Terra Firma Winter 2018

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INSIDE THIS ISSUE NLC18 The Land Market: Current Conditions & Outlook The Intersection of Environmental Factors and the Valuation of Rural Properties Strategic Planning for Your Land Real Estate Business

WINTEr 2018 | Vol. 72 No. 1


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THE VOICE OF LAND Table of Contents rlI News Brief From National



Winter 2018 Edition An Official Publication of the REALTORS® Land Institute Published by the REALTORS® Land Institute 430 North Michigan Avenue Chicago, Illinois 60611 Phone: 1-800-441-5263 Fax: 1-312-329-8633 E-mail: rli@realtors.org Website: www.rliland.com


rlI Chapter News


Member News




lANDU Education Update


rlI lands Five legislative Victories in 2017


The land Market: Current Conditions & outlook


The Intersection of Environmental Factors and the Valuation of rural Properties


Strategic Planning for Your land real Estate Business


Yes, You Should Invest in land real Estate


Earning The Elite AlC Designation As A Young Professional


Top land real Estate Apps for 2018



Publisher Aubrie Kobernus, Chief Executive Officer Editorial Director Jessa Friedrich, Marketing Manager Contributing Editor Amanda Jenkins, Education Manager Contributing Editor Bill Stanton, Chapter & Membership Specialist

Copyright 2018. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited. Views expressed within the publication are not necessarily endorsed by the REALTORS® Land Institute and information should not be construed as recommendations for any course of action regarding financial, legal, or accounting matters.




PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE It is with great pride that I have taken the oath of office to become the 2018 National President of the REALTORS® Land Institute. I am honored to serve at such an exciting time in RLI’s history. As president, I look forward to continuing our momentum in building a more member-centric, value-providing organization that all members can be proud to call their own. Leadership and staff continue to work diligently towards achieving the goals set out in our 2017-2020 Strategic Plan to establish us further as “The Voice of Land.” In line with that plan, our marketing efforts are undergoing an overhaul to better position RLI to reach the target markets it has set out to serve in the industry. Traditionally, RLI has been perceived of as an organization for farm, ranch, and timberland agents, even though our members have always also dealt in commercial, residential, and development properties. Due to this perception in the general marketplace, one of our initiatives this year is to better communicate the opportunities RLI has available for its agents in the commercial and residential land space. Another major initiative we will be working on is to position ourselves as a resource for landowners and investors. To achieve these goals, for the first time, we will be investing in paid online advertising and powerful tools to help us better reach our target market segments and to better communicate with our members. Additionally, we will continue to build relationships with industry publications and press contacts to ensure we are increasing our exposure and presence as industry experts. On the education front, we have completed the deep dive into our LANDU Education Program and will be working in 2018 to update our curriculum. RLI has brought on an instructional designer to lend his expertise and work with staff, instructors, and the Education Committee as we navigate through this process. We look forward to releasing updated courses throughout the coming year — keep an eye out!



Another pillar of the strategic plan focuses on developing our RLI Chapters. Last year, we invested in bringing on another staff member to serve as a Chapter & Membership Specialist to work closely with the chapters to provide support and guidance to help make them as strong as possible. The organization also invested in providing our chapters access to RLI national’s database to better manage and recruit members. Through this initiative they also now have the ability to set-up their own RLI branded chapter website. Additionally, leadership and staff have been working hard getting ready for our annual National Land Conference (NLC18) which will be held in my home state of Tennessee in Nashville from March 12-14. Members on the 2018 National Land Conference planning task force have been working closely with staff to ensure this year’s conference is the most valuable one yet for attendees. RLI has secured Mark Dotzour, PhD and Michael Bull, CCIM, as keynote speakers as well as a strong line-up of industry experts to provide valuable takeaways and expertise for attendees. Hope to see you all there! Please also save the date to join us in Arlington, Texas, for the 2018 LANDU Education Week June 3-11 and keep an eye out for the course line-up to be announced soon! This event is a unique opportunity to complete all six courses towards the education requirement for the Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) Designation. As a member of RLI, you make all the difference. You are the lifeblood of our organization and the power behind our prestige. Thank you for being a member and for your part in keeping the organization strong. If you are in the land business, RLI is where you belong! Sincerely,

Jimmy Settle, ALC 2018 RLI National President


MEET RLI’S 2018 BOARD OF DIRECTORS The 2018 RLI Executive Committee Jimmy Settle, ALC RLI President Century 21 Platinum Properties Clarksville, TN settle.land@gmail.com Jimmy Settle, ALC, has been a licensed REALTOR® in Tennessee and Kentucky as well as a member of the Clarksville Association of REALTORS® (CAR) since 1993. Settle joined RLI in 2000 before receiving his ALC Designation in 2004. He has been an active within the Institute as President of the RLI Tennessee Chapter, Chairman of the Education Committee, and Chairman of the ALC Designation Committee. He has also served on various CAR Committees before becoming President of the Association in 2007. During this time, he also served as a Tennessee Association of REALTORS® Director. Jeramy Stephens, ALC RLI President-Elect National Land Realty Little Rock, AR jstephens@nationalland.com Jeramy Stephens, ALC, is a graduate of Arkansas State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture Business with an emphasis in Farm Management and Ag Marketing. He specializes in row crop farm sales in the Mid-South Delta, timberland properties throughout the South, and hunting / recreational properties. He has also become active in commercial land in the past several years. He earned the elite ALC Designation in 2012 through RLI. Jeramy has served RLI as the Vice Chair of the 2016 Education Committee and as the 2016 President of the RLI Arkansas Chapter.

Kyle Hansen, ALC RLI Vice President Hertz Real Estate Services Nevada, IA KyleH@hertz.ag Kyle Hansen, ALC, with Hertz Real Estate Services, has served as Chair of RLI National’s Future Leaders Committee and is an active member of the RLI Iowa Chapter as Chair of the Land Trends & Values Committee. He is dedicated to seeing the new strategic plan through to enhance the value of an RLI membership, its Land University (LANDU) education program for land real estate professionals across the country, and to ensure RLI continues to be “The Voice of Land” in the real estate industry. He plans to continue to put the RLI membership’s needs first. Brandon Rogillio, ALC RLI Immediate Past President Rogillio Real Estate Baton Rouge, LA brandon@rogilliorealestate.com Brandon Rogillio, ALC, is the Owner/Broker of Rogillio Real Estate in Baton Rouge, LA, and began practicing real estate as a profession while studying economics at Southeastern Louisiana University. In the spring of 2009, he earned the Accredited Land Consultant Designation through RLI. Among the marketplace, Rogillio is one of the most respected and trusted land experts. He is extremely involved in his community and has played a large role in the recovery of his community after devastating floods swept through the area.




KYLE HANSEN, ALC, ELECTED AS RLI VICE PRESIDENT The rEAlTorS® land Institute proudly announces Kyle Hansen, AlC, with Hertz real Estate Services in Nevada, IA, as their 2018 Vice President. Hansen was inducted on November 3 in Chicago at rlI’s Induction Ceremony which took place alongside the 2017 rEAlTorS® Conference & Expo. In response, Hansen released the following statement: “I am very humbled and honored to represent the rEAlTorS® land Institute’s membership as their 2018 Vice President. There have been so many great leaders of this organization that have worked to make rlI what it is today, and I look forward to following in their footsteps. To continue to put our membership’s needs first, and assist in making us grow. I sincerely appreciate the responsibility our membership has granted upon me and look forward to working on their behalf, thank you.” The election also adds three At-large Directors to the rlI Board for the first-time. In an effort to give members a stronger voice into the direction of the organization, the 2017 Board approved the addition of these elected seats moving forward. out of the ten candidates running for an At-large position, rlI is proud to announce the election of Cathy Cole, AlC; Bart Miller, AlC; and rick Taylor, AlC onto the 2018 rlI Board of Directors.

The 2018 RLI Board Members Bob Turner, ALC NAR Executive Committee Representative Southern Properties Cordova, TN bturner@southernprop.net

Sam Kain, ALC Treasurer Farmers National Company West Des Moines, IA skain@farmersnational.com

Norma Nisbet, ALC ALC Designation Committee Chair Vista Properties & Investments St. Louis, MO norma.nisbet@att.net

Fletcher Majors, ALC Education Committee Chair Great Southern Land, LLC Wetumpka, AL fletcher@greatsouthernland.com

Ray Brownfield, ALC Government Affairs Committee Chair Land Pro, LLC Oswego, IL ray@landprollc.us

Caleb McDow, ALC Future Leaders Committee Chair Crosby & Associate, Inc. Winter Haven, FL caleb@crosbydirt.com




Rick Taylor, ALC At-Large Director (2018-2019) Mossy Oak Properties Forest Investments, Inc. McComb, MS rtaylor@mossyoakproperties.com

Cathy Cole, ALC At-Large Director (2018) Heritage Texas Country Properties Brenham, TX cathy@heritagetexascountry.com

Bart Miller, ALC At-Large Director (2018) Mason & Morse Ranch Company Glenwood Springs, CO bart@ranchland.com

Russell Riggs (non-voting) RLI Gov. Affairs Liaison National Association of REALTORS® Washington, D.C. rriggs@realtors.org

Aubrie Kobernus, MBA, RCE (non-voting) Chief Executive Office REALTORS® Land Institute Chicago, IL akobernus@realtors.org

Meet Your RLI Staff Aubrie Kobernus, MBA, RCE Chief Executive Officer 312-329-8837 | akobernus@realtors.org As the CEO/Executive Vice President, Aubrie is responsible for the overall management of RLI. This includes working together with the Board of Directors to develop the vision, goals, objectives, and related policies for the organization. Within that framework, Aubrie organizes and directs the staff, programs, financial performance, and activities of the Institute. Members may contact her anytime with questions or concerns. Aubrie has been with RLI since March 2016 and achieved the REALTOR® Certified Executive (RCE) Designation in November 2017. Karen Calarco Operations Manager 312-329-8287 | kcalarco@realtors.org Karen manages RLI’s expenditures within the set budget, member records, and invoicing. Members may contact her for assistance changing their profile information, paying dues, and answering financial inquiries about their account. Karen has been with RLI since September 2007. Jessa Friedrich, MBA Marketing Manager 312-329-8353 | jfriedrich@realtors.org Jessa serves as the staff liaison for the Future Leaders Committee. She manages all aspects of RLI’s communications, branding, and marketing efforts; including for events, courses, the designation, and the organization as a whole. Members may contact her with any member or chapter news regarding awards and accomplishments, for contributions to Terra Firma or the RLI Blog, or with questions about RLI or ALC logo use. Jessa has been with RLI since March 2015.




