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August 20, 2012

    I n   t h i s   i s s u e . . .
  • Committee Volunteer Deadline
        Extended through Today!
  • PGCAR 2013 Membership Renewal
        Now Available Online
  • PGCAR Installation of Officers and Directors
  • 2013 Board of Directors and Officer Candidates
  • Sign Up for GRI 300
  • 2012 MAR Annual Conference
  • NAR Annual Conference
  • Huge SentriLock Sale
  • Labor Day - Monday, September 3
    Homeownership Matters
  • Homebuyer Incentives in Prince George's County
  • Consumer Tip: Track Home Improvement Costs
        - Keep tax savings from being lost
    The Industry Insider
  • Legislative Alert: Utility Cost Disclosure &
        Carbon Monoxide Detector Installation
  • Contracts Reminder: Form 1320 Updated
  • Market Sen$e:
        Fixed Mortgage Rates Move Higher
  • Home Sales Statistics Available Online
  • Second Quarter Metro Area Home Prices Rise:
        Other Markets to Follow
  • Complete Code of Ethics Training by Aug. 31
  • DC and MD CEU
  • Sales Coach: Juggling Work and Family
  • Code of Ethics: #12-7
  • FCU: Benefits for your Business
  • Free Hands-On MRIS Tools Training

    PGCAR Committee Volunteer Deadline Extended Through Today
    Sign Up to Help PGCAR, Your Community, and Your Career!

    All PGCAR members are invited and encouraged to join a committee.

    Through PGCAR's many committees you have the opportunity to play a major part in the leadership, the legislative and community activities of our Association, or promoting the positive contributions PGCAR members make throughout Prince George's County communities. But hurry! The extended deadline to volunteer ends today.

    Click here to sign up >>

    Interested in being a future Board of Directors Candidate? Volunteering for a committee is your first step toward qualifying to become a Director.


    PGCAR 2013 Membership Renewal
    Now Available Online

    Invoices for PGCAR 2013 Dues in the amount of $636 have been mailed and are now available online. Dues are due and payable on October 1, 2012. A late fee will be charged after November 30. Association dues are as follows:

    PGCAR Dues $300
    MAR Dues $181
    NAR Dues $155
    Optional RPAC Contribution $35
    Optional Maclin Scholarship Fund Contribution $5

    Thank you for being a part of PGCAR!

    Visit to renew now.


    Installation Coming to New Venue
    Register Online Today!

    Reception: 11:30 am Dress: Business Attire
    Lunch: 12 noon Tickets: $35 per person

    New Venue! Camelot
    13905 Central Avenue
    Upper Marlboro, MD 20774

    Registration closes at midnight Tuesday, September 18.


    2013 Board of Directors and Officer Candidates
    Voting Begins September 1

    PGCAR is pleased to announce the following candidates for the 2012 - 2013 PGCAR Board of Directors. From September 1 to noon on September 19, you are encouraged to go to the PGCAR website at to vote online.

    The 2012 / 2013 Candidates
    President: Anthony Williams, Long & Foster Real Estate
    President-Elect: John Lesniewski, RE/MAX United Real Estate
    Secretary: Desiree Callender, Desiree Callender & Associates
    Directors (4 to be elected): Cheryl Abrams, RE/MAX Specialists
    Sonatta Camara, Camara & Co - The Real Estate Group
    Claudette Davis, Keller Williams Preferred Properties
    Donald Frederick, RE/MAX United Real Estate
    J. Marshall Hand, Long & Foster Real Estate
    Yolanda Muckle, Long & Foster Real Estate
    Melvin Pitt, RE/MAX Specialists
    Willie Rhone, Weichert, REALTORS®
    William Wells, RE/MAX Professionals

    GRI 300 Starts Wednesday, October 3
    Sign up for the full series of 5 classes here!

