Taking Your Business Card to the Next Level with Caruso!


Recently I read that virtual business cards are becoming a viable alternative to paper cards. However, there is still a huge demand for traditional business cards. When you meet someone, it is very unlikely that they will first ask you to tweet them for example. Instead, as your meeting comes to an end, you find yourself searching around in your pockets, bag or wallet for your trusty paper business card.

While the traditional business card trend is still going strong, you may want to consider optimizing the space on that little piece of paper. A growing number of professionals are finding it useful to include social media links on their business cards. Including social links on your card not only showcases your progressive approach to doing business, but it also gives your business contacts more choices in how they communicate with you.

If you are looking for new ways of promoting your social media presence, here are a few social media-friendly ideas for your business cards that will put you on the right track.

Sometimes simple is best. If you tend to focus most of your social media efforts on one social network, you may want to keep it simple by only printing your information for that particular network. The design of your card will benefit from the simplicity, and you’ll have more space for other features, like a social icon that identifies you.

As an alternative to keeping it simple, you can always vote to go with the “more, the merrier” approach. If you tend to be active on multiple networks, by all means, put them all on. 

Along with listing a variety of social sites on your card, you may also choose to use social media icons to add a level of familiarity and recognizability to your links. For example twitter, facebook and/or youtube icons. When you give your card out to someone, the social icons are most likely are the first images to catch their eye. Visuals are always a great way to direct the eye.

It is common for businesses to print their websites on company business cards, but blog links aren’t so prevalent. In a lot of cases a blog link can be more useful than a corporate website, because a blog has the ability to show the personalities, ideas and happenings behind an organization.

One of the conflicts with creating a business card, social links in tow or not, is finding the balance between personal and professional information. Should you include your Twitter account or the corporate Twitter account? Do you need your cell phone number, or will the office phone suffice? Is it too self-promotional to include a link to your personal blog, or would it be better to just stick with a link to the corporate website? These are all valid questions, and each company will need to find their own comfortable balance.

Just an idea, why not just keep it 50/50? This approach seems to work best for entrepreneurs and business people who maintain an active professional life online, communicating through both personal and corporate channels.

Distinctive business cards present the opportunity to leave acquaintances with a lasting impression. At a conference, for example, a single person may receive tens or hundreds of business cards. After a few days of meeting people, faces and names can become a bit hazy. An accumulating stack of business cards can sometimes seem more like a useless collection than a resourceful base of connections. On the positive side, there are often a few cards that stand out. Most often the outliers utilize high quality paper, attractive designs, or technology.

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.      www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

Caruso’s OC Happenings~ North County


NORTH COUNTY

 ANAHEIM

Southern California Residents, Get a Summer Pass and Save at Disneyland! Exclusively for Southern California residents, a 3-day Summer Pass gives you time to enjoy Disneyland Resort attractions and entertainment for one incredible price. From June 11 through August 29, 2010, visit Disneyland Park and Disney’s California Adventure Park over 3 days (one park per day) for only $108. Price per day is based on the purchase of an adult Summer Pass ticket for $108. Summer Pass tickets are valid only for Southern California residents within ZIP codes 90000-93599 and Northern Baja California residents within ZIP codes 21000-22999; proof of residency is required for admission. The Summer Pass is valid for three (3) 1-day, 1-park admissions to either Disneyland Park or Disney’s California Adventure Park, but not to both parks on the same day. Tickets are valid 45 days from day of first use. First use must occur between June 11 and August 29, 2010. Each day of use constitutes one full day of use. Guests may purchase up to 8 tickets per person per day with valid ID. Tickets may not be sold or transferred for commercial use. Offer may not be combined with other discounts or promotions. Subject to restrictions and change without notice.

BREA

This Saturday at 1pm Wet Seal will hold a grand opening in the Brea Mall featuring a DJ, and giveaways which include t-shirts, candy, tote bags and sunglasses. For more information you can call 714-255-1421.