Amanda Jenkins Education Manager 312-329-8441 | ajjenkins@realtors.org Amanda serves as the members’ staff liaison for the Education Committee. She manages the LANDU Education program as well as oversees the annual National Land Conference planning. Members may contact her with any questions regarding the LANDU Education programs, including the courses, webinars, and teleconferences. She is also the main contact for companies interested in partnering with RLI and for event speakers. Amanda has been with RLI since January 2014. Bill Stanton Chapter & Membership Specialist 312-329-8519 | bstanton@realtors.org Bill Stanton serves as the members’ staff liaison for the ALC Designation Committee and for Chapters. He works to develop a stronger relationship between national RLI and its chapters across the country in assisting them to achieve their goals. He is also the main contact for members while working through the ALC application process. Members interested starting an RLI Chapter may contact Bill. Bill has been with RLI since September 2016.



RLI DRAWS ATTENTION AT NAR ANNUAL The REALTORS® Land Institute Leadership and Staff made sure RLI had a known presence at the 2017 REALTORS® Conference & Expo in Chicago in November. Staff manned a booth in the Commercial Marketplace Education Center during the expo to raise awareness about RLI’s education, designation, and membership benefits. On November 2, RLI held a member meeting where Aubrie Kobernus, CEO; Brandon Rogillio, 2017 President; and Russell Riggs, RLI’s NAR Legislative Liaison discussed the latest RLI news and legislative insights, including saving 1031s from reform in the new tax plan. In addition to discussing this in the meeting, NAR and RLI put up three maps throughout the event where attendees could fill out an index card and tag their 1031 exchanges with pushpins to create a visual representation of their importance. The following evening, RLI hosted a well-attended Inaugural Ceremony, cosponsored by the Clarksville Association of REALTORS® and the Tennessee Association of REALTORS®, at Treehouse at Tavern on The Park where incoming leadership for the coming year was inducted, including Jimmy Settle, ALC, as President; Jeramy Stephens, ALC, as President-Elect; and Kyle Hansen, ALC, as Vice President. CEO Aubrie Kobernus thanked the outgoing leadership and board as well as staff for a successful year. The next day saw a large turnout at RLI’s Diamonds in The Rough: Transitioning Land for Development panel featuring Bob Turner, ALC; Ben Crosby, ALC; and Norma Nisbet, ALC. Over 120 people attended the session. Interest in RLI and the ALC Designation peaked as the room filled. Overall, the weekend was a great success, thanks to all who played a role in it.


$500 LEF SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE! The Land Education Foundation (LEF) contributes funds to students of the REALTORS® Land Institute’s LANDU educational programs and their Military Transition Program. They also contribute to other activities and educational conferences promoting Land and the ‘wise utilization thereof’ in the industry. Please be reminded that there are $500 scholarships available through LEF to RLI members. If you or someone you know might be interested, applications and more information on the Land Education Foundation can be found at www.landeducationfoundation.com




TOP SOCIAL POSTS IN 2017 The best in the business follow RLI on their social media pages for the latest updates and educational pieces relevant to the industry. Stay at the top of your game by following RLI on social!

Top Facebook Post Piece posted: Why Are Land Prices Staying High? Post Content: Why are land prices continuing to stay high after multiple years of lower crop prices and reduced profitability in the ag sector? Expert RLI Member Brad Hayes says one reason “is a very limited inventory of farms for sale and an abundance of capital pursuing these assets.”

Top Twitter Post Piece posted: The Art of Buying a Vineyard by Flo Sayre, ALC

FOUR MOST EXPENSIVE PROPERTIES ON THE LAND CONNECTIONS IN 2017 The Land Connections is the official member’s only listing site of the REALTORS® Land Institute. The page has a fresh updated look and a new robust mapping feature which makes searching for properties on-the-go easier than ever. With over fourteen thousand prime property listings from best in the business land professionals, this is the place to find and post properties. RLI members are able to post listings to this page at no cost as a member benefit thanks to our partners at Lands Of America and LandBrokerWebsites.com To add your properties, please contact RLI at 1-800-441-5263. Thank you to Lands of America for providing the information for our Top Properties. Learn more about these properties and others on the Land Connections at rliland.com/the-land-connections. 1. Cross Mountain Ranch $100,000,000 | 56,050 Acres Listing: Mirr Ranch Group

Post Content: Ever dream of owning a #vineyard? Here’s what you need to know #realestate #vineyards #winery #realtors

Top RLI Blog Post Piece posted: The Basics of Timberland Investing Post Content: As the general economy continues to recover and the housing market makes a comeback, wise prudent investments made in timberland now should provide excellent returns. Read the full post at rliland.com/blog



Located in northwest Colorado, the 56,050 +/- deeded acre Cross Mountain Ranch represents one of the largest and most diverse recreational and operating ranches on the market today. A wildlife preserve stretching over four counties and 168,000+/acres of leased National Forest, BLM, State and Park Service lands, the ranch is home to North America’s largest elk herd.


2. Old Fort $83,000,000 | 8,300 Acres Listing: United Country Real Estate Jeff Davis & Associates, LLC

and irrigated lands. With the Spanish Peak as its backdrop, the topography ranges from timber covered slopes, grassy hillsides, steep canyons, and large irrigated meadows. 4. Bluffs of St. Teresa $50,000,000 | 17,080 Acres Listing: Dean Saunders, ALC, Coldwell Banker Commercial Saunders Real Estate

One of the last and the LARGEST private land holdings in the Southwestern Mountains of North Carolina, the 9th most populated state in the United States. Located less than 30 minutes from Asheville, NC, the most cosmopolitan city in the Southeastern United States where they claim altitude affects attitude. 3. Antone Ranch $75,000,000 | 36,663 Acres Listing: Bart Miller, ALC, Mason Morse Ranch Company

Situated among rolling hills along the scenic shore of the Gulf of Mexico, the Bluffs of St. Teresa is over 17,000 acres of magnificent land with characteristics that are truly unique. There is nothing like it in Florida or on the northern Gulf coast today. The Bluffs of St. Teresa represents what early Florida visitors called paradise, and for a savvy land buyer, offers a rare opportunity to invest in it.

The Antone Ranch, located 100 miles east of Bend, OR, is a legacy recreational ranch consisting of approximately 36,663+/deeded acres in a large private block with exceptional water resources, including live water creeks, numerous fishing lakes,







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RLI CHAPTER NEWS The REALTORS® Land Institute offers strong and engaging chapter programs because of the superior commitment and dedication of its volunteers. RLI Chapters routinely offer local LANDU courses, information, networking opportunities, and an array of professional development programs. RLI Members may elect to join one or more RLI Chapter organizations and benefit from participation on a regional or local basis. Members must be in good standing with National to join chapters. To learn more about our chapters, visit rliland.com/about-realtors-land-institute/chapters

RLI Arkansas Chapter The RLI Arkansas Chapter recently hosted a LANDU Land 101: Fundamentals of Land Brokerage course in Little Rock, AR. LANDU-approved instructor Ben Crosby, ALC, shared his knowledge with attendees. The Chapter got the course approved for 10 hours of CE credit in Arkansas.

RLI Alabama Chapter In August, the RLI Alabama Chapter put on the LANDU Land 101: Fundamentals of Land Brokerage course taught by Fletcher Majors, ALC. The two-day course was attended by 34 students. The Chapter held its annual meeting October 3, in Montgomery, AL, in conjunction with the Alabama Association of REALTORS® Annual Convention. The Chapter put on a three-hour CE credit course called How Residential REALTORS® Can Profit From Land Sales which was led by Fletcher Majors, ALC. The Chapter installed new officers, including the 2018 President Calvin Perryman, ALC, from Troy, AL. They also awarded the 2017 Land REALTOR® of the Year title to Dave Milton, ALC (pictured), from Dadeville, AL. An education session led by a panel of ALCs on Listing to Close a Land Sale was followed by a property marketing session. They also put on a cocktail hour for attendees at Jan’s Beach House.

RLI Carolinas Chapter The RLI Carolinas Chapter had its annual membership meeting in Wilmington, NC. Lou Jewell, ALC, presented a four-hour Introduction to Land Brokerage LANDU class followed by the Chapter’s annual meeting. The 2016/2017 President Lou Jewell, ALC, passed the baton to Dustin McClure, Broker/Owner Mossy Oaks Properties Land & Luxury in Mooresville, NC. He will serve as the 2017/2018 Chapter President. He was sworn in by Johnny McAllister, ALC. Congratulations to the RLI Carolinas Chapter on being the first chapter to go live with the new RLI branded website offered by National. WINTER 2018



RLI Georgia Chapter The RLI Georgia Chapter was pleased to offer the LANDU Marketing Strategies for Real Estate Professionals course with LANDU-approved instructor Madeline Johnson. The two-day course was a well-attended, hands-on workshop held on June 3-4 by the Chapter at the Savannah Board of REALTORS®. The insights into marketing strategies were wel received by attendees who were encouraged to implement new marketing strategies into their daily business routines. The course provided 16 hours towards the ALC Designation and 14 CE credit hours for Georgia real estate licensees.

