Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks & Weisberg, Realtors: Louisville Real Estate Blog

December Briefing: Website Updates, Toys for Tots and More

Happy Holidays! December can sometimes be a slow time for real estate but at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors® we are just getting started. Here are just some of the things we’ve been working on this month to better our services for YOU!

On Monday, we wrapped up our Toys for Tots charity campaign! We collected over 40 toys because of our 2017 Toys for Tots Charity Luncheon for staff! If you couldn’t donate during our Toy for Tots campaign, there’s still time! Visit the local Toys for Tots website to see how you can donate new and unwrapped toys to share the love this holiday season! 

Our 2017 Toys for Tots Charity Luncheon is only the beginning of our Merry Mondays this December! Every Monday we have fun and exciting holiday activities planned for the entire office. Monday, December 11th is our Ugly Sweater Day and Monday, December 18th is our Annual Cookie Exchange! 

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Introducing Jamie Pilon

Happy Holidays! It’s finally the holiday season which means it’s also the season of families reconnecting. We know quite a bit about family here at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors®. Family is an important aspect of our company. Multiple generations of the Parks and Weisberg families have worked here for years and many of our agents are attracted to our company because of our family atmosphere. 

Family tradition is exactly what drew Jamie Pilon to real estate. Ellen Shaikun, a real estate agent with 25 years of experience and Jamie’s mom, had been asking her to join her in the business for nearly 13 years. The timing had never been right for Jamie. She had been busy working in sales for the past 13 years until she decided it was the time for a change.

Pursuing real estate as her second career would allow her to support her family and fulfill her desire to help others. It only took a short time for Jamie to jump into her new career. She immediately began working as an unlicensed assistant for Ellen while she focused on studying for her real estate license. Soon after gaining her license, she established herself as an agent and continues to work with Ellen to learn the tips and tricks of the real estate business. 

Jamie may be newer to the real estate scene than some but her background in sales elevates her and makes her a force to be reckoned...

An Innovator's Perspective

For some, the attraction of the home industry starts young. Maybe their family was a part of it and they grew up around it, like for Alex Hart. Or maybe they naturally had the desire for it. The interests for each person diversifies into interior design, construction, remodeling, real estate and more, giving us an ever-changing industry full of innovation.

Kyle Roth is one of these people. A driven innovator who only recently came on to the real estate scene. In only his second year as an agent, he has developed quickly into one of the up and coming agents. How exactly did he get his start in real estate?

“Prior to getting into real estate, I was in the cosmetic industry. I loved the creativity but I wanted something new, different and exciting. I had always wanted to break into real estate but never knew how. I decided to take a chance… and enrolled in real estate classes.”

After working 50 hours a week plus taking real estate classes, he passed with flying colors. The next decision? Finding a broker that worked with him to help him succeed in all ways. 

“There were many reasons I chose Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors...

How We're Giving Back to Those in Need

In 1947, Major Bill Hendricks observed that many children in his community were going to receive a present, if anything at all, for Christmas. He launched a campaign to collect toys for local children and collected 5000 toys the first year. The first toy ever collected? A handmade doll. The next year saw the Marine Corps adopt Toys for Tots. This move rebranded Toys for Tots as the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves Toys for Tots program and expanded the program nationwide.

Today Toys for Tots is a widely known and renowned charity with a rich history in helping spread positivity and Christmas spirit. The Toys for Tots program continues to grow and receive support from all kinds of celebrities. Musicians, movie stars and even First Ladies, such as John Wayne, Frank Sinatra, Brooke Shields, Andy Griffith and Clint Eastwood, Barbara Bush, Nancy Reagan and Michelle Obama, promoted the program.

Even in the early days of Toys for Tots, companies participated in any way they could. Some threw massive sponsored events. In 1990, Toys for Tots broke onto the big screen with a three week promotion sponsored by three companies, raising nearly $3 million dollars. Other companies held their doors open as collection sites for Toys for Tots. 

Last year, Toys for Tots raised over $280 million dollars, their second best year, to help children in need. For the 70th anniversary of the Toys for Tots program, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices...

Graphic Designer Turned Real Estate Agent?

