RealtyHive Site Down Due to Email Spam Attack

Update: As of 10:28am CST, RealtyHive.com is working correctly and we have identified the source of this breach.

Today the RealtyHive team came in (to their home offices #socialdistancing) bright and early to a site no website developer, administrator, or owner wants to see — a malicious abuse of the features on our site.

While the details are still foggy and the facts are being sorted out, what we do know is that THOUSANDS of spam emails have been sent to various email addresses using one of our templates. That is to say, the emails look like they are coming from us.

These emails do not appear to have affected any of our clients or internal lists, but rather these emails are being sent to a variety of email addresses that we have never had contact with. Unfortunately, these emails also appear to contain an inappropriate, adult-themed content as well as possibly malicious links.

If you have received one of these emails, Please DO NOT click on any links in the email.

We are currently doing everything we can to stop this malicious attack and prevent any further disruptions. We also ask that if you have received one of these messages, please do not mark it as spam.

We understand that these emails are the definition of spam, but unfortunately, the attackers were very smart in sending these from a our account meaning any emails marked as “spam” count against us, not the actual bad actors.

We will update this post as we receive more information. Thank you for all patience and understanding as we work diligently to solve this problem.

More than 50,000 New Listings Now on RealtyHive

New listings added as real estate market heats up

More than 50,000 properties are now available on the RealtyHive website. The new properties range from a 55-dwelling portfolio of residential properties in the Madison, Wisconsin to large vacant land tracts in Georgia to single lots 

The new listings come as RealtyHive begins to roll out Cashifyd, the company’s soon-to-market app and web service. Cashifyd connects real estate buyers with real estate agents who offer cash back at closing.  The program is being rolled out in beta for Wisconsin and Georgia and will launch in more states later this year.

“This exciting addition of inventory is not only bringing more properties to the fingertips of our active buyers, but is also bringing the great opportunity for us to connect these buyers with local agents through Cashifyd, “ said Amanda Syrjamaki, head of web design and development at RealtyHive who led this onboarding process. “I am looking forward to seeing these connections grow as we expand into new markets in the months to come.” 

With properties in more than 30 countries, RealtyHive has been rapidly growing in 2020. In addition to announcing more than $2 billion in actively engaged on-site inventory, RealtyHive has expanded its corporate footprint with the opening of a new Georgia office in spring 2020. 


Visitors to the  RealtyHive website can now search can now search the more than 50,000 listings for residential, commercial, land, and international properties and see the potential cash back offers right from the listing page.

What Is Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae & Ginnie Mae?

Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, Ginnie Mae — are these people, candy stores, or sandwich orders? They’re actually all government mortgage corporations. In fact, they’re kind of like mortgage corporations for mortgage companies and banks. They make up the fabric of our day-to-day life, yet remain vague or completely unknown to most homeowners.

The 3 Mortgage Companies

Freddie MacFannie MaeGinnie Mae
Established in 1970Established in 1938Established in 1968
Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (FHLMC)Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA)Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA)
Government program that buys mortgages from small banksGovernment program that buys mortgages from commercial banksGovernment program that buys nonconventional loans

Freddie Mac

When you’re ready to buy a home, you take a mortgage out from the bank. Freddie Mac gives banks the opportunity to create 30-year mortgages. But those same banks would struggle if they had to directly manage every single 30-year loan, for 30 years.

For example, let’s pretend we live in a fictional town called Littlesville:

  • The number one job supplier in Littlesville is a factory.
  • One day, the factory closes.
  • Nearly everyone in the town is suddenly out of a job.
  • People are missing mortgage payments.
  • The local bank is about to tank.

With Freddie Mac, the bank wouldn’t sink in this scenario. The bank will sell their mortgages to Freddie Mac, and then those mortgages get mixed in with other mortgages from all over the country. It’s almost like a group project — when one person falls behind, the other group members pick up the slack.

