some Roaring Twenties–inspired feather barrettes.V-neck: Whether you opt for a pendant or a choker, this style begs for a little décolletage decoration. A thin chain with a simple pendant, like a locket, is an elegant way to accessorize, while pearls (single- or double-stranded) are always a classic choice. If you’re going for a more decadent look, a crystal choker or statement necklace with matching earrings could be the perfect combo.Halter or reverse halter: For this shoulder-baring style, skip the necklace and focus on dressing up your tresses. Headbands are a great way to add panache to your wedding updo, be it a sleek bun or a loose ponytail. But if headbands aren’t quite your style, try adding some sparkle to your hair with intricate crystal hairpins. If you’ve got a curly mane, five to seven hairpins is the perfect number, while brides with thinner locks (or shorter hair) need fewer—just two or three pins will do the trick9. Stick to What You KnowAlthough it’s a special day, don’t stray too far from your normal style. If you rarely wear jewels, there’s no need to drown yourself in diamonds on your wedding day. The goal is to look like the best, most beautiful version of your regular self.

Fashion shopping- Join the roller coaster ride

Shopping is more than a practicality or a hobby for some females. It will not be wrong to call it an obsession. Online fashion shopping in the current times has turned into a phenomenon the world over. The ease and convenience it provides to one has truly made it amongst the finest inventions in present times. Majority of the people who are fashion-obsessed especially women aspire in having an exclusive fashion statement that is unique and also makes one appear outstanding and impressive. It is this fashion aspiration that has greatly lived up to via different fashion brands and designers, as they have something innovative always and something original in every creation. Here is the reason behind the increasing recognition of designer fashion shopping that has turned progressively into leading choice of the fashion forwarded people.Fashion and luxury are two vital sectors which have successfully created a forte especially in the e-commerce market. It is the females who are the ultimate shopaholics, no wonder they take immense pleasure in the trends of e-shopping via a simple mouse click. Lucrative prices, festive offers and alluring discounts make fashion shopping online a pleasurable experience. With an aim for preserving their customer base, such shopping stores keep providing special promotional activities. There are numerous fashion shopping sites today floating in the market that provide several choices for the clients. Now there is no requirement for visiting any shopping malls or designer boutiques but one can simply login to the desired shopping website and purchase clothes online.The modern, busy corporate females can hardly find time to step out to shop for her while at the same time she cannot let go her shopping desires too. Here the finest key to this dilemma definitely are the online shopping stores. Such stores prove to be a convenient mode to shop every kind of fashion apparels and accessories. The present net savvy females today with just a few clicks can own the best collections devoid of having to go out of either their office or home premises. These online fashion shops offer descriptions, measurements and pictures of every product which makes it really hassle free to shop clothing and accessories. Here the buyer just requires in knowing his/her size and they are all set in indulging in good quality shopping.Dressing style for both men and women undergo a change following the change in trends. The question that immediately strikes one’s mind is how they can become aware about the latest trends. Shopping from retail stores or shopping malls will not be of much help because store owners often have the tendency of trying to sell old stuffs prior to bringing new ones. Thus the finest solution here is to go for shopping online because it is here where one along with getting their favourite outfits will also be offered with intriguing suggestions which will aid them dress even better.Fashion and women since ages have been walking on the same road together. When it comes to fashion, women posses in depth reach and thus there are countless trends and styles launched for them from time to time as well as cstrings underwear for men

Hefty size styling tips for blokes

Few of us are ever fulfilled by our weight. Whether you’ve as of late put on a couple pounds, or you’ve battled with abundance weight for quite a while, the way that you dress can have a genuine effect by they way you look and feel. Picking garments that have the right development, fit and shading for your shape and size can make you seem neater and more trim while helping you to feel more certain and calm. Whenever that you go looking for garments, remember the accompanying tips to offer you select clothing that will some assistance with having you looking and feeling your best!The Basics to Keep in Mind When Shopping for Any Article of ClothingNotwithstanding which piece of attire that you happen to be looking for, in the event that you are bearing abundance weight, you will need to pick apparel that underlines a solid, vertical line to offer you some assistance with appearing taller, and slimmer. Abstain from anything that cuts off the vertical line that you are attempting to make with your apparel.Brilliant, lighter hues attract consideration regarding the body and make it appear to be bigger and more conspicuous. Darker hues, for example, dark, naval force, charcoal and burgundy are all hues that cover up imperfections and will help you to look slimmer.Materials that tie or wrinkle will likewise attract consideration regarding undesirable bends and overabundance pounds, so pick fabrics that wrap effortlessly, oppose wrinkling and hold their shape. In cooler climate, run with lighter acrylics and fleeces that will keep you warm without including mass.Pants – Fitted is Best!Each extraordinary outfit expands upon a solid establishment – the jeans! The best decision for a heavier casing is straight leg pants. This sort of jeans is as wide at the thigh as they are at the lower leg, which gives the eye one consistent line to take after, drawing it upward.Stay away from jeans that have creases or additional pockets, which will likewise interfere with the straight line. Verify that your jeans fit at the broadest piece of your body, and have the abundance taken up by a tailor. Pants that fit too freely or that have loads of pockets and creases will just add mass to your edge and make you show up heavier.Why V-Necks and Stripes Are the Best for Shirts and TopsKeep away from T-Shirts, tops, jumpers and shirts that don’t fit. Wearing tops that are either too enormous or too little will just make you seem bigger than you really are. Keep away from occupied prints, wide even stripes, plaids and scratches that will slash off the vertical line and make you show up heavier.Strong hues, pin stripes and V-necks will all stress that solid, vertical line that you are attempting to make so that your outline is prolonged and seems more slender. Polos and oxfords in darker hues are additionally great decisions on the grounds that their fitted development extends a leaner casing, and you can simply leave the main few catches open for solace while as yet looking perfect and trim.Once you’ve picked your shirt, keep in mind that wearing it tucked in will likewise help you to seem more slender and neater. Pick a shirt that fits well from the tall segment of the store if your middle is somewhat long so that the shirt will fit when you take a seat or move around. Continuously wear a belt when you wear your shirt tucked in for a neater look.Top it off with an awesome fitting overcoatA coat that fits well and is made of solid, quality materials is an unquestionable requirement to bind together your look and pull the outfit together. For the best results, pick a solitary breasted overcoat to draw consideration far from your mid-section and waist. The coat ought to fit all around ok so that the greater part of the catches can be affixed. Regardless of whether you wear it fastened the distance, or permit it to hang open on your casing, it will cover those abundance pounds around the midsection.If you feel you need help, hire a personal Stylist and do a Personal Shopper visit in Melbourne.Since you know the nuts and bolts, you ought to be prepared to go looking for garments that underscore your best elements while expanding your certainty and solace. On the off chance that you think you may require some assistance in selecting the best garments for your body shape, call me. I will joyfully do an individual style discussion with you and make the entire procedure smooth and pleasant.

9 Tips on how to get along with roommates

When buying a room in an apartment, you may have many questions, which we have realtors to help us cope with. However, after signing a contract, a tenant should try to get along with other owners of an apartment and sometimes it is not that easy.

That is why we give you 9 useful tips on how to live in peace and harmony with your roommates. In addition, you can check out a great post to learn what type of roommate you can encounter.

