Why Cloud Integration And Backup Are Important For Real Estate

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The surge in cloud computing and real estate has increases exponentially in recent years. As mobile and cloud trends have pushed the industry closer to remote revolution, a growing number of cloud apps have helped make the migration process simpler and quicker. Real estate agents are looking for apps and services that will increase their sales, while reducing time needed to accomplish tasks and save money at the same time. The cloud has offered up numerous services and apps that do just that. In this article, we will take a look at some of the best cloud apps for real estate, and why cloud integration and cloud backup are so important for real estate.



 

How To Use Google Drive And Evernote For Real Estate

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Real estate agents have increasingly become interested in the cloud and the many benefits that cloud services offer. Especially for agents on the go- if you're too busy to sit at a desk all day, meeting clients, showing properties, answering phone calls and endless piles of paperwork, then the cloud is definitely for you. There are numerous cloud services that offer higher efficiency, cost-reduction and time-reduction for real estate agents. In this article, we will take a look at two of the most popular premier cloud services for real estate agents. 

Google Drive

Google Drive has many useful features for real estate agents. Not only does it offer one of the best document management suites, but it also offers simple file-sharing and integration with many other Google services.

One of the best features of Google Drive is the document management and collaboration. Documents can be easily created, revised, shared, signed and stored, all directly within Google Drive. If documents need to be collaborated on by real estate agents, clients, investors or other relevant parties, Google Drive offers the ability for up to 50 users to collaborate on a single file simultaneously.

Files that need to be shared can be dropped into the Google Drive PC app, mobile app or Google Drive website. So you can create a legal document in Google Drive and send it to the client, who can then use signing software such as DocuSign to legally sign the document online, and then they can send the document back using Google Drive.

Evernote

Evernote is a real estate agents third arm. It performs all the tasks that real estate agents wish they could do, but normally can't because of busy schedules, no  handy tools (pen, paper, recorder, camera, etc), or simply being away from the office for extended periods of time.

Real estate agents that are working remotely or traveling can use Evernote to quickly jot down ideas, create appointments, make checklists such as to-do lists, create and save audio clips, take photos using the mobile device's camera and save them to Evernote, and much more. And Evernote has a revolutionary tagging system that allows users to save any of these files with keywords so that they can be easily searched and accessed at a later time. Evernote can even search inside of photos for text, so if your photo contains text, Evernote can find it based on a few words contained in the photo. 

Integration between the two cloud services

The problem between cloud services is competition. Rival cloud services such as Evernote and Google Drive do not offer users the chance to integrate the two services. However, there is a third party cloud service that has now made this possible- cloudHQ.

The cloudHQ service takes all the Evernote notes and stacks and replicates them to other cloud services, including Google Drive. So if you create documents, checklists, to-do lists, etc, and you want to access them through Google Drive, they will be there waiting on you any time you check, because cloudHQ works automatically and replicates files in real-time.

One of the best features about an Evernote to Google Drive replication is that cloudHQ offers the ability to export Evernote to PDF format. This is a feature that not even Evernote offers. You can also save files in HTML, text, Microsoft Word, and practically about any format available.[i]

And if you want documents created in Google Drive to be accessible in Evernote, this is no problem. CloudHQ will export all documents into Evernote so you can have simple and efficient organization of files and tasks.

Google Drive and Evernote are two cloud services that make life simple for real estate agents. Organization, backup, replication and integration are just a few ways that cloudHQ helps agents attain such high levels of efficiency, while saving time and money.

*Pro tip: If you need to share large files, you may wish to add Dropbox to the list. Dropbox has no file size limits and has instant drag-and-drop sharing, so large files can be easily shared and accessed by both the sending party and the recipients.

[i] If the file format you wish to export Evernote into is not listed, simply contact the cloud professionals at cloudHQ and they will take care of it for you.

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How To Back Up Your Real Estate Gmail Account

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Google's free email service, Gmail, is one of the most popular email services in the world. Because it is actually a cloud service, it is accessible nearly anywhere at any time. However, because there is the possibility of data loss or loss of account access, there is the need to back up your Gmail account. In this article, we will look at some very good reasons WHY you need to back up your real estate Gmail account and then we will look at HOW to back up your real estate Gmail account.

