|PGCAR wants, and needs your involvement in your local Association. Through PGCAR's many committees you can play a major part in the leadership of our Association, as well as helping to promote the efforts and positive contributions which PGCAR members make throughout the communities in Prince George's County.
When you VOLUNTEER to serve on one of the many PGCAR Committees, you will be providing vital experience and input which will make a strong impact on our Association now and in the future.
By working hand-in-hand with your fellow REALTORS® and PGCAR Affiliates, you can SHARE your knowledge, LEARN the talents of others, MEET your peers from other companies, and HELP guide our Association toward the goal of becoming the best in the State of Maryland.
ALL members are encouraged to serve on Association committees.
Committee Members will serve from October 1, 2008 to September 30, 2009.
Forms must be received by THIS FRIDAY, AUGUST 1st.
Sign-Up Here >>
|THE SENTRILOCK SYSTEM IS COMING NOV 10|
The Prince George's County Association of REALTORS® will begin its conversion from SUPRA to SentriLock on November 10th.
The following associations have ALREADY converted to the new SentriLock lockbox system:
|Anne Arundel County
If you are showing property in any of these areas, you have two options for opening a SentriLock box
that may be on the listing:
- Call the listing agent to get a one-day showing code. The code is specific to the box, so if you are showing multiple properties, you will need a separate code for each box.
- Get a SentriLock access card from PGCAR. REALTORS® in good standing (i.e. have paid their 2008 dues) can get a SentriLock access card from PGCAR on any weekday between 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.
The cost is $155 which covers the fee from now until November 2009. PGCAR cannot issue boxes at this time, so for now, SentriLock boxes will have to be acquired from the Association in the area where you have a listing.
|NEW SAFEMLS TOKEN WILL ARRIVE IN MAIL
Clareity Security (MRIS's token provider) and Secure Computing (the token manufacturer) have acknowledged a manufacturing issue with existing tokens that is causing a higher than expected failure rate. To provide MRIS customers with the most reliable device to protect MLS content, MRIS subscribers are being sent replacement tokens - the newest and most upgraded model - at the subscribers' home mailing addresses that MRIS has on file.
The new, smaller token clips onto keychains, purses, or belt loops, and features a clearer display. It is all numeric, eliminating confusion between letters and numbers which look similar. The new token works just like the old one - just press a button to retrieve the next password.
You should receive your new token in the next few days.
When you receive your new token, the package will include activation instructions. Please take a minute to register and activate your new token. Once your new token is activated, you can dispose of the old token - there's no need to send it back. Even if your current one functions properly, still register your new token to avoid any future token failure.
If you have reported a lost or broken token in the last month, you have already received the newer model. No further action will be necessary on your part.
Thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation!
Any questions, please call MRIS at 301 838-7100.
|SWEEPING HOUSING RELIEF BILL SENT TO PRESIDENT BUSH|
This Saturday, July 26, Congress sent President Bush legislation which is designed to help homeowners avoid foreclosure, spur home buying, and prop up struggling mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The president intends to sign the bill as soon as he receives it.
Read more >>
The "Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008," passed the House on July 23rd by a vote of 272-152. Key provisions of the bill passed by the House and expected to also be included in the final Senate legislation awaiting signature by the President are as follows:
- GSE Reform - including a strong independent regulator, and permanent conforming loan limits up to the greater of $417,000 or 115% local area median home price, capped at $625,500. The effective date for reforms is immediate upon enactment, but the loan limits will not go into effect until the expiration of the Economic Stimulus limits (December 31, 2008).
- FHA Reform - including permanent FHA loan limits at the greater of $271,050 or 115% of local area median home price, capped at $625,500; streamlined processing for FHA condos; reforms to the HECM program, and reforms to the FHA manufactured housing program. The effective date for reforms is immediate upon enactment, but the loan limits will not go into effect until the expiration of the Economic Stimulus limits (December 31, 2008).
- Homebuyer Tax Credit - a $7500 tax credit that would be would be available for any qualified purchase between April 8, 2008 and June 30, 2009. The credit is repayable over 15 years (making it, in effect, an interest free loan).
- FHA foreclosure rescue - development of a refinance program for homebuyers with problematic subprime loans. Lenders would write down qualified mortgages to 85% of the current appraised value and qualified borrowers would get a new FHA 30-year fixed mortgage at 90% of appraised value. Borrowers would have to share 50% of all future appreciation with FHA. The loan limit for this program is $550,440 nationwide. Program is effective on October 1, 2008.
- Seller-funded downpayment assistance programs - codifies existing FHA proposal to prohibit the use of downpayment assistance programs funded by those who have a financial interest in the sale; does not prohibit other assistance programs provided by nonprofits funded by other sources, churches, employers, or family members. This prohibition goes into effect October 1, 2008.
