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April 14, 2015


BE A HERO TOMORROW, APRIL 15
You, Too, Can Save Lives at the PGCAR Blood Drive

Set yourself a reminder for tomorrow -- Wednesday, April 15 -- for anytime between 9 am and 2:30 pm. Now title your reminder "Save Lives". Yes, you read that right! In addition to April 15 being "Tax Day" you can also save lives this week. In fact, when you join us for the Red Cross Blood Drive at the PGCAR offices, you can save up to three lives, just by giving blood to the American Red Cross.

Encourage family, friends, customers and colleagues to join us, too: all are welcome!

Blood donors save lives.
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The Fourth Annual David Maclin Scholarship 5K Fundraiser
is Next Saturday, April 25. Be There!

SIGN UP YOUR ENTIRE OFFICE OR YOUR FRIENDS AS A TEAM >
Only $150 for up to 10 teammates | Only $300 for more than 10


All that's needed is to click here and pay the registration for your number of teammates. For example, sign up for 10 (or 11, or 12) teammates; supply the names, ages and t-shirt sizes you know; have the others show up early on April 25 for on-site check-in as members of your team.
David Maclin Scholarship 5K Fundraiser


Thank You! from Maclin Scholarship Winner Travis Leachman

Travis Latchman wins David Maclin Scholarship "I am thankful that organizations like the Prince George's County Association of REALTORS® exist. I am thankful that the association created their scholarship fund to really accentuate the value of education, especially for students like me in Prince George's County.

As a recipient of this award, I am now inspired to live up to my greatest potential. I feel that anything is possible, and I hope to exceed all of the organization's expectations with my future endeavors in college and beyond. I am inspired to do justice to this award academically and through my continued service to the community. I hope to make the association proud by giving my best in everything I pursue.

If you choose to support the REALTOR® Association's scholarship fund, just know that you are changing the lives of students like me. Thank you very much!

Travis Latchman
The Johns Hopkins University '17

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Call to Action VICTORY!
You Said "NO" to State Legislators
Imposing a 6-Month Foreclosure Moratorium
Exclusively in Prince George's County.
Legislators Listened.

THANK YOU for contacting your Delegate to oppose SB 756.

During the week of March 23, the Prince George's County Delegation in Annapolis was considering legislation to impose a six-month moratorium on foreclosures EXCLUSIVELY in Prince George's County. REALTORS® were opposed to this concept, as we believe that it would have drastically slowed our fragile real estate market recovery. The current statewide foreclosure process is fair and well conceived. There are numerous notice requirements to protect consumers and legislated mediation opportunities for consumers to negotiate with lenders. A moratorium would have caused more harm than good. We needed help to urge our Legislators in Annapolis to OPPOSE the foreclosure moratorium!

Within a few days of members contacting our Delegates, the Senate REMOVED the 6-month foreclosure moratorium which was exclusive to Prince George's County, from proposed state legislation SB 756.

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LEGISLATIVE ALERT - March 28, 2015

County Executive Baker Seeks Increase in Property Taxes

Recently County Executive Rushern Baker released his budget proposal for fiscal year 2016. Much to our surprise, the County Executive is proposing to increase the Prince George's County property tax rate by 15%. That is an additional annual property tax of $375 on a home assessed at $250,000.

Prince George's County already leads the Maryland metro area in closing costs and property taxes, not to mention foreclosures and short sales. Our housing market is too fragile right now to sustain a property tax at this rate.

REALTORS® across the County are gearing up to challenge this increase. In the very near future, PGCAR will be asking members to contact the County Executive and the County Council to make your opposition known.

Please keep an eye out for "calls-to-action" to fight the property tax increase.
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SECOND ANNUAL PGCAR RPAC BOWLING CHALLENGE

The 2nd Annual PGCAR RPAC Bowling Challenge was held on March 21st at Capital Plaza Lanes in Landover Hills. Over 100 REALTORS® participated in the event. Sixteen teams were pitted against each other in competition to win the 2015 title. After a few hours of fun, pizza, and friendly competition, Team Muckle, including PGCAR Director Yolanda Muckle, soared to victory. Congratulations to the winners and thank you to all who participated and contributed!