Why you need Gmail backup

Some users have experienced wrongful accusations of ToS violations. Some lost access due to issues with Google Plus, resulting in loss of access to ALL Google services, while other users simply see years of their data deleted for seemingly no reason. The worst part is, that as common as account suspensions and terminations are through Google services, Google offers virtually no customer support and few options when you need to restore your account. And when you need access to your data but your account is disabled, you are simply out of luck.

In the most recent instance, an image insertion bug has resulted in users being locked out of their accounts for over 24 hours. Maybe 24 hours is no big deal to you, but it certainly can be a hassle and it can result in many negative results as real estate agents typically deal with clients and other sources through email on a daily basis.

Other disruptions can be caused by network and server failures, which can result in loss of access to Gmail for hours or longer. There have been multiple instances of power outages with Google, which also results in loss of access to Gmail. Or you may be one of the unlucky recipients of a total wipeout of Google accounts.

And of course, we must not forget the possibility of Google accounts being hacked and data deleted.

So after reading all that, you may be thinking to yourself- Perhaps I don't need a Gmail account. But the truth is, out of all web-based email services, Gmail is actually one of the most secure. The unfortunate fact is- incidents happen to every service. There is no protection that is 100% foolproof. But there is one service that comes pretty close to perfection when it comes to preventing data loss through Gmail or any other cloud service.

The Gmail data loss solution

There is absolutely no reason to fear data loss through Google accounts such as Gmail. The solution- cloudHQ. The cloudHQ service works by providing automatic and real-time replication of all emails and attachments to a completely separate cloud account. All attachments are saved in corresponding folders and all emails are saved in the same organization and structure that you have created in your Gmail account. So if you experience any of the tragic circumstances described above in this article, you can simply login to the backup account and gain instant access to your emails and attachments. It's simple to set up, watch the short video below to learn how to use cloudHQ to back up your Gmail account. Don't wait until it's too late and years of emails, attachments, files, documents, and other important data disappears forever. Protection starts now.


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Integration In The Real Estate Cloud

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As the number of cloud services and apps are growing, one thing is for certain- the demand for integration between these services is growing as well. A real estate agent's toolkit may be comprised of many different apps and services including Evernote, Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, Basecamp and more. However, very few of these apps offer integration with other services. Wouldn't it be great to be able to sync all of your Evernote notes to Dropbox? What about creating documents in Google Drive and having them automatically replicated to Box? Basecamp projects to Dropbox? Gmail emails to Box? SkyDrive to Dropbox? And what if you want your Evernote notes to be replicated in PDF format, a feature that Evernote does not currently offer?

How to integrate your cloud

By using cloudHQ, integration between all of these services and many more is possible. Evernote to PDF is possible. Having all of your files from various apps replicated to a single cloud service for easy accessibility and searching is a simple and automated process. You can choose to have all files replicated or just specific files and folders. CloudHQ's replication is automatic, so there are no manual transfers and you can continue to work in as many cloud apps as you wish, knowing that your files are being securely transferred to the cloud app of your choice. 

If you want to create a portable "office" in Dropbox, but you want to use all your other cloud apps, just set them all to be replicated to Dropbox. Evernote to Dropbox. Google Drive to Dropbox. Basecamp to Dropbox. SkyDrive to Dropbox. Gmail emails and attachments to Dropbox. And the formats you can have files exported in varies as well. Evernote to Microsoft Word format. Evernote to PDF. The list goes on. All files will automatically show up instantly in Dropbox as they are created. Any revisions to existing files will be instantly replicated as well. The cloudHQ service runs in the background, completely invisible to users so they are not interrupted during their daily tasks.

CloudHQ and real estate

CloudHQ has contacted and listened to comments, suggestions and criticism from real estate agents from all over the country. One of the biggest complaints about using apps is that they are not able to be integrated with other cloud apps. The manual transfer of data can be costly and time-consuming. CloudHQ has designed integration between many apps that real estate agents say they use in their daily tasks. This automation helps save agents time and money, so that they can concentrate their time on other important tasks. Cloud integration is here and it's called cloudHQ.


 

Real Estate And Cloud Computing

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Real estate and cloud computing together have changed the way that real estate agents operate. Smartphones and tablets have brought an array of various benefits to real estate agents. Mobile trends are now pushing real estate agents to perform most (if not all) of their work remotely. Some agents have even tossed the office and went completely remote and paperless.