- VA loan limits - temporarily increases the VA home loan guarantee loan limits to the same level as the Economic Stimulus limits through December 31, 2008.
- Risk-based pricing - puts a moratorium on FHA using risk-based pricing for one year. This provision will be effective from October 1, 2008 through September 30, 2009.
- GSE Stabilization - includes language proposed by the Treasury Department to authorize the Treasury to make loans to and buy stock from the GSEs to make sure that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae remain solvent.
- Mortgage Revenue Bond Authority - authorizes $10 billion in mortgage revenue bonds for refinancing subprime mortgages.
- National Affordable Housing Trust Fund - Develops a Trust Fund funded by a percentage of profits from the GSEs. In its first years, the Trust Fund would cover costs of any defaulted loans in FHA foreclosure program. In out years, the Trust Fund would be used for the development of affordable housing.
- CDBG Funding - Provides $4 billion in neighborhood revitalization funds for communities to purchase foreclosed homes.
- LIHTC - Modernizes the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program to make it more efficient.
- Loan Originator Requirements - Strengthens the existing state-run nationwide mortgage originator licensing and registration system (and requires a parallel HUD system for states that fail to participate). Federal bank regulators will establish a parallel registration system for FDIC-insured banks. The purpose is to prevent fraud and require minimum licensing and education requirements. The bill exempts those who only perform real estate brokerage activities and are licensed or registered by a state, unless they are compensated by a lender, mortgage broker, or other loan originator.
Through the NAR REALTOR® Action Center, more than 90,000 REALTORS® contacted the US Senate to urge passage of the Housing Bill. It is believed that none of this would have been possible without members mobilizing in support of this crucial housing legislation. THANK YOU FOR MAKING A DIFFERENCE!
|IRS GAS MILEAGE ALLOWANCE INCREASES|
The Internal Revenue Service, in acknowledgement of the steep price increases in gasoline in recent months, has readjusted its annual mileage rates to 58.5 cents per mile in calculating the costs of operating a vehicle for business purposes. Last November, IRS set the 2008 rate at 50.5 cents per mile. This rate is typically used by businesses for reimbursing employees who use their own cars and the new rate is effective July 1 through December 31, 2008. The IRS has increased mileage rates, also effective July 1, for medical and moving expenses from 19 cents per mile to 27 cents. The rate for charitable purposes remains at 14 cents per mile.
For more information, check www.irs.gov.
|WHO WILL BE MARYLAND'S RPAC IDOL?
Find out at MAR's RPAC Shark Attack Party!
Sunday, September 7, 2008 from 7-10 pm
At Castaway's in Ocean City.
$20 per ticket
Price includes 2 drinks, appetizers, and one Idol vote.
Additional votes are $1 apiece.
Vote early and vote often for your favorite Idol !!!
Call Kimberly Amos of MAR for reservations at 800-638-6425.
Click here for a flyer to share!
||Save the Date for our:
Join the festivities for this landmark celebration.
September 25th at 6 p.m. at La Fontaine Bleu
|APPLY FOR ANNUAL LEADERSHIP ACADEMY THIS WEEK|
Through this Friday only, the Maryland Association of REALTORS® is accepting applications for its outstanding Leadership Academy.
Don't miss this valuable opportunity to learn and grow in your professional and personal development. It won't come again until a full year from now. For more on the mission and goals of the Leadership Academy, Click Here.
Leadership Academy Applications Are Due This Friday, August 1
Click here for the application!.
|ORLANDO NOVEMBER 7-10 2008|
SAVE BIG! Register for the 2008 REALTORS® Conference & Expo
at early bird rates by August 15!
Recharge for success and refuel with new ideas at the 2008 REALTORS® Conference & Expo.
- 4 days of intensive training with Lance Armstrong, Joe Theismann & other top achievers who will share their success stories with you!
- Broker, sales agent, commercial, IT, International, entrepreneurial excellence,
customer service, property management - 200 programs to fit your needs!
- Over 700 exhibitors so you can shop, compare and save on the best fit for you.
- Sunday night at Universal Studios, with Kool & The Gang.
- Six hotels priced at $99 or less.
Details and registration now online at www.realtor.org!
Click here to register
|MAR CONFERENCE AND TRADE SHOW|
September 8-10 , 2008 in Ocean City, MD
Register for "One America" with Terry Watson, for Real Estate Commission Updates from Katherine Connelly (Executive Director, MD Real Estate Commission), or Negotiating in Challenging Times presented by Frank Serio.