2nd Annual PGCAR RPAC Bowling Challenge
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AT A GLANCE: EDUCATION HIGHLIGHTS AT PGCAR

Early bird registration is only $18 for 3 CEU classes and $11 for 1.5 CEU classes.
This Tuesday, April 14
Learn More Loans, Sell More Homes - Sold Out!
This Friday, April 17
MD Legislative Update - 3 MD Required Legislative Update CEU; 3 DC Elective CEU
MD Fair Housing - 1.5 MD Required Fair Housing CEU; 1.5 DC Elective CEU
Next Thursday, April 23
New Member Orientation
Future Class Coupons Given for 3 FREE MD Ethics CEU; 1.5 FREE MD Fair Housing CEU
FREE; Required; and for new PGCAR REALTORS® Only
Next Friday, April 24
MREC Agency - Residential - 3 MD Required or Elective CEU
Successfully Selling Government Owned Properties - 1.5 MD Elective CEU
Wednesday, April 29
MD Code of Ethics - 3 MD Required Ethics CEU; 3 DC Elective CEU
See the complete schedule and register at www.pgcar.com >
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FREE REALTOR® SAFETY WEBINAR
Tuesday, April 21 | 2 to 3 pm

REALTOR Safety Logo Learn to look at safety from the perspective of a law enforcement professional. Adrian Manzanares has more than 20 years of experience as an officer and criminal investigator. Now, he's a real estate broker and he'll share his years of knowledge with us, to teach us:
  • To identify possible dangers you may face during client meetings and on property showings
  • How a lack of situational awareness can compromise your personal safety
  • To understand the mind set and mental preparation necessary to ensure personal safety during daily activities
  • What a position of advantage is, how to use command presence and how to enact common safety practices in an effort to reduce the risk of compromising your personal safety
FREE and important ~ Register here >
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REALTOR® FEDERAL CREDIT UNION - IT'S FOR YOU!

Why Join REALTORS® FCU?
Just one of many reasons -- Save throughout the year with a Dues Savings Account -- then make future dues or other annual payments using your debit card.

Open a Dues Savings Account online >
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MAKING HOME AFFORDABLE (MHA) PROGRAM WEBINARS

There are sessions for MHA Trusted Advisors and MHA Servicers. Click here to see all scheduled classes. Click on Event Center tab if not immediately directed to webinar listing.

Upcoming sessions:

Wednesday, April 15, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
MHA Tools & Resources for Trusted Advisors

Monday, April 20, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program

Wednesday, May 13, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
MHA Base Net Present Value (NPV) Model v6.0
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CALLS FOR COMMITTEE VOLUNTEERS

MAR Applications Due Friday, May 1
MAR Committee descriptions and sign up are online at www.mdrealtor.org. Please volunteer for 2 or 3 committees of your choice; placements will be made according to qualifications and availability. Current MAR committee members must re-apply for 2015 - 2016 MAR Committee memberships.

2016 NAR Committee Recommendations Due Friday, May 22
NAR committee nominations are open as well (login required). Self-nominations are encouraged.
NAR Committee Details and Nomination Form >

PGCAR Committee Reminder
Most PGCAR Committees accept volunteers throughout the year. Consider getting involved -- there's sure to be a committee where you can apply your expertise, learn more, and develop your leadership skills -- all while making a difference!
PGCAR Committee Descriptions and Volunteer Form >
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MAR COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE SYMPOSIUM
Maryland - Open for Business! What It Means for Commercial Real Estate Practitioners

Thursday, May 7 | 8 am to 12:15 pm | Sheraton Annapolis Hotel | $35 registration

Learn what steps Maryland is taking to increase business opportunities in the State, what these increased opportunities can mean for the commercial real estate practitioner, what programs may already be available at the state and local level, the 2015 Legislative Session's impact on commercial real estate, and how you can assist your clients in accessing commercial opportunities.

Open to all Real Estate Practitioners, and worth 3 hours CE credit pending MREC approval.
Details and Registration >
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REALTORS® LEGISLATIVE MEETINGS & TRADE EXPO
Monday, May 11 - Saturday, May 16 in Washington, DC

The Annual REALTORS® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo is coming to our neighborhood in one month. Take advantage of the FREE meetings, training sessions, and the Trade Expo. The Expo is open Wednesday and Thursday, 10 am to 6 pm.

