Puzzle gifts, Solar-Powered Car Speakerphone, and Free Home Inventory Software

A monthly rundown of the latest gadgets that can help you succeed in real estate.

September 1, 2010

A Puzzling Present

Make a client gift personal and classy with a precision handmade wooden jigsaw puzzle that comes together to form any image you choose, perhaps a photo of a newly purchased house or the skyline of a relocating seller’s new city. You can even embed silhouette pieces—specially carved pieces that are fun and personal, like your client’s name or the family pet. Special REALTOR® pricing of $375 for a 75-piece puzzle (regularly $595); mention NAR to receive the discount. Stave Puzzles; Norwich, Vt.; 802-295-5200; www.stavepuzzles.com.

Hear It Loud and Clear

Talking on handheld cell phones while driving is just plain dangerous, not to mention illegal in many states. But if you spend a lot of time in the car, it’s hard to avoid phone conversations. You could opt for a headset, but another option is a mobile speaker that links up with your phone when you enter the car. Scosche’s solar-powered SolChat is a Bluetooth speakerphone that attaches to your windshield or visor. Turn on the speaker when you enter your car, and it automatically connects with your phone (it also automatically disengages when you exit). The speaker announces incoming calls, which you can answer by pressing a button. It also includes volume adjusters and a charger for cloudy days. $99.99. Scosche; Oxnard, Calif.; 800-363-4490; www.scosche.com.

Take Inventory of Home

Your clients may not realize the value of their belongings. This free software can help your clients keep track of everything that fills their house—from artwork and furnishings to jewelry—and quickly see how much it would cost to replace. Once clients download the free What You Own software onto their computer, they can create a room-by-room inventory that serves as a record that’s helpful for determining how much insurance to purchase and when settling insurance claims. Users can even adwww.whatyouown.org

Shane Michael Singh is a Chicago-area writer and a former REALTOR® Magazine intern.