As The Balance explains, “Freddie resells the [mortgage-backed securities\ to investors on the secondary market. That allows more investors to profit from the real estate sector. Freddie uses the proceeds to buy more bank mortgages. That starts the whole process all over again.”

Fannie Mae

Now that you know how things these types of government mortgage corporations work, it’s time to back it up to the original. Fannie Mae was established by the US government in 1938 as part of FDR’s New Deal, providing the same services that Freddie Mac does.

The only real difference is that Fannie Mae buys and resells mortgages from commercial banks. Most of the time, Freddie Mac buys back mortgages from smaller bank.

Ginnie Mae

Ginnie Mae does all the same things as Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. The biggest difference is that this is part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Ginnie Mae works almost exclusively with FHA loans, VA loans, USDA loans, and any other nonconventional, government-issued loans.

How Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and Ginnie Mae Affect You

These secondary lenders set rules that banks and primary lenders have to follow. They protect the banks and, as an extension, protect communities and people. It’s a good thing to know about the next time you’re looking to buy a house! Or at the very least, could provide you with a trivia answer should you ever make it to “Jeopardy!”.

hugh giliam joe hartley welcome

RealtyHive Welcomes Two New Additions to Team

Hugh Gilliam and Joe Hartely Join RealtyHive

We’re excited to announce Hugh Gilliam and Joe Hartley, both formerly of Atlanta Communities Real Estate Brokerage, have joined RealtyHive as Director of International Real Estate and Vice President of Georgia, respectively. Both men are industry veterans and will be heading the new Atlanta office for RealtyHive.

“Hugh brings an impressive portfolio of listings and clientele to RealtyHive. As technology brings the world closer together than ever before, we’re seeing an influx of interest in international properties and Hugh has the experience to take our offerings to the next level,” says Wade Micoley, Founder and CEO of RealtyHive.

Mr. Gilliam, an award-winning Realtor® based in Atlanta, Georgia is a Certified International Property Specialist, Certified International & Immigration Specialist, International Real Estate Specialist, and holder of a Transnational Referral Certification. Mr. Gilliam will be responsible for developing new business relationships with international real estate brokerages and furthering the inventory of luxury properties available on RealtyHive.

Hartley, a Georgia native, has more than 21 years of experience in real estate and is the co-founder, along with Gilliam, of the international luxury real estate e-magazine Doorways International. The magazine was created to satisfy the lifestyle requirements of discerning clientele and will be merging with RealtyHive to bring the utmost exposure to the high-end luxury properties featured in the publication in addition to expanding the international luxury properties available for sale on RealtyHive.

This partnership will allow for greater exposure of the properties currently showcased on Doorways International as well promoting luxury RealtyHive properties to the engaged audience of Doorways International monthly e-magazine.

Young woman walking in a field of tulips

Celebrate National Garden Month

Greenhouses, xeriscapes, courtyards, who knew there were so many different kinds of gardens? This April, celebrate National Garden Month by planting your garden! Whether you’re a homeowner looking for a way to spruce up your front lawn, or you just wanna enjoy the beauty that springtime has to offer, take a look at these 8 different types of gardens for National Garden Month:

Vegetable Garden

There’s nothing better than the taste of homegrown fresh vegetables, and you can grow your own vegetables by planting your own vegetable garden! If you don’t like cucumbers, no problem! There’s so many kinds of vegetables you can grow, tomatoes, carrots, zucchini, it’s up to you!

Backyard Garden

This one is self explanatory. Your backyard is the perfect place for a garden! Whether you want to plant flowers, fruits, vegetables, herbs, or create your own concoction, your backyard is the place to go.

Window Sill Garden

If you live in an area where the weather isn’t ideal for an outdoor garden, or if you don’t have a big yard, try growing a window sill garden! First, you need to find the window in your home that gets the most sunlight. Then, decide how you’re going to set up your garden. You can place a bunch of different planters on the window sill, or you can use a raised garden bed. The best part about window sill gardens, is that not only can you keep them year round, but you can grow whatever kind of garden you want – no matter the climate!