Registration is now open and FREE to REALTOR® members.
To see the most, register and plan your Convention Schedule in advance >.
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REALTOR® MAGAZINE SEEKS GOOD NEIGHBOR NOMINATIONS
Application Deadline is Friday, May 15

Five Winners will Receive $10,000 Grants and National Publicity

REALTOR® Magazine is seeking nominees for the 2015 Good Neighbor Awards. The program recognizes REALTORS® whose extraordinary commitment to community service has helped make their communities better places to live.

If a REALTOR® you know is putting forth the effort to make a difference in the community, help their cause by nominating them today!

Deadline for entry is Friday, May 15.
Click here for details, rules and an entry form.
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2015 MEMBERSHIP APPLICATIONS

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A WEALTH OF INFORMATION - 24 X 7! - Find important industry information, as well as details and registration for PGCAR Events and Classes - all at the PGCAR.com Events Calendar.
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- - - CONSUMER'S CORNER - - -
Great reasons to stay in touch! Share these with your customers.


$5K DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE TO PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY HOMEBUYERS;
Maryland Mortgage Program (MMP)'s DoublePlay

DHCD Logo The DoublePlay Program launched on March 4, is built upon several home buying incentives that make it easier to buy a first home. This includes a Down Payment loan, lower loan fees and lower interest rates. The Program is designed to be a sustainable, long-term County incentive program.

DoublePlay benefits to homebuyers include:
  • $5,000 down payment assistance, set up as a deferred loan with 0% interest. The original loan amount is only due upon sale, refinance or transfer of the property or when the first mortgage is paid in full (e.g., if you borrow $5,000 now to help with your down payment, you would only repay $5,000 whenever due - perhaps as far away as 30 years if that is how long you are making payments on the primary mortgage).
  • Fee reduction when applying for the Maryland HomeCredit Program, which can save tens of thousands of dollars over lifetime of your mortgage.
  • Mortgage Interest Rates for Prince Georges County properties will be set at .25% below regular Maryland Mortgage Program interest rates.
For more details on the DoublePlay program, click here >
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MARCH MADNESS BROUGHT BIG WINS TO HOME SALES TOO!
County Home Sales Surged More Quickly Than Our Spring Temperatures Did!

In the single family market: March contracts were up 16.6% from February 2015, and up 7.6% Year-to-Date. March settlements were up 30.7% from February, up 17.1% YTD.

In the condo & coops markets: March contracts were up 12.7% from February, and up 11.5% YTD. March settlements were up 44.2% from February, up 22.5% YTD.

WOW! See all the details at www.pgcar.com/stats >

To see Prince George's County home sales statistics as soon as they are released, like us at www.facebook.com/pgcar and visit www.pgcar.com/stats.

National Market News:
zipLogix Partners with REALTORS Property Resource® to Integrate Access
Pending Home Sales Rise in February Behind Solid Gains in Midwest, West
Vacation Home Sales Soar 57.4% to Record High in 2014, Investment Purchases Decrease 7.4%
HUD Secretary Tells REALTORS® FHA is Exploring Alternative Credit Scoring Models to Expand Mortgage Access
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MORTGAGE RATES MOVE DOWN AGAIN
30-Year Fixed Rates Below 4%; 15-Year Fixed Rates Below 3%

"Mortgage rates fell across the board following last week's disappointing employment report," said Ken Liefer, Freddie Mac's deputy chief economist. "The US economy added 126,000 new jobs in March, well below market expectations of 247,000 jobs. We did see some uptick in wages, as average hourly earnings increased 7 cents for the month, and are up 2.1 percent over the year. Meanwhile, jobless claims [PDF] fell sharply to 268,000 this week, much lower than market expectations of 285,000."

Freddie Mac reports the following averages for the week ending April 9, 2015:

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.66%, down from 3.70% ~ Last year: 4.34%
The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.93%, down from 2.98% ~ Last year: 3.38%
The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM averaged 2.92%, down from 2.97% ~ Last year: 3.10%
The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.46%, unchanged from last week ~ Last year: 2.41%

Freddie Mac's Weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey >

Like PGCAR at www.facebook.com/pgcar to see monthly home sales statistics and this week's mortgage rate report as soon as they are released!
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SHARE HOMEBUYER SAVINGS FROM PGCAR.COM

First-time homebuyers, homeowners buying again, Military homebuyers, teachers... There are real estate deals for everyone in Prince George's County. It's easy to find the right information and send links from www.pgcar.com >
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9200 Basil Court, Suite 400  |  Largo, MD 20774  |  Phone 301.306.7900  |  Fax 301.306.8273
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