NEW TIME - Tuesday's General Session at 8:30 AM with FEATURED KEYNOTE Shep Hyken. Don't miss the opportunity to win $500 cash. Bring your business card for the drawing during the session. Also join the Exhibitors on Tuesday for a NEW "LIGHT" lunch in the Exhibit Hall! And don't miss the Exhibit Hall Brunch on Wednesday either - where a "Grander" Grand Prize will be awarded. You must register by August 1 and be present to win.
For more on the Conference, Click Here >>
Earn ALL of your required Continuing Education hours for Maryland and DC license renewals -- and your GRI -- here at PGCAR. In relevant topics which are kept current for TODAY's Real Estate Market. Don't miss this summer's special offerings!
Did you know? The quadrennial requirement to complete an Ethics training course approved by the National Association of REALTORS® is coming due December 31, 2008. The MD Code of Ethics course taught at PGCAR fulfills this NAR requirement.
Code of Ethics Case Study: Case #15-2:
Intentional Misrepresentation of a Competitor's Business Practice
Following a round of golf early one morning, Homeowner A approached REALTOR® X. "We've outgrown our home and I want to list it with you," said Homeowner A. "I'm sorry," said REALTOR® X, "but I represent buyers exclusively." "Then how about REALTOR® Z?" asked Homeowner A, "I've heard good things about him." "I don't know if I would do that," said REALTOR® X, "while he does represent sellers, he doesn't cooperate with buyer brokers and, as a result, sellers don't get adequate market exposure for their properties."
Later that day, Homeowner A repeated REALTOR® X's remarks to his wife who happened to be a close friend of REALTOR® Z's wife. Within hours, REALTOR® Z had been made aware of REALTOR® X's remarks to Homeowner A earlier in the day. REALTOR® Z filed a complaint against REALTOR® X charging him with making false and misleading statements. REALTOR® Z's complaint was considered by the Grievance Committee, which determined that an ethics hearing should be held.
At the hearing REALTOR® Z stated, "I have no idea what REALTOR® X was thinking about when he made his comments to Homeowner A. I always cooperate with other REALTORS®." REALTOR® X replied, "That's not so. Last year you had a listing in the Multiple Listing Service and when I called to make an appointment to show the property to the buyer, you refused to agree to pay me." REALTOR® Z responded that he had made a formal offer of subagency through the MLS with respect to that property but had chosen not to offer compensation to buyer agents through the MLS. He noted, however, that the fact that he had not made a blanket offer of compensation to buyer agents should not be construed as a refusal to cooperate and that he had, in fact, cooperated with REALTOR® X in the sale of that very property.
In response to REALTOR® Z's questions, REALTOR® X acknowledged that he had shown his buyer-client REALTOR® Z's listing and that the buyer had purchased the property. Moreover, REALTOR® X said, upon questioning by the panel members, he had no personal knowledge of any instance in which REALTOR® Z had refused to cooperate with any other broker but had simply assumed that REALTOR® Z's refusal to pay the compensation REALTOR® X had asked for was representative of a general practice on the part of REALTOR® Z.
Based on your understanding of the Code of Ethics Article 15, how do you think the Professional Standards Panel ruled?
Find out here >>
|2009 PGCAR DUES|
The Board of Directors has voted to allow 2009 dues to be paid in installments. The 2009 dues will be billed on August 1st and are payable no later than November 30th in order to prevent late charges. The installment payments will be due as follows:
(includes voluntary RPAC contribution of $35)
(does not include voluntary RPAC contribution of $35)
|August 15 - $205
Sept. 15 - $114
Oct. 15 - $114
Nov. 15 - $113
|August 15 - $205
Sept. 15 - $102
Oct. 15 - $102
Nov. 15 - $102
Dues payment will also be available online this Friday, August 1, at or before the end of business. Paying online allows streamlined processing and confirms your payment as soon as accepted and emails you a receipt for your dues payment.
BE IN THE SPOTLIGHT FOR FREE!
That's right. Write an article that would be of interest to real estate consumers and submit it to Karey Major for a chance to be published in the Official Homes Section of The Prince George's County Association of REALTORS®, brought to you by The Gazette. This is a special pullout FULL COLOR supplement reaching over 127,000 homes and businesses in Prince George's County.
If you are interested in writing an article or placing an ad, please contact
Karey Major at 240-473-7588 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
|SALES COACH: THE MODERN DAY OPEN HOUSE|
A high-tech approach to open houses can increase your listing's exposure to prospective buyers and make your efforts more successful.
John F. Kennedy once said: "Change is the law of life, and those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future." Many tech-savvy real estate professionals are taking this wisdom to heart as it relates to open houses.
Find tips to add more value to your open house >>