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Friday, February 26, 2010

California GRI classes for the week of March 1

GRI Schedule

San Jose - Mar 2 (Tue) - GRI #109 Residential Real...
Anaheim - Mar 2 (Tue) - GRI #109 Residential Real...
Pasadena - Mar 3 (Wed) - GRI #105 Legal Issues...
Corona - Mar 5 (Fri) - GRI #113 Real Property, T...
Santa Rosa - Mar 5 (Fri) - GRI #108 GRI Risk Managem...

More information: All GRI schedules | How to Register | (888) 785-4800

Friday, February 19, 2010

California GRI classes for Feb. 22

GRI Schedule

Pleasanton - Feb 24 (Wed) - GRI #113 Real Property, T...
Bakersfield - Feb 24 (Wed) - GRI #114 Essential Concep...
Palm Springs - Feb 24 (Wed) - GRI #100 Agency Relations...
Palm Springs - Feb 24 (Wed) - GRI #101 Ethics, Professi...
Fresno - Feb 25 (Thu) - GRI #113 Real Property, T...
San Diego - Feb 26 (Fri) - GRI #110 Marketing, Finan...
San Gabriel - Feb 26 (Fri) - GRI #109 Residential Real...

More information: All GRI schedules | How to Register | (888) 785-4800

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Running Out of Space on your Hard Drive?

Is your computer running really slow? Have you received error messages when downloading or installing applications? You may be running out of space on your hard drive. Before you go out and buy a new hard drive or a new computer all-together, there are a few things you can do to fix the problem in the meantime.

<strong>Running out of Disk Space?</strong> First, take a look at the disk space. Double click on the My Computer Icon on the Desktop, or click on the My Computer icon located in the Start Menu. (In Windows 7 and Vista, this has been changed to Computer.) Locate the hard disk drive. It will most likely be called Local Disk (C:). Right click on the drive and click on Properties. If the free space on the computer is less than 15% of the total space, you will need to clean out the computer. (For example, if you have a 100GB hard drive, you will need a minimum of 15GB free in order for the computer to function properly.)

If you need to free up space on your computer, then here are just few things that you can do.

Download and run CCleaner. This is the easiest and fastest way to free up the hard drive.

<strong>Running out of Disk Space?</strong>

Disk Cleanup
From the Local Disk (C:) Properties dialog box, click on Disk Cleanup or go to the Start Menu -->All Programs -->Accessories -->System Tools and choose Disk Cleanup from the menu. Run Disk Cleanup.

<strong>Running out of Disk Space?</strong> After it has finished calculating how much space will be freed, you will be prompted to choose the types of files you would like to delete.

Check all the files in the list. (Downloaded Program Files, Temporary Internet Files, Offline WebPages, etc.)

Note: I will often leave “Office Setup Files” unchecked. This can be useful if you do not want to always look for the Microsoft Office Installation Disks every time you need to run a repair or make changes to the Microsoft Office Installation.

Click Yes when asked if you want to perform these actions.

This may take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours depending on the speed of the computer and how much needs to be cleaned up. (If you have already run CCleaner, it will not take as long.)

Delete Unnecessary and Temporary Files

Go through the folders on the hard drive one by one and delete unnecessary files.
  • Do not delete anything in the Windows directory.

  • Do not delete anything in the Program files directory (yet).

  • Do not delete anything that you do not recognize, just in case it is a necessary file.

  • What you can delete are temporary folders (for example, c:\TEMP), document files and downloaded files that are no longer needed.

  • You can also download a hard drive visualization program, such as WinDirStat, to help you determine which files and folders take up the most space on the hard drive.

<strong>Running out of Disk Space?</strong>

Add/Remove Programs
Open CCleaner and click on the Tools tab on the left hand side. Click on Uninstall. If you do not want to download and install CCleaner, you can use Add/Remove Programs located in the Control Panel. Uninstall any unnecessary programs.

Once you have uninstalled those unnecessary programs and restarted the computer, you can go into the Program Files folder and search for the folders that contained these programs. If they are still in the Program Files folder, you can delete them.

Move Files to a New Drive

If you have purchased a new hard drive, then you can begin moving over some of the files.

<strong>Running out of Disk Space?</strong> One of the easiest things to move over is the My Documents folder. From the Desktop, right click My Documents. You can also access the My Documents folder from the Start Menu. From the right-click menu, choose Properties. In the Target tab, click on the Move… button and choose a new location for the My Documents folder on the new hard drive.

You can also move over documents, downloads, and other files that are located in folders other than the My Documents folder.

If you have to move over programs, you will need to uninstall them from the old hard drive and reinstall them on the new hard drive. Sometimes, you will have to choose custom or advanced settings for the installation in order to install the program on a drive other than the C: Drive.

