Jami Besecker, Keller Williams Realty You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® member Jami Besecker as this year’s chair of NSDCAR’s Grievance Committee. The Grievance Committee receives ethics complaints and arbitration requests and determines whether a complaint, on its face, merits a formal hearing on the matter by a panel of the Professional Standards Committee. The purpose of the Grievance Committee is to provide a preliminary review and screening process. The committee is similar to a grand jury's function within the judicial system. Jami has served on the Grievance Committee since 1994. She also served for 10 years (1984-1994) on NSDCAR’s Professionals Standards Committee. The Professional Standards Committee hears complaints in matters of ethics and conduct mediation and arbitration hearings. But did you know that Jami is a member of an outrigger canoe club? “Just hum the theme to the Hawaii Five-O TV show and you’ll get the idea,” said Jami. For the past 15 years, Jami has been as an active member of the Kupa'a Mau Outrigger Canoe Club (KMOCC) located at Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton. The name Kupa'a Mau is the Hawai'ian translation of the U.S. Marine Corps motto Semper Fidelis, Latin for “Always Faithful.” Outrigger canoe paddling is the official state sport of Hawaii. “The paddling community always has a lot of fun,” said Jami. “We share a love of the ocean and an interest in experiencing the Polynesian culture and that aloha spirit. Our club is one of 28 clubs within the Southern California Outrigger Racing Association, which includes Southern California, Arizona and Nevada. Our teams regularly compete up and down the state and in Hawaii.” Jami also is a runner. She clocks between 15 and 20 miles weekly, running five mornings a week along the South Carlsbad State Beach campground. “It’s a beautiful beach, especially with the new stairways that leads to the beach,” she said. “The camp hosts and workers are my morning family.” Jami said she has competed in the Carlsbad Half Marathon for the past 13 consecutive Januarys and normally attends the annual Thanksgiving Day O’side Turkey Trot 10k. On Saturday morning, June 17, Jami plans to compete in the 4th annual San Diego County Fair 5k on a behind-the-scenes 3.1-mile course through the Del Mar Fairgrounds. “I like to run for exercise and it keeps me motivated, plus I like to eat,” Jami said. Jami grew up in Pennsylvania and is a diehard Pittsburgh Steelers NFL fan. She met her husband Ken while attending Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Indiana, Penn. “The next day after we were married (in April 1977), we headed west to live in San Diego as Ken got a job at NCR in Rancho Bernardo,” Jami said. “Ken built the system for the French to run their lottery system. We had planned to stay here for just a couple of years. Of course, that was 40 years ago.” Jami and Ken have two grown children, son Kyle who lives in Huntington Beach and works in computer technology (like his dad), and daughter Lindsey, who lives in Vista with her husband Greg and recently blessed the family with their first granddaughter, Avery Winnie Ball. “She’s the joy of Jami and Ken's life,” said Jami. Upon their arrival in California as newlyweds back in 1977, Jami was planning a career as an art teacher. “It was right before Proposition 13 passed. As a result, arts and music were among the first budget items to cut,” said Jami. (On June 6th, 1978, nearly two-thirds of California's voters passed Prop. 13, reducing property tax rates on homes, businesses and farms.) “My husband Ken saw a help-wanted ad in the newspaper for real estate. The ad read `Earn and Learn.’ So, I signed up and I’ve never looked back.” Jami earned her real estate license in 1978. She became a broker in 1982. “My broker number starts with zero-zero,” Jami said. “Yep, I’ve been around for a while.” She specializes in properties in Carlsbad, Leucadia, Encinitas, Oceanside, Vista , San Marcos, Escondido, Solana Beach and Carmel Valley. She has experience in 1031 exchanges, investment properties, VA, FHA, short sales and REOs. “I have seen the North County blossom to what it is today, the growth has been tremendous,” Jami said. “I have to say I am enjoying the business now more than ever,” said Jami. “After 40 years nonstop in the same career, I do not know not many people who can attest to that. I was blessed to find work where I can help clients achieve home ownership, create solid investments and sell the largest asset a family can have and having a great ride while doing so. I always advise anyone who will listen, `when you find a good realtor hang onto them, together you can have great long term journey.’” Jami is a stronger supporter of NSDCAR. “Our Association is in good hands because our members adhere to high standards of moral conduct and ethical conduct in real estate business practices. We stand for competency, fairness and high integrity. I’m proud to be a member.”
Elyse Dittrich Nancarrow Realty Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Young Professionals Network (YPN) By C.A.R. Director Elyse Dittrich Do you like to have fun and be informed? Then YPN is for you! Key Take Aways: • YPN stands for Young Professional Network • Get involved at our local NSDCAR YPN • Learn how to give and get referrals through YPN • August is the Month of Giving • #KeepCalmAndYPN YPN, or Young Professionals Network, is part of a national group of young, career-minded real estate professionals who want to stay abreast of the latest tools, resources, and networking opportunities. We work together to educate each other on the real estate industry and to move into leadership within CAR. YPN may have the word “young” in it, but we don’t discriminate! We encourage all ages to join in at our events at a local, state and national level. Let’s bridge the gap between ages and share information to becoming more successful. In Sacramento we hosted a workshop called “How to YPN” which was received quite well! We have been able to get new networks up and running at different local associations, as well as getting other networks back on their feet. In Sacramento we also hosted a Mega Mixer where 7 local association joined forces with CAR YPN to create one big night of networking! It’s events like these where you can connect with other people in the industry from all over the state. These are great for creating relationships for referrals! Interested in getting involved with NSDCAR’s YPN? Check out our FB page here: www.facebook.com/NSDCARYPN Interested in sharing information and referrals throughout the state of CA? Join our FB page: www.facebook.com/groups/carypn Interested in sharing information and referrals throughout the Nation? Join our FB page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/narypn/ Don’t forget to check in for August and see how you can join us in our annual Month of Giving! We encourage local YPNs to give back to their communities! Contact NSDCAR for more information on becoming an active member of our YPN group.
Would You Like To Know How Much A Bond Issue On The Ballot Is Going To Raise The Average Property Tax Before You Vote On It?
Sandi Adelson Homeland Properties Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Taxation and Government Finance By C.A.R. Director Sandi Adelson Would you like to know how much a bond issue on the ballot is going to raise the average property tax before you vote on it? C.A.R. is supporting a bill that would do just that. AB 1194 would require the ballot itself contain the estimate so that when you and your clients are voting on the bond the estimated average cost of that initiative is right in front of you so you can make a more informed decision. Would you like to show your clients how to reduce their property taxes even if values are increasing? Did you know that currently some property owners may qualify for property tax exemptions... disabled vets and their surviving spouses, seniors, etc. and are taking them? The problem is that it’s not something that the tax assessors and collectors highlight. As a matter of fact, it can be next to impossible to find out if your parcel qualifies for one (1) or more of these exemptions. C.A.R. has voted to “SPONSOR” a bill that would require tax collectors provide information on their websites regarding available exemptions AND that the tax bill contain the address of the website. (By the way, you can currently try to get this information, but it takes time and patience and there are no guarantees that you will ever contact the right department or person.) What if your property tax base could be transferred to your new property regardless of your age, the location of the new home, the price of the new home vs the selling price of your existing home, or whether you’ve done it before? C.A.R. has had a work group looking at the potential changes that could be made to expand Props 60 and 90. Currently you have to be over 55, you can only transfer once, the new home must be equal to or less than the selling price of your existing home (with adjustments for time), and the new home must be in San Diego County or one (1) of the other eleven (11) counties that have opted into Prop 90’s intercounty transfer ability. Florida has a tax model that allows “free” property tax base transfer with some qualifications, such as for primary residences only. It was approved that C.A.R. forward to the Secretary of State three (3) potential proposals for preparation of title and summary... the first step to a ballot initiative on a constitutional amendment.