Tip 1. Everyone should be equal. Do not be arrogant and do not brag to neighbors of the achievements in your career, personal life etc.

Tip 2. Both men and women should keep their mouths shut and avoid gossips. Here is one simple rule: “Do not talk about your neighbors if you do not want them to talk about you.”

Tip 3. Do not share the joys of your personal life with your neighbors, since every word you say can be used against you. If you shared a secret with your neighbors concerning how you spent the evening in the company of a young man/woman, and in the morning, you left dirty dishes in the sink, your whole story will come back to you like a boomerang in a negative sense.

Tip 4. People of different nationalities can live in your apartment, therefore this topic too should not be discussed in conversations with the roommates.

Tip 5. In addition, roommates do not like those who talk too loudly. For them, a loud voice or a loud conversation means that a person is very arrogant and thinks only about themselves and no one likes such people. In addition, those people who like watching TV at night or listening to loud music should be quieter since after a sleepless night, you might be woken up by a person who loves to wake up early.

Tip 6. Be patient to children and the noise they make. Making remarks to their parents is useless, because they already do their best to soothe their babies, and your comments or reproaches will be in vain.

Tip 7. Do not hurry to have pets in the apartment because there is probably not much space in it already. The smell of a cat is strong and soon it will spread throughout the apartment, where there is so little air. In general, it is better to consult with the neighbors first and find out whether they have allergies or something like that.

Tip 8. You should not play mean tricks with your roommates, as your endless mutual sabotage will bring you to insomnia, depression, and, eventually, to a nervous breakdown resulting in you not winning.

Tip 9. Do not keep big things like bicycles, disused furniture in places like kitchen, hallway, bathroom and bathroom so that you do not prevent people from walking freely in an apartment. Use storage rentals instead.

Try to live happily and peacefully, be kind to your roommates, and they will treat you the same way!

Goth Costume Ideas

Dark hair and light skin are hallmarks of goth fashion.

Goth costumes tie in well to Halloween because of the inherent link between the holiday and the color black and the fantasy of goth culture. Whether authentic tributes to history’s gothic period or an homage to the youth movement, goth costumes can transition from Halloween to nightclub or party hopping easily.

Fetish Fashion

  • Both men and women wear fetish gear such as cuffs, chokers and vinyl or leather pants. Men can wear fishnet tops with or without a layer underneath or a vest on top. Women may wear fishnet hosiery and visible lingerie such as corsets or slips. Make your own costume pieces from scraps of leather cut to the size of your neck or wrists with snaps or ties glued to the ends for fastening. Women can create a simple tulle slip by gathering a length of tulle with a long machine stitch and inserting an elastic waistband at the top. Wear it under a short skirt with fishnet tights and black boots.

Makeup

  • For both guys and girls, goth makeup usually includes paling the face and darkening lips and eyes. Influenced by vampire myth, goth makeup normally consists of white, black, dark reds and sometimes fantasy colors such as violet or blue. Apply the makeup more dramatically than would be used during daily wear. Use black eyeliner thickly around the eye and lashes. Use dark blood-red lipstick, or black.

Shoes

  • When accessorizing your goth costume, wear shoes that complete the look. For both sexes, combat boots look great, especially with multiple rivets and buckles. Girls can wear heels with buckles or studs, and guys may wear a heavy dress shoe in black. Take a pair of shoes you already own and can afford to sacrifice and glue on spikes or studs. Canvas high- and low-top tennis shoes that come in whimsical colors or patterns may add a splash of color to an otherwise all-black costume or contrast with hosiery or pants colors. Add neon or black laces to a pair you already own.

Hair

  • Dye your hair for a goth costume using black, dark blue or plum temporary hair color. Coordinate your hair color with your clothes, or use a color that suits your character. As an alternative to dying your entire head, use streaks of fantasy colors such as purple, bright red or neon pink. Both men and women may spike hair up or wear it down close to the face, flattened over the eyes. A girl can wear her hair in a half-up style, down on the front and sides with a spiky ponytail on top.

Dress

  • Women can wear crushed velvet skirts or tops with trench coats. Thrift and vintage stores sometimes carry these items. Purchase something that fits and dye it black at home, or add studs, zippers or chains as trim. Men wear baggy slacks, sometimes with zippers or change. The pants can be black or red or other colors. Wear a white shirt on top with a pinstripe vest

The factual benefits of windows replacement

A lot of homeowners wait to investigate windows replacement until there are clear indications of window breakdown. For some people, the upholding for older wood windows can become too much of an irritation. As a result, a lot of windows are stuck shut, whether from their age or manifold coats of paint. Take into account that lots of older windows are single-pane and are short of shades or coating. Consequently, they can increase energy bills by letting in heat throughout the summertime and permitting ambient heat to get away all through the winter. There is as well the cost of preservation for older window frames, particularly wood ones. Even though new windows can induce in energy and maintenance savings, it’s almost not possible to state the usual payback project for windows replacement in Red Deer or other cities might produce.

However there are other motives to think about replacement windows as well as problems that are visibly understandable. Take into account that homeowners need to examine window options to guarantee that your new replacement window purchase will put in more comfort and pleasure to your house. Benefits of Airdrie windows replacement include:

  • Lower energy costs: Well-insulated windows take your home apart from severe exterior temperatures, lessening changes obligatory by your heating and cooling system. This can frequently transform into lower energy costs.
  • Light: Natural light makes any chore more enjoyable. These days’ replacement windows have smaller frames and larger glass facade that permit more light come into your house in Red Deer.
  • Performance: Windows are the keystone of your house’s visual attention, both inside and from the curb. In addition, windows can add an outstanding attribute and crucial point to your home.
  • UV protection: Windows with UV protection safeguard in opposition to damage that can happen to inside walls, floors and furniture from solar heat and unsafe rays.
  • Air flow: Windows can boost airflow and ventilation, making better the comfort and health of your house in Red Deer.
  • Noise lessening: first-class, correctly fitting windows lessen outside noise and amplify privacy.
  • Easy preservation: Homeowners have benefit from developments made in window design, equipment and manufacturing. These days’ windows are well-constructed, simple to clean and long-lasting.

Keep in your mind that your windows may be showing revealing signs of breakdown such as fogging or wood putrefying, however there are extra benefits of replacing your windows as well as noise reduction and UV protection. In addition, a well-researched window purchase can even pay you back in more ways than expected.

The costs of new windows as well will be different with the method of window replacement selected. The most great is the whole tear-out, in which everything — window, frame and sash are removed. A less-insidious approach is to leave the frame in its place, however pick it up with a panning system or trim. It is up to you what method to choose for Airdrie windows replacement in your house. However, be sure that this is the most appropriate one for your budget and home.

How Can I Become a High Fashion Model?

High fashion models need to know how to pose and walk.
Like any other profession, fashion modeling has basic requirements. Both male and female high fashion models tend to be tall, have striking bone structure, a fit figure and few if any scars or blemishes. A person with all of these physical traits is not, however, guaranteed a job as a high fashion model. An aspiring model must learn about the industry and be proactive about meeting the people who could make her dream career a reality.