The mobile real estate agent

Technological advancements in the smartphone industry have produced a slew of mobile real estate agents. With new apps and features, real estate agents can now stay on the road much longer than they could before. This makes multitasking a much easier chore as agents can now perform real estate duties as they pick their kids up from school, have lunch with friends or even while they are vacationing at the beach. Real estate websites and online listings can be managed from mobile devices, while homes can be searched from apps and websites. Nearly all aspects of the real estate business can be performed directly from a mobile device.

The paperless real estate agent

Sometimes just being a little more mobile isn't enough. Many real estate agents are kissing the office goodbye and heading out on their own. Completely paperless, agents can perform all their real estate duties through mobile and cloud computing. They can use cloud storage such as Box and Dropbox for their files and documents. They can use Evernote to take notes, photos and audio clips, as well as create to-do lists and maintain organization. Google Drive is practically a complete virtual office with the Google Docs suite of document creation and editing tools. It can also be used for file storage and sharing, and has the best collaboration features of any cloud service available.

By using these tools, real estate agents can perform all real estate duties from any location that has internet or mobile service. Documents can even be created and shared with clients. By using another app, DocuSign, documents can even be legally signed. Going paperless definitely has its advantages, and not just that agents can cut costs by not having an office and all that equipment. Time-management is a huge benefit as there is no drive to and from the office each day. Agents can actually perform their duties as they travel. By using numerous photos and video, agents can even sale some homes before the buyer has ever seen it in person or set foot on the property. But perhaps one of the greatest advantages to going paperless is that the filing cabinet is no longer relevant. Now instead of searching through paper folders and files, a simple search will find what you are looking for in seconds. Mobile and paperless both have their advantages and can save agents time and money.



 

Top 3 Tech Trends For Real Estate Agents

Social media

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Social media trends, led by Twitter and Facebook, have been on the rise for several years. As more people and companies are understanding the powerful marketing features of social media, it is becoming more prevalent among real estate agents.

A Twitter account has the potential to reach an unlimited amount of users by utilizing the "Retweet" feature. By posting relevant and interesting tweets, you may start seeing a high number of your tweets retweeted. And from there, they can be retweeted over and over again. But the tweets must be informative and interesting with a catchy headline.

A Facebook account is the next-best marketing strategy to Twitter. While Facebook does have over 1 billion users, it also makes users pay to reach all of their followers or friends. So if you have 10,000 followers, you can expect about 1,000 of them to see your posts unless you pay Facebook extra money. It's still a very effective marketing method, especially if you are willing to shell out the extra money to have your post seen by thousands of people.


Mobile

Mobile trends have exploded in recent years with the introduction of smartphones and tablets to real estate agents. More efficient apps have been developed which add to the surge. Mobile has allowed real estate agents to toss the office life and go remote. With the rising use of tablets among real estate agents, more work can be completed away from the office, allowing much more freedom and flexibility. Combined with cloud computing, it also allows agents to go completely paperless. 

Cloud Computing

Cloud computing trends have possibly had the most effect on the real estate industry. Combined with mobile and social media trends, cloud computing has changed the real estate market forever. The advantages of cloud services such as Evernote, Dropbox, Google Drive and more have practically revolutionized the industry.

Agents use Evernote for a variety of uses- from taking quick notes to creating checklists and to-do lists, audio clips and snapshots. Evernote has excellent tagging and searching features for agents to keep their notes, audio clips and photos organized by using keywords which are easily searchable. Skitch for Evernote allows agents to quickly take a screenshot of any web page and even allows users to select the portion of the web page they want a photo of. Evernote allows searching of text within photos so you can search for saved articles and web pages easily.

Google Drive is a mini-office all wrapped up in a single mouse click. Agents can use Google Drive to quickly create documents on the go, as well as edit existing documents. These documents can be stored and shared with recipients. Agents can create documents such as contracts or other legal documents, spreadsheets and presentations from their mobile device, laptop or computer. 



 

Top 5 Tech Tools For Real Estate Agents


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Cloud services have become the lifeblood of the modern real estate agent, especially for the real estate agent that wants the ability to work remotely. The benefits of time-management and cost-effectiveness of cloud services are becoming well-known in the real estate industry. The real estate agent that can create documents on the fly, send them to clients within seconds, have them signed digitally and get them back within a matter of minutes- this is the sign of the efficient real estate agent.