RLI Colorado and Kansas Chapters The RLI Colorado and Kansas Chapters partnered together to hold a meeting in Greeley, CO, on July 20-21. This Grain to Glass, and a Little Grass event brought over 30 chapter members, leaders, and land professionals together to learn hands-on about different types of agriculture. After meeting at the Colorado Model Railroad Museum for a brief tour and breakfast, the group boarded a bus for an agricultural tour of Weld County, CO. The tour was narrated by Kirk Goble, ALC, a LANDU-approved instructor. The chapter was able to get the tour approved for six CE credits in the state of Colorado. On Friday morning, the group met again for a marketing session and networking.

RLI Illinois Chapter The RLI Illinois Chapter announced their 2018 Chapter Officers: Luke Worrell, ALC, President; John Leezer, ALC, Vice President; and Reid Thompson, Secretary/Treasurer. Jim Erlandson, ALC, was named the Illinois Land Broker of the Year by the Chapter. Every month, the Chapter also holds either an in-person meeting or conference call with the Board of Directors, as well as meeting at Illinois Association of REALTORS® meetings.

RLI Colorado Chapter The RLI Colorado Chapter invited members to Montrose County, CO, to discover nine stellar ranches during the RLI Colorado Chapter Land Tour in June. Members got to meet and network with brokers throughout the state all while driving around ranches and getting home cooked meals from member Joey Burns’ family.



RLI Iowa Chapter The RLI Iowa Chapter installed new officers on September 12 during the RLI Iowa Chapter Board and Membership meeting in Coralville, IA. Former National RLI President, Ray Brownfield, ALC, performed the swearing-in ceremony. The new RLI Iowa Chapter leadership team plans to work hard to advance the mission of the RLI Iowa Chapter while focusing on growth and member engagement. In October, the chapter also held the LANDU Land Investment Analysis course instructed by LANDU-approved instructor Randy Hertz, ALC, at the Hertz Real Estate Office.


RLI Kansas Chapter

RLI Missouri and Kansas Chapter

The RLI Kansas Chapter had a small but great meeting early in October. While small in numbers, the state was covered well geographically. It made for interesting discussion during the market update portion of the meeting. John Rupp, ALC, was presented a plaque for his service as President of the Chapter and a dinner afterwards allowed those in attendance to continue their conversation and sharing of ideas for the Chapter in 2018.

RLI Members and land professionals from around the country came together in Kansas City, KS, at the Kansas City Regional Association of REALTORS® office from June 4-12 for the largest LANDU Education Week yet! The event had 37 attendees registered from 15 different states selling a total of 124 course registrations. In addition, 11 attendees completed all six courses at the event! On Friday, June 9, the RLI Kansas Chapter and the RLI Missouri Chapter held a joint reception for all students and instructors to network and socialize.

RLI Oklahoma Chapter The RLI Oklahoma Chapter had an exhibit booth at the Oklahoma Association of REALTORS® Annual Convention held in October in Stillwater, OK. The Chapter members that staffed the booth promoted the benefits of belonging to RLI and the networking opportunities available to them within the Chapter. After the convention, those in attendance at the Chapter’s Annual Membership Meeting heard information presented by representatives of the Stillwater FSA and USDA office. The meeting was hosted by Oklahoma AgCredit at their Stillwater facility.

RLI Minnesota Chapter The RLI Minnesota Chapter held its summer conference in beautiful Stillwater, MN, on August 24-25. RLI members, land professionals, and colleagues attended the event; including eight non-members interested in joining RLI. Participants attended seminars about Wetland Mitigation, Alternative Development Patterns, and Concept Site Analysis. A guided trolley tour brought attendees to multiple stops and allowed for in-depth conversations about Stillwater’s unique construction and development. The event conculded with a tour of the new bridge – St. Croix Crossings. The evening ended with attendees enjoying dinner aboard the Stillwater River Boat.

RLI Pacific Northwest Chapter The RLI Pacific Northwest Chapter has named Garrett Zoller, ALC, as the 2018 Chapter President. The Chapter has also named De Murray as their new Chapter Administrator. De has had a real estate license for over 20 years and sold residential property for several years. She is looking forward to assisting the chapter as they continue to grow. WINTER 2018



RLI Tennessee Chapter

RLI Virginia Chapter

RLI's 2016 National President and RLI Tennessee Chapter Secretary/Treasurer Bob Turner, ALC, spoke about the benefits of RLI at the Mississippi Association of REALTORS® Annual Convention in early October. Bob hosted a CE-approved class on Land Values & Trends which drew a large crowd.

The RLI Virginia Chapter, behind the efforts of chapter member Bill Burruss, ALC, is actively looking for interested individuals to help join the leadership team of the Chapter and lead it into the future! Please contact Bill Stanton, Chapter & Membership Specialist, if you are interested becoming a leader.

The Chapter is also actively looking for new chapter leaders to join their leadership team. Please contact Bob Turner, ALC, or Jimmy Settle, ALC.

RLI Wyoming Chapter RLI Texas Chapter The RLI Texas Chapter put on the LANDU Mineral, Oil and Property Rights course taught by LANDU-approved instructor Kurt Stanberry, Esq., in Brenham, TX. The course was attended by 50 students, most of whom are new to RLI or thinking of joining. The Chapter event was sponsored by Capital Farm Credit who provided lunch on both days of the event. The RLI Texas Chapter also offered the Google Earth for the Land Professional in November. The RLI Texas Chapter 2018 Officers and Directors were installed September 8 during the Texas Association of REALTORS® Annual Conference in Dallas. The officers inducted include: Minor Taylor, ALC, President; Rick Doak, President Elect; Von Box, Treasurer; and Jerrett Lamb, Secretary.



The RLI Wyoming Chapter was offered Wyoming Water Rights 101 & 102 classes to REALTORS® and Appraisers in Wyoming. The classes were approved for four hours of CE credit in Wyoming. The Chapter held both classes along a Water Right Searches by Legal Description and Survey Type course on June 27-28 in Buffalo, WY. The Chapter is planning to offer all three courses again in locations throughout the state.

The Wall Street Journal’s weekly real estate section

Land holdings have fast become a key component in the real estate asset portfolio of the global affluent. Investment in land development and ranch properties has steadily increased over the years, with 11% of our readers willing to pay a premium for farm and ranch properties. With land values on the rise and the notable tax benefits associated with investment, demand for farm, land and ranch properties has never been higher. Now is the best time to promote your listing to The Wall Street Journal’s powerful audience of affluent readers looking for their next investment.

AN AUDIENCE PRIMED TO INVEST Average Household Assets: $3.0MM 58% of our readers intend to buy within 5 years

For deadlines and pricing, visit classifieds.wsj.com or contact your WSJ sales representative at sales.realestate@wsj.com.

Source: 2016 WSJ. Insights Luxury Real Estate Study; % willing to pay more for farm/ranch.

© 2017 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


CONGRATULATIONS NEW ALCS Jim Vidamour, ALC Rare West Properties LLC La Veta, CO jim@rarewest.com Jim lived in rural Boulder County, attended high school and college in Boulder, CO, and has been familiar with the Spanish Peaks region for decades. He has owned various mountain, ranching, and remote properties in the area since 2001. Jim was a U.S. Coast Guard licensed boat captain, and has been a USPTA certified tennis professional for 33 years. John Robinson, ALC John F. Robinson The Woodlands, TX john@robinsonresourcesinc.com John Robinson is an independent Texas licensed broker, having grown up in a ranching family as a 7th generation Texan. He has over 30 years of experience involving rural/ranch properties, mineral ownership, and oil and gas exploration. In addition, he holds a degree in Agriculture Economics (land economics, real estate, and appraisal) from Texas A&M University, is an Accredited Land Consultant (ALC), and a Certified Professional Landman (CPL). James Bineau, ALC Coldwell Banker Mason Morse Aspen, CO thebineauteam@gmail.com James Bineau is a full service Real Estate Broker with a passion for the business. James has been chosen to be a part of Coldwell Banker Mason Morse Ranch Aspects, the ranch division of the firm, and is also a Coldwell Banker Global Luxury Specialist. His experience in ranch and land sales has qualified him to be one of 10 agents out of the entire firm of 117 agents.



Will Moore, ALC James Wm. Moore Real Estate Co. Lexington, VA will.moore@jwmre.com Will was born and raised in Lexington, Virginia. Will joined James Wm. Moore Real Estate Co. following a successful career in commercial real estate in Boston, MA, and Washington, D.C. Most recently, Will was an Associate with the private equity firm, Landmark Partners. Prior to Landmark, Will served for CBRE Capital Markets’ Debt & Equity Finance platform in Washington, D.C. Scott Whittington, ALC Landguys, LLC Springfield, IL scott@landguys.net Scott is owner and managing broker of LandGuys. He currently manages and oversees the day-to-day operations of a team of experienced land brokers specializing in farms and recreational properties. Scott has steadily driven the growth of LandGuys into one of the premier land brokerages in the Midwest. Bill Minor, ALC Whitetail Properties Indianapolis, IN bill.minor@whitetailproperties.com Bill has been an avid outdoorsman from a very early age. Growing up spending time on family farms, he developed a love for the land and the outdoors. He learned the value of hard work from an early age, helping with farm work, running a trap line, and delivering a morning and afternoon newspaper route. He enjoys hunting, fishing, outdoor activities, Colts football, and sports.


