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Category Archives: International Real Estate

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

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.

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

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 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.

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.

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 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.

How to Invest in Commercial Real Estate

Commercial real estate investing requires knowledge of finance, real estate investment and the law.

The term “commercial real property” includes parcels, with or without buildings, used for business or retail purposes. Investment in commercial real estate involves a significant cash commitment and investors typically work with partners or investment groups to purchase larger commercial properties. Investors also work with experienced commercial real estate agents and a title agent trained in commercial property work.

Instructions

  1. Match your commercial real estate interests with various geographic regions matching your interests. Investing in commercial real estate involves extensive knowledge in a variety of commercial market classifications, including small and large retail, shopping centers, rental properties, office buildings and industrial structures. Matching your commercial real estate interests with targeted geographic regions ripe for investment requires years of following the real estate and investment markets. Once you feel comfortable with one or more commercial types of investment opportunities, research the geographic areas best suited to your interests. Conduct research by reading regional commercial real estate reports and meeting with other investors at conventions and professional seminars. The International Council of Shopping Centers, for instance, holds international, nation and regional conventions offering education seminars and training sessions.
  2. Network with other commercial investors and join finance partnerships. Investment partnerships provide cash reserves, but they also mean your fellow investors must share your investment strategies. Unless you have available funds for the commercial investment, adding partners offers the option to fund large commercial ventures. Meet potential partners at local commercial property training sessions and at professional conventions.
  3. Network with commercial property lenders. The National Real Estate Investor noted commercial lenders tightened lending practices with the economic decline beginning in late 2009, and slow markets mean a larger commitment of cash and collateral required for commercial investment plans. Work with several qualified lenders to develop a presentation package documenting your financial backing for use in presenting offers on commercial properties.
  4. Locate a licensed commercial real estate broker with specialty certifications in your interest areas and also an experienced title researcher. A licensed Realtor can provide current knowledge of the market, experience in negotiating sales prices and contract terms and the strategy know-how in pricing your offer. The real estate agent also offers exclusive access to a market of commercial properties. An experienced title agent also offers valuable knowledge for commercial property investors. Title agents research current property ownership, present and past loans and document comparable sales made in your targeted geographic region.
  5. Research specific properties and make offers on the real estate. Once your investment team decides on a property, consult with your commercial real estate agent to write a legal contract for the property. Ask your title agent to construct a preliminary title report to document the property history. This report assists in developing a price for the property and any necessary terms involving the physical condition, zoning and community restrictions, as well as any restrictions on future development or prohibitions on property modifications.

How to Sell a Home to an International Buyer

As the economy of the United States continues to change, more and more international real estate investors have laid their eyes on buying up investment properties in America. With this trend continuing to increase you may want to consider marketing your home not only to those within your city or state or even nation, but to the world at large. Opening your property up to national as well as international buyers will give you the advantage you need to sell your home quickly and for a good price.

Instructions

  1. Advertise your property in a foreign newspaper. You can easily do a quick search for a newspaper in the countries you wish to advertise to, and through their website either place and ad directly, or, be able to locate the contact information for their classifieds department. Remember to keep in mind foreign currency rates when getting prices.
  2. Make your own website. One of the quickest and least expensive ways is to create your own website for the property. You can easily find a cheap or free website hosting service and can even hire a web designer to help you post the site if you feel like you are not technologically prepared to build a website on your own. Also, keep in mind that many hosting companies now offer very simple website building software that just about anyone can use, and on top of that most of these companies offer the software for free.
  3. Place an ad in a foreign magazine. If you truly have a great piece of luxury property, you may want to consider taking out an ad in a foreign magazine. Look for aspects of your home that are unique and look for magazines that match that uniqueness. So for example, if you have a gourmet kitchen, you may want to put and ad out in an international cooking magazine. Or if you have lakefront property with water access, you may want to take out an ad in an international boating or fishing magazine. Just be creative.
  4. Post an ad on Craigslist or other international classifieds sites. Cragislist has made it as simple as possible to advertise your property to an international audience. Posting an ad on Craigslist and similar sites is also quite simple as well as free. You will not only be able to post a large amount of text regarding your property but you will also be able to post photos, and even a link to your website featuring the property if you have one.
  5. Make your home stand out. The best way to sell your home to any buyer, including an international buyer, is to find its selling points. Find what makes your home stand out among the many luxury properties and lofts and really sell that point. Whether it’s the view, the square footage, the location or the amenities, highlight them as much as you can in your ad to get your potential buyers hooked on learning more and potentially buying your property.

How to Become a Real Estate Virtual Assistant

Virtual positions have become increasingly popular, especially in real estate. Realtors and brokers have busy schedules and are often unable to keep up with the high demand on their own. You can become a real estate virtual assistant using the following suggestions.

