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The official newsletter of the Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS®

November - December 2013

USPS: 017-467

Volume 19, Number 5

Greg Ford Takes the Helm as 2014 GCAAR President The historic Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club was the place to be for the 2013 GCAAR Annual Meeting and Installation of the 2014 officers and Board members on December 5. Built in 1938 as the Bethesda Theater, the venue was one of the era’s Art Deco cinema palaces, and is now the region’s number one live music supper club. The National Historic Register property provided the perfect backdrop as Greg Ford was installed as 2014 GCAAR President. Awards were given to the 2013 Affiliates of the Year P. Joy Siegel, Rookie of the Year Michael Fowler, and REALTOR® of the Year Bonnie Casper. Attendees included Maryland Association of REALTORS® (MAR) President Russ Boyce, CEO Mary Antoun, and a host of special guests from fellow Associations.

2014 GCAAR Board of Directors

2013 REALTOR® of the Year Bonnie Casper and 2013 President Michael McGreevy

Congratulations to the newly-elected officers and directors! OFFICERS:


President Greg Ford President-Elect Suzanne Des Marais Immediate Past President Michael McGreevy Secretary Peg Mancuso Treasurer Tim Knobloch

2013 Rookie of the Year Michael Fowler

Koki Adasi David Bediz Thom Brockett Jamie Coley Tom Daley Dorie Glass Jacque Grenning Sally Hamidi Gwen Henderson Vicky Lobos-Kirker Hildy Pollard Pat Weed

2013 Affiliate of the Year P. Joy Siegel

Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS® 8757 Georgia Avenue, Suite 600 Silver Spring, MD 20910

P. Joy Siegel Named GCAAR Affiliate of the Year GCAAR is pleased to announce P. Joy Siegel as its Affiliate of the Year for 2013. Joy is a real estate attorney in the District of Columbia and Maryland as well as a licensed title agent in both of GCAAR’s jurisdictions. As a member of GCAAR’s Contracts and Clause Committee for over 10 years, she has worked hard on keeping the forms current and effective for membership. Second only to making sure clients have a wonderful settlement experience, her love is being a Continuing Education instructor. Teaching countless classes per year, her goal has always been to make the toughest required classes the most enjoyable. Joy is highly sought after to teach everything from Fair Housing to Social Media. She is the former President and founder of Settlement Pros and will be joining Settlement Ink in 2014.

INSIDE THIS ISSUE Association 3 GCAAR in the 3 Ask the 4 Board 4 Koki Adasi Plays Major 5

Transportation 5 NAR Director’s 6 7 Green 8 GCAAR Cares Year in 9 MC & DC Market 10

Meet Your GCAAR Committees ���������������������������page 14 Public 15 Technology/Tool 16 Legal 20 Education 21 22

Join a Growing Team!


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2013 November - December

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Capital Area REALTOR®

Association NEWS 2013 Board of Directors President Michael McGreevy

President-Elect Gregory Ford Secretary William H. Highsmith Jr. , JD, GRI

GCAAR Welcomes New Emeritus Members! The National Association of REALTORS® Emeritus status is given to those REALTORS® who have 40 years of membership in the national organization. GCAAR is proud to congratulate the following members who have reached Emeritus status:

Frances Carberry Louise Caporaletti Gregory Joseph Irene Heine

William Stuart Nancy Robertson Dorothy Denton

Mary Kay Kadow Terri Robinson Joan Hough-Schelling

Treasurer Tim Knobloch

Immediate Past President Bonnie Casper

GCAAR thanks

Chief Executive Officer Michael Moran

Michael McGreevy


for his leadership

Koki Adasi David Bediz Jamie Coley Thomas Daley Suzanne Des Marais Carter Ferrington Dorie Glass Jacque Grenning Gwen Henderson Mynor Herrera Emiliana Victoria “Vicky” Lobos-Kirker Margaret “Peg” Mancuso

and vision as 2013 GCAAR President!


Bobette Banks

Advertising Representative Arlene Braithwaite

Capital Area REALTOR® (USPS 017-467) is published five times a year by the Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS®, 8757 Georgia Avenue, Suite 600, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Periodicals postage paid at Silver Spring, MD. Member subscriptions account for $10 of each member’s annual dues. Annual subscriptions are available to non-members for $25. Subscription inquiries may be sent to Capital Area REALTOR® at the above address. Copyright© 2013 by the Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS®. All rights reserved. POSTMASTER: SEND ADDRESS CHANGES TO CAPITAL AREA REALTOR®, ATTN: GCAAR, 8757 GEORGIA AVENUE, SUITE 600, SILVER SPRING, MD 20910. The Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS® makes no warranties and assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information contained herein. The opinions expressed herein do not necessary reflect the opinions of the officers, directors or staff of the Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS®. The Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS® accepts submissions of articles and photographs and these items become the property of the The Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS®. The publisher reserves the right of full editorial authority and to decline publication of any article not deemed proper. Deadline for all submissions, including camera-ready advertising on disk or film, is the first of the month prior to publication. Reprint with permission only. Reprint permission may be obtained by contacting the Greater Capital Area Association of REALTORS® at 301.590.2000; via fax at 301.590.2248; or via e-mail at REALTOR® is a registered collective membership mark that identifies and may be used only by real estate professionals who are members of the National Association of REALTORS® and subscribe to its Code of Ethics.

Capital Area REALTOR®

in the


DC Condo Market Continues to Be Hot Washington Business Journal November 13, 2013 GCAAR October housing stats featured

People on the Move – Michael Fowler Named 2013 GCAAR Rookie of the Year Washington Business Journal October 31, 2013 Michael Fowler, GCAAR member featured

People on the Move – Bonnie Casper Named 2013 GCAAR REALTOR® of the Year Washington Business Journal October 30, 2013 Bonnie Casper, GCAAR Immediate Past President featured

The Effect of the Government Shutdown on Real Estate NBC National News Feed October 10, 2013 Suzanne Des Marais, GCAAR President-Elect featured

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2013 2013 November - December


Ask the President Michael McGreevy 2013 GCAAR President Q: Why am I getting emails from the National, Maryland, and DC Associations of REALTORS® asking me to participate in a “Call to Action” about flood insurance legislation? I’ve never had a deal in our area that required flood insurance – this legislation doesn’t affect me! – A long-time agent in Gaithersburg A: Thank you for your question. Before getting involved in the inner workings of the Board, I too questioned the relevance of some of the federal legislation issues that we hear so much about from the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). Why should we speak up about issues that don’t directly affect us? There are three very good reasons why you should answer that Call to Action, or really any Call to Action you get from your REALTOR® associations. The first reason is that issues like flood insurance are decided on a federal level. They are voted on in the House of Representatives and the Senate. Your Representative and Senators get to vote in these decisions, even if the given issue does not directly affect their constituents. Their vote could be the one that makes or breaks the passage of legislation. It’s our job to make sure our elected officials know how an issue affects the real estate market somewhere in the country, even when it’s not in our own backyard. Answering a Call to Action is the easiest and most efficient way to help educate them on these issues.

Secondly, the issues on which NAR takes a position are seriously vetted before it is decided to move forward with support or opposition. An immense amount of research and analysis is done by NAR staff, leadership, and committees to decide which issues are the most important to champion. The issues that are selected greatly affect multiple real estate markets across the country in significant ways. They may not be relevant in every market, but they are important to enough members across the U.S. for NAR to lobby for or against the legislation. And last, but certainly not least, is team work. There are over 1 million REALTORS® across the country. When we all work together we can move mountains. There are times when we need the help of other REALTORS® to move mountains here in the DC area. This is a time when they need our help. All you need to do to help is two clicks of a mouse and you’ve responded to a Call to Action. I can’t think of an easier or more important way to help the team.