Aaron Milliken, ALC Whitetail Properties Real Estate, LLC. Grafton, IL Aaron.milliken@whitetailproperties.com Aaron Milliken, Whitetail Properties’ Team Leader and Top Producer in Illinois, is a graduate of Western Illinois University. Straight out of college, he went to work with one of the largest marketing firms in the business, while simultaneously growing a very successful guiding business of his own, before beginning his career in real estate. Kenny Herring, ALC Peoples Company Indianola, IA kenny@peoplescompany.com Kenny graduated Magna Cum Laude from Simpson College, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Management with a marketing minor. Since joining Peoples Company in 2012, Kenny has quickly become one of the top producing land agents serving landowners throughout Iowa & Missouri. Kenny is driven by a persistent work ethic and positive attitude with the motivation to satisfy all parties of a real estate transaction Caleb McDow, ALC Crosby & Associates Winter Haven, FL caleb@crosbydirt.com Caleb currently works in agricultural land sales – specializing in row crops, pasture, and citrus groves in Florida and Georgia. He holds a Bachelor degree in Business Administration from Auburn University and a Master of Science in Real Estate (MSRE) from the University of Florida. Prior to his real estate career, Caleb spent nine years flying F/A-18s for the US Navy and continues to serve in the US Navy Reserve.

Mike Lansdell, ALC Keller Williams Farm and Ranch St. Marys, GA mikelansdell@gmail.com Mike grew up in rural south Georgia, attended Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and graduated from The University of Georgia with a degree in Crop Science. He specializes in timber investment and agricultural properties. His company Wiregrass Land Group is with Keller Williams Farm and Ranch. Joe Gizdic, ALC Whitetail Properties Real Estate, LLC. Roodhouse, IL Joe.gizdic@whitetailproperties.com Gizdic has over 20 years of experience in managing tens of thousands of acres of recreational farms throughout the mid-west. He holds a Bachelor degree in Biology and has been a professional trophy whitetail guide for nearly 20 years. He currently specializes in finding and listing great recreational farms in western Illinois. Jeff Evans, ALC Whitetail Properties Real Estate, LLC. Pittsfield, IL jeff.evans@whitetailproperties.com Jeff has been in the real estate land sales business since 2005 and has been with the Whitetail Properties Real Estate organization since its inception in 2007. He works as a managing broker in the corporate headquarters in Pittsfield, IL. His main job duties with the organization involve teaching, training, and mentoring agents around the country.



rlI MEMBEr NEWS RLI MEMBER NEWS Don Bell, is a Broker with NAI/Beverly Hanks in Asheville, NC. Bell was awarded the 2017 Land REALTOR® of the Year Award from the RLI Carolinas Chapter. Don was selected, in part, for his continued love and contributions to his firm and market, the Chapter, and all who cross his path. His drive to amend some of the North Carolina State easement laws is unprecedented. He is diligently striving to complete the requirements for the prestigious ALC Designation. Alan Bridevaux, ALC, Doug Rushing Realty, Inc., McComb, MS. Alan was presented the RLI Mississippi Chapter’s 2017 Land REALTOR® of the Year Award by President Bo Burkes, ALC, and Mississippi Association of REALTORS® 2017 President David Griffith at the Association’s State Convention in Tupelo, MS. Ray Brownfield, ALC, is the Managing Broker of Land Pro LLC. in Oswego, IL. Brownfield was featured as an expert guest on the This Week in Agribusiness talk show on RFDTV. Ray was also invited to speak at the 2017 NAFB Agribusiness Luncheon in Chicago on July 18. Cathy Cole, ALC, in Brenham, TX, Owner/Broker of Heritage Texas Country Properties, on her brokerage being named by The Land Report as one of America’s Best Brokerages in 2017.

RLI Georgia Chapter leaders Daniel Crocker, ALC, Sam Bowers, ALC, and G. Kent Morris, ALC, all completed their Remote Pilot 101 Course and successfully passed the 60question FAA Knowledge Test for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems. All three are on the 2018 Board for the RLI Georgia Chapter with Bowers serving as President, Morris serving as President-Elect, and Crocker as Administrator. John Dean, ALC, is the President and Principal Broker of Landmart/Dean Land & Realty Co. in Leland, MS. Dean was recently presented, by the MSU College of Agriculture & Life Sciences, with the 2016 Alumni Achievement Award.



Kirk Goble, ALC, is the Owner of Bell 5 Land Company in Greeley, CO. Goble received the Part-Time Faculty of the Year Award from Aims Community College based in Greeley. Goble is a LANDU-approved instructor for RLI teaching the Land 101: Fundamentals of Land Brokerage and the Agricultural Land Brokerage & Marketing courses. David Milton, ALC, from Dadeville, AL, was awarded the RLI Alabama Chapter’s 2017 Land REALTOR® of the Year Award at their 2017 Annual Meeting in Montgomery, AL, in October.

Frank Roberts, ALC, is the Broker/Owner of RE/MAX Landmark in Terrell, TX. Roberts was recognized as the #1 RE/MAX Commercial REALTOR® in Texas for the fifth consecutive year, as well as, the #8 RE/MAX Commercial producer in the United States, and #22 in the world (RE/MAX Commercial is in 45 countries). John Stratman, Mason & Morse Ranch Company was awarded the RLI Colorado Chapter’s 2017 Land REALTOR® of the Year Award at their meeting in September. Justin Osborn, Chapter President and 2016 recipient, presented John with the traveling trophy. Chia Valdez-Schwartz of Saratoga Land Sales LLC in Saratoga, WY, was presented with the RLI Wyoming Chapter’s 2017 REALTOR® of the Year Award at their chapter meeting.

Jason Ziegler is a Land Specialist for Whitetail Properties in Frazee, MN. Ziegler was presented with the award for the most transactions in 2016 by Whitetail Properties. In the past two years, Ziegler has had land sales of $24 million and sold 9,000 acres, totaling 91 properties sold.

“Where else can I glean that much knowledge in three days from that caliber of sources? I leave the National land Conference every year a better land consultant, broker and farm manager. The quality and depth of the education keeps me coming back year after year.” – LUKE WORRELL, AlC, Broker, Worrell land Services




NLC18 Events

2018 Cowboy Auction

Grab your cowboy boots and join us as we kick off NLC18 at the Seize the Momentum Welcome Reception at The Valentine on Lower Broad, Nashville’s Honky Tonk Highway. Enjoy light hors d’oeuvres, drinks, and networking with fellow attendees. This event is included in the general NLC18 registration.

Get ready to pony up! and lasso-in some great items at this year’s Cowboy Auction! This will be your opportunity to take home a piece of the 2018 National Land Conference. This fun filled event is brimming with energy, drinks, and laughter. All proceeds from the auction will benefit RLI’s LANDU Education Program through a grant from the Land Education Foundation (LEF). Have an interesting item, trip, or special offer to donate? Complete the donation form online today!

RLI APEX Awards Ceremony

Let’s Make Deal$ LIVE!

RLI will be putting on its first-ever RLI APEX Awards Program! This production-based awards program is designed to recognize the excellence and performance of our RLI Members — the best in the business! Could you be recognized as one of the top land real estate agents in the country? Make sure to apply and attend this unique event to find out! All applicants will get a free ticket to attend the ceremony included in their application fee.

Close more deals for your clients! This live Haves & Wants session is the largest opportunity in the industry to market and find the hottest properties with the best in the business. Plus, use this session as an added benefit for your clients for choosing you as their agent since you are able to market their property to over 200 land agents with interested buyers across the country. All conference registrants are invited to attend. Keep an eye out for an email from RLI in early January announcing that we are accepting submissions.

Seize the Momentum Welcome Reception





NLC18 Featured Sessions Top Ten Land Agent Success Strategies Michael Bull, CCIM, Host of America’s Commercial Real Estate Show, Senior Instructor with CommercialAgentSuccess.com, and Founder of Bull Realty will present, “Top 10 Land Agent Success Strategies.” Michael has closed $5 billion in sales and has trained select agents for 20 years. Michael will share proven strategies to win more business, close more transactions, and grow a consistently successful practice. The strategies will help power your business whether working with buyers or sellers, and will ensure your business is on the right track.

A Fresh Look At The Economy & The Land Market Dr. Mark Dotzour, industry renowned economist known to provide powerful messages on inflation and interest rates that could impact real estate values, will be a keynote speaker at NLC18. Mark will provide information and insights that can help attendees to understand everything from how global capital flows impact U.S. land and property values, to factors that drive inflation, and the cost of borrowing for real estate investors.

Ready. Aim. Fire! Strategic Business Planning How do you define success for your land business? Now, more importantly, how do you achieve it? Kasey Mock’s unique session will help attendees to lay out their plan for achieving strategic business goals, identify where to focus, and harness the power of clarity and accountability. Get ready to set your sights on success and make it a sure shot when you pull the trigger on your strategic business plan. This session is designed for midlevel land professionals.

Transitional Land: Entitlements, Zoning, & Permitting – David Farmer Good news, you just signed a contract to list piece of land that is perfect for transitioning for another use. Bad news, you don’t know how to advise your client. David Farmer’s session is mandatory for those just entering the transitional land environment. After this session, you’ll have a basic understanding of future land use and zoning controls. It will provide a review of federal, state, and local permitting policies. Plus, you’ll learn what your limitations are when subdividing land. This session is geared towards the entry level land professional or those new to transitional land transactions.











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FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT COMMERCIAL.CENTURY21.COM OR CALL 844.494.1167 © 2017 Century 21 Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. CENTURY 21 Farm & Ranch® and the CENTURY 21 Farm & Ranch Logo are registered service marks owned by Century 21 Real Estate LLC. Century 21 Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each Office is Independently owned and operated.