    Need a few make-up classes?
    Sign up for individual classes by clicking class titles below.

      red arrow Module 301: Environmental / Health Issues Affecting Real Estate - Wed, Oct 3
      red arrow Module 302: Taxes - Wed, Oct 10
      red arrow Module 303: Ethics & Mediation and Arbitration - Mon, Oct 15
      red arrow Module 304: Legislative Update & Smart Growth and Land Planning - Thurs, Oct 18
      red arrow Module 305: Real Estate Technology & Trends - Wed, Oct 24


    2012 MAR Annual Conference & Trade Show
    Kick Off the Conference Sunday the 9th with RPAC!


    Come Ride the Wave with your fellow REALTORS® at the Maryland Association of
    REALTORS® Conference and Expo in Ocean City. Take part in a schedule
    packed with great events and networking opportunities including:

    Three Days of CE Classes    Exciting Trade Show    Sunday Golf Tournament
    National Speakers    Cocktail Parties    Industry Awards
    Recognition Banquet Installation

    Register Here    Conference Homepage    Hotel Information (PDF)    Schedule (PDF)

    All MAR members and affiliates are invited to join RPAC at the Galaxy 66 Bar & Grille
    on Sunday, September 9, from 6 to 8 pm.

    $25 - Advanced Online Purchase (before 8/31)    $35 - At the Door
    RPAC Major Investors Get Two Tickets for FREE!

    Details & Registration Instructions >>


    NAR 2012 Annual Conference
    Sign Up to Join Us in Orlando!

    November 9 - November 12
    Register online As Soon As Possible to secure your place at the NAR 2012 Annual Conference.
    Also book your hotel in advance for best selection.


    Huge SentriLock Lockbox Sale
    Lockbox Sale Continues

    Back by popular demand PGCAR is pleased to announce the continuation of the sale on SentriLock Lockboxes. Lockboxes will be sold as follows:
    • 1 to 9 Lockboxes are $65 each + tax
    • 10 to 19 Lockboxes are $60 each + tax
    • 20 to 29 Lockboxes are $55 each + tax
    • 30 Lockboxes or more are $50 each + tax
    Also, SentriLock has lowered the cost of power paddles to $55 for a limited time. Power paddles must be ordered through PGCAR. If you would like to purchase one or more at this reduced price, please contact Shirley at the Association office.

    1. Maryland Homefront: The Veterans and Military Family Program
      Historically low reduced interest rates starting at 2.875% (APR 3.675%) and increased payment assistance for qualified current and former military members. Program Details >>
    2. $30 Million Targeted Areas Initiative for Homebuyers
      First-Time Homebuyers Can Gain Same Benefits in ANY Prince George's County Area

      Reduced interest rates starting at 2.875% (APR 3.675%) for qualified homebuyers purchasing a new primary residence. Program Details >>
    3. Buy Suitland Initiative - NOW in 11 Census Tracts (4 Areas Newly Added)!
      Up to 5% of home purchase price to first-time homebuyers; Up to 7% for local civic employees. Program Details >>
    4. Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta (FHLB Atlanta)
      Up to $15,000 towards a foreclosure purchase; Up to $7,500 toward the purchase of a property located in area approved for NSP funds.
      Program Details >>   Details & webinars for REALTORS® >>
    5. American Dream Downpayment Assistance (ADDI)
      Up to $10,000 to County Homebuyers who have not owned a home within the last 3 years.
      Program Details >>
    6. My HOME
      Up to 5% of the home sale price to qualified homebuyers who have not owned a home within the last 3 years.
      Program Details >>   County My HOME Website >>
    7. Centex Adds Savings to My HOME Program
      Purchase a Centex Home in the Victory Promenade development with My HOME funds and receive seller assistance also. For more information call (301) 350-5875 or email Jennifer Eaddy.
    8. Freddie Mac HomeSteps SmartBuySM
      Offers up to $500 for purchase of a home warranty.
      Home listings and incentive details >>   Sign up for buyer leads >>

    Most of these programs can be used in combination. Information on these and other homebuyer savings are available at For more My HOME program details, members can login to Members Only.


    Consumer Tip: Track Home Improvement Costs
    Keep Tax Savings From Being Lost

    Making improvements to your home not only increases the value of your house, it can also knock a chunk off your tax bill if you ever sell.