Board Briefs The GCAAR Board of Directors met October 4 in our Washington, DC office, and November 22 in Silver Spring. The Board congratulated 2013 Immediate Past President Bonnie Casper on her election as Secretary of the Maryland Association of REALTORS® at its annual conference in September. The Board appointed GCAAR 2005 President Susann Haskins to serve as the District 2 District Vice-President for Maryland Association of REALTORS® for a one-year term beginning October 1, 2013. 2013 Maryland Association of REALTORS® Leadership Academy graduate Cammie Reed visited with the Board to share her experience with the academy. The Board approved the appointment of 2014 President Greg Ford, 2014 PresidentElect Suzanne Des Marais, 2014 Immediate Past President Michael McGreevy, and 2014 Secretary Peg Mancuso as GCAAR’s representatives to the National Association of REALTORS® Board of Directors. The Board congratulates the 2,400+ GCAAR members who have made their 2013 investment in the REALTOR® Party! The Association has exceeded its fair share goal for both Maryland and the District of Columbia. GCAAR members have invested a total of more than $163,000 in 2013. Make your 2014 investment online at 2013 President Michael McGreevy congratulated the following Board members who will be leaving the Board at the end of the year: Immediate Past President Bonnie Casper, Secretary Bill Highsmith, and Directors Carter Ferrington and Mynor Herrera. The Association is grateful for their years of service to the membership and the industry.

Happy Holidays and best wishes for a happy, peaceful, and prosperous New Year!


2013 November - December

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Capital Area REALTOR®

Koki Adasi Plays Major Role at NAR Annual Conference

Koki: I believe the first issue is education. We’re in an industry where we have so many options on where we hang our license and where we do our business, and depending on who’s your mentor or who’s the managing broker in your office really depends on the education you’re going to get in this business. It’s important that we’re advised properly as we help clients with one of the biggest decisions in their lives. Also, with the change in technology over the past few years, I believe our business has changed and our role as a REALTOR® /advisor has changed as well. Consumers have so much more information, and we need to understand our role, not just as someone who can bring you listings, because buyers can find that anywhere, but someone who will help you navigate through the process, negotiate, and go through contracts…so just being more of an advisor in the process is important. CAR: Do you think a national leadership position with NAR is in your future?

Koki Adasi, GCAAR Board Member GCAAR Board Member Koki Adasi stepped onto the national REALTOR® stage last month at the National Association of REALTORS®’ (NAR) 2013 Annual Conference and Expo in San Francisco. Capital Area REALTOR® sat down with Koki at his Long & Foster office in Silver Spring to chat with him about his recent accomplishment. CAR: First of all, congrats on being selected NAR’s 2013 Meetings and Conference Co-Chair. That was quite an honor. What made you want to pursue this position? How did you get selected? Koki: Some of the NAR leadership approached me about taking on this position. I was a bit apprehensive at first because I thought I wouldn’t be able to handle the time commitment, but after I thought more about it, I decided to do it. CAR: What were your major duties in this role? Koki: I had to attend three meetings, the first being in January, which was a two-day meeting, and everything else was done pretty much via email and conference calls. I could not attend the January meeting, because my son had just been born, so I participated via Skype. My duties included coordinating with the entire committee to figure out all of the details for the conference, from keynote speakers, to entertainment, to inspirational speaker…going through things from previous conferences, deciding what classes our members wanted to have, choosing the instructors, room monitors…there are a lot of details that go into it. Deciding the theme and what that will look like is also a big part of it. The committee’s role is to debate and figure out what we’re going to do, and then the staff implements based on our recommendations and the President of NAR’s approval. Throughout the course of the year there were meetings between myself and Steve Goddard (Committee Chair), and the other committee members. We also had to respond to feedback that we got along the process. CAR: How long have you been in the business? What made you choose real estate as a profession? Koki: I’ve been in the real estate business now for seven years. Prior to real estate I did accounting at Clark Construction and also sold life insurance. I wasn’t fulfilled in either position and knew there was a better career out there for me. I had a close friend who I played basketball with and he continually tried to convince me that being a REALTOR® was the way to go. Well, he was right. CAR: What do you think are the most pressing issues facing REALTORS® today?

Capital Area REALTOR®

Koki: I have definitely thought about getting involved on the national level. I think the biggest consideration for me right now is that I’m planning to have more children in the future. I need to make sure that I have time to support my family and spend time with them and also grow my business. I want to make sure that any other responsibilities I take on at a national level will still allow me the time to support those things that are very important in my life. I can see it in the future; I don’t know if it will be two years or 20 years, but I can definitely see that in my future. Having this experience for me was very, very powerful. The last year and a half I have been in Toastmasters, which has helped tremendously. Going through this process as Co-Chair of this committee and speaking in front of thousands of people gave me a lot of confidence and showed me that I can step up to the plate, be a leader, and fulfill a role. It was a great experience for me and will open up a lot of doors for me whether at the national or state level. I am grateful to have had this opportunity and I look forward to what the future has in store.


The Montgomery County Council unanimously approved the Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan at the end of November. The Plan establishes the routes and proposed station locations for a Rapid Transit System (RTS) covering 82 miles with 110 stations, not including the already planned Corridors City Transitway (CCT). This is a huge win for residents and the economic future of the County. When completed, this innovative transportation solution will help ease traffic congestion, allow for the growth of local businesses, and increase the County’s economic tax base. GCAAR has supported the development and implementation of the RTS since its inception and will continue to work with the Council as it reviews funding options for the project.

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Tom Street, Assistant Chief Administrative Officer Montgomery County, with GCAAR members Peg Mancuso, Bonnie Casper, and Harold Huggins

2013 2013 November - December


NAR Director’s Report Michael McGreevy 2013 GCAAR President

$24.7 million in RPAC this year, an 11% increase over 2012. The REALTORS® Relief Foundation generated more than $55,000 in proceeds from its first online auction. Since 2001, the Foundation has distributed $22 million in assistance to REALTORS® and others hit by disasters.

I had the honor and pleasure of representing GCAAR members at the NAR Board of Directors meeting in San Francisco on November 11. We voted on several major issues that will help your national association better serve you, the member, today and in the future. The biggest news was the approval to transform NAR’s headquarters in Chicago into a world-class property. Slated to become the next destination building in the iconic Chicago skyline, this ambitious project will be undertaken with a major partner to construct a REALTOR®-branded, mixed-use, Class A+ building. While the decision to carry out the development is not final, the board vote enables exploration to move forward. NAR’s DC building is the pride of our national association here in our own backyard. This project will improve the recognition of the REALTOR® brand and re-launch REALTOR® pride across the country in a building we will all be proud to call our headquarters. Several policy positions passed at the meeting, including: • Opposing the use of eminent domain to acquire mortgages • Adding an opposition to gender-identity discrimination into NAR’s Fair Housing Policy statement