LANDU Education Update E D U C AT I o N U P D AT E

LANDU EDUCATION GETS REVAMP Big changes are coming to the lANDU Education Program in 2018! Education is what propels our members to truly be the best in the field and sets rlI above the rest in the industry as “The Voice of land.” last winter, rlI leadership created a strategic plan and vision for the future of rlI and one of the most important goals was to revamp the lANDU Education Program. A critical path was created to make these improvements. The main steps include: • Conducting a deep-dive review of all lANDU courses with the help of a member task force in 2017. This was completed to have a better understanding of the current state of our courses. • Hiring an expert education instructional designer to work closely with instructors/subject matter experts to update and provide consistency to our program materials. • reviewing instructor policies and creating an onboarding process to hire new instructors. The updated courses will begin being taught in 2018, with the goal of rolling out six updated courses at lANDU Week in June 2018. This project is crucial to the future success of rlI’s lANDU Education Program. Thank you to the Executive Team and the Board of Directors for your leadership on this important initiative and thank you to the Education Committee and Deep Dive Task Force for the blood, sweat, and tears in overseeing this ongoing project. We also want to give an especially huge thank you to our instructors and subject matter experts for their time and expertise during this process.

2018 HOT TOPIC WEBINARS Stay ahead of the curve and enhance your knowledge by attending a webinar presented by the REALTORS® Land Institute in 2018. The Education Committee will be presenting several complimentary webinars exclusively for RLI Members this year.



Diamond in the Rough: Transitioning Your Land for Development January 17th | Noon CT Complimentary Presenters: Bob Turner, ALC; Norma Nisbet, ALC; Ben Crosby, ALC Transitional land opportunities exist everywhere, from large metropolitan areas to small regional cities. Learn to recognize the highest and best use for the transition of the land, which may be developed for a variety of uses. Discover different techniques for identifying the

highest and best use of the property, estimating its market value, and identifying the target audience.

Top Land Real Estate Tech February 14th | Noon CT Complimentary Presenters: NLC18 Land Tech Accelerator Program Winners To stay the best in the business you need the best tools and services in the business. This webinar will feature the top selected start-up companies, as determined by the RLI Future Leaders Committee. Listen in to learn how their company can help make you more productive. Hear their pitch live and visit their booths at the National Land Conference in Nashville from March 12-14.

Land Estate Planning for Your Future April 11 | Noon CT Pricing available online Presenter: Joseph Michaletz, Discipline Advisors This webinar will provide background on what you can do to prepare yourself for the estate planning process. Specifically, this webinar will cover steps that you can take before meeting with an attorney, saving you time and money. Topics will include setting goals, listing assets and liabilities, estate planning tips, and a discussion of the basics about some of the commonly used estate tools such as wills, trusts, living wills, and retirement accounts. The intended audience for this webinar is land professionals and other citizens interested in learning more about the estate planning process.

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Gaining Community Support for Land Use Projects May 16 | Noon CT Pricing available online Presenter: Frank Rizzo, Five Corners Strategies Community resistance and opposition have made land use projects a challenge for most real estate professionals these days. To effectively campaign for a project you must understand your community and its citizens. This webinar will provide expert guidance on creating outreach plans, managing angry audiences, and generating positive attitudes in your community towards your project.

THE 2018 LANDU EDUCATION WEEK The 2018 LANDU Week will be held in Arlington, TX, from June 3-11. The RLI Texas Chapter and the Arlington Board of REALTORSÂŽ are excited to welcome LANDU participants to the Lone Star State for a week of professional development. RLI will be debuting its updated courses at this event! They will be offering 104 hours of education required for the ALC Designation, including the three required courses and three elective courses. This is a once-a-year opportunity to complete the education requirements and meet land professionals from around the country. We look forward to seeing you in Arlington this June!

Negotiating Oil and Gas Leases June 13 | Noon CT Pricing available online Presenter: Ezra Johnson, Esq. Uhl, Fitzsimmons, Jewett, Burton, PLLC

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Negotiating Oil and Gas Leases and Surface Use Agreements will focus on the important surface and mineral provisions most often overlooked by landowners in the negotiation process. The webinar will also include a discussion of recent legal developments impacting surface and mineral rights in Texas and other oil-producing states.


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LANDU Education Week Arlington, Texas | June 3-11 Complete all six courses towards the Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) Designation in one place! Registration opens April 2018.


RLI Lands Five Legislative Victories in 2017: I N S I D E T H E B E LT WAY

By Russell W. Riggs As the New Year begins, I wanted to use this edition of “Inside the Beltway” to share some successes that RLI had in 2017. Of, course these victories would not have been possible without the hard work and active engagement of RLI Members with their members of Congress through phone calls, emails, or in-district meetings. These activities make a difference and these five victories are a testament to their civic participation and perseverance.

Greater Awareness on the Value of 1031 As the battle for tax reform and the possible reform or elimination of 1031s heated up in 2017, RLI members became the trusted source of information for Members of Congress and their staff for data on how 1031s add value to the economy. Turnover in Congress among Members and staff is constant and RLI



members did an outstanding job communicating with Congressional offices about how 1031s add value to real estate in their district. While 1031s for real estate are safe as I write this column in November, 2017, it is critical that RLI members continue to reach out to Members of Congress and staff to make sure their voices are heard and 1031s are preserved.

The WOTUS Rule is Rolled Back The Clean Water Rule (AKA Waters of the US or WOTUS) was finalized in 2015. Although the WOTUS rule was never implemented due to a judicial stay, the damage of this rule would have been farreaching. This overreaching rule would have hindered economic development in rural and urban areas, tied up farmers, ranchers, and others who work the land in rolls and rolls of red tape and bureaucracy, and would have harmed property rights across the country. RLI and a broad coalition of regulated

stakeholders were instrumental in raising alarms about the damage this rule could do to the country’s economy. As a result, one of the first Executive Orders President Trump signed began the process for withdrawing this rule and developing a common-sense and workable definition of “Waters of the U.S.”, one that will provide the clarity needed to encourage economic development and protect our critical water resources.

Drones Take to the Sky The first call I ever received about using drones for real estate was in 2010 from Florida RLI Member Dean Saunders, ALC, who asked me the seemingly innocent question: “Can I use a drone to take pictures of some land I am selling?” At that time, after doing a little digging on the FAA website, I determined the answer was, unfortunately for Dean, “No.” The drone landscape has changed dramatically since then. Because of consumer desire and market need for

innovative technology, RLI Members pushed the FAA to allow the use of drones for commercial purposes. FAA regulations, which were finalized in late 2016, were then implemented and enforced in 2017, unleashing a torrent of market creativity. Now, drones are a regular part of the American “airscape” partly because of RLI Members insistence that this technology can be used safely and can be an important part of selling land, thereby adding value to the real estate economy.

Reforms of the ESA Continue There was good news on Sage Grouse as well as broader reform of the Endangered Species Act (ESA). While the Obama Administration decided to not list the Sage Grouse as endangered, they did withdraw 10 million acres of public land from being used for any economic activity such as mining or timbering, claiming this land was critical habitat for the Sage Grouse. In July, President

Trump reversed this withdrawal through Executive Order. On the broader issue of ESA reform, Congress has — for the first time in several years — moved forward with several bills that would enhance transparency, accountability of the ESA and improve the cost/benefit analysis during the listing process. More “rifle shot” legislative reforms are on the way.

The Deregulatory Steamroller Continues According to the Chamber of Commerce, President Trump has issued 29 executive actions to reduce regulatory requirements. In response, executivebranch agencies have issued 100 additional directives that either knock down regulations or begin a process to eliminate or shrink them. The chamber’s count also lists almost 50 pieces of legislation that have been introduced or begun moving through Congress. And that count doesn’t include perhaps the most aggressive

step the Republican Congress has taken: It has pioneered the use of a little-known 1996 law, the Congressional Review Act, which allows lawmakers to repeal executive-branch regulations within 60 days after they are finalized. Using that law, Congress has passed, and Mr. Trump has signed, legislation overturning 14 regulations promulgated by President Obama’s administration in its final days. While unwinding regulations takes time, these are very consequential actions with huge benefits for the private sector and private development, and I expect these actions to continue. About the author: In his position with the National Association of REALTORS®, Russell Riggs serves as the RLI’s Government Affairs Liaison in Washington, D.C., conducting advocacy on a variety of federal issues related to land.



The Land Market: Current Conditions & Outlook By Lawrence Yun, PhD



Since more construction is clearly needed, the broad demand for land should remain solid for at least the next two years.

