Becoming a real-estate agent: should I take the plunge?

To become a real estate agent, or not to become a real estate agent? That is the question.

I think I may be having a midlife crisis. Or rather, a quarter-life crisis, since I hope to live past my sixties (“God willing”).




I’m not really sure what I want to do with my life anymore. Even though everything is going so well for me, and I’m pretty content. Have you ever felt like that?




Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the flexible admin work I’m currently doing and nothing beats being a mum. It’s pretty amazing, even when I’m forced to moonlight as a referee whenever one kid (usually the younger one, surprisingly) declares war on the other.




And yet, I desperately crave a change of pace and new challenges. Especially now that the Little Miss is spending two days a week at preschool and one day with my sweet mum.




I know what you’re thinking. Corel, honey, what could be more challenging than juggling school pick-ups with cooking and cleaning. Not to mention, wiping vomit off the floor when the tiny humans are sick?




Yup, that’s quite an achievement. And one I’m very proud of, especially since I’m currently doing some admin hours from home as well.




But I really want to put myself out there and work with adults, face to face. I’ve always been a people-person and quite the talker. My husband tells me that I could persuade a wall to divulge its secrets, if given the chance (though I’m not certain he means this as a compliment).



Real estate could be my future…

With that said, I’m thinking about becoming a real-estate agent.




I’ve read a few articles lately about the anticipated growth for Sydney’s property market. It seems like a decent time to enter real estate, as far as I can tell.




I understand that real estate can be a difficult industry to crack into. There seems to be the perception that you need to be a bit of a “shark” who knows how to make things happen. You have to be self-motivated, good at problem-solving AND have an engaging, honest personality. It also helps to be determined and passionate about what you do.




Not to toot my own horn, but I feel as though I already have many of these traits. The rest, I hope, would become polished on the job. There’s nothing like being thrown into the deep end to remind you of your capabilities (after all, it’s sink or swim out there).




The idea of helping others find their dream home also appeals to me. I used to help people in crisis find sustainable employment, as a full-time job, before the little Mister came along, so this doesn’t feel like too much of a stretch.

So how does one go about becoming a real estate agent?

According to my research, it’s not too difficult to become qualified at an entry level. In NSW, you need a Certificate of Registration to be able to sell or lease property. Before you do this, you need to complete at least four competence units:

  • Work in the real estate industry
  • Identify legal and ethical requirements of property management to complete agency work
  • Identify legal and ethical requirements of property sales to complete agency work
  • Communicate with clients in the property industry

There are also other courses, which aren’t compulsory, but could be useful further down the track (if I decide to go “all out” with this).




Right now, I’m really intrigued by the fact that I can complete this course from home. This would fit so perfectly with the part-time work I’m currently doing, and my duties as a mother.




So far the positives are:

  • As a career, there’s room for growth and I’ll be challenging myself
  • I could probably work flexible days
  • I’ll be working with other adults
  • Studying from home is an option (RETS offer a hotline support 7 days a week)
  • I’ll get to put my negotiation skills to the test

I haven’t decided yet, I need to think about it and do more research. This isn’t something I want to go into lightly, but I’m excited by the possibilities.

The post “Becoming a real-estate agent: should I take the plunge?” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2018/03/becoming-real-estate-agent.html

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Never underestimate the art of picture framing

If you’ve been following my blog lately, you can probably tell that I’ve been overcome by the sudden urge to spice up my life.



First step, launch a new career in real estate.



Second step, get another body piercing (location yet to be determined).



Third step, redecorate the home!



Final step, take over the world? learn how to dance salsa.



And not necessarily in that order either.



Right now, I’m obsessed with restyling my home. This process reminds me that small changes can make the biggest difference. I’ll wait until the kids are a bit older, before launching a major overhaul, but I’m currently making tweaks here and there. This is actually transforming the space in my house (as well as my head) in surprising ways (more on that later).



