BlueLeaf Marketing Hits the Road in North Tarrant
May 3, 2013

blr vwThe new BlueLeaf VW Beetle is on the road and turning heads in North Tarrant County.  Watch for the BlueLeaf VW cruising through your neighborhood, showing properties and visiting listings.

Thanks to Scott and his great team of designers and installers at wraps1.com for helping us create the perfect design.  We really appreciate the effort you made to get it right.   See you on the road everyone!

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Jimmy Ramey Reaches Next Real Estate Milestone
July 8, 2012

Blue Leaf Agent, Jimmy Ramey, figures out the recipe for success in real estate – delivering service that is so remarkable that people tell friends and family about their experience.  Referrals are the centerpiece of every successful real estate agent’s story and Jimmy’s story is no different.  As a result of earning his client’s trust and garnering referrals, Jimmy expects to exceed his goal for 2012.  As the real estate market in North Texas continues to heat up, Jimmy is positioned to take his real estate business to the next level.  Coming from the restaurant industry where great service is crucial, Jimmy understands how important it is to WOW each client with remarkable service.  “It’s always great to get a referral from a past customer — it lets me know that I’ve done my job,” says Jimmy Ramey.  “Many thanks to all my past clients and others who have referred me – referrals keep me busy and being busy is what I love!”  To learn more about how word-of-mouth marketing can take your business to the next level, check out one of Blue Leaf Realty’s favorite authors – Andy Sernovitz.

A Whirlwind Central Texas Real Estate Tour
June 13, 2012

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2012 Cool House Tour
Austin, TX

This past week, Liana and I toured the real estate markets of Austin, San Antonio, and Houston.  It all started on Sunday at the Cool House Tour in Austin, revealing that Austin is still keeping it weird in spite of the crazy traffic.  Austin is the Texas front-runner when it comes to energy efficient green-built homes.  Many of the homes we toured were really amazing.  The traffic however was not so cool.  After two full days of real estate site visits in Austin, we headed out for San Antonio via Wimberly, TX where we visited with an innovative architect named Neel Morton.  He took us on a private tour of his soon to be private residence that is currently under construction.  Coolest features were the use of construction material made out of recycled pallets and the cooling tower.  Thanks Mr. Morton for the tour, the hospitality, and the explanation of how rammed earth construction works.  Then it was on to San Antonio where we visited some great mixed-use developments and spent some time with commercial developers, Ed Cross and Marty Wender.  Mr. Wender is the developer who brought Sea World to Texas along with many other major employers.  Who knows maybe Disney will follow – Disney TX just makes sense!  Many thanks to Ed Cross and Marty Wender for their time and willingness to share what has worked and not worked for them in the real estate industry.  Also, thanks to Mr. Cross for the hands-on tour of his exceptional project, The Vistana, close to downtown San Antonio.   Mr. Cross and his architect did a fantastic job on the design of this building.  On a green building note, we also visited with Lawrence Jetter from AECT, a company that makes compressed earth bricks.  Very cool – thanks for the time Mr. Jetter.  After seeing some really neat stuff in San Antonio, we were off to Houston where we visited City Centre, talked with AMREIT officials, and visited

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Discovery Green in Houston, TX

Discovery Green Park.  The park is a homerun and is adjacent to the George R. Brown Convention Center on one side and downtown Houston on the other.  It is a must see while visiting Houston.  Thanks to site manager, William Flowers, for a terrific tour and education about all the sustainable features built into the park.  Of course, there were many more site visits and much more to talk about but my time is up.  Suffice it to say that the real estate markets in Austin, San Antonio, and Houston are doing well just like North Texas is.  Thanks to Dr. Fred Forgey of UTA for putting the trip together.

Kicking the Can Is Not A Solution
October 23, 2011

Kicking the can down the road has become a trend in residential and commercial real estate but the trend may be hurting more than it’s helping.  It seems that many have been slow to acknowledge the full extent of the long-term consequences of the unrestrained lending practices which occurred between 2001 and 2007.  Now, it seems that many believe that burying their heads in the sand until the mess blows over is a reasonable strategy.  The sad truth is the US economy is still limping along and many banks are still overburdened with non-performing and under-performing real estate loans.  As a result, kicking the can is en vogue.