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Real estate agents are an interesting kind of people. Take a random sampling of agents in a room and they won’t share the same pathway to become an agent. Their different and diverse backgrounds gives each agent individualized challenges and strengths. We’ve discussed only a few of our agents, yet each has their own story.

One of our Master Realtors®, Louise Miller, shared her story of struggling to decide her career path while dealing with a move, subbing and her two children. Another Millennial Realtor®, Jacob Suell, spoke of his realization that real estate was the right choice for him, rather than continuing in college. 

Molly Korfhage’s story is also unique.

Molly started her professional career as a graphic designer. After 20+ years in the business, she decided that she wanted to combine her two passions; graphics and everything about homes. Becoming a Realtor® was the logical next step. She enrolled into a real estate school and eventually passed her exams. She left her job as a Senior Art Director at a marketing and design firm in Louisville to pursue her second career as a Realtor® at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors®

Her best real estate tip for new agents? 

Our Property Management's Secret...

Here at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks & Weisberg, Realtors® we have a little secret that we wanted to share with you. Our Property Management team launched their very own blog! They’ve been working incredibly hard on this new blog and already have some posts on the members that make up their team. Get a taste of their content here and then visit pm.bhhs.com/blog to view the entire post!

I actually stumbled into property management. Before coming toParks & Weisberg, Realtors® Property Management Division, I was offered a position in property management with a local property management company. I am a great people person, professional and organized which helped me in my property management career. My favorite thing about property management is meeting new people, networking and assisting owners with their biggest investment! Outside of work, I love to spend time with my kids at their sporting events and attend Louisville games. Go Cards! 

I sold real estate before in Southern Indiana plus I love houses and want to invest in property myself, so why not do it for a living? Property management is much harder than it looks! With...

Staying Relevant in a Changing Market

Real estate agents have an insanely competitive job with only the best agents succeeding. With that in mind, how do our agents stay on top of their game? Patience, perseverance and ambition to succeed helps to make an agent successful but that can benefit an agent so much. Practice is one of the keys to success. At Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors®, we provide numerous trainings on different topics that an agent will encounter throughout their career. 

One of these trainings is what we refer to as New Agent Training. This program gives our new agents, whether new to the real estate game or new to the company, weekly training that includes sales and technical skills that allow our agents to list and sell with confidence! Our 90 Days to Success program allows our agents to put into practice what they learn each week as they apply new skills with daily and weekly tasks. The training also walks agents through various resources including our REsource Center, VoicePad, Lead REsource, Marketing REsource, email and phone system. Once an agent completes the New Agent Training, they can retake the training at any time or sit in on a specific training. A variety of trainings are also offered online which can allow an agent to learn on their own schedule!

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Client Appreciation Event

What exactly is appreciation? A quick search defines appreciation as the recognition and enjoyment of the good qualities of someone or something but this word is more than a simple definition. Showing appreciation for someone spreads positivity and joy, much of what we need right now. We value appreciation here at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors® which is why we are hosting a client appreciation event for our past and present clients! 

Join us on October 21st, 2017 from 10 am to 12 pm at Gallrein Farms Greenhouse for a day of family fun! We’ll be providing coffee, milk and donuts in the morning with a photo booth to take your perfect fall family portrait and fun fall coloring pages with endless crayons. 

After you enjoy the morning refreshments, enjoy various activities at the farm! Contact your agent to get more information about the activity list and what's included in your invite! Check out all of the activities to participate in below:

If those activities aren’t your thing, don’t worry! We’ll have several chances to win prizes too! First up is a giveaway for several prizes. Oh and don’t forget to come in costume! We’ll also be having a...

He Took a Chance on Real Estate and Found Success

Have you taken ever taken a leap of faith? Something so big that you put everything into making your leap a success? Taking a chance is scary but the potential reward makes the leap worth taking. Jacob Suell knows exactly how taking chances can lead to big rewards.

Before becoming a real estate agent, Jacob graduated from Trinity High School and enrolled at the University of Louisville. He studied finance and marketing for a year before realizing this wasn’t exactly what he wanted to do. His inspiration for a career in real estate? Both of his parents owned their own construction companies when he was growing up. 