    It's well known that big projects like remodeling the kitchen or finishing the basement can pay off, but many don't realize keeping tabs on all that work is also important to recouping the cost of the investment.

    Since tax law allows you to add capital improvement expenses to the cost basis of your home, you can show a lower total profit - technically a capital gain - to the IRS by including them when you sell.

    A lower capital gain on the sale means a lower tax.

    This won't affect everyone, as most home owners are exempt from tax on the first $250,000 of profit for single filers, or double that for joint filers. But if you have lived in your home a long time, or plan to make lots of significant upgrades, those receipts can certainly add up.

    What counts and what doesn't?

    While you might think painting is a big deal, the government doesn't consider all the work you do on your home to be an improvement. A simple way to think about it is that a capital improvement adds some new value to your home, while an ineligible project simply returns something to its original state.

    For example, adding a wrap-around porch would be eligible. Tearing off tacky wallpaper and painting the walls would not be eligible.

    Other work can bring more subtle distinctions -such as figuring out the difference between roof repairs and replacements when the job is a big one.

    The biggest exception to these rules: when a home has been damaged by fire or natural disaster. Then replacement projects usually count as capital improvement.

    Read more at >>

    Utility Cost Disclosure & CO Detector Installation

    REALTORS® transacting business in Prince George's County Maryland should be aware of two recently enacted laws effecting property transfers. We encourage you to share this information with your sales team.

    CB 25 - Utility Cost Disclosure and Home Energy Audits
    Beginning on September 17, 2012, sellers of certain residential properties will be required to disclose the prior 12 month energy consumption history resulting from electric, gas and oil heating/power consumption.

    CB 34 - Carbon Monoxide Detectors in County Residences
    CB 34, also effective on September 17, 2012, requires the installation of battery powered, UL listed carbon monoxide (CO) detectors in residential one and two family dwellings with gas heating systems, fuel burning appliances and/or with an attached garage. The law requires the seller or transferor to install carbon monoxide detectors at, or prior to, transfer of ownership.

    For more details on both laws, read the
    Legislative Newsletter >>


    Reminder: Form 1320 has been Updated
    Seller's Estimated Settlement Expense and other forms available online

    Form 1320 Estimated Settlement Expense - Seller was revised in July and is now available at Members Only and ZipForm. Please destroy all older versions of Form PG 1320 and begin using the updated form immediately. The July 2012 revision includes the new Prince George's County and Maryland transfer taxes and recordation charges among other changes.

    All eight forms either added or revised in June or July, are now also available at ZipForm. Visit PGCAR Members Only to download the latest forms, and to sign up for ZipForm. ZipForm is a FREE benefit for PGCAR members!


    Market Sen$e: Fixed Mortgage Rates Move Higher For Third Consecutive Week

    Results released last Thursday, August 16, show that average mortgage rates for the 30-year and 15-year fixed rate as well as the 1-year ARM rose last week. Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist of Freddie Mac, said "the latest economic indicators point toward low inflation but gradually stronger economic activity which placed further upward pressure on long-term Treasury yields and, in turn, fixed mortgage rates. For example, inflation remains in check with 12-month growth in the core consumer price index falling for a second month to 2.1 percent in July. At the same time, industrial production rose 0.6 percent in July compared to a 0.1 percent increase in June and retail sales jumped 0.8 percent in July from a 0.7 percent decline in June."

    Freddie Mac reports the following averages for the week ending August 2, 2012:

    • The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.62%, up from 3.59%.
    • The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.88%, up from 2.84%.
    • The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM averaged 2.76%, down from 2.77%.
    • The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.69%, up from 2.65%.
    Freddie Mac's Weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey >>


    Detailed Home Sales Statistics for Prince George's County
    Available online, announced on PGCAR Facebook

    My HOME Program

    Just a reminder that detailed statistics for July 2012 are available at >>

    Like us on facebook to be the first to see the next release of home sales statistics. While you're there, add yourself to the Find a REALTOR® Directory to give homebuyers and sellers yet another way to find you.