Instructions

  1. Study high fashion models. Peruse fashion magazines, past and present, and take note of how successful and well-known models carry themselves, connect with the camera and interact with other people and objects in the picture. Also, study video footage of runway shows to see how established models walk.
  2. Practice poses and walks. Tyra.com, a beauty and lifestyle website founded by supermodel Tyra Banks, encourages all aspiring models to get in front of a full-length mirror and practice different poses, facial expressions and walks. Perfect your movements so that when you are in front of the camera, you are relaxed and prepared.
  3. Participate in local fashion shows. Audition for fashion shows at local schools, malls and special events. Practice your walk, poses and facial expressions at these events.
  4. Dress everyday as if you will be meeting an agent. Apply minimal make-up, if any, and dress in a stylish, but not over-the-top, fashion. Present yourself as a polished, confident person.
  5. Hire a professional photographer. Pay an experienced photographer to take tasteful photographs of you. Purchase headshots as well as full body photographs in color and black and white. Dress in a stylish, but understated manner, with little to no make-up. Do not take nude or otherwise racy photographs. Use a variety of poses and facial expressions in the pictures.
  6. Create a portfolio. Place the professional photographs into a neatly bound portfolio. Create a digital portfolio as well. A professional photographer can do both tasks. The hard copy and digital versions should be identical and contain your contact information. Include 10 to 12 of the best pictures from your photo shoot. Use a mixture of color and black and white photographs. Include head shots, body shots and a variety of poses and facial expressions that show your range.
  7. Find the official websites of your favorite models and find out which agencies represent them. Mail and e-mail your portfolio to those agencies simultaneously. High end designers typically only select models through agencies, so having an agent is essential. Top agencies receive a high volume of unsolicited requests. Expect to wait anywhere from several days to several weeks or even months.
  8. Attend model agency open calls. A model agency open call is an event where all aspiring models who meet certain criteria–typically height and/or weight requirements–have the opportunity to meet with agency representatives. Dress in a neat, casual fashion with little to no make-up and a simple hairstyle that is not down in your face. Bring high heels in case you have to show your runway walk.

The Best Nail Art Designs

The best nail art designs are fun to apply and fun to look at.

Nail polish has come a long way since you were a little kid practicing painting your nails at home. In addition to bold new colors, nail art encompasses a variety of techniques, looks, tools and accessories, including glitter, rhinestones and animal prints. Whether you opt for a professional manicure or are simply looking for do-it-yourself ideas, the best nail art designs are attractive and unique without being tacky.

Reverse French Manicure

  • The French manicure is a classic nail art look that has been around for years: pale pink nails (your own or acrylic) are painted with a thin-to-thick strip of white at the top of the nail, just above the nail bed. The reverse French manicure is essentially the photo negative of the French. The half-moon cuticle bed at the base of the nail is painted with a curved strip in a contrasting color to the main nail, in addition to the top strip in the style of the classic French manicure. Use contrasting colors for an even more modern twist. At home, one trick to make the reverse French easier to apply is sticking circular hole-punch reinforcer stickers to the base of the nail before applying the main nail color for a more even application.

Animal Prints

  • Leopard and zebra print nail art can be successfully applied at home or at the salon. For professional manicures, simply ask your nail technician for samples and ideas, and change up the usual leopard and zebra colors for a unique take on the design. At home, apply a base coat in brown (for leopard) or white (for zebra), and paint the spots or stripes on top using a striper brush or nail polish pen for increased precision.Gel ImpressionsThe gel impressions technique is best left to the professionals. With this method of nail art application, a base coat is applied in a glitter or sheer color. Gel polish is thickly applied over the basecoat, and then a design is “cut” out in the gel polish before it sets to reveal the glitzy basecoat underneath.Pearls, Sequins, Studs and RhinestonesWith the use of a nail adhesive readily available at the nail salon or your local drugstore, you can apply sequins, pearls, studs and rhinestones to give a new look to your nail art. These appliqués should be the finishing touches on your painted nails. Make sure you leave ample drying time so that they don’t get dislodged or otherwise disrupt your new, neat nails.

5 Best Areas To Live In Delhi

Living in Delhi is a very overwhelming experience; you get a little of both, the ancient richness of the capital and the urban craziness. Delhi, the capital of India and the third largest city of the country has a lot to offer. The infrastructure is developing rapidly and the new ones coming up are worth looking out for.

real estate  delhi

Here are the best areas to live in Delhi-

  • Shanti Niketan

The list of posh areas of Delhi is never ending, one of which being Shanti Niketan. The locality boasts a number of international schools and large humongous malls. It is home to a lot of industrialists and the elite class. This is the best place to buy an apartment in Delhi if you are ready to splurge a few extra bucks!

  • Sunder Nagar

Sunder Nagar is an upmarket residential area situated on Mathura road in Central Delhi. It is widely known for its galleries and local market, where you will mostly find ethnic handicraft shops. This locality offers a great deal of leisure and attracts the rich crowd. The Delhi High School is located on Mathura Road very close by to Sunder Nagar. There are other schools too which offer excellent quality education. Restaurants and hotels are a great treat and have a wide range of mouth watery cuisines.

  • New Gurgoan and Dwarka Expressway

The property rates in Delhi are escalating so high that it’s becomes almost difficult to afford an apartment there. New Gurgoan and Dwarka Expressway is a budding locality offering properties at a very affordable rate at the same time it is well connected with the city. Due to its popularity, there are a lot more schools, restaurants, malls and leisure facilities making their way to this place.

  • Bhiwadi

Another affordable area of Delhi, Bhiwadi is a fast growing place on NH- 8. The area is well connected with Delhi, Gurgoan and the entire NCR (National Capital Region). The affordable living rates make it the most favourable place to live in. Ryan international school, Delhi Public School and Bal Bharti public school are amongst the top schools present in Bhiwadi. It boasts a cool range of restaurants and pubs too.

  • Panchsheel

Located on the outskirts of Delhi, Panchsheel is a perfect area for those who are looking out for some calmness at the same time being well connected with the city. The highlight of this area is the Panchsheel club which is an ideal leisure point for everyone. This area is famous for its festival celebrations which attracts a lot of crowd, especially during Holi. It boasts a long range of schools and restaurants.

Even though Delhi is one of the costliest cities to live in India, it offers great opportunity as well. The growing industry and urban culture makes it conducive for living. If you are looking out for apartments in Delhi do take a look around this 5 areas.

 

Rental Property Investment Strategies

There are many ways to invest in rental property.
Renting real estate can be a profitable venture for investors to consider. Rental properties provide a monthly cash flow, offer tax advantages including property depreciation and the property may increase in value depending on location and the local economy. Just as there are many ways to profit from rental real estate, there are many different investment strategies to gain exposure to the rental market. Investors should consider these different ways to enter the rental market to determine which best meet their individual needs.

Single Family Homes

  • Renting single family homes is the easiest way for new investors to buy real estate and enter the rental market. By choosing homes in good neighborhoods, investors should have little trouble renting their properties or selling them when needed. The primary downside of single family properties is selecting and dealing with tenants. Hiring a property management company to screen tenants, deal with the late night service calls and other problems can reduce the stress, but the costs will also reduce the profitability of the investment.