5 tech tools every real estate agent should be using

Evernote

Evernote is a real estate agent's organizational sidekick; it's much more than just a text program for taking notes. It's essentially a complete office all wrapped up in a little green package. Agents can create checklists and to-do lists to ensure that appointments and meetings are not missed, that photos are taken, videos created, keys left in the lockbox and other tasks that must be completed in order to complete a transaction. Photos can be taken directly from Evernote and tagged with appropriate keywords for easy searching at a later time. Real estate agents can virtually perform all aspects of a transaction from within Evernote.

DocuSign

Docusign is digital document-signing software that can be used by real estate agents to legally complete document signings over the internet. This saves time and money as real estate agents can send documents to their clients for review and for signing. The clients can receive the document, review it, sign it and then return it. This is extremely useful in situations when the real estate agent and client cannot meet up due to distance or other obstacles. 

Google Drive

Google Drive is comprised of a powerful suite of document creation and editing tools that real estate agents can use for more efficient document management. Agents can create, revise, share, collaborate on, and store documents within Google Drive. It can also be used in conjunction with Docusign to have documents signed and quickly returned to the agent.

Dropbox

Dropbox is one of the top cloud storage services around, mainly because of its easy-to-use drag-and-drop file sharing system. It also has no file size limits when sharing files from the app. Dropbox can be used to store large files- such as video, audio, presentations, documents and more.

cloudHQ

CloudHQ is a service that can tie other cloud services together. Notes, documents and other files from Evernote can be automatically synced from Evernote to Dropbox or other cloud services. Documents and files from Google Drive can also be synced to another cloud service. By using cloudHQ to sync files from one cloud service to another, real estate agents can access, view, revise and share files from a variety of cloud services. It also helps when agents prefer one cloud service but the client prefers another. Sharing can still be a simple process that only takes a few seconds.

Evernote doesn't currently offer the ability to export files into PDF format. But by using cloudHQ, agents get the ability to export files in Microsoft Word format, PDF or plain text format. This is extremely helpful as PDF is a very common format used among agents.



 

How Successful Is Real Estate In The Cloud


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Real estate agents that use cloud services in their work are already assured of being more efficient at getting things done, as well as saving time and money. But are they successful when it comes to selling houses? In this article we will look at the many benefits the cloud offers to real estate agents and how it has changed the real estate industry in recent years. 


Real estate agents in the cloud

In 2006, only 60% of all real estate agents had a website. In 2012, that number had grown to 90%, although I'm not really sure how the other 10% are even surviving. Not only is a website a necessity for real estate agents these days, but also because over 75% of all homebuyers use the internet to search for property, and over 52% of all those searches came from a mobile device. So not only do you need a website, but it needs to be properly optimized for mobile. If you plan on having customers see your site, you need to do this anyway, as Google recently announced they will be penalizing websites that are not properly configured for mobile use.

In 2006, only 6% of real estate agents used a smartphone on a daily basis. In 2012, over 85% use a smartphone during their everyday activities. As mobile devices are expected to begin outselling desktop computers within the next year, mobile and cloud trends should be followed closely by real estate agents.

Real estate apps are a huge help for real estate agents in the cloud. The top real estate app, developed by realtor.com, gets 20,000 home views per hour. Real estate agents are using mobile apps, and using them in a big way to attain success. 80% of the top real estate agents use some form of cloud service- file storage, CRM, mobile apps, email, etc. The cloud has changed real estate, and as it continues to transform the industry and push it forward, real estate agents in the cloud should keep up with all the latest cloud and mobile trends. Your success very well may depend on it.

How to sync cloud services together for greater efficiency

The use of cloud services can be confusing when there are so many to choose form. But cloudHQ ties them all together by allowing users to sync their data from one cloud service to the next. So if you use Evernote to jot down ideas and grab snapshots on the go, but you use Google Drive to create documents, spreadsheets and presentations, but you want everything stored in Dropbox because of its superior storage and file-sharing capabilities, cloudHQ can make all that happen. Not only that, but cloudHQ prevents any chance of data loss happening as it provides a complete backup of all data that you have stored in the cloud. When you are dealing with confidential client data, legal forms, contracts or other transaction documents, it's nice to have the peace of mind knowing that even if something happens to your data, you have a complete backup stored away in another account. It can be accessed quickly and restored in seconds, so if you experience data loss- by accidentally deleting files yourself, or by a hacker deleting your files, you can quickly restore and get back to work as though nothing happened.