To help guide the association in the near future, the Board approved a three-year strategic plan. As you can see from the number of actions taken, NAR’s Board is extremely active and always pushing forward to function on the cutting edge of real estate now and for years to come. It has been an honor and pleasure to represent you on the national, state, and local levels this year. I enjoyed hearing from many of you about your ideas, concerns, and constructive feedback on how we are doing and what we can do better in the future. I assure you that you’ve been heard and that your opinions are a valuable part of how your elected leadership works to constantly improve the association’s service to you. Thank you for entrusting me with this great responsibility. Wishing you and yours a happy, healthy, and prosperous holiday season and New Year. Michael McGreevy 2013 GCAAR President and NAR Director

• Clarifying that REALTORS® shouldn’t be penalized when legitimate business practices have an unintended impact on a specific protected class • Supporting legislation preventing buyers from backing out of condo purchases using a disclosure that requires a full lot description. (Full lot descriptions are typically not possible until after project completion.) The Board made a few modifications to NAR’s membership categories, including changing the qualifications for REALTOR® Emeritus members, and approving dues amounts for National Affiliates, Institute Affiliates, and Academic members. Term limits for NAR Treasurer are now set to a single two-year term, and past Treasurers will be designated ex-officio members of the Board of Directors, as is the case with other officers. The bylaws were also clarified to explain that the cost of lockbox services, where it is a service of the local association, may be included in association dues. Always looking for ways to increase the professionalism of members, NAR specified that REALTORS® doing a Broker Price Option (BPO) need to be knowledgeable about the property type and area. Clarifications were made to the Code of Ethics to ensure that only individuals (and not companies, associations, or other entities) can file ethics complaints. The Code was also amended to direct hearing panels to consider a respondent’s prior violations, among other things, when determining how to discipline a member.

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2013 November - December

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New Year, New Products Resolve to Increase Your Productivity with MRIS As the New Year approaches, it’s a great time to think about new ways to save time, make more money and increase your productivity. We’ve compiled this list of some of the newest MRIS products that are available (or will be available soon) to help you streamline your business in 2014. All are included in your MRIS subscription, so make sure you take a few minutes to learn more about each of them.

MRIS Marketing Center (Powered by Imprev) Marketing yourself and your listings has never been easier! With the MRIS Marketing Center, a new product included in your MRIS subscription, you can create stunning marketing materials quickly using your own high quality photos or listing photos imported directly from Keystone. As part of your MRIS subscription, you have access to 20 attractive designs and four drip email campaigns. Visit to learn more.

ShowingTime for the MLS ShowingTime for the MLS allows real estate professionals to share and access showing information from Keystone, Matrix, and the MRIShomes™ mobile app in real time. This makes it easier to get showings by giving other agents 24/7 access to request showings online. Use of ShowingTime is optional, meaning that listing agents can choose to turn on ShowingTime for their listings. Even if a listing agent turns on ShowingTime for his or her listings, the showing instruction fields will remain on Matrix displays and reports. Visit to learn more.

MRIShomes™ Mobile App The MRIShomes™ Mobile App will soon include the ability to update your listings right from a mobile device. You will be able to update common listing changes such as pricing, status, expiration date and public remarks for your listings right from the app itself. Stay tuned for the release of this new feature!

Matrix is Changing! Matrix has some changes and enhancements scheduled for release early in the year. Sign up for the MRIS 301: What’s New and What’s Coming class on MRIS-U at to make sure you are prepared for the changes ahead. Videos will also be available 24/7 on in the coming weeks. One of the best ways to stay current with MRIS news, product sneak peeks and exclusive promotions and events is to interact with us on our social media channels. Visit us at, like MRIS on Facebook, and follow @MRIS_REal_News on Twitter to keep in touch with MRIS. We wish you a successful New Year!


$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ WIN $250! $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ STEP 1: Find a GOLD STAR STICKER in this issue of CAR*

STEP 2: Call Debbie Bell at 301.590.8771

STEP 3: Collect your $250!


* Actual Gold Star Sticker is used, not just a star graphic. Only 1 winner per issue. Winner must present the issue of CAR with the sticker to claim winnings. If no winner is identified by CAR’s next mailing, the winnings are forfeited.

Capital Area REALTOR®

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2013 2013 November - December



may be tax benefits to donating used building materials to salvage organizations.

The Green Committee recently completed their second set of recommendations to make the MRIS “greener.” They focused on including more environmentally-friendly fields, with comprehensive and user-friendly definitions. GCAAR will continue to work with MRIS on this project in the future.

If you are an existing or new homeowner, consider getting an energy audit; the results will help you understand how best to realize financial benefits from increased energy efficiency.

Featured Green Field Recommendations Low Flow Fixture A faucet with aerator installed to reduce the flow of water but not reduce water pressure. Multi-Pane Windows A window with more than one pane of glass. Dual pane windows are fairly common, and triple-pane windows can sometimes be found in cold climates. On Demand Water Heater A device that heats water rapidly as it is dispensed from the faucet, and eliminates the need for a conventional tank water heater. Passive Solar A type of design which takes maximum advantage of the sun’s energy to help warm the home in winter and helps to redirect or block that energy to reduce cooling needs in the summer.

Green Retrofits: Helping Your Buyers & Sellers Understand Their Value With the increasing popularity of green homes, more options for financing green retrofits of older homes have become available for homeowners. That is what guest speaker, Mike Italiano, one of the founders of the Green Building Council, discussed with the Green Committee at its October meeting.

Will I make my money back when I sell? It’s always hard to know if you’ll realize your investment on an improvement, but data from the National Association of REALTORS® indicates buyers are interested in green home benefits and certain studies have even indicated they sell faster.

How can a home with green features be marketed, or found by buyers? Sellers: • Provide a list of your home’s green features and accompanying documents for verification, so your REALTOR® can truthfully market those items as green • Ask your REALTOR® about the Appraisal Institute’s Residential Green and Energy Efficient Addendum, so the added value is recognized wherever possible Buyers: • Tell your REALTOR® about the green features you seek in your new home • Ask your REALTOR® about the value green features can add

Councilmember Anita Bonds Speaks with REALTORS®

Green retrofitting generally means incorporating more energy-efficient features into an existing home to increase sustainability. This can range from upgrading windows to putting in switching to green power sources such as solar. As market demands for such improvements have increased, local and state government support in DC and Maryland has also gained traction.

DCAR’s October Speaker Series featured Councilmember Anita Bonds (D - At Large) discussing DC’s budget autonomy, affordable housing, green development, tax structure revisions and more. The federal government shutdown was a big discussion point, particularly how it damaged DC’s economy. Councilmember Bonds echoed the sentiments of Mayor Gray and fellow District officials who stormed Capitol Hill to implore Congress to reach an agreement and end the shutdown.

Incorporating the value of green features into appraisals, however, remains a challenge. Understanding the value of adding green features to a home is not always easily understood by the general public. That’s why we’ve outlined some of the most frequently asked questions to help your buyers and sellers!

If I add green features to my home, will it be expensive? As with any improvement, there are costs to greening your home, but you may be able to minimize the initial investment while realizing energy, health, and landscaping savings. Governments, utility companies, and mortgage lenders may offer incentives, and there L-R: 2013 DCAR President-Elect Bonnie Roberts-Burke, Anita Bonds, 2013 DCAR President Bo Menkiti


2013 November - December

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GCAAR Cares Year in Review

GCAAR Cares organized the 4th Annual Silent Auction at REALTOR® Fest where GCAAR Board Member Jacque Grenning bids on silent auction items.

(L-R): Staff Liason Debbie Bell with Silent Auction Chair and raffle winner Dina Paxenos

Fair Housing Calendar Poster Contest Reception

Past President Bonnie Casper poses with Charlie Maier and Barbara Goldberg Goldman at the Affordable Housing Conference of Montgomery County.