Multi-unit Buildings

  • Apartment buildings have the potential to provide a large stream of income that will produce significant profits. However, multi-unit buildings also hold the possibility of requiring substantial investments for maintenance or repairs. Investors may have to invest large sums of money into the building to make the property desirable to prospective renters. Multi-unit buildings are also more dependent on a strong local economy to produce the number of tenants needed to fill the building. These large buildings are more difficult to sell due to high costs and a limited amount of potential buyers.

Commercial Real Estate

  • Commercial real estate can vary from storage facilities to shopping malls. As with residential properties, the cost of these properties will have a wide range. Renting commercial properties often has less risk from destructive tenants, but the number of prospective tenants is much smaller. This can lead to properties being on the market much longer, both when renting and selling. Combination residential and commercial properties, most often with a street level commercial unit and apartments above, can present an opportunity for a compromise real estate investment.

REITs

  • Real Estate Investment Trusts, REIT, provide a way for investors to gain exposure to the rental real estate market without the significant investment of time and money required to purchase and hold real estate. A REIT is a trust that may hold various types of real estate properties, including residential and commercial rental real estate. A REIT’s management may choose to specialize in certain types of real estate or real estate in certain areas. REITs buys and sells on the stock market like any other stock which makes getting into and out of the investment quick and easy.

How to Borrow Money for an Investment in Real Estate

Investing in real estate often requires you to borrow money to make a purchase, but the process of borrowing money for investment property differs from that of traditional mortgage lending. If you plan on getting involved in this type of investment, you may have to look for some alternative means of investment if you want to overcome the hurdles that come with financing an investment property. Besides finding the right property, this is one of the most important factors in the process.

Instructions

  1. Apply for a mortgage with a traditional lender. When financing a rental property with a traditional mortgage, you may need to put up a larger down payment than normal. Some lenders require you to come up with at least 20 percent down for rental properties. You will also need to have a high credit score and a steady income to qualify for this type of loan.
  2. Work with a “hard money” lender to get access to the money you need. Hard money lenders regularly lend money to individuals who have low income or a bad credit score. When you use a hard money loan, you will pay a higher interest rate than what you would normally pay with a traditional mortgage.
  3. Use a home-equity loan to get money for the investment property. If you are a homeowner with a large amount of equity, you could potentially borrow against this equity and use the money to buy an investment property. To qualify for a home-equity loan, you will need a strong credit history and enough income to pay back the loan. Some lenders also require you to have a certain amount of assets on hand.
  4. Find investors to work with you on this investment project. Create an investment proposal and show it to your friends and family members. Some may be willing to give you money to purchase the property. This may be combined with a loan, in some cases. The investors could help you come up with the money you need for a down payment.

Careers in International Real Estate

You can pursue residential brokerage careers in the United States and overseas.

Real estate is a burgeoning career field both in the United States and overseas. It offers many opportunities to professionals from both a financial and career development and expansion perspective. A real estate professional can specialize in a certain area (i.e. residential, commercial), or go into a arm of real estate, such as appraisal or property management. Once the basic skills are acquired, they can be applied in any location throughout the world.

Real Estate Broker/Residential

  • Real estate agents represent both buyers and sellers in the real estate transaction process. Both the buying agent and selling agent will then receive a commission, in exchange for representation. In the United States, this commission is around 3 percent of the property’s selling price. This amount might vary based on the country you wish to work in.

    To become a residential realtor in another country, you should be able to speak the native language of that country with at least basic fluency. You also need to make sure that they are a member of International Consortium of Real Estate Associations, which will allow you to practice with your current real estate license.

Real Estate Broker/Commerical

  • Commercial realtors specialize in selling commercial properties such as hotels, office space, retail, industrial and restaurants. Commercial real estate agents must analyze regional market conditions and the overall business economy to give clients the best information possible in choosing real estate. As an international realtor, this means you must have a very solid foundation of knowledge about the economic conditions and trends of the area in which you are working.

    International commercial realtors need to acquire all the same documentation and certifications as a residential realtor would, plus additional certification due to the client base they work with. The rules and regulations vary on a country-by-country basis.

Property Management

  • Often an owner of a property will hire professional property managers to look after their real estate investments. Managers take care of customers, find renters, establish rental prices, and coordinate leases. It will most likely be fairly easy to become a property manager in another country as long as you have a basic work visa for that country. It will be mandatory to be able to speak the language at a high level and understand the culture of the area.

How to Become an International Agent

How to Become an International Agent

Real Estate Property Agent Singapore

With more than 5 years of experience in the real estate industry, Bernie serves both a local and an international client base.

Hardworking and astute to the changes in the real estate market, he is able to advise his clients accurately and profitably, be it timing the market to sell or to make price readjustments.

Other than assisting his clients in buying and selling properties in Singapore, Bernie is also experienced in providing housing solutions for professional expats and assisting them ease into the Singaporean culture and way of life. Having backpack-travelled around the world for 3 years, Bernie is very able to empathize with and understand the needs of clients who are relocating to Singapore for the first time.

Bernie also speaks the Japanese language.

He is a powerful negotiator, being able to do his best for his clients, usually surpassing their expectations of him. He goes beyond the duty of real estate agents by researching the market on behalf of his clients, and once even hired a van (and drove)!!! to personally help a client move-house simply because he promised to assist. Little did that client expect Bernie’s promise of ‘assistance’ to be in such an involved way. Needless to say, such from-the-heart service has won him rave reviews and made many such clients into good friends who continually refer business to him years after their initial encounter, or simply call him up for dinner.

Bernie believes that in business, as in life, we should give our 100% or nothing at all. Above all, he believes that we should have integrity in all business transactions, treating our clients as we would like to be treated.

Bernie is currently with ERA Realty Network, the only real estate company in Singapore that operates from its own buildings as well as being listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange (SGX) under its parent company, Hersing Corporation.

Within 1 year of initially being with ERA Realty Network, Bernie was already inducted as a member of the prestigious Million Dollar Club for being a producer in the industry.

Bernie is a specialist on all types of residential as well as commercial properties in districts:

* 1 (City, Marina area, CDB),
* 4 (Sentosa Island),
* 9 (Orchard Road and surrounding),
* 10 (Balmoral, River Valley, Holland Road),
* 11 (Newton, Novena, Bukit Timah),
* 15 (East Coast, Katong)

That said, he also welcomes all enquiries and offering assistance on properties in other districts of Singapore as he heads a team of dedicated real estate agents who handles properties in all other areas of Singapore.

Together, Bernie and team handles:

* New Project Launches
* Condominiums
* Landed properties (Terrace houses, Semi-Detached, Bungalows)
* Land for rebuilding
* Commercial properties
* Industrial space
* Worker housing

Feel free to get in touch with Bernie at his mobile during business hours.

Below are 3 testimonials for Bernie:

Rick Aston:

Actually for several months, I have been coming to Singapore on business trips…with various agents looking for properties. We were under a time constraint to find a place… I was starting to get frustrated with the other agents. They weren’t really listening to what we were looking for as a family. He found this place that no other agent was even aware of nor prepared to show us. He got us a great place… we’ve been very happy here and it (the home) suited the whole family. So he definitely delivered.

When we finally found it (the property), we actually went through quite a process of negotiation which Bernie helped out very much with.

After we signed the contract and moved in, Bernie helped with the repairs and/or general upkeep.

And then we just stayed in touch actually, just to discuss the general property market.