The local real estate market remains strong in several areas according to reports from various industry sources. Home prices, including distressed sales, increased by 7.1 percent year-over-year in April, according to a CoreLogic report. The California-based property data and analytics company said the nation is seeing similar increases. Nationwide, prices increased by 6.9 percent from April 2016 to April 2017, Core Logic said. The CoreLogic Home Price Index Forecast indicates that home prices will increase by 5.1 percent on a year-over-year basis by April 2018. Also, according to CoreLogic, all-cash transactions are in decline in San Diego. All-cash sales share was 20.4 percent in January 2017, a 0.09 percentage point decrease from January 2016. The nation’s 36.5 percent all-cash figure for January was unchanged from the comparable month in 2016. Statewide, California had an average of 27 percent of its home sales were all-cash transactions in January. Fortunately, loan delinquency rates continue to decline in San Diego County. Core Logic reports that 2.6 percent of residential mortgages were at least 30 days delinquent in February, compared with 3 percent a year ago. The percentage of residential mortgages delinquent 90 days or more amounted to an even 1 percent, a drop from 1.3 percent in February 2016. In California, 3.1 percent of residential mortgages were at least 30 days delinquent and 1.1 percent were 90 days or more past due. In good news for potential buyers, mortgage rates have inched back down to nearly 4 percent. In mid-April, the average rate dropped to 4.04 percent, said Mortgage News Daily. The average for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 3.59 percent on Nov. 7. It started to climb after the general election, hitting 4.32 percent on Dec. 29. In costly markets, like Southern California, small rate changes can mean saving thousands of dollars over the life of a loan, even though rates are at historic lows. On the other hand, low rates do not change the home inventory situation, which is dismal. Low mortgage rates are certainly a boon for buyers, but it’s not much of a benefit if there’s very little available to buy. Meanwhile, home affordability changed little in San Diego County during the first quarter and remains elusive in many other parts of the state, according to the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.). C.A.R. found that 28 percent of San Diego-area households could afford a single-family home in the first quarter. It marked a slight improvement from the 27 percent figure in the fourth quarter of 2016, but a decrease from the 29 percent who could afford homes in the first quarter of 2016. C.A.R. said that it takes a minimum household income of $115,900 to afford the median home price of $564,000. That translates to a $2,900 monthly mortgage payment, including taxes and insurance, and assuming a 20 percent down payment. Statewide, the percentage of homebuyers who could afford to purchase a median-priced, existing single-family home in California in first quarter inched up to 32 percent, from 31 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016. A year ago, however, 34 percent could afford a median-priced, single-family home, according to the C.A.R. The statewide affordability index has been below 40 percent for 16 consecutive quarters, and it is near the mid-2008 low level of 29 percent. Also on the down side, according to C.A.R., pending home resales were down in San Diego County and across the state in April. Based on signed contracts, pending home sales statewide declined 7.4 percent year-over-year in April, making the fourth straight monthly drop. C.A.R.’s Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) registered 113.7 April compared to 122.8 a year ago. San Diego's pending sales index declined 11.1 percent year-over-year in April, ending up with an indexed level of 139.8. It marked the largest pending sales decline in Southern California. At the regional level, Southern California was actually the most resilient region in the state, where pending sales held on for a modest decline of 2.8 percent, aided by a 2 percent increase in Riverside County and a 1.1 percent uptick in Orange County. Also, to a new Zillow report, moving from a one-bedroom unit to a two-bedroom unit in San Diego will add $798 to the monthly mortgage. Zillow’s "Cost of Moving Up Analysis" report also shows that moving from a two-bedroom unit to a three-bedroom unit will add $928 to the monthly mortgage, and moving from a three-bedroom to a four-bedroom unit will add $998 to the monthly mortgage. In San Diego County, upgrading from a two-bedroom, one-bath home to a two-bedroom, two-bath home boosts the average monthly mortgage by $771. Payments increase to a more modest $791 a month when moving from a three-bedroom, one-bath unit to a three-bedroom, two-bath unit. However, the figure jumps to $962 when going to a three-bedroom, three-bath unit; increases to $988 when moving to a four-bedroom, three-bath house; and climbs to $1,368 a month extra when the upgrading to four bedrooms and four bathrooms. Finally, a recent study shows that California is crucial to U.S. growth. During the last five years, California has outperformed the nation in just about every important economic metric. Yes, the state is big, accounting for about 12 percent of the nation's population. But its share of economic growth has been even bigger. The state accounted for 17 percent of job growth in the United States from 2012 to 2016, and a quarter of the growth in gross domestic product. The Center for Continuing Study of the California Economy attributes California’s economic rebound to the three Ts, including technology, trade and tourism.
Ron Romanowich Heritage Realty & Financial Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Land Use and Environmental By C.A.R. Director Ron Romanowich Question: What can you do when the well runs dry? Imagine if you will, you buy a home site or an existing home that the only source of water is a well, and it runs dry or you choose to buy a property off the grid that has no access to a public or private water source or does not have an aquifer sufficient to supply potable water. One solution was to haul in water. In 2012, Los Angeles County began the process of assessing the feasibility of the adoption of an ordinance to allow hauled water as the primary source of potable water for new single-family residential construction in unincorporated areas of the county. The controversial proposal was to accommodate new home construction where no available service from a public or private water purveyor exists and where it has been demonstrated that an on-site groundwater well is not feasible. By allowing hauled water, it was estimated that an additional 42,872 parcels in the high desert could be developed for single family homes. However due to concerns that homes may be built in areas where water is not immediately available, the legislature passed SB 1263 (Wieckowski), which explicitly prohibits new residential development anywhere in California where the source of water supply is water transported by a hauler, bottled water, a water vending machine or a retail water facility. Concerned that the law will devalue properties, the Greater Antelope Valley Association of REALTORS® asked that C.A.R. change existing policy and consider adopting a “support” position for any future legislation which would modify this law to allow for the limited use of hauled water for the development of single-family homes on individual parcels. After much discussion and debate and information provided by Directors impacted by this issue, the Land Use Committee voted to support a motion to allow the use of hauled water for a permanent water supply for parcels used for vacation, residential building of homes after being informed by those Directors that the counties had imposed mandatory compliance for fire protection of those homes and parcels and testing of potability of the hauled water for domestic use. This completes my report. Ron Romanowich
Nancy Layne Windermere Homes & Estates Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Professionals Standards By C.A.R. Director Nancy Layne Would you like to be a fly on the wall at an ethics hearing? Wouldn’t you like to see the process? How much would it help to see how the rules apply? Would it bring life to words on a page? Of course, it’s not possible to attend an actual hearing, since they’re confidential, so The Giardinelli Law Group, APC has created Mock Hearing and Deliberation videos as an educational tool. They allow a sneak peek into the process, the application of the Code of Ethics, and the deliberations as well as drafting of Model Findings of Fact. The information on the Professional Standards Training, Model Findings of Fact and videos can be found on C.A.R.’s website, and the mock hearings are available on youtube at (1) Mock Ethics Hearing: https://youtu.be/qFZstK6wpFQ (2) Mock Ethics Deliberation: https://youtu.be/t52fWnoKW50 and (3) Mock Arbitration Hearing: https://youtu.be/8RFsP5T5QDA The Directors discussed the information from a number of areas, that some agents are reluctant or afraid to file an ethics dispute, and idea of an Ethics Advocate (AE) to “deter and educate” – possibly as a speaker at MLS meetings or offices, with a reminder of the process, in order to encourage training and participation. The Directors also discussed the ethics citation policy (Model Citation Schedule available on C.A.R. website), which is available to any local board, and if adopted, would create a new, “easier and faster” layer to the disciplinary process. It is required to have a 30-day timeline if no hearing is requested. If a citable offense is alleged, a citation is sent to the violator with a copy to Director’s Review. It can be amended, dismissed, increased or forwarded for full hearing at this point. If determined to be a citable offense, it is sent to the violator who has 10 days to decide to pay the fine or request a full hearing. If the citation is issued and paid, it is not reflected on the C.A.R. website so long as discipline is not imposed. Directors also further clarified the new biennial Code of Ethics training, with C.A.R. announcing new courses similar to the “Everyday Ethics” series, usually encompassing 3 articles, entitled “Know the Code” and available to membership online at http://www.store.car.org. The ethics classes which fulfill the biennial requirement can also be found in the Ethics portion of the CE renewal course, New Member Orientation Code of Ethics training at your local board, through N.A.R. Code of Ethics courses and Third Party Code of Ethics course providers. The CAR and NAR classes will automatically update the member’s NRDS number, Now, that was easy!