Part of this process has involved rethinking the picture framing in each room. After taking the time to clear out useless knick knacks, neglected toys and tattered objects in every room, I couldn’t stand to look at my old picture frames any longer. They looked glum, in comparison to the clean and fresh rooms.



One frame even had shattered glass in the corner, and I’m ashamed to say it stayed that way for over a year. It finally came crashing down one happy day, when the children were “singing” along to the Mamma Mia soundtrack while jumping enthusiastically on the mini trampoline (all captured on video, thankfully).



I interpreted this as a sign from above that it was time to get some new picture frames.



In case you don’t know this about me already, I believe in synchronicity (I can sense you rolling your eyes). After the Mamma Mia incident, I was flicking through the channels and saw Artform Living pop up on TV. Two days later, my friend told me she was on her way to pick up some frames she’d ordered from that very company, as we wrapped up our coffee date.



Usually I wait for three synchronistic strikes before I listen to the heavens, but I figured that two out of three “messages” is pretty good.



Anyway, I love my new picture frames. They really do our family pictures justice. Last year we had some beautiful photos taken by a photographer on the Central Coast, so I was pretty excited to see them in the new frames.



It may seem a bit unnecessary, but I also asked the installers at Artform Living to hang up the frames for me. After going to the effort to buy new frames, I didn’t want to lose another picture to enthusiastic trampoline dancing. They did a good job. I’m pretty confident that even a hurricane couldn’t shake these frames down (don’t take me up on that challenge, Universe).



By the way, I love this idea for framing treasured objects. How good does it look?



Now that I’ve done some basic restyling of each room, I’m itching to “feng shui” the entire house. Clearing out all the junk that we no longer use has lifted a burden off my shoulders. I actually feel lighter, mentally and physically. I want to take this feeling to the next level. My neighbour recently had a Feng Shui expert fix up their home. He swears that this entire process simplified and improved his life.



Maybe that can be my next project!

The post “Never underestimate the art of picture framing ” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2018/02/never-underestimate-art-of-picture.html

How I Managed to Start Blogging as a Mum of 2

What’s more, you don’t need to be a specialist on your topic in order to have a successful blog. For instance, readers of a cooking blog would prefer not to read a textbook from a food scientist, they need to hear the experiences of individuals who have really cooked some genuine suppers, and had slip-ups.
Furthermore, what keeps you going as a blogger is your passion. To become successful as a blogger, there is really just one requirement that is enthusiasm for your niche.

What is a Blog, anyway?

A blog is a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group that is composed of a casual or conversational style. To make it clearer, a blog is a kind of site that focuses mainly on written content, also known as blog posts. Generally, we often hear about news blogs or celebrity blog sites, but as you’ll see in this guide, you can begin an effective blog on pretty much any theme possible.

Examples of Great Blogs I’ve Found

When I was starting my blog, I researched the blogs and websites businesses that I’ve worked with or used in the past. This helped me learn how to format my content nicely and make it as engaging as possible. Here’s some that I recommend:

How to Start a Blog in Six Steps

  1. Pick a blog name

The initial step to finding a good blog name is choosing your topic. In cases where you don’t know what to blog about, there are a couple of approaches to having a decent blog subject. Pick a name that is simple, catchy and memorable. A good domain name for your blog name should be descriptive so that potential readers can instantly tell what your blog is all about just from the name. blogclarity.com has a great resource on how to choose a name.

  • Get your blog online
  • Getting your blog online is pretty simple. All you do is register the blog, and get hosting. To get your blog up and running you require two things: a hosting package and software. Fortunately, they normally come together. There are a lot of companies that would do this for you online with any hassle. I recommend Crucial as a great hosting company in Australia.

  • Customize your blog
  • To customize your blog, you would need to follow the instructions on your host. Choose a free template and tweak it. WordPress and Blogger offer a bunch of great, free themes to get you started. If you need help, check out a company like Digital Burst to give you a hand.

  • Compose your first post
  • This is the fun part! Since your blog is up and running, it’s an ideal opportunity to really do some blogging, take a pen and paper, or in this case, your keyboard, and create something extraordinary.