We’d recommend him and we have recommended him to friends. So definitely (happy). (Bernie is) Very good. (A) very good agent!

Susan Lau:

I asked for the electricity and water to be cut off (utilities). If I leave it on and sometimes when they go viewing (the property) and if they forget to switch it off, the bill might go sky-high. So I was afraid of that. But then he (Bernie) assured me to just leave it for 2 weeks, because someone might want to see (the property) at night, so I might miss the chance of (selling the property). Because of that, I gave him 2 weeks to see what were the results.
He was able to produce results in less than two weeks! I feel very relieved and very happy that I can have the entire episode closed up, because it has been dragging (for 4 months before Bernie assisted in the marketing of the property) and I became so tired of it (the selling process).

In fact, they (the buyers) gave me a certain amount (price to purchase) but Bernie said he will try to get some more (better price). He (successfully) did that.

Bernie is a very effective agent, has the human touch, and (is) humourous.

I am very very satisfied (with Bernie and his services).

Doreen Tan:

(Once) I told him (Bernie) that I have tried (for) quite some time to acquire my neighbour’s land… but it wasn’t successful. So, he put in effort to locate the owner(s) to approach the owner(s) a few times (to eventually convince them to sell the property), and to negotiate a very reasonable price for me and also for the owners(s). So we’re very happy.

He really goes the extra mile to do research and to understand more of what his clients want.

I am very happy (with Bernie) because he is not a pushy person (agent). When he sees the house and feels that this is not what I want, he will not ask me to spend time to go and have a look. That is what I appreciate (of him). He knows very well what his clients want. And he knows what I want.

And he will follow up and ask ‘How are you’. (Regarding) His service, I should say is EXCELLENT.

He will do (continous) research for the whole market (property), Asian and also the whole world’s market (in general). He will give his ideas (views) to keep us updated (clients) on what is happening in the property market. I don’t think there are many property agents (who are) willing to do extra work, extra research for his or her clients.

I did recommend someone to Bernie, and that is my partner, Dora.

I am very, very satisfied with his (Bernie’s) service.

Now I am building my dream house. ‘Thank you’ to Bernie!

 

Marketing Tips for Real Estate Agents

Real estate agents use diverse marketing plans to find their clients.

Real estate agents rely on a combination of word-of-mouth referrals and referrals gained from other marketing techniques. Keep in mind that a diversified marketing strategy is the best formula for successful sales. With various marketing techniques, you will be able to devote a specific amount of time each week to networking. Use most of your time for helping clients to complete their real estate transaction.

Community Publications

  • A traditional way to market your services involves publishing a business card in community publications. Contact local churches, schools and community organizations about their rates for advertising. They have regular newsletters and bulletins for their members. Target publications with members who live or work near your home base, such as in your section of a city or county. List your business card in publications with the highest number of readers for the business card fee. You can also sign up for listing your contact information on websites for these organizations. Sometimes web listings are free.

National Association of Realtors

  • Beef up your marketing campaign through membership in the National Association of REALTORS. With a REALTOR credential, you get access to marketing tools for new and established agents. For example, Realtor.org offers a startup kit for new professionals in its online library. You can also get a mentor inside the association to advise you on a personal marketing plan. REALTORS may use the trademarked designation in print and online media, which provides instant recognition among many consumers.

Social Networking

  • You can also use social networking as free online marketing. An article featured on the Chicago Association of REALTORS’ website cautions using social networking sites. Keep your own Facebook or other social networking account separate from your business account. Use each site’s privacy settings so no one can find your personal information without your knowledge. On a business profile, post helpful information for prospective clients, such as market trends and investment opportunities. When clients network with you online, they can exchange information using a site’s features. Diligently follow up on each customer contact in order to maximize the effects of social networking sites.

Doorhanging

  • For door-to-door campaigns, visit neighborhoods where you are likely to find clients. First, hire a printing company to produce door-hangers with your photo and contact information. You might choose a high-quality style with multi-color printing. You can quickly work your way through a neighborhood on foot or using a vehicle. Beware of dogs and no soliciting signs before approaching a home and hanging a door-hanger.

Why do you need a Real Estate Agent?

Today’s home owners have many options in hand which help them to make successful real estate transactions. With the real estate market recovering from the crash in mid 2000’s, the percentages of sales has risen considerably in the recent times. Though it may seem that real estate agencies are on a verge of extinction, but that’s just a myth. At times handling real estate contracts, fixing the right asking price, etc might be very tricky.

Though home owners may save a lot of money by doing things themselves, it is recommended that they take professional whether they invest in residential projects in Kolkata or buy/ sell apartments in Kolkata. Doing things themselves often cost homeowners more, than what they have to pay the agents.  So here are few reasons why homeowners should not reject the idea of hiring a real estate agent:

  1. Better Access and convenience: Real agents are known to simplify the home buying/ selling process since they have the expertise and take charge of everything on behalf of the buyer and seller. They work as a link between the two parties and offer better exposure to the properties listed by other agents as well. Agents know what it takes to complete a deal faster and also help the buyers/ sellers to get the best deals. Real estate buying or selling requires prompt responses and the agents are experts in doing this. If homeowners choose to do things themselves they might actually miss on a huge number of interested parties, since they fail to respond quickly.
  2. Negotiating is Tougher than it seems: While homeowners may think they can save a lot by negotiating themselves, it might turn out otherwise. The relationship between buyers and sellers is not an easy one and in most cases they don’t get along very well, since each one thinks of his own benefits. An agent acts as a connection between buyers and sellers so that the messages are conveyed correctly. They have better negotiating skills and know how to convince people.
  3. Real Estate Contracts are Tricky: Real estate buying or selling involves signing contracts    so that people are protected from certain situations, when one fails make the payments. Agents work with such contracts regularly and know what should be included and what should be omitted to keep parties protected.
  4. Agents work for their client’s best Interests: Real estate agents are licensed professionals so they are bound to work for their client’s interests. They are bound by the common law so any offensive act on their part will be taken seriously. Moreover, real estate agents depend on referrals and recommendations, so they’ll try hard to serve their clients in the best possible way and get the best deals.
  5. Do homeowners really save money? If homeowners decide to crack the deals themselves, they’ll have to fix the selling price depending on the comparable properties in the neighbourhood, hoping to save the commissions of the agents. It might so happen that the seller gets a notion of this and quotes a price that is less than the ideal selling price, to save some money himself. So neither the buyer nor the seller gets to save enough money.

Real estate buying or selling is a very complex process, since a lot of paperwork has to be done, lot of questions have to be answered and most importantly you need to get the best deals. All this might not be possible by the homeowner himself. So whether one looks for buying an apartment in Kolkata or sell a property, hiring an agent would be beneficial.

How to Become a Real Estate Photographer

Becoming a real estate photographer involves developing your skills as a photographer and marketing your services to real estate agents. Listing agents recognize that providing images of property, including photos of every part of the home or business, creates a collection of pictures that give potential buyers useful information about the place for sale. Develop expertise in using a camera with a special lens that allows you to photograph the entire room. Learning how to take photos for real estate agents also involves developing your communication skills so you can sell your services effectively. The Real Estate Photographers of America and International Trade Association allows you to register so real estate agents can find you to obtain your services.