Lisa Fore McLain Properties Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Global Real Estate Forum By C.A.R. Director Lisa Fore What lies ahead for our economy? How is this economic cycle performing against prior post-recession data? Cyclical long-term slowdown in U.S. growth or are we nearing another recession? Are we nearing another recession? That is the magic question that everyone would love to predict. If we could all predict the economic cycles we would be able to play the markets correctly and we’d all be rich. In 2015 the Huffington Post wrote an article titled “History Tells Us 2016 Will See a Recession” stating four basic ingredients were required to enable the Great Recession to occur: greed, lax risk management, inadequate regulatory enforcement, and short memories. Short memories, those failing to remember that everything is cyclical. So what do the numbers tell us today? According to Sean Becketti, VP and Chief Economist of Freddie Mac, we’re in the 3rd largest expansion in US history but the weakest. 5.1% is the average expansion rate and we are at 2.4%. Labor force participation rates have been declining, but overall when they look at the data they have been declining for decades. Housing starts have picked up, but they haven’t reached the historical average of 1.5 million units, yet residential construction employment struggles to recover. Meanwhile, data shows the multifamily market is very strong. Sean states that they are not expecting a whole lot of change in sales volume but they are expecting refis to go down over the next year. Mortgage originations topped $2 trillion in 2016 but they are predicting they will be down nearly 25% this year and the next, mostly due to the drop in refis. With housing prices nationally at about level with the peak of 2016 what’s to come, how long will this market last? That’s always the big question.
Ron Romanowich Heritage Realty & Financial You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® Ron Romanowich as a member of the NSDCAR Local Government Relations (LGR) Committee, District 5, representing Escondido. The LGR Committee focuses on how public policies can affect the local real estate industry. Its members also are involved in political advocacy and candidate endorsements. Ron also serves on NSDCAR’s Grievance Committee and Professional Standards Committee. He served on the NSDCAR Board of Directors (2008-2010, 2013-2014) representing commercial real estate. Ron’s 54 years in the business and deals representing more than $1.5 billion in real estate value has earned him life membership with the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) and REALTOR® Emeritus designation with the National Association of REALTORS®. He has served as a C.A.R. Director and Chairman of C.A.R. Region 29 in 2013. He also served as Chairman of the C.A.R. REALTOR® For Life Nomination Committee (2014). But, did you know that Ron growing up in New Jersey was president of the Keyport High School’s Hot Rod Club called “The Royal Coachman?” “I got this idea as a teenager that our club should do something for some of the delinquent kids who weren't listening and were troublesome to their shop teachers, but they loved Hot Rods,” said Ron a native of Holmdel Township, New Jersey. “So, I got the support of the Raritan Township police department who encouraged these kids who were headed for trouble to come to our meetings at night and learn how to fix car engines. They learned a trade, plus they turned their lives around. I've always been very supportive of law enforcement. In the past, I've been involved in assisting law enforcement investigators and District Attorneys with child abduction and runaway kid incidents.” At age 19, Ron was working at a gas station as a mechanic when a guy ran into a nearby snow bank and damaged his car’s transmission oil line. “Here is this guy all dressed up in a suit, tie, and fur-lined topcoat, and I am working on his car with oil running down my arm, plus aches and bruises from also working on jobs in construction,” Ron recalled. “I asked him what he did for a living and he told me he sold real estate. “So within the week, I responded to an ad in the newspaper and the broker asked me how old I was. I answered ‘19-going-on-20,’ which he repeated several times like a wise-guy. So, I said, “Do you have a problem with 19-going-on-20?’ He said, ‘No, kid, I just wish I had started selling real estate when I was 19-going-on-20.’ I decided right then that real estate was for me.” Ron earned his license on his 20th birthday in 1962. His real estate career was interrupted after being drafted by the U.S. Army. He served as a Sergeant prior to being commissioned in 1967 as an Armor Officer. He ended his service as a Second Lieutenant in the Army Reserve. He built custom homes and sold real estate and loans in New Jersey before relocating to San Diego in 1972 to work in Poway for Clair Burgener, who later served five terms in the U.S. Congress (1973-1983). In San Diego, Ron purchased one of San Diego's first Gallery of Homes franchises in 1974. In 1976, he opened four ERA Realty offices and later two mortgage companies and two escrow companies. During his career, Ron has owned and managed real estate offices under several names, including Network 50 Relocation, Lefferts & Company Commercial, Realty Executives and American Spirit Realty. Ron's own company is called Heritage Realty and Financial. The 75-year-old Escondido resident estimates he has closed upwards of 14,000 combined closed transactions. Ron admires NSDCAR and its commitment to professionals and ethical standards. “The future leaders of our Association must never depart from high ethical behavior,” said Ron. “We need to approach all business dealings with a commitment toward professionalism and integrity. It's the best way to create and maintain trust in the marketplace.”
Ashley Robertson Bedard ReMax Regal You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® member Ashley Robertson Bedard as a member of the NSDCAR District Council for the Vista-San Marcos area. Ashley also is a recent recipient of a 2016 REALTOR® Award of Excellence. Awards were presented according to various geographical areas. Ashley was recognized for her work in the San Marcos-Vista area. In the past eight years she has organized four holiday blanket drives for the homeless, collecting an average of three truckloads of blankets and distributing meals. In addition, as a supporter of Solutions for Change, a Vista-based nonprofit that addresses family homelessness, Ashley assists annually with the Angel Tree drive at her real estate office. Plus, for Vista Teen Outreach, a nonprofit that focuses on childhood hunger, Ashley’s office collected 700 pounds of food benefitting 150 North County families last November at Thanksgiving. Also, for Susan G. Komen San Diego, Ashley has organized a Girls Night Out fundraiser that has raised funds for breast cancer services and support. “I believe REALTORS® should be driven to be the best, not only the most ethical people in business, but also the most generous,” Ashley said. “Goodness is about character, integrity, honesty, kindness and generosity. REALTORS® may be hard working, but should always contribute to helping others. We work hard because we want the world to be a better place.” But did you know that Ashley has a bachelor’s degree from Cal State San Marcos in Criminal Justice and Criminology? “Yes, I know, that degree has nothing to do with my current career,” said Ashley, the broker-owner of RE/MAX Regal in San Marcos. A San Diego native, Ashley graduated from Rancho Bernardo High School in three years. She began taking college classes at age 17 “I enjoyed the working world more than school,” she said. “I started working at age 15 at Barons Market in Rancho Bernardo. I did everything from bagging groceries, stocking the shelves, running the cash register, even ordering produce. I also manned the wine tasting table as a teenager, but I was too young to legally open the bottles.” In addition to Barons Market, she worked as a server at the Rancho Bernardo Inn for a couple of years and as a leasing agent for a residential rental company. She even sold insurance for five years. In 2006, she earned her real estate licensed and became a full-time agent in 2011, operating her own company called Ashley Dawn Realty in San Marcos. Then, she was approached by RE/MAX about purchasing a franchise office. “I never thought I would work with a large corporate firm, I wanted to remain independent,” Ashley said. “But, in August 2013, RE/MAX flew me to Ottawa, Canada for a broker’s conference. On the plane ride to Canada I felt guilty because I had no intention of joining RE/MAX. Three days later, my mind was changed. Then, for the next several months, I traveled throughout the U.S. and Europe, interviewing and shadowing top broker-owners with RE/MAX, Realty Executives and Keller Williams. On my 29th birthday, Feb. 20, 2014, I signed the agreement with RE/MAX. To this day, RE/MAX corporate in Denver says no other broker has ever done more research than me during their 45 years of existence.” Ashley and husband Ryan live in North Escondido with their Dalmatian named “Wrigley,” after Wrigley Field in Chicago. Ashley said she appreciates the training classes offered by NSDCAR. “We are blessed to have such a great Association with top-notch educational opportunities,” she said. “I always learn something when I attend a class and I also encourage my agents to attend classes. Plus, the service from the staff is outstanding.”