 Although there have been small signs the economy is truly improving, there are many, if not more, signs which suggest the economic recovery is sputtering.  For instance, lagging home sales have continued to weigh down home builder profits.   In addition, Fed Chairman Bernanke has publicly stated that he is at a loss as to how to explain the sagging economy’s lackluster performance.  Could it be that “extend and pretend” or “kicking the can” is not a viable solution and that, without a housing recovery, the broader economy will merely continue to limp along.  It is difficult to see how kicking the can further down the road is going to accomplish much.  Maybe it’s time to get real about the economic state of affairs which starts by stopping the pretense that things are better than they really are.  Below are a few suggestions:

  • lock in the capital gains tax rate for a defined period of time
  • release trapped real estate assets into the marketplace
  • create tax incentives for investors who purchase distressed assets
  • discontinue governmental policies that encourage moral hazard
  • resist the temptation to over-regulate the lending industry
  • discontinue the practice of bailing out businesses that are deemed too big to fail

Addressing these very core problems in the real estate sector will allow us to make progress without kicking the can, and the broader economy is sure to benefit!

BlueLeaf Agent, Jimmy Ramey, Delivers Remarkable Service Again
September 24, 2011

Jimmy Ramey

We are excited to announce that BlueLeaf Agent, Jimmy Ramey, has helped another client purchase their first home in North Tarrant County.  Jimmy’s standard of excellence is unparalleled.  We are also very excited for his clients who are now happy homeowners.  Congratulations to Jimmy and his clients and thanks for fulfilling BlueLeaf’s Mission.  In a very short time, Jimmy is on pace to become a top producer in real estate.  BlueLeaf Realty looks forward to being a part of his continued success.  To learn more about Jimmy, please visit www.jimmyramey.com.  Whether you’re buying your first home or your last home, Jimmy Ramey is a Realtor who will take excellent care of you.

Sealing the Envelope
June 12, 2011

 Blog by Liana Oram, Co-Founder of Blue Leaf Realty in Fort Worth, TX             

One of the areas of consideration when “going green” is evaluating and improving the building envelope.   These are the parts of the building that separate the interior space from the exterior.  This shell includes the foundation, exterior walls, windows, roof, exterior doors, and floors.  When you think about energy efficiency, this just makes sense.  When it is cold outside, we want to be warm.  When it is hot, we seek the cool interior.  Any transfer between the inside and the outside results in greater energy usage for us to be comfortable.  The two main action areas of closing the envelope are sealing and insulating – the main goal being to separate the inside and outside air.  If you are going for a specific GREEN certification, you need to be sure to consider these issue during the design stage of the building, but to seal an existing building you can use simple materials such as caulk and advanced materials such as OwenCornings new Energy Complete sealant. 

 The roof and windows are two very important considerations when sealing the envelope.  The options for roofs range from green roofs, which can be as simple or complex as you choose, to the installation of solar panels – a great way to create your own energy.  Green roofs also help prevent the heat island effect in urban areas – an extra plus!  Windows also have insulation and coating that helps let light into the building while reducing heat/cold exchange.  These low-e windows are increasingly common in all types of construction and are even part of many building codes. Doors and the efficiency of the HVAC system  play a huge role in helping to seal the building envelope and keep the occupants comfortable and healthy.  One interesting consideration when sealing a building is managing CO2 content.  Again, there are simple and complex solutions.  Opening the windows and allowing for a cross breeze refreshes the inside air.  There are also CO2 sensors that work with the HVAC system to bring in outside air when a specified level of CO2 is detected. 

When considering “going green” it is important to realize that there are many steps, considerations, and options – sealing the envelope is just one.  Determining your goals at the onset can help you focus your attention and resources in such a way to achieve maximum results and to take another step toward sustainability.

Growth in a Tough Market
March 26, 2010

It’s not impossible for an independent real estate company to grow and prosper. BlueLeaf is proof that, even during difficult times, a company can grow. The key is service – service that exceeds expectations. The best small companies know that survival and growth depend on whether its people are willing to deliver great service. That’s why we strive to deliver remarkable service everyday. We are always looking for ways to deliver on our promise. If you’ve recently bought or sold a home, share with us what worked and what didn’t. We would love to know!

BlueLeaf Open House
March 16, 2010

Join us this Friday at the BlueLeaf office from 4-6 pm as we celebrate the company’s transition from S.E.O. & Associates to BlueLeaf Realty. BlueLeaf is growing and we want to say thank you to those of you who have helped us along the way. It’s our way of saying thanks. We hope to see you Friday at this casual, come & go event.