BUENA PARK

Nothing to report

CYPRESS

Nothing to report

FULLERTON 

August 1st-7th is Fullerton Restaurant Week with over 30 Fullerton Restaurants! The foundational event provides a week-long culinary experience featuring restaurants throughout the city offering special and prix-fixed menus with price points ranging from $5-$40 for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Participating Restaurants include: Angelo’s and Vinci’s Ristorante, Big B’s Barbeque, Bourbon Street, Branagan’s Irish Pub, Brian’s Beer & Billiards, Brownstone Cafe, Cafe Hidalgo, Cantina Lounge, Cherch, Chomp, Commonwealth Lounge & Grill, ENVY, Florentine’s Downtown Grill, Heroes Bar and Grill, Joe’s, Karma Kabob, Kimmie’s Coffee Cup, Lomeli’s Italian Restaurant, Matador Cantina, Monkey Business Cafe, Mulberry Street Ristorante, Phans 55 Bistro and Bar, Revolucion Mexican Grill and Cantina, Roscoe’s Famous Deli, Stadium Tavern, Summit House Restaurant, Thai Basil, The Cellar, The Olde Ship, The Pint House, The Slidebar, Tony Roma’s, Tranquil Tea Lounge, Yogurtland and Ziing’s Bistro and Bar

GARDEN GROVE 

Nothing to report

LA HABRA

August 6-8 is the La Habra Corn Festival at El Centro Lions Park between Orange St and Cypress Streets one block north of La Habra Blvd. Admission is FREE! There will be food, rides, games, music and fun for the whole family. Also meet Miss La Habra and her court when you purchase raffle tickets for a new custom 1966 Mustang and other great prizes. You will enjoy hot buttery corn on the cob, great sandwiches, sweet warm funnel cakes and other tasty treats. Be sure to also visit the new Corn Festival Marketplace. Special Events include Corn Eating Contest between La Habra and Sonora High School football teams, Saturday August 7th at 1PM and a Cute Baby Contest Sunday August 8th, 10:30AM, at the Community Center. Corn Festival Hours are Friday 5:30-11:00pm, Saturday Parade 9:30am-11:00pm and Sunday 11:00am-8:00pm. For more information you can call 562-697-1704

LA PALMA

Nothing to report

PLACENTIA

Applications are now being accepted from bands, vendors, crafters, car show and parade participants for the 46th annual Placentia Heritage Festival and Parade on Oct. 9th. The theme this year is “On the Road to Prosperity”. For more information you can visit ww.placentia.org

STANTON

Nothing to report

WESTMINSTER

Nothing to report 

YORBA LINDA

Tonight from 6pm-10:30pm at Yorba Linda Community Center is the Taste of Yorba Linda featuring the finest foods, desserts, coffees, wines & beers!  Entertainment by THE PLEASURE TONES along with a dance instructor, Melissa Ames, who will teach the Salsa and the Swing! There will also be a Silent Auction with many gorgeous items to bid on along with a Grand Prize Drawing for a trip to Mexico. Pre-sale tickets are $35.00 per person; $40.00 at the door OR a Group rate of 10 tickets for $300.00.  You may RESERVE a table for 10 for $100.00. There are NO REFUNDS on tickets. Tickets are the same price for children and adults. For more information you can call 714-993-9537

  

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards.             

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI        

 2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors   (949) 753-7900

For more information visit orangecountyregister.com

Caruso’s OC Happenings~ Central County


  

CENTRAL COUNTY

 COSTA MESA

It’s that time again! NOW through Aug 15th is the annual OC Fair! Every Friday is $1 food tasting between 12pm-4pm and also every Friday $1 rides and games between 12pm-7pm. You don’t want to miss out on this fun and exciting fair only in town for 1 MONTH!

FOUNTAIN VALLEY

Nothing to report

HUNTINGTON BEACH

It’s back!!!! Starting July 31st– August 8th is the annual 2010 US Open of Surfing at Huntington Beach Pier. The 2010 US Open of Surfing is presented by Nike 6.0, Hurley and Converse. This is an Action Sports All-Star week, music festival and mega fashion showdown all rolled into one. Here’s just a brief overview of what’s in store: Surf: There’s no surf stadium like the Huntington Beach Pier and it remains the Headliner at the US Open, with five separate events, 300-plus competitors and more than $300,000 in prize money on the table. If you’re a surf fan, there’s no doubt your hero will be here. ASP World Tour Prime Event: Legends like Rob Machado, heavy hitters like Mick Fanning and CJ Hobgood, rising stars like Owen Wright and Dusty Payne plus 2009 US Open Champ Brett Simpson. Skate: This year, Converse Coastal Carnage will not only return, but up the ante with a more impressive roster of riders, a bigger and more challenging course, and a larger prize purse of $75,000. BMX: With $50,000 up for grabs and 20 of the world’s best BMX riders in attendance, you can bet on seeing something amazing. Featuring icons of BMX, like Scotty Cranmer and Daniel Dhers, are joined by today’s heroes, such as Garrett Reynolds and Brett Banasiewicz, as they look to dethrone last year’s winner, Ryan Guettler. Walk the Walk: To call it the world’s largest high school fashion show is an understatement because Hurley’s Walk the Walk added a whole new layer of opportunities in 2010. The five schools with the most votes are now here at the US Open and will be competing for a $25,000 grant. The world’s biggest high school fashion show featuring five talented schools that made it through the grueling video challenge process: Huntington Beach High School, Pearl City High School, Toms River High School, New Jersey, Lincoln High School, San Diego and a wildcard to be named soon. Walk the Walk empowers the youth to bring out their creative best. Every year, they raise the level and put together something worthy of Fashion Week. To date, more than $150,000 has been donated to schools from the Walk the Walk program. Music: Every evening from 4-7 p.m., a free concert at the Microphone for Youth stage. Featuring bands you love. Art: A handful of notable artists will put their thumbprint on the US Open, from exhibits to live murals. For more information on this very exciting event you can call 424-653-1900.