Chris Osteen Cal West Management Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Local Government Relations (LGR) By C.A.R. Director Chris Osteen Rent Control? I thought we took care of that... In 1995 C.A.R. sponsored legislation (Costa-Hawkins) that addressed rent control in those communities that did not currently have rent control legislation in place. At the time the legislation was proposed in five California Cities (Berkeley, Santa Monica, Cotati, East Palo Alto and West Hollywood) that had strict rent control restrictions in place. Costa-Hawkins prohibited vacancy control and exempted certain units from rent control. Exempted were new construction, single units with separate title (includes single family homes and condominiums). Ever since the passage of Costa-Hawkins tenant advocate groups have been pressing for ways around the legislation or ways to expand existing rental controls. In addition, some of our allies, Apartment Owners, are now second and third generation owners. If they fall under current rental restrictions the cash flow they are getting isn’t an issue with them. They have never experienced life without restrictions and in some communities the Apartment owners view rent control communities as a social byproduct of the housing crisis. As we all know rents have been rising extremely quickly over the past few years. There is simply greater demand than supply of rental units. As a result of rising rents, three assemblymen have introduced AB 1506 which will attempt to repeal Costa-Hawkins. So keep your eyes and ears open. It may not be called Rent Control but politicians are still looking for ways to impose rental restrictions and repeal may be a course of action for them.
Elyse Dittrich Nancarrow Realty Group Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Housing Affordability Fund (HAF) By C.A.R. Director Elyse Dittrich Do you know how HAF helps you and how you can support HAF?" Key Take Aways: • HAF stands for Housing Affordability Fund • An additional $500,000 was granted to continue to HOA grant program • HAF needs your support through donations! • HAF Golf Tournament Fundraiser is in San Diego this year! Great news! We were granted another $500,000 to keep the HOA Grant program alive! Get our there and tell your first time home buyers! Here is the link for more information: http://www.car.org/difference/haf/Hoaassistanceprogram/ The Housing Affordability Fund hosted their annual Casino Night in Sacramento at our Spring Business meetings. It’s fundraisers like this that allow us to continue and create new grants to help support our clients in buying homes. Donations from you are also so important! If you can donate even $25 it makes a difference (and it’s tax deductible)! It also keeps us in business. The more people we can help buy homes, the better! Here is the link to donate: http://www.car.org/difference/haf/hafonlinedonation/ On Monday, October 9th HAF will be hosting a golf tournament fundraiser at the Riverwalk Country Club in Mission Valley. If you’d like to sponsor or play in the tournament here is the link: http://www.car.org/difference/haf/hafgolftournament/ and the hole sponsorship is only $500! As a Member, you can make a voluntary contribution to this fund so that more programs like the HOA assistance program can be offered to your clients." If you want more information on what HAF is up to and how you can help please call me at (760) 505-3740 or email ElyseDittrich@gmail.com.
Sandi Adelson Homeland Properties, Inc. Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Legislative Committee By C.A.R. Director Sandi Adelson Are you or your clients confused about Support or Companion animals? The Rental Housing Support/Companion Animal Certification Bill would hopefully bring some defined clarity. The current housing providers must make “reasonable accommodations” for support, but there is no definition, as there is for service animals, and do not fall under the same protections under the ADA or California State Law. At issue has always been the lack of oversight/control. AB 1569 would clarify the right a landlord has to request “reliable” third party verification of the need for the animal AND would make the ID cards or online “ESA prescription” letters that you can purchase NOT sufficient verification. Have any investors who get a little upset when they get their new property tax bill and it’s gone up, because of new bonds and had no idea they were even proposed? Most home owners know that there are proposed new taxes and bonds on the ballot when they get their ballot pamphlet… they have a little advanced warning and they have the ability to campaign for or against them. Non-resident owners don’t receive those pamphlets so they have no chance of researching the issues and taking a stand… even if they can’t vote. AB 1333 would require any city, county or special district to notify all property owners no more than seven (7) days after the bond or tax has qualified for the ballot. Ever wonder why you get “Red Alerts”? C.A.R. doesn’t send “Red Alerts” on every issue that could be construed as “Real Estate Related.” There are some fights you just can’t win and when those come up you don’t get a notice to respond A.S.A.P. for two (2) reasons. First, too many notices and members scream, “ENOUGH!!!” C.A.R. wants you to know that if you get a notice, it’s important, it can impact your business, and if the response is loud and clear to our representatives in Sacramento we can win. Secondly, C.A.R. doesn’t want to overwhelm the representatives. They get overwhelmed too. C.A.R. wants them to know that when membership is responding it is a major concern. More information about these and other issues can be found online at http://www.car.org/meetings/carmeetings/committee-materials-archive/2017spring/legislativecvr/
San Diego County Agents Finally Get Improved Data Through a New Data-Share Between CRMLS and Sandicor NSDCAR’s leadership team is excited to announce that after years of advocating on our member’s behalf, the NEW data-share between Sandicor and CRMLS went into effect today. Although this is only the first step, it was critical in our effort to help agents gain access to more robust MLS tools in San Diego County. This has not been easy following lawsuits and much disagreement with SDAR, but it is what our members wanted, and we are pleased with the results. We will continue to champion our member’s agenda and work towards gaining access to new tools and services provided by CRMLS. San Diego County agents will finally get improved data through a new data-share between CRMLS and Sandicor. • Better data for client searches • Better listing information for CMAs • Cost savings to those who currently subscribe to more than one MLS. Starting today, Tuesday, May 23rd, Sandicor subscribers will be able to search for CRMLS (California Regional Multiple Listing Service) residential listings within Sandicor's Paragon MLS system and CRMLS members will be able to search for Sandicor residential listings within their Matrix MLS system. Sandicor subscribers will also be able to set up residential Paragon searches for clients in the areas served by CRMLS. While the lawsuit works its way through the courts, NSDCAR representatives are proud to have been a driving force behind this data-share agreement. REALTORS® will benefit from the tough decisions made by leaders from NSDCAR. The data-share is the right thing to do for REALTORS®, and it is the first step towards becoming a part of a larger effort for REALTORS® and Brokers to control their data, how it is used and how it is shared. A link to the charges can be found here on page 26 section 99. The movement to join a Statewide MLS that is member driven, NSDCAR is listening to REALTORS® from all over San Diego county and responding to a need. Agents are having to compete with consumer facing websites that provide more comprehensive data than their own web portals. We are working to change that so our members remain the authority in their industry. It is our goal to ensure our Brokers control their own data, and that it is protected and used correctly.
San Diego County agents will finally get improved data through a new data-share between CRMLS and Sandicor. Starting Tuesday, May 23, Sandicor subscribers will be able to search for CRMLS (California Regional Multiple Listing Service) residential listings within Sandicor's Paragon MLS system and CRMLS members will be able to search for Sandicor residential listings within their Matrix MLS system! Sandicor subscribers will also be able to set up residential Paragon searches for clients in the areas served by CRMLS. It is important to note that residential listings will automatically be sent to CRMLS, however, listing format (fields and selections) will NOT be a complete match with their database. Sandicor has and will continue to add new fields and pick list values in our efforts to better match the CRMLS format. For your convenience, here are links to the updated Residential Listing Input Form, and the NEW Fields and NEW Pick List Values. While programming work continues on adding other property types, the SmartLink into the CRMLS system will still also be available for use. This data-share is a huge victory for San Diego County REALTORS®.
Sandi Adelson Homeland Properties, Inc. Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Membership By C.A.R. Director Sandi Adelson Do you think or know your seller has audio and/or video surveillance at your listing? The revised listing form has added to paragraph 10 of the Listing Agreement to cover this. It advises the seller to post notices disclosing the surveillance, including “Nanny Cams.” Does “Non-Smoking” in the lease include e-cigs and vapes? The legal minds in this group asked Neil Kalin, one of C.A.R.’s attorneys that works on the forms, to include it. The form is being revised and paragraph 14 SMOKING will no longer be a check box, it will be the default. What’s new/updated Legal Q & A’s? As of January 1st, there are six (6) new titles: 1. Employee Notice of Asbestos and Prop 65 Warnings 2. Foreclosure Timeline 3. Housing Stimulus Laws for 2009 4 & 5. Lease/Rental Disclosure Chart (Feb 16, 2017, and April 3, 2017) 6. Real Estate Licensee’s Duty To Inspect Residential Property Did you hear that the California Supreme Court heard arguments for a case involving an Encinitas homeowner and the Coastal Commission? If you work on the coast, you may have heard of this. The homeowners were in fear of losing their homes because of the seawall failing after the rains. The Coastal Commission granted a permit to build a new wall, but it was conditional on reapplying in 20 years. The Coastal Commission then would be in a position to reconsider and conceivably could say take it down… in which case the homes would probably go down the cliff. How could you list or sell a home with having to make that kind of a disclosure? The case was argued May 4th, 2017… If you’re interested in some of the legal issues that were presented at this meeting go to www.car.org/meetings/carmeetings/committee-materials-archive/2017spring/laf052017/ Including a legal update from Elizabeth Miller-Bougdanos, C.A.R. Senior Counsel, in which she presents a “Grab Bag,” including Mining MLS Expired Listings (Rules & Do Not Call Laws), Zillow Group Syndication Development & Litigation Update, and Days On Market Representation.