GCAAR Cares helped fund the Life Skills, Education & Arts program (LEAP) at Calvary Women’s Services where Lorna is the Employment Program Chef.

Grant recipient, Dwelling Place, provides twin beds for families in transitional housing.

GCAAR Cares Names 2013 Grant Recipients GCAAR Cares is pleased to announce the 2013 grant recipients: Affordable Housing Conference of Montgomery County Calvary Women’s Services Dwelling Place (L-R): Adriana Clapper, Board Member Gwen Henderson, Charles Clapper, and Bill Rozek volunteer at Rebuilding Together® Montgomery County.

GCAAR Cares Committee member and House Captain Jason Bradley (center) with fellow volunteers. More than 30 volunteers participated in the 2013 Rebuilding Together® project.

GCAAR Cares grant recipient Friendship Place visits GCAAR Cares to talk about the Neighbors First program.

GCAAR Cares grant recipient Friendship Place hosts thank you reception.

Friendship Place Hope and a Home Pathways to Housing

2013 GCAAR Cares grant presented to Miriam Gandell (center) of the Dwelling Place.  

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2013 2013 November - December


MC & DC Market Reports Fred Flick, Ph.D. Consultant/Housing Economist

Year-to-date through October, the Maryland housing market has shown improved growth. Property sales totaled 51,811 units, and they were up 14.6% from the first ten months of 2012. Furthermore, the average price of $307,091 rose 4.5% from the comparable 2012 figure; and, the median price of $260,725 increased 5.7%. Nevertheless, the price rises are slightly below those of the earlier months of this year. For the month of October, sales totaled 5,128 homes and jumped 19% from a year before. Statewide, the October average home price came in at $285,708 – only 1.3% above a year before. Correspondingly, the median price of $242,355 rose only about 1.1%. On the supply side, the overall statewide active inventory at the end of October included 26,940 properties, equating to a 5-month supply at the October sales rate.


In Montgomery County the total October unit sales volume came in at 915 properties, jumping 26% from a year ago. The sold dollar volume totaled $440,764,666, bouncing almost 37% from a year before. The average sold price came in at $481,710 – rising 8.5%; and, the median price of $379,000 increased 6.6% from a year ago. Properties turned over faster than earlier in the year. October average days on the market totaled 46 -- 22% below those of a year before. Furthermore, the ratio of average sales price to average original listing price was 96% -- up about 1% from last year. Finally, active listings totaled 2,434 properties, and this level was 11% above that of October 2012.

With good sales rates, given the tight inventory, single-family prices have continued to move up at near double-digit rates. Year to date, the average sales price was $572,065, and the median was $462,000. In 2012, the average single-family home sold for $529,026 and the median priced property cost $425,000. Through October, average and median prices are up 8.1% and 8.7%, respectively. Overall, these are pretty good year-to-date appreciation rates.

OCTOBER SINGLE-FAMILY HOMES For Montgomery County single-family homes, the October year-to-date settlements and contracts paces rose significantly from those of October 2012. Year-to-date single-family settlements (7,443) jumped 14.5% and yearto-date contracts (7,889) moved up 9% from a year before. The monthly figures increased at similar rates. Monthly settlements (667) bounced 20% from a year before; and, new contracts for the month (795) moved-up over 9%.

OCTOBER CONDOMINIUMS AND COOPERATIVES Through October, there were 2,314 condo/coop settlements -- a jump of over 22% from a year ago. To show how strong the early fall has been, the 248 monthly settlements leapt 45% from the level of October 2012. Similarly, early fall contracts also have performed well. Year-to-date contracts for October (2,482) jumped almost 17% from a year before; and, new contracts (267) bounded 22.5%.

The inventory trend, as normal, slipped a bit in October but was still above the levels of spring and summer. October total single-family active listings of 1,971 properties were 8% above those of last October, but below the level of this September. Nevertheless, the 974 monthly new listings in October still were 20% above the level of a year ago. However, at the October contracts pace, there was only a 2.5 months supply of properties; but, this figure is higher than those for last spring.


2013 November - December

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Capital Area REALTOR®

Moreover, county inventory has greatly exceeded the levels of the same time last year. October condo/coop active listings (500) came in at 22.5% above last October -- just below September and higher than all of the other months back to October 2012. Furthermore, October new listings (315) bounced almost 31% above last year’s monthly figure. At the October contracts pace, there was about a 1.9-months supply of properties. This ratio is higher than earlier in the year; but the inventory is still tight compared to historical norms.

Furthermore, the District’s single-family inventory has finally exceeded the levels of the previous year. October total active listings totaled 710 properties -- 4% above those in October 2012. Although down a bit from this September, it was still an improvement over the spring and early summer months. Moreover, new single-family listings for the month (538) were up about 31% from a year before. Clearly, the seller’s market has finally pumped-up listings based on the early summer sales rates.

The fall condo/coop market has also shown moderately high price appreciation rates. Both average and median prices rose significantly. For all of 2012, the average and median sales prices were $250,738 and $208,225, respectively. Thus far, through October, the average condo/coop price of $266,718 was up almost 6.4% from 2012; and, the median price of $219,900 was over 5.6% above the 2012 median. Pent-up demand and tight inventory have been a boon to sellers.

Nevertheless, the tight inventory has continued to push-up price appreciation rates. In 2012, single-family average prices ($655,645) had jumped 11% compared to the average for 2011; and, median prices ($530,000) had bounced up 18%. So far this year, the average singlefamily home in the District cost $716,552 with the median at $599,950. Through October, these prices yielded appreciation rates of 9.3% and 13.2%, respectively. While they are below the 2012 rates, what is important is that the unit volume has greatly increased even at these prices.


The District of Columbia unit sales pace was strong even into the early fall. In October, it totaled 663 properties, rising 26% from a year ago. And, the October sold dollar volume was $366,531,598 – leaping almost 31% from the previous October. The average sales price was $552,838 – up 4% from a year before; and the median price was $455,000 up about 2.3%. Furthermore, the average sales price to average original listing price ratio came in at 98% – up almost 2 percentage points from last October. Finally, end of October inventory included 1,356 total actives and that figure was down only 4.2% from a year ago. OCTOBER SINGLE-FAMILY HOMES The Washington, DC single-family sales market has continued to significantly improve, compared to last year. Year-to-date settlements (3,414) jumped 11% and new settlements in October (360) were up over 34% from the same period in 2012. Similarly, year-to-date contracts (3,692) rose 7%; and, October single-family contracts (447) bumped 12.6% above a year ago.

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2013 2013 November - December


MC & DC Market Reports, continued from page 11

OCTOBER CONDOMINIUMS AND COOPERATIVES The DC condominium and cooperative market is heading for a strong finish just like the single-family market. Year-to-date October settlements (3,221) leapt 23% and contracts (3,404) jumped 18% from a year ago. Moreover, monthly settlements of 305 properties bounded 18% from a year before. To the same extent, monthly contracts (373) vaulted almost 24% over those of October 2012.