At the age of 19, he took his leap of faith. He left school to pursue a career in real estate and hasn’t looked back since. He’s been an agent for about five months now at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors® and was originally taken under the wing of one of our Master Realtors®, Ellen Shaikun. She helped introduce him to the world of real estate and all of its intricacies by giving Jacob a chance to hold open houses. Even today, Ellen continues to help Jacob by showing him the ropes of real estate. 

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Dave Parks: Next President of GLAR

Earlier this year we announced that Dave Parks, our Broker / Owner, was selected by the members of the Greater Louisville Association of Realtors®, GLAR, to serve as the next President Elect. On September 14th, he was officially inducted as the President Elect of GLAR. This week we wanted to reflect on Dave’s journey to success through hard work, grit and dedication.  

Dave is a Louisville native and graduated from St. Xavier High School in 1980. After graduation, he attended The Ohio State University where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He graduated Magna Cum Laude with Distinction. He married his lovely wife Jenny in March of 1986; they are celebrating 31 years together this year. 

Dave also served in the Marines holding several positions including Operations Officer Recruiting Station from 1997-1998, Executive Officer Recruiting Station at The Ohio State University and Southern Ohio Market from 1998-1999, Officer Selection Officer at Ohio State University from 1999-2000 and Assistant for Officer Procurement in 2000-2001 for the 4th Marine Corps District. 

Dave has managed and led people at all levels throughout his 25+ year career. In addition to running a successful real estate company, he is also the Chairman of the Long Range Planning Committee for Big Spring Country Club, a member of The Louisville Building Industry Association and Business Network International...

Meet Alex Hart: Building Her Business

When you think of the word ‘career’ what comes to mind? Most likely you think of your current career path – where you are and where you want to go. It could be that you are thinking of changing your career. If you are considering Real Estate as a new career, you aren’t alone. According to research done by the National Association of Realtors® in 2017, only 4% of Realtors® describe real estate as their first career. For many agents, this means they have had some experience in a field related to real estate even before they are licensed.  

Enter Alex Hart, a new licensee who’s first career as a Veterinary Assistant lasted for 7 years. Her interest in real estate started as a child. Growing up with a father who had his own business as a general contractor, she began learning everything about the housing business from the ground up. 

 When Alex began to consider a new career, becoming a Real Estate Agent was obviously the next step. She enrolled in Century Real Estate School and soon after completing the coursework, she passed her exam to become a licensed Realtor®. Then she picked her brokerage, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors®

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Wedding Bell Frenzy: Olivia's Fairytale Wedding

As the air cools, the leaves turn and autumn begins, wedding season is coming to a close for many while the heat is on for two of our Realtors®, Dana Vetrano and Olivia Wrocklage, as their wedding dates get closer! Last week we shared the stunning story of Dana Vetrano and her soon-to-be husband, Michael Sansbury, growing together through many challenges and this week we wanted to share Olivia’s journey of love! 

How Olivia and AJ Peake met is reminiscent of a fairytale. Five years ago, Olivia serving as a bridesmaid at her sister’s wedding. Her escort down the aisle was AJ Peake. She had never met AJ but they hit it off immediately. Soon after the wedding, they began to date.

Both having a passion for travel and exploration, over the years they took numerous vacations together and traveled far and wide. 

Olivia couldn’t have been more surprised than the night AJ asked her to marry him. They had been making dinner, another activity they enjoyed together, when AJ told her he bought a new dessert wine. After dinner, he ran upstairs to grab the bottle and showed it to her.

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Wedding Bell Frenzy: Dana's Dash to the Finish

September typically signals the end of wedding season but this year it begins the wedding season for two of our Realtors®, Dana Vetrano and Olivia Wrocklage. As their wedding dates creep closer, they rush to perfect the final details of their special day. This week we wanted to feature how Dana met, and fell in love, with her fiancé. 

Before Dana met her now-fiancé, Michael Sansbury, she never could have imagined all they would have conquered together. Dana had signed up for an online dating service, Match.com, and before she knew it, she had matched with Michael. They started dating soon after.