Compress Drive to Save Disk Space

If you still need to free up some room on the hard drive, you may want to consider allowing Windows to compress the drive. If you go back to Local Disk (C:) Properties, you will see an option to Compress drive to save disk space. Once you check this box and click OK, the drive compression will start. This process may take hours, but will free up room on the hard drive. The drawback is that files that have been compressed may take longer to open.

If you don't want to compress the whole drive, you also have the option to only compress files and folders of your choosing. For example, if you want to compress the files located in the My Documents folder, you would right-click on My Documents and click on Properties. In the General tab, click on the Advanced button. Under Compress or Encrypt attributes, check the option to compress contents to save disk space.

<strong>Running out of Disk Space?</strong>

Once you have completed these steps, you should run Disk Defragmenter. You can find Disk Defragmenter in the Tools tab of the Local Disk (C:) Properties dialog box or in Start Menu -->All Programs -->Accessories -->System Tools.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A GRI Student's Experience

Student Anna Campell shares her GRI experience in her blog.

California Association of Realtors® provides Graduate Realtor® Institute (GRI) for all associated real estate agents within the California area. The GRI designation provides real estate agents, real estate brokers, and the general public an opportunity to learn about every area pertaining to real estate in depth.

Attending the Environmental Concerns, Construction overview and Land Use Course 112 on Wednesday, January 27, 2010 in Pleasanton, CA provided me with an in depth understanding about how the environment affects property values and insurance claims. How construction styles and levels of quality impact home buyers and sellers. And how land use can effect the level of use and value.

Our instructor, Mr. Ignacio Gonzalez, had over twenty (20) years of experience in various fields directly effected by environmental concerns, construction, and land use. Mr. Gonzalez provided us with real life experiences, stories, and examples so that we could understand how each of these areas can impact us as real estate agents and also home sellers or home buyers. The practical information Mr. Gonzalez provided also included why vacant homes often have a "sewer" type smell in them during a showing. This is caused by the tubing connecting the sinks, toilets, and showers to the sewer line. While in use, a small amount of water catches in the pipe and blocks the “sewer” smell from entering. However, when the sinks, toilets, and showers are not used for a certain length of time, that water evaporates and the "sewer" smell is able to get through.

While this class was a day long event, it was needed in order to pass on the amount of information and practical knowledge this specific instructor had to share.

The class concluded with an exam that was being graded later with the scores and/or certificates being sent to the attendees at a later date. The entire course consists of fourteen (14) classes. I would encourage anyone that owns a property, interested in purchasing a property, or becoming a real estate agent or broker to attend these courses.

For more information about what a GRI designation can provide for you or about individual classes visit the California Association Realtor®'s approved website: http://edesignations.com

Friday, February 12, 2010

California GRI Classes for the week of Feb 15

GRI Schedule

Antioch - Feb 18 (Thu) - GRI #114 Essential Concep...

More information: All GRI schedules | How to Register | (888) 785-4800

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Great iPhone App for REALTORS® from Better Homes & Gardens

Better Homes & Gardens iPhone App

Trulia's iPhone app is a great tool that can help you locate homes for sale while you are on the road.

However, if you are a REALTOR®, we recommend that you take a look at the Better Homes & Gardens iPhone app. It is a very useful tool that provides detailed information on the neighborhood.

You can quickly and easily access information for potential Buyers on everything from population demographics to the best schools in the area.

If you find yourself in an area you are unfamiliar with, it is helpful to have the following information to provide to an inquisitive buyer:
  • Home Values: Sales activity and recent price trends
  • Community Information: Who lives in the neighborhood
  • School Information: Detailed information on schools in the area, its GreatSchool rating, and information on the Students and the Faculty
  • Points of Interest: Restaurants, shopping malls, movie theaters and banks
It can also help your potential buyers organize photos and information they have gathered on the properties that you have shown them. This will help them keep properties fresh in their memories.

Friday, February 5, 2010

California GRI classes for the week of Feb. 8

GRI Schedule

Laguna Hills - Feb 9 (Tue) - GRI #114 Essential Concep...
San Luis Obispo - Feb 10 (Wed) - GRI #107 Technology Appli...
Pasadena - Feb 10 (Wed) - GRI #102 Trust Fund Manag...
Pasadena - Feb 10 (Wed) - GRI #104 Fair Housing...
Vista - Feb 11 (Thu) - GRI #106 Money Making Str...
Sacramento - Feb 11 (Thu) - GRI #100 Agency Relations...
Sacramento - Feb 11 (Thu) - GRI #101 Ethics, Professi...
San Mateo - Feb 11 (Thu) - GRI #110 Marketing, Finan...
Corona - Feb 12 (Fri) - GRI #112 Environmental Co...

More information: All GRI schedules | How to Register | (888) 785-4800