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July 26, 2010

I N   T H I S   I S S U E . . .

to Learn More and Earn More!

GRI 200 Starts Next Wednesday, August 4
Sign up for the entire, 27 CE Series here!
(6 hrs Legislative Update and 21 hrs Elective CE )
  red arrow Module 201: Pricing Property & Appraisal - Wed, Aug 4
  red arrow Module 202: Contracts & Agency - Fri, Aug 6
  red arrow Module 203: Interpersonal Skills & Personal Assistants - Thur, Aug 12
  red arrow Module 204: Advanced Financing & Real Estate Investments - Fri, Aug 13
  red arrow Module 205: Condominiums, Cooperatives & Buyer Brokerage - Wed, Aug 18
Invest in your future.   Studies show that GRI educated agents earn over $33,000 more than REALTORS® without the GRI designation.
Now, that's a wise investment!

New Rules Regarding Teams and Groups

An article written by Al Monshower has been added to Members Only which thoroughly discusses the provisions of House Bill 406. The new law, taking effect on October 1, 2010, is quite expansive and creates duties and obligations with respect to the operation of teams or groups within a real estate brokerage company and imposes specific requirements of disclosure and document retention. These new requirements affect all team members and leaders, brokers and managers.

Please login for article >

SentriLock Lockboxes on Sale !!

This week only ~ at PGCAR
SentriLock Lockboxes are on sale for $85

Supplies are limited.

Sale ends This Friday, July 30
or when supplies are sold, whichever comes first.

2010 - 2011 Leadership Academy - Due Sunday

The annual MAR Leadership Academy is a rare opportunity for training in organizational leadership and communications. Applications for the upcoming October 14, 2010 through April 19, 2011 session are due August 1, 2010. Applicants must be available for interview on August 10 or 19.

Hurry! Applications are due August 1st.
Details and application >>


As election day approaches there are a number of organizations hosting candidate forums.
Listed are those events that span several districts, and feature a wide range of offices. Please take advantage of these opportunities to learn more about candidates running for political office in Prince George's County.

All listed forums are FREE and open to the public.

The Prince George's Chamber of Commerce
A Business Decision for Prince George's County

Candidate Forum - Councilmanic District 8
(Southern Prince George's County)

This Tuesday, July 27
5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Friendly High School Auditorium,
10000 Allentown Road, Fort Washington, MD 20744
RSVP Requested >

Candidate Forum - Councilmanic District 9
(Southern Prince George's County)

Next Thursday, August 5
5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Gwynn Park High School,
13800 Brandywine Road, Brandywine, MD 20613
RSVP Requested >

Candidate Forum - Councilmanic District 7
(Southern Prince George's County)

Tuesday, August 10
5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Suitland High School Auditorium,
5200 Silver Hill Road, Forestville, MD 20747
RSVP Requested >

Candidate Forum - Prince George's County Executive
Thursday, August 12
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Prince George's Community College Rennie Forum,
301 Largo Road, Largo, MD 20774
RSVP Requested >

Candidate Forum - Congressional District 4
(Prince George's & Montgomery Counties)

Tuesday, August 17
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Zealia Centre,
565 Ritchie Road, Capitol Heights, MD 20743
RSVP Requested >

For more information on above candidate forums,
please contact the Chamber office at 301-731-5000.

HOA Community Coalition

Prince George's County Executive and
Prince George's County Council, 6th Councilmanic District Forum

This Tuesday, July 27
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
MODERATOR: Mark Plotkin, Political Commentator and Analyst, WTOP Radio

Prince George's County State's Attorney and
Prince George's County Sheriff Forum

This Thursday, July 29
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
MODERATOR: W. Chris Stewart, CEO/President, Educational Dimensions, Inc.

WHERE: Reid Temple A.M.E.
11400 Glenn Dale Boulevard, Glenn Dale, MD 20769

Flyer >

Women's Action Coalition
of Prince George's County &
Prince George's Aging Advisory Committee

5th Annual Candidates Forum
for the Prince George's County Council & School Board
Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6

Monday, August 16
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Laurel High School Auditorium
8000 Cherry Lane, Laurel, MD 20707-3663

For More Information, Please Contact:
June White Dillard
Phone: 240-619-5418

If real estate is your profession, politics is your business.

Prince George's County NSP Down Payment on Your Dream Funding

The Expanded Down Payment on Your Dream program provides eligible borrowers with household income at or below 50% of the Area Median Income (AMI) up to $60,000 towards buying a foreclosure or a short sale in Prince George's County.

50% of the AMI is $36,250 for a household of one; $41,400 for a household of two. Please note the maximum eligible incomes have been increased slightly (adjusted for 2010) as of May 14.

Applicants can be First Time Homebuyers, or those who have not owned a home in 3 years or more.

