By Teresa King Kinney, CEO, Realtor Association of Greater Miami and The Beaches
For most families, school quality is a top priority. Next to price, school quality is the No. 1 consideration for potential buyers. According to the 2004 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, quality schools were the most influential factor for prospective buyers when deciding to purchase a home. Good schools also impact communities at large. A recent study by the National Tax Journal indicates that school quality directly affects home values. Therefore, buying a home in a district with good schools not only insures a quality education for your clients’ children, but also it guarantees demand should they decide to sell the property.
Agents should be prepared to assist their clients with all aspects of the decision-making process. When you provide them with valuable information that benefits them beyond obvious real estate issues, you not only impress them with your knowledge and resources, you develop long-lasting relationships that will undoubtedly generate future and referral business. Providing accurate and updated information also helps capture more clients and shortens the sales cycle.
The Education Fund’s “Parent Resource Guide 2006-2007” is now available. Inside, you will find everything your clients need to know about their children’s education, including pre-K, elementary, middle and high schools. The free, 88-page publication, printed in English, Spanish and Creole, is a “one-stop” source of information with tips to help parents as they advocate for their children in the Miami-Dade County Public School system. Many of your clients who have children, especially those who may be relocating or leading busy lives, may not even be aware of this helpful tool.
Make the guide available on your Web site
Agents can add a link to the online copy of the guide on their individual or company Web sites. Visit www.educationfund.org to download the guide and link it to your Web site or use the direct link: www.educationfund.org/pguide.html.
How to get your copy
A copy of the guide was inserted in The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald on Sept. 14. You can also view it online at www.educationfund.org. To receive a copy of The Education Fund’s “Parent Resource Guide” in the mail, you can send a self-addressed, 9- X 12-inch envelope stamped with $1.75 in postage to The Education Fund, 900 N.E. 125th St., Suite 110, North Miami, Fla. 33161. You can also visit your nearest Parent Resource Center to pick up a copy. Visit
www.educationfund.org for a list of locations.
The “Parent Resource Guide” includes information on:
• School choice – It’s your choice, magnet programs and schools, controlled open enrollment elementary schools, innovative choice schools, etc.
• What your child should be learning in each level
• If your child is ready for more advanced classes
• Online classes through the Florida virtual schools
• Requirements for the 2006-2007 school year
• Standardized tests your child will take
• What parents need to know
• GreatSchools information on your Web site
To help real estate professionals qualify and better serve their clients, the Realtor Association of Greater Miami and the Beaches (RAMB) offers GreatSchools as a service for its members. GreatSchools is the nation’s leading online guide to K-12 schools, including objective information for public, private and charter schools in South Florida and the entire United States. RAMB and GreatSchools provide real estate agents with the information their clients need to choose schools, support their children’s education and improve schools in their communities.
RAMB has bulk-purchased this incredible service for all its members, so it’s free to them. Just go to www.miamire.com/gschools.htm. Members of other associations can contract individually for the service by paying $299 for the initial two-year period and $149 for each year thereafter.
Your clients will thank you for contributing to the success of their children’s education. And your children can benefit too – you’ll be surprised by what you don’t know. Either way our local community benefits from any improvements in education.
Teresa King Kinney is Chief Executive Officer of the 13,000 member Realtorâ Association of Greater Miami and the Beaches (RAMB), which includes 12,000 members in their Residential Association and over 1,000 members in their RealtorsÒ Commercial Alliance. The Association also hosts the largest local International Real Estate Council in the nation, with 1,400 members. RAMB recently celebrated its 85th year of service to the industry, the public and the community.