Michael Carunchio Real Estate Outlet Plus, NSDCAR Board President Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento CALBre Forum By C.A.R. Director Michael Carunchio Do You Know the Number of People Taking the California State Real Estate Sales License Exam? From 3/31/2016 – 7/1/2017 there were 35, 638 exams given From 7/01/2016 – 3/31/2017 there were 38,493 exams given BROKER Exams 2016 3,976 2017 3,638 Total Licensees as of 3/31/2016 Total 406,505 Agents 271,284 Brokers 135,221 Total Licensees as of 3/31/2017 Total 413,341 Agents 279,500 Brokers 133,841 Enforcement License Denials 2017: 155 up 22 Disciplinary Actions: 388 up 88 Desist & Refrain Orders: 60 up 25 Citations: 498 DOWN 140 Investigative Audits: 277 up 13 from this time last year. TOP 3 OFFENSES: #1 PROPERTY MANAGEMENT Licensed, doing it wrong Unlicensed acting in the capacity of a licensee #2 Broker Owned Escrows Several types of violations #3 Trust Fund Violations If you need to communicate with the CalBRE they have about 11 telephone operators. Whenever possible use the eLicensing online system and not the US mail. They report it can add 20-35 days to processing if you mail in your applications. www.CalBRE.Ca.Gov
Bonnie Frazier ERA Rancy & Sea Realty NSDCAR Local Government Relations (LGR) Committee Member You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® member Bonnie Frazier as a member of the NSDCAR Local Government Relations (LGR) Committee, District 5, representing Vista. She has served as an LGR member since 2004. LGR Committee maintains an intense interest in all things governmental. Their task is to keep abreast of hot issues and emerging trends that could affect the professional interests of REALTORS®. In their role as an advisory committee to the NSDCAR Board, the LGR Committee provides a forum for political advocacy and policy discussion and development. They formulate recommendations for formal action or public policy positioning for consideration by the NSDCAR Directors. Endorsements from the NSDCAR LGR are highly valued by political candidates running in elections for local, statewide and national offices. Bonnie also served on behalf of NSDCAR as a California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) Director from 2006 to 2009. In addition, for the past nine years, she has taught real estate classes at Palomar College. In recent years, she has taught “Real Estate Practice” every semester and “Real Estate Finance” once a year. But did you know that Bonnie at age 12 handed flyers to her neighbors asking them to vote for John F. Kennedy as president? “I’ve always been interested in politics and serving in a watchdog role, that’s why I like the LGR Committee,” said Bonnie. “I remember me and my 8-year-old brother walking along our street, Glenhaven Way in Chula Vista, passing out flyers for Kennedy. I’ve been walking precincts since then. I knew Kennedy would be a good president. I was attending Oceanside High School when he was shot. That’s a day I’ll never forget.” Bonnie is a San Diego native, born at Naval Hospital, North Island. She graduated from Vista High School (class of 1966). “I’ve lived in California my whole life,” Bonnie said. After high school, she moved to the Los Angeles area where she lived for 25 years. “I worked for a couple of years for EF Hutton (a stock brokerage) in Hollywood and took night classes at San Fernando Community College,” said Bonnie. “I enjoyed living there. I had my horse in Burbank and really enjoyed riding through Griffith Park.” Later, Bonnie’s family moved to the Antelope Valley. “We lived there during an exciting time in our nation’s history,” said Bonnie. “We were there when the Space Shuttle Challenger spacecraft was rolled out on the Lockheed tarmac for the first time in 1981. We were there when they introduced the B-1 Stealth Bomber. We got up at 4 a.m. one morning to watch that plane take-off. I used to ride my horse through Leona Valley and watch the test jets break the sound barrier as they streamed across the (Mojave) desert sky.” She started her real estate career in Palmdale in 1983. She first sold new homes for several years and then switched to resale in 1990, “right before the recession hit,” Bonnie said. She served on the board of the Greater Antelope Valley Association of REALTORS®. She also was volunteered as legislative liaison with a business women’s group. “I’ve always been out there fighting for women’s rights,” Bonnie said. After a divorce in 1997, Bonnie and her two daughters, Natalie and Nicole, moved near family members to North County’s Vista community. Today, the daughters are grown and are raising their own families. Bonnie’s sister is a hairstylist in Vista and another sister is a nurse and lives in La Costa. Also, a brother who is retired lives in Vista and the youngest brother works as a police officer in Corpus Christie, Tex. Bonnie’s sister-in-law was a counselor at New Haven Youth and Family Services, a residential facility for at-risk adolescent boys in Vista. “For the past nine years, I’ve been fundraising for New Haven,” said Bonnie. “They have an excellent program that transforms lives. Their program recognizes and remedies the root causes of at-risk youth and guides boys into a hopeful and productive future.” Bonnie is proud to be involved at NSDCAR. “We have a great Association that provides lots of support for our members, no matter what your experience,” she said. “The educational classes are excellent. Our programs and services enhance our members’ abilities to conduct business with integrity and competency and keep us on top of our game.”
Marie Jebavy The Real Estate Consultants, Board Director Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Strategic Planning & Finance By C.A.R. Director Marie Jebavy Why Would a Team Leader or Broker Have to Worry About Labor Laws? Are you requiring your team members to be at the office working certain hours, holding certain number of open houses per month or a certain number of phone calls a day, week, or month? That’s all it takes to be considered an employee. And who is the employer, the Broker or the Team Leader? There are so many pitfalls in labor laws that you should seek legal counsel to protect yourself and your Broker. This is pretty much the Wild West right now but that is when mistakes are made and consequences are huge. IRS 20 Factor Test on Employment Status As an aid to determining whether an individual is an employee under the common law rules, 20 factors or elements have been identified as indicating whether sufficient control is present to establish an employer-employee relationship. The 20 factors have been developed based on an examination of cases and rulings considering whether an individual is an employee. The degree of importance of each factor varies depending on the occupation and the factual context in which the services are performed. The 20 factors are designed only as guides for determining whether an individual is an employee; special scrutiny is required in applying the 20 factors to assure that formalistic aspects of an arrangement designed to achieve a particular status do not obscure the substance of the arrangement (that is, whether the person or persons for whom the services are performed exercise sufficient control over the individual for the individual to be classified as an employee). The 20 factors are described below: The 20 factors used to evaluate right to control and the validity of independent contractor classifications include:
- Level of instruction. If the company directs when, where, and how work is done, this control indicates a possible employment relationship.
- Amount of training. Requesting workers to undergo company-provided training suggests an employment relationship since the company is directing the methods by which work is accomplished.
- Degree of business integration. Workers whose services are integrated into business operations or significantly affect business success are likely to be considered employees.
- Extent of personal services. Companies that insist on a particular person performing the work assert a degree of control that suggests an employment relationship. In contrast, independent contractors typically are free to assign work to anyone.
- Control of assistants. If a company hires, supervises, and pays a worker's assistants, this control indicates a possible employment relationship. If the worker retains control over hiring, supervising, and paying helpers, this arrangement suggests an independent contractor relationship.
- Continuity of relationship. A continuous relationship between a company and a worker indicates a possible employment relationship. However, an independent contractor arrangement can involve an ongoing relationship for multiple, sequential projects.
- Flexibility of schedule. People whose hours or days of work are dictated by a company are apt to qualify as its employees. Demands for full-time work. Full-time work gives a company control over most of a person's time, which supports a finding of an employment relationship.
- Need for on-site services. Requiring someone to work on company premises— particularly if the work can be performed elsewhere—indicates a possible employment relationship.
- Sequence of work. If a company requires work to be performed in specific order or sequence, this control suggests an employment relationship.
- Requirements for reports. If a worker regularly must provide written or oral reports on the status of a project, this arrangement indicates a possible employment relationship.
- Method of payment.Hourly, weekly, or monthly pay schedules are characteristic of employment relationships, unless the payments simply are a convenient way of distributing a lump-sum fee. Payment on commission or project completion is more characteristic of independent contractor relationships.