NATIONAL HOUSING RESALES Total existing home resales through October totaled 5.12 million units (at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, or saar). The monthly figure was 3.2% below the September sales rate, but was 6% above the rate for October 2012. The median price came in at $199,500 -- up 12.8% from a year before, with the $247,300 average up 10%. At the end of October, there was a 2.13 millionunit inventory (saar), which represented a 5-month supply of homes. The late spring and summer levels were slightly better than the typical 4.5-month supply in the early part of the year. Nevertheless, another month’s supply would be better for choice and sales in the marketplace. October condo/coop inventory was down a bit from September, but still was above the levels from last November through this August. So far, January logged the lowest level at just 465 actives. Then, there was steady improvement to a total of 684 October listings -- only 3% below a year before. And for the month of October, new listings (505) were above the comparable 2012 figure by a staggering 40%. Nevertheless, at the current contracts pace, there was only about a 1.8-month supply of properties. There was substantial improvement over the ten months, but still inventory is way below historical norms.

For the single-family resales market, October sales declined 4.1% (4.49 million, saar) from September, but rose 5.2% above the pace of October 2012. Moreover, the single-family median price ($199,500) bumped 12.7% and the average ($247,200) moved up 10% from a year ago. In the existing condo/coop market, sales (630,000 saar) rose 3.3% from September, but jumped 12.5% from October 2012. Furthermore, the national condo/coop median price came in at $199,200 -- up 13.1% from a year before. The average price ($247,800) increased 11%. ECONOMIC GROWTH AND JOBS The Bureau of Economic Analysis advance estimate for 2013 third quarter real GDP growth showed an increase of 2.8%. This ‘advance’ figure will be revised at least two times over the next few months. The first quarter of 2013 came in at 1.1% with the second quarter at 2.5%. In general, the economy has been hovering around a 2.4% average real growth rate over the past three years. However, with the impacts of the sequester expected to hit soon, it is likely that 2013 will not grow as rapidly as the 2.8% rate in 2012. Plus, there are still economic troubles in Europe and a real estate bubble in China.

Continuing a recent trend, lower priced units have seen more appreciation. So far through October, condo/coop prices averaged $449,658 and they were up 4.7% from the 2012 figure. However, through October, the median price of $450,000 rose about 6.6% compared to the 2012 median price.

The early November jobs report indicated that non-farm payroll employment increased by 204,000 new jobs (around 200,000 is considered good) in October. However, this still left the unemployment rate unchanged at 7.3%. Many of the unemployed were on layoffs, including Federal furloughs. Employment increased in leisure and hospitality, retail, professional and technical services, manufacturing, and health care. The workforce still had significant numbers of long-term unemployed (4.1 million) and those working part-time and still looking for jobs (8.1 million). While there were no discernible impacts of the government shutdown on the employment situation, we still have a significant long-term unemployment problem. Unfortunately, it will take several more years of decent job growth to get the unemployment rate down to the 5% to 6% range. The Commerce Department recently reported that retail sales were up 0.4% in October. However, the big banks are expecting the weakest holiday shopping season since 2008. Consumer sentiment has been dropping, and many stores are starting discounts before Thanksgiving and actually staying open on Thanksgiving Day. Nevertheless, housing and car sales have been strong this year, and credit card debt has been declining since summer. Overall debt is 11% lower than at the summer peak in 2008, before the economic crash. The National Retail Federation is predicting higher growth in sales this year than for last year. Go figure!


2013 November - December

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MONETARY POLICY, THE DEBT, INTEREST RATES, AND INFLATION The appointment of Janet Yellen to the chairmanship of the Fed will not likely alter the recent policy trends. She was one of very few economists who saw the coming real estate and stock bubbles, and has steadfastly backed Ben Bernanke’s quantitative easing strategies. Yellen is a liberal Keynesian and will not do anything that will cause the economy to worsen. However, it is likely there will be some slowing in the rate of Treasury and mortgage bond purchases starting sometime in 2014 -likely spring. This expectation has helped the stock market reach new highs, as the anticipation is for only a slow rise in interest rates. When the Fed starts the “taper,” it is likely that there will be some pullback in stock and bond prices; however, the timing and extent is largely unknowable. Higher-than-wished-for unemployment and declining inflation can cause the Fed’s decisions to be postponed. Nevertheless, it seems likely that some tapering will begin next year; but, for now, the economy is still growing slowly and unemployment is too high.

Second Annual GCAAR Bowling Party Delivers Fun for All Thank you to everyone who came out to support GCAAR at our second annual bowling party at Bowlmor Rockville (formerly 300 Shady Grove) on October 24. Special thanks to our sponsors: Apex Home Loans, Embrace Home Loans, Gemini Title & Escrow, GPN Title, McLean Mortgage, and MRIS. “Like” us on GCAAR’s Facebook page, if you haven’t already to see additional pictures from the event.

MORTGAGE INTEREST RATES The Freddie Mac survey for the third week of November showed that average mortgage interest rates slipped a bit based on weaker economic data. In these recent results, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.22%, while 1-year adjustables (ARMs) averaged 2.61%. Fifteen-year loans came in at 3.27% and 5/1-yr ARMs were affordable at 2.95%. These rates were lower than the rates in mid-summer. However, Freddie Mac expects long-term fixed rate financing rates to rise in the near future as the Fed starts to taper securities purchases. CONSUMER PRICES AND ENERGY COSTS The October Consumer Price Index increased only 1% over the past year – a full percentage point under the Fed’s desired rate of annual inflation. Furthermore, on a monthly basis, the overall CPI index decreased by 0.1% from September to October – a negative 1.2% annual rate if continued over the next 11 months. During this period, energy prices declined, but food costs rose modestly. When food and energy are taken out of the October index, the “core” inflation still was only 1.7%, compared to a year before.

L-R: Michael McGreevy, Lois Chelec, Ellen Katz, Anna Masica, Leslie Friedsen, Debra Infanti

Examining the key components of the index over the year past: food prices edged up 1.3%; housing shelter costs (mostly rents) rose 2.3%; but, apparel prices declined 0.2%. While medical care services rose 2.9%, medical care commodities rose only 0.5% from October 2012. Energy commodities dropped 9.5% -- gasoline slipped 10.1%, and fuel oil fell 4.6%. However, energy services (electricity and natural gas) increased 3.3%. These declines in energy costs are helping consumers afford other goods and services.

Bruce Cotting from Real Living at Home makes his statement.

THE BOTTOM LINE The fall 2013 market has maintained the good momentum that developed in the summer months. However, both property types and both jurisdictions have seen strong double-digit sales rates and price rises. Nevertheless, low inventory continues to be a problem across all properties and areas, but the sales volume has bumped up, even with some pretty good price bumps. There are likely to be some increases in interest rates in 2014, as the Fed cuts back on buying Treasury securities and mortgage bonds. Also, there will be some corrections in stock and bond values. However, the magnitudes will not be anything like the recession of 5 years ago. The economy has grown over that period and doesn’t have the bubble problems that we experienced then. However, the political scene in Washington will affect our local market. We are still waiting on the impact of the full kick-in of the sequester. And, while the White House and Congress hammered out a recent short-term resolution, next year there will be another big budget fight. But, it is unlikely that the government will shutdown again, as the public was very disapproving. Nevertheless, the national outlook is still positive and the local economy still will be good. The year 2014 should be solid, but with slightly slower growth rates.

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Bowlers hope for “strikes” from fellow team members.

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MEET YOUR GCAAR COMMITTEES Community Service Committee The Community Service Committee gives REALTORS® the opportunity to be a part of the greater community and show off how they’re already contributing. In addition, the committee raises money for the GCAAR Cares fund, runs the association’s charitable grant program, and recognizes members who contribute to the community. The committee meets monthly. Chair: Lynette Alexander Vice Chair: Jason Bradley

Contracts and Clause Committee The Contracts and Clause Committee reviews the association’s current standardized forms, makes recommendation on revisions, and creates new forms as determined by market conditions and changing regulations. The committee meets monthly.