  • Promote your blog
  • Creating a very much composed blog and composing great content is only the beginning. In order to get readers to your blog, you will need to invest some time into promoting it and getting people to read it, especially when you first start.

  • Make money blogging
  • When you have invested the exertion of making awesome blog content and advancing your blog, profiting from your blog is simply easy. There are several ways you can make money blogging, from selling your own products or services, to getting paid to write reviews of products on your blog. But the easiest way to make money from your blog is to sell advertising space.

     You can earn from ‘Google Adsense,’ and choose from several options to monetize your blog.
    For more useful and informative content visit on Corel Mag for daily update that covers various niches from lifestyle, fashion, entertainment and a lot more.

    The post “How I Managed to Start Blogging as a Mum of 2” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2018/01/how-i-managed-to-start-blogging-as-mum.html

    What a great idea!

    I’ve been trying to track down a good deal (because as you know, I’ve been in the market) and I came across THIS:

     

    Not bad, right? I don’t getting $100 off for nothing!

    A friend of mine was actually interested in the franchise opportunity after they retired from service, so that’s how I first heard about the company.

    Here’s how he broke it down to me:

    We want you to take ownership of your store, and lay it out in a way that will suit your clientele. We understand that one size doesn’t fit all, and every square metre in your store needs to generate revenue. Our job is to support you by helping you get the best bang for your buck.

    I think he should do it! They’re after a lifestyle of independence and from the numbers and everything we ran comparing the different franchises, this looked like the best. Better than a lot of the alternatives that we talked about… I don’t even want to go there.

    Anyways, I’m off to enjoy my $100 discount!

    The post “What a great idea!” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2018/01/what-great-idea.html

    What an Amazing Process…

    I recently came across the art of wood-fired pottery on a trip to Perth, Western Australia, I was in awe of the process that transformed a molded piece of clay by days of wood firing into a beautiful pot. Here’s a video that illustrates this beautiful process of a jug being molded by hand to being hardened by fire.

    Pots are placed in the kiln, where they best fit. Gary Hootman explained to me that glazed pots are placed in the back of the kiln, whereas bare clay pots are placed near the front of the kiln or near the fireboxes.

    It’s truly amazing that this process can create everything from Whiskey Cups to Teapots, Platters and Pitchers, and Vases that as tall as I am! Some of the more exquisite pieces reminded me of the types of luxury Italian designer furniture you’d see in a 5 star hotel in Sydney.

    The kiln gets incredible hot – lucky for me I need to take the kids to swimming lessons, so I might take a quick dip myself while they’re in their lesson! With weather like we’ve had the last few weeks, I’ll taken any opportunity I can to submerge myself in any body of water I’ll fit in 😂😂

    The post “What an Amazing Process…” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2018/01/what-amazing-process.html

    Good food is everything, but cooking sometimes sucks…


    Another long day, followed by an exhausting cooking session. Instead of singing along to carols, I’ve been listening to the little Miss and Master whinge. I think I’ll pass (out), wouldn’t you? There are one hundred other ways I’d rather spend my night. Cooking is definitely not one of them.





    Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy cooking when I’m feeling relaxed, but not when I’m tired and grouchy (though I still do it without complaining).




    Let’s face it, I’m no Nigella Lawson (sadly my husband would agree, she’s his number one celebrity crush). But even if I was a culinary goddess, I never look forward to entering the kitchen after a tiring day, unless it’s to get a glass of wine or block of chocolate.




    Frankly there’s nothing better than coming home and putting your feet up, without worrying about cooking. As a family, we aim to eat out once a week, though this doesn’t always transpire.



    When in Sydney, do as the Sydney-ians do and head to this restaurant in Crows Nest



    Occasionally J and I get to escape from the kids enjoy alone time on a date night, but not as often as we’d like. There’s a restaurant in Crows Nest that we love to visit, even though it’s a bit of a trek from home! We usually only do this when we’re spending the weekend with family. But it will no doubt become our regular watering hole, if we move closer to Sydney in the future (we’re seriously discussing this…but eh, who knows).