- Payment of business or travel expenses. Independent contractors typically bear the cost of travel or business expenses, and most contractors set their fees high enough to cover these costs. Direct reimbursement of travel and other business costs by a company suggests an employment relationship.
- Provision of tools and materials. Workers who perform most of their work using company-provided equipment, tools, and materials are more likely to be considered employees. Work largely done using independently obtained supplies or tools supports an independent contractor finding.
- Investment in facilities. Independent contractors typically invest in and maintain their own work facilities. In contrast, most employees rely on their employer to provide work facilities.
- Realization of profit or loss. Workers who receive predetermined earnings and have little chance to realize significant profit or loss through their work generally are employees.
- Work for multiple companies. People who simultaneously provide services for several unrelated companies are likely to qualify as independent contractors.
- Availability to public. If a worker regularly makes services available to the general public, this supports an independent contractor determination.
- Control over discharge. A company's unilateral right to discharge a worker suggests an employment relationship. In contrast, a company's ability to terminate independent contractor relationships generally depends on contract terms.
- Right of termination. Most employees unilaterally can terminate their work for a company without liability. Independent contractors cannot terminate services without liability, except as allowed under their contracts.
Members of the North San Diego County Association of REALTORS® (NSDCAR), led by 2017 President Michael Carunchio, recently attended the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) 2017 Legislative Day, held in Sacramento. The event, the 45th annual, featured opportunities for NSDCAR members to meet and discuss real estate issues directly with state legislators and their staff members, as well as hear from California’s political leaders and the leadership of the state association. NSDCAR members who visited Sacramento and who are C.A.R. members, in addition to Carunchio, included Kim Murphy C.A.R. Director Chair, Raylene Brundage, Sandi Adelson, David Cabot, Carolyn D’Agosta, Elyse Dittrich, Lisa Fore, Marie Jebavy, Nancy Layne, Chris Osteen, Bob Pahlke, Ron Romanowich Rick Snyder, and Kevin Williamson Other NSDCAR members who traveled to Sacramento included Andrea Bernardino, Jackie Camacho, Jessi Jebavy, Jianie Bernard, Jovani Ruiz, Lazaro Castillo, Letty Perez, Matthew Caldera, Michael Nucci, Nila Esposito, Sam Murphy and Steven Hughes. Also attending were NSDCAR staff members Richard D’Ascoli, Ernie Cowan and Lynn Sullivan.
Nancy Layne Windermere Homes and Estates Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Membership By C.A.R. Director Nancy Layne Why are we members of this anyway? What’s the benefit to me? How does this help my clients? How does it get me business? If you’ve wondered what your local, state and national boards do for you, we have the answers! Join the army of people who work crazy hours to ensure that property rights are protected, our professionalism is enhanced, our legislators work for us and our business and our customers have the latest technology and protections! Just ONE of the FREE C.A.R. member benefit programs you might not know about is the Finance Helpline, which has helped hundreds of REALTORS® and their clients save deals. The Helpline can provide both answers and one-on-one assistance with moving your stalled real estate transactions forward, including invaluable assistance with short sales, funding, REOs, deeds in lieu, and other financing questions or issues. Simply go to the website at http://www.finance.car.org - click on the button to submit an inquiry and fill out the pertinent information, or call the Helpline at (213) 739-8383 or email firstname.lastname@example.org You can also like their Facebook page and get timely information you can share with your clients. Zipform rolled out some new features, notably the Collaboration link inside transactions, enabling sharing, chatting and screen-sharing with selected entities in each transaction. This helps to combat the fraud which has mushroomed recently, by keeping documents and communication in a secure, encrypted environment. Transaction history is maintained, and all activities are archived with a date and time stamp. No more uploading dozens of email conversations! Additionally, the legal tools are constantly updated and improved so that members can utilize the largest pool of information possible in order to make their information base robust, and help keep their transactions on track. Some of these tools are shareable videos, office presentations, flyers, infographics and more! Upcoming topics were announced, and include visual inspections, teams, death disclosures, drones, square footage and boundaries. All so we can be the best, most informed REALTORS® possible. Now, that’s a good thing!
Raylene Brundage Pacific Sotheby's International Realty Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento HOUSING - HOME OWNERSHIP: By C.A.R. Director Raylene Brundage How Will Our New Political Administration Affect Affordable Housing?
It didn't take long for our REALTOR® organizations to weigh in with our position about the lack of affordable housing. The Directors (your state representation) voted in favor that the California Association of REALTORS®, in conjunction with National Association of REALTORS® oppose the elimination of Housing and Urban Developments (HUD’s) affordable housing programs listed in President Trump’s proposed 2018 budget.
On our state level we also continue to focus on the lack of affordable housing. The several bills that the directors voted to support, are related. The specific bills that the Directors voted to support are:
SB35 (Wiener), SB 540 (Roth) and AB 73 (Chiu), which create build-by-right programs to allow for expedited approval for developments consistent with local zoning and planning requirements.
AB 1350 (Friedman), which penalizes cities or counties for non-compliance with their housing element.
AB 1598 (Mullin), if amended to include "affordable workforce housing," defined as households earning no more than 120% of an area's median income, to the types of programs authorized under this authority.
Note: AB 1598 (Mullin) authorizes cities and/or counties to establish an affordable housing authority. The authority would be permitted to issue bonds backed by tax increment financing, local sales tax and use tax revenue to provide low and moderate income housing. The authority would sunset in 45 years.
AB 30 (Caballero), to prohibit courts from stopping the conversion of a strip mall to affordable housing units if the development is consistent with local planning and zoning requirements.
AB 943 (Santiago), which limits the ability of development opponents to delay or stop the approval of housing projects by increasing voter approval to 55% when proposing local ordinances to stop growth within a city or county.
Kim Murphy Murphy & Murphy SoCal Realty Spring 2017 C.A.R. BOD Meetings in Sacramento Transaction and Regulatory By C.A.R. Director Kim Murphy Do You Think a Home Inspector Should be a Licensed Contractor? What kind of license would qualify? How much more would they charge to do an inspection? Would there be fewer Home Inspectors? On the surface, we would all like to have Home Inspectors be licensed, so we knew that there was a standard measure within the reporting by the various home inspectors. But in AB 717 (Dababneh) the license requirement wasn't specific, and if they are going to have to have a license to perform home inspections, then a general contractors license would be the most appropriate license to hold. But if they were required to hold a general contractors license, how many current home inspectors would be available? How much more would they charge for their services if they were all licensed general contractors? With all those things considered, the Directors voted to oppose the bill. The Directors also voted to support AB 534 (Gallagher), which allows a mechanic's liens for work performed on the common area to be served on the HOA rather than on each unit owner, and permit unit owners to clear the lien on their separate interest by recording a pro rata lien release bond. Now that's good news! Directors also voted to support AB 271 (Caballero) which limits the ability of PACE providers to collect late fees that accrue on delinquent PACE assessments and voted to support that CAR in conjunction with NAR support adding the words "increasing homeownership" to the mission of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
The North San Diego County Association of REALTORS® 2017 Election will be held during the period beginning June 14, 2017, at 9:00 am through June 28, 2017, at 5:00 pm. Members in good standing as of April 28, 2017, will be entitled to vote. Click the link below to view the full announcement and slate of candidates. Notice of Election of Directors, Annual Meeting, and Slate of Director Candidates The NSDCAR Annual Membership Meeting will take place on Thursday, June 22, 2017, at the NSDCAR Vista Service Center. The Annual Meeting is free to members, however, seating is limited and pre-registration is required. Walk-ins will be accepted as space permits.