Chair: Marie Shannon, CBR Vice Chair: Ellen Katz, GRI

2013 Roster Cuvator “Q” Armstrong Katelyn Archer Briana Ayala San Luisa Barnes-Mosaid Thomas Bennetts, CBR, CRS, GRI John Clapp Adriana Clapper Charles Clapper Gwen Henderson, Board Liaison Constantina “Dina” Paxenos Marlene Trimble Luba Vidgop Barg (deceased)

2013 Roster

Kristen Williams Edward Wood, CBR, GRI

James M. Coley, Jr Christopher Darby Anthony DeVol Carter Ferrington Amy Fischer, CBR, CRS, GRI Jeffrey Ganz, GRI Stanley Goldstein Susann Haskins, ABR, CBR, CRS, GRI Vincent Hurteau, CBR Angela Jones Arthur Konopka Jill Michaels Marjorie Rosner Randy Rothstein L-R: Staff liaison, Sandra Hargis; Chair, Marie Shannon; Vice Chair, Joy Siegel, Esq. Ellen Katz Patrick Weed, CBR, CRS, SIOR

Communications Committee The Communications Committee reviews and recommends communication delivery methods and contributes editorial content for the association’s print and online presence. The committee meets monthly.

L-R: Staff Liaison, Debbie Bell; Lyn Alexander, Chair; Jason Bradley, Vice Chair; Staff Coordinator, JoAnne Joseph

Chair: Mynor Herrera Vice Chair: Joy Liberti

2013 Roster Lyn Alexander Jessica Evans Ricki Gerger Jerri Jones Danai Mattison Dennis Melby

L-R: Staff liaison, Bobette Banks; Mynor Herrera, Chair; Joy Liberti, Vice Chair


2013 November - December

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Public Policy

REAL Advocacy for REALTORS®

Check out GCAAR’s bi-monthly Legislative and Public Policy Report at for a full list of federal, state, and local legislation being reviewed by the Government Affairs Department. You can also email or with comments or questions!

ON THE HILL Tax Talk for 2013: 3.8% Tax Redux The new 3.8% tax took effect on January 1, 2013 and a limited group of taxpayers may be seeing it when they file their 2013 returns. Rumors still abound on this one. Here are the facts: What is it? The 3.8% or “Medicare” tax was enacted along with the 2010 health care legislation to generate revenue for the Medicare Trust Fund that is part of the Social Security System. Who does it affect? The 3.8% tax ONLY applies to the “unearned” income portion for filers with Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) of more than $200,000 ($250,000 joint return). “Unearned” means the income an individual derives from investing capital (including capital gains), dividends, and interest income. How does this affect real estate sales? The 3.8% is neither a real estate “sales tax” nor a real estate transfer tax. Any capital gain you realize from the sale of a property is a component of that year’s AGI. If you sell your principal residence, you will still receive the full benefit of the $250,000 (single tax return)/$500,000 (joint tax return) exclusion on the sale of that home. Will it apply to rental income from my investment properties? Maybe. Net rental income will be subject to the tax if your AGI exceeds $200K/$250K. Net rental income is calculated by taking your gross rental income and subtracting all allowable expenses (depreciation, cost of repairs, property taxes, etc.). However, the tax does not apply if the ownership and operation of real estate you own is your sole occupation. Will I lose the Mortgage Interest Deduction? No. The MID is unchanged. No cap was imposed on any itemized deductions. Remember, taxes will vary from individual to individual and only a licensed tax professional or attorney should advise on the law. Learn more about the 3.8% and other federal issues affecting real estate professionals at

MARYLAND GENERAL ASSEMBLY The MD General Assembly reconvenes January 8, 2014 and the Montgomery County State Delegation held its Legislative Priorities Hearing this past November. GCAAR’s 2012 President Bonnie Casper presented the 2014 REALTOR® legislative priorities including:

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Budget and Transportation REALTORS® want transportation funding to remain front and center in long-term planning discussions. Looking for new transportation revenues and preventing the diversion of transportation funds is particularly important. Agency MD was one of the first states to modernize its agency law, but portions of the law need updating. During the session the Maryland Association of REALTORS® (MAR) will be proposing changes to the law, including clarifying when an agency relationship starts and resolving conflicting terminology. HOA and Condo REALTORS® have seen drastic increases in miscellaneous fees relating to the release of HOA/Condo documents during real estate transactions. These burdensome fees can be excessive and must be paid up front, which can delay settlement. GCAAR is exploring solutions to the cost issues associated with these important documents. Visit MAR’s Government Affairs section at in the coming months to keep up with the MD state legislation we will be working on this session.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY For up-to-date information on Montgomery County legislation, visit the County’s website at Tax Credits for Accessibility Features Installing “accessibility” features in existing residences and new single-family homes (such as ramps, alarms for those with sensory disabilities, and elevators) will soon qualify for property tax credits in Montgomery County. The legislation’s goal is to increase the number of homes with features that improve access and comfort for seniors and individuals with mobility impairments. Credits may be as high as $2,000 for new homes, and up to $2,500 for existing homes in any given tax year. (Effective July 2014) Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Program Approved The County is establishing a PACE program to assist qualifying commercial property owners in making energy improvements. PACE creates a favorable-term loan program that owners repay with their property taxes. The great part is that nearly any equipment or material intended to decrease a building’s energy consumption will qualify, including insulation, storm windows, and water efficiency devices. Similar PACE programs can be found around the country. Government officials are developing additional programs tailored to Montgomery County’s commercial property environment, including a revolving loan fund. (Effective July 2014) Both the Accessibly Feature Tax Credit and PACE Program bills were supported by GCAAR. continued on page 16

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DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA For additional information visit

The Uphill Battle to Lower Recordation and Transfer Taxes A single lower rate for recordation and transfer taxes – that’s the simple request the DC Association of REALTORS® (DCAR) has been making to DC’s Tax Revision Commission. Commissioners did not seem inclined to make any major policy shifts, so we amped up our grassroots efforts with member surveys and outreach to back-up our economic research. DCAR Public Policy Vice-Chair Thais Austin urged Commissioners to lower transfer taxes for move-up buyers, as high taxes discourage sellers from repurchasing within the District. Staff lobbied to lighten the recordation tax burden, a huge barrier to entry for first-time homebuyers. Both proposals ignited the Commissioners’ interest, along with a more revenue neutral approach to eliminate the “bump-up” at $400,000 for residential properties. Stay tuned to hear how it all turns out - the Commission is expected to make recommendations to the DC Council in early January. Disclosure, Disclosures, Disclosures—First Lead, What’s Next? Confused about DC’s new lead disclosure requirements? You’re not alone. DCAR’s November Speaker Series featured an information session with the District Department of the Environment (DDOE) to help REALTORS® comply with the regulations updated this past summer. If you missed the session you can still get the information at including comprehensive resources on how to navigate all the paperwork and FAQs for property managers. DCAR and DDOE will continue working together to simplify the next rendition of the DC lead disclosure form.