Instructions

  1. Take a real estate assistant’s course and become certified. Visit the International Real Estate Assistants Association website for information on the certification process. This course teaches potential assistants how to use the tools and technologies used by real estate professionals.
  2. Determine whether you want to work as a contractor or an employee. If you want to work independently, you need to come up with a name for your business.
  3. Look for ads for virtual assistants. Work-at-home forums are good places to start. You’ll often find a folder specifically for virtual real estate assistants. Online employment sites, such as Craigslist and Careerbuilder, allow you to look for jobs by category and geographic location.
  4. Build a website for your services to give you a place to direct your prospective clients to and to create a more professional appearance.
  5. Create flyers and a brief letter explaining your services. Outline the benefits of having a virtual real estate assistant. Include your contact information, so prospective clients can contact you.
  6. Mail a flyer and a copy of the letter to real estate offices, brokers and individual realtors in your area. Remain positive. There’s a great demand for virtual real estate assistants. If you don’t receive positive results at first, continue applying.

How to Become a Real Estate Assistant

The world of real estate is an inviting field. In order to get your foot in the door, why not become a Real Estate Professional Assistant? An administrative assistant with coursework behind them can easily get a clerical job in a real estate office. Once you are an employee in a real estate office or brokerage firm, you will benefit from the Real Estate Assistant (REPA) course. Taking this course for certification, on top of the administrative assistant degree, you will become invaluable to your agents.

Instructions

  1. Get your certificate or associate’s degree as an administrative assistant. Courses taken through your local community college will give you this degree and pave the way for the REPA certification. All of the courses you take to obtain your administrative assistant degree will give you the foundation you need to become a real estate professional assistant.
  2. Learn in-depth knowledge of real estate licensing, transactions, listing types and contract regulations as you study the material. They will instruct you on how to become a licensed REPA. The course also gives you information on what is a “must have” in a listing agreement and fair housing laws. Testing will include all of the above topics.
  3. Take the Real Estate Professional Assistant certification course from the National Association of Realtors in a classroom setting or online. Learn everything you need to get started as a REPA in this well rounded two-day class. Take the virtual course from the International Real Estate Assistant Association as another option.
  4. Absorb the legal and day-to-day information you are gaining in class. You have already been exposed to much of it in your day-to-day duties if you are a real estate office worker. This knowledge will help to make you an invaluable part of the firm, particularly once you finish your REPA training.
  5. Use your customer service skills to their maximum potential. If you are the best at what you do in dealing with the public and your coworkers, the management in your division will notice that and help you to achieve your education. After all, it will benefit them as well.
  6. Get ready for change. Apply to all of the real estate firms within driving distance of you. You have the skills they are looking for and they don’t have to put in any time training you. Get all of the information you can on the real estate industry, and you may decide to get your license and become a full broker.

How to Find Foreign Investors

Turn trade shows into opportunities to meet foreign investors.
There may be plenty of reasons to expand beyond the comfort zone of home when starting a new company or seeking investors to help fund your project. For starters, your country may not offer the kinds of investors you are looking for, necessitating the need for a more widespread international search. Additionally, going global helps you tap into the capital, technology and talent that at one time only large companies could access.

Multinational Companies

  • Approaching existing foreign or multinational companies with a view to forming joint ventures, subsidiaries or strategic alliances may be one way to reach into the foreign investor pool. Any quest to find investors this way involves finding the right contact person by researching who is in charge of business growth or strategic partnerships. You also should take care to address the potential gains and pitfalls of investing through the foreign investor’s eyes. In this vein, the business plan you present to foreign stakeholders should discuss capital budgeting decisions adjusted for political and economic risk; cross-border cash flow optimization; and tax and transaction cost reduction policies.

Trade Fairs and Conferences

  • Instead of taking a scattershot approach to finding a foreign investor, go where the prospects are. Major international trade fairs in your field bring potential foreign investors to a centralized location. International trade show directories such as Expo Database help you zoom in on specific industries, countries and cities. For example, the commercial real estate company Stewart Title Guaranty Company suggests Expo Real and Le Marché International des Professionnels de l’Immobilier as venues for real estate professionals interested in meeting foreign investors.

Investor Databases

  • Foreign investors come in all forms, from private equity and venture capital firms to angel investors. Narrowing down a set of foreign investors that are appropriate for you can be challenging without some sort of information management system to crunch the numbers. On the venture capital website VCGate, you can specify potential investors not only by country of origin, but by investor type, stage of investment funded, amount of funding sought and preferred sectors. Another database connecting startups to investors worldwide is Gust.com, which lists investors by industry, location and investor type.

Visa Programs

  • Just when some start-ups throw in the towel on finding a foreign investor because the latter have too strenuous criteria, others are learning about the benefits of programs that are tied to the investor acquiring a visa. For example, with the EB-5 program sponsored by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, entrepreneurs get to access foreign investors in exchange for the latter obtaining a green card. Entrepreneurs work with third-party intermediaries in securing EB-5 funding. However, entrepreneurs should be prepared to put up a lot of money upfront in administrative and travel expenses, and endure long wait times.