Instructions

  1. Take photography courses at your local college, community center or school. Learn how to capture, shape, transmit, save and print digital photos. See how to use both digital and film cameras, lenses and film. Get experience developing film and setting different exposures. The PhotographyCourse.net website provides free access to online courses.
  2. Get a credential. The Professional Photographic Certification Commission allows you to take an exam and obtain the Certified Professional Photographer certification. The Photography website provides access to study questions, links to online resources and a glossary of terms. Use these resources to learn the basic operations of film and digital cameras, how to use the viewfinder, load the film or memory card and take the picture control exposure. Judges review 20 images you submit as representation of your work. They assess your skills, knowledge and ability to produce pleasing photographs. For architectural photos, judges look for good quality of light, color, density and appropriate contrast.
  3. Create a website to market your services. Using free website development tools, such as Wix, Weebly or Intuit, create a site to showcase your work and attract new clients. Advertise your business in real estate trade association publications for your area. Compare your site with websites produced by other real estate photographers to get inspiration. The American Society for Home Stagers and Redesigners provides tips to set up vacant homes so they look more attractive by finding focal points, scaling the space, managing traffic flow and using the best color schemes.
  4. Use the SCORE website to locate a mentor in your area. Observe a real estate photographer on the job to learn tips and techniques for taking attractive pictures of property. Real estate photographers also use multimedia, such as video, to show off properties. Producing comprehensive virtual tours and using advanced editing techniques allow real estate photographers to help agents sell more efficiently.

Is Real Estate a Good Career Choice?

A career in real estate is not for everyone. A certain mind-set and skill set are required to be successful in this industry. When evaluating a real estate career, there are several key factors you must keep in mind to assist you in determining if it is a good career choice.

Time Management

  • Individuals who manage time well can be very successful in real estate. Those able to divide days into segments for duties such as advertising, prospecting, and servicing clients to accomplish tasks make good real estate professionals.

Self-Discipline

  • Self-employed professions require a hefty amount of self-discipline. Individuals who can make a plan and stick to it can be very successful in the real estate industry. Treating a real estate career as a job and not a hobby is crucial to success.

Thirst for Knowledge

  • The real estate industry is constantly changing. Being a professional in the industry means consistently updating your education and retaining information. Many hours of study and research are expected in this profession.

Attention to Detail

  • Attention to detail is a must for those in the real estate industry. Dealing with multiple forms, contracts, and legal documents requires persistence, patience, and an ability to spot and correct errors.

Patience

  • In a service industry such as real estate, patience is a valuable asset. When a client’s emotions run high, it is important that a real estate professional be steady, stable, and able to field concerns and complaints skillfully.

Compensation

  • Successful real estate professionals have a potential for a six-figure income. However, in real estate, there is no normal paycheck, since your compensation is tied into successful property closings. Income can be sporadic, and individuals in the real estate industry must prepare for that fact.

What Are the Functions of Investment Companies?

The risks of investing in investment companies depend on the riskiness of the strategies they employ.
An investment company is a financial services firm that holds securities of other companies purely for investment purposes. Investment companies come in different forms: exchange-traded funds, mutual funds, money-market funds, and index funds. Investment companies collect funds from institutional and retail investors, and are entrusted with making investments in financial instruments according to the strategies that were previously agreed with the investors.

Collect Investments

  • Investment companies collect funds by issuing and selling shares to investors. There are basically two types of investment companies: close-end and open-end companies. Close-end companies issue a limited amount of shares that can then be traded in the secondary market–on a stock exchange–whereas open-end company funds, e.g. mutual funds, issue new shares every time an investor wants to buy its stocks.

Invest in Financial Instruments

  • Investment companies invest in financial instruments according to the strategy of which that they made investors aware. There are a wide range of strategies and financial instruments that investment companies use, offering investors different exposures to risks. Investment companies invest in equities (stocks), fixed-income (bonds), currencies, commodities and other assets.

Pay Out the Profits

  • The profits and losses that an investment company makes are shared among its shareholders. Depending on the type–close-end or open-end–and the structure of the investment company, investors can redeem their shares for cash from the company, sell the shares to another firm or individual, or receive capital distributions when assets held by the investment company are sold.

What Are the Advantages & Disadvantages of Investing in a Bank Account?

Bank investments can be very safe but not very lucrative.
While stock tips and investment advice are all the rage, there are other options that can be explored by investors. Some of these options are available at your bank. From savings accounts to certificates of deposit, banks offer a variety of ways to earn returns on your money. But these financial investments come with a set of advantages and disadvantages of which budding investors should be aware.

Different Bank Account Types

  • When “investing” your money in a bank, there are a few options. You can put your money in a checking account or a savings account, where it will accrue a small amount of interest. Or you can invest in a bank’s money market account, which functions somewhat like a savings account but with higher returns and more restrictions. Lastly, you can invest in a certificate of deposit (CD), which features some of the higher interest return rates but contains some serious restrictions on what you can do with your money.

Advantage: Security

  • With all of the investment or financial tools available at a bank comes one serious advantage: security. When you invest in an American bank, your money is safe even if you invest it in a CD or money market account. Should the bank fail or some other disaster strike, your money is guaranteed by the FDIC, a federal insurer that guarantees deposits up to $250,000 should something happen to an FDIC-insured bank. Most, if not all, banks in this country are insured in this way. In comparison to the stock market, bank investments are safe investments; you won’t lose money from market swings or economic trends.

Disadvantage: Returns

  • The ironclad security of bank investments, whether in accounts or CDs, is balanced out by the painfully low returns on these financial services. Checking accounts earn no interest; savings accounts earn a very small amount, usually amounting to 1 or 2 percent. Even with a large amount of money invested, you’ll be earning pennies with these types of investments. Money market accounts and CDs earn more. Typical rates for a CD are 5 percent, according to BYG Publishing.

Liquidity

  • Depending on the type of bank investment you make, liquidity can be either an advantage or a disadvantage. It is an advantage if you possess a savings account. While you may earn small returns, you typically have access to money in a savings account at any time. For CDs and money market accounts, there are limits on when you can access your money. In opposition to this, stock market investments are, in theory, very liquid: You can sell your stock at any time. But, the practicalities of the market dictate that to recoup money lost or to realize higher returns, you may be forced to leave your money in stocks until the price reaches a point where you can make money or make back money lost.

What Is the Importance of Investing?

Your financial goals should determine the content of your financial portfolio.
Many Americans lack an understanding of financial markets and how to begin an investment program. More importantly, they may not recognize the importance of investing, which is to build wealth and financial security by ensuring the money they earn also has earning power. You begin an investment program by asking why you’ll need money and how much money you’ll need at different points in time. Once you recognize these investment goals, you’re better prepared to identify investment vehicles that will support your financial objectives.

Investment Time Horizon

  • The time horizon for achieving an investment goal varies from one goal to the next. In addition, some goals are reoccurring, such as travel, and others are more rare occurrences, such as a college education or the purchase of a home. In general, the greater amount of time you have to accumulate the money you’ll need, the more risk you can tolerate and the greater return an investment might earn due to the power of compound interest. The criticality of the need, such as saving for retirement, and the time you have to meet the financial need will determine your return requirements and your ability to tolerate investment risk.