Pollinator Garden

A pollinator garden is a garden that is planted in order to attract pollinator animals like butterflies, bees, and even hummingbirds. Pollinator gardens aren’t just good for the environment, they are fundamental to the ecosystem. Plus, all the different colors and scents make some of the most beautiful gardens out there!

Herb Garden

Another type of garden you could plant is an herb garden. Herbs are good for cooking, flavoring, fragrances, dyes, they’re even beneficial to your health. Check out some of the different types of herbs you can plant here. 

Vertical Garden

A vertical garden is a technique that you use to grow plants on a vertical surface, like a wall or a fence. There are a number of reasons that gardeners use vertical gardens – one reason is to take advantage of all potential space in a garden. Another is to be able to have a garden in a place where there’s usually no room for one, like in a big city. No matter where you live, you can brighten up your home by making your own vertical garden. 

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Vertical garden | Madrid flashback

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Fairy Garden

It’s exactly what it sounds like. A fairy garden is a miniature garden that you keep in a container or a flower bed. It includes a bunch of tiny sculptures and structures along with actual living plants! Fairy gardens are super fun for both kids and adults to create, and you can keep them anywhere you want!

Xeriscape Garden

If you live in an area that doesn’t get a lot of rain, try xeriscaping! Xeriscaping is a landscaping process where you use plants that don’t require a lot of water, and they’re pretty popular in the western part of the US. Although people often think that xeriscapes just consist of desert plants (even though desert plants are pretty cool), most xeriscapes consist of a wide variety of colorful and vibrant plantlife. You just have to figure out how you want your garden to look!

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Soft morning light today ??

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Why we won’t back down

Seeing the opportunity in hard times

In times of uncertainty it can be easy to hunker down and hide. Seeing the trouble and panic of yesterday leads many to think that tomorrow will be filled with more of the same. It’s okay to be anxious with what we’re seeing, or not seeing,  in the market now. It’s uncertain and it’s human nature to react with hesitancy; if nothing feels the same as it was yesterday, it follows that we should not act as we did yesterday. But this pattern of panic and inaction is not conducive to growth or recovery. What is important now is to have a plan of action. 

RealtyHive began in another time of deep societal unease. Our Time-Limited Events were developed in response to the industry downturn during the Great Recession. We saw the plight of sellers and professionals who had properties they needed to sell, but no way to stand out and reach those who were still interested in buying. For these folks, giving up wasn’t an option and neither was holding on to the properties for longer. The industry was reeling, the market was in shambles, and it would have been easy to give up. We easily could’ve just said that no one was buying real estate and could’ve sat back and watched the industry fall into ever deeper trenches. Instead, we made a plan, executed that plan, and were able to help thousands of sellers and professionals create the property exposure needed to sell then, just as we intend to do now. 

At RealtyHive, we’re continuing to showcase properties to interested buyers in the safest and smartest ways possible. We understand that while many are worried about what the future may hold, now is the time to be prepared for whatever may come next.  We’re proud to be able to offer contactless digital marketing options to agents and sellers as well all work through this tough time together.   

The situation we’re faced with is different for everyone. Many people are facing economic hardships and that is not something to be taken lightly, however for those fortunate enough to have income security, this could be a great time to buy real estate. 

The historically low mortgage rates we’re seeing right now offer an incredible opportunity for buyers and the technology available means that buyers can see properties without ever having to leave their couch. From virtual tours and video walkthroughs to e-signing documents and online meetings, the tools we have mean that we can carry on with business in a way that is both safe and productive. 

Uncertainty is not limited to those buying properties. While RealtyHive always showcases the properties of motivated sellers, now more than ever we encourage you to take a look at the properties available through RealtyHive Time-Limited Events

Recently we’ve added a new tool to help buyers and sellers get the most value out of their real estate buying or selling experience. Cashifyd is a new program we’ve developed to connect consumers with agents who offer cashback at closing. This helps minimize the amount of money needed to close on a property, freeing that cash up for other uses. This program is completely free for buyers and sellers and allows you to connect with an agent and start your real estate process without having to leave your home. 

