Marketing 101:  Best e-mail practices for winning new clients

April 01, 2015  |  Lauren Hartley

E-mail is both a blessing and a curse.  On one hand, it's easy to fire off a quick message instead of stopping what you're doing to make a phone call.  However, since it's a primarily text-based medium, it's easy for e-mails to be misunderstood.  This is especially true for potential non-lender clients who reach out to you for fee quotes or more information.  Without tone or visual cues, a hastily-written response to a fee inquiry can come off as abrupt or rude, damaging their perception of you and possibly your reputation if they forward that response to their friends and co-workers.  

Tips for last minute tax preparations

April 01, 2015  |  Ellana Walker

Still working on your 2014 taxes?  Check out two quick tips:

  1. Get your past invoices from your My Account page here
    Instead of rifling through e-mail or calling in to get your a la mode invoices for tax purposes, visit  Once you log in, you can see and print all of your receipts.

TOTAL for Mobile makes the most of the iPhone 6+

April 01, 2015  |  Tracy Boehrer

Phablets, those devices in the 5.5-6.5" range, are a popular choice for appraisers.  It's small enough to serve as your phone, and large enough to get work done on.  The next version of TOTAL for Mobile will improve support for the iPhone 6+ by allowing landscape orientation, and a new Sketcher layout that takes advantage of the larger screen size.

A positive appraiser group

March 30, 2015  |  Guest Author

This is a guest post from Dustin Harris, The Appraiser Coach.  You can find The Appraiser Coach All-Star Team in the TOTAL Store here.   

Jim Rohn is famous for saying that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.  Who is that for you?  Are you allowing yourself to rub shoulders with those who are successful, smart, and push you to be better?  It is true that we are highly affected by those we talk with, run ideas past, and listen to regularly.  I belong to many groups.  Masterminding is a big deal to me.  Ever since I read Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, I have recognized and tried to implement the principles of group collaboration.  It is a true principle that the sum of the parts is less than the value of the whole when it comes to synergistic groups who are pushing for a single goal.

I spend a great deal of time on the information highways where appraisers travel.  Whether it be Facebook groups dedicated to appraisal topics, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, or other social media, I like to keep my ear to the ground—as it were—with what is going on in the appraisal world.  Most of the time, these worlds on the interweb are a rich arena to learn from one another and share experiences that only another appraiser can understand.  One thing I have recognized over the years, however, is that there are times when these threads get a little negative.  Sometimes it can get downright nasty.  I suppose that can and does happen in the social world, but I have to unplug periodically in order to regain my sense of balance.

This is one of the reasons I created The Appraiser Coach’s All-Star Team several years ago.  The All-Star Team is a safe place for appraisers to come together and share ideas, knowledge, tips, and methodologies that help each other to be more successful.  These are positive, forward-thinking individuals who care about their own success and do not see others as a threat.  It is a synergistic approach to business where all who participate benefit.

HMFacts now available in the TOTAL Store

March 17, 2015  |  Guest Author

This is a guest post from Michela Di Carlo, the President and CEO of HMFacts, a cost approach report provider powered by Bluebook International.  You can find HMFacts in the TOTAL Store here

HMFacts is pleased to announce its Cost Approach Solution integration with a la mode's TOTAL and WinTOTAL programs for use in forms 1004 UAD, 1004, 2055 UAD, and 2055.  Appraisers can access HMFacts from TOTAL or WinTOTAL's respective dashboards or from within a report.

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