    The Monte Alto cafe transforms into a restaurant and bar at night. If you enjoy modern Aussie cuisine, their menu is a perfect fit. Their food is pretty damn good and their drinks menu never fails to give me a buzz. They’re actually known for having one of the largest gin and whisky selections on the North Shore (I can attest to that).




    I’ve taken the little Master and Miss to Monte Alto for lunch during the day, on a number of weekends. Surprisingly they sit down long enough to finish a good portion of their meals.




    They’re major fans of the french toast, which they beg me to make at least once a week. They seem pretty happy with my efforts, but Master usually asks why it tastes so different at the Crows Nest cafe. I think by “different” he means “better”, but he’s too sweet to say. Thanks for sparing my feelings, little man! I raised you well.




    As far as other restaurants in Crows Nest go, I haven’t been to many. But if they’re all like Monte Alto, I’m willing to step out of my comfort zone and experiment a more. If there’s one thing I hate about dining in Sydney, it’s that so many restaurants feature that expensive “art on a plate” nonsense that barely scrapes the surface of my hunger.



    You shouldn’t have that problem at Monte Alto though. I’m pretty impressed by their variety of reasonably priced dishes, which are made from fresh ingredients.




    They also have a great selection of indulgent desserts, which is a must for chocoholics like me. My usual go-to meal is the Atlantic salmon – which is filled with flavour yet healthy at the same time. Although I confess, when I’m feeling extra hungry, I’ll go for a bowl of the chicken and mushroom fettuccine.The Belgian chocolate mousse cake is amazing by the way, I’m salivating at the thought of it right now.




    Do you have any favourite restaurants that you recommend? Particularly in Sydney? My troops and I will be spending the Christmas and New Year period with family in Redfern, and we want to try some new places!

    The post “Good food is everything, but cooking sometimes sucks…” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2017/12/good-food-is-everything-but-cooking.html

    Lovely people. Highly recommended

    I would not hesitate to recommend these guys to anyone. If you’re in the Newcastle area and looking to buy carpet, flooring or blinds, check these guys out:

    https://www.google.com/maps/d/embed?mid=1D4Nk_34KVdrUukCUXrS7cC09XwF0UWlV

    Probably the best flooring store in Newcastle. Once I stepped into the store I was stunned with the numerous flooring options available. Gone are the days when kitchen flooring meant some cheap and ugly lino. There’s some seriously impressive options here for affordable prices.

    Factoring my budget into the decision truly helped me find the right match without breaking the bank. Price is obviously an important factor for a family like ours on a tight budget, but I really had to consider all options, meaning the lowest price for the floor that fit our home and lifestyle the best.

    They were also extremely knowledgeable about shutters and blinds. I have somewhat of a unique setup at home with different window types, angles, etc (i’m no window expert, but hubby helped me get some measurements) and they were very helpful.

    We have some timber venetians at the moment which are fading from the outside sunlight (these windows draw a lot of sunshine during the day) so I wanted something that will last. Dual roller blinds are extremely popular in my circle of friends. The bonus is that if you purchase from a reputable company like these guys, their fabrics are covered under warranty – so this helps minimise the risk in fading. Talk about a lifesaver!

    We also discussed fabris of the different types of blinds. I hear that darker colors do give good vision, however lighter colored fabrics reflect more light and thus provide limited vision through them. Pretty cool, huh?

    Check out their range of shutters and blinds in Newcastle. I’m thinking venetians for our living spaces, and maybe splurging on some automated shutters too!

    After discussing it all, the idea of these dual roller blinds sits really well with us. Does anyone else have experience with them? My only concern is the cables around the kids, but other than that they look pretty good too. Decisions, decisions!

    The post “Lovely people. Highly recommended” was originally posted on http://www.corelmag.com/2017/12/lovely-people-highly-recommended.html