 As we weave through these unprecedented times together, it comes down to the way we respond to the challenges we face. We chose to confront these challenges and continue to build for the future and welcome you to reach out and let us know how we can assist in continuing your real estate goals.

RealtyHive Named as Tech100 Real Estate Winner

We’re excited to announce we’ve been named as a 2020 HousingWire Tech100 Real Estate winner. The award, organized by real estate industry magazine, HousingWire, honors innovative companies in the real estate industry.

“We are very pleased to be included in this prestigious group of Real Estate innovators,” said RealtyHive founder and CEO, Wade Micoley. “Our team has worked hard and we’ve seen incredible growth with more than $2 billion worth of properties and more than 100,000 monthly visitors on our site. To be recognized by such a highly respected industry publication is a real honor.” 

“This year’s Tech100 winners blew past innovation, moving beyond innovation to transformation,”

Kelsey Ramíerz , Associate Magazine Editor, HousingWire

From artificial intelligence and machine learning to marketing solutions, the HousingWire Tech100 recognizes companies driving innovation in the real estate industry. “This year’s Tech100 winners blew past innovation, moving beyond innovation to transformation,” HousingWire Associate Magazine Editor Kelsey Ramíerz said. “In both the real estate and mortgage sectors, fintech companies continue to create new ways to approach the housing process, improving efficiencies, cutting costs and creating a new experience for all parties involved.” 

“This year’s Tech100 winners blew past innovation, moving beyond innovation to transformation,” HousingWire Associate Magazine Editor Kelsey Ramíerz said. “In both the real estate and mortgage sectors, fintech companies continue to create new ways to approach the housing process, improving efficiencies, cutting costs and creating a new experience for all parties involved.” 

A complete list of HousingWire Tech100  Real Estate award winners can be found on the HousingWire website or in the March issue of HousingWire Magazine. 

ABOUT REALTYHIVE

RealtyHive is a global real estate company offering digital marketing and time-limited event services to a wide variety of real estate sellers from around the world. Each month more than 100,000 unique visitors from 190+ countries view RealtyHive properties located across 5 continents. To learn more about RealtyHive services, including risk-free and no-upfront cost real estate marketing solutions, visit www.realtyhive.com

ABOUT HOUSINGWIREHousingwire is the most influential source of news and information for the U.S. mortgage and housing markets. Built on a foundation of independent and original journalism, HousingWire reaches over 60,000 newsletter subscribers daily and over 7.5 million unique visitors each year. Our audience of mortgage, real estate, financial services and fintech professionals rely on us to Move Markets Forward. Visit www.housingwire.com or www.solutions.housingwire.com to learn more.

RealtyHive Exceeds $2 Billion in On-Site Inventory

Two billion of anything is a lot. Two billion seconds is more than 63 years, two billion miles is more than 4,185 trips to the moon and back, and $2 billion is more than the combined GDP of Dominica, Micronesia, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, and Tuvalu. This month, we’re proud to announce that RealtyHive now has more than $2 billion in on-site inventory. 

“We’ve  worked hard to become a leader in real estate marketing and this is a big milestone for us,” said RealtyHive founder and CEO, Wade Micoley. “We’ve grown from our first property, a $40,000 old schoolhouse in Northern Wisconsin, to having properties of all types across the globe.” 

RealtyHive features properties from 27 countries ranging from a multi-million dollar office complex in Panama to a $5,000 vacant lot in Florida to a palace in Egypt. Interested buyers can attempt to score a deal by placing a pre-event offer on a Time-Limited Event property from one of RealtyHive’s motivated sellers. 

“When a property isn’t selling, most agents will reduce the price, but there’s only so low a seller can go. If you’ve exhausted your options, or if you’re just looking to create more activity on a property, that’s where RealtyHive can really help.  We’re here to bring more buyers’ eyes to every property on our site,” said Micoley. 