The program for households at or below 50% of the area median income levels still has $1 Million in funding left and has closed almost 650 loans. More program requirements and benefit details are available in the updated NSP Alert >>

If you have any questions about either NSP program, don't hesitate to contact the NSP office.

Yetta Stokes
NSP Senior Loan Processor
  Rosalyn B. Clemens
NSP Program Manager


Maryland Drops CDA Rate to 4.5%, Sets Aside $100 Million
For Loans to BRAC Buyers
PGCAR REALTORS® participated in a press event in Laurel on Thursday, sponsored by the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development to announce that the Maryland Mortgage Program interest rate is being lowered to 4.5%.

L-R - Senator Jim Rosapepe, MAR President Steve Meszaros, Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, MBA CEO Kathleen Murphy, PGCAR President-Elect Joanne Darling (at podium) and DHCD Secretary Raymond Skinner.
MAR President Steve Meszaros, MD DHCD Secretary Raymond Skinner, Lt. Governor Anthony Brown (at podium) and PGCAR President-Elect Joanne Darling.

PGCAR President-Elect Joanne Darling joined Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, Maryland DHCD Secretary Raymond Skinner, State Senator Jim Rosapepe, MAR President Steve Meszaros and representatives of the Maryland Bankers Association in making the announcement.

In addition to lowering the state Community Development Administration (CDA) mortgage interest rate, $100 million of federal assistance bond money is being set aside for 4.5% mortgage loans in Prince George's County and nine other Maryland counties that will be impacted by the federal Base Realignment and Closing act (BRAC). Our neighbors Anne Arundel, Howard and Montgomery are also included. It is estimated that this set aside can be used for approximately 625 mortgages.

For detailed information on the Maryland Mortgage Program, CDA and Downpayment Assistance go to

See Full Press release >>

President's Message

Michael Cerrito, PGCAR President Prince George's County Legislators Are Key to Important
Real Estate Industry Legislation

Governor O'Malley recently signed four pieces of key real estate industry legislation that were introduced by Prince George's County Legislators. PGCAR President Mike Cerrito details this legislation, PGCAR's important role in advocacy, and gives us the information to contact and thank our elected officials for their key roles to advance homeownership and the economy of Prince George's County. Please take time to send a quick message of thanks.

Dental Insurance Plans at Exclusive REALTOR® Rates - New!

REALTORS® Dental Insurance has been custom-designed to offer affordable and valuable large group Dental insurance benefits to NAR members and their families nationwide. Plans provide coverage for preventive, basic, and major dental expenses with the dentist of your choice. There are 4 plans to choose from, and most plans include bonus benefits like orthodontia, cosmetic, dental rewards, and more. The plans are available today in Maryland, DC and surrounding states.

Market Sen$e: Mortgage Interest Rates Fall Again

30-year and 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averages fell to yet another set of record lows for the week ending July 22, according to Freddie Mac.

  • The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.56 percent, down from 4.57 percent a week ago.
  • The 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.03 percent, down from 4.06 percent.
  • The five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM average fell to 3.79 percent.
  • The one-year Treasury-indexed ARM average fell to a new six-year-low of 3.70 percent.

2010 Weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey >>

For local market statistics, visit REALTOR® Resources >>. The number of Prince George's County listings, contracts and settlements all increased from May to June, for both single-family and condominium home sales. 2010 year-to-date County home contracts and settlements have improved significantly from 2009 levels.

International Interest in U.S Homeownership Increases
International home buyers are increasingly attracted to property in the U.S., according to the National Association of REALTORS®' 2010 Profile of International Home Buying Activity released July 7. Several factors, including the strength of the dollar, the value and desirability of U.S. real estate, and the emerging economic recovery, continue to drive international interest in owning a home in this country.

"The U.S. continues to be a top destination for international buyers from all over the world," states NAR President Vicki Cox Golder. "Foreign buyers understand the value of owning a home in this country and can rely on REALTORS® to help guide them through the complex process of buying property in the U.S. With expertise, knowledge and experience, REALTORS® have a global perspective."

Complete article >>
Additional International Real Estate Research >>

PGCAR 2011 Dues

Invoices for PGCAR 2011 Dues in the Amount of $503 will be mailed and available online next week. Dues are due and payable on October 1, 2010. A late fee will be charged after November 30th. If you choose, you may pay your dues in four installments as follows:

August 31 $125.75
September 30 $125.75
October 31 $125.75
November 30 $125.75

Thank you for your prompt payment of these fees.

Take the Quiz: Image and Etiquette

REALTORS® are constantly in the public eye, and it's important to keep a professional image and use proper business etiquette.

Take this short quiz to help fine-tune your public image.