REALTORS® be warned— additional disclosure requirements may be coming. The DC Council is considering air pollution legislation, which includes two additional disclosure requirements for residential properties. If passed, owners would Pierre Erville, Associate Director; Amber Sturdivant, have to provide written Chief Compliance Officer; DC’s Lead and Healthy disclosures to tenants or Housing Division buyers if there is a known presence of elevated levels of radon or indoor mold in the property. DCAR is working closely with coalition partners to address any possible environmental hazards without complicated legislation. Real Property Tax Sales get an Overhaul An emergency moratorium on tax sales of residential properties was passed after media sources revealed predatory debt collection practices. The moratorium’s intent is to freeze DC tax sales for senior citizens, veterans, or the disabled, as well as cap attorney fees and establish thresholds of taxes owed for a property to go to tax sale. As the Council considered permanent legislation on the issue, DCAR submitted testimony encouraging overall improvements to the administration of real property tax. We firmly believe it is critical to have streamlined and consumer friendly systems in place in the processing of real property taxes!

Technology / Tool Box Be Careful What You Pin Yes, just like any other social site, your Pinterest content could open you up to legal trouble. Here’s how to be safe. By Graham Wood, REALTOR® Magazine You knew this was coming: Yes, there are legal concerns when it comes to pinning photos on Pinterest. As much as real estate is a photo-centric business, you have to be careful where you get your content for your Pinterest page. Grabbing photos from the Internet for which you don’t own the copyright and pinning them, for example, could leave you open to legal action by the rightful owner. Kyle-Beth Hilfer, a New York–based advertising law attorney with Collen IP, says agents are safe pinning photos that are their own. That means photos that the agents took themselves. But what about photos that they hired a professional photographer to shoot? That can get a little murky. “Assuming the photographer is working as an independent contractor and not an employee, the agent would need to have the photographer sign what is known as a ‘work for hire’ agreement before the work is done, or assign the copyright to the agent,” Hilfer says. “In the absence of one of those documents, the photographer owns the work. In the alternative, the photographer could license the copyright to the agent as part of the compensation package. Without ownership or a license to the copyright, the agent would have no right to pin the photo on Pinterest.”


2013 November - December

Even re-pinning photos can come with a risk. Pinterest’s terms of service state that users who pin photos to their pinboard automatically grant other Pinterest users the right to re-pin their content. BUT… “It’s not a high risk to re-pin the photo, assuming — and this is a big assumption — that the original poster had rights to the photograph in the first place,” Hilfer says. “On the other hand, if the original poster pinned a photograph to which he had no rights, your re-pin could theoretically be a problem. … The problem for the agent is that it’s impossible to know who owns the copyright, what resources the owner has, and his level of litigiousness. Therefore, the safest option is to use photographs of listings to which you, as the agent, have a license or ownership rights.” Hilfer offers a possible solution to the issue of copyright for all real estate agents wishing to post and share content on Pinterest, albeit a little cumbersome. “One long-term solution is for the industry to create a database of listings with photographers submitting official photographs of listings for which they have been compensated, and agents pinning from that database,” she explains. “This would take some organization and long-term planning on the part of REALTORS® in certain geographic regions. It may not be realistic to plan for this kind of solution unless or until an industry member is caught up in a lawsuit.” Graham Wood is a senior editor for REALTOR® Magazine. He can be reached at

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Legal Hotline By Chris Darby, Tom Muldoon and John Nalls of Counselors Title, LLC, and Pardo & Drazin, LLC, General Counsel Below are some questions answered on the GCAAR and DCAR Legal Hotlines. The answers provided here are the opinions of the authors, are for informational purposes, and are only for GCAAR members. Neither Counselors Title, LLC, nor Pardo & Drazin, LLC is providing legal advice, but rather providing a general statement of law. No lawyer/client relationship is - or will be - established as a result of the material which follows. Readers are encouraged to retain their own counsel for their specific questions. Answers may have been edited for formatting purposes.

Email the Legal Hotline at or call 202-686-0100. Maryland Legal Hotline Question: Is the Montgomery County REA disclosure addendum required in an estate sale situation where the seller is an heir of the estate? Answer: Yes. Although an estate seller is exempt by statute from providing a Maryland Residential Property Disclosure and Disclaimer Statement (GCAAR Form 912) under Section10-702 of the Real Property Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland (transfer by a fiduciary in the course of administration of a decedent’s estate), the disclosures and representations contained in the Government Regulations, Easements and Assessments Disclosure and Addendum (GCAAR FORM 900) apply to all sellers and thus are required in Montgomery County sales. Question: In the Home Inspection Contingency, if a Buyer requests a closing cost credit in lieu of repair, can the Seller under Paragraph 2.A.c. cancel the contract on the 3rd day following the delivery of the request for the closing cost credit unless the Buyer withdraws the closing cost request? Answer: No. If the parties have agreed to the terms of Paragraph 2 (“Home Inspection Contingency”) of the Addendum of Clauses (GCAAR Form 1332) and Buyer has provided a copy of the report and Home Inspection Notice (GCAAR Form 1344) to Seller requesting a credit pursuant to subparagraph A, Seller may only either accept the offer contained in that Notice or make another offer. If Seller makes another offer and Buyer accepts it, the parties are bound. If Buyer counters Seller’s offer, Seller may then at that time deliver notice that the contract will become void at 9 p.m. on the 3rd day following Delivery, unless the Buyer delivers to the Seller notice of acceptance of the last delivered offer. If Buyer does not accept Seller’s prior offer within that time, the contract is then void. Question: Is “hard money” financing considered cash or conventional? Does an offer that is “not contingent on financing” imply that the buyer will purchase the property even if the “hard money” financing is not available? Answer: Hard money financing is neither a conventional loan nor cash. A “hard money” loan is typically issued by a private investor or company. Interest rates are typically higher than conventional loans because of the higher risk taken by the lender. Typically borrowers use hard money loans when they would/could not qualify for a conventional loan. If there is no financing contingency, the buyer must purchase the property whether or not they qualify for a loan, hard money or otherwise. If they were unable to secure a loan, they would need to purchase the property with cash. DC Legal Hotline Question: I have a seller who lives overseas and wants to move back to DC, maybe just temporarily. She is renting the property and has a month-to-month tenant. I understand when a contract purchaser gives notice it is a 90-day notice to vacate, but when an owner gives notice is it a 30-day notice to vacate?

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Answer: Pursuant to the District of Columbia Housing Regulations: 4302.1 In order to be valid, a notice to vacate shall include the following: (a) A statement detailing the factual basis on which the housing provider relies, including references to the specific provisions of Title V of the Act on which the claim for eviction is grounded; (b) The minimum time to vacate (under § 501 of the Act); (c) A statement that the housing accommodation is registered with the Rent Administrator, and the registration number, or a statement that the accommodation is exempt from registration, and the basis for the exemption; and (d) A statement that a copy of the notice to vacate is being furnished to the Rent Administrator including the address and telephone number of the Rental Accommodations and Conversion Division (RACD). Per the act the notices to vacate for personal use and occupancy of either the owner or contract purchaser is 90 days. Question: The owner has also asked if she is in violation of the law if she changed her mind and decided to re-rent the property after moving back in. I was told that when giving the notice to vacate the owner must agree that the property cannot be rented for at least a year. Answer: That is correct. The Code specifically prohibits the seller who takes the property back for personal use and occupancy to the then rerent for a year. (text continues) DIVISION VII. PROPERTY TITLE 42. REAL PROPERTY SUBTITLE VII. RENTAL HOUSING CHAPTER 35. RENTAL HOUSING GENERALLY SUBCHAPTER V. EVICTIONS; RETALIATORY ACTION; AND OTHER MATTERS § 42-3505.01. Evictions (d) A natural person with a freehold interest in the rental unit may recover possession of a rental unit where the person seeks in good faith to recover possession of the rental unit for the person’s immediate and personal use and occupancy as a dwelling. The housing provider shall serve on the tenant a 90-day notice to vacate in advance of action to recover possession of the rental unit in instances arising under this subsection. No housing provider shall demand or receive rent for any rental unit which the housing provider has repossessed under this subsection during the 12-month period beginning on the date the housing provider recovered possession of the rental unit. A stockholder of a cooperative housing association with a right of possession in a rental unit may exercise the rights of a natural person with a freehold interest under this subsection.