IRVINE

Saturday July 31st-Aug 1st starting at 4pm is the Bommer Family Campout! Gather your family, a tent and some sleeping bags, and come on down to Irvine’s outback in the mystic Bommer Canyon Cattle Camp. This exciting camping experience includes BBQ dinner, light breakfast, hikes, games, crafts, campfire fun and much, much more! For more information you can 949-724-6738. An adult must accompany children under 18.

LOS ALAMITOS

Nothing to report

NEWPORT BEACH

Now through Labor Day you can cruise Newport Bay and the fabulous Newport Beach coastline to the backdrop of live Latin music. This 1½ hour cruise travels through the world-renowned Newport Bay with over 20 miles of gorgeous waterfront estates and multi-million dollar yachts. Food and drinks included as well. The cruise takes place every night from 5:30-7:00pm. Call 949-675-0551 for ticket prices and other information.

ORANGE

Tuesday August 3rd from 6:00-9:00pm at TARGET is the 27th annual Americas Night Out Against Crime! National Night Out is your chance to get to know your local police department, learn about crime, drug and violence prevention, generate support for, and participation in, local anti-crime programs, strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships, and send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are organized and fighting back. For more information you can call either Brad Beyer 714-744-7327 or Michelle Micallef 714-744-7464.

SANTA ANA

Nothing to report

SEAL BEACH

August 3-6 at Marina Community center will be Broadway camp from children ages 4-6. The classes are 9:30am-11:30am. Children will learn to make their own costumes, hold mini-auditions and perform music from Broadway shows. The cost is $72 plus $10 material fee. For more information you can call 562-431-2527 ext 1344.

TUSTIN

Saturday, July 31st at Tustin Community Center Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Orange County is holding its first-ever “Hold ‘Em, Fold ‘Em, Save ‘Em” Poker Tournament on Saturday. The tournament is designed to raise money to help MADD support victims of drunk driving, as well as to prevent drunk driving and underage drinking in Orange County. There will be special guests Kelli Gates of the Mark and Brian Morning Show on 95.5 KLOS Los Angeles and Vince Van Patten, host and commentator for the nationally televised World Poker Tour and one of Hollywood Poker’s leading stars, will be on-hand at the tournament.  The cost for the event is $100 for entry, $25 for gallery seats and $50 for re-buys until 8:00 PM, limited to the first 100 players. Registration begins at 4:00pm, with tournament play running from 5:00 – 10:00 PM.  Players must be 21 or older to participate.  To RSVP for MADD’s “Hold ‘Em, Fold ‘Em, Save ‘Em” Poker Tournament, contact Tiffany Townson at 714-838-6199 ext. 15.  To learn more about the tournament’s sponsorship, advertising and donation opportunities, contact Desiree Garcia at (714) 838-6199 ext. 11.

VILLA PARK

Nothing to report

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards.           

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors   (949) 753-7900

 

For more information visit ocregister.com

Caruso’s OC Happenings~ South County


South County

ALISO VIEJO

The acoustic rock band Triple Threat will perform TONIGHT at the Opah restaurant. Echo Trio will be performing Saturday night. For more information you can call 949-360-8822.

DANA POINT 

August 1st from 4:30-6:00pm come for Concerts in the Park featuring a Tribute to Bob Seger. Also the Fighting 5th Marines and members of the Dana Point 5th Marine Regiment Support Group will be serving food and drinks at this Summer Concert. All proceeds from food and drink sales will go to help our Fighting 5th Marines. For more information you can call 949-248-3530.