The latest economic activity shows clear signs of improvement ahead. Consequently, the demand for land, especially for construction of commercial and residential properties, will be solid and rising throughout 2018 and into 2019. The demand for agricultural land is more difficult to predict. First, let’s take a look at the economic backdrop. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew at a three percent annualized rate in the third quarter. That is quite remarkable in light of the temporary standstill in activity in hurricane-impacted regions. The big contributors were the solid rise in business spending on equipment, which burst higher by 8.6 percent, and improvements in net exports (exports rose 2.3 percent and imports fell 0.8 percent). Software spending rose spectacularly by 24 percent. Such demand is undoubtedly being driven by the new world of digital information. Land in the middle of nowhere could soon be sought after as more data centers need to be built. Information from every Uber ride and Amazon sale are being stored digitally. Every piece of information from GPS units and the future self-driving mapping of automobiles will also need to be stored. Consumer spending is the biggest share of the nation’s economy and grew in the latest quarter at a decent pace of 2.4 percent. This is a tad short of the near three percent growth in consumer purchases in the past three years but still implies enough power to avoid any recession. Third quarter GDP growth was also partly boosted by inventory accumulation of goods. Sometimes this is a good thing, as companies are ramping up production in anticipation of stronger demand ahead. However, it also hints at a potential economic slowdown if the large inventory buildup requires cutting back on future production. Government spending has been neutral, neither adding nor subtracting to GDP growth. Federal government spending rose one percent while state and local government spending fell one percent during the latest quarter. The missing piston to the engine of economic growth is currently real estate construction. Private commercial building construction spending fell by 5.2 percent and residential real estate spending from new home construction and home sales activity declined by six percent. Commercial building vacancy

rates have been steadily falling across all property types over the past several years, and that will continue to be the case as new construction is just not coming around. As to the residential market, it is undergoing some of the tightest inventory conditions ever seen, with the quickening pace of homes selling right after coming onto the market and with multiple bids not uncommon in the lower price brackets. Home prices have been moving consistently above workers’ wage growth for the past five years. However, unlike the housing bubble days of 2005 with easy subprime credit, today’s market conditions reflect tight mortgage availability. The market has the feel of a “bubble” because of insufficient housing inventory. For the past decade, the construction of new single-family homes has been far below the 50-year historical average. Soft construction activity assures continuing tight inventory conditions, and there is certainly no oversupply in either the commercial or residential real estate industry. I am forecasting that housing starts will rise from 1.18 million housing starts in 2017 to 1.30 million in 2018. This growth will still be insufficient to fully satisfy rising housing demand. The long-term historical average has been for 1.5 million new homes constructed each year in the U.S. The low inventory conditions of near four months’ supply implies continuing rising in home values in most parts of the country. Homebuilders have indicated that, on average, it takes only 2.9 months to find a buyer of their spec-homes. It is a fast moving market, considering that just five years ago it took over an average of eight months. Homebuilders need to ramp up construction. However, they have been hampered by skilled worker shortages in the industry and from the difficulty of obtaining construction loans by smaller builders. As to the latter, there could be more loans coming down the pike, as some of the financial regulations that arose from the Dodd-Frank legislation are likely to be loosened somewhat for small-sized community banks. In regards to construction workers, it is going to take some time to recruit to fully meet the requirements. Trade schools are just not seeing enough interested people entering the industry, especially among the younger cohorts. Moreover, the hurricanes that devastated the Houston region and Florida will require a large number of construction workers just to replace the damaged



Protection of intellectual property rights must be assured, and fairness in trade needs to be constantly examined.

fairness in trade needs to be constantly examined. However, a unilateral increase in U.S. tariffs will certainly invite retaliation. Such actions, depending upon the magnitude of the tariffs, could easily wreak havoc on global supply-chain production and send the economies of the world on a downward path. Agricultural exports would be particularly hard hit, thereby hurting agricultural land prices. This development, therefore, requires alert watchfulness.

and demolished homes. An estimated 50,000 homes were damaged in Houston alone and around 70,000 in Florida. This work is not adding to the housing stock, but an attempt to maintain current levels. That means that demand for land development in other parts of the country will see delays because of the acute worker shortage. Last year’s Land Markets Survey conducted by the REALTORS® Land Institute and the NAR Research Department indicated that half of the members were involved in recreational and residential land transactions, and the average increase in value of those sales was two percent. Given that home prices have risen five percent in 2016 and another five percent in 2017, the prospect for land price increases should have seen an increase of that magnitude. For those involved in timberland sales, the rising lumber prices (partly attributed to global economic expansion and from wildfires in the Western U.S. states and in Canada) will permit a higher price sale in the upcoming year. Those specializing in agricultural land will face tougher conditions. The crop prices that farmers 34


have been receiving over the past three years have been in a rut with prices now more than 20 percent lower compared to the boom times in 2012. Therefore, the yield from agricultural land will be lower.

Risks to the Economy There is very little risk of an impending economic recession. Job openings are at a multi-year high and the number of people filing for unemployment insurance claims remains at historic lows. Such conditions imply that job growth of around two million is nearly assured in 2018. However, one area of concern relates to international trade war. Experience shows that job cutting occurs when both imports and exports decline measurably, as happened during the recent Great Recession and at the turn of the century. Also of course, many economists blame the 1930s Great Depression for tariff hikes across most countries around the globe at that time. President Donald Trump’s rhetoric on trade has been “tough,” including the idea of ending NAFTA and a trade war with China. Protection of intellectual property rights must be assured, and

A second risk is related to the tax reform without proper safeguards for real estate. If the mortgage interest deduction is no longer attractive and/or property tax deductions are no longer permitted, then the demand in home purchases and residential developable land will decline measurably. Changes to, or even a removal of, the all-important 1031 likekind exchanges could also greatly hurt land values. However, assuming there are no shocks to the system from international trade and that tax reform is pursued properly without hurting real estate, then investments in land will be on the rise making now a good time to be in the land sales business. About the author: Dr. Lawrence Yun is chief economist and senior vice president of Research at the National Association of REALTORS®. He directs research activity for the association and regularly provides commentary on real estate market trends for its 1.1 million REALTOR® members.


Who are ALCs?

The REALTORS® Land Institute confers its most prestigious, experienced, and highest performing members the Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) Designation. Earning the ALC requires successful completion of advanced coursework through the rigorous LANDU education program, a proven track record of transaction performance, adherence to high ethical standards, and a commitment to continued professional growth.

Why Earn the ALC?

Having the ALC designation gives brokers the expertise, FRQQHFWLRQV DQG YDOXDEOH UHVRXUFHV QHHGHG WR FRQÀGHQWO\ FORVH GHDOV RQ EHKDOI RI WKHLU FOLHQWV ,W DOVR JLYHV FOLHQWV FRQÀGHQFH LQ WKHLU EURNHU DV WKH PRVW TXDOLÀHG UHDO HVWDWH H[SHUW WR KHOS WKHP EX\ RU VHOO WKHLU ODQG When a land professional becomes an Accredited Land Consultant, that individual gains access to a unique group of real estate specialists who work together to build and share knowledge, develop trusted relationships, and expand business opportunities.




Be known as the local expert in land transactions. ALCs understand the value of being an expert on all matters pertaining to land real estate through continued professional development. Land transactions, in particular, require specialized knowledge DQG IDPLOLDULW\ ZLWK WKH LQGXVWU\ WR HQVXUH HDFK FOLHQW·V EHVW interests are met. www.rliland.com/accredited-land-consultant-designation

The Intersection of Environmental Factors and the Valuation of Rural Properties The value of rural properties can be affected by an interplay of forces, which are continually changing, often in a cyclical pattern. These forces include social trends (population); economic circumstances (supplyside economic indicators); and environmental forces (potential contaminants). There is a growing need for potential consideration of hazardous substances and their impact on property value. The consideration of environmental conditions is fundamental to the appraisal of rural real property.

Environmental Factors

By James L. Murrett, MAI, SRA

Some situations where contaminants and hazardous substances may be involved in the appraisal of rural properties include soil contamination due to an abandoned industrial plant, groundwater contamination due to a leaking underground storage tank and pesticide runoff from farmland to rivers and streams. According to The Appraisal of Real Estate, 14th Edition, potential contaminants and hazardous substances may include asbestos, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB), dioxin, trichloroethylene (TCE), radon, petroleum hydrocarbons, and lead. Environmental liabilities associated with industrial plants are well known, but many other liabilities may be present in rural properties. Farmers once commonly used long trenches filled with DDT-treated fuel oil, called “cattle vats,� to rid cattle of mites and other insects. Once this practice fell out of use, the trenches were simply filled in. Farms often have aging underground storage tanks that held gasoline for farm machinery, and farmland also may be contaminated from an accumulation of fertilizers and pesticides.



In most cases, all environmental forces that effect land value must be considered. These issues can be specific to a property or considered external to a property. Appraisers should determine the type of detrimental factors present on the property. These include potential hazardous wastes.

Specialized Methods And Techniques Over the past 25 years, the valuation profession has developed a set of recognized and generally accepted specialization techniques for estimating the effect of possible contamination and environmental risks on prices, markets, and values. These specialized methods are based on the three traditional approaches to value which include the sales comparison approach; the income capitalization approach; and the cost approach. These methods involve one or more of the following: Paired Data Analysis Of Impacted and Potentially Impacted Areas In paired data analysis, prices paid for properties that sold in an impacted area are compared to prices paid for otherwise similar properties that sold outside the impacted area to estimate the effect of the location on the sale price. More than one pairing is typically necessary to understand the effect of the location in the impacted area on the prices paid. Analysis Of Environmental Case Studies Environmental case studies are typically useful when a source site is being appraised or in a situation involving an impacted neighborhood or area where there are insufficient sales to understand the effect of the environmental issue on prices and values.

Multiple Regression Analysis Of Property Sales In Potentially Impacted Area When property is specified and developed, a multiple regression model can be used to determine if the environmental issue is affecting the sales prices. The model can be designed to interpret the effect of issues such as remediation status, location in a contaminated area, distance from the site source, and other factors. The Role Of The Appraiser Engaging the most competent appraiser is key in achieving a reliable, credible opinion of value for rural properties. Effort should be made to find a valuation professional with experience in rural valuations, particularly if there is a possibility of contamination. Appraisers are not required or expected to have the knowledge or experience required to detect the presence of hazardous substances or to measure the quantities of such substances. Like buyers and sellers on the open market, appraisers typically rely on the advice of others in matters that require special expertise. Appraisers must be, at a minimum, licensed or certified for Federally-Related Transactions. If the client is a federallyregulated institution and the intended use of the appraisal report qualifies as a FRT, the appraiser will have to conform to the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice and the Federal Institutions Reform and Recovery Enforcement Act. For complex assignments, it may be prudent to engage a more experienced or credentialed appraiser. At the Appraisal Institute, for example, Designated Members have demonstrated a higher level of education and experience and received designations that include MAI and SRA. WINTER 2018


Reaching a credible and reliable opinion of value when dealing with potential contamination of rural properties can be a complicated procedure.