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RealtyHive is a global real estate company offering digital marketing and time-limited event services to a wide variety of real estate sellers from around the world. Each month more than 100,000 unique visitors from 190+ countries view RealtyHive properties located across 5 continents. To learn more about RealtyHive services, including risk-free and no-upfront cost real estate marketing solutions, visit https://market.realtyhive.com

lady looking at computer

Move over Branding: The key to success in 2020 is not what you’d expect

It seems like some agents have all the luck. We all know someone that seems to have a pipeline of dream properties and buyers clamoring hand-over-(money-filled) fist to sign themselves into a new home while you sit and watch your listings grow stale. How do these agents do it? While nothing can compare to a well connected network, having a “secret weapon” in your real estate tool kit is the secret of success in 2020.

So what’s the secret? How can you get and keep more listings in 2020? It’s not about completely changing your method or reinventing the wheel, but rather it’s about having something different to offer your clients– something your competition can’t or won’t offer. It’s no secret we live in a global and tech-connected world, but have you thought about how you can merge your real estate business into the digital world? Event marketing is one of the best ways to do this.

What is event marketing?

Similar to a traditional auction, event marketing starts with a property being offered for sale at an attractive opening price. This price appeals to buyers which creates competition and the deadline of an impending auction creates urgency, ultimately resulting in a higher sale price. In this model, the seller retains control of the final sales price and the transparency the process provides helps the seller see the true market value. For agents, this can help overcome objections to price reductions or avoid them altogether. Buyers benefit from being able to determine what their highest/best offer may be.

hands signing a contract 

For Signing New Listings: Bring something new to the table

Between working on your “personal brand” via social media and networking or making sure that your advertising fit your “brand image”, 2017 was the year of “branding”. Designed to make you stand out from your competition, branding is great for marketing, but results are what really pay off. To extend your listings or to sign new ones in 2020, you’ll need to offer something to clients more results-oriented than industry buzzwords. Offering a solution or tactic that your competition does not will be the key to getting ahead this year.

RealtyHive Tip: Make a list of all the services you offer clients and potential clients. Everything from creating a BPO to the individual marketing channels you use for your properties. Now go through that list and cross out anything that your competition can do as well. If the remaining items are pretty thin, consider partnering with RealtyHive to have a true “differentiator” in your back pocket.

person using computer on www.realtyhive.com 

For Selling Your Listings: Show up and be successful

Woody Allen once said, “Eighty percent of success is showing up.” While he probably wasn’t talking about online property listings, he could have been! According to the National Association of Realtors, 51% of home buyers found the home they purchased online, but the average NAR member reports that their website only brings in 1% of their business. In a sea of online noise, do your listings stand out or do they just show up like everyone else’s? With the market as strong as it has been you should be selling upwards of 90% of the properties you list–the key is to position those listings for success and having a strong online presence is the way to do that.

RealtyHive Tip: Do you know what your website traffic looks like? What about your search rankings? Where is the traffic coming from? Are they real buyers or junk bot traffic? If your online traffic isn’t where you want it to be, you might consider joining the RealtyHive marketplace to create additional exposure and make all your listings have a unique marketing presence whether or not you utilize the event marketing platform.

handshake business deal 

For Untapped Success: Branch into new markets

With housing prices up, inventory down, and demand through the roof it’s fair to say that parts of the housing market are on fire! However, for every can-barely-get-it-listed-before-accepted-offer there’s a stuck-on-the-market-for-years property. From land to luxury, FSBO to commercial, every market has its own hard-to-sell niche. While most agents will run from this segment, you can stand out by confronting these challenges and land the listing by offering a new, exclusive solution.

RealtyHive Tip: Look at your market to discover where a need isn’t being met. Has a local department store sat vacant for years or has the same plot of land set vacant for as long as you can remember? These are indicators that tradition processes haven’t worked and you can use the RealtyHive Event Marketing platform as a never-tried-before solution to help land these listings.