LADERA RANCH

Nothing to report

LAGUNA BEACH       

Nothing to report

LAGUNA HILLS

Nothing to report

LAGUNA NIGUEL

Nothing to report

LAKE FOREST

Coming up August 14-15th is the Skate-fest 2010 Summer Campout! There will be a Video game VIP lounge, battle in the joust pit, or be King of the Skate Park 2010. Everyone receives dinner, breakfast, drinks, snacks, and candy throughout the night. You may want to bring a sleeping bag and pillow for the camping area, but most of us stay up all night. This event is for all ages and will be supervised by Park Staff. The Skate Park gates will be locked at 10:00 pm and campers will not be permitted to leave until 9:00 am the following morning. Video and photos of the event will be posted on EtniesSkatepark.com. The event is $45 per person and takes place at Etnies Skate Park of Lake Forest (20028 Lake Forest Dr). To register, sign up at the Skate Park the night of the event ONLY! For more information you can call 949-916-5870. The event is for all ages and takes place also on September 3-4 Fri/Sat 10:00 pm-9:00 am.

MISSION VIEJO

Saturday July 31st at Oso Viejo Community Park (The Village Green; 24932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo, 92692) come for FREE family festivities, live music and food sales; TK Burgers, Rubios, Bagels & Brew, Sno on the Go, Wine and Beer Garden and S’mores! The outdoor concert features “Target Symphony in the Cities”, which includes light pop, classical tunes and patriotic fare. The pre-concert family fun begins at 4:00pm and the concert begins at 7:00pm.

RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA

Nothing to report

SAN CLEMENTE

Coming up August 8th is the annual Fiesta Street Festival Block Party from 9am-6pm on Del Mar. This event features activities for the whole family, including: food and game booths sponsored by local nonprofit organizations, three stages with continuous live music throughout the day, contests for all ages, a Salsa Challenge, arts & crafts show, kiddie rides, a classic car & motorcycle show, exhibits, clowns, jugglers, face painters and much more.

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO

CALLING ALL PET LOVERS! There is a pet adoption special starting this Saturday the 30th at PetSmart in Dohney Beach. They are offering CATS for $100-$35, which is A LOT less than normal. The event takes place from 12-4 and will be held Saturday July 24th & 25th, 31st and Aug 1st. Each animal has been examined by a veterinarian, is tested for FELV/FIV, sprayed/neutered, wormed, current vaccinations, litter-box-trained and fitted with a microchip for identification. For more information you can visit www.capoanimalrescue.com or call 949-240-1735. There are too many homeless animals! Please consider adopting and giving an animal a nice and loving place to live.

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards.             

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI   

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors   (949) 753-7900

Jobs and Unemployment Update with Caruso!


It’s A Fact:
Nearly 1 out of 10 able bodied adults among us is unemployed. The administration is telling us to expect a near 10% unemployment into the extended future (California over 12.5%). To date, over $787B has been spent as “stimulus” intended to create or “save” jobs, and Washington is asking for more.

Much of the stimulus is directed to public works that at best create only temporary jobs or more bureaucracy that produces no income, goods nor marketable services. Many of these “created” jobs will require more tax revenues to sustain. This is where taxes are eaten up.

An outrageous percentage of the bailout funds targeted for financial and auto sectors was spent to shore up fat pension funds and salaries. Approximately 1/2 of the private sector jobs are provided by small firms (less than 500 employees) with the other half by larger corporations. This is where new jobs, marketable goods and services are created, where taxes are generated to support the public job sector.

The stimulus has resulted in the expansion of the public sector (increased employment and pay) and the private sector has shrunk (higher unemployment, fewer jobs). Every new reform being initiated in Washington is adding additional cost and tax burdens on the private sector while it expands the public workforce (all job killers to the private sector).

To avoid the deficit accounting Washington is ignoring the stimulus spending by placing it “off budget” as they have with Social Security, Medicare and other entitlements they cannot pay for. Little to no attention has been given to the small employer to stimulate job growth from the bottom up. But, much is being done to discourage it while the government loads up at the top down, a reverse version of trickle-down economics.

Now, unemployment benefits from insurance paid are being morphed into entitlements paid out, while ignoring the source of new jobs to employ the unemployed.

The revitalization of the housing market depends on a healthy private employment sector. This is where households are created and income is generated to qualify for mortgages. This is the soil that needs to be revitalized and nourished, not neglected, over regulated and starved of nutrition. The housing market is tied to the jobs market.

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.      www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

Caruso’s Green Tip of the Day!