$35,000 in Closing Cost and Down Payment Assistance

Settlement Deadline Extended to September 30!
$6,500 / $8,000 Homebuyer Tax Credit
- For all buyers who entered a binding contract for a new or replacement principal residence by April 30, 2010, now is the time to help ensure they can meet the settlement deadline of September 30. Approximately 180,000 homebuyers with ratified contracts were not able to meet the previous June 30 settlement deadline, but will now have until September 30 to close. Don't allow this opportunity to slip by!

Information on the Homebuyer Tax Credit and other homebuyer savings are available at You can also send links to your contacts from these public information pages. NAR President Vicki Cox Golder singled out House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and 6 other Congressional members for their efforts to extend the tax credit closing deadline.

2011 Extension for qualified Armed Services members - The First Time Home Buyer Tax credit is valid for an additional year for members of our military, intelligence and foreign services who were out of the United States on active duty between January 1, 2009 and April 30, 2010 for at least 90 days. They have until April 30, 2011 to have a house under contract and until June 30, 2011 to close. details >>

Visit for details on other national, state, county and township programs which SAVE HOMEBUYERS MONEY.

Mortgage rates are at another all-time low -
It's a great time to buy in Prince George's County!


Prince George's County Habitat for Humanity is in need of funds to finish a home in Capitol Heights.

Please click here to contribute. Any amount will help put a family into a home.

You may also mail a check, payable to Habitat for Humanity to:
8400 Corporate Drive, Suite 225
Landover MD 20785

Thank you for your generosity!



Earn ALL of your required Continuing Education hours for Maryland and DC license renewals -- and your GRI -- here at PGCAR.

GRI 200 Series Begins August 4
GRI 200 Full Series
6 MD Required Legislative Update and 21 MD Elective CEU
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm
GRI 200 Series - Module 201:
Pricing Property & Appraisal

6 Elective CEU, MD
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Next Friday, August 6
GRI 200 Series - Module 202:
Contracts & Agency

3 MD Legislative Update & 3 MD Elective CEU
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Monday, August 9
MD Legislative Update
3 MD Required Legislative Update CEU; 3 DC Elective CEU
Don Martin 9:30 am - 12:30 pm
MD Fair Housing
1.5 MD Required Fair Housing CEU; 1.5 DC Elective CEU
Don Martin 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

Thursday, August 12
GRI 200 Series - Module 203:
Interpersonal Skills & Personal Assistants

3 Elective CEU, MD
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Friday, August 13
GRI 200 Series - Module 204:
Advanced Financing & Real Estate Investments

6 Elective CEU, MD
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Wednesday, August 18
GRI 200 Series - Module 205:
Condominiums, Cooperatives & Buyer Brokerage

3 MD Legislative Update and 3 MD Elective CE
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Thursday, August 26
MD Code of Ethics
3 MD Required Ethics CEU;
3 DC Elective CEU
Don Martin 9:30 am - 12:30 pm

GRI 300 Series Begins November 3
GRI 300 Full Series
13.5 MD Required Legislative Update and 12 MD Elective CEU
various 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Full CEU Schedule >>


Code of Ethics Case Study: Case #8-1:
Failure to Put Deposit in Separate Account

REALTOR® A, a listing broker, obtained a signed offer to purchase, together with Buyer C's check for $5,000 as an earnest money deposit. Buyer C's offer was subject to the sale of his current residence. REALTOR® A presented the offer to Seller B who accepted it. REALTOR® A then inadvertently deposited the earnest money check in his personal checking account. Since Buyer C's offer was contingent on the sale of his current home, Seller B's house remained on the market. A week later, REALTOR® A received another offer to purchase Seller B's house from another broker and presented it to the seller as a back-up offer. Buyer C was informed about this new offer and reluctantly concluded that he would be unable to waive the sale contingency or proceed with the purchase of Seller B's house. He then asked REALTOR® A for his $5,000 check back. REALTOR® A explained that he had mistakenly deposited Buyer C's check in his personal bank account which had been attached since he received Buyer C's offer, and he was temporarily unable to refund the deposit to Buyer C.

Buyer C filed a complaint with the Board of REALTORS®, which was received by the Grievance Committee. The Grievance Committee concluded that the complaint warranted a hearing and referred it to the Professional Standards Committee. At hearing, REALTOR® A explained that his bank account had been unexpectedly attached following the loss of a civil suit which he was appealing; that his deposit of Buyer C's check in his personal account was a simple error in handling deposit slips; that he was arranging for the prompt release of his account; and that everything would be straightened out in three or four days, which should not be of great inconvenience to Buyer C.

Based on your understanding of the Code of Ethics Article 8, how do you think the Professional Standards Panel ruled?

Find out here >>

Prince George's County Association of REALTORS®
8400 Corporate Drive  :  Suite 225 : Landover MD 20785
Phone 301-306-7900  :  Fax 301-306-8273  :  :  ©2010, PGCAR

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