As their relationship got more serious, Dana asked Michael to be her RCIA sponsor, someone who served as a support system while she entered the Catholic faith. Michael supported her throughout the entire 15 month process. While Dana had Michael by her side, her favorite moment to experience next to him was her Baptism and Confirmation. That day will remain a special day for both of them.

Michael surprised her everyday with his thoughtfulness and love for her no matter what challenges presented themselves. The day Michael proposed was no different. One afternoon they were sitting on Michael’s sofa talking about their potential future together when he did something incredible.

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How a Biology Major Became a Business Intern

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks & Weisberg, Realtors® has a tradition of hiring interns every summer to give them a place to exercise their knowledge and a platform to learn new ways to aid them in the future. This year Parks & Weisberg, Realtors® employed a total of three interns! Our property management interns, Luke and Kate, wrote their introductions on our property management blog

Hello! My name is Elsa and I am an intern at Parks & Weisberg, Realtors®! I am currently junior at the University of Louisville majoring in Biology. My future career aspiration is to work in cancer research to help find a definitive cure. This August marks one year that I’ve worked at Parks & Weisberg, Realtors®. My journey with Parks & Weisberg, Realtors® started in May of 2016 when I first began my internship. 

My main responsibility for the summer was handling all print marketing for our agents including postcards, business cards, brochures, flyers, newspaper ads and magazine spreads. I have also enjoyed working on our website, geographic analysis, recruiting letters, conducting our Tech Trainings every Friday and other administrative tasks. I took a short break to return to school in Chicago for a semester that fall. 

When I returned for the winter, Dave and Judie Parks welcomed me back with open arms....

How One Daring Move Absolutely Changed Her Life

At Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors®, we believe that age isn’t an obstacle to success. We value the differences between our masters and our millennials because we know those differences are strengths. This week we wanted to introduce one of our Master Realtors®, Louise Miller. The story of how she became a Realtor® is truly inspiring as well as her interests outside of real estate.

Louise, then a teacher, had just moved to Louisville with two little boys in tow, one 5 and the other 7. Since she moved in the middle of the year, she signed up to be a sub and was waiting for a position. Louise became close with her agent during her hunt to find her new home in Louisville. That’s when her Realtor® told her something astonishing. 

“She said to me ‘You ought to be selling real estate’ and I said ‘Oh no I don’t think so’. And she said ‘You remember all the details of the houses you go into… It could be a house I showed to you two weeks ago and you could tell me what color the bathroom was…’ ”. 

Thinking real estate wasn’t for her, she turned her attention back to teaching and subbed throughout May. Subbing made it difficult to watch her young boys as they were in preschool and first grade. The idea of becoming...

Norton Commons - An Incredible Start for a Vibrant Pioneering Community

Louisville is a diverse and eclectic city which is reflected by the cultures offered in the countless communities within our city. Norton Commons is one of the newest communities spanning over 500 acres and which offers lifestyle choices as unique as the architecture and community itself!

So how did Norton Commons transform from farmland into one of Louisville’s hottest neighborhoods? At the beginning of the 20th century, a man by the name of George Norton had a passion for television and farming. These passions combined to create WAVE-TV which regularly featured agricultural segments pertaining to local farmers. Norton’s passion for television led to the nickname of his estate, WAVE farm.

After Norton’s passing, the WAVE farm was designated to be a new kind of subdivision. Mrs. Mary Norton Shands, Norton’s daughter, hired 2 local planners, Charles Osborn and David Tomes. Together they agreed to build the development in the style of New Urbanism, an innovative design concept that encourages environmental awareness with dedicated common spaces and features a wide array of housing. Andres Duany, a town planner at the center of the New Urbanism movement, was asked to help create a community that would connect people in a new way.

Today Norton Commons continues this tradition by providing a little something for everyone! You can stroll through one of the numerous parks, relax with afternoon tea in the Rose Garden or take a dip in Jimson...

Iroquois Park

Welcome back to our blog! We wanted to focus on some of the most vastly appreciated and integrated parts of Louisville, our parks. No matter which neighborhood you are in Louisville, there’s never a park far from you. Plus, our parks always have some kind of activity planned. This makes our parks the perfect place to visit, no matter what you are interested in. Since our parks are a major part of our city, we will be doing a series all about the wonderful park systems in our area and all they have to offer! 