 

Post Office Recycles Electronics
Next time you’re in the post office, ask the postal clerk for an envelope to recycle your cell phones, PDAs, MP3 players, ink jet cartridges, digital cameras, and small electronics. The post office provides this free service, and all you have to do is peel the label of this 6-inch by 5.5-inch envelope and drop in your mail box. And thats your green tip of the day!

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.      www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

REOs with Caruso


Recently. RealtyTrac the leading online marketplace for foreclosure properties, released its first U.S. Foreclosure Sales Report, which shows that foreclosure homes accounted for 31% of all residential sales in the first quarter of 2010, and that the average sales price of properties that sold while in some stage of foreclosure was nearly 27% below the average sales price of properties not in the foreclosure process.

A total of 232,959 U.S. properties in some stage of foreclosure are scheduled for auction or bank-owned. REOs sold to third parties in the first quarter, which is a decrease of 14% from the previous quarter and down 33% from the peak during the first quarter of 2009, when sales of foreclosure homes accounted for 37% of all residential sales.

The average sales prices on properties in some stage of foreclosure decreased 23% from 2006 to 2009 while the average discounts on foreclosure purchases steadily increased from 21% in 2006 to 27% in the first quarter of 2010. Discounts on REOs are larger than discounts on pre-foreclosures, although discounts on pre-foreclosures appear to be trending higher as short sales become more common.

Foreclosure sales increase 2,500 percent from 2005 to 2009
More than 1.2 million U.S. properties in some stage of foreclosure sold to third parties in 2009, an increase of 25% from 2008 and an increase of nearly 327% from 2007. Total foreclosure sales in 2009 were up more than 1,100% from 2006 and up more than 2,500% from 2005. Foreclosure sales accounted for 29% of all sales in 2009, up from 23% in 2008 and up from 6% in 2007.

The average sales price of properties that sold while in some stage of foreclosure in 2009 was 25% below the average sales price of properties not in the foreclosure process. That was up from an average discount of 22% in 2008 but down from an average discount of 26% in 2007. The average foreclosure discount in 2005 was 35%, driven by a nearly 50% discount on REOs; however, the discount on pre-foreclosures trended up slightly over the same five-year period, from nearly 12% in 2005 to 15% in 2008 and 2009.

Foreclosure sales by type in first quarter
A total of 144,503 REO properties sold to third parties in the first quarter, down 13% from the previous quarter and down 27% from the first quarter of 2009. REO sales accounted for 19% of all sales in the first quarter, up from nearly 16% in the previous quarter but down from 21% of all sales in the first quarter of 2009.  REOs sold for an average discount of 34%, up from an average discount of nearly 32% in both the previous quarter and the first quarter of 2009.

A total of 88,456 pre-foreclosure properties, in default or scheduled for auction, sold to third parties in the first quarter, down 15% from the previous quarter and down nearly 41% from the first quarter of 2009. Pre-foreclosure sales accounted for nearly 12% of all sales, up from nearly 10% in the previous quarter but down from 16% in the first quarter of 2009. Pre-foreclosures, which are often short sales, sold for an average discount of nearly 15%, up from nearly 14% in the previous quarter but down from 16% in the first quarter of 2009.

Nevada, California, Arizona post highest percentage of foreclosure sales in Q1
Foreclosure sales accounted for 64 percent of all sales in Nevada in the first quarter, the highest percentage of any state, although Nevada’s percentage was down from 65% of all sales in the previous quarter and 75% of all sales in the first quarter of 2009.

California posted the second highest percentage, with foreclosure sales accounting for 51% of all sales there in the first quarter – up slightly from 50% in the previous quarter but down from 70% of all sales in the first quarter of 2009.

Foreclosure sales as a percentage of all sales were also down in Arizona from the first quarter of 2009, but the state still posted the third highest percentage in the first quarter, with foreclosure sales accounting for 50% of all sales.

Other states where foreclosure sales accounted for at least one-third of all sales were Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Florida, Michigan, Georgia, Illinois, Idaho and Oregon.

Ohio, Kentucky, Illinois post highest foreclosure discounts
The average sales price of properties that sold while in some stage of foreclosure in the first quarter was 39% below the average sales price of properties not in the foreclosure process in Ohio, Kentucky and Illinois- the states with the three highest average foreclosure discounts.

The average overall foreclosure discount was at least 35% in California, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, DC and New Jersey.

The biggest discount on bank-owned properties was in New York, where the average sales price for REOs was 52% below the average sales price for properties not in foreclosure. The biggest discount on pre-foreclosure properties was in Rhode Island, where the average sales price for properties in default or scheduled for auction was 33% below the average sales price for properties not in foreclosure.

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.      www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GREEN GRI

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900