Short-Term Investment Goals

  • You arrange your investment goals by the deadline you set for achieving each one. For example, short-term goals might include a wedding, vacations and major household goods, such as furniture or appliances. Your short-term goals should also include the creation of an emergency fund that consists of three to six months of living expenses. To accomplish these goals, you might choose investments with short-term maturity dates that allow you to access your money without incurring a penalty. Both a Federal Deposit Insurance Company-insured money market account and savings bonds allow you to you earn money on your deposits that will help you accomplish your short-term goals.

Mid-Term Investment Goals

  • Saving money for your mid-term investment goals is next on your investment agenda. Mid-term goals include money for a house down payment or house renovation, as well as a vacation home or business investment. You can accomplish these investment goals with investments that entail more risk, such as stocks, because the longer time horizon provides you time to recoup any losses.

Long-Term Investment Goals

  • Your long-term goals are a critical element of you investment plan that might include a degree program, a family inheritance and a retirement fund. The retirement fund, which means you won’t be required to work throughout your life, is one important reason to invest for the long-term as frequently and as inexpensively as possible. You’ll want to accumulate your desired annual income after you retire multiplied by your life expectancy after retirement. For example, assume your retirement investments must generate $100,000 yearly when you retire and that your life expectancy is 25 years after retirement. In this case, 25 times $100,000 is $2.5 million. If you earn a 5 percent return every year during your retirement years, your investments will generate your desired $100,000 income.

Why Is Per Capita Income Important?

If per capita income is high, people may spend more, stabilizing the economy.
Two or more regions can compare income just as two individuals can compare income to determine who is more financially stable. The way economists compare regional income is through per capita figures. Per capita divides all available income in a region by the area’s population. These comparisons are important for investment, economic stability and appeals for aid.

Stability and Wealth Measurement

  • In the broadest sense, per capita income matters because it serves as a measurement of the stability and wealth within an economy. Per capita income is a ratio of the amount of all a region’s income divided its population. Thus, if the ratio rises, it suggests that members of the population are more prosperous than they have been in the past. Conversely, a reduced per capita figure suggests that the standard of living in a region has decreased, assuming the price of goods has either stayed the same or increased with inflation.

Aid

  • Because per capita income is a measurement of prosperity for a region, it is useful for determining what regions are in need of financial assistance, assuming that the cost of living is the same in those regions. For instance, if the cost of rice is a dollar in country Y, but two dollars in country X, and country X’s per capita income is higher, members of country X may be just as prosperous as those in country Y. If country X has the same per capita income as county Y, then the higher cost of rice would be an issue. If per capita income is the same, agencies that provide aid or financial assistance to those in country X, because members of country X would be financially worse off.

Investment

  • A higher per capita income represents a higher purchasing power, as members of the community have more money to spend. This is useful in investment. For instance, in a new business, you would want to approach shareholders who actually afford to invest. Otherwise, you would waste resources trying to market your company to people who won’t back you financially. Additionally, investing in businesses in areas with higher per capita ratios may yield a higher return, as the income of the area suggests that people have the purchasing power to buy the business’ products or services.

Considerations

  • Even though per capita income is important, it is only useful when there isa relatively low number of very high earners in the community. High earners raise the amount of income in a per capita ratio, so including the very wealthy in per capita figures may give a skewed representation of what people actually make. Additionally, because per capita figures don’t tell you how income is distributed, it can mask social issues, which cause the average income in those regions to rise or fall.

Top 15 Job Responsibilities of a Blue Moon Real Estate Agent

We all are aware that property dealings are no easy task and cannot be just over within a few days. It takes considerable time in different issues whether it is selling, buying or renting for different purposes including the residential and commercial ones. It is the situation when an optimum quality real estate agent is essential. Indeed, finding one credible person for that is also little bit daunting but not impossible as there are many reputed names across the country for the job.

The real estate agents Nambour having a legitimate license are the only ones allowed to indulge in authorized real estate activities. These license holders have prior qualifications and suitability to take up those responsibilities. The following explains briefly about what they are hired to do:-

  1. 1.     Informed – Agents who deal in day to day real estate business are aware of the locations in the vicinity and have optimum knowledge regarding the subject. It helps them to apprise the client with vital information.
    1. 2.     Interview – It is seen as a good quality of an agent who asks variety of questions to the clients. At least, it gives an idea about their interests in depth regarding the deal and how they can fulfill those demands.
    2. 3.     Prepared – One of the jobs is to prepare legal documents related to contracts, agreements and lease papers and so on.
    3. 4.     Coordinate – They check on the agreements for signing and also expending of the funds between the parties. Those blue moon real estate agents coordinate the entire process effectively.
    4. 5.     Intermediate – Agents act as intermediary between the buyer and seller or any other party for discussions.
    5. 6.     Negotiate – They have a prominent role in negotiation while purchase/sell of a property which can be fruitful to both sides.
    6. 7.     Substitute – Most of the time they represent on the behalf of their clients as it could be an extensive process to seal the trade.
    7. 8.     Investigate – Another role of theirs is quite important from the financial perspective is to explore the possibilities of client’s status of credit and finance.
    8. 9.     Promote – It is the duty of a real estate agent Nambour to endorse the properties through advertisements, listing services and several other ways to inform interested public.

10. Compare – They know how to judge against similar types of properties to determine the best market prices for it.

11. Review – Analysis of the listings to find out prospective properties and acquire as much information about real estate markets are included in their job duties.

12. Inspect – When a property goes for rent, the agents have to inspect it in regular intervals and acquaint the owners regarding maintenance and related subjects.

13. Advice – They provide selective advice with respect to different issues of legal necessities, conditions of the market, price facts and others.

14. Assess – Before explaining to the clients about some properties, a real estate agent Nambour has to self assess them by visiting personally.

Demonstrate – They are hired to describe the features of a property as well as notify about its benefits and losses.

How to Become a Real Estate Agent in Mexico

A work visa is required to become a real estate agent in Mexico.
Becoming a real estate agent is Mexico presents a few hurdles for people who aren’t citizens of the country, but it isn’t a task that’s close to impossible. The biggest obstacle is getting a job offer from a real estate company. To do that, you need at least a basic knowledge of the local real estate market. Only after receiving a written job offer can a work visa application be filed with the Mexican consulate.

Instructions

  1. Choose a regional market to work in, then contact all the major real estate agencies in the area, inform them of your desire to work as a real estate agent in the region, and ask if they would be willing to have you work with them. Once you receive a positive response from at least one company, ask for a job offer letter from the owner, which is required when filing for a business visa.
  2. Contact the nearest Mexican consulate and obtain a Business Visa FM-3 request form and the associated paperwork. The form is required of non-Mexican nationals requesting to work in the country. A list of addresses and other contact information for all consulates in the United States and Canada is on the Mexico Online travel website (mexicoonline.com).
  3. Submit a Business Visa FM-3 request, along with any other required documentation to the Mexican consulate general. Items that must be included as part of the request are the written job offer, completed visa request form and a valid U.S. passport and a letter outlining the reason for the request, and requested length of stay. Other items that could be requested by individual consulates are a second picture ID, resume or copy of the real estate company’s business license.
  4. Report to work in Mexico after the consulate general approves the visa application. Applications are generally approved within 10 working days of filing, but the time can vary. Unlike in the United States, no license is required to work as a real estate agent in Mexico; however, a trade organization, the Mexican Association of Realtors, or AMPI, helps real estate professionals in areas such as training.

