If you aren’t already using Evernote – the popular note taking and information management system – in your real estate business, you’re missing out. Why exactly do I love this program so much? Well, let me count the ways…
First of all, from a logistical standpoint, Evernote takes the cake compared to other note taking competitors. The following are just a few of the different advantages the program offers:
- It’s available across multiple platforms. Not only does Evernote offer mobile and desktop applications, you can use the online account tool to access your stored information wherever you are. You can even email information directly to your Evernote account using a unique email address generated by the program.
- It’s searchable. One of my favorite features of Evernote is that the text of your stored notes is totally searchable – even if it’s stored in images, PDF files or other file formats. This feature – combined with the handy Web Clipper tool – makes the program a great option for storing web pages you know you’ll want to access later and then calling them up on command.
- It’s free. Yes, Evernote does offer paid plans if you need to store more information on your account than the free plan allows for. However, in my experience, it’ll take a heck of a lot of note writing to exceed this limit, giving you a powerful business tool that won’t break your bank account.
But enough about Evernote’s features… Here’s how you can actually put the program into use in the field:
- Create listing notebooks for each of your clients. When working with home buyers, compile potential listings into unique notebooks that you’ve created for them. Then, if you have an iPad available, your clients can take text and audio notes on each property as they’re viewing it – creating a comprehensive tour record that will be stored for your later use and that can be emailed to the client from directly within Evernote.
- Create listing notebooks for each home you’re selling. Instead of struggling with a physical pen and paper, use an Evernote notebook to track property details, lockbox codes and other important information. If you really want to impress your clients, you can use your smartphone or tablet to take pictures of key property features while telling your customers how important it is to you to remember these details.
- Document important transaction details while on-the-go. Taking a home from listing to closing requires the coordination of hundreds of different details – from whether or not escrow checks have been deposited to when negotiated home repairs are completed. Evernote enables you to track all of this information from your mobile device with the click of a button – creating a record of information that can be easily searched for and called up later when you need it.
If you have an assistant or secretary in your practice, you can also take advantage of the feature that allows you to share individual Evernote notebooks with the people you specify. While in the field, you can take notes on tasks that must be completed and even add “task completed” checkboxes to these items within Evernote so that you can both provide your assistant with the background information needed to complete a job and track whether or not the work has been completed.
Really, though, this brief listing is only scratching the surface of what Evernote can do for your real estate business. For more ideas, check out this list of “50 Ways to Use Evernote in Your Real Estate Business” from About.com. Then, set up your free account and start exploring Evernote’s features. Before you know it, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without this fantastic resource!