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BOOK REVIEW: Columnist, Educator Edith Lank Puts Some Fun Back Into Real Estate with ‘I’ve Heard It All and So Should You’

Posted by kinchendavid on February 1, 2007

Reviewed By David M. Kinchen
Huntington News Network Book Critic

Hinton, WV  – Real estate is no laughing matter for most folks: It’s deadly serious – too serious. Now comes real estate columnist and educator Edith Lank with “I’ve Heard It All and So Should You: Confessions of a Real Estate Columnist (Dearborn Real Estate Education, Chicago: 250 pages, $22.39 paperback) to put some laughter back into the subject.

As fans of the 1929 Marx Brothers comedy “The Cocoanuts” (about the Florida land boom and bust of the 1920s) know, there’s a lot of humor in housing. Lank, based in upstate New York and the author of eight previous books on real estate – all serious tomes – looks at the lighter side of property in a book that collects letters and emails from her syndicated column – a column that appears in more than 100 newspapers and web sites.

Think Ann Landers or Dear Abby and you’ve got a pretty good idea of what Edith (I can call her that because I’ve known her and husband Norm and their son Avi for years from my membership in the National Association of Real Estate Editors) is up to in this entertaining and informative book.

Yes, humor can be informative, because a funny book with real-life situations is an excellent teaching tool. Edith Lank, a former real estate broker, has written textbooks on real estate law in New York and New Jersey and has taught pre-licensing classes for prospective real estate agents.

Down through the years, buyers and sellers have asked Edith Lank questions that they’re too embarrassed to ask their own agents. She shows that situations that might seem obvious to the experienced broker or sales person are not necessarily all that obvious to lay people.

Here are some samples from the book:

* “…please send all information on how to sell our home without using a realator. I think you call it being a FSOB…”

* “Would adding extra to our mortgage payment save us money in the long run? If so, should we pay extra on principal, interest or escrow?

* “I would appreciate any information on Fanny Mae. Also if she has any books out…”

* “Hello Edith: I don’t know what to do. First of all I’m incarcerated and the reason is my husband, well x-husband was sleeping around with my best friend and I walked in on them in our home and lost it with a golf club…”

* “Forgive the ‘Dr. Laura’ nature of this letter. Recently my fiancée allowed a friend of hers to rent a room from us while she gets her life back on track. The only lease is a verbal agreement, and her rent is a token amount. However, I’m growing tired of her lifestyle with a steady stream of men entering our house….how do I go about removing her with no written lease?”

* “Dear Edith: My daughter recently bought a home and is interested in how to pay it off so she will save as much as possible. I saw an account in your column but forgot about it and used it to wrap some jars. I would like you to send me a copy so I can give it to her.”

Edith notes in her delightful, informative book: “At least she didn’t use it to wrap fish!”

If you think you know a lot about real estate, think again. You don’t know Jack compared to Edith Lank. But after reading her new book, you’ll be both entertained and educated. It’s an unbeatable combination.

About the Author: Edith Lank’s real estate column has won awards for journalistic excellence and consumer education from the National Association of Real Estate Editors, the Real Estate Educators Association, the Mortgage Bankers Association, various Bar Associations and NAR. She has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, Minnesota Public Radio, Public Radio International, has hosted her own television and radio shows and is heard weekly on public radio at WXXI-FM in her hometown of Rochester, NY. Edith has taught real estate at the college level for 15 years, and her work has been published in many national magazines. Edith is a past director of the National Association of Real Estate Editors and also of the Real Estate Educators Association.

Publisher’s web site: http://www.dearbornRE.com



3 Responses to “BOOK REVIEW: Columnist, Educator Edith Lank Puts Some Fun Back Into Real Estate with ‘I’ve Heard It All and So Should You’”

  1. awebern said

    Your readers may also be interested in visiting Edith Lank’s personal website, AskEdith.com, where people can browse through Edith’s advice columns and even ask Edith new questions of their own. Edith checks the site regularly and responds to new questions within 72 hours, for free!

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  3. west virginia real estate land…

    Now is the time to invest in US property, Don’t abandon it, invest in it….

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