    Second Quarter Metro Area Home Prices Rise
    Limited Inventory Capping Sales

    Median existing single-family home prices are on the rise in many metropolitan areas, but a lack of inventory, notably in lower price ranges, is limiting buyer choices in many parts of the country, according to the latest quarterly report by the National Association of REALTORS®.

    NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said home prices are set to rise in even more markets.

    "It's most encouraging to see a growing number of metro areas with rising median prices, which is improving the equity position of existing homeowners. Inventory has been trending down and home builders are still under-producing in relation to growing demand," he said. "Some of the improvement in prices is due to a smaller share of sales in low price ranges where inventory is tight."

    Read more at >>


    Complete the Code of Ethics Training by August 31
    Get a chance to win an Apple iPad 3!

    In order to enter the Know Your Ethics Sweepstakes, you need to complete one of two NAR Code of Ethics online training programs, for new members of the association or for existing members, by August 31, and you'll automatically be entered to win. The winner will be notified by phone, mail, or e-mail.

    Take the training now >>


    Earn All MD and DC Required CEU at PGCAR

    All classes are held at PGCAR offices, just off the Route 202 / Landover Road exit of I-495. Find our NEW association office at 9200 Basil Court, Suite 400, Largo, MD 20774. There's plenty of parking.

    This Thursday, August 23
    MREC Agency-Residential
    3 MD Required or Elective CEU
    Fredericka Lloyd 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm

    Friday, August 24
    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, September 6
    How to Handle Settlements
    3 MD Elective CEU
    Jill Michaels 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm

    Thursday, September 13
    Understanding Credit Reports & How to Improve Your Credit
    3 MD Elective CEU
    Michael Chelst 9:30 am - 12:30 pm
    Reverse Mortgages
    1.5 MD Elective CEU
    Eric Rittmeyer 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

    Monday, September 17
    DC Fair Housing & Predatory Lending
    3 DC Required Fair Housing CEU; no MD CEU
    Prabhjit Singh 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm

    Wednesday, September 19
    Financing Issues / Update
    3 DC Required Financing Issues / Update CEU
    Michael Chelst 9:30 am - 12:30 pm

    Friday, September 21
    MD Legislative Update
    3.0 MD Required Legislative Update CEU
    3.0 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

    Monday, September 24
    Short Sales
    3.0 MD Elective CEU
    Jill Pogach Michaels 2:30 pm - 5:30 pm

    Thursday, September 27
    MD Code of Ethics
    3 MD Required Ethics CEU
    3 DC Elective CEU
    Don Martin 9:30 am - 12:30 pm

    Starting Wednesday, October 3
    GRI 300 Series Begins
    13.5 MD Legislative Update CEU
    and 12 MD Elective CEU
      8:30 am - 4:00 pm

    Complete CEU Schedule >>


    Sales Coach: Juggling Work and Family
    Simple Tips for Finding Balance

    Home Sales Coach It can be difficult juggling the demands of work and family life, but attaining the proper balance will let you bring your best to both worlds.

    As anyone who has been in real estate for even a short period knows, time can get away from you quickly when you're working. Even though it can be tempting to dedicate as many hours as possible to the job, setting aside time for your family is important to the sustainability of a long and profitable career. Whether you're new to real estate or you've been in the profession for years, it doesn't take long to find out how the hours accumulate: showings, listing appointments, presentations, prospecting, fielding calls, attending meetings …the list goes on.

    But balancing all the demands of family and business is essential if you want to keep up the quality of your work long-term. Here are some tips on the subject from broker John Mayfield, who has been in the business for over 30 years.

    1. Put your family first. Simply put, family is your No. 1 priority. Start losing this stable base and many will find they also lose the motivation and attitude that makes for a successful professional life.
    2. It's your schedule - not your clients'. This is where real estate has an advantage over some other professions. Your hours are somewhat flexible; don't be afraid to work around a family commitment. Most clients and customers will be happy to schedule around whatever the engagement is, and may find you all the more appealing for having your priorities straight.
    3. Plan your day in advance. Time invested in planning pays off at the end of the day and especially by the end of the week. Spend those 20 minutes in the morning laying out a schedule for yourself -it will be worth it when you know you can get done what needs to be done in time for that piano recital.
    It's never too late to start making such simple changes. In finding balance, efficiency is key. To learn more about finding the energy and time to improve both your work and family life, check out 5 more simple tips here >>


    Case #12-7:
    Use of Deceptive Domain Name / URL

    REALTOR® X, a principal broker in the firm XYZ, was technologically savvy and constantly looking for ways to use the Internet to promote his firm and drive additional traffic to his Web site.