 

Real Estate Opportunities In The Cloud


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Real estate agents can increase their opportunities in the cloud by using a variety of cloud services and gaining information about cloud services. There is no magic cloud service that performs all your duties (although Basecamp and Evernote come close) but by using a variety of services, you can increase your efficiency and save yourself time and money. 


Document creation

There are many cloud services you can use to create documents. Google Drive, Evernote and Office 365 (not free) are just a few of the services that allow users to create documents. In Google Drive, documents can be created using a variety of templates or from scratch. They can be exported in Microsoft Word format if desired. Evernote creates documents using its own format, but if you use cloudHQ, you can export them to PDF or Microsoft Word format.

Collaboration

Sometimes you need to analyze or review a document with your client, lawyer or other agents, and it can be a hassle to get everyone together at the same time. Perhaps the client even lives out of the area or is otherwise unavailable for a face-to-face meeting. In this case, you can use Google Drive to collaborate over documents or files. Up to 50 users can join the collaboration and can revise the document or file simultaneously.

File sharing

Dropbox is the most popular and easiest-to-use file sharing app, but there are others such as Box, Google Drive, SkyDrive, BitTorrent Sync and more. File sharing is made simple as many cloud services use the drag-and-drop method that Dropbox made so popular. When you drop a file into a shared folder, the file immediately appears in the Dropbox folder of every user that you have shared that folder with. It doesn't get any faster or easier than that.

Cloud backup

Data loss and security have always been a concern in the cloud, but with cloudHQ you can keep all of your data safe and secure. CloudHQ can back up all of your files, or just specific files that you wish to back up. This is especially helpful in the real estate industry as real estate agents handle confidential data on a daily basis. CloudHQ makes sure that no matter what happens to files and folders in the original cloud account, there will always be a secure secondary copy of your files that you can access in seconds.



 

How To Use Google Drive Documents For Your Real Estate Business


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Google Docs has now become known as Google Drive and is one of the most popular cloud services in the world. Rivaling Microsoft Office, Google Drive hosts a complete suite of office tools, suitable for creating, editing, sharing, storing and converting documents. And Google Drive is always accessible if you have an internet connection. This means, even if you are out working remotely, you can quickly create transaction monuments, collaborate on them with the client, have them legally sign it (if necessary) using Docusign, and then receive it back from the client. All this can be completed directly from Google Drive.

  • If you use Dropbox, Evernote, Gmail, Basecamp or other cloud services, you can back them up to Google Drive, or you can sync your Google Drive files to other cloud services, simply by using a cloud backup service like cloudHQ.

Here are some of the extremely helpful features of Google Drive that can be used in the real estate profession.


Google Drive document features

  • Convert most file types to Google Drive format
  • Invite other people to collaborate on a doc with you, giving them edit, comment or view access.
  • Collaborate online in real time and chat with other collaborators.
  • View your documents' revision history and roll back to any version.
  • Download Google Drive documents to your desktop as Word, OpenOffice, RTF, PDF, HTML or zip files.
  • Translate a document to a different language.
  • Email your documents to other people as attachments.

Spreadsheet features

  • Import and convert .xls, .csv, .txt and .ods formatted data.
  • Export .xls, .csv, .txt and .ods formatted data and PDF and HTML files.
  • Use formatting and formula editing so you can calculate results and make your data look good.
  • Chat in real time with others who are editing your spreadsheet.
  • Create charts and gadgets.
  • Embed a spreadsheet, or individual sheets of your spreadsheet, in your blog or website.


Collaboration and presentation features

  • Share presentations with your friends and co-workers.
  • Upload and convert existing presentations to Google Drive format.
  • Download your presentations as a .pdf, .pptx, or a .txt file.
  • Insert images and videos, and format your slides.
  • Publish and embed your presentations in a website, allowing access to a wide audience.
  • Draw organizational charts, flowcharts, design diagrams and much more right within a presentation.
  • Add slide transitions, animations, and themes to create show-stopping presentations.