Want to learn more about how event marketing can take your business to the next level in 2020? Check out www.realtyhivemarketing.com for more information or to schedule a meeting with a RealytHive representative. In less than 20 minutes you’ll learn how RealtyHive’s event marketing platform can help your listings reach a global audience, extend your listings and avoid price reductions–all at no cost to you!

real estate agent laptop listing

How to Set Up Your Listing for Success

According to the National Association of Realtors most recent report on the profile of home buyers and sellers, for 44% of recent buyers, the first step they took in their home buying process was to look at properties online. Compare that to the 17% of buyers whose first step was to contact a real estate agent and the importance of optimizing your listing for buyers becomes evident. When it comes to the marketing and presentation of your listings, how can you make sure your listings are set up with the best chance of success? 

One simple way to make sure to put your best foot forward is to keep WWBT in mind — What Will Buyers Think? RealtyHive is here to help you break down exactly what this means. 

Photos

With pages like Please Hate These Things or Terrible Real Estate Agent Photos  always ready to put up the latest in questionable real estate photos, it’s a good idea to err on the side of caution. That same NAR report also states that 87% of buyers who used the internet at any time during their search found photos to be very useful. 

RealtyHive Rules: 

1. Don’t include people (or parts of people) in your listing photos. At best, it detracts from what’ you’re actually selling. At worst, someone’s feelings are going to get hurt. Either way, it’s a lose-lose situation 

 2. Be wary of having photos with animals. Animals can be a great way to achieve the right kind of virality, but only if animal looks safe, healthy, happy, and are not caught on camera doing their “business”.

3. Make sure to get photos of (almost) everything. There are some things to skip — root cellars probably won’t make the best photos, neither will a room filled with a creepy doll collection. That said, if your description boasts of a wine cellar or private theater, it’s important to show off those selling features. Don’t leave the audience hanging. If you choose to skip over a room, it’s likely a potential buyer will think there’s a good reason you don’t have photos of it. 

4. If the inside or outside truly are a disaster, show only the best parts, but make sure to have an accurate description of the property. It’s okay to have a fixer upper or a property that “needs some TLC”, but it’s not ok to set unrealistic expectations. 

Descriptions

If it looks like a barn and quacks like a barn, it’s gotta be a barn, right? Wrong! With the popularity of converted buildings being used for residences and the growing popularity of residences to be short-term rentals, it’s more important than ever to spell out a property’s use, even if it is abundantly clear when you are there in person. In fact, the Realtor report stated that 85% of buyers found detailed information about properties to be very useful. 

RealtyHive Rules: 

1. If your property is used as anything other than what it appears to be, it’s vital to spell it out in the description. Have a property that is more suited to be a rental than a primary residence? Focus on that in the description. Conversion properties are one thing, but if you can’t tell the property’s use by looking at it, it’s up to you to clarify in the description.

2. If it’s a residence, there should be information on the number of beds and baths. If it’s land, you should have a plus-or-minus idea of how much land is available. For commercial properties, knowing the square footage is essential. These might seem really obvious, but skipping this information prevents you from landing in search results and appearing in front of buyers. 

Additional Resources

Some properties have additional caveats or information that is required. While it makes perfect sense to not reveal everything about a property in your listing, some things should be shared upfront to avoid any wasted time or hassle on anyone’s part.

RealtyHive Rules:

1.  Things like zoning, restrictive covenants, easements, and homeowner’s associations should be discussed upfront as these can be deal breakers for the buyer. You don’t have to put these in your listing description, but if you have the ability to upload documents or attach additional information links, you can weed out those who aren’t interested. 

2  Certain properties require more information than others. If your property has a searchable address, you may not need to include a map. If your property is simple “Lot X” having a map will help those looking for specific characteristics in a property.

Have a property that you’re looking to get extra exposure on? Whether it’s a home, land, commercial building or more, RealtyHive can help you find the right buyer for any type of real estate with Marketing Matters and Time-Limited Events!