Dad’s Birthday Present Ideas

It’s always difficult to decide what to buy for your dad’s birthday present. Your parents will appreciate anything you give them but that doesn’t mean you should just get him anything. Put in some extra effort to show that you care about him.

Firstly, some things you shouldn’t get. Dads don’t want sentimental, fluffy or adorable objects. Dads don’t need new socks, ties or fridge magnets. Dads already have a CD of their favourite music and DVDs of their favourite movies. And tools, unless he needs or asked for them are not really gifts.

But that still doesn’t help with what to get for your dad’s birthday present. You could always ask him but dads are usually more subtle than to tell you. Ask your mother, she may have some ideas. Dad’s love doing things and you can’t go wrong with electronics or something related to his hobbies and passions in life. A new set of golf clubs or tennis rackets are always welcome. Below are some great dad’s birthday present ideas.

1) Give him a new experience. Encourage your dad to try something new or something he has always wanted to do. You can usually pay for or buy a voucher for activities and experiences. Did he always want to fly a plane? Get him a flying lesson. Did he always want to be a racing driver? Get him a driving lesson in a race car. A day out doing something fun and exciting, to remind your dad about his youth can never go wrong. The possibilities are endless.

2) An MP3 player with all his favourite songs. Dads keep their old CDs and cassettes and an MP3 player may be something he has not considered getting. You can rip his CDs or can buy whole albums online pretty cheaply nowadays. It will be relatively inexpensive to fill an MP3 player with all his favourite songs to which he will surely appreciate more than just an empty one. Now your dad can listen to all his favourite songs in the car, while jogging or just in the house.

3) Running or walking shoes. A great birthday present for your dad is to get him some new and hi tech sports shoes. But don’t just give these to him, spend a day with him playing sports or hiking with his new present. He will appreciate the gesture and the time you spend with him.

4) Tickets for a sporting event. Every dad has a favourite team. You could get him a jersey or some memorabilia with their sports team on it but it would be much more meaningful if you accompanied him to watch a game with him. A day out with your dad sharing his passion with him will be a great birthday present for him. And if they lose, at least they will remember the time spent with you. Even if you don’t like the sport, going there with him will make him happy.

These are just four birthday present ideas for dad but there are a lot more. Remember, dads like doing things; they like gadgets and enjoy practical gifts. Find something that centres on their passion or hobby and offer to spend time with him while using your gift. The greatest gift is one that has the most thought put in it, not necessarily the most expensive one.

Real Estate Listings Today Need Top-Notch Presentation

In the real estate market today there are fewer buyers and many sellers. This is not the time to be lackluster in marketing your property. To lure buyers, an aggressive campaign to present your property in the best light is paramount. Whether a broker is handling it or you are selling on your own, your real estate listings need to be top-notch.

The internet will play host to your listing on a multitude of sites. These sites reach people around the world. No more small ads with a few succinct lines in the local newspaper. Today, your listing will be global.

Begin with the description of your property. Include every positive factor you can think of. Mention light-filled rooms, updated appliances, hardwood floors. Anything unique in the design or layout. Make your words fill the imagination of potential buyers.

The convenience and charm of the neighborhood should be included. The schools and recreational facilities should be mentioned. A nearby library is a plus. A great grocery store close by is a plus. If there is a shopping mall in the area, that is a selling factor. If your neighborhood is trendy, talk about bars and cafes nearby. By adding personal touches, you will connect with buyers looking for just those things.

This does not mean you make a folksy presentation. Definitely do not use amateurish photos or cutesy descriptions. Often a broker takes care of the details. But with a flooded market, you may not get the attention you need to sell your property fast. If you are taking on some of the marketing yourself, make sure the photos you post look professional. If you are not a good photographer, find someone who is. If you cannot write a decent sentence, someone you know can.

Pay attention to real estate jargon. The industry uses words to paint a picture of a pleasant home. Learn a few phrases by reading some of the ads. Make your wording upbeat. Try to be honest. If your house is a fixer-upper, it is okay to say that. By using that term, you avoid stating details that are not quite so wonderful. Highlight the positive, shade over the negative.

Never post dark, poorly exposed photos online. No picture is better than a picture that makes your place look like a dark hole. Also, avoid posting close-ups of the toilet. Yes, this is actually done. It is a waste of space and looks tacky. Most everyone knows what a toilet looks like and assumes one comes with the property. If the bathroom is clean, updated and aesthetically appealing, do post a photo of it. Especially if it has a window, a skylight or other elements that make it special.

Try to avoid things that, while necessary, do not make appealing photos: old radiators, hot water tanks, hanging wires or ungainly air-conditioning units. Instead focus on the fireplace, architectural details if any, good flooring, walk-in closets or large windows. If you have a view, this makes for a good photo. A night shot of a cityscape is compelling. If there is greenery outside, try to frame it nicely through the windows. A pool or rooftop deck should be shown in sunshine.

Never post pictures of dirty, cluttered rooms filled with personal belongings. Women take one look and move on. Good-looking photos will attract buyers. Make sure your real estate listings work in your favor for a quick sale at the best possible price.

Negotiate Is NOT a Dirty Word

To negotiate means to “attempt to come to an agreement on something through discussion and compromise” (Encarta Dictionary). It is something we do everyday in business and in our personal lives, yet we all are not 100% proficient. And for many the word negotiate conjures up negative reactions… it becomes a dirty word. Many people tell us they just don’t like to negotiate.

Because we are not all 100% proficient in negotiating, many people walk away from opportunities because they can’t come to agreement, or they leave money on the table by paying more than they wanted, or their discussions get heated or stalled. Why don’t we excel in something we do every day?

Negotiating involves discussing our “needs” (which are very personal), sharing our “wants” (which are very important) and communicating with someone else (who has different wants and needs and may have a different style), so many factors can get in the way of reaching that critical agreement.

To help reduce these potential barriers, consider these three best practices of top negotiators.

Keep Communicating with the Other Person

  • Stay focused on the issues that are keeping you from agreement. Create a give and take atmosphere so both parties share their wants and needs.Work to establish common ground and whenever possible, reiterate what both parties agree on to make it easier to work towards a solution.

Be Patient

  • Do not give up anything until you have the full picture and have all the information available. Try to get both parties wants and needs on the table before agreeing to a new solution. If you have a tendency to move fast in life, learn how to slow down in negotiations

Be Prepared

  • Before negotiating, develop your opening position, your bargaining strategy and your bottom line. This preparation can be done when the negotiation is planned and unplanned. If it is unplanned, (when a customer calls you out of the blue and demands a discount) take a moment to explore the customer’s issues. Then develop your first offer, some ideas for resolving the issue if the customer doesn’t accept the first offer, and the bottom line in terms of what you can do to find resolution.

If you remember these three tips of top negotiators, you will feel more confident when negotiating and be able to achieve more “Win-Win” outcomes in your personal and business lives. And negotiating won’t be a “dirty” word.