Erica Christoffer is a multimedia journalist and contributing writer and editor for REALTOR® Magazine. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cool Tools: A Pocket Guide to Wood
Monthly rundown of the latest gadgets to help you succeed in real estate.
March 1, 2010
"What type of wood is that?" It’s a question that discerning buyers may ask when viewing a home with you—and if you don’t know the answer offhand, there’s a quick way to find out. The I.D. Wood app for iPhones has more than 100 full-screen images of different types of wood. You can browse by image or name and select any wood type to learn about the species name, origin, common uses, durability, sustainability, and more. The app also has a glossary of wood-related terms, information on lumber and lumber cutting, a thickness measuring screen, and more. $2.99 through the iTunes store. Double Dog Studios; Fort Myers, Fla., 239-691-6005; www.doubledogstudios.com/apps/idwood.
Home Is Where You Hang Your Keys
Handing buyers the key to their new home is a thrilling end to a sale. Now imagine that key on a steel, black-finish key hook featuring your client’s name—a useful closing gift to remember you by. The personalized key hooks can be customized with up to 10 characters and come in five styles, including ones that feature silhouettes of a cityscape, a mountain, and a home. Mounts on the wall with two pre-drilled holes. The hooks can also be used to hang small bags, pet leashes, or strapped cameras and binoculars. Starts at $24.95. Also available: personalized fireplace grates, door plaques, mailbox nameplates, and more. American Personalized Products; Greenfield, N.H.; 603-547-6311, ext. 137; www.giveapp.com.
Bookkeeping for the Self-Employed
Tax season is a good time to get your financial house in order. The free bookkeeping Web site Outright.com—which caters to small businesses—provides simple Web-based software for tracking income and expenses, receipts, mileage, and business deductions. Print out charts or graphs for easy-to-read reports. Outright also reminds you of tax deadlines and provides a preview of your Schedule C form with transactions automatically entered. No software to download. Data is secure through encryption and password protection. Free. Outright; Campbell, Calif.; 918-926-6578; www.outright.com.
Note: Prices are the vendors’ suggested retail prices and are subject to change. The NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® and REALTOR® Magazine don’t evaluate or endorse these products and aren’t responsible for changes in company information.