How to Start a Property Investment Company

Provide people with a place to call home while making money with a property investment company.
Many people purchase a home or property to serve their own needs, such as a place to live. While most know that purchasing a home is an investment since many homes sell for more than they were purchased for, few consider expanding on this single purchase by buying more properties and establishing a business. However, those with an interest in working for themselves and having their own business can do so by learning how to start a property investment company.

Instructions

  1. Craft a business plan. Analyze the financial aspects of starting a property investment company by learning how much money is required to start the company as well as what potential for profit exists based on your location. Develop a plan for how you will market and staff your company while also expanding it and making it profitable. Include all of this information in a written business plan for your property investment company, which you can create using the business plan information available from the website of the U.S. Small Business Administration.
  2. Apply for funding. Access your credit report from one of the three credit bureaus to learn what credit score you have as well as review your report for any mistakes prior to applying for a business or commercial loan. Speak to a loan officer to find out if you qualify for a loan based on your credit report as well as the business plan you’ve drafted for your property investment company. Consider taking on a partner who has the monetary resources or capital you need to start the business if you can’t qualify for loans on your own. Know thought that with a partnership, profits from your company will be split based on your agreement.
  3. Register your company. Obtain an employer identification number (EIN) from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by calling 800-829-4933 or completing the form on the IRS website. Determine what sales tax laws are in effect in your region and whether they apply to your business by visiting with a representative from the department of revenue at your state and city level. Comply with any sales tax regulations that exist as well as licensing regulations such as a local business license from your city government.
  4. Buy property. Determine if your company specializes in residential or commercial property or a combination of the two. Hire a commercial real estate agent to assist you in finding your initial property to start your company as well as subsequent properties to grow your business. Know how to check property values with your local property assessment office to ensure you aren’t paying too much for a property. Consider getting your license as a real estate agent as this cuts down on your expenses since you don’t have to pay a realtor for each property sold and purchased by your company.
  5. Purchase insurance. Speak with local insurance agents in your community to get quotes for insurance on your property investment company. Obtain both liability and property insurance since this protects your business from lawsuits from tenants injured in or on your property while also protecting the physical structure from damage caused by fire and natural disaster. Add additional insurance to your business as your company grows and you acquire more property.
  6. Hire staff. Find an office assistant to help you manage and operate your property investment company especially if you are out of the office frequently inspecting current properties and looking for new ones. Retain a lawyer to assist you in developing leases and contracts for your company. Employ a maintenance person or crew to make repairs, renovate outdated properties and maintain the landscape of the properties you own. Consider hiring a property manager as your grow to take over the daily management of properties and free you up as the owner to focus on growing and expanding the company.

Study Tips for Passing a Real Estate Exam

Real estate agents often make their own schedules and work off commission.
Studying for the real estate exam and getting ready for the days building up to the test can require a significant amount of preparation. However, most agents pass the test in the first try, and if you do not pass, you can always take it again. The key to this is learning proper study skills prior to taking the test and being in top shape on test day. Get ahead of the pack by being proactive, expressing discipline and relaxing rather than stressing out about it and cramming the night before.

Use the Right Resources

  • Focusing on resources designed to pass the real estate test will set a solid study foundation. It is also important to note that test questions vary from state to state, and tests change; therefore, training books and resources change as well, so make sure you have the most current study materials. Always check training book dates, and look for current study guides. If you come across confusing material, it is also a good idea to ask questions of an agent who has passed the test in recent months.

Complete School Work

  • As soon as the real estate course or program begins, start studying the material. Purchase current books and study them from cover to cover. Learn to take shorthand notes; listen to the instructor if you take classes in person and take class notes on every lecture or lesson. Read over all of these notes as you begin to prepare for the test. Also, do all homework or assignments listed in the book on your own, as most instructors will often not cover all book exercises. In addition to self study, join a study group with fellow classmates to help reinforce classroom material. If possible, take a test preparatory course, especially if a real estate course is not an option.

Avoid Cramming

  • It is advisable to not cram the night before the real estate test. It is important to relax the day before to avoid an overload of facts and stress. Getting a good night’s sleep is also recommended. Even if you have been studying for weeks, sleep deprivation will sabotage the brain’s functionality, potentially affecting clarity and efficiency during the exam. It is also important to get a well balanced and healthy meal prior to taking the test.

Test Taking Tips

  • Be prepared with all the required test taking materials, which vary according to state test regulations. In most cases, blank paper, pencils and a basic calculator are allowed in the testing room. Be sure to have a sharp pencil and a properly functioning calculator. Read each question thoroughly, as misunderstanding questions is one of the most common causes of incorrect answers. Test question are commonly convoluted, so read the questions multiple times until you know what is being asked. Unclear questions can be left for later; lingering on one question can hinder completing the test. Once the end of the test is reached, do a second pass over to check your work and answer questions you got stuck on the first time through. Trust the material that you have studied, and have confidence in your answer. It is a good general rule to not change a test question unless you are absolutely sure it is incorrect.

How to Become an International Agent

International agents travel all over the world.
Rising through the ranks of your job close to home may be satisfying for a while, but for some people the lure of a jet-setting international career is one that is hard to resist. International agent jobs in any field are highly prized positions with a competitive hiring process. Luckily, there are steps you can take in your working life to mark yourself out as a great candidate when an opportunity arises.

Instructions

  1. Demonstrate flexibility in your everyday working practices. Don’t grumble if the boss asks you to stay late, swap a shift with a colleague, or attend an out-of-town conference. If you make it seem as though your home life is more important to you than your work life, then those with the power to hire and fire will assume you are not suited to a role that takes you away a lot. This could mean that they pass you over when an international agent position becomes available.
    Keep your appointment book open and show you are willing to work.
  2. Build contacts with international counterparts. If working with a member of staff in an overseas branch of your company via telephone or email, ensure you are helpful and friendly. International agent positions are often decided by a collection of managers from a number of offices that will be affected by the work of the person in that role, so making an impression on colleagues based abroad when you come into contact with them can only help your case if an international agent role opens up.
    Be friendly and helpful to overseas offices if you want to be an international agent.
  3. Learn a language. Study independently using audio lessons or attend an evening class in your area. If you want to work in a foreign country, you will need to be able to communicate when posted there. Having a foreign language on your resume will show you are prepared to try to integrate overseas, and will mark you out as a possible candidate if an international agent position becomes open.
  4. Show an interest in overseas events. Buy a newspaper that covers world news and read it at your desk in your lunch break. Demonstrating to your boss that you are up to date on international developments that may affect the way in which your company’s overseas trade is conducted makes you seem all the more suited to an international agent role.
    Read about international events to gain an understanding of the overseas market.
  5. Tell your boss that you would like to be considered should an international agent role open up within your company. It is no use attempting to make yourself appear the perfect candidate if the person in charge of filling these popular positions has no idea you would like to be considered. Use a performance review to flag up your interest in an overseas role or, if necessary, ask your boss for a brief meeting and explain what your ambitions are. Ask your boss to give you constructive feedback on what you may be able to do to make yourself more suited to a future international agent role.
    Tell your boss about your ambitions if you want to be an international agent.