George Hartt, HomeSmart Realty NSDCAR Board Director You may know George Hartt as a NSDCAR board member representing the Central Coast (he’s now in his second two-year term). He also has previously served as a member of NSDCAR’s Grievance Committee, as chair of a Sandicor Coordinating Committee and as a MLS beta tester of Fusion and Paragon. George also has been recognized with a 2011 REALTOR® Award of Excellence based on his volunteer efforts with such organizations as Brother Benno’s Foundation in Oceanside, Oceanside YMCA, and the San Diego Food Bank. He helped to organized a group of REALTORS® and affiliates to assist in building four homes in five days for Habitat for Humanity in Oceanside and received a plaque from the Oceanside mayor. But did you know that George has a doctorate in engineering mechanics with a minor in mathematics from North Carolina State University? He also completed prerequisite courses for an MBA at Ohio State University while working full time. Before real estate, he was a VP of technology for a company that manufactured reinforced composite body parts and reduced the weight of Corvette automobile body panels by 30 percent. With another company, George oversaw R&D work in fiberglass composites used in pipes, tanks and vinyl floors. In his first industrial assignment, George was a research scientist team member. His team developed what is known today as Tyvek® after analyzing nearly 30,000 test results. Today, Tyvek® has more than 35,000 applications, including tarps, tents and house-wraps for insulation and-or fumigation and many other uses. Despite his many successes in manufacturing and fabrication, George still feels badly at what happened when he was chairman and CEO of United Steel Fabricators in Indianapolis. The company supplied structural steel, tanks, bins, hoppers and handrails to industrial clients and construction companies. George arrived in 1993 and he said he increased sales 380 percent to $16 million annually and expanded the manufacturing area from 21,000 square feet to 100,000 square feet. “Everything was going great and then 9/11 happened (on Sept. 11, 2001),” George said. “The aftermath of that attack by the terrorists caused many businesses to pause on construction or halt it altogether. Our clients cancelled many of their orders. We dropped 40 percent in revenue. About 100 people lost their jobs, including me. We eventually declared bankruptcy and closed the factory in 2003.” George then moved to Southern California to consult with several start-ups that took advantage of his 40 years of experience in business and project management. In 2006, he started his real estate sales career. So why the switch to real estate? “I had much success in my career at making new products and in research,” said George. “But I was ready for something new and to be my own boss so I chose real estate.” “If you don’t take care of yourself then you won’t be able to help other people,” said George, age 77. “I believe it’s important to be good to yourself so you can be good to others. This is why I go to the gym nearly seven days a week.” George, who lives in Carlsbad, is proud to serve as a NSDCAR board member “Our Association is dedicated to doing everything for the benefit of the members,” he said. “We don’t have personal agendas. None of us have ever benefited from personal gain. We work entirely for the members. They can have the absolute confidence that our Association is excellent and well-run.”
Kevin Williamson of Coldwell Bank Res Brokerage with his wife Holley and their family You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® member Kevin Williamson as a new NSDCAR board member representing Inland areas. Kevin is in the first year of his first, two-year term. He also is a member of NSDCAR’s Local Government Relations Committee (LGR). He also has served the past two years as a California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) Director representing NSDCAR. Kevin also served as a C.A.R. Director on behalf of the Inland Valleys Association of REALTORS® when he worked in Riverside. But did you know that Kevin met his future wife at church claiming to be a member of the so-called “Activity Committee?” “I’ll admit it, it was the slyest thing I have ever done,” said Kevin. Kevin was age 21 at the time. He had just returned from spending two years in the Dominican Republic on a mission trip with his church. “Holley was on a date with another guy at the time, but I wanted to meet her and get her phone number. So, me and a buddy approached them and told them we were members of the Activity Committee and we needed their phone numbers. Holley was initially reluctant. Later she told me she was going to give me the wrong number. I called her a few days later. And, the rest is history.” Kevin and Holley will celebrate their 16th wedding anniversary in June. Today, they have five children, ages 14, 12, 9, 3 and 1. They live in Rancho Bernardo. “Our lives are packed these days with work, our kids’ school and sports activities and church,” said Kevin, who has served as a soccer, basketball, and volleyball coach. After their wedding in 2001, Kevin was going to school with plans for a career with a corporate restructuring firm. “When I found out that I would be spending about two weeks every month on the road, that’s not ideal for newlyweds,” said Kevin. “So a mentor at church said that I would do well in real estate. But, he said I would need to spend two hours a day on cold calls, which was easy for me after speaking Spanish while knocking on doors in the Dominican Republic for eight hours every day for two years.” Kevin started selling real estate at age 22 in November 2002. “I sold full-time for eight years before switching to real estate management,” Kevin said. He managed a real estate office in Rancho Cucamonga for three years before moving to San Diego’s Rancho Bernardo to manage another office before his current position with a Rancho Bernardo Coldwell Banker office that has about 100 agents. “Maintaining high standards of professionalism is important to me and I enjoy helping our agents become more successful,” Kevin said. “Those are my same goals as an Association board member. I don’t take lightly my responsibilities at NSDCAR. We have an outstanding Association, and we need strong, competent, motivated directors. I want to protect and improve our industry so my children will have an opportunity to become homeowners. I can say truthfully that NSDCAR is making a huge impact in our community and industry.”
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Kimberly Fell HomeSmart Realty West You may know REALTOR® member Kimberly Fell who serves on the NSDCAR board of directors representing the Tri-Cities district. She joined the board in July 2013 to fill a vacancy and is now completing her second two-year term, which ends in December. But did you know that Kimberly has eight pets, including six dogs, one cat and one potbellied pig named Wilbur? “I am very pet-centric, and have a special place in my heart for senior and disabled dogs,” said Kimberly, who also volunteers with Chihuahua Rescue of San Diego. “One of our dogs is blind, another is paralyzed and a third who has heart disease is pharmaceutically powered.” Kimberly was born and raised in Decorah, Iowa. She attended the University of Iowa and was a member of the Hawkeye Marching Band. She played the clarinet and later joined the flag corp. “The music majors thought I wasn’t serious enough,” Kimberly said, “Besides, who can hear a clarinet in a marching band anyway? I had more fun with the flag corp. My freshman year we went to Pasadena for the Rose Bowl, my sophomore and junior years we came to San Diego for the Holiday Bowl. After spending three straight Christmas seasons in Southern California, I knew where I would move after graduating.” On Friday, May 5, 1989, Kimberly graduated from college. She was scheduled to begin interning at the Scripps Center for Executive Health in UTC onTuesday, May 9th. “After the ceremony and all the good-byes were over, I went to bed but couldn’t sleep because I was so excited about moving to California,” she said. “So I got up and started driving west at 2 a.m. by myself with everything I owned in my 1980 VW Rabbit.” After the internship, her first job in San Diego was selling Electrolux vacuum cleaners door to door. “In my first month, at 22 years old, I made $5,000,” said Kimberly. Apparently, a sales career was her destiny. She started selling BMWs in 1996, and remained in the car business through 2010 as a finance director. In 2005, Kimberly was the top BMW salesperson in the country. Her sales efforts earned her an African safari trip to Kruger National Park in South Africa. “For an animal lover like me, it was the trip of a lifetime,” said Kimberly. “I had just met my husband Robert who came with me as my guest.” They were married in 2008. The latter part of 2010 was spent studying for her real estate exam and visiting Iowa to assist her mom after her dad passed away from a brain tumor (glioblastoma) at age 65. “It was divine intervention that after 25 years of constant work and infrequent visits to Iowa I was able to spend a few months helping Mom get her affairs in order and prepare for the sale of the home my parents had owned for 45 years,” Kimberly said. She received her real estate sales license in May 2011 and signed up with NSDCAR. In November 2012, she joined HomeSmart Realty West, which now has about 545 agents. In 2015, Kimberly earned Agent of the Year honors. In 2016, she tied for second in the Agent of the Year competition. Kimberly and Robert moved to Fire Mountain in Oceanside in 2013, after living in the foothills of Vista for the previous 17 years. “I love real estate and spending time with other NSDCAR members who are motivated to success,” said Kimberly. “Our Association is strong because our members are driven, self-starters. It’s inspiring to see our fellow members accomplish whatever they desire to do in their real estate careers.”
