Wednesday, July 19, 2006

A paperclip for a house on craigslist

Many of you may have followed the story about the Canadian guy who placed an ad to barter a red paper clip for something that would eventually lead to a house. That eventuality would take many trades of various objects, services and values...and ultimately come true.

Well, the guy was successful and he has traded up to a home in a small tourist town of Kipling, Saskatchewan. You can view a synopsis of the journey at various stories or read from Kyle MacDonald's blog (the Canadian guy who pulled this off).

I like this story for many reasons; blogging, real estate, craigslist, ideas, integrity and principles, drive and personality.

Let me explain. Kyle was able to find a creative way to get a home. The whole thing caught my eye due to the goal... a house. I've made the statement before how obsessive I am about real estate in general, so I really wanted this guy to get the house. As a writer, he has been a little short on cash but used his ability to blog with wit and smarts and recognize a community that may help him out. As a blogger myself (albeit, a relatively new one) I understand how committed this community is to communicating with each other.

Kyle blogged and posted on craigslist (click my link to craigslist in the side bar). Again, he understands the power of this online community of sellers, buyers, traders, and seekers of all things local. But interesting enough, his local craigslist post ended up globalizing his quest. People found him, he found people.

Blogs and craigslist have become real tools in real estate. I believe you can know someone through their blog and get a good feeling about how they conduct business. It is a terrific way for a real estate practioner to pass on up to date information, stay current by commenting on the market and to connect with current and future clients.

I also post all my listings on craigslist. This may be "below" some Realtors, but I find it necessary to reach the most real estate consumers. Some properties are just simply posted there and in no other place. I want mine right next to those because I know people are looking.

And that's just it. You have to be where people are looking.

Kyle also showed alot of personality and integrity. The media really caught on to the story and he had many chances to "trade" for lucrative sponsored opportunities. But he did not. Kyle's goal was always to make trades with people who actually needed, wanted, or could use the item he was trading. He said what he was going to do and stuck to it. And he had a great time doing it.

So, Kyle got a house to move in to... a place to write his first novel. But I really liked his story for the many layers and lessons about how things can be accomplished. This is not my best writing and I'm a bit cliche here, but I think his story is a good one for entrepreneurs. Basically, that's what I am as a real estate agent. You have to create a new business plan with each client, be committed to the goal, get creative, come up with ideas, solutions and options, be flexible, have a personality capable of dealing with various complications and change... and do what you said you would do while having fun doing it.

We get it Kyle. We get it.

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