Key Steps There are five key steps in an appraisal assignment involving possible contamination. Step 1: Determine the location of the possible contamination. In determining the source of the potential contamination, appraisers identify whether it is from: • A source site: A site on which the contamination is, or has been generated; • A non-source site: A site onto which the contamination, generated from the source site, has migrated; • An adjacent site: A site that is not contaminated but shares a common property line with a source site; or • A proximate site: A site not contaminated and not adjacent to the source site, but that is near the source site. The distinction is especially important in determining who is responsible for investigation and remediation costs, and whether that responsibility accompanies ownership of the property being appraised. Step 2: Determine the type of contaminant and the regulatory requirements. The appraiser considers the type of contaminant and applicable regulatory requirements (permitted or accidental discharge, level of required cleanup); migration (soil contamination confined to the source site, groundwater contamination spreading off site); and remediation (soil removal, installation of a cap, groundwater pumping, vapor removal) characteristics. 38


Step 3: Determine the status of the property in the remediation lifecycle. A remediation lifecycle consists of three stages of clean up: before remediation or cleanup; during remediation; and after remediation. The appraiser determines the status of the property in the remediation lifecycle. A contaminated property’s remediation lifecycle stage is an important determinant of the risk associated with environmental contamination. The effect of contamination and environmental risk on property prices and values changes over time, typically decreasing as a site works its way through discovery and investigation, remediation and post-remediation stages. Step 4: Consider cost, use and risk effects as of relevant date and point in the remediation cycle. Appraisers consider the cost, use and risk effects as of the relevant date and point in the remediation cycle as they relate to the type of property (source, non-source, adjacent or proximate). Step 5: Estimate the “as is” value. Finally, appraisers estimate the impaired, or “as is,” value. In most assignments, appraisers also are asked to compare the impaired value to the unimpaired value under hypothetical condition that the contaminant was not present.

Standards of Professional Practice

Guide Note 15: Assumptions and Hypothetical Conditions

Reaching a credible and reliable opinion of value when dealing with potential contamination of rural properties can be a complicated procedure. Among the tools available to valuation professionals are two Appraisal Institute guide notes that may be particularly useful in the valuation of potentially contaminated properties including Guide Note 6: Consideration of Hazardous Substances in the Appraisal Process and Guide Note 15: Assumptions and Hypothetical Conditions.

In an example of a hypothetical condition, the subject property is the former site of heavy industrial use and the appraiser is aware that it might be contaminated, but this isn’t known for certain. The value opinion reflects the property as though the subject site is not contaminated on the date of value, which is the current date. This value is premised on the special/ extraordinary assumption that the site is not contaminated.

Guide Note 6: Consideration of Hazardous Substances in the Appraisal Process The purpose of Guide Note 6 is to provide guidance in the application of USPAP in the appraisal assignment. It is not to provide technical instructions or explanations concerning the detection or measurement of the effect of hazardous substances. An extraordinary assumption presumes as fact otherwise uncertain information about physical, legal, or economic characteristics of the subject property, or about conditions external to the property, such as market conditions or trends, or about the integrity of data used in an analysis. An example of an extraordinary assumption could be suspected but not confirmed that there may be underground storage tank contamination. An environmental assessment by a qualified environmental professional would be required for such conclusions or determinations.

The appraisal report would need to include a clear disclosure of this special/extraordinary assumption, and state that its use might have affected the opinions and conclusions.

Conclusion Rural properties can be impacted by environmental contamination resulting in the release of hazardous substances into the air, surface water, ground water, or soil. These factors may complicate real estate financing decisions. The ability for appraisers to accurately identify environmental issues, and factor them into property valuation can, benefit consumers buying and selling land, lenders, and the valuation profession. About the author: James L. Murrett, MAI, SRA, is the 2018 president of the Appraisal Institute, the nation’s largest professional association of real estate appraisers. Based in Chicago, the Appraisal Institute has nearly 19,000 professionals in almost 60 countries. Murrett will be hosting a break out session diving further into this topic at the 2018 National Land Conference in Nashville, TN, in March.



Top agents who take time to strategically plan have a more predictable business and, consequently, they operate with more clarity.

Ready. Aim. Fire. Strategic Planning for Your Land Real Estate Business By Kasey Mock, RLI Member

Last January, I hosted a group of clients for a duck hunt on the Texas coast. Huge groups of redheads flock together during the late season, and when they commit to the decoys, the hunter who takes careful aim can fill his bag with drakes in a hurry! One of my companions, however, was not having a productive hunt. Opportunities were abundant, and he was shooting aggressively, but his shots rarely connected. When he did hit a duck, he was just as surprised as we were! But, more often we heard the words, “%$#@, I should have aimed better!” He failed to follow the proven “ready, aim, fire” model. Unfortunately, this sounds too much like how many real estate agents approach the land business. Abundant opportunities, lucrative commissions, and time spent outdoors tend to attract these folks to the land business. But many operate their businesses in a reactive fashion, simply taking what the market gives them. While they may feel busy, their business is unpredictable and it leads to the high percentage of agents who fail to make it past five years in this business. Strategic planning for your land sales business boils down to a few simple steps: set clear, written goals (ready), identify the specific activities to get you there (aim), then execute the plan (fire). Top agents who do take time to strategically plan have a more predictable business and, consequently, they operate with more clarity. Core business and operational decisions become much easier with a predictable business. Hiring, debt, expansion, marketing, and scheduling are much easier if you can confidently predict the results you will likely achieve. As you plan your business empire, you should start by considering where your leads will come from. Use a simple spreadsheet or one of the many software programs available online to track your lead sources by percentage and volume. By identifying your core sources of business, you can confidently plan your activities, make better marketing decisions and bring in the proper leverage to maximize the potential of these lead sources. Additionally, this will force you to calculate the cost of these leads, which will come in handy when doing your pro forma. Knowing the sources of your business is the first step to clear planning. Now, let’s look at three basic components of a productive and clear business plan. Remember, this is a plan for you to follow, not a 50-page textbook that requires a Ph.D. to interpret! The WINTER 2018


idea of a business plan is to clearly lay out the specific steps and activities required to reach your goals, and to project profitability once you reach them. The three basic components we will look at are: the Financial Model, or pro forma, the Organizational Model (who does what), and a one-page plan with written goals and the clear steps to accomplish them. Top businesspeople know their numbers and track them closely. The Financial Model or pro forma is where you write down how much income you would like to net, and calculate all the costs associated with getting to that number. According to the Millionaire Real Estate Agent model, start with your desired net income, then back into the total sales required to support this goal. For example, if I want to net $300,000 in annual income (before taxes), I would write down $300,000 + $87,600 (29.2% cost of sales) + $87,600 (29.2% operating expenses) to get my total required gross commission income (GCI) = $475,200. Now I know how much revenue I will need to bring in to support my income goal and I can calculate how I



will get there. To do this, divide $475,200 (GCI) by your average commission rate to get the necessary total sales volume. In this example, I would need to close $15,840,000 in sales volume to reach my goal. Next, I will need to know my average sales price to calculate the number of transactions needed to reach my goal. My average sale has been tracking around $2,000,000. $15,840,000 divided by $2,000,000 tells me I need to close 7.9, or 8 transactions at my average commission rate to reach my goal. Now, I simply plug in the percentage of listings I expect to close (65%) from the appointments I expect to win (70%) to get the number of listing appointments I will need to set. In this example, I would need to go on 18 listing appointments in order to predictably win 12 so that I could expect to close 8 property transactions. If they average $2,000,000 and I earn my average commission rate that will determine my GCI. After expenses and cost of sales, I will reach my income goal of $300,000. See chart on page 4 of the Millionaire Real Estate Agent Business Plan.

The success of any sales business boils down to the right amount of quality leads. The Financial Model showed me how many leads I need to generate to reach my financial goal; now I can build a plan to get there. We have found a simple, single-page business plan to be the most effective way to do this. The COB and CEO of the largest real estate company in the world can fit theirs on a single page, so we can too! The single-page business plan requires extreme clarity on the goal and the specific things that must happen in order to accomplish the goal. In his book The ONE Thing, Gary Keller asks the question, “What’s the ONE Thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?” This clarity allows you to line up your dominoes and start with the most important task first. Focus on the big rocks, the things that only you can do, and break them down into action items. We start with a written five-year goal, a written one-year goal, three top priorities that absolutely must happen to ensure the one-year goal is met, and five strategies to accomplish each priority. We creatively refer to this exercise as the 1-3-5 goals sheet. Going back to my example from the Financial Model, I would write my one year goal of $300,000 net income and roughly $16,000,000 in sales volume. My fiveyear goal is a stretch goal, but for the purposes of this exercise it won’t matter unless I hit my one-year goal. Next, I need clarity on what the three things are that must happen to support my goal. These are my top three priorities, and I write them down as well. First, I know I

Leverage is freedom for business owners. It allows you to scale by staying in your strength zone and working on the business, rather than in the business.

will need $24,600,000 in listing inventory (12 listing agreements at a $2,000,000 average) to predictably close $16,000,000 (65%). Then I break down my five strategies to get there. Secondly, I know I will have to nail lead generation, and third, I will need a solid marketing plan. Each of these gets the same five detailed strategies. If I have clarity on these big rocks, I can dig into each of them and hold the activity (and the person attached to it) accountable for producing the results. Now that I have completed my Financial Model and I have clarity on the core things that must happen to support it, my final step is the Organizational Model. This is where I bring in leverage and assign who does what in the business. I cannot do everything, and in fact I shouldn’t. There are things I do poorly, like administrative work and bookkeeping. There are others who do those very well, and by delegating to them, I am released to do the things I do well – like lead generation and interacting with clients. Leverage is freedom for business owners. It allows you to scale by staying in your strength zone and working on the business, rather than in the business. Leverage could be defined as strategically removing yourself from every aspect of your business based on your skill set and the value of your time. For most real estate agents and business owners, the logical first hire is an executive assistant, followed by a buyer agent and maybe a second assistant. Draw a simple org chart with clarity on who does what and who they report to. As your business grows, you add future

hires under them and build a job description or “missing person’s report” for these future hires. Hiring for the future with a big goal in mind changes the way you hire and lead people. Success through people is one of the hardest things for most entrepreneurs to master, but for most, it is the single largest factor in their ceiling of achievement. If you own or operate multiple businesses like I do, then simply do these steps for each business and combine the results. With multiple businesses, you would also consider shared resources, shared employees, and weigh any direct ancillary benefits of one business to another. For example, a farm management company and a land sales company might complement each other quite well by maximizing the client opportunity and sharing administrative expenses.