Spring has barely sprung, but it appears we’re already in the thick of a frenzied spring home buying season. Depending on who you’re listening to, San Diego County’s housing market seems to be off to a blooming start. Industry sources confirm the market is growing and getting stronger. Low inventory continues to be a significant problem, as well as high prices are keeping waves of buyers at bay. However, thanks to uncommonly low interest rates, mortgage payments have remained pretty reasonable even in the face of increasing purchase prices. Among the latest housing market headlines: -- According to the University of San Diego Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate, the local economy is picking up steam and is expected to do better than what had previously been expected. The Center’s Index of Leading Economic Indicators is now forecasting employment growth at 30,000 new jobs in 2017, compared with a previous forecast of 25,000 jobs announced at the end of 2016. Analysts say the economy is growing because of improved local labor conditions, rising prices of local stocks and stronger measures of U.S. consumer confidence due to President Trump’s business-friendly policies. -- According to www.Realtor.com, the National Association of REALTORS® official website, San Diego was the 8th “hottest” real estate market in March with the typical home taking just 38 days to sell. California led the United States with six of the top 10 real estate markets. Nationwide a home is typically on the market for 69 days, eight days less than this time last year. It’s much less in California, however, with homes in booming Silicon Valley homes typically selling after just 25 days. -- According to the latest housing market report from the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.), the median number of days it took to sell a single-family home dropped from 37.4 days in January to 33.4 days in February and was down from 41.5 days in February 2016. -- According to CoreLogic, an Irvine-based real estate data and analytics information service, the median sales price of a home in San Diego County jumped by 8.1 percent in February, compared with the same month a year earlier, while the number of homes sold fell by 1.6 percent. The median price of a San Diego County home was $492,000 in February, up from $455,000 in February 2016. In Southern California, the median price of a home was $460,000 in February, up 1.1 percent from the month before and up 7 percent from the same period last year. -- Also according to C.A.R., existing single-family home sales totaled 400,500 in February on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, down 4.7 percent from January and up 4.9 percent from February 2016. February’s statewide median home price was $478,790, down 2.2 percent from January and up 7.6 percent from February 2016. Also, closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California remained above the 400,000 benchmark for the 11th consecutive month and totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 400,500 units in February, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations and MLSs statewide. The statewide sales figure represents what would be the total number of homes sold during 2017 if sales maintained the February pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales. Finally, C.A.R. said the share of homes selling above asking price dipped from 31 percent a year ago to 30 percent in February. Conversely, the share of properties selling below asking price increased to 37 percent from 35 percent in February 2016. The remaining 34 percent sold at asking price, down from 35 percent in February 2016. The homes that sold above asking price, the premium paid over asking price edged up to 12 percent, up from 11 percent a year ago. “While it’s encouraging to kick off the year with back-to-back yearly sales increases, moving forward, California’s housing market could lose steam in the long term as the Fed begins to adjust the federal funds rate,” said C.A.R. President Geoff McIntosh. “In the short term, however, the specter of higher interest rates may push buyers off the fence to purchase a home before mortgage rates move even higher.”
Kara Courtney, Windermere Homes & Estates You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® member Kara Courtney as a recipient of a 2016 REALTOR® Award of Excellence for the Oceanside area. She helped coordinate two NSDCAR community service projects consisting of members painting portions of the Boys & Girls Clubs in Oceanside and San Marcos. Kara also serves on the NSDCAR Oceanside District Council. But did you know that Kara started developing her negotiating skills as a child? “There used to be a small convenience store in La Costa that had the best cookies, it’s no longer there,” said Kara. “My favorite cookie as a kid was white chocolate macadamia nut. My mom would wait outside the store and give enough money to buy just one cookie as a treat after school, but I would walk out with two or three or more. Most of the time, I would just ask nicely for extra cookies. If that didn’t work, my favorite line was `I see that you have a lot of cookies and it’s late in the day, you don’t want to sell day-old cookies tomorrow morning, do you?’ Eventually, I became a regular and made friends with all the clerks, so getting the extra cookies became easier. “Looking back, I was developing some of the negotiating skills that I use today. I’m determined person. I know that hick-ups can happen with any transaction. But, if one way doesn’t work, then I’ll try another or even another. I can be creative and find a way to get what we want by focusing on how to make it a win-win for everyone. Last year, a large majority of my buyers paid less than what their home appraised for. I generally don’t give up until we have success.” Kara, 30, grew up in Carlsbad. She attended La Costa Meadows Elementary School, Aviara Oaks Middle School and Carlsbad High School (class of 2005). She graduated in three years with a bachelor’s degree in Communications from California State University San Marcos. “I met some of my college requirements with AP tests credit in high school and from passing tests instead of taking the classes in college,” she said. “In college, when I had the option of taking any two classes to satisfy the credit requirements, I chose real estate because I always had an interest in the industry.” Her first job after college was with San Diego-based Rubio’s Fresh Mexican Grill restaurant chain, now called Rubio’s Coastal Grill. She spent six years (2008-2014) working in the corporate office starting as a marketing assistant. She was later promoted to associate marketing manager. “Part of my job was to manage the purchasing and printing of marketing materials for about 200 restaurants,” Kara said. “After I qualified a new vendor, then I would find more cost affordable options and negotiate better deals for the benefit of the company. Because I had contributed to the company by saving a lot of money, I was honored by Ralph Rubio himself with the Founder’s Award.” While still working at Rubio’s, Kara finished up her last real estate course at Palomar College. “All the real estate classes I took through college and books I read solidified in me that I had the right skills for real estate,” she said. “I have an amazing great uncle Tom who was very successful as a commercial real estate investor. He knew how to add value to a property. I grew up admiring him a lot.” Kara said her goal was to earn her sales license before age 25. “I passed the test 13 days before my birthday,” she said. “My first listing was my own house that I lived in with my husband, so I became my first client. We sold a fixer-upper we had bought a few years earlier. The day it closed was my last day at Rubio’s. We made enough profit from the house sale to pay the bills for a while until my real estate business got established.” Today, Kara works at Windermere Homes & Estates. Her husband Jesse is a custom woodworking contractor who specialized is building custom kitchens. Kara says she is grateful for the work of NSDCAR. “I love our Association because it’s about collaboration and the success of our members. We are like-minded in our tenacity, friendliness, desire to learn more and make an impact in our client’s lives. Plus, we want to help our community for the better. REALTORS® can pave the way to make our communities an even better place to work and live.”
Chris Osteen, Cal West Management You may know NSDCAR REALTOR® member Chris Osteen as a current member of NSDCAR’s Local Government Relations Committee (LGR), District 3, representing Cardiff, Encinitas, Leucadia, and Olivenhain. Chris also served as an NSDCAR board member and NAR director for many years. “I think I’ve been a member of the LGR since the first year of the Association’s existence (1994),” said Chris, who served as president of the San Dieguito Board of REALTORS® (1984 and 1985). But did you know that Chris drove across the country in a camper for a year? “I had graduated from college in Florida, I was newly married and we decided to travel around and see the country up-close,” said Chris. “We went wherever we felt like going. We saw amazing things. I’ll never forget seeing a Golden Eagle sitting on top of a pine tree in Alaska.” Chris was born in Ft. Myers, Fla., and grew up in Pompano Beach. “My first-grade teacher was my dad’s first-grade teacher, her name was Mrs. Huff,” said Chris. He graduated from Pompano Beach High School (class of 1965). After his cross-country trip took him to Alaska, Chris decided to try San Diego. He worked for Home Federal Savings & Loan was promoted, eventually to a branch manager position. “But, I wanted to be self-employed,” Chris said. In the early 1980s, Chris married Signe (together they have five children and nine grandchildren). Also, Chris left Home Fed and founded Joshua Tree Development, a custom home builder. “We built about a dozen or so homes in the North Country, and we lived for several years in one of the homes we built in Cardiff,” said Chris, who has lived in San Marcos for the past 11 years. A few years into building custom homes, mortgage interest rates hit 16 percent and sales slowed. So, Chris founded a property management company called Cal West Properties, which today is now known as Cal West Management & Sales, Inc. Cal West manages 38 homeowner associations (about 2,300 doors). A sister company, Brentwood Management, manages 12 apartment complexes (about 200 doors). “We’ve stayed in business because we’ve been able to adapt to changing marketing conditions,” said Chris, age 69. It’s the same reason why Chris admires NSDCAR. “I’m so proud of our Association because it has demonstrated an incredible ability to change with the times,” he said. “I ended my service as a board member because I could see it was time to make room for younger people. I’m very enthusiastic about the Association’s younger leaders. It’s very encouraging to see younger people get involved and assume leadership positions. There is a great group of new people who will be leading NSDCAR into the future.” Today, Chris still has a camper. Chis and Signe enjoy spending weekends at the Hawk’s Canyon area of the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (the 900-square-mile park stretches from the Riverside County line to the Mexican border in eastern San Diego County). “We sit outside by a fire at night and we’re at peace,” he said. “You won’t believe how beautiful the desert flowers are. The rainy season has given us an exceptional super bloom of wildflowers. It’s incredible green with a beautiful carpet of annuals. The sights are spectacular this year.”