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Jan. & Feb. Education & Event Schedule Unless otherwise noted, all classes listed will be held at the GCAAR Conference Center, 8757 Georgia Ave., Suite 600, Silver Spring, MD. Please check our website at for more updates and additions. This schedule is subject to change. January 6, 2014 Maryland Code of Ethics & Predatory Lending CEU: 3 hours MD (Required) & 3 hours DC (Elective) Instructor: Jill Michaels Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. January 6, 2014 New Member Orientation CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Jill Michaels Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. January 7, 2014 MREC Agency – Residential CEU: 3 hours MD (Required) & DC (Elective) Instructor: Al Monshower Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. January 7, 2014 Legal & Legislative Update (2009-2012) CEU: 3 hours MD (Required) & DC (Elective) Instructor: Al Monshower Time: 1:30 – 4:30 p.m. January 9, 2014 Understanding Credit Reports CEU: 3 hours MD, VA & DC (Elective) Instructor: Michael Chelst Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. January 10, 2014 How to Keep Your Clients (You) Out of Court CEU: 3 hours MD & DC (Elective) Instructor: Gary Hardy Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. January 10, 2014 Maryland Fair Housing CEU: 1.5 hours MD (Required) & DC (Elective) Instructor: Colleen Smyth Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. January 13, 2014 Financing Issues/Update CEU: 3 hours DC (Required), VA & MD (Elective) Instructor: Jim Semeyn Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. January 13, 2014 VA Financing CEU: 3 hours MD & DC (Elective) Instructor: Jim Semeyn Time: 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.


2013 November - December

January 17, 2014 Maryland Code of Ethics & Predatory Lending CEU: 3 hours MD (Required) & 3 hours DC (Elective) Instructor: Jill Michaels Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. *GCAAR Rockville/MRIS January 17, 2014 New Member Orientation CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Jill Michaels Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. *GCAAR/Rockville MRIS January 22, 2014 Contracts, Settlement Procedures & Disclosures CEU: 3 hours MD & DC (Elective) Instructor: Chad Older Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. January 22, 2014 Short Sales CEU: 3 hours MD & DC (Elective) Instructor: Chad Older Time: 1:30 – 4:30 p.m. January 23, 2014 Rental Property Management CEU: 3 hours MD & DC (Elective) Instructor: Jean Poitevien Time: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. *GCAAR/NAR Building January 23, 2014 RPR Basics CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Barb Maloney Time: 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. January 23, 2014 RPR Basics CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Barb Maloney Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. * GCAAR Rockville Board Room

January 27, 2014 RPR Advanced CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Win Singleton Time: 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. January 27, 2014 RPR Advanced CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Win Singleton Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. *GCAAR Rockville Board Room January 31, 2014 Maryland Code of Ethics & Predatory Lending CEU: 3 hours MD (Required) & 3 hours DC (Elective) Instructor: Ned Rich Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. February 10, 2014 Maryland Code of Ethics & Predatory Lending CEU: 3 hours MD (Required) & 3 hours DC (Elective) Instructor: Jill Michaels Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. February 10, 2014 New Member Orientation CEU: No CEUs Instructor: Jill Michaels Time: 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. February 26, 2014 Mortgage Basics CEU: 3 hours MD, VA & DC (Elective) Instructor: Brian Martucci Time: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. *GCAAR/NAR Building February 26, 2014 Condo Underwriting Update CEU: 1.5 hours MD & DC (Elective) & 1 hour VA (Elective) Instructor: Brian Martucci Time: 2:00 – 3:30 p.m. *GCAAR/NAR Building

January 23, 2014 FIRPTA for Residential Real Estate CEU: 1.5 hours MD & DC (Elective), 2 hours VA (Elective) Instructor: Lisa Britton Time: 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. *GCAAR/NAR Building

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Capital Area REALTOR®

Quiz Professional Standards As we close out the 100th anniversary year of the National Association of REALTORS®’ Code of Ethics, test your skills to see if you are an expert in REALTOR® professional standards procedures. 1. The REALTOR® Code of Ethics is based on... A.“caveat emptor” (let the buyer beware) B. real estate license law C. the golden rule D. federal antitrust law 2. A seller-client can compel arbitration... A. with a cooperating (“selling”) broker B. with the buyer C. any time after the closing D. if there is a contractual agreement with the listing broker 3. The grievance committee... A. holds preliminary hearings B. determines that the Code may have been violated C. can amend arbitration requests D. cannot have its role carried out by a subset of the professional standards committee 4. The grievance committe’s role in arbitration is to: A. determine arbitrability B. determine whether arbitration is mandatory or voluntary C. determine if the appropriate parties are named D. all of the above 5. In an appeal of a grievance committee’s decision... A. parties can challenge members of the board of directors B. attorneys for the parties may be present C. parties can appear and argue their positions D. only the information the grievance committee had when it made its determination will be given to the directors with the appeal 6. An ethics complaint can be amended by... A. the complainant with the hearing panel’s concurrence B. the hearing panel before the hearing C. the grievance committee D. all of the above 7. The concept of due process includes the right to: A. a full and fair hearing B. an impartial tribunal C. a full and complete knowledge of the charges D. all of the above

ANSWERS: 1: C, 2: D, 3: B, 4: D, 5: D, 6: D, 7: D, 8: A 9: D, 10: B, 11: C, 12: A, 13: B, 14: B

Capital Area REALTOR®

8. An individual’s name can be published after being found in violation of the Code... A. only if the local association adopts a policy authorizing publication B. after three violations of the Code of Ethics are found within two years C. only if a REALTOR® principal is expelled from membership D. Both A and B 9. Who has the right to due process? A. attorneys representing their clients B . complainants C. respondents D. all parties 10. Subpoenas can be issued by hearing panels to compel witnesses to testify... A. in some ethics hearings B. in some arbitration hearings C. by the grievance committee D. only on matters considered by the board of directors 11. A $500 administrative processing fee can be assessed... A. as part of discipline imposed B. against complainants and respondents C. against respondents found in violation of the Code of Ethics D. Both A and B 12. True or false? Mediation must be offered when an arbitration request is received by the association. A. True B. False C. Unable to answer given the information provided 13. For procuring cause purposes, a “successful transaction” is defined as: A. the party paid the cooperating broker’s portion of a commission B. a sale that closes or a lease that is executed C. one in which no parties or REALTORS® are sued D. when the seller accepts the buyer’s offer to purchase 14. A commission dispute between two REALTOR® salespeople affiliated with the same company... A. must be arbitrated by the local association B. must join the REALTOR® principal C. may be arbitrated if the salespeople are still affiliated with the same company at the time of the hearing D. can relate to advertising expenses

For other policy training materials, visit or contact NAR’s Member Policy Department at 312-329-8399.

Serving the Business Needs of OUR Professionals

2013 2013 November - December


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Capital Area REALTOR® Nov/Dec 2013