About the author: Kasey Mock is the Director of Farm, Ranch, and Land at Keller Williams Realty International. Mock is a member of the REALTORS® Land Institute now serving his second year on their Future Leaders Committee. Make sure to check out his break out session diving further into this topic at the 2018 National Land Conference in Nashville, TN, in March.

Lastly, you will likely not nail this on the first or even the hundredth try! So inspect what you expect, monitor your progress regularly with good accountability, and make adjustments as you go. What you focus on expands. Have a predictable written plan and focus on the detailed activities that will produce the results you desire. Go get ‘em!



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Yes, You Should Invest in Land Real Estate By Jessa Friedrich, MBA

“I have always liked real estate; farmland, pastureland, timberland and city property. I have had experience with all of them. I guess I just naturally like ‘the good Earth,’ the foundation of all our wealth.” — JESSE JONES, ENTREPRENEUR Real estate investors and buyers alike have always had an affinity for land. There is just something about land that draws in savvy investors. Whether it’s the innate, territorial tendencies we have deep within or the simple magnetism of connecting with nature in a world increasingly becoming cluttered with high rises and highways, our instincts are doing what they do best, pointing us in the right direction! Whether its amber waves of grain or purple mountain majesties, land continues to prove to be one of the most profitable longterm investments from sea to shining sea. The USDA’s 2017 Land Values Summary released in August shows that from 2010-2016 average farm real estate values have cumulatively increased 43 percent or an average of 6.1 percent annually and 46


average cropland real estate values have cumulatively increased 51 percent or an average of 7.3 percent annually— that’s quite a return on investment! It’s no wonder smart investors are flocking to invest in the land real estate market. In fact, the 2017 REALTORS® Land Institute Land Markets Survey shows that out of all buyers in land transactions, there was a five percent increase in those who were investors in just one year from 2015 to 2016. With so many different types of land to choose from when investing and so many different ways to invest in land, the possibilities are almost endless. If you aren’t sure where to start, just keep reading. Hopefully by now I have your attention and you are no doubt wondering “why is land real estate such a hot investment?” There are a lot variables that can be mentioned here but the simple answer is best summed up by Mark Twain as “Buy land, they’re not making it anymore.” Compared to other investments, land can be purchased relatively cheap if you find a motivated seller. Being a limited resource and non-depreciable, it’s a fairly safe asset when looking for a solid return on a long-term investment.

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• Millions of Land Buyers and Sellers For those looking to invest in land real estate to diversify their portfolio, buy a property to retire on, or just get in on the action, there are a lot of great resources out there. Just keep in mind that when investing in land real estate, it is crucial to consult a professional with the experience and knowledge necessary to conduct these kinds of transactions. Land is a whole different animal than residential or commercial real estate and there are agents out there who dedicate themselves to being experts in this field. The REALTORS® Land Institute offers investors an easy to use search tool to find a qualified local agent called Find A Land Consultant, check it out and get started! About the author: Jessa Friedrich, MBA, is the Marketing Manager for the REALTORS® Land Institute. She has a Bachelor of Science with a dual major in Business Administration and Marketing as well as a Masters of Business Administration in Marketing with a specialization in Social Media. Jessa has been with RLI in the land real estate industry for over three years and manages all matters pertaining to marketing and communications for the organization.

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Having the ALC Designation is an honor for anyone and it can really set you apart from your competition. Receiving my ALC Designation took my career as a land broker to another level.

Earning The Elite ALC Designation As A Young Professional By Calvin Perryman, ALC

Starting out as a young agent in the land real estate business is usually an intimidating challenge. When I obtained my real estate license five years ago, I started researching ways to gain knowledge and experience in land sales. I quickly found that there are plenty of places to learn about the real estate business in general but very few opportunities to learn specifically about the land aspect of real estate. I found the REALTORS® Land Institute (RLI) and learned about their Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) Designation. I soon figured out that this was an organization I needed to be a part of and that the ALC was a designation I sought to obtain.



Here is why… Education: The knowledge I gathered from taking LANDU courses offered through RLI helped me greatly. The course content is second to none and the instructors offer “real life” situations where you can put this knowledge to work in the field. The lessons you learn and the people you meet can help you many times over and for many years down the road. Networking: Networking with other RLI members and ALCs has led to several opportunities in my real estate career. I have had numerous referrals and joint listings that I can directly tie back to the connections I made at either state RLI events or at the annual National Land Conference. I believe meeting another agent at one of these events and getting to know them better

I honestly believe the ALC Designation helped me land what could very well be a career long client. on a personal level makes it much easier to be able to put a deal together with them down the road.

several other properties for the family, and helped them with a couple of consulting and appraisal jobs.

Credibility: As a young professional, being an ALC sets you apart from the rest of the pack of real estate agents. It gives you credibility when talking with clients and prospective clients. For instance, where I work in Alabama there are over 26,000 real estate licensees and brokers and of those real estate licensees only 19 are ALCs. This gives a young agent who holds their ALC a real advantage over most of the real estate agents in our state. In 2015, I got the chance to interview with a prominent family for a listing on a ±380 acre timberland listing in Central Alabama. While in the interview, they asked what made me different from the rest of the agents that they had spoken with about the property. I explained to them that I had recently received my ALC Designation and that the work and education that it took to get there gave me the specialized expertise needed to conduct their transaction. A few days went by and they called me to tell me I had the listing. Since then, I have sold that tract, along with

I owe much of my success in my real estate career to the education, networking, and credibility I received through RLI while obtaining my ALC. I truly believe that ALCs are the “Best of the Best” in the land business and that the ALC Designation is something that everyone in the business should work towards. About the author: Calvin Perryman, ALC, is an Associate Broker and Appraiser with Great Southern Land. Calvin is an active member of RLI, serving on the 2017 Future Leaders Committee. He graduated from Auburn University with a Bachelor Degree in Agricultural Business and Economics in May of 2011. Shortly after graduating from Auburn he obtained his real estate license and has been in the real estate business since 2011. This piece was originally featured on the RLI Blog at rliland.com/blog.



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Top Land Real Estate Apps for 2018 By Jessa Friedrich, MBA

With the New Year already in play, we wanted to share with you some apps that can help you take your real estate business to the next level in 2018. Whether your resolution is to be more efficient, effective, or productive, we’ve compiled a list with the down-low on the top apps for land real estate professionals to download. How do we know these apps are so great? We’ve pulled them from the RLI Technology & Resource Center created by the 2017 RLI Future Leaders Committee for RLI Members as a member benefit.

Adobe Acrobat As a land agent, we know you’re always on the go which means so is your office. The Adobe Acrobat app is an all in one tool which allows you to easily and quickly access PDF documents no matter where they are downloaded from online. This intuitive tool makes reading documents on your phone or tablet easy with search, zoom, and scrolling functionality. Plus, you can review PDFs and add your own comments or markups which you can easily pass along to staff or clients. And the fun doesn’t stop there, this apps allows you to fill out forms on the go as well as e-sign any PDF doc. Finally, you have to check out its easy scan functionality which can turn a picture of anything into a shareable PDF.

CamCard Keeping track of paper files, and especially small ones like business cards, can be a hassle. This next app proves a great way to turn your paper business cards digital to make them more easy to keep track of and to use the information off. All you have to do is snap a pic of a business card and the app keeps track of the information in a database-like format. You can easily add notes, exchange e- cards, and access your contacts from anywhere!

EverNote There’s a good reason EverNote calls themselves “your second brain.” This app is great for agents trying to remember a lot of different things at once when they are being pulled a million different directions. It’s not just an app for taking notes but also offers a way to declutter and work smarter by creating notes

with checklists, tables, links, and even audio-snips all in a searchable central location. Plus it also has a helpful business version of the app for purchase that allows sharing and collaboration—great for working with your team or clients.

FarmLogs Okay so this app isn’t necessarily for your business — though you could use it that way, too! — but if you own farmland or have clients who do, it should definitely be on your radar. This app is designed to help you manage your property by giving insights into field conditions, soil maps, crop heat accumulation, yield threats, real-time futures prices, and more! You can even use it for everything from taking and sharing notes while out on a property to managing a budget.

Sumo Looking to grow your prospect list and capture leads from your website? Sumo helps agents to increase inbound traffic to their website and capture leads. From adding share buttons that make it easier for visitors to share your content to creating popups that capture emails of hot leads, this app is designed to be a powerful way to grow your business. For a full list of apps and more technology and service recommendations from the best land real estate agents in the business, check out RLI’s new Technology & Resource Center member benefit. Know of any apps we can add to this list? Fill out the form in the RLI Technology & Resource Center so we can add it to the collection. Until next time, here’s to a productive New Year! About the author: Jessa Friedrich, MBA, is the Marketing Manager for the REALTORS® Land Institute. She has a Bachelor of Science with a dual major in Business Administration and Marketing as well as a Masters of Business Administration in Marketing with a specialization in Social Media. Jessa has been with RLI in the land real estate industry for three years and manages all matters pertaining to marketing and communications for the organization.



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