    Being an early adapter to the Internet, he had registered, but not used, domain names that incorporated or played on the names of many of his competitors and their firms, including ABC, REALTORS®.

    REALTOR® X and his information technology staff concluded that one way to drive traffic to the firm's Web site would be to take advantage of the search engines commonly used by potential buyers and sellers. They realized that when potential buyers or sellers searched on key words like "real estate" or "REALTORS®" or on similar words, lists of domain names would appear, and that when consumers searched the Internet for ABC, REALTORS®, one of the domain names that might appear would be REALTOR® X's domain name,

    REALTOR® X decided to take advantage of the domain names that he had previously registered, and pointed several that used, in various ways, the names of his competitors, including "," to his site.

    In a matter of days, REALTOR® X learned that he had been charged with a violation of Article 12 of the Code of Ethics by REALTOR® A, the owner of ABC, REALTORS® , alleging that his (REALTOR® X's) use of the domain name "" presented a false picture to potential buyers and sellers and others on the Internet.

    At the hearing, REALTOR® X defended himself indicating that, in his opinion, use of a domain name was not advertising or a "representation" to the public but simply a convenient way for Internet users to find relevant Web sites. Moreover, "When web surfers reach my home page, there is no question that it is my site since I clearly show XYZ's name and our status as REALTORS®," he continued. "These complaints are just a lot of sour grapes from dinosaurs who aren't keeping up and who don't realize that on the Internet it's 'every man for himself.'"

    Based on your understanding of the Code of Ethics Article 12, how do you think the Professional Standards Panel ruled?

    Find out here >>


    Get Benefits Built for Your Business
    Real Estate Loans and Lines of Credit from REALTORS® FCU

    Learn about a variety of credit solutions to meet the day-to-day demands of your business as well as capital to fund your growth at

    • Business Lines of Credit to ramp up inventory or fund seasonal cash flows. REALTORS® FCU offers both revolving and closed-end credit programs.
    • Business Term Loans to provide funds for the purchase of equipment, vehicles, inventory or other fixed assets.
    • Business Real Estate Loans for purchasing or refinancing owner-occupied commercial real estate. REALTORS® FCU offers a number of financing options, all without a prepayment penalty.

    Join the only credit union designed to meet the unique needs of REALTORS® like you!


    Free Hands-On MRIS Tools Training at PGCAR

    MRIS 201: Maximize Your Productivity with MRIS Tomorrow, August 21, 9:30 am to 12:30 pm
    This class introduces the often overlooked tools and features available as an MRIS customer benefit that are designed to save you time and money.

    MATRIX 201: Customize Matrix to Fit Your Business Tomorrow, August 21, 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm
    Personalize Matrix to create easier navigation to better assist your advanced skills. These advanced features enable you to work more efficiently and productively.

    MRIS 101: Kick Off Your Career with MRIS September 25, 9:30 am to 12:30 pm
    Get in the real estate game faster with this introduction to all the various products and topics available with your MRIS subscription.

    MATRIX 101: The Need-to-Knows of Matrix September 25, 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm
    Settings, searches, contacts or emails. This is the best place to start and learn about the multiple functions Matrix offers.

    Visit for details and registration. Advance registration with MRIS is required.



    We wish you a happy and safe
    Labor Day weekend!

    PGCAR will be closed on Monday, September 3,
    in observance of the Labor Day holiday.

      Happy Labor Day

    Prince George's County Association of REALTORS®
    8300 Corporate Drive, Suite 100  :  Landover, MD 20785
    Phone 301-306-7900  :  Fax 301-306-8273  :  :  ©2012 PGCAR

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