Today we wanted to feature Iroquois Park. This gorgeous park is located LOCATION! Planned by Frederick Law Olmstead, this parks preserves the area’s natural features including its vast wooded hills. The special feature of this park is the open Iroquois Amphitheater that can accommodate up to 2,366 people! Iroquois also sports a road, leading to the top of the park, which can be used by pedestrians and cyclists only.

Check out everything they have planned for the month of August!

Next week, we will be talking about everything Shelby Park has to offer!

Comment below on your favorite park activity and why!

We’d love to hear...

Easy Moving Tips

Moving is stressful and it’s something that seemingly never ends. When you tell people you are moving, they will inevitably tell you the millions of things you’ll need to do or recommend various things to make the move easier. Then you’ll need to schedule a mover, pack everything up and coordinate the entire move, whether across town or across the country, all while taking care of kids and/or pets.

We’ve put together some quick tips that can help you through all of your packing!

  • Go to your local grocery store to ask for any extra boxes they might have from unpacking their shipments of groceries.
  • Ask your friends and family if they have any leftover boxes they aren’t going to use. It may be useful to post something on Facebook to spread the word!
  • If your work uses a large amount of paper, it’s likely they order paper in bulk! Ask if you can have the leftover boxes for your move.
  • Another option could be picking up some clear, plastic storage bins. Though these are more expensive, they are more ecofriendly and they are reusable! We recommend packing items in these bins that will be in storage after you move like decorations, opposite season clothing, etc.
  • Don’t forget to purchase several large rolls of heavy-duty packing tape to close all of your boxes! You’ll also need a marker and duct tape to help mark your boxes too.
  • Start saving your newspaper! You can use this to wrap your breakable items.
  • Start small! Packing over several days can help break up the process so you don’t get so overwhelmed.
  • Pack the non-essentials first. Take photos and decor off the wall and pack up unused blankets (another...

Ball Homes University

July is a very busy new home month! Not only do we have Homearama activities, Ball Homes University 2017 is officially in session!

People attend Homearama for a variety of reasons - like the latest home décor, what's new in technology as well as innovative ideas for new construction. Many visitors are dreaming of their first home and Homearama certainly provides a glimpse of luxury homes, but if you are looking for a more modest version for a brand new home, Ball Homes is certainly worth checking out! 

So, where do you even start with building a home? This process can seem daunting but Ball Homes, a builder of new homes in the Louisville area, has come up with a solution, Ball Homes University. I interviewed Michaela Julian, New Construction Accounts Coordinator here at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, Realtors®, to find out how Ball Homes University aims to explain the new construction process from the ground up.

Elsa: What exactly is Ball Homes University? What purpose does it serve?

Michaela: With the market as hot as it is, New Construction homes are becoming a go-to option for many families and Realtors. Ball Homes University is a one of a kind opportunity to get the first look at new construction homes. Our aim is to give homeowners and agents, insider information on the building process. Homeowners may be interested in new trends in construction materials and how building codes are ever changing. Our class can also help prepare agents for the homebuilding process, coaching for anxious buyers, and provide views of homes at each stage of the construction process.  For most people it is easier to explain a process that you have actually seen and understand why and how things...

Our Easy Guide to Renting

Hello everyone!

Welcome back to our blog, where we share our real estate advice, stories and information with you. We wanted to take a moment and thank everyone who read and commented on our last blog post, Homearama 2017. The winner will be announced at the end of this blog post so stay tuned!

Today we will talk about the rental process. For many people, renting a house or apartment is their first introduction into real estate.  For others, it may be a brief stay between homes while looking for the perfect house. The market can be confusing, especially when you aren’t sure where to start your search. We’ve come up with a few tips for you to use during the entire process! 

Your Needs Versus Your Wants

Location, location, location. Where you choose to live is defined by your lifestyle. Where do you work? What are your hobbies and interest? What do you spend your time doing after work? And then there is your budget, what can you afford to spend and what do you want to spend?

Before you begin looking for your new home, you should define your needs. A need is usually determined by physical or lifestyle requirements. A want is something you could live without. These can vary person